Until recently, I never thought I had anything in common with Stefano Gabbana, the famous Italian fashion designer. While I’m not friends with Naomi Campbell and haven’t been on a yacht, my wardrobe is more budget-friendly than high-end designer fashion. However, it turns out that Stefano and I share a mutual love for a particular type of cat. Both of us have a discerning taste when it comes to our feline companions and have opted for purebred British Shorthairs. These cats are stunning creatures with beautiful blue-blooded pedigrees, amber eyes, soft fur like cashmere, and adorable teddy bear faces, which are perfect for sharing on social media platforms like Instagram. It seems that even someone as different from Stefano Gabbana as I am can share a passion for these exquisite furry companions.
The British Shorthair cat, also known as the British Blue due to its original color, has become a trendy breed among pet owners, with prices reaching up to £1,800. Even fashion designer Dolce & Gabbana recently introduced their new blue kitten, Prince, on Instagram. These cats have also become popular in advertising, with brands like Prada and Whiskas featuring them in campaigns. However, there are concerns that people are choosing cats for their looks rather than their temperament or personality, leading to more impulse buying and difficulty rehoming other breeds, such as black cats. Despite this, the British Shorthair’s appeal lies in their sweet-natured, companionable and affectionate personalities, which make them a joy to have as pets.
These felines are a hit on social media, with a whopping 3.6 million posts hashtagged #britishshorthair. They are also the most sought-after cat breed in the UK, as seen in the photo of Jennie Agg.
After conducting some research, I discovered that the British Blue Shorthair cats were the pioneers of show cats. The inaugural show was held in Crystal Palace, located in South London. Hence, when we relocated to the area, my family and I deemed it appropriate to get one as a pet. We sourced a breeder in Kent and purchased our cat, Hugo, for £800. Hugo is currently 18 months old and has a voracious appetite. We have to be mindful of his food intake, or he’ll overeat. Whenever I’m eating, Hugo sits beneath my feet, hoping I’ll drop something from my plate.
Although we let him roam outside, he never strays far from the house. My daughter, Emily, came up with the idea to create an Instagram account for Hugo- @onemanandhiscat. Despite having a few followers, it’s exciting to witness people’s responses to our posts. To maintain their fur’s quality, they remain indoors to avoid exposure to the sun’s rays.
Meet Joan Farrell, a 51-year-old IT specialist who resides in Astley, Greater Manchester, with her four lovely cats named Macy, Ruby, Dotty, and Lady Luck. In addition to her adult cats, Joan also has four kittens, one of which she plans on keeping. As a companion cat, British Blues are simply amazing. Joan’s feline pets greet her every night when she comes home from work, and they often sit close by while she works on her computer. Unlike most cats, British Blues are incredibly laid-back, low-maintenance, and easy to manage. Joan has been breeding cats for five years now, and she sells her kittens for approximately £650. In London, other breeders charge up to £900, while those who import cats from Russia or Eastern Europe to “refresh the breeding line” can charge up to £1,800. Joan loves the British Blue’s various shades of blue and their stunning copper eyes that resemble autumn leaves. Although they prefer to stay indoors as house cats, Joan has a cat run in case they ever feel the need to escape on a hot day. However, if they spend too much time in the sun, their coats may turn brown.