Russian Blue

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© Photo: Franziska Gabriela Waldmann, Ruskis Cattery, Tetsu Yamazaki
Photo of a Russian Blue male cat.

The Russian Blue is a breed of cat. It is named for the silver-grey appearance of its plush 'blue' double coat.


As is the case for most of today's purebreds, the exact origins of this cat are somewhat murky. The accepted theory is that the cats most probably originated from Archangel (Arkhangelsk) or the White Sea in Russia. Russian sailors probably brought the Russian Blue to England and Northern Europe during the 1860s. Among the myths surrounding the Russian Blue cat is that it is a descendant of the royal cats owned by the Russian Czars.

The Russian Blue was first shown at the Crystal Palace, in England, in 1875. The Russian Blue, or the Archangel cat as it was known in 1875, was placed in the class for blue cats. By 1912 the Russian Blue was given a class all its own.[1] Both English and Scandinavian breeders developed foundation bloodlines. The Russian Blue were imported to the United States starting in 1900. There is no recorded history of the Russian Blue being developed in the US until after World War II.

American breeders combined the bloodlines from both England and Scandinavia to create the modern Russian Blue.


The Russian Blue has a short, dense coat that is called blue but really looks more like gray, and is silver tipped. The breed should have green eyes. The head is wedge-shaped, while the body resembles that of oriental cats such as the Siamese.


Devoted, quiet and loyal to their families, Russian Blue cats may shy away from strangers. They are intelligent cats and have been known to play fetch or open doors. They are excellent family cats.