The American Curl cat is small, graceful and lean with extraordinary curled ears and an exceptional, affectionate and people-loving personality.
The curl of the ears is an unusual mutation that does not affect the cats hearing, and American Curl cats appear to be healthy and completely normal otherwise.
When these cats are newborn kittens their ears start off just like any other cats ears, but something happens at about a week and a half into life - the ears start to curl delicately backwards and the kittens start looking more and more like little elves!
Both ears usually curl equally and there is a deliberate and artful look about them as if they were definitely not an accident.
Fortunately the rest of the cat follows suit with a purposefully pleasant personality and heart-warming charm.
The American curl is a small, light-bodied, delicate cat whose extroverted nature can be as special as its appearance.
All members of the breed can be traced back to one individual, a stray named "Shulasmith" with unusual ears discovered in California in the 1980's.
The coat can be long or short but is always silky and smooth and with no undercoat.
Not to be confused with the equally wonderful Scottish Fold, the American Curl has a backward curling ear, exposing the pink inside, while the Scottish Fold has a forward folding ear which looks like a little trap door.
The personality of the American Curl cat is very busy, curious, and a little hungry for attention.
They are quite dog-like in their desire for human interaction and approval, but delicate and graceful with a bright and sweetly cheerful personality.
Appropriately known as the "Peter Pan Cat", the Curl is unique and utterly adorable.
This is a great choice for singles who have the time to give them the attention they want, because the return on investment is remarkable with this sensitive and loving cat.
The curl forms tight bonds with all family members including kids, dogs and other cats and is a friendly little busy-body who must be in the center of the action for maximum enjoyment.
This is a very kittenish breed that remains playful and active throughout its adulthood.
Not for those who want to be left alone, or plan to leave their cat alone, the American Curl must be involved.
Recognized by the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA), the world's largest cat organization, this is a relatively uncommon pure-bred or "pedigreed" domestic cat breed.
The Curl comes in any color or pattern with white and silver being most common. The coat is unusually silky with no undercoat. Just regular grooming is desired.
These are slender, smallish-sized cats that have few breed-related health issues.
Because it is active and really desires interaction the American Curl is a superb family cat that does well with considerate children, forms strong bonds, and likes to be included in everything.
American curl kittens tend to be typical, active and playful kittens.
They are bright and friendly and actively seek out human interaction at a very young age. Strong bonds can be formed very early with this loving breed.
Kitten-proofing is definitely recommended for anyone considering adopting or purchasing any kitten.
High furniture should be off limits, caution should be taken when holding these wriggly little youngsters, particularly when carrying them across hard wood or tile floors, and spaces under counters and doors should be blocked off as they have a very strong urge to explore.
In Appearance, the American Curl kitten looks very much like a miniature adult.
When first born the ears are straight, but in about 10 days the curling begins, starting with the very tips, and by their second month of life they have the signature look of the breed.
American Curl kittens tend to quite small, and tend to grow slowly. They are a bit delicate and may need some protection from adult cats already established in the home.
This is not a very well-known breed, and they are not always readily available, so if you are looking for a pure bred American Curl kitten to buy you may have to search a bit to find an American curl breeder.
Head Shape: Modified wedge shape that is longer than wide and of medium size in proportion to body size. The nose is of medium length with a rounded, well-formed muzzle and firm chin.
Ears: There should be a minimum of a 90 degree curl to the tips of the ears, but should not curl over further than 180 degrees. The cartiledge in the ear should be firm and normally formed to at least 50% of the height. The ear should be wide at the base and normally open with the top half curved back in a smooth arc, both ears being relatively uniform.
Eyes: The eyes should be large and walnut shaped - with oval curve on top and rounded on bottom. They should be a at a slight angle and one eye width apart. The eye color should be clear and bright and any color is acceptable. With pointed coat color, blue eyes are required.
Body and Tail: The body should be slim, of medium depth, and about 1.5 times longer than shoulder height. Lean, flexible and medium boned legs with round, medium sized feet. The tail is medium in form, tapered and medium in length. Kinks in the tail are not desirable.
Coat: The coat is silky with a minimal undercoat. It should not be plush but should lay flat and smooth, Soft and varied in length.
Color and Pattern: Accepted in all recognized colors and patterns.
Overall Appearance: This should be a small, lean-bodied cat with a slim appearance. The most notable feature, of course, the remarkable curled ears, should have a natural appearance, fully functioning and attractive. A friendly, sweet-natured cat.