Personality and Temperament
Exquisite blue coats, intelligent personalities, and smiling faces make the Chartreux stand out. This old French cat breed was nearly wiped out during the first and second world wars and remains rare today.
Chartreux cats bond with their families but tend to prefer one individual over everyone else. They have a tendency to follow their favorite person from room to room, sometimes mewing or chirping softly. If you're looking for a cat with a reputation for quiet vocalizations, the Chartreux may be ideal; in fact, some Chartreux cats are mute.
The Chartreux cat requires no special diet; however, we recommend feeding a high-quality cat food with omega-3 fatty acids to promote skin and coat health.
Chartreux cats have thick, luxurious coats with a unique woolly texture. These cats require regular brushing to prevent excess shedding, hairballs, and the occasional knot.
While the Chartreux cat enjoys playing with toys and climbing cat trees, the breed isn't terribly active as a rule. You'll want to encourage play to prevent obesity, but Chartreux cats aren't prone to hyperactivity when playtime is missed.
Chartreux cats are generally very healthy and enjoy a lifespan that extends an average of 12 to 15 years. A few known health issues surface in some individuals, including patellar luxation, bladder stones, and polycystic kidney disease.
Although legend states that today's Chartreux cats are descendants of cats that were originally imported to France by Carthusian monks, the monastic order states that no archives hold records of historic use of cats resembling the Chartreux breed.
A separate legend states that Chartreux cats are descended from feral mountain cats that originated in Syria and that were brought to France in the 13th century by Crusaders. French naturalist Buffon officially describes the breed in the 18th century. The cats are renowned as excellent hunters and were highly prized by farmers for their rat-catching prowess.
Chartreux cats were nearly wiped out during the first world war. Wild populations disappeared by the end of the second world war. At the same time, European breeders worked together to prevent all-out extinction, crossbreeding with Persian, British Shorthair, and Russian Blue cats that strengthened the breed.
Chartreux cats made their way to the United States in 1971. The breed was advanced to championship status after being accepted by the Cat Fanciers Association in 1987. All cat fancy organizations recognize the Chartreux cat breed.
In France, pedigreed Chartreux cats are always given names that encode their birth year. All Chartreux cats born in the same year have official names that begin with the same letter. Code letters change annually, and rotate through the alphabet. The letters K, Q, W, X, Y, and Z are not used.
Even though the first documented mention of Chartreux cats occurred in the 18th century, their first mention occurred in 1558 in a poem by Joachim du Bellay.
The average Chartreux cat reaches adulthood by age 2; in comparison, most domesticated cats are considered to be adults by the end of their first year.
Legs & Paws
The Breed Standard
How much does a Chartreux cat cost?
Chartreux cats cost between $500-$2,500.
How big do Chartreux cats get?
Chartreux cats tend to be large in size. A fully grown Chartreux cat might weigh between 11-18 pounds or more and range in height anywhere from about 8"-11" inches tall.
How long do Chartreux cats live?
The Average lifespan for Chartreux is 11-15 years.
Do Chartreux cats shed?
Chartreux are short-haired cats. Therefore, they do not shed as much as long-haired cat breeds.