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Male vs. Female British Shorthair Cat: The Differences (With Pictures)

Nicole Cosgrove Profile Picture

By Nicole Cosgrove

male vs female fbritish shorthair featured image

Cats are undoubtedly some of the best pets you can have around the house. But there are a few differences between males and female cats for sure. So, if you’re considering adopting a British Shorthair Cat, then you might want to know how to tell the difference between the two.

Since these cats have an uncanny resemblance to one another, it’s often hard for pet owners to tell the male from the female. While these cats make a great pet for beginning cat owners, you still want to know if your cat is a girl or a boy. In this post, we’ll tell you all the differences between the male and female British Shorthair Cat.

Visual Differences

male vs female british shorthair cat side by side
Image credit: Left: Male British Shorthair: lowpower225, Shutterstock | Right: Female British Shorthair: SunRay BRI Cattery RU, Shutterstock

At a Glance

Male British Shorthair Cat
  • Average height (adult): 16 to 20 inches
  • Average weight (adult): 12 to 18 pounds
Female British Shorthair Cat
  • Average height (adult): 14 to 18 inches
  • Average weight (adult): 9 to 12 pounds

British Shorthair Cat 101

There are very few visual differences to point out between the male and female British Shorthair cats. However, the female is slightly smaller than the male and has a dainty appearance. She also has larger eyes. The female weighs in between 9 and 12 pounds and grows to between 14 and 18 inches in height. On the other hand, the male weighs between 12 to 18 pounds and grows to between 16 and 20 inches height-wise.

British shorthair cat sitting in the grass
Image Credit: Maleo, Shutterstock

This breed comes in a variety of colors, including black, brown, white, midnight blue, and even red. This breed almost became extinct before World War II, but someone noticed and started mating them again. This breed also has a lift expectancy of 15 to 17 years, which is quite a bit longer than some cat breeds.

Both females and males have the cuddly cute looks that make you just want to squeeze them. With their chubby faces, tiny noses, and button-like eyes, it’s no wonder that pet owners are adopting them everywhere.

Now that you know a bit about this breed as a whole, let’s delve into the differences between the male and female of the breed together, so you can decide which is the right cat for you.

Male British Shorthair Cat Overview

Personality / Character

The male British Shorthair is said to be a bit less reserved than the female of the breed. It also takes him less time to get used to a family and open to them. If your tom is neutered, it’s a good possibility that he’ll never show any aggression. The males of this breed tend to not show the tomcat behaviors that are common in many other cat breeds as well. In fact, if you socialize the male as a kitten, you might not have any problems with spraying or showing other territorial behavior.

British shorthair cat Silver chocolate color yellow eyes
Image Credit: lowpower225, Shutterstock


As previously stated, if you socialize your male British Shorthair as kittens, they are pretty easy to train. As with any cat, you need to keep his litter box clean and filled with the type of litter he likes for the best results. They are easily broken of bad habits as well, if you do it the right way.

Health & Care

British Shorthairs, in general, are a healthy breed. However, the male of the breed is prone to the same conditions as any other breed of cat. We’ll list the major conditions to watch out for with your male British Shorthair below.

  • Haemophilia B
  • Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM)

The male of this breed is usually healthy and of hearty stock. Many have been known to live for up to 20 years. If you see the signs of any of the conditions above in your male British Shorthair, it’s best to make an appointment with your vet right away for diagnosis and treatment.

domestic gray British Shorthair cat lies on its back and shows a bald shaved tummy
Image Credit: Lilia Solonari Shutterstock


This cat, like any other cat, can be bred with British Shorthair females after he reaches a certain age. There are no specific guidelines. However, if you don’t intend to breed the male, it’s best to get him neutered as a kitten or as soon as possible if you get him as an adult.

  • Good with dogs and children
  • Easy to train
  • May spray and be territorial
  • Can be shy

Female British Shorthair Cat Overview

Personality / Character

The female British Shorthair cat is just as loving with children as her brother is. However, she can also get moody at times and want to be left alone. The female of this breed is also a bit pickier when it comes to family members. Instead of opening up to all members of the family, she’ll pick her person and stick with them. She’ll want to define her own territory and will cuddle with the children more than the male of the breed will.

large british shorthair gray striped cat
Image Credit: DIP-500, Shutterstock


As with the male of the breed, socializing your female British Shorthair as a kitten will go a long way towards her behaving when she’s older. As with the male, make sure that the litter box is clean and filled with the type of litter she likes at all times.

Health & Care

The female is even more healthy than the male of the breed is. She can’t suffer from Haemophilia B but can carry and pass the gene onto her kittens. It is possible for her to develop HCM, but it’s extremely rare. However, she can suffer from some of the same diseases and conditions as other cat breeds, so make sure to take her to the vet regularly for checkups.

golden british shorthair cat lying on a blue sofa
Image By: SunRay BRI Cattery RU, Shutterstock


As with the male of the breed, there are no specific guidelines for breeding this cat. However, if you do choose not to breed her, it’s best to have her spayed as a kitten for her health and so you don’t end up with a litter of kittens you don’t want.

  • Good with dogs and children
  • More active later in life
  • Strong prey response
  • Takes longer to get used to families

What Should You Expect to Pay for a British Shorthair Cat?

Now that you know how to tell the difference between the male and the female of this breed, you might want to know how much it’ll cost you for each. We’ll tell you in our next section.

Price of a Male British Shorthair Cat

If you’re purchasing your male British Shorthair cat from a reputable breeder, you can expect to pay between $1,500 to $2,000 for a kitten. But, of course, it’s possible that you could pay less or even more according to the breeder you choose. In addition, it is possible you can find one of these cats at a local rescue shelter, which will cost you significantly less.

Grey British Shorthair happy cat
Image Credit: PHOTOCREO Michal Bednarek, Shutterstock

Price of a Female British Shorthair Cat

The female of the breed will run you around $1,500. That’s because the female will be spayed already. If you’re a first-time cat owner, it is recommended that you stick with a spayed female for the best results. If the breeder wants to sell you an unspayed female kitten, then it’s best for you to look for a breeder who has a better reputation.

Which Gender Is Right for You?

This concludes our guide on the differences between the male and female British Shorthair cats. While there’s some variation between the genders, there’s not enough to determine which would be the best. Their character traits are pretty much the same, as well as their health, training, and breeding. In the end, the best cat for your family is the one you fall in love with and can’t do without.

If pressed to recommend a gender for a family, we would have to go with the female, just because of her slightly higher health statistics.

Featured Image Credit: Left: Male British Shorthair Cat: Lilia Solonari Shutterstock | Right: Female British Shorthair Cat: DIP-500, Shutterstock

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