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Somali

Somali

An Energetic Cat

Athletic, Attentive, Energetic

Somalis are extraordinary pets. While it is interesting to learn about the breeding purpose of Somalis, their genetics actually influence health, outward appearance and behavior. Some behaviors make the Somali and some can be quite irritating! Understanding their unique needs will help you keep them healthy and will create a stronger bond between the two of you. Explore this page to learn more about where they came, which health conditions are a risk to them and how to keep them feeling their best.

Breed Details

Body:Medium long, graceful, muscular Coat:Medium length, soft, extremely fine, double-coated

Length of fur
2

1 = short - 5 = long

Grooming requirements
3

1 = little grooming - 5 = much grooming

Energy level
5

1 = low energy - 5 = high energy

Ease of training
4

1 = difficult - 5 = easy

Affection toward owners
4

1 = independent - 5 = very affectionate

Friendliness toward strangers
5

1 = shy - 5 = very friendly

Routine Care: Somalis need daily play sessions that stimulate their natural desire to hunt and explore. Keep their mind and body active or they may develop behavior issues. Cats are meticulously clean and demand a clean litter box. Be sure to provide at least one box for each cat and scoop waste daily. It is important that your cat drinks adequate amounts of water. If they won’t drink water from their bowl try adding ice cubes or a flowing fountain.

Grooming: Their longer hair will need brushing several times a week. Daily brushing may be required in the spring and fall, when shedding occurs.

Dental: Somalis often have serious dental problems with their teeth, so you'll need to brush them at least three times a week!

Ear Care: Check her ears weekly for wax, debris, or signs of infection and clean when necessary. Don’t worry—your veterinarian can show you how!

Somalis are incredibly affectionate and form close bonds with their family. Clever, curious and highly entertaining, their mischievous behavior will be the source of much laughter.

Positive Traits:

  • May remain playful as a kitten throughout her life

  • Energetic and alert

  • Excellent companion and independent

  • Good with children and other pets

  • Quirky, entertaining personality

Negative Traits:

  • Long coat needs to be brushed regularly

  • Can become chilled in cold weather

  • Can be rambunctious and rowdy, especially as a kitten

  • May want to constantly be involved in your activities

  • Easily bored and may find trouble

Whether you are considering adding a new Somali to your family or you already have one as a companion, it is important for you to know about the genetically linked diseases known to occur more often in this breed. Of course not every Somali will have these problems, but research shows your pal is more at risk than other breeds. By exploring the health concerns specific to the Somali you will become a knowledgeable and confident pet parent. Be sure to speak with your veterinarian about breed risks every time you visit and educate yourself on the most important signs to watch for at home. They're counting on you to be their health expert.

Some health issues a Somali could encounter:

Renal Amyloidosis

Pyruvate Kinase Deficiency

Blood Type

Neonatal Isoerythrolysis (NI)/Hemolytic Icterus

Increased Osmotic Fragility of Erythrocytes

The Somali is a longhaired Abyssinian cat. Somalis come in a small variety of colors, the most common being Ruddy. They have a plush and dense double coat. The hair will be longer on the ruff, britches and tail. The Somali cat's bushy tail is what earned it's nickname, the "fox cat." A natural clown with a vibrant personality, Somalis are lively and active, ready to investigate all that draws their attention. Fox cats are highly intelligent and very curious, fetching toys and opening cabinets is not uncommon activity. Somalis are very affectionate and enjoy regular interaction with others.

Consult with a veterinarian if your Somali shows signs of the following:

  • Lethargy, pale gums

  • Care

    Routine Care: Somalis need daily play sessions that stimulate their natural desire to hunt and explore. Keep their mind and body active or they may develop behavior issues. Cats are meticulously clean and demand a clean litter box. Be sure to provide at least one box for each cat and scoop waste daily. It is important that your cat drinks adequate amounts of water. If they won’t drink water from their bowl try adding ice cubes or a flowing fountain.

    Grooming: Their longer hair will need brushing several times a week. Daily brushing may be required in the spring and fall, when shedding occurs.

    Dental: Somalis often have serious dental problems with their teeth, so you'll need to brush them at least three times a week!

    Ear Care: Check her ears weekly for wax, debris, or signs of infection and clean when necessary. Don’t worry—your veterinarian can show you how!

  • Characteristics

    Somalis are incredibly affectionate and form close bonds with their family. Clever, curious and highly entertaining, their mischievous behavior will be the source of much laughter.

    Positive Traits:

    • May remain playful as a kitten throughout her life

    • Energetic and alert

    • Excellent companion and independent

    • Good with children and other pets

    • Quirky, entertaining personality

    Negative Traits:

    • Long coat needs to be brushed regularly

    • Can become chilled in cold weather

    • Can be rambunctious and rowdy, especially as a kitten

    • May want to constantly be involved in your activities

    • Easily bored and may find trouble

  • Health Concerns

    Whether you are considering adding a new Somali to your family or you already have one as a companion, it is important for you to know about the genetically linked diseases known to occur more often in this breed. Of course not every Somali will have these problems, but research shows your pal is more at risk than other breeds. By exploring the health concerns specific to the Somali you will become a knowledgeable and confident pet parent. Be sure to speak with your veterinarian about breed risks every time you visit and educate yourself on the most important signs to watch for at home. They're counting on you to be their health expert.

    Some health issues a Somali could encounter:

    Renal Amyloidosis

    Pyruvate Kinase Deficiency

    Blood Type

    Neonatal Isoerythrolysis (NI)/Hemolytic Icterus

    Increased Osmotic Fragility of Erythrocytes

  • History

    The Somali is a longhaired Abyssinian cat. Somalis come in a small variety of colors, the most common being Ruddy. They have a plush and dense double coat. The hair will be longer on the ruff, britches and tail. The Somali cat's bushy tail is what earned it's nickname, the "fox cat." A natural clown with a vibrant personality, Somalis are lively and active, ready to investigate all that draws their attention. Fox cats are highly intelligent and very curious, fetching toys and opening cabinets is not uncommon activity. Somalis are very affectionate and enjoy regular interaction with others.

  • Watch Out For

    Consult with a veterinarian if your Somali shows signs of the following:

    • Lethargy, pale gums

Somali Discussions

Share your thoughts and experiences, ask questions, or just show your love for the Somali breed here!

Select Another Breed

To view the sources for the information listed on this page, see our Cat Breed Guide References here.

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