Doll face Persian cats are closer to the original breed type than other Persian varieties. See how they differ from today's show Persians and why they may be slightly easier to keep as pets.
Traditional Doll Face Persians
Although organizations like the Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA) maintain one breed standard for Persian cats, there are two distinctly different types of Persians within the fancy. The main difference is in the structure of their heads.
- Doll Face Persians: According to the Traditional Cat Breed Association (TCA) this type of Persian is considered the original/traditional Persian, and they support that position through early images of the breed displayed on their website. This Persian has a normal length nose that is in proportion with the rest of its face and skull structure, yet it still has that distinctive Persian look - just not as extreme as the Persian shown at cat shows.
- Show Persian: This is the Persian described in the CFA breed standard. Its head is round with large round eyes, round cheeks and a short nose that is aligned with its eyes. In fact, the nose almost appears to be set between the eyes on some of these extreme Persians because their faces are so flat.
Compare the two images below to see just how different these two types of Persians can be.
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Doll Faces Believed Healthier by Some Breeders
Persian cat breeders who support maintaining the traditional doll face-type of Persian say health considerations are one of the strongest reasons to continue breeding for the original type. The extreme style of the show Persian's head can lead to excessive tearing, and that can lead to facial staining. A flat-faced Persian needs to have its face wiped on a daily basis to keep it clean and prevent sores from developing due to all the moisture and resulting bacteria.
Like other pets with a brachycephalic head structure, including Pekingese dogs and Pug dogs, some show-type Persians may also experience upper respiratory problems and difficulty breathing that are directly related to their extremely short noses, especially during very warm weather. Take extra care to keep these kittens out of the heat.
Due to their more normal head structure, doll face Persians typically don't face these same issues.
Doll Face Persian Kitten Breeders
The following catteries are a few examples of breeders who raise doll face Persian kittens. Check out their photo galleries to make sure this is the type of kitten you're looking for.
You'll also find a list of doll face breeders from around the world on the TCA breeders page.
LoveToKnow does not endorse any breeder and recommends that no matter who you may want to purchase a kitten from, be sure to check out each breeder thoroughly before entering any transaction. Also make sure your kitten is vet checked and comes with a written health guarantee.
Which Type Persian Kitten Is Right for You?
Except for the difference in head structure and the resulting difference in looks, both types of Persians still have luxurious coats and very pleasing temperaments. These are relatively quiet kittens that grow up to be very calm cats. Both can make wonderful, beautiful feline companions, and both still need a lot of grooming to keep their long coats in good shape. However, the show-type Persian will need the extra facial grooming on a daily basis. If you don't mind washing your pet's face each day, this won't be a problem. If you prefer not having to deal with this extra grooming, the doll face Persian may be a better pet choice for you.