The Norwegian Forest Cats are also known as Wedgies or SkogKatts. They are gentle and mild, and most are good with children and other pets. Though slow to warm up to strangers, they are very affectionate with their owners. Natural climbers, they do have strong hunting instincts, so be sure small pets like rodents and birds are housed securely. Here’s how to identify a Norwegian Forest cat:
- Eyes. The Norwegian Forest cat is known for its almost-shaped eyes in a vivid shade of emerald green with a streak of gold. Some are more gold than green. If the Norwegian Forest Cat has been crossed with any other breed, the resulting kittens may not have these distinctive green eyes.
- Facial shape. The face of a Norwegian Forest cat is triangular. This breed has unusual ear hair which may measure up to 4 inches long. This fur gives the cat a Lynx-like appearance.
- Fur texture. This long-haired cat has a double coat. The undercoat is shed each spring. The long and silky overcoat remains on the cat all year long. These incredibly thick coats are somewhat water resistant. They may have a very full “mane” around their face, giving them a lion-like appearance. There are also tufts of fur between the pads of the feet. Both of these extra areas of fur were necessary features for the cats to survive Norwegian winters.
- Fur patterns. Norwegian Forest cats may be found with several different patterns. No matter the pattern type, this cat should have clearly defined markings.
- Tail. The tail of a Norwegian Forest cat can measure up to 12 inches long, and it is covered in long, thick hair meant to protect it during the cold winter months.
- Body size. Its body is very sturdy and muscular. The Norwegian Forest cat is a little smaller than its closest cousin, the Maine Coon, but still larger than the average housecat. The males generally weigh about 12 to 18 pounds, while females are approximately half the size of the males.
The Norwegian Forest Cat is one of the oldest cat breeds. Over 4000 years ago, this breed could be found in the forests and villages of Norway. These cats were even taken with the Vikings on their journeys. This breed is related to the Maine Coon and the Siberian cat breeds. Despite its long history, it was not officially declared a breed until the 1970s. Over the past few decades, this unique breed of cat has become more and more popular. Still, it is relatively rare, so the best way to identify a Norwegian Forest Cat is to look at the pedigree.