Exotic Shorthair, Exotic Longhair & Persian Differences

You don’t know until you know!

To be concise, this is mostly about coat lengths, and a little about the 2 major Cat Show clubs in the USA. Exotic Shorthairs, ESH, are the short, plush coated version of a Persian. In every way the ESH is body wise identical to any Persian. They have the exact same standard in size, shape, and type. They are shown in separate classes and only compete if they are in a winner’s group. Recognized by both TICA, The International Cat Association, and CFA, Cat Fanciers Association.

Interestingly the kittens are born with the exact same coat length whether they are shorthair or longhair. I can usually tell them apart at about 4.5 weeks of age, when the Longhaired Persian kittens start growing coat with gusto.

The Exotic Longhair is for all intents and purposes a Persian, however the CFA club recognizes and classifies Exotic Longhairs in a separate class than Persians, while TICA considers these 2 classes the same breed of cat. CFA separates the 2 genetically and allows crossing of Exotics with Persians, but once crossed they lose the classification Persian and become Exotic Longhairs or Exotic Shorthairs pending their coat length. So, in a winners class the Exotic Longhair winner will compete with the exact same category of the winner of the Persian group. There are purists in the CFA organization that are proud to raise Persians and will not cross Exotics into their line. I won’t try to explain this logic except to say, there are some people that think Exotics genetics should not be intermingled.

I am not one of those. :]

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