All About Havana Brown Cats

If you consider yourself a "cat person," you may have a certain color, type, or breed in mind when someone asks you for your favorite type of feline. Some people love the rich color of a raven-haired black cat, while others may prefer the aloof demeanor of a Maine Coon. Certain folks may have a breed-specific preference, like the unique and easy-to-love Havana brown cat. Quiet yet outgoing, curious, and friendly with just about anyone and anything, babies and dogs included, Havana brown cats can make excellent companion animals for anyone.

Headshot of young adult Havana Brown cat kitten, sitting and looking with green eyed sweet face to camera. Isolated on a white background.
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Origins

Havana brown cats are a rare breed, and their backstory is a long and interesting one. The first solid brown cats are believed to have been recorded around 1350 c.e. in Siam, which is now known as Thailand. These cats were admired by the people of Siam, and made their way to England sometime during the late-1800's, according to Petfinder. These chocolate brown creatures immediately made their way onto the show cat circuit, and were celebrated by many for their special coats and bright, greenish-blue eyes. Unfortunately, the green pigment eventually disqualified them from competitions, as official Siamese cats, which they were considered, were to have blue eyes according to the breed standard.

Several years later, brown cat enthusiasts continued in their quest to breed beautiful, chocolate-colored cats by mixing Siamese, domestic shorthair, and Russian Blue breeds. After years of genetic manipulation to form the perfect brown cat, Havana brown cats made their way from England to North America, and in 1959, the breed was officially accepted and recognized by the Cat Fanciers Association.

Havana Brown cat on pet bed at home
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The look

At first glance and under the wrong light a Havana brown cat may look like a black cat, but a closer look will show that Havanas are actually more of a chestnut brown color. In fact, Havana brown cats got their name for the color of their coats, which resembles the brown skin of a Havana Cuban cigar, says VCA Hospitals. They sport these short and shiny brown coats on lean, athletic bodies. Aside from their gorgeous, special coats, other physical traits people love about Havana brown cats are their beautifully expressive green eyes and attractive, symmetrical faces. Havana brown cats have long heads, wide noses, and big ears that lean forward rather than upward. Some Havana brown cats may have white whiskers, but if you're looking to show your cat for competition, her whiskers will need to be brown in order to be considered.

Size

A fully grown, adult Havana brown cat will usually weigh somewhere between 6 and 12 pounds. These cats are long, lean, and athletic in the way they look, but can be surprisingly heavy when compared to their appearance. Male Havana brown cats are usually much larger than their female counterparts, and most Havanas are well proportioned. Regardless of their gender, Havana brown cats have long, straight legs, however, the front legs of females tend to be slimmer than the athletic, muscular legs of the males, says Petfinder.

Havana Brown kitten getting out of a box, white background.
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Personality

While their looks are certainly striking, what draws most people to Havana brown cats is their winning personalities, which are generally suitable for most living conditions. Havanas are known for being smart, alert, and affectionate, and active, and have a couple of standout qualities that they are know for: pawing at their special person for attention, and talking to their people in low chirps rather than incessant meows, states Cat Fanciers Association.

Havana brown cats make great housemates, and most will get along well with other animals in the home — including other cat, dogs, and even small children and babies. Some people consider Havana brown cats to be dog-like in the way they behave, mostly for their preference for fetching items, and carrying small toys or other soft items around the house with them in their mouths. Thanks to their short coats, Havana brown cats don't need much help in the grooming department, but because they are so loving and attention-seeking, many will welcome a nice brushing or a gentle massage.