Native Country United States of America Other Names Wire Life Expectancy No Information Available Litter Size No Information Available
Breed Appearance American Wirehairs are similar to American
Shorthairs, with the exception of a springy, wiry coat, including
ear fur, and whiskers. This coat is similar to the wire coats of
some dog breeds, such as terriers. Their fur requires little
grooming, although lighter cats may require sunblock. Wirehairs are
of a moderate, sturdy build, with round heads, high cheekbones, and
a pronounced muzzle. Females are generally smaller than males.
American Wirehairs display the full spectrum of possible cat coat
colors, although Himalayan, Chocolate and Lilac are not accepted for
competition. The Wirehair coat trait is dominant, so any breeding
between a Wirehair and another cat can produce wired kittens.
Wirehairs have golden eyes, except for some white ones that have
blue or amber eyes.
Breed Description Head: Medium in size. Broad and fairly
round. Rounded skull. Prominent cheekbones. Definite jowls in mature
males. Square, well-developed muzzle. Slight whisker break.
Moderately short nose shows a gentle, concave curve. Square,
well-developed chin. Eyes: Large, round, expressive, and
wide set. Color in harmony with coat color is preferred.
Neck: Moderately short, well-muscled. Body: Medium
to large. Broad chest. Medium in bone. Powerfully muscled.
Paw: Medium in length and bone. Well muscled. Round,
medium-sized paws; small and oval. Tail: Length in
proportion to body. Heavy from the base to the rounded tip. Carried
nearly in line with the back. Coat: Short, tight, and
even. Coarse and hard to the touch. Slightly crimped, ending in a
slight hook. Whiskers and ear furnishings are also curly. All colors
permissible except chocolate, lilac, and colorpoint. Fault: Deep
nose break. Long, pointed, or close-set ears. Color of eyes not
entirely green in Silver Wirehairs, color other than yellow in Brown
Wirehairs. Overly short or long neck. Overly thin or short tail.
Tail carried over the back. Fine, long, silky coat. Disqualify:
White lockets or buttons.
History The Wirehair's unusual coarse, prickly coat was
caused by the spontaneous mutation of a gene. In 1966 on a farm in
Verona, New York, the American Wirehair made its debut in a litter
of American Shorthairs. Its crimped, coarse coat was the result of
the spontaneous mutation of a dominant gene. The first-ever Wirehair
was a red-and-white kitten named Adam. Breeder Joan O'Shea began a
selective breeding program, crossing the Wirehairs with American
Shorthairs to avoid excessive inbreeding and to develop the breed.
The American Wirehair was officially recognized in the United States
in 1978. Wirehairs were first imported to France in 1972. Still
rather uncommon in the United States, this breed is extremely rare
Behavior This solidly built, highly active, agile, and
playful cat needs exercise to burn off its abundant energy. The
American Wirehair is social, affectionate, and gentle, demonstrating
the same excellent character as its American Shorthair relative.
Wirehair cats shed in the spring and fall like other cats, but due
to the delicate nature of the coat, they should not be brushed. They
may require bathing due to oily skin.
Health Breeders find them easy to care for, resistant
to disease, and good producers.