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Scottish Fold History history

The Scottish Fold is a breed of cat with a natural mutation to its ears. The ear cartilage contains a fold so the ears bend forward and down towards the front of their head.

The original Scottish Fold was a long-haired white-haired barn cat named Susie, who was found at a farm near Coupar Angus in Perthshire, Scotland in 1961. Susie's ears had an unusual fold in their middle, making her resemble an owl. When Susie had kittens, two of them were born with folded ears, and one of the siblings was acquired by William Ross, a neighbouring farmer and cat-fancier. Ross registered the breed with the Governing Council of the Cat Fancy in Great Britain and started to breed Scottish Fold kittens with the help of geneticist Pat Turner. The breeding program produced 76 kittens in the first three years - 42 with folded ears and 34 with straight ears. The conclusion from this was that the ear mutation is due to a simple dominant gene. If one parent provides the gene for straight ears, and one parent provides the gene for folded ears, the kittens will be Folds.

The breed was not accepted for showing in Great Britain and Europe as it was felt that they would be extremely prone to ear problems such as infection, mites and deafness, but the folds were exported to America and the breed continued to be established there using crosses with British Shorthair and the American Shorthair
Descended from Scotland in the 1960's the Scottish Fold has been the subject of debate among some registries. The debate has been centered on the folds and whether or not it contributes to deafness in this breed. It is argued that the some of the original Scottish Folds were deaf, but not due to the folds, but rather because the deaf gene often associated with blue eyed white cats, was present in the breeding lines. Some registries, particularly the GCCF of Great Britain have still not accepted this cat due to this debate. The Scottish Fold is, however, accepted by many worldwide registries.

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Scottish_Fold".
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