Scottish Fold

Scottish Fold

The Scottish Fold is a certain breed of cat, particular due to a natural mutation that causes the cartilage in their ears to have a fold. This cartilage fold makes the small ears of the Scottish Fold to be bent forwards and downwards at the front of its head. Because of this, they have “owl-like” features. The original Scottish Fold was a white barn cat that was found in Perthshire, Scotland. The cat was called Susie and she was discovered in 1961 and what made her look special were her ears that had a fold never before seen at a cat’s ears. Initially, this breed was called lop or lop-eared, but in 1966 it adopted the Scottish Fold name which it keeps still today. However, there are some that call the Scottish Fold differently, such as Scottish Fold Longhair, Highland Fold, Coupari or Longhair Fold.

Though Susie was the first Scottish Fold, the breed only took on when it gave birth to kittens, two of which had the same genetic trait as their mother: the folded ears. One of these kittens was purchased by a farmer who lived nearby and who loved cats very much. His name was William Ross and when purchasing his Scottish Fold his first reaction was to register it as a standalone breed. Later that year he started to expand the breed, being helped by a geneticist by the name of Pat Turner. Their first breeding project, which lasted for three years, brought on 76 kittens, 42 of which had folded years. Due to this majority, the two men concluded that the folded ear was a normal mutation stemming from a dominant gene.

Since all cats of the Scottish Fold share an ancestor in Susie, it was only to be expected that future breeding will cause other malformations and mutations, as was noticed during the 1970s when several cats were born with deformities in the tails or limbs and some were discovered to be prone to infection, deafness or mites. However, people liked the Scottish Fold too much, so they didn’t give up on the breed. They were exported to America as well, and breeding was continued there, crossing the Scottish Fold with British Shorthairs and American Shorthairs. Luckily, the Scottish Fold didn’t present any more symptoms of infection or mites, though even today their ears require a bit more care due to wax buildup.

Though Susie was white, the subsequent crossing produced other colors and types of fur in the Scottish Fold, so that today they are also found to have orange or cream fur, lilac-coated or gray fur, or Scottish folds with two or more fur colors.

Scottish Fold Pictures Gallery