The first Scottish Fold was born in a litter in Scotland in 1961 Two years later the mother cat. Susie gave birth to two kittens with folded ears. A breeding programme was begun in Britain but when discovered that some cats with the folded ears had thickened tails and limbs (osteochondrodysplasia) the governing registration body banned them from all shows. British breeders resorted to registering their cats overseas with the main centre being the United States.
Danger of increasing this genetic fault is caused by breeding two folded ear cats together and should never be done. Originally the American Shorthair or the British Shorthair were used as breeding companions and in some cases the Scottish Shorthair (Prick/Pert/Straight eared) was used. Hopefully in the future when dna proves the straight eared litter kitten doers not carry the gene this will be allowed again.
Folded ears are due to a single dormant gene,so while some kittens will have folded ears in the litter not all of them will necessarily be Folds. Ethical breeders will never breed Fold to Fold and will always use a straight eared parent with a Scottish Fold.
This is perhaps the oldest of British breeds and traces it's ancestry back to Roman times. These cats were probably taken to England by Roman troops who would have found them useful for keeping mice away from their foodstuffs.
Shorthairs must conform to strict standards and differ quite considerably from common domestic or farm cats. Although they appeared in quite substantial numbers in cat shows at the end of the nineteenth century, they lost popularity in favour of Persian and Angora cats, specially imported for showing. In the 1930's resurgence began with selective breeding producing good quality cats with the blue-grey-British blue being highly prized. During world war 11 many owners had to give up breeding and neutered their animals. With few stud males the breed suffered till the 1950's.
The earliest recorded British cats were tabbies which are still popular especially the silver tabbies, but the Blue color cats are the best known and favorites. Black and blue are two of the older varieties which are still popular. Because an original colour was blue the breed at one time was known as the British blue but this was changed to British Shorthair when other colours such as lilac, red and carame lappeared these also included the colors in points.
British Shorthairs are robust healthy cats, with a broad round head and small neat ears set far apart. The legs are short to medium in length. It is calm and sweet natured and makes a loyal pet, very undemanding and fits well into family life