For American Wirehair Cats, The Less Grooming the Better

The American Wirehair Cat is considered a national treasure.

There are so many interesting facts about this beautiful cat! The American Wirehair is known as a very pleasant cat to have as a companion, and also requires "almost no brushing." 

  • The Wirehair's coat is distinguished from other breeds by its wiry, dense coat that is described as feeling like steel wool.
  • Wirehair has a relaxed, loving, sweet personality, making her an ideal companion for families with children 6 and older and having other pets.
  • This cat's coat may look high-maintenance, but it requires almost no brushing or combing except during the spring when old-growth sheds.

American Wirehair Cat: Breed overview

The American Wirehair is related to American Shorthairs, and both breeds are frequently crossed.

  • Size: Medium to large; males weigh 12 to 15 pounds and females weigh 8 to 12 pounds
  • Coat: Medium length comes in variety of colors
  • Color: Average, considered a talkative and enthusiastic purrer


According to VetStreet, the American Wirehair is "the product of a spontaneous natural mutation, a not uncommon occurrence in the world of cats."

"The first known wirehaired cat made his appearance in the mid-1960s in upstate New York. A cat breeder named Joan O'Shea took an interest in this twist of nature. She named him Council Rock Farm Adam of Hi-Fi and bred him to a neighboring cat that may also have carried the gene for wiry hair. The result was a litter of kittens with wiry coats. A second breeding established that the gene for a wire coat was dominant, and consultation with British cat geneticists, who examined hair samples from the cats, determined that they were unrelated to the Cornish or Devon Rex breeds. A breed was born!"

As people hear more about them, American Wirehairs are becoming more popular, especially in the United States.

American Wirehair appearance

The Wirehair's coat closely resembles the American Shorthair, except for its "crimped texture." Its coat is thick and dense and grows slighly longer during winter months. The texture is relatively hard, developed as a means of protection for her.


Hill's Pet says the American Wirehair makes a perfect companion since she is easy going. The Wirehair "will attach herself to every member of her family. They are known to bring toys to their pet parents but don't need constant attention."

What about health problems?

The American Wirehair is generally healthy, but because it can be crossed with the American Shorthair, they may develop some problems that affect that breed, including hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

Resources for reputable breeders include the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA). Ask them about the varying breeding programs and when American Wirehair Kittens may be available!

Do you live with an American Wirehair cat? Please let us know what you love about them in the comments. 

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