7 Cat Breeds From Europe

| Published on April 14, 2015

Cats have been all over the world for thousands of years and different breeds have developed in different places. Here we’ll cover some unique cat breeds originating in Europe.

#1 – Birman


The origins of the Birman are relatively unknown, but it’s thought that the breed was developed primarily in France. The breed’s ancestors are though to come from Burma (now Thailand), giving the breed its name. Those cats were imported to France where the breed standard was created.

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#2 – Chartreux



The Chartreux is a domestic cat breed from France. The first Chartreux was mentioned in a1558 poem and the first documented mention was in the 18th century. The breed is rare today and not recognized by all breed clubs. They are intelligent cats that make great family companions.

#3 – German Rex

By Grx-vd-huettenwerken (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.

The German Rex was developed in Germany with a curly coat from a natural genetic mutation. There are various mentions of Rex-type breeds in Germany but the first two cats intentionally bred to create a standard were done so in 1957. They are very playful and intelligent cats.

#4 – Aegean Cat



The Aegean Cat is a naturally occurring domestic cat from the Cycladic Islands of Greece in the Aegean Sea. They are common feral cats in Greece but are also considered one of the most ancient domestic cats. The breed is a Greek national treasure.

#5 – Norwegian Forest Cat

Photo credit: Kyknoord via Flickr.


The Norwegian Forest Cat is a naturally developed domestic cat from Norway. Its long, thick coat protects it from the harsh winter environment. They were commonly used as farm cats because of their excellent hunting skills.

#6 – Turkish Angora



The Turkish Angora is an ancient, natural breed of cat from Turkey. It has been documented as far back as the 1600s and is thought to be the ancestor of many white and long-coated cats. They are playful and intelligent cats that bond closely with their owners.

#7 – Ukrainian Levkoy

By Alena Ivanchuk [GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons.

The Ukrainian Levkoy is a unique breed of domestic cat developed in Ukraine. It has little to no hair and ears that fold forward towards the face. It was created by crossbreeding Donskoy cats to Scottish Folds. They are active and intelligent cats that make excellent family companions, even enjoying the company of other household pets.