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The Snowshoe Cat

Snowshoe portraitPortrait of a Snowshoe Cat

The Snowshoe cat is a large, sturdy cat with stunning coloring and a stellar personality. This is an excellent family pet that is exceptionally loving.

A relatively new cat breed, the idea for the Snowshoe cat came about in the late 1960’s when a breeder of Siamese cats found two kittens in a litter that had snow-white paws.

Since then, attempts to create a cat with the body type of an American Shorthair cat, the dark points and eye color of the Siamese, but with white muzzle and mittens has been a bit harrowing.

Apparently the genetics involved are complicated and only knowledgeable and devoted breeders continued to perfect the breed.

There are still not enough qualified Snowshoe breeders to get them accepted into the CFA, but in the last few years, interest in these wonderful cats has skyrocketed and the standard may soon be solid enough for recognition as a true breed.


Snowshoe cat descriptive wordsHow Do You Describe a Snowshoe Cat?

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Snowshoe cat seated

The personality of the Snowshoe cat is exceptional. These cats retain the talkative, bright and active characteristics of the Siamese, but are less demanding and nowhere near as loud.

Quite domesticated, the Snowshoe adapts to many environments and is easily trainable. They crave interaction and are very friendly, affectionate and demonstrative, without the aloofness of their Siamese ancestors.

Snowshoe cats are not the best choice for folks who want to be left alone, or need to leave the cat alone for extended periods. They get lonely and may become spiteful and destructive.

Snowshoes are very bright and curious and may learn to open doors and access things that you want off-limits like cabinets and drawers. They are also like high places like refrigerators and the top of an open door.

This breed is also notorious for loving water, but not just playing with the dripping faucet. There have been reports of Snowshoe cats actually happily going for a swim!

The Snowshoe is not yet recognized by the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA), the world’s largest cat organization. It is a rare pure-bred or “pedigreed” domestic cat breed.

The desirable Snowshoe color pattern is a cream or tawny body color with blue or seal points, white mittens and a white muzzle that extends up into the forehead in an inverted “v” pattern.

Lighter points like blue and lilac are accepted by some organizations, but the pale color takes away from the full effect of the ideal Snowshoe.

The coat is short and glossy with a limited undercoat. Only moderate grooming is required.

These are large, full-bodied cats that have few breed-related health issues.

Because it is active and desires interaction the Snowshoe cat is a superb family cat that does well with considerate children, dogs and other cats.

Not a good choice if they are left on their own too often. A loving and playful pet .-Snowshoe Cat Facts

Snowshoe looking up
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Snowshoe Kitten!Snowshoe Kitten!

Snowshoe kittens tend to be busy, active and noisy. They are an enormous amount of fun and have such bright, intelligent personalities, even at a few weeks of age, that they can entertain for hours.

Snowshoe kittens are born pure white and develop their coloring over a few days to weeks.

They tend to look very much like miniature adults and don’t go through much of an awkward stage, though it may take up to two years for them to fill out completely.

Young males in particular may take awhile to mature, and will look quite different at two years old with broad, masculine heads and full cheeks.

This is a fairly rare cat and breeders of pedigree Snowshoe kittens can be relatively hard to find. They can sometimes be a little pricey, especially if the markings are correct.

Snowshoe kitten standing

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Birman face

Head Shape: The head is as wide as it is long, slightly rounded and proportionate to body size. The nose should be neither broad nor pointed, and in proportion with the rest of the head. Medium size ears, slightly rounded at the tip, and broad at the base. Eyes are large, wide and bright blue in color.  

Body and Tail: Medium sized body, well muscled, powerfully built, and longer than tall. Legs are of medium length. Feet should be medium size and oval shaped. Five toes in front and four in back. The tail is average in length and shape with an average taper. It should not be whip-like. 

Beautiful SnowshoeBeautiful Snowshoe

Coat: Short in length. Accepted colors are Seal or Blue Points with a body color of  cream, tan, beige, or near white in Blue Pointed cats.

Pattern: Points on the mask, tail, ears and legs should be the same shade and well defined. They should all be of the same shade. The most desirable white face marking is in the shape of an inverted “V” from muzzle to forehead. Ideally, all four feet should be solid white with clear edges, and darker points separating the white foot color from the lighter body color, whether the cat has just white paws, or the white extends up the legs as a “stocking”.

Overall Appearance: This should be a hard-bodied and muscular cat with a long, powerful torso, and good bone.  They should feel rather heavy when lifted and be neither soft nor thin. A large cat with an athletic, agile presence and a playful personality.


Snowshoe Cat CloseupSnowshoe Cat Closeup
  • Snowshoe cats are one of only a few breeds known to enjoy water. These big-boned cats are amazingly buoyant and will even go for the occasional swim!

Snowshoe StretchingSnowshoe Stretching
Baby Snowshoe Cat

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