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A Domestic shorthaired cat (DSH) is the proper name for a shorthaired cat that does not have a pedigree or belong to a recognized cat breed.


All Shapes and Sizes: Domestic shorthaired cats are characterized by a wide range of coloring. They typically 'revert to type' after a few generations, which means they express their coats as a tabby. This can be any color or combination of colors.

American Made: The American Shorthair, however, is a pedigreed cat that is the most popular and most prevalent breed of American cat. American Shorthairs are medium to large sized cats, with powerful legs and strong paws. Their muzzle is squarish. Their coat is short, with the fur being thick, dense, and stiff to protect them from cold, moisture, and superficial skin injuries. Their coat thickens up in the winter and sheds in the spring but still remains lighter and slimmer than its close cousin, the British Shorthair.

Unpredictable Behavior: Domestic shorthaired cats exhibit a wide range of physical characteristics, and as a result, domestic shorthaired cats in different countries tend to look different in body shape and size, as they are drawing from differing gene pools. Still, they are all recognizable as cats, and any male (tom) cat could successfully breed with any other female (queen), meaning they are the same species.

A Fine American: American Shorthairs, on the other hand, are very affectionate, long-living, and disinclined to behavioral problems; they get along well with other family members, including dogs. The American Shorthair is also an excellent hunter, but its sunny and gentle disposition make it ideal for families with small children. Shorthairs tend to get overweight very easily.

Late Bloomers: An American Shorthair is not considered fully grown until 3-4 years old, when it attains the true strong athletic proportion of its breed. Males are usually larger than females and whole males have definite jowls. It is perfectly happy as an indoor or outdoor cat.

Looks aren't everything: American Shorthairs come in over a 100 different varieties of colors (blacks, whites, silvers, creams, reds, browns, blues, bicolors, tabby or solid), but their eyes, pad color, and nose will always match their coloring. Their tail tapers to a blunt tip and has no kinks. Grooming for an American Shorthair is extremely easy, all they require is regular brushing and a wipe over with a damp chamois will make the coat shine. During shedding seasons using a good shedding comb weekly helps prevent hairballs.


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