The exact place and time where the first Somali appeared is not known however some researchers believe that the long coat of the cat was some spontaneous and natural mutation in the Abyssinian breed. However, genetic researches have shown that the Somali breed came into existence around the turn of the country in UK when a lot of breeders went low on breeding stock and had to use long haired cats to expand their Abyssinian breeding programs. During the late 1910s and 1940s during the saddening aftermath of the WW I and II, when hundreds of cat breeds had shrunk to near extinction, breeders had no other choice but to mix other breeds with their Abyssinian bloodlines in order to keep that breed going.
Considered the father of the Somali, Rabay Chuffa of Selene, a male cat of Abyssinian breed which was brought to the USA from UK in 1953, and which appeared on the pedigrees of a lot of Abyssinians is thought to be the father of the Somali cat breed. Almost all American and Canadian Somalis can be traced back to Raby Chuffa.
Somali cats have a loving, bright, energetic and bubbly personality. These cats are highly intelligent and active and show a real devotion to their owners. Somalis are extremely affectionate to their owners but usually extrovert, yet enjoy visitors. Somalis mix well with other pets though they keep limits.
- Activity level: 4/5 (very energetic)
- Intelligence level: 5/5 (good learners and sensitive)
- Curiosity: 5/5 (always examining things and on the hunt for something new)
- Friendliness: 4/5 (extremely loving with owners, shy and friendly with strangers)
- Vocal: 3/5 (moderately vocal)
Somalis have well proportioned bodies with firm muscular development. Male cats usually weight in at 4 to 5 kg while females are bit smaller. They have a medium length, silky and soft coat which is longer around their tummy, britches and ruff. They have a lovely fluffy full tail.
- Fur: They have a agouti pattern coat (also called “ticked) and has multiple bands of colour on each of their hair. The coat is longest in the lovely ruff and breeches.
- Eyes: They have large almond-shaped eyes in colours ranging from rich copper to green.
- Body structure: They have well-proportioned, medium-sized bodies with a strong muscular development. Their feet are strong with tufts of hair between the toes.
- Facial features: Their face has tabby markings of M on their forehead. They have beautiful large ears that are pricked forwards which gives a curious and alert expression.
- Weight: The average weight of a male cat is 4-5 kg while that of a female is 3-4 kg.
It is important to keep these cats indoors are they have poor road sense. To maintain a long, healthy and joyful life of your cat, it is very important to neuter and spay them and provide some acceptable surfaces like scratching posts to aid in their natural behavior of scratching. In order to keep them presentable, regular hair grooming is required.
These cats could experience health conditions such as Diarrhea, Fleas and Vomiting. They are mostly indoor cats so the owner of these cats must pay regular visits to the veterinarian. Somalis should be vaccinated regularly to protect them from common disease like Calicivirus and Feline Enteritis.
We have gathered this information from our breeders based on their experience with this breed. However, remember that each animal is different with its own personality and needs (just like people!), so use this information wisely.
Do you know more about this breed and want to share your knowledge with us? Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org