The Norwegian Forest Cat is an attractive cat with a pretty coat and good looks. This cute cat originated centuries ago in Northern Europe. It is known thus in its native lands as Norsk Skogkatt, meaning literally 'Norwegian Forest Cat'. Though it is a natural breed, it is neither a wild cat nor feral. In face it was quite common as a domestic cat in Norway before it was formally appreciated and recognized as a breed in Germany in the late nineteen thirties.
The cat's appearance is a customization to the wintry climate of Scandinavia. The coarse double layered coat protects it from cold and the large size retains warmth better as in case of the Maine Coon. In fact many consider the Norwegian Forest Cat to be an ancestor of the Maine Coon, even as the former is slightly smaller in size. Males reach close to twenty pounds in weight occasionally, with females being half that size. Coat exists in a variety of colors and patterns and is woolly underneath and glossy on the surface. Profile is straight and hind legs are longer than front legs. Face is triangular with almond shaped eyes, tufted ears and an overall expression that is quite sweet and endearing.
A slow growing breed, Norwegian Forest Cats take between four to five years before they are fully developed. They are compact and independent felines and are quite capable of moving about in the outdoors and withstanding cold climates. Their distinct bushy tail and impressive mane are not just a source of great beauty but also effective protection in low temperatures.
Intelligent and playful, the Norwegian Forest Cats share many attributes with Maine Coons. They are sweet yet not overly demanding and are quite adept at grooming and maintaining themselves, being at ease in a large household. These robust animals are good climbers and are well built for an active lifestyle.