The Russian Blue Cat Breed – A Guide

Crouching grey russian blue cat with green eyes

Russian Blues aren’t your usual house cats. They’re what we call ‘introverts’ in the cat world. But worry not, once a Russian Blue cat feels comfortable with its surroundings- there’s nothing sweeter than having her around! These beautiful felines are blessed with a majestic grey/blue coat and bright, distinct eyes.

These are unique felines who absolutely love being in a routine lifestyle and to be given a little personal space every now and then. 

They’re loyal and cautious cats, so once they accept you as a cat-parent, they’ll be ever so affectionate towards you. All you have to do is keep the patience of socializing a Russian Blue- it will surely make it up to you!

An Overview of the Russian Blue Cat Breed

Height8-10 Inches
Lifespan15-20 Years
Weight8-12 Pounds
Intelligence High
TemperamentShy, introverted, affectionate
PlayfulnessMedium
ColorsBlue-Grey
Coat LengthShort
Good WithChildren, families, dogs, other cats
TraitsAlmost hypoallergenic
a russian blue cat with green eyes lying in sphinx pose

Characteristics

The most notable feature about Russian Blues is that they appear larger than their actual size, thanks to their extremely thick and soft double-coat. The double coat ensures that the feline won’t shed much, making them a perfect choice as household pets. 

They also produce a relatively lower level of glycoprotein, so people allergic to cats won’t have a lot of problems withstanding them.

The Russian Blue is a long, slender, and sleek-looking cat breed. They have a very unique triangle-shaped head with large ears, a straight nose, and a broad forehead. 

These facial features, along with her majestic appearance make a Russian Blue one of the most regal animals in the world. These felines are also widely known for having a natural smile, one that can be felt whenever it’s in a good mood.

Russian Blue cats have a very distinct and luxurious silver-blue coating, something that is quite rare among other felines. A very distinct feature of them is their beautiful and bright green eyes. Legends say, their eyes can see through your heart!

Even though they have a slender build, Russian Blue cats are naturally quite muscular and strong. 

You might not be able to notice their shoulders or necks in the depth of their dense fur, but they have a very robust and sturdy frame. These beautiful cats from Russia have the ability to run at a very high speed, partly because of their long and powerful legs. 

While it’s true that a fully hypoallergenic cat is basically a myth- some cats actually do not cause much trouble for people with cat allergies. Russian Blue is one of those breeds, so all you have to do is spend some time around her and see if the cat allergy is affecting you or not!

A very interesting feature of their eyes is that they change colors from time to time. This adds a very appealing element to their appearance as their eyes can change from yellow hue to green from time to time. 

What’s even more interesting? The kittens are born with bright blue eyes, and when they grow up, the blue gradually turns to yellow to light green to a bright, beautiful green once they reach adulthood. 

a russian blue kitten lying on carpet

History

There isn’t much controversy or mystery regarding the origin country of this cat breed — it’s in the name after all! Yes, these felines were first found in the Northern parts of Russia. It’s unclear where exactly they were found, but locals believe that these cats came from the Archangel Isles

The Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) believes that this breed descended directly from the cats owned by the then Czars, so yes, you can call them a royal heritage! 

Russian Blue cats first made it out of Russia via ship to Northern Europe, especially in the British regions. There is no accurate timeline, but it is assumed that they first migrated to England in the mid-1860s.

However, there has been no mention of Russian Blue cats or any cats of such appearance in the British folklore up until the 19th century. 

According to CFA, the Russian Blue cat first made its presence known to the world back in 1875, when they were exhibited as the ‘Archangel Cat’ in Crystal Palace, London. 

Back then, Crystal Palace was a popular place for cat shows and similar events, and it’s safe to say that the grand revealing of the Russian Blue surely helped increase its popularity all over Europe. 

This sophisticated cat breed did get famous, but it wasn’t until 1912 that they were officially recognized as the ‘Russian Blue’ breed. They were generally exhibited with other blue cats before that, but ever since they made their way to the US, it was only a matter of time before they got their own breed name. 

It took these felines some time to win the hearts of millions of cat lovers in the world, but after the Second World War, they became immensely popular. Since the ’60s, Russian Blue cats have become sweethearts in many households. 

a russian blue cat sitting on a wall

Personality

Russian Blues are one of the gentlest cats one could ever find. They’re quite affectionate and playful among the human beings they’re close with, but you simply can’t call them clingy. Instead, they are reserved cats that need some personal space for themselves. 

These cats love to spend some quality time with family members and are usually more affectionate towards one particular human being over others. 

It might sound weird, but Russian Blues have some sort of an ego, as they can feel if their affection isn’t appreciated much. In fact, that might make them feel anxious and uncomfortable. 

This cat breed is very intelligent and can find ways to keep themselves entertained. Their activities include playing with random puzzle toys, chasing lights on the floor, and exploring new places. 

They won’t mind another cat or other animals in the house, but they do like to have some alone time every now and then. 

Russian Blue cats prefer a super clean environment, and if you don’t keep the litter box clean, they’ll be infuriated. They also like to have a familiar routine when it comes to food or exercise.  

a russian blue cat with blue eyes sitting outdoors

Size

Russian Blue might appear to be slender and slim cats, but in reality, they are a robust and strong breed with a solid, muscular build. They usually weigh around 8-12 pounds in adulthood and can grow up to 10 inches in height. 

If we compare its physical abilities, we can say that they’re on par with the majestic Korat cats- since both of them are elegant, slender, and powerful.

However, if we consider the overall size, then Russian Blues fall under the ‘medium-sized’ category. They have compact muscles which enable them to stretch and run at a very fast speed. 

The neck of this feline is often hidden by its dense fur, but once it’s running in full motion, we can observe the beautiful and long neck. Interestingly enough, the neck appears to be short and thick when it’s sitting because of the fur. This feline breed might look slim, but they do feel quite heavy when you lift them.

Colors

Russian Blues are blessed with a straight, short, and plush two-layer coat. This coat has some shades of bluish-grey color and, in some cases, a silver tip. The adult Russian Blue has bright and distinct green eyes, whereas the kittens are born with bright blue eyes. 

Some of their kittens have little stripes all over their body, but these stripes gradually fade away as they grow up. Their coats are a beautiful blend of blue, grey, and silver. 

The Russian Blue cats have a slate-colored nose, and the shades of slate differs from one cat to another. Their paw pads can be different shades of pink and purple. 

Health Issues

Russian Blues live a long, healthy life if kept and fed well. They usually live from 15-20 years, and they can do quite well if left in the wild. Being a naturally occurring breed, Russian Blues do not have severe genetically developed issues. 

The main problem that the Russian blues face is obesity. They’re not the most playful cat in the world, so if the owner cannot keep them active throughout the day and only feed them from time to time- they might have to tackle issues like severe obesity. 

These felines can also develop a degenerative issue named PRA (Progressive Retinal Atrophy), which is basically a deterioration of their eyesight. 

They might also develop PKD, or Polycystic Kidney Disease, where the kidneys gradually stop working, leading to an early demise of the cat if not treated immediately.

However, apart from obesity, these diseases are not very common among Russian Blues. That being said, you should screen a kitten or an adult feline before adopting them. Also, regular checkups with vets can be useful in this regard. 

Price

Even though they’re very popular in the world, they’re not the most common cats you’ll find in a pet shop. 

As a matter of fact, you might have to do thorough research to track one of these beautiful kittens. 

Even if you find one, they’ll not come cheap. The cost is relative though, as it mainly depends on where you live and who you’re consulting with. How much do Russian Blue cats cost? To give you an idea, you should be paying anywhere around $500-$1200 for a healthy Russian Blue kitten. 

However, ‘show-quality’ cats with a proper lineage will certainly cost you more than that!

Final Words

Russian Blue cats are undoubtedly one of the most attractive cat breeds in the world. From their beautiful coat to their calm, gentle and royal nature, they’re all about sophistication. These low-maintenance cats can be an excellent companion for you if you’re patient enough!