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LaPerm

LaPerm

This American breed is a curly-coated cat. It was discovered when a kitten displaying a curly-haired trait was born on a farm, confirming that this is a natural mutation. This is not a very widespread breed in Europe but one that is worth paying more attention to.

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Key facts about the LaPerm

  • Life expectancy : Between 15 and 20 years
  • Temperament : Affectionate
  • Type of coat : Short, Long
  • Price : Around £350

Physical characteristics of the LaPerm

Adult size

Female cat Approximately 12 in
Male cat Approximately 12 in

These cats reach their adult size at around 1 year old.

Weight

Female cat Between 7 and 11 lb
Male cat Between 9 and 11 lb

Coat colour

Black, white, chocolate, ginger, cinnamon as well as all dilutions grey/blue, lilac, cream, fawn etc. 
All colours are accepted.

Coat patterns

Solid / plain, tabby / striped, colourpoint, bicolour, tricolour, mink

Type of coat

Short to mid-length
Two fur types are accepted for this breed.

Eye colour

Blue/aquamarine, gold/yellow, green, dichroic eyes

Description

This curly-haired cat has a rather triangular head and ears with curly hair inside. They have a particularly soft coat with quite a thick undercoat, varying depending on fur length.

Temperament

Affectionate

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These cats, with their unique fur will show affection to those who take care of them.

Playful

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The LaPerm knows how to show off. Thanks to their strong legs they sprint and leap whenever they please.

Calm

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This breed is good at keeping people company and affectionate at all the right times.

Intelligent

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Just as smart as other cats.

Fearful / wary of strangers

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Fairly wary of strangers, your cat will be able to handle new people if they are socialised from a young age and get used to lots of people in the house.

Independent

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They appreciate some time to themselves to carry out the activities that please them, like sleeping or grooming themselves.

Behaviour of the LaPerm

Chatty

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Despite having a very soft voice, you won’t hear it very often.

Need for exercise / Sporty

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This domestic feline needs a reason to exercise. Use toys to encourage them to run and jump.

Tendency to run away

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Their natural curiosity will often mean they will spend their days gazing out the window. It is wise to put up a net or grill on your windows to avoid your cat escaping or falling.

Greedy / Gluttony

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Greediness is not a typical trait of these cats but can be a sign that your cat is bored. It is important to entertain your cat to avoid overeating.

Compatibility

LaPerm and cats

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This cat will not be delighted, initially, to see another cat in the home. But, over time, by offering them each their own living space and places to escape and hide, they will eventually tolerate one another and who knows, maybe become friends.

LaPerm and dogs

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Cats and dogs can get on perfectly well if they have time to get used to one another. The cat will need somewhere to hide or to escape to for some alone time. However, over time they will likely start to play together.

LaPerm and children

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Overly excited children who are constantly trying to play with the LaPerm are more likely to scare away the cat than to gain their confidence. But with education and supervision, a beautiful relationship can be established between them.

LaPerm and the elderly

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In general, a turbulent kitten is not advisable for an elderly person. However, breeders could offer an adult LaPerm that could adapt perfectly to an elderly owner’s lifestyle.

Price

On average, the price of a LaPerm kitten is appromately £350. The price varies according to the lineage of the kitten, the breeder, the age at the time of its acquisition or even the sex. For the monthly budget, it will cost on average £25 per month to meet their needs (litter and quality food etc.).

Grooming

It is advised to keep an eye on their ears and clean them depending on your vet’s recommendations.

Hair loss

During the seasonal moults, you should brush your cat weekly or even twice per week, depending on the length of the hair.

Nutrition of the LaPerm

A quality feed, recommended by your vet is recommended.

Health of the LaPerm

Life expectancy

Expected to live for 15 to 20 years.

Strong / robust

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Their coat and undercoat offer good protection against cold weather but less so against hot temperatures.

Tendency to put on weight

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If not active enough, they could become overweight. Seek your vet’s advice and feed your cat using an interactive bowl. This will slow down the pace at which they eat and will be more fun.

Common illnesses

The Laperm can develop the same illnesses as any other cat, such as oral diseases. Some other diseases may appear:

  • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy results in the thickening of the heart muscle, this can cause heart failure, which can result in arrhythmias, lung edema, thrombosis of an artery, etc. Screening is done by means of an echocardiography examination, which is usually renewed annually. A treatment can be administered according to the report of the ultrasound to improve the cat’s comfort.
  • Pyruvate kinase deficiency is a hereditary condition that will cause anemia if the cat is affected. Its life expectancy can be short (one year) or long (ten years), depending on the evolution of this disease. To find out, a DNA test can be performed to find out if the cat is carrying one or both alleles that can cause the disease.

Reproduction

On average there are 3 kittens per litter. It is authorised to breed short haired and mid-length haired cats.

Good to know

This breed’s name comes from the fact that it looks as though it has had a perm, just as we humans do when we want curly hair. But this cat is born with curly hair, no perm required!
They will have a total moult once in their life where they will be naked, before their fur regrows, just as curly as before!

Origins and history

To find out where this breed comes from, look to the city of The Dalles in 1982 in the state of Oregon in the United States. One of the cats on a farm was born without hair, and two months later, curly fur appeared. She was named Curly. Curly's own kittens, all males, had the same curly look as their mother. This proved that the gene responsible for this mutation,  which is natural, was a dominant gene. Breeding could begin. It was in 1996 that this breed was recognised by the TICA.

Names

Good names for LaPerm cat: Elf, Jess, Xowie, Zarla