The name of Persian cats refers to Persia, the former name of Iran. Like many breeds, it was first developed by the English, but after WW2 American breeders became enamored with these gorgeous creatures and continued the tradition.
Persian cats are extremely docile and laid-back. They are the "couch potato of cat breeds". Those who live with Persians say these furry felines enjoy lying around the house and are generally non-aggressive and easy-going. There is a good reason for the Persian's calm personality.
Bred for its long and luxurious coat, the Persian needs a quiet temperament in order to tolerate the vast amount of grooming that goes into maintaining all that hair. When perfectly groomed, a fully coated Persian adds elegance to any surrounding.
This member of cat breeds, the Persian, is a medium-to large-size
cat with a heavy skeletal structure. The show quality example is
expected to give an overall impression of softened roundness. The head
should be massive, broad and well rounded. Facial features include
large, round eyes, a short, snub nose, and a sweet, open expression.
The ears are short and round tipped, and positioned far apart. And of
course, one of the most important features of cat breeds, that wonderful
The flat faced head structure that became popular with breeders since the 50's can cause health problems so there have been efforts by other breeders to preserve the traditional breed which has a more pronounced muzzle, hence fewer health issues. The flat face is referred to as Peke-face, named after the flat-faced Pekingese dog.
Persians are bred in so many colors and patterns that they are broken into groups called divisions. These include: solid color (blue, black, red, cream); silver/golden (chinchilla, shaded silvers, goldens); shaded/smoke (black, blue, with a brilliant white undercoat); tabby (silver, brown, blue, red, cream); parti-color (tortoiseshell and blue -cream); bi-color (any color or pattern with white); and Himalayan (color at the points). Some miniature versions were bred resulting in the Toy Persian and Teacup Persian.
The Persian is quiet, gentle and sweet in temperament. It isn't a cat that leaps onto tables or ruins furniture, but it is curious and interested in its surroundings. It rarely misses a photo opportunity and often poses for the camera. While not a talker, its large, round doleful eyes express its needs and wishes.