Harper Jefcoat
Harper Jefcoat

European Shorthair Cat - Breed Information & Characteristics

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14 min read

european shorthair

On This Page

  • European Shorthair History
  • European Shorthair vs. American Shorthair
  • European Shorthair Physical Attributes
  • European Shorthair Personality and Temperament
  • European Shorthair Care and Grooming
  • European Shorthair Health Problems
  • European Shorthair for Sale
  • European Shorthair Interesting Facts
  • Do European Shorthairs Make Great Emotional Support Animals?

The European Shorthair is mainly described as the pedigree version of Europe’s mixed-breed domestic shorthair cats. It is a friendly and fun-loving cat that is a favorite of families living throughout Europe and beyond.

Unlike other cat breeds, she is extremely docile and has a variety of personality traits. Moreover, they are fond of sleeping. If you are planning to bring these felines home, you will have to find them a cozy place that makes them comfortable.

Sometimes, they also make their way onto a human companion’s warm lap. Thus, this breed is considered perfect for anyone who wants to relax with a furry friend. Have a look at the following guide to get a detailed idea of the European Shorthair and its personality traits.

European Shorthair History

European shorthair cats can trace their ancestry back to ancient Rome. It was when Romans came to the European continent; they bought cats with them. These cats were responsible for keeping the Roman camps clear of rodents and other pests.

As people created settlements and developed farms, the cats act as reliable mousers. At that time, they were thought to be Europe’s original house cats.

Since then, European Shorthair cats were known by different names, including Celtic Shorthair cats. However, today, it is a breed of its own. On the other hand, Pedigree European Shorthair cats were created in Sweden.

It is developed to create a domestic cat with a slightly wild appearance. These features make it just like its Roman ancestors. Moreover, they are stockier than their close cousins, the British Shorthair and American Shorthair.

Even though this cat breed is different from British Shorthair cats, cat-fancy associations judged it by the same breed standards. It was until they were granted their own category in 1982.

Lastly, this breed is extremely popular throughout Scandinavia, and it is now considered one of the rarest cat breeds in Sweden.

European Shorthair vs. American Shorthair

European shorthair is quite similar to American Shorthair cat, but they do have a few differences. Check out the following table to understand the difference between American and European shorthair.

American Shorthair European Shorthair 
Native to AmericaNative to Italy
Thicker coats, longer hair, and comes in 80 different colorsThinner, sleek, shiny coat and short hair
Long face with medium-sized eyesRound faces with bright eyes
Affectionate, independent, and excellent companionsTolerant, friendly, and intelligent
Low-maintenance catLow-maintenance cat
Requires little groomingRequires little grooming
Requires 20-30 minutes of physical activity per dayRequires 20-30 minutes of physical activity per day

European Shorthair Physical Attributes

Here are some distinctive physical attributes of the European Shorthair cat breed.

  • Body

    European Shorthair cats have a medium to large size muscular body with a rounded muscular chest. Male cats weigh about 15 pounds, while females are an average of 12 pounds.

  • Head

    The head is rounded in shape and should be in proportion to the body. Moreover, the nose is firm and straight, and the chin should also be firm with no evidence of an overbite or an underbite. Male European Shorthairs have prominent jowls.

  • Eyes

    The rounded eyes of this breed of cat have different colors, including blue, green, amber gold, and brown. However, some cats have eyes in two different colors. The odd-eyed European shorthairs are generally of one blue eye and one amber eye.

  • Ears

    The ears are of medium size with rounded tips and should appear well-balanced on the head. Nevertheless, there must not be any streamers or long tufts.

  • Legs & Paws

    The legs are strong, medium-long, and well proportioned. Similarly, the paws are rounded with a strong appearance.

  • Tail

    The tail is of medium-long length with a slight taper towards the end.

  • Coat

    The coat is sleek, dense, short, shiny, and finely textured. It has a single upper layer and no undercoat.

  • Color

    The cats of Europe have coats with different colors and patterns. The paw pad and nose leather color usually complement the coat colour. Furthermore, the coat colors include red, black, cream, blue, pure white, orange, and tortoiseshell with white spots.

European Shorthair Personality and Temperament

Below are the different personality traits of the European Shorthair cats.

  • Affectionate & Playful

    If you give enough time and attention to these cats, they will be affectionate and cuddly with their humans. Otherwise, they will stay independent and keep their distance. Moreover, they are curious, intelligent and amuse themselves with different types of toys and objects. They love to enjoy daily play sessions with their pet owners.

  • Calm

    European Shorthairs enjoy long lap sessions with their owners and are considered well-balanced. However, like other cats, they also have their moment of madness when they jump and run all over the place.

  • Fearful

    They have a very good relationship with humans. Similarly, they can get attached to their humans and the place they live in easily.

  • Independent

    These cats like to have independence when they need it. They also appreciate having access to the outdoors to satisfy their hunting skills.

    Due to all these qualities, such a cat makes a great emotional support cat and support animal.

European Shorthair Care and Grooming

European Shorthairs are great self-groomers, but they do need weekly combing and occasional bathing. It will help to remove dead hairs from the coat while giving it a beautiful shine. Similarly, other maintenance includes teeth brushing, claw trimming, and cleaning the ears every few weeks. For this, you can also seek the help of a veterinarian.

Regular medical checkups are also very important to detect health concerns early. You can also keep their nails in good condition by providing them with multiple scratching posts in different locations around the home.


Here we have discussed the compatibility level of European Shorthair cats.

  • European Shorthair and Other Cats

    If European Shorthairs are raised together with other cats of the same litter, they can prove very close to each other. However, they can not be that much comfortable when it comes to kittens from separate litters, but using an introduction technique can really help.

  • European Shorthair and Dogs

    These cats will not be having any problem with the dogs if both are introduced at the early stages.

  • European Shorthair and Children

    These felines can adapt to children very easily as long as the relationship is developed with respect.

  • European Shorthair and the Elderly

    European Shorthairs are suited to all families and can easily adapt to the elderly.

European Shorthair Health Problems

Generally speaking, the European Shorthairs are healthy creatures due to their natural development. They are not prone to many diseases. But they should be vaccinated against coryza, acute leukemia, rabies, and typhus if they frequently go outside.

However, they are susceptible to the same illnesses as all other cats. They are vulnerable to periodontal diseases where prevention and dental care are recommended. Other diseases are discussed below in detail.


Unfortunately, the tendency to put on weight is the most common condition that these cats might suffer from. It can lead to excess weight because of individual or environmental factors.

The individual factors include the effects of sterilization and gender, where males become more chubby than females. Here, feeding behavior and age is also important. Remember, a cat will age much if it is not overweight, as obesity increases the risk of developing other conditions.

On the other hand, the environmental factor includes the overall lifestyle. Thus, any physical activity should be encouraged both indoors and outdoors.

The presence of other animals can also affect food intake. The quality of food also matters as compared to the behavior of the person feeding the cat. Therefore, the use of interactive bowls is highly recommended.

Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome

Many Europeans are brachycephalic, which means they have short, squished faces. With this, they can often face breathing issues. Usually, it is not life-threatening but may cause some problems for the affected cat.

Polycystic Kidney Disease

It is a serious condition where multiple cysts appear on a cat’s kidneys. It affects their normal function.

Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome

It is also known as shock lung and is called ARDS for short. In this condition, the lungs suffer severe inflammation, leading to respiratory failure and death.

European Shorthair for Sale

The European Shorthair price range is around $100-$500. Nevertheless, the price can vary depending on their bloodlines and history, but they are affordable pets.

You can easily find a European Shorthair kitten for $50 or even less. Moreover, they often sell for as cheap as $30. On the other hand, some cats with pedigree bloodlines can cost $400. If they have special qualities, they can cost more than $1000, though this is pretty rare.

Some of the other cat’s items that may affect the cost of buying this cat breed are:

  • Food bowl
  • Water dispenser
  • Cat bed
  • Litter box
  • Cat tree
  • Cat toys
  • Pet carrier or crate

European Shorthair Interesting Facts

The following are some interesting facts about the European Shorthair cat breed.

Do European Shorthairs Make Great Emotional Support Animals?

The European Shorthair is widely known as the ‘first house’ cat. It is the direct descendent of the first wild cats to be domesticated thousands of years ago. This detailed guide mentioned above will help you understand the personality traits and other characteristics of this breed.

If you are mentally disabled and planning to adopt European Shorthair as an emotional support animal, it is the right choice. These cats make extremely good house pets and tend to develop strong bonds with their owners.

Being intelligent and friendly feline, they are less demanding and easy to groom and train. Just get a valid and authentic ESA letter to keep this cat with you. This documentation will allow you to travel and live with your support cat without paying any extra charges.

In case you need a professionally written letter within just 24 hours, simply contact us at RealESALetter.com.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are European Shorthair cats rare?

FAQ Icon

The European Shorthair is one of the most popular European cat breeds. But it remains relatively rare in the rest of the world.

How do I know if my cat is a European shorthair?

FAQ Icon

If your cat has a shiny, sleek coat with a firm, rounded body and tummy pooches, then you are owning a European Shorthair.

Is European Shorthair hypoallergenic?

FAQ Icon

No, they are not hypoallergenic. Cat allergies are mostly caused by the protein called Fel d1 present in a cat’s saliva.

Are European Shorthair Cats friendly?

FAQ Icon

It is friendly with other people but not very much with other felines. The European Shorthair cat can live with other pets in the same apartment. But it is better to leave this cat as the only feline in your house. The uniqueness of its character is also expressed in its ability to quickly adapt to new conditions and people. Among your household, they can choose a leader for themselves and imitate their habits.




Harper Jefcoat


Harper Jefcoat

Harper Jefcoat is a dedicated pet enthusiast and esteemed author at RealESALetter.com. With a profound passion for animals, Harper combines extensive knowledge and personal experience to provide insightful and informative content. Specializing in canine behavior and wellness, he strives to empower pet owners with the tools and understanding they need to nurture and care for their furry friends effectively. Harper’s writings reflect his commitment to enhancing the lives of pets and their owners, making him a trusted voice in the pet community.

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