When you’re choosing a new feline companion to join your home, one of the decisions you’ll need to make is whether to get a male or a female cat. There are a few differences between male and female cats in most breeds. While this is true for American Shorthair cats, the differences are not pronounced. This breed is very appealing, with a lovely personality and a charming configuration. Both males and females have pleasant round faces that seem to wear a permanent smile. They have stocky, muscular bodies and rounded paws. If you’re looking for your first cat, or want to add a drama-free new pet, this breed is for you.
American Shorthair: male vs female? This breed doesn’t have many significant differences between male and female cats except size. Female American Shorthairs are typically smaller than males. They all tend to be amiable, social, and easy to care for.
You’ve arrived on this page because you’re interested in American Shorthair cats. You want to know whether there is any advantage to getting a male cat or a female cat. Luckily, you’ve come to the right place. We can answer all your questions. Are female American Shorthairs easier to train? Are male ASH cats more friendly? Are female cats less likely to develop behavioural problems? Which will make a better pet? Read on. We’ve got all the information you need to choose between a male or female American Shorthair cat.
American Shorthair: Male Vs Female?
All cats have distinct personalities. While you can make generalisations based on factors like age, breed or sex, you can’t really predict a cat’s personality until you get to know them. In the case of the American Shorthair, I think it’s fair to say that the “breed personality” eclipses many of the differences between male and female cats.
With that said, there are some basic differences between male and female cats which do show up in American Shorthairs. The fist and most obvious is size. While male and female kittens are born more or less the same size, male cats grow a bit more rapidly and their adult size is generally bigger. The sexual dimorphism isn’t as pronounced as in some other breeds, such as the British Shorthair, but it is noticeable.
An adult American Shorthair male might get quite big. Weights of over 6 kg are common. Particularly hearty ASH boys can grow to be 9 kgs of solid, muscular tom-cat. (Anything over this really merits a chat with the vet and a change of diet, as this breed is prone to weight issues.)
Female American Shorthair cats, by contrast, generally top out at 7 kg. I have seen larger ASH girls, but not many. More normally, a female American Shorthair will weigh between 4 kg and 6 kg.
Because they’re bigger kitties, you’re going to want to size everything up. Litter-boxes, for instance, will need to bigger. The unit of measurement I use is a variable length: the cat, measured from nose to the base of the tail. A litter-box should ideally be one cat wide and a cat-and-a-half long. It’s okay for secondary litter-boxes to be smaller, but if you have more than one cat you should have a large box for each one.
The same goes for scratching-posts, beds, perching shelves and cat trees. Make sure that any elevated platforms are strong enough to hold the cat’s weight. Scratching posts must be tall enough for your American Shorthair to stretch out fully, standing on hind legs with forelegs completely stretched out. Posts will need to be bigger for male American Shorthairs.
American Shorthair Personality
The American Shorthair, as a breed, produces cats of an excellent character. The only other breed that comes close to them for ease of companionship, in my opinion, is the British Shorthair. But while the BSH tends to be rather aloof and physically distant, the American Shorthair is a lap-cat par excellence. Both genders are very cuddlesome, loving to sit on your lap and snuggle with you. I would say that the males are just a shade less keen on being picked up and hugged, but they both love to be snuggled and petted.
Read Also: The domestic shorthair cat lifespan
Differences between queen cats and toms in terms of personality are less pronounced in this breed than in many others. If they are properly de-sexed while young, the distinctions are even less pronounced. Kitty adolescence can wreak great changes, turning a friendly little tom into a loutish bully and a cheerful queen into a skittish, irritable adult. A good breeder will have neutered each kitten before you become their guardian. If by some mischance this hasn’t happened, you should get your kitten spayed or neutered as soon as you can.
In general, the rule of thumb is that female cats are more docile and tractable, while tom-cats are more prone to issues like spraying and destructive scratching. Some cat fanciers argue that it’s the other way around, with the outgoing tom-cat more apt to form a personal connection and the shyer queen more likely to resist becoming attached.
I find that properly reared and socialised American Shorthairs don’t have any of these problems. ASH toms are friendly and take well to litter-training, while females are social and amiable. Personality issues tend to emerge only when there’s a problem with the cat’s health, such as an infection or an injury.
Cats who are nursing a painful wound or a damaged joint aren’t their normal cheery selves, while cats with urinary infections or kidney stones may not be as scrupulous in their litter habits as they normally are.
In their latter years, even well-behaved cats can become fractious. Growing old is stressful enough for humans, who know more or less what’s happening; for a confused, sore, disoriented senior kitty, the process can be even more trying. They can start to act out, becoming less companionable and more likely to engage in the kind of property damage one doesn’t normally see in an American Shorthair.
I would tentatively say that this sort of phenomenon is more pronounced in male than female cats. It’s worth talking any such issues over with your vet. With proper interventions, your senior cat can regain his or her quality of life and return to something closer to that friendly ASH you know and love.
Should I Choose a Male or Female Cat?
Ultimately, it really doesn’t matter greatly with this breed. If you want a cat that won’t get too enormous, you should probably opt for a queen cat. They are smaller, have lighter frames and more delicate features, although they still have the wonderfully solid, rounded look of the American Shorthair. If you’re not particularly concerned about the eventual size of your cat, then the sex won’t matter.
Some people want to adopt a female American Shorthair as a breeding queen or a tom they can hire out for stud. Let me shut down these ambitions immediately. Unless you’re already a seasoned cat owner with a properly equipped cattery ready to go, you will not be sold an entire kitten of either sex by a reputable breeder.
If you get a cat from a less reputable breeder, your cat will not have a pedigree and you won’t be able to register any kittens as genuine pure-bred American Shorthairs. You’ll need to put in some time establishing yourself in the cat fancy as a responsible and caring cat guardian before anyone will sell you a cat that hasn’t been de-sexed.
If sex isn’t a consideration in choosing your kitten, what should you look for? A clean, well-cared-for and healthy mother with a lively litter of kittens, showing no signs of sickness or infestation. Your American Shorthair boy or girl should be curious and interested in you. Tempt the kitten with a toy or a slip of ribbon to see if he or she is suitably playful and engaged. On the whole, these will be better signs of a good fit than the kitten’s sex.