Norwegian Forest Cats are a cousin to Maine Coons, having a similar body shape and size. Norwegian Forest Cats are slightly more delicate in boning and not as large or heavy. Both breeds like their food and grow to be quite large, taking five years to reach maturity, with the Norwegian Forest Cat weighing in at 10-14 pounds average in females and 18 for males.
Norwegian Forest Cats are a very old breed originating in Scandinavia. A breeding program was initiated in the 1970s to ensure the survival of the breed.
Norwegian Forest Cats are certainly suited to the cold weather of Norway and the Scandinavia countries, having developed a heavy double-furred coat with extensive guard-hairs. Grooming once a week is suggested especially in the spring.
Norwegian Forest Cat History
The Norwegian Forest Cat is an ancient breed that is entirely free from selective breeding. This breed is one of the cutest, sturdiest and gorgeous breed of cat.
The eagle eyes, sharp cutting edge features, strong sturdy built of Norwegian forest cats impress and amuse all. There are hundreds and thousands of stories revealed in the world about the history of Norwegian forest cats. This cat breed has long being associated with super naturals and Norwegian folk tales.
The history of Norwegian forest cats arises in wild forests of Scandinavia during the time of Vikings.
It is said that the Norwegian forest cat were the cats of Vikings and traveled with them to the shores of North America. It is also said that some of their offspring were left behind in United States and in Canada, and produced a line of feral cats.
The literally meaning of Norwegian forest cat means “forest cat” but some four thousand years ago, they are back into the domestication and used to live as a human pet and people oriented cat. These cats have feral roots but they are not wild at all. They are very playful, calm and social breed of cat who loves human company and playful activities with human beings.
The Norwegian forest cat is also known as Wegie (wee-gees) in United States and Norse Skogkatt in Norway.
They are originated from the Scandinavian forest. Some people have believed in this history that the Norwegian forest cats are progenies of the Turkish Longhair breed Angora. They convinced that some Turkish emperors at that time had Scandinavian guards called the Vaeringer. Beside this, the Norwegian forest cats stories are also seen in several Nordic myths involve Norwegian pets that belong to the Vikings.
One of the most common nymphs of Norwegian Mythology, Hulder was thought to be supernatural and invisible most of the time and other times he appeared as a cat. Because of these myths and nymphs, some people believe that these cats have supernatural and magical abilities. Apart from these myths, some Norwegian children stories also refer to these magical and majestic species as the “fairy cat”.
Another part of history of Norwegian forest cats revealed that they are purely originated from Norwegian forests and traced back to the 1500’s when these sturdy and strong cats were known to be companions of hardy and adventurous people of Norway, the Vikings. They were considered their Norwegian forest cats as male lions that hunt prey and protect their fields and herds.
Another history told us that the Norwegian forest cats were used by the Vikings at the ship boards in order to control the rodent population at the ships. The doughty Viking sailors took these cats with them on the boards and encountered all around the world. Whatever is the story but the fact is that Norwegian forest cats are robust, strong and vivacious species liked by millions of people around the world.
It is now used as a human cat and a good home pet. Norwegian forest cats have many short pet names like Wegie or Troll Cat (in USA), Huldrekatt and Norsk Skaukatt (in Norway) and as Norkskogkat or Skogkat in Scandinavia. It is the only breed that evolved natural selection and free from human breeding selection.
Also, the Norwegian forest cat is the only hardiest cat that would be able to survive and resist the harsh cold Norwegian weather. Her thick warm woolly inner coat provides her protection from the extra cold climate. After her used in domestication, the Norwegian forest cat enjoyed the company of human beings and love to stick around her human companions.
Characteristic of Norwegian Forest Cat
Literally means “forest cats” but in real they are not. The Norwegian forest cats are considered as most people oriented specie and great pet. Majority of their owners described them as intelligent, calm, obedient and playful pet.
Apart from such a wild and harsh name, the general characteristics of a Norwegian forest cat are totally opposite with its name. Cool, calm, friendly and fluffy are the words that truly define Norwegian forest cats. From her general appearance and looks, a Norwegian forest cat looks like a wild sturdy muscular cat but believe me it is a wonderful house pet and human companion.
The personality and one of the best characteristic of Norwegian forest cat is her strong boned physical feature and sweet behavior. The survival aspect of Norwegian forest cat best suited to her name as they have a natural instinct to survive with harsh cold weather of Norway. However, it is true that a Norwegian forest cat is very brainy, full of fun, sociable and responsive. These extrovert cats don’t have critical personality and nature.
A Norwegian forest cat can best for families having small kids and for first time owner.
Naturally, the Norwegian forest cats are extremely fearless and daring but don’t harm her owner and other home pets. If they groom and handle properly in a humble, caring and loving way, than none other than Norwegian forest cat is a best pet for you.
They are aware and alert all time and are scanning their surroundings and outer world and the high level of awareness in Norwegian forest cats are quite astonishing. The Norwegian forest cats are very good climbers and being a natural forest cat, even an indoor Norwegian forest cat is ready to climb because of her innate need to climb.
Another characteristic of a Norwegian forest cat is that she can lives in a small apartment also.
She is a good adapter and accepts the change easily. She also loves to play and exercises. Daily out door walk is must for Norwegian forest cat, otherwise this home pet can be dump and numb. Her lively nature and social fauna demands a brisk walk on regular basis.
A Norwegian forest cat is a social breed. She loves to cuddle, jiggle and play with children and other house pets without harm them. She has calm, soothing and comfortable in behavior and never make arrogance, hurdles, aggressiveness and injuries to other pets and kids.
Training of a Norwegian forest cat is very much easy and simple because of her high intelligence level and being a quick learner. Her lively and curious nature urges her to learn something new and tricky. You can easily train your Norwegian forest cat as per your own choice, personality and life style. You can easily teach her all kinds of tasks and tricks. Remember that you can create interest and motivation in your Norwegian forest cat through playing. Learning through playing is a best formula for Norwegian forest cat training.
I hope these extra smart and distinctive characteristics of Norwegian forest cat will impress you and now you are deciding to adopt one as your next family pet.
Norwegian Forest Cat Care
A Norwegian forest cat is a low shedder and need minimum grooming. Her coat is semi-long with thick and fluffy hairs. The upper coat is smooth and glossy whilst the inner coat is woolly and water-repellent that protects her from harsh and cold Norwegian weather.
The knowledge about the coat care and shedding is very important for new breeders and owners. The thick and fluffy coat does not need frequent grooming or brushing. Daily brushing with quality metal brush require while weekly brushing is enough to avoid matting. Shedding of a Norwegian forest cat depends upon season. In winter, she shed her long thick winter coat and in summer a bit lighter summer coat shedding.
Being a sturdy and strong boned breed, both male and female Norwegian forest cat need vivacious and athletic type activities. A Norwegian forest cat care tips include proper leadership training, behavior training, good climbing posts and special care of food. Being a quick learner and a good climber, a Norwegian forest cat gets bored with routine wise tasks.
She needs something extra and challenging to quench her sporty and climbing instincts. You can also train your Norwegian forest cat as a good outdoor partner. If you ignore the climbing factor and do not allowed your Norwegian forest cat to climb on regular basis, she might become bored or short-tempered which will lead her to destructive behavior.
Being a caring and gentle pet owner, you should also take care of her food.
Regular dry food made for cat breeds are good for Norwegian forest cats too. Alcoholic beverages, chocolates, onions, raisins, grapes, salt and garlic are poisonous to Norwegian forest cats so avoid them.
Health issues of Norwegian forest cat are also a matter to consider. Kidney and heart diseases are common among this cat breed. Glycogen storage disease, Glycogen branching enzyme and perinatal hypoglycemic are also fatal disease for Norwegian forest cats.
In short, being a responsible cat breeder and owner, it is your duty to take care your Norwegian forest cat in a way that suits best for her nature, personality, behavior, health and overall fitness. Otherwise, you might lose a social, sweet, strong and gentle companion.
Norwegian Forest Cat Color Variations
- Brown Tabby (with or without white)
- Silver Tabby (with or without white)
- Blue Tabby (with or without white)
- Blue Silver Tabby (with or without white)
- Red Tabby (with or without white)
- Red Silver Tabby (with or without white)
- Cream Tabby (with or without white)
- Cream Silver Tabby (with or without white)
- Black (with or without white)
- Black Smoke (with or Without white)
- Blue (with or without white)
- Blue Smoke (with or without white)
- Tortie (including with white and smoke)
- Blue Tortie (including smoke and with white)
- Tortie Tabby (including silver and with white)
- Blue Tortie Tabby (including silver and with white)