Cat Lovers guide to the Siberian Cat

Siberian Cat: the majestic breed of the Siberian Forest

The Siberian cat, also known as the "Siberian Forest cat" is a very old breed from Russia and enjoys great popularity in their country of origin, although it is not well known outside their borders.

These cats are popular for their charm, fierce appearance, and loyal and affectionate personality. Learn more about their history, characteristics, and care here.


Origin of the Siberian cat

As their name suggests, the Siberian cat is an animal from the cold region of Siberia, Russia, which is quite possibly the main reason for their abundant fur.

The name Sibirskaja koschka (Siberian cat) was a term used to describe muscular domestic cats with dense, soft coats.

But their history goes far back in time, the theory about their origin states that these felines arose from the crossing of wild felines from the Siberian Tundra with domestic cats imported from Western Europe to Russia during the Middle Ages.

They spread all over Russia and Ukraine, being companion animals for farmers, for their housekeeping skills, catching rats and mice, but also for aristocrats who enjoyed their beauty and companionship.

The first records of the Siberian cat as a breed date back to 1871, but a standard breed was not established until more than a century later.

This is because the communist regime that ruled during the 20th century banned pets. In 1990, due to the fall of the Berlin Wall, they began to expand to countries such as France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the USA.


Physical characteristics of the cat

Size: they are a really big cat breed between 20 and 30 cm.

Weight: males weigh between 5 and 11 kg and females between 4 and 8 kg. However, they reach their final weight when they are 4 or 5 years old.

Eyes: they are quite expressive, large, and oblique, they can be blue, green, or amber.

Ears: medium size, they are tilted outwards.

Coat: their coat is their most striking feature, it is semi-long, longer around the neck which gives them that powerful appearance.

It is soft, dense, slightly oily, and with a thick undercoat. It can be brindle, blue, white, black, or silver.

Body: it is large, heavy, and compact, but muscular, long, and strong. Their head is triangular, their legs are long and muscular and their tail is long and hairy, narrower at the tip.

Life span: between 10 and 16 years.


The character of the Siberian cat

Siberian cats are calm, intelligent, and very curious.

Due to their wild origin, they are very active cats with an excellent instinct for the house, they love to exercise daily and like to explore the outdoors, if you have a garden they will be the happiest cat in the world.

They are independent but affectionate, they enjoy very much the company of their humans.

They love to be petted and cared for and get along well with children, as well as other pets, so they will have no problem adapting quickly to the home and their members.

Another very appreciated characteristic of these cats is their conversational skills because if you respond to their meows you will find yourself in the middle of an interesting conversation with them. Also, Siberian Cats have an incredible capacity for understanding.

As for socialization, Siberian kittens will be more docile if they are introduced to humans from an early age. In fact, contact with the male should be made immediately after the cessation of weaning.

You must convince your Siberian kittens that you will be the person who will take care of them. You need to cuddle them most of the time and offer them healthy food regularly so they know you are their friend.


Siberian cat care

You should know very well the Siberian cat care so you can take care of them properly and make sure they stay healthy and stimulated.

  • A weekly brushing will be enough to keep their coat in good condition, except during the shedding season when it will be necessary to brush them daily.
  • In winter, two to three weekly brushings are good to avoid knots and the usual hairballs in the stomach.
  • Baths are not recommended as it weakens the natural grease of their coat.
  • Do not cut their fur, not only it is not necessary but these cats resist very well to the cold thanks to their fur, if you cut it they will remain totally unprotected.
  • They are very active cats that need space, ideally, they should have a garden or an area of the house where they can climb, roam and even hunt to keep them stimulated.



Like all other cats, Siberian cats are also carnivores, so they require a healthy diet rich in protein and with small portions of carbohydrates.

Siberian cat experts recommend choosing wet cat food instead of kibble to keep them hydrated, but you can also offer them a more natural diet based on proteins such as chicken, lamb, pork, and beef. For a more specific diet consult your veterinarian.


Siberian cat health

They are usually in good health due to their rustic origin and the fact that they have been kept free of crossbreeding during most of their history. Therefore, it is a very strong animal, which hardly presents any health problems and is much more resistant than other breeds to the diseases that generally affect cats.

However, they can suffer from some heart conditions more frequently than other breeds, such as hypertrophic heart disease, which must be controlled to avoid a fatal outcome, and pyruvate kinase deficiency: a hereditary disease that causes non-specific anemia.

Although it will always be necessary to keep those necessary to check their general health and to keep their vaccination and deworming schedule up to date.


The Siberian cat will be the perfect pet

The Siberian cat can be a good companion animal, faithful and sociable. So if you are thinking of adopting one, it will be the perfect pet since, as it has been proven, they adapt perfectly to both low temperatures and the home, in addition to getting along with all family members.

Another advantage of owning a Siberian cat is that as an owner you will not have to worry about allergies because these cats lack the Fel D1 protein, which is a harmful bacterium found in feline saliva and transmitted to their fur when they lick themselves.