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Exotic Shorthair

Exotic Shorthair Cat Breed Profile

Weight 5.5-10 lbs (2.5-4.5 kg)
Origin USA
Color Black, white, brown, orange, gray; multi-colored
Fur Short, soft, thick
Lifespan 10-14 years
Personality Affectionate, docile, quiet, playful

Exotic Shorthair Photo: joke50e/Shutterstock

Breed Characteristics

The Exotic Shorthair cat looks very similar to the Persian. They’re sometimes jokingly called “Persian cats for lazy people” because they have the “grumpy” face of the Persian but their shorter hair is considerably easier to care for.

Personality and Temperament

The Exotic Shorthair cat has a very cute, gentle, calm, friendly and loving character. And they’re absolutely easy-going. They’re also much more active and lively than Persian cats (though not as much as the lively Abyssinian or Savannah).


Exotic Shorthair Photo: Blanscape/Shutterstock

Keeping Them Happy

It doesn’t take much to entertain an Exotic Shorthair: a piece of string, a ribbon toy, a crumpled up piece of paper or a ball is plenty. If its owner doesn’t want to play right now, it will keep them company by sitting at their side or following them through the house. Or even better, sitting on their lap. That’s their favorite place! And the perfect location for petting :)

Unlike challenging cat breeds such as the Balinese or Bengal, the Exotic Shorthair is always unobtrusive and will simply wait patiently until you’re ready to give them love and attention. And they’ll give this back in their special loving way. There is a noticeable difference between female and male Exotic Shorthairs. While the females are a little more reserved, the males tend to be more clingy but also more loving.

They also get on well with dogs.

Exotic Shorthair Photo: Wutlufaipy/Shutterstock


Pros and Cons


  • Calm
  • Quiet
  • Docile
  • Patient
  • Affectionate
  • Easy grooming
  • Gets along well with other pets
  • Can deal with any kind of situation


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Exotic Shorthair Photo: ArjaKo's/Shutterstock

Popular Cat Breed

The Exotic Shorthair is especially popular in the USA. It has been at the top of the Cat Fanciers' Association list for many years. In 2022 she took 4th place. The ranking is based on the number of registered cats.


The Exotic Shorthair is a medium-sized cat with expressive eyes, small round ears, a short thick neck, short legs and large round paws. Their soft, fluffy coats might be called short but are actually more like half-length. They come in white, blue, black, cream, chocolate, lilac, silver and golden.

Exotic Shorthair Photo: Blanscape/Shutterstock


Who’d have thought it? The Exotic Shorthair was actually an “accident”! The breeders actually wanted to breed American Shorthairs with silver fur and green eyes by adding Persian cats into the mix. The kittens looked more like Persians rather than American Shorthairs. But the breeders liked them and decided to involve Burmese and Russian Blue cats (for the short fur) and then more Persians. And that’s how today’s exotic shorthair cats came to be.

Cruel Breeding

The Exotic shorthair cat is considered as animal cruelty. Its nose was bred to be particularly short - just like the Persian cat. Also, their nostrils are too close together. As a result, it has great difficulty breathing and often suffers from shortness of breath. The upper jaw is shortened, too. This often causes misaligned teeth and leads to pain when eating. The cats also often have eye infections because the eyes are protruding due to the flat face.

What is more important: “looking great” or „being healthy“? After all, everyone has to answer the question for themselves. You don't want to see your animal suffer and you don't want to support breeding, too? Here is the good news: There is a great variety of other pretty breeds that are healthy and "normal".

Fun Facts

The exotic shorthair has a very soft, melodic voice.

Comparable Breeds

Exotic Shorthair Photo: Frank Sin/Shutterstock