You’ve decided you want to get a Persian cat. Persians are cute, fluffy balls of love. There are many colors that you may choose. Some are quiet others are quite mischievous. There are Persian cats who love to climb and chase through the house but others who like to stay on the floor and curl up in a corner. So you may be surprised by your Persian’s personality. That is all well and good, but you may want to know some of the disadvantages of owning a Persian before you buy.
The Main Disadvantages of Persian Cats
1.) Grooming and maintenance of the coat
Grooming your Persian is a must. They need brushing daily to keep mats from forming in their super fine, thick coats. Also, a trim around their butts to keep poop from sticking in their hair prevents a mess that most owners would rather not have to clean.
Along with brushing, you should trim your cat’s nails. Trimming their nails prevents them from scratching you and themselves.
A bath once or twice a month will help remove excess dirt and oil build-up in their coat.
Due to the Persian’s flat faces, they are prone to have issues with their tear ducts, resulting in tears staining the fur around their eyes. This staining is something you’ll want to take care of as well. A non-toxic stain removing solution is available. Wipe their eyes daily to keep their fur from staining. Use separate wipes for each eye to prevent infection.
Clean their ears gently with a cotton ball to prevent dirt and oil build-up.
2.) Potential Health Issues
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is the most common heart issue. What is it? It’s a thickening of the heart muscle. Unfortunately, this disease is hard to spot, so regular vet visits are necessary.
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy can cause blood clots to form inside the heart. The clots can leave the heart and lodge in the main arteries stopping blood flow to the rear legs. If this happens, the cat will lose the use of both rear legs and tail. Their legs will feel cold to the touch. The cat may react in pain. An immediate visit to the vet is necessary.
This syndrome affects cats with short noses and flat faces. As a result, many cats with this syndrome can barely breathe normally, are prone to heatstroke, and have a high risk for anesthetic complications.
Polycystic Kidney Disease
This disease affects kittens born with minor cysts inside the kidneys and sometimes the liver that grows larger over time. These enlarging cysts eventually destroy the affected organ.
Vets recommend monitoring their Persian’s food carefully and prescribing fluid therapy along with specific medicines. The end goal is to keep the cat’s kidneys functioning correctly for as long as possible.
When getting your Persian, it would be good to be sure your breeder has not used a carrier of this disease to breed kittens. Of course, quality breeders wouldn’t do this, but you must be wary.
Feline Lower Urinary Tract Diseases (FLUTD)
Feline lower urinary tract disease or FLUTD is used to describe conditions that affect cats’ bladder and urethra (the lower urinary tract).
Clinical signs for these disorders are similar, so it’s difficult to determine the underlying cause without further investigation. Many diseases can affect the lower urinary tract. However, many cats develop a disease without an apparent underlying cause called feline idiopathic cystitis or FIC.
Clinical signs of FLUTD
- Dysuria – Difficult or painful urination – a cat may strain to pass urine. They may cry if it is painful.
- Pollakiuria –Increased frequency of urination. Inflammation and infection of the bladder and urethra can irritate and increase the desire to urinate more frequently.
- Haematuria – Blood in the urine. Blood in your cat’s urine can occur with infections and inflammation. Blood in the urine may be microscopic, detected by a test done by your vet. It can also be more obvious. You may see a red or pink tint in your cat’s urine.
- Periuria – Peeing outside the litter-box in unusual or inappropriate places. This behavior can happen because pain, irritation, and inflammation in the bladder or urethra cause the urgent need to urinate. Your cat may not get to the litter box or go outside in time.
- Over-grooming – The pain and irritation in the bladder and urethra may cause some cats to over-groom and lick around their perineum. This behavior may be severe enough to cause loss of hair and irritation.
- Behavioral changes – Some cats may lose their litter-box training, become aggressive, or show irritation.
- Stranguria – Blockage of the urethra. Cats may strain to pee but won’t be able to. Blockages are seen chiefly in male cats, as their urethras are longer and narrower than in female cats. It’s much harder for a male to pass a stone if that is the cause of the blockage. This occurrence is an emergency and you should take your cat to the vet immediately as it could result in death if not taken care of as soon as possible.
Cats at risk of FLUTD
- Middle-aged cats
- Neutered cats
- Overweight cats
- Cats which take little exercise
- Cats with little or no access outside
- Cats that eat a dry diet
Feline Infectious Peritonitis
Persians are more at risk for developing FIP than other breeds. FIP can cause damage to the blood vessels (vasculitis) and fluid build-up inside the abdomen or chest.
A common problem in pets whose pet parents don’t regularly brush their teeth is dental disease. Without regular brushing, your cat can develop severe dental problems.
How does this happen? It starts with food residue build-up that hardens into tartar. Eventually, it can lead to infection.
Persian cats are expensive. Persian cats can cost anywhere from $500 to $5000, depending on several factors.
- Color and Coat Quality
You must also factor in lifetime expenses for your Persian cat as well.
Keeping your Persian cat healthy should be the primary concern. A single visit to the veterinarian can cost anywhere from $35 to $250. It could cost more for your Persian as these cats need special treatment because of necessary procedures in emergencies. If your cat needed surgery, it could cost well into the thousands of dollars.
Spaying your cat helps avoid not only unwanted kittens but also some health issues as well as the chance of cancer. The cost for spaying or neutering can go as high as $130, and this is only the cost of the spay or neuter, not any other fees you might accrue.
Your food cost for your Persian can vary depending on what you feed them. Figure on about $600 annually for each cat, perhaps more.
Whether or not you groom your Persian yourself or take them to the groomer, you’ll probably have this expense monthly. In addition, you’ll still be responsible for in-between visits grooming. It can cost anywhere from $50 to $80 to have your cat groomed.
4.) Indoor only
Persian cats aren’t suited for outdoor life. Their coats can become a mess if they are left outside to their own devices. It’s okay to take your Persian out for some fresh air, but it’s a good idea to do that when you can supervise.
5.) Persian Cats Are Messy
With their flat faces, Persian cats can be quite messy eaters if they are eating out of the wrong shaped bowl. There are bowls that sit at an angle making it less messy for you and easier for your Persian. Otherwise, you’ll end up with food all over the floor. Their eyes have a tendency to water, which means that you may end up with residue on your furniture or the floor. Persians shed so the need for a lint roller on hand is a must.
Persian cats may have a long list of disadvantages, more than you might like. However, that shouldn’t change your mind about getting a Persian to share your life. They are gorgeous, loving cats that need a bit more care than some breeds. So, suppose you are willing and have the means to care for one of these fluffy kings or queens. Go for it. In that case, I hope this article helps you decide whether a Persian is for you, but I also hope that this article helps you understand what responsibilities you’ll be taking on with a Persian in your life. We would love to hear from you. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below.