American Curl Cat
- Size: Small-Medium, 5 to 10 lbs
- Energy Level: 5/5
- Talkative: 2/5
- Coat: Short to long with minimal to no undercoat
- Hypoallergenic: No
- Seeking: Very affectionate beings who spend lots of time playing with me and giving me tons of attention
- Child Friendly: Only if they play with me
- Personality Snapshot: Very lively and curious, extremely sociable and loves to play
As you can probably tell by my name, I am best known for my distinct curly ears. Unlike other felines whose ears droop in the front or sag on either side, mine have a unique backward curl to them that form a crescent shape. My ears are actually so curly that they can sweep back a full 90 degrees! And if you’re wondering, yes, I do like to show them off for attention.
You see, I haven’t always had these ears. When I was a baby, my ears started out straight just like any other cat’s. But as I grew older and stronger, my ears grew more and more remarkable curly.
Now they even have tufts of hair on them, making them even more conspicuous!
My head is prominently round and I have a pair of the cutest almond-shaped, expressive eyes that you will ever see, if I do say so myself.
If you give them a closer inspection, you’ll notice that they have an oval curve that becomes relatively rounder at the bottom. My nose is neither too long nor too short and it is complemented by a striking chin that gives me a rather regal look.
All of my friends say I have a lean, graceful body. Now while I have well-toned muscles, I do not look buff in any way at all. Think more ballerina than body builder.
My legs are just the right size and they taper down to medium-sized paws that make it rather easy for me to move around – with grace and finesse, mind you. Whether it’s prancing around in the living room to play or scaling my indoor cat condo to rest and freshen up a bit, I make each movement look good.
My tail is fairly long and can even be the same length as my body. It is very straight and doesn’t have the kinks and crinkles that you may see in the tails of other cats. It’s not too big in size either. I also think it’s also got a mesmerizing jiggle to it when I walk that usually results in a few stares.
I have a smooth and silky coat that doesn’t really get too plush-y even when it has reached its full length. It is also very dense to the touch and you’ll think that you’re caressing your favorite stuffed toy when you handle me. Oh, and I’m very open to cuddling.
Spend just a few minutes with me and you’ll know that I’m one of the sweetest and most affectionate felines you’ve ever met. Compared to other kitties, I tend to reciprocate when I feel that you’re showering me with attention.
Who has time to play hard to get, after all.
I have a fondness for people, young and old, and won’t have trouble adjusting to new environments. I don’t even have a problem making a connection with infants and toddlers, and can easily tolerate roughhousing.
I get along with other pets like dogs and fellow cats just fine. I like the company and I think that play is much more enjoyable when there are more participants to share the fun with.
I have a fondness for interactive games. Apart from having laser tag on top of my checklist, I am also known to play fetch and catch.
I’ve been told by my friends that I have a tendency to become very intimate with the people and animals close to my heart. Besides curling in laps and using shoulders a perch, I also like to gently rub faces with my paws and give hugs.
Just to get this off my chest, I am not a fan of mindless chitter chatter. Rather than persistently meow and purr like other felines, I prefer doing it in a more relaxed way, particularly cooing and trilling gently to get your attention. I may be very active and playful, but being noisy is definitely not one of my traits!
And ‘though I’m no wordsmith, I do make up for it through physical affection. Those closest to me describe me as a very perceptive and compassionate feline. I can just pick up when someone is feeling under the sun and I am always willing to give comfort when it is needed. I am also a very cheerful cat and won’t hesitate to share a happy vibe with other people and pets.
I’m also insatiably curious and no day is complete without a little inquisitive exploration.
I am a brave detective at heart and won’t shy away from investigating noises in and around the house. I like to check out moving objects, lights and different smells. It gives me immense satisfaction to get to the bottom of things, you know
My friends say that I am a certified exercise buff. Well, I’ve got the physique to prove it, too! I have a strict workout regimen to keep my body performing optimally and looking admirably fit.
I’m often compared to that high-strung, super-energetic Abby the Abyssinian, and I’ll admit I do share her fondness for exercise.
And there’s something else I should mention, for the sake of full disclosure: I am a bit of an attention whore. I like attention. Like, lots and lots of attention. Maybe I never grew out of my kittenish ways – whatever it is, I love to be petted behind the ears, given a belly rub, called by my name and become part of everything that’s going on around the household. Whether it’s moving the couch or finding a place for the new television set, I’ll be there and yes, you’ll have to acknowledge my cuteness.
My Ideal Human
The truth is my ideal human is definitely someone who can handle my need for regular exercise while showering me with immense amounts of attention.
I am more inclined to go for a human who likes sweating it out with me each and every day than one who wants to just sit there and watch me play by myself.
Couch potatoes need not apply.
I have a soft spot for humans who sincerely want to play interactive games with me like fetch, catch, and laser tag. I really don’t mind if there are children or other pets around as long as they’re willing to play with me too.
Akin to the American Bobtail, I am very tolerant and will simply walk away instead of showing aggression when things get too rough during play.
Granny Curly told me that our family began in 1981 when avid cat enthusiasts, Grace and Joe Ruga, were paid a visit by a curious-looking kitten one warm June day. This young cat looked like any other kitty, but flaunted a pair of rather backward-curling ears. The couple took her in and named her Shulamith, which meant “black but comely” in Hebrew.
When Shulamith became of age, she had kittens that inherited her distinct curly ears.
Joe gave one female kitten named Mercedes to her sister in law and fellow cat buff, Esther Brimlow, who was living a few miles away in Orange, California.
Esther reared Mercedes until she eventually had kittens of her own. They also inherited their grandma Shulamith’s distinct curly ears.
Their unique physical attributes made them somewhat of a sensation among animal lovers in Orange and eventually attracted the attention of cat fancier, Nancy Kiester.
Kiester thought that although the kittens who descended from Shulamith shared similar physical characteristics with another feline breed, namely the Scottish Fold (or Curl), it was possible that she is on the verge of establishing a new cat line.
Just to make sure, Kiester contacted Jean Grimm, one of the foremost breeders of Scottish Folds in the United States, and asked her to verify if Shulamith was really unique or not. When Grimm told her that Shulamith isn’t a Scottish Fold, Kiester knew it was time to push to establish that Shulasmith was an entirely different breed.
In 1987, The International Cat Association (TICA) officially recognized my breed as the American Curl. We were given the same recognition by the Cat Fancier’s Association (CFA) six years later.
How to Keep Me Healthy and Happy
There are only three things you need to keep in mind if you’d like to keep me happy and healthy. Let’s start with my need for lots of space to play and exercise. Now while some cats are content with just a place to relax, I need an area to run around and keep my muscles toned and fit. Having an indoor cat tree or cat condo also helps, too.
Second, I need you to play and interact with me on a regular basis. Contrary to popular cat stereotypes, I’m neither aloof nor distant and would actually love to have your attention. Don’t be surprised if I curl in your lap while you watch your favorite show on TV, stay by your side when you’re sorting the laundry or claim a bit of space on the bed when you turn in for the night.
Third, although I don’t require any special health care needs, I still have to be brushed meticulously at least twice a week to get rid of dirt and grime in my coat as well as any unwanted visitors like parasites. My ears also need to be regularly cleaned and checked by a medical professional to avoid cartilage problems, which can make them droopy if neglected – and nobody wants that.
- I’m sort of a people pleaser and this need to impress can even lead to injury. Case in point – I can be taught to fetch things like sticks, slippers and pieces of cloth. But please don’t ask me to fetch stuff that are bigger than my mouth since I’ll probably do it just to impress you, even when it can hurt me.
- I am nicknamed the Peter Pan of cats? because of my playful attitude and sunny disposition. Well, Neverland is not the worst place to be, methinks.
- I’ve been described as only having two different expressions, particularly happy and curious. Stimulate me the right way and you just might get to see both expressions playing on my face at once!
- It takes as much as 16 to 18 weeks for my ears to reach their final shape and form. During this time, my ears even stay straight and erect for up to a whole week before getting their signature curl.