Published on August 21st, 2015 | by Debbie Martin0
Know your furry friends – Australian Mist Cats
What is an Australian Mist Cat?
These cats are short haired and medium sized, with large eyes and a round head. They have a short coat without an undercoat, which means that they don’t require a lot of brushing as they don’t lose much hair. They have a very distinctive coat pattern – the ground colour (which is a paler shade than the pattern), the pattern and the “misted veil” which is an effect caused by random ticking in their solid colour areas. They also often have barred or ringed patterns on their legs and tail, as well as lines of colour around the face and neck. There are a large range of different colours, including blue, warm brown, chocolate, gold, peach and lilac.
History of the Breed
This breed of cat originated in Australia and was developed by Truda Straede in 1976. It was created by crossing the Abyssinian and Burmese cats with other domestic short hair varieties in order to create a short haired cat with an attractive spotted coat. The name of the cat was originally Spotted Mist, but it was changed to Australian Mist in 1998. The change occurred when cats with marbled rather than spotted coats were accepted officially as part of the breed.
These cats have a large gene pool, as they are derived from over 30 different foundation cats with Burmese, Abyssinian and Australian moggy roots. The Burmese genes add the laid back personality and the pattern, the Abyssinian genes contribute the beautiful ticking pattern on the fur.
Most Australian Mist cats are bred in Australia, but there are a few catteries in the UK that produce this breed. Mary Stuart was the first cat breeder to bring Australian Mist cats to the UK. This breed is now accepted for championship status by the World Cat Federation and it has gained preliminary recognition with the GCCF – the Governing Council of the Cat Fancy.
When the Australian Mist is a kitten they are very lively and playful, but they tend to mellow out the older they get. These cats are tolerant of handling and cuddling and they don’t often scratch, which makes them good cats for families with young children.
These cats are very social and they thrive on human interaction, which means that they are generally happy to be mostly indoor cats (which will also protect the native wildlife). They are very affectionate and they will likely curl up in the lap of anyone, even people whom they have just met.
These cats also get along well with other cats and dogs and they are adaptable to any household or lifestyle. They want to spend a lot of time with their owners and they are very people oriented – you will never feel lonely if you have an Australian Mist cat waiting for you when you get home. They are known for stopping whatever they are doing to greet anyone who walks through the door.
Common Health Issues
These cats are generally healthy and they have an average life expectancy of 15-18 years. They are similar to the Burmese in the sense that they don’t have many breed related health problems and they are hardy. However, as with all cats it is important to have regular health check-ups so that any problems can be identified quickly.
Some of the lighter coloured Australian Mist cats have been known to develop skin allergies.
Gingivitis can be a concern too, so make sure you provide your cat with good quality dry food and soft food. You can supplement their diet with chicken necks and have their teeth cleaned twice yearly by a veterinarian. This breed can be prone to weight issues so make sure that you monitor their diet and encourage them to exercise!
Other health problems that this cat might be susceptible to include tapeworms, eye problems and feline lower urinary tract disease.
Since this cat has a short coat they do not require much grooming. They clean themselves, so they don’t require a lot of help from you when it comes to grooming. A good idea would be to groom a few minutes twice per week with a grooming mitt, which can be purchased at any pet store. Keeping the teeth clean is important – you can ask your vet about toothpaste and toothbrushes that are designed for cats.
Although your Australian Mist doesn’t require a lot of grooming, most will really love the attention that comes with it and they will be happy to curl up in your lap and purr as you stroke them with the grooming mitt.
More Tips for Owning an Australian Mist Cat
What else should you keep in mind before you make the decision to bring home your Australian mist cat? Here are some important tips to know if you are considering adopting an Australian Mist cat:
- The Australian Mist is a breed of cat that does not handle new environments well. It will be reclusive or reluctant when it is first brought home, so be patient and give them a chance to adjust to their new surroundings.
- Allergies can also be common with this breed, so if you suffer from cat allergies you might want to consider a different cat such as a hairless breed.
- If you don’t live in a location where your cat can roam free, you can train the Australian Mist to go for a walk on a lead.
- Consider developing a safe outdoor enclosure for your Australian Mist cat, where they can enjoy the outdoors while protected from any dangers. You will be able to have a happy and adventurous cat without worrying about where they are and when they are coming back.
This lovely breed is beautiful and has a sweet and friendly temperament – making it the ideal pet for any cat lover.