British Longhairs: Where These Personable Cats Came From

Long live the queen! The British Longhair is a unique cat breed that originated from the United Kingdom. Welcome to British Longhairs 101.

True to its name, the British Longhair cat is a semi-long-haired cat breed originally hailing from, well, Great Britain. These domestic cats were a result of crossing the longstanding British Shorthair cat with the long-haired Persian cats — yes, the British Longhair is just a version of the British Shorthair but with longer fur!

This cat breed is considered a somewhat newer breed: having only originated in Great Britain as early as the early 20th century. Somewhere between 1914 and 1918, cat breeders started by mixing British Shorthairs and Persians with creating a cat that has the temperament of the British Shorthair along with the longer hair of the Persian in mind — and ta-da! The British Longhair was born! Needless to say, the rest is history.


Inheriting some of the best traits from both their parent breeds, this longhair breed really does put the "person" in personable: these longhair kittens are super personable & friendly; just like the British Shorthair, these affectionate cats have a very pleasant temperament.

Easy going, loving, and very intelligent cats, British Longhairs are also sociable. And while British Longhairs are a social breed, they are also independent and like to have their own alone time. It's also important to note that although the British Longhair cat loves people, you shouldn't mistake them for lap cats — these felines typically don't like to be picked up or carried around, so they're better suited for a home with just adults and not young children.

Overall, this is a loyal, affectionate & friendly, and adaptable cat breed that loves people and is known for having a great calm disposition and will be tolerant towards most things!

Physical Traits

British Longhairs are medium-sized, long-haired cats who usually weigh in at around 9 to 18 pounds — they are generally a stockier cat. Just like their short coat cousins, these beautiful felines come in a variety of colors (and patterns!). While blue is the most popular color, other colors and patterns are:

? Black
? White
? Cream
? Lilac
? Bi-color
? Tabby
? Calico
? Tortoiseshell

If taken care of properly, British Longhairs have a lifespan of 12 to 17 years, so you can expect a long and happy life with your feline friend! Among many other pleasant physical features and their charming personality, these cats will also win you over with their large round eyes that come in blue, green, deep gold, or copper.

FYI: As a breed, British Longhairs can be significantly less active than other cat breeds — make sure they stay active and get enough exercise, or health issues like feline obesity will develop.

For more information on the British Longhair cat breed, visit The International Cat Association (TICA), where the breed was officially granted championship status in 2009.

Do you live with a British Longhair? Share your feline friend on our Wide Open Pets Facebook page!

READ MORE: 15 Friendliest Cat Breeds