A sweet Scottish Fold kitten is an adorable teddy bear who will melt anyone’s heart! With their large, round faces, big, fluffy bodies, ears folded and a sweet, wide-eyed smile They seem more like tiny Teddy bears rather than your typical kitten (and that’s an interesting thing to say!
Scottish Fold breed history
Scottish Fold cats originated in Scotland during the latter half of the 20th century. Their distinct ears (which fold forwards over their heads, and gives the breed its name) appear to have evolved spontaneously as a result the genetic traits of a particular breed.
Although it’s a dominant gene, it is not all kittens will be born with fold-up ears (Fd) and the straight ears (fd) are equally typical (and normal). As the breed was in its early stages the cats were bred to the ear set that was folded and frequently two cats sporting this kind of ear would get married. But, the gene that creates these adorable ears may also be the cause of the bone disorder known as “congenital osteodystrophy,” which mostly affects Scottish Fold kittens that are the result of mating two cats all with the folded ears. A kitten that is born from this breed of breeding is about 30% chance of developing joint or bone problems.
This condition is characterized by bone lesions as well as the hardening or thickening of joints and bones, particularly in the paw, tail and knee joints. This is a condition that can be treated but it is obviously better to avoid whenever you can. Through these procedures Breeders of Scottish Fold cats have managed to restore the breed to the health of its former glory.
Scottish Fold Kitten Ears
What you might not know is the fact that not every Scottish Fold kittens have the traditional ears folded. Actually, since responsible breeders weren’t willing to risk the bone anomaly caused by the breeding of two cats that have closed ears In the average, less than 50percent of kittens possess this characteristic.
But that doesn’t mean that there is 50 percent of each litter. Some litters might contain just 1 Fd kitten (or maybe no kitten at all) Some litters may have three out of five Fd’s. It’s the nature at her most unpredictable! Additionally, there’s a range in the fold’s degree that ranges from a single loose fold to a tight , ‘triple fold.
The kittens always have straight ears. They do not begin to exhibit the bend (that will eventually be able to develop into a fold) until around three months of age… however, it’s not the end of the story. Sometimes the ears can begin to fold inwards, and then ‘change their minds’. They may end in looking like straight (or Fd) ears. However, the current debate is whether they’re really Fd at all.
However, even Scottish Fold kittens whose ears continue to fold require several weeks (usually until the kitten is three months old) before even a seasoned breeder is able to tell whether the fold will be a strict’show quality’ one or of a more looser “pet quality”.
Even though new owners can be concerned that kittens with ears that are tightly folded could have the ear, mites or other issues but this isn’t always the case. Of of course, if the kitten has ears that are folded make sure you check them frequently to make sure there aren’t any hidden surprises there!
Scottish Fold Kitten Health Issues
When you’ve your eyes set for the idea of a Scottish Fold kitten, choosing a reliable and experienced breeder is among the most crucial actions you can take.
Due to the genetic mutation which causes congenital osteodystrophy you must ensure that the parents of your kittens aren’t each other. Fd cats, which can be Scottish Fold cats with folded ears. However, it’s crucial to determine if there is stiffness or “immobility” in the tail of the kitten, and make sure it’s not unusually small.
Also, look at the legs to ensure they’re not poorly formed, extremely long, or stiff, and also that the toes don’t appear spread out. Be aware of the way your kitten moves, and stay clear of those who appear to have lameness or have a limited mobility.
Naturally, Scottish Fold kittens are similar to other kitten, so it is important to to check for the typical indications of a healthy feline’s health. This includes the parents and in the “babies”.
The signs of a healthy kitten are:
- Eyes and noses that are clear and nose, without irritation or discharge.
- Clear ears, no discharge, odor, or black “grit” (could be Ear mites).
- A clean coat with no flaking or bald spots. There is no evidence of fleas, or other parasites.
- A clean rear end, without symptoms of diarrhea, irritation or parasites.
Additionally to this, it’s an excellent idea to buy only kittens from parents who have been tested for DNA in the case of Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD) and have been certified to be free of the disease. Cats and kittens that is positive for the disease is required to be spayed or neutered and should not be used as breeding animals.
PKD is an inherited disorder and is the leading reason for cat kidney problems. It’s typically found in Oriental breeds, such as Persians and Himalayans However, it is present in American shorthairs as well as Scottish Folds. It’s a condition that’s degenerative, which means it typically isn’t noticed until the cat is between 3 to 10-years-old (on average, it’s about 7).
It’s progressive and irreversible and the numerous cysts that form on kidneys (which are what give the disease its name) aren’t treatable or removed. The only treatment that is offered is to aid in the management of the eventual kidney failure. The length of time a cat suffering from PKD lives is contingent on the severity of their health condition is in relation to the amount of cysts they’ve and how fast they develop. This isn’t something that anyone feline (or pet owner) must endure, but be sure you Scottish Fold kitten isn’t at risk.
Selecting the right Scottish Fold
The first thing to do is would like the kitten around 9-12 weeks old by the time he/she is separated from his siblings and momma. If you’re hoping to get an’show-quality’ Scottish Fold kitten, it’s likely that you’ll have wait until the kitten is at minimum twelve weeks old prior to the breeding professional is in a position to determine whether or not the fold of the ear will be accurate.
Find a Scottish Fold cat breeder, preferably nearby, to be able to visit several times if you wish. It is best to get to know the kitten in familiar surroundings.
Come to the cattery, meet the litter, look at parents, and ask the breeder any questions you may have. Ask, for example, about the health of the parents, vaccinations, and temperament.
If you like how the first visit went, you can already look out for your future Scottish Fold. You may want to come again to see the kitten at meal times or introduce him to other members of your family. So it’s a good idea if your Scottish Fold breeder lives near you. Once you have chosen a healthy Scottish Fold kitten, you can prepare for him to come to your home. There will be something for you to do!