American Wirehair

American Wirehair

American Wirehair Characteristics

You may think that American Wirehair cats are not friendly cats because of their weird coat and eyes, but they actually tend to be calm and tolerant.  They love watching birds sitting near the windows.  American Wirehair gets along with your guests and they would interact with them.  They are a known breed but one of the rarest breeds as well. 

American Wirehairs are similar to American Shorthairs but because of the different coats they have, you can tell the difference.  These cats have a medium-sized body and have a springy, dense, and resilient coat, which distinguishes from other cat breeds.  They require family affection and loyal to human parents.  However, they are not demanding cats as they enjoy time with family but do not look for lots of attention.  

The cat owners describe them as cute and somewhat funny.  They are gentle and quiet, but also playful and active. They usually have quiet voices and generally prefer to stay indoors.   

According to Wikipedia, American Wirehairs were a result of spontaneous mutation of American Shorthair.  They were first found in upstate New York by random mutation of two barn cats in 1966.  Only one kitten survived out of five litter.  A local breeder, Joan O’Shea fell in love with the look of this red-and-white kitten with wiry fur  She bought him along and another normal female cat from the owner for $50.  She named the male cat Council Rock Farms Adams of Hi-Fi.  So, all American Wirehairs are descendants of Adam or one of his kittens, named Amy.  The population grew and cats were exported to Canada and Germany as they became popular.  CFA recognized the breed in 1967 and accepted for the championship in 1968.  Today, the breed is recognized by the four largest North American cat associations even though they are relatively rare. 

Origin: United States
Lifespan: 7 - 12 years
Size: Medium
Coat: Medium
Pattern: Multiple patterns with colorpoint
Shedding: Low
Body Colors: White, Blue, Cream, Red, Fawn, Chestnut, Chinchilla, Seal, Silver, Golden, Brown, Cameo, Bluecream, Tortoiseshell
Eye Colors: Blue, Green, Gold, Odd-eyed
Cost: $800 to $1200
Hypoallergenic? No



  • Medium-sized
  • Roundhead
  • The springy and wiry coat
  • Broad chest and sturdy build
  • Muscular neck and strong jaw
  • Large, rounded, bright, and clear eyes
  • Medium ears, slightly rounded at tips
  • Thick and strong legs

The American Wirehair is an affectionate and friendly cat who will adapt to the needs of the family 😺😊.  They are playful but not hyperactive, people-oriented, and potentially a great companion for anyone who's looking for a fur friend.  Some are lap cats and some are not but they love to spend time with you.  They would sometimes give you love bites to get your attention.  American Wirehairs are not entirely children friendly cats as you have to make sure children pet him gently with respect.  

They have a balanced temperament, which is identical to its American Shorthair relative.  They like to entertain themselves and would appreciate if you play with them too.  They like to learn new things, so, you can train them as well.  They really enjoy watching birds or squirrels sitting near your windows.  So, make sure to have a window seat for them.  American Wirehair cats tend to be quiet and often communicate their needs by expressions.   

  • Adaptable
  • Gentle and quiet
  • Playful
  • Quiet voice
  • Prefer indoors
  • Trainable
  • Requires less attention

Healthcare Tips
The Wirehair is an easy cat to maintain does not have any inherent genetic problems.  However, they can develop some health issues such as Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) due to cross-breeding with American Shorthair.  Make sure you get your fur friend from a breeder who has screened the cats for HCM.

Some breeders may claim the kittens are HCM free but no one can guarantee such a thing.  When choosing your kitten, make sure to buy from a reputable cat breeder who will provide information about the HCM screening of the breed.  If they haven't thoroughly tested for the disease and cannot provide a guarantee in writing, NEVER buy from them.  Check certified breed papers to make sure they have been tested for this disease. 

Also, protect your American Wirehair from the most common cat disease; obesity.  Keep your pet at the appropriate weight all the time by keeping them active and feeding a balanced diet.  If you need more information on how to feed your cat, check our Cat Feeding Guide

These cats need little care for grooming because of their coat.  Brushing and combing can damage it other than in Spring when the cat sheds its winter coat.  You don't need to bath them either. Since American Wirehairs prefer indoors, you don't need to worry about them escaping for outdoors.  However, just keep an eye on them in the case because if they go out, they will easily get lost.  Remember, this breed is relatively rare; so, people usually attracted to them because of the unusual coat.  Therefore, they run the risk of being stolen by strangers.  

Fun Cat Facts 

  • The first American Wirehair was born in Vernon, New York at the Council Rock Farm owned by Nathan Mosher
  • American Wirehairs are skilled hunters who enjoy chasing small birds or mice
  • Cat Fanciers Association (CFA) granted registration rights for the American Wirehair as a separate breed in 1967
  • American Wirehair has not won the 1st place in the Championship yet.  The closest was the 2nd Best Cat in 2006-2007.
  • They are low-maintenance cats

Please note that the characteristics mentioned here are based on the frequently observed traits of this breed.  Personalities and appearances of cats could vary based on the individual.  Please consult the breeder or the adoption organization for the specific details of the pet.



Cat facts 

What is the American Wirehair price?
An American Wirehair kitten could cost about $800 - $1200.  Make sure you buy one from a recognized cat breeder who provides a written health guarantee.

What is the American Wirehair lifespan?
The average life expectancy of this cat breed is about 7 to 12 years.  With proper care and attention, they could live for more than 12 years. 

Is the American Wirehair cat hypoallergenic?
No.  You may hear that Wirehairs are hypoallergenic because of the texture of their coat, but there's no scientific evidence to prove that.   

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