Foldex cats are popular in the United States, although they are primarily bred in Canada. The breed derives its name from its parents, the Scottish Fold and the Exotic Shorthair hence Foldex. It dates back to 1992 but was recognized in 2008 as a “New Breed” for a championship status it claimed in 2010. Since then, you might have seen a few celebrities with owl-looking cats, but if you have never come across the Foldex cat, here is everything you need to know about it.
1. It Was Introduced to Shows in 1993
The Foldex cats’ popularity would not have grown if there had not been an exhibition in 1993. After the experimental breeding between Exotic Shorthairs and Exotic Longhairs with Scottish Folds, the Foldex cat was born. Later on, during a show in 1993, Betty Ann Yaxley introduced it to the world, and it immediately captured the audience’s attention. As a result, breeders decided to start developing them further and taking them to shows.
2. Why the Breed Has Gained Popularity
The breed was developed because the breeders wanted a cat that looked like a teddy bear. Although most people still refer to it as a snuggly feline, the Foldex cat resembles an owl. It has been studied that people like round faces, and with a face that looks like that of an owl, the Foldex cat has become a darling to many. Konrad Lorenz argues that cuteness is determined by a set of facial and body features. Usually, humans love animals with large eyes, retreating chin, and bulging craniums. Therefore, despite owls being associated with bad omen in most cultures, the round faces and big eyes that the Foldex cats have are enough to make the cat breed quite a fascination for most people.
3. It Can inherit Heath Issues from the Scottish Fold
While most people would rush to get a Foldex cat due to the appeal of the round eyes and snuggly fur, you should note that it will most likely inherit the same health conditions that a Scottish Fold develops. All Scottish Folds have abnormal bone development in some limbs, and it causes osteoarthritis that usually affects mainly the ankles in the distal limbs.
4. It Was Accepted as an “Experimental Breed” in 1998
The more breeders presented the experimental breed to shows, the more the Foldex cat gained attention. Jeanne Barrette was among the many admirers who attended the shows, and as a breeder, she committed her time and resources to develop the breed. She wanted the cat to be recognized; thus, in 1998, her wish came true when the Foldex cat was recognized as an “Experimental breed.” However, barely any progress has been made since then, and so far, only the Canadian Cat Association recognizes it as an “experimental breed.” As a result, the Foldex cat is mainly bred in Canada.
5. How to Care for Them
The Cat Breed Selector shares that the number of times you brush your Foldex cat’s fur will depend on how dense the hair is. Since they can be bred from either Shorthair or Longhair, the fur can either be short or long. If long, the possibility of tangling increases the longer you stay without brushing it; hence maintaining a twice a week brushing is recommended. Shorthairs, on the other hand, will do with once a week brushing. Due to the folded ears, Foldex cats need extra care for their ears to avoid infections, thus clean as often as needed. While trimming nails can wait for a week, brushing the teeth will have to be after two days or every day, depending on what your vet advises.
6. Its Population Could Decrease
Breeders keep developing breeds because they have a ready market; after all, it is business like any other, and profits are the motivation. However, the supply of Foldex cats is not one that any businessman might be interested in, given the many hurdles. For instance, the British Veterinary Association (BVA) advises prospective cat owners to pick a healthier breed and avoid those with unusual features. It even proposed banning the Scottish Folds, which the GCSF(Governing Council of the Cat Fancy)approves of, seeing that it banned the breed’s registration in the 1970s.
7. It can be Bred from Four Combinations of Mating
We talk of the number of Foldex cats dwindling but not going into extinction because they can be bred from the other two combinations that do not need the Scottish Fold. Mating two Foldex cats will, of course, result in a Foldex cat. You can also opt to have a Foldex and Exotic shorthair or go back to how the original breed was created by mating an Exotic Shorthair with a Scottish Fold. The last option is to mate a Scottish Fold with a Foldex, but you must ensure that one of them is straight-eared in this instance.
8. The History of One of Its Ancestors
The Conversation informs us of how the Scottish Fold came to be. It originated from Scotland when a white barn kitty named Susie was born in Scotland at a farm in Perthshire. The cat had forward-folding ears caused by weak cartilage that could not support the ears. A local shepherd, William Ross, became fascinated by the mutation thus decided to preserve it by crossbreeding Susie’s kittens with British Shorthair cats.
9. It is born with Straight Unfolded Ears
Before you think that the breeder lied to you about your newly adopted cat being a Foldex cat because of its straight ears, you should know that the folds start developing at 3-4 weeks after birth. However, if the litter was developed through mating a folded ear cat and a straight ear cat, you might have a cat with straight ears in the long run. Only half of the litter of such mating develops folded ears, so always ask the breeder how the kitten you want to adopt was developed to be sure. PETLIFECA warns that a cat bred from two folded ears could develop skeletal defects.
10. Why It Is Good with Children
Stuffed toys are a children’s perfect companion, and some will not go to sleep with their favorite. With a cat that looks like a teddy bear, the Foldex cat is an obvious playmate choice for children who perceive round faces as friendly. Furthermore, the Foldex cat’s temperament makes it ideal for children because it is affectionate and loves cuddles and caresses. It is also playful and usually quiet without the demand for excessive attention, so even when your child needs to rest, the Foldex cat will not mind.