Siberians are Russia’s native cats and come from the unforgiving climate of the Siberia forest. Siberian Cats first appeared in recorded history around the year 1000. Russian farmers and trades people were the primary people who cared for them. Siberian Cats were needed to protect grain and other products from rodents. Russia was then an agricultural country. Shopkeepers in Moscow were known to compete with each other over whose cat was the biggest and thickest.
Russians like cats and most children grew up with a kitten, the favorite being the Siberian. Siberian cats even existed in Russian fairy tales as protectors of children and as magical beings who opened gateways to realms beyond our ordinary senses.
The Siberian Cat was one of the three longhairs represented at the first cat shows in England in the 1700’s.
The first cat show in the city of Leningrad, Russia was in 1987. Two cat clubs ‘Kotofei’ and ‘Kis’ organized it. This is the date of the beginning of breeding of Siberians in St. Petersburg (Leningrad).
The Soviet Felinological Association registered the Siberian breed. It included both the traditional colors and the Siberian colorpoint (often referred to as Neva Masquerade in Europe).
An entry about Siberian cats was found in a book originally published in 1900 by Helen M.Winslow titled “Concerning Cats.” The entry reads: “Mrs. Frederick Monroe of Riverside Ill. owns a remarkable specimen of a genuine Russian cat, a perfect blue of extraordinary size. The Russian long-haired pet is much less common even than the Persian and Angora.”
The first breeding Siberians were introduced in the United States in 1990. Elizabeth Terrell imported the initial kittens as a trade for her Persian-Himalayans. They arrived on June 28, 1990. Their names were Kaliostro Vasenjkovich of Starpoint, Ofelia Romanova of Starpoint and Naina Romanova of Starpoint.
The Siberians were accepted for registration in CFA in February 2000 and currently compete in the Miscellaneous Category at CFA shows.
If you are considering a cat as a lifelong companion, the Siberian will give you years of happiness with its loving personality.
Some consider its personality dog-like in its loyalty.
Others purchase them for its hypoallergenic qualities. Choosing the remarkable Siberian Cat as a pet marks the beginning of a loving, adventurous, and sometimes hilarious companionship.
Text by Members of The Siberian Cat Club, CFA Siberian Breed Committee and TAIGA (International Siberian Breed Club)