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Cat Breeds /Irish Domestic Cat
Irish Domestic Cat

Irish Domestic Cat

Irish Domestic cats run the gamut when it comes to personality and appearance. That means there's bound to be one just right for you.

Weight

8–15 lb

Size

Medium

Lifespan

12–18 yr

Breed Group

Western

Irish Domestic Cat History

Like all cats, the Irish Domestic can trace its roots to the Felis silvestris population, particularly those near the Fertile Crescent. Experts believe the pet cats we know and love today descended from these wildcats roughly 10,000 years ago. However, when and how those domesticated cats found their way to Ireland is unconfirmed. They likely arrived courtesy of industrious settlers and invading armies nearly 2,000 years ago.

What's not up for debate is the enduring popularity of cats in Ireland. In fact, cats were so beloved that in the Middle Ages, a set of laws known as Catslechtae described penalties associated with mistreating these feline friends. And today, there are approximately 325,000 cats keeping households company throughout Ireland.

Irish Domestic cats are not pedigreed cats. Rather, they are random-bred cats that have developed in Ireland and adapted to their native environment. Despite lacking purebred status, some cat associations allow them to compete in shows in a general "housecat" category.

Irish Domestic Cat Traits

General Appearance

Irish Domestics come in a wide range of colors, sizes, and builds, though typically, they are medium-sized with well-balanced bodies.

Coat and Coloring

These cats come in all coat colors, patterns, and lengths.

Distinctive Physical Traits

Irish Domestics don't have a defined breed standard. The typical Domestic may display any number of adorable features.

Irish Domestic Cat Temperament

An Irish Domestic's personality can vary greatly. They can be quiet or vocal, playful or mellow. However, they are generally intelligent, free-spirited cats.

Irish Domestics are often athletic cats and natural hunters. Using feather wands and other toys they can pounce on or chase are great ways to keep them active and engaged.

Domestics also tend to enjoy high perches where they can safely look out at birds and other wildlife.

Irish Domestic Cat Care

Nutrition

Irish Domestic cats thrive on a high-quality diet. Because nutritional needs vary for kittens, adults, and senior cats, choose a formula that's age-appropriate for your pet.

To prevent overfeeding, carefully measure portions and reduce amounts if your cat gains excess weight. And keep an eye on how many treats you're giving them. As a guideline, treats should be kept to 10% of a cat's daily calories or less.

In addition to meals, provide your cat with plenty of fresh, clean water.

Grooming

Irish Domestics are typically excellent self-groomers. Still, they need regular brushing to keep their coats looking their best. Weekly brushing is usually enough for shorthaired cats. Longhaired cats are more prone to tangles and mats and may require daily brushing.

In addition to combing, trim their claws monthly to prevent overgrowth. Overgrown nails are more likely to snag on something, become torn or damaged, or even grow into the paw pads—leading to pain or infection. In addition to clipping, a scratching post will help keep your cat's nails in good shape and satisfy their instinct to scratch.

Finally, all cats need regular dental care—including at-home teeth brushing and professional dental exams and cleanings.

Health

Obesity is a growing concern in cats. Extra weight can contribute to other health risks, such as arthritis, diabetes, and heart problems. Your veterinarian is a great resource for tips on keeping your cat at a healthy weight.

Irish Domestic Cat Genetic Health Conditions

  • Factor XII Deficiency (Variant 1)

    Factor XII Deficiency is a common blood factor deficiency which does not result in an abnormal tendency to bleed but may have an effect on blood clot stability.

  • Pyruvate Kinase Deficiency

    Pyruvate Kinase (PK) Deficiency is a disorder that causes anemia due to the breakdown of red blood cells.

  • Mucopolysaccharidosis Type VII (Variant 2)

    Mucopolysaccharidosis Type VII is a disorder causing weakness, growth retardation, facial and other skeletal abnormalities, and clouding of the eyes.

  • Glutaric Aciduria Type II

    Glutaric Aciduria Type II causes loss of appetite, vomiting and seizures in young cats.

  • Cystinuria Type B (Variant 3)

    Cystinuria is a condition that predisposes cats to form cystine crystals and stones within the urinary tract, which can then cause irritation and blockage.

  • Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD)

    Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD) is the most common inherited disease in cats. The disease causes the formation of fluid-filled cysts in the kidneys that can lead to kidney failure.

  • Lipoprotein Lipase Deficiency

    Lipoprotein Lipase Deficiency is a metabolic disorder that causes decreased body mass and reduced growth rates in affected kittens and can cause stillbirths in affected queens.

  • MDR1 Medication Sensitivity

    MDR1 Medication Sensitivity is a disorder caused by a defect to a drug pumping protein that plays an important role in limiting drug absorption and distribution (particularly to the brain). Cats with the MDR1 variant may have severe adverse reactions to some commonly used medications.

  • Cystinuria Type B (Variant 2)

    Cystinuria is a condition that predisposes cats to form cystine crystals and stones within the urinary tract, which can then cause irritation and blockage.

  • Cystinuria Type B (Variant 1)

    Cystinuria is a condition that predisposes cats to form cystine crystals and stones within the urinary tract, which can then cause irritation and blockage.

  • Factor XII Deficiency (Variant 2)

    Factor XII Deficiency is a common blood factor deficiency which does not result in an abnormal tendency to bleed but may have an effect on blood clot stability.

  • Myotonia Congenita

    Myotonia Congenita is a condition that results in stiff movement and delayed relaxation of muscles after exercise.

  • Acute Intermittent Porphyria (Variant 2)

    Acute Intermittent Porphyria (AIP) is caused by faulty enzyme activity and results in brownish discoloration of the teeth and urine in affected cats.

  • Acute Intermittent Porphyria (Variant 5)

    Acute Intermittent Porphyria (AIP) is caused by faulty enzyme activity and results in brownish discoloration of the teeth and urine in affected cats.

  • GM1 Gangliosidosis

    GM1 Gangliosidosis causes muscle tremors, uncoordinated movements, and blindness.

  • Hyperoxaluria Type II

    Hyperoxaluria Type II is a kidney disorder leading to severe weakness and kidney failure in young cats.

  • Vitamin D-Dependent Rickets

    Vitamin D-Dependent Rickets results in skeletal abnormalities caused by low blood calcium levels.

  • Hemophilia B (Variant 2)

    Hemophilia B, or Factor IX Deficiency, is a blood clotting disorder that can result in tiredness, decreased appetite, fever, lameness, and prolonged bleeding times after injury, trauma or surgery.

  • Mucopolysaccharidosis Type VI Modifier

    Mucopolysaccharidosis Type VI Modifier causes a mild degenerative joint disease, but only if one copy of Mucopolysaccharidosis Type VI is also present.

  • Congenital Erythropoietic Porphyria

    Congenital Erythropoietic Porphyria (CEP) is caused by faulty enzyme activity and results in brownish discoloration of the teeth and urine in affected cats.

  • Mucopolysaccharidosis Type I

    Mucopolysaccharidosis Type I is a disorder causing failure to thrive, facial and other skeletal abnormalities, tremors, and clouding of the eyes.

  • Sphingomyelinosis (Variant 2)

    Sphingomyelinosis causes progressive incoordination and tremors, enlargement of the spleen and liver, and changes in the lungs.

  • Hemophilia B (Variant 1)

    Hemophilia B, or Factor IX Deficiency, is a blood clotting disorder that can result in tiredness, decreased appetite, fever, lameness, and prolonged bleeding times after injury, trauma or surgery.

  • GM2 Gangliosidosis

    GM2 Gangliosidosis causes muscle tremors, uncoordinated movements, difficulty eating, and blindness.

  • Mucopolysaccharidosis Type VI

    Mucopolysaccharidosis Type VI is a rare disorder causing dwarfism, degenerative joint disease, and clouding of the eyes.

  • Dihydropyrimidinase Deficiency

    Dihydropyrimidinase Deficiency is a condition that causes tiredness, weakness, vomiting, and high levels of ammonia in the blood.

  • Sphingomyelinosis (Variant 1)

    Sphingomyelinosis causes progressive incoordination and tremors, enlargement of the spleen and liver, and changes in the lungs.

  • Mucopolysaccharidosis Type VII (Variant 1)

    Mucopolysaccharidosis Type VII is a disorder causing weakness, growth retardation, facial and other skeletal abnormalities, and clouding of the eyes.

  • GM2 Gangliosidosis Type II (Discovered in Domestic Shorthair cats)

    GM2 Gangliosidosis Type II causes muscle tremors, uncoordinated movements, difficulty eating, and blindness.

  • Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia

    Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia is an endocrine disorder which leads to aggression, abnormalities of the genitalia, and excessive drinking and urination.

  • Earfold and Osteochondrodysplasia (Discovered in the Scottish Fold)

    The Earfold and Osteochondrodysplasia variant results in the breed defining folded ears of Scottish Fold cats and is associated with skeletal malformations and arthritis.

  • Acute Intermittent Porphyria (Variant 1)

    Acute Intermittent Porphyria (AIP) is caused by faulty enzyme activity and results in brownish discoloration of the teeth and urine in affected cats.

  • Cystinuria Type 1A

    Cystinuria is a condition that predisposes cats to form cystine crystals and stones within the urinary tract, which can then cause irritation and blockage.

With more than 45 health tests, Wisdom Panel™ Complete for Cats screens for these and other important genetic conditions—allowing you to better plan for your cat's lifelong care.

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