There are several cat breeds present in this world. As a matter of fact, the International Cat Organization recognized as many as 70 breeds. These numbers are bound to change with the addition of many new species over time. However, among these species, many cats have flat faces. But do you know why cats possess flat-shaped faces?
Well, it is primarily due to the genetics of some breeds of cats. However, the bone structure of a cat’s face also plays a crucial role in turning it into a flat shape. So, the combination of both of these in a breed makes them have this trait of a “flat face.” It is prevalent among cats that are part of the brachycephalic family.
Here, we have upheld a list of cat breeds with flat faces. But before knowing about them in-depth, let’s learn the effects of having such unique attributes.
Issues Cats Encounter For Having Flat Face
The trait of a flat face not only differentiates cats based on their appearance but also symbolizes how some have a unique genetic makeup to the rest of the breeds. However, the flat facial structure and tiny nose area put flat-faced cat breeds at a higher risk of health issues.
Here are some common problems these cats encounter.
Due to their abnormal development over the years, flat-faced felines are likelier to have Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome or BAS. It is an uncomfortable situation that does not allow them to breathe properly. Due to this condition, snoring may become common in these cats. Also, they may contract allergies or respiratory infections quickly. Thus, their ability to play and be active can be negatively affected due to these breathing problems.
A brachycephalic cat’s trachea is hypoplastic, making it smaller than most cats. It fuels their discomfort in breathing properly. Their airflow may also be restricted because of an elongated soft palate that partly blocks the trachea. A comprehensive veterinary exam is the only way to know if your cat is highly affected by this condition. It will also reveal ways to help the cat live a better life.
Flat-faced cats also have an altered shape of skulls. Their teeth may very well be misaligned since they are flat-nosed. While to a feline owner, it may seem cute, it can be an excruciating thing for the cat. Regular oral exams are essential for your cat to overcome its pain and receive proper medications. These cats may also have their lower jaw jutting out more than the upper one, which affects their eating pace and habits. However, you can offer them dental chew toys like the Potaroma Catnip Toy Ball to play with. It helps cats do away with dental issues and maintains good oral health.
An altered skull shape can also mean excessive tear flow in your cat. These kitties have more skin folds that retain unnecessary moisture from runny eyes. It is the leading cause of dermatitis in them. Their tear ducts may sometimes be blocked due to BAS, which requires regular cleaning from your end to prevent skin infections. You need to monitor your cat for these symptoms early on so they do not develop any disorder or issue either.
Thus, if you own a cat with this trait in its genetic makeup, you must properly take care of them to avoid such health hazards. Here are some ways you can adopt to help your pet overcome or get relief from these issues.
Monitoring playing habits
Giving prescribed medicines
Knowing health history
Regular cleaning of eyes and fur around it
1. British Shorthair
They are one of the cat breeds with moderately flat faces and chubby cheeks, rendering them a unique look. While these cats are gorgeous, they are prone to heart-related problems. It often results in the cats being lazy by nature.
2. British Longhair
The British longhair is a great kitty to get when you want a long-living companion. The average life span of these kitties is about 15 years, making them the perfect option for when you need a lively fur friend. It is a fast-learning cat, meaning it will quickly learn to be your friend and the various tricks you teach. These cats are bright and are always looking for playful engagement. However, you should ensure they get their share of active play throughout the day to remain healthy. Regular activities retain their muscular strength without overexerting themselves.
3. Exotic Shorthair
They are one of the most popular and loved short-haired cats. This beautiful exotic cat will add charm to your house like you cannot imagine. They love to spend time with their owners and be petted with affection. Thus, this breed will be a great choice if you want a cat friend who loves being around you. However, they can develop separation anxiety if you are away from them for too long. So, always return their affection and do not leave them alone for longer durations.
4. Himalayan Cat
This hybrid of Siamese and Persian cats is very lovable to owners. Due to the flat bone structure of their face, the appearance of these cats become scrunched up, making them look cuter. But this structure negatively impacts their lives by making it difficult for them to breathe.
5. Persian Cat
These cats are famous for their long hair, fur, gorgeous eyes, and round faces. However, their nose is too small based on their flat facial structure. Hence, they frequently encounter respiratory problems such as heavy breathing or panting. As a result, these cats don’t like to indulge in many physical activities.
6. Scottish Fold
Originating in Scotland, this cat breed is named “Scottish Fold.” This cat shares the genetic makeup necessary to have a flat face. However, the too-flat structure of their face adversely affects their lives by making them prone to dental problems.
7. Burmese Cat
Like others, this cat breed also has a “flat face.” It is a genetic trait passed from generation to generation in these cats. Thus, they are prone to common vision-related problems, like the felines sharing this genetic makeup.
Burmilla is an underrated flat-faced cat that deserves great recognition. It has been crossed from the silver-coated chinchilla Persian and a Burmese cat. Hence, it looks so good and is one of the most intelligent breeds out there. This cat is perfect for those who love adventures because now they have a companion sharing their excitement. It is active and loves to go on adventures, especially hikes. When not in the mood for adventure, it prefers to relax outdoors.
9. Selkirk Rex
The all-American cat, Selkirk Rex, has its roots in Europe and Asia. This bright and cheerful cat was first bred in the 80s. It resembles its crossing parents – Persian, British Shorthair, and Exotic Shorthair. The wavy fur of a Selkirk Rex makes it look incredibly gorgeous. This cat is particularly affectionate and likes to keep its owner’s company wherever they go. More than hours of playtime, these cats enjoy cuddling and sitting on soft cushions.
The munchkin is a relatively shorter cat than most, about 3 inches shorter, to be precise. It is a very cute breed that many cat lovers adopt because it adds charm wherever it goes! They are usually naughty, energetic, bubbly, and very social with other cats. Some munchkins may even steal little shiny things and keep them near their spot in your house! Note that a munchkin cannot breed with another of its kind, so consult the right breeder when you want a kitten.
The gorgeous and active Bombay cat was first bred to resemble the Indian black leopard. Its athletic tendencies come from its American shorthair and Burmese parents. It is also a very affectionate cat, another trait it inherited from its parents. Its smooshed face may sometimes be less prominent than its other flat-faced counterparts. Nevertheless, it needs regular checkups to ensure its good health, just like other cats on this list.
Cats with flat faces have a unique combination of genetic composition and bone structure. Sometimes, this attribute becomes their sole identity. However, this trait also comes with many health problems for your pet. So, if you have a flat-faced kitty, care for it adequately and maintain good health to give them a healthy lifestyle.