Griselian British Shorthairs


The smoke To look at one it would look like any plain coloured or tortie cat but when you part the fur it has a silver base to the coat. they are few and far between on the show bench but quite stunning. The silver gene (or inhibiotor gene) has many expressions and this is one without a pattern where the silver is restricted to the bottom third of the hair shaft.



British shorthairs can trace they ancestry back to the domestic cats of Rome and Egypt. They were kept for their physical strength and hunting ability but soon became equally recognisable by their calm and loyal manners. During the years that Rome ruled Britain, these cats mated with the local European cats to create a hardy breed that has been developed into the BRITISH SHORTHAIR.


The British Longhair is a longhair version of the shorthair. they are produced when two shorthairs that carry the recessive longhair gene are mated together, they have been known as variants for years and used to be included in the breeding/registration policy for the shorthair. We are currently in the process of trying to gain recognition for these cats in GCCF. They have a semi-longhair coat which should be dense and crisp and not soft and silky like the persian. Some breeders are actively breeding longhair to longhair to define the breed. Some of these British Longhairs are currently being shown in the household pet section within GCCF and have been received well. They come in all the same colours and patterns as the shorthair. A formal breeding and registration policy is currently being written. see links page for a link to the newly formed Northern British Long and Shorthair Cat Club (NBL&SHCC).

The British cat comes in many colours and patterns. If you think about the colours seperately from the pattern the mixture of both gives all possible colour and pattern combinations.


The original colours were black and its dilute blue, Red and its dilute cream, the chocolate gene (and its dilute lilac) was introduced in the 70's from the colourpoints via the Persian breed. The later colours of cinnamon (and its dilute fawn) were introduced via the oriental breed in the late 1980's.

White although a colour on the showbench is actually a masking gene, the cat will be one of the above colours but the white masking gene overrides this.

TABBIES - The most popular pattern is surely the tabby cat. this can be a classic tabby, a mackeral tabby or a spotted pattern. although still in its infancy the ticked tabby is also now recognised. The classic tabby is also known as the blotched tabby with lines and whirls known as oysters and butterflies. The mackeral tabby is not seen very often but is more lines than whirls. There should be three spine lines with vertical lines desending from this down the sides of the cat. the spotted pattern is mackeral based with the lines being broken into many well formed spots of colour. The pattern is represented in the colour of the cat and the ground colour under the pattern is paler giving a good contrast to show the pattern. the ticked tabby has no identifiable pattern but the coat is ticked with colour giving an even appearance over the body of the cat. All tabby marked cats can be silver based or non silver. in silver cats the pattern is also one of the colours as above with a pale silver base colour underneath.

Bi-colours are the base colour with the white spotting gene. In the show cat the expression of white should be no less than one third but no more than one half of the cat. an inverted V on the face is desirable and the tail should be fully coloured with the base colour. All the feet must be white and the pattern is desired to be symetrical. Van pattern bi-colours are realitvely rare in the British shorthair, the colour is restricted to the top of the head and tail only with three thumb print areas of colour allowed over the body. When the bi-colour is combined with the tortoiseshell the combination gives a cat that is patched with areas of both colours of the tortie and white.

The tipped cat is also genetically a tabby cat but has been bred to minimise the expression of the tabby with the colour at the tips of the hair only. It can be black (silver) or non silver (golden tipped). 


This is a mixture of a base colour and either red or cream. The coat should show an even balance of both colours with no obvious patches of either colour. In dominent coloured cats (black, chocolate and cinnamon) the colours should be mixed with red, in dilute colours (blue, lilac and fawn) the base colour should be mingled with cream.

The colourpointis also known as the himalayan or siamese gene. It is the siamese pattern on a british cat. The face or mask,  ears, tail and legs are coloured with the base colour of the cat and the body being paler, the points can also be tabby marked presenting as strips over the marked points.      the colourpoint is now also recognised with white (the bi-colour gene) and known as a colourpoint and white these are recognised in all the base colours.