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Persian Cat Rescue Email List
| Facts | Goals | Caring | Rescues

With their flowing coats and sweet, loving personalities, many cat fanciers consider Persian cats to be the preferred "lap cat" and the quintessential glamor cat.  Persians have long been the darlings of  the cat fancy, representing more than 60% of all cats registered.(1)  

Unfortunately, this popularity  has not escaped the notice of the commercial and back yard breeders, who may not properly train the new owners in the art of grooming and maintaining a healthy, well mannered Persian nor educate new owners in cat care and the responsibilities that cat ownership entails. Commercial and back yard breeders may also not know how, or care, to breed to maintain health and temperament.  As a result, it is estimated that as many as 80% of all purebred cats arriving at Rescues are Persians.(2)


Persian rescue  involves the rescue of  pedigreed Persian cats and related cats and "copycats". Copycats are possible purebred mixes or mutations within the stray population that produce a cat which looks like a pedigreed animal to some extent. Sometimes the physical characteristics that are elements of a breed are also found in randombred cats. For instance,  the longhair gene that causes the Persian coat is also common and not confined to the Persian breed; the gene that causes the distinctive "pointed" pattern in the Siamese or Himalayan, is also present in the randombred population; the genetic mutation that causes total or partial taillessness is also common and not confined only to Manx and Japanese Bobtails. Since most animals in rescue do not come with their registration papers and pedigrees, many Breed Rescuers often are called upon to make a close determination. Purebred rescue organizations  are usually composed of people who are expert in identifying the various breeds of cat. In more cases than not, they will give the benefit of doubt to the cat, accepting what may be a "copycat" (though unlikely pedigreed or pedigree related) in order to assure that they find a home. 

These cats may come from Animal Shelters, Humane Societies and sometimes from individuals that have no other resort than to relinquish their pet. Persian Rescues take these cats and have them vet checked for Feline Leukemia and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus Infection, spayed or neutered, vaccinated, wormed and groomed. Rescues provide temporary homes for such cats. In those cases where the rescued cat has previously acquired any problematic attitude or behavior, Rescues work with the animal to correct these problems before placement.

If you are interested  in helping foster or providing a permanent home for a Persian rescue, or in otherways supporting or participating in  Persian rescue efforts, please join the list for Persian rescue communication, the Persian Rescue Email List. Please note that many of the Persian_Rescue List  members are cat breeders who care deeply not only for their own breed, but for all breeds and for the randombred cats as well. Rescued cats are NOT used for breeding nor are they available for breeding. Also, this list is not a vehicle to place retired breeding cats - retiring cats who were previously used for breeding are not placed by their owners through this email list. It is through  organized cat fancy contacts that these breeders can provide the expertise and help most specific to the cats in need. 

Cat fanciers and breeders are best qualified to rehome the relatively few purebred cats that enter shelters, and many work very hard to accomplish this, both as individuals and as club efforts. The low incidence of purebreds entering shelters can be attributed to the cat fancy’s dedication to good breeding, careful screening of kitten purchasers, and to the principle that only the very best representatives of breeds should be bred. The vast majority of kittens are either sold with a neuter/spay agreement or sterilized before going to their new homes. Breeders involved with Persian Rescue exercise the same care in rehoming rescued cats that they do with placing their own kittens.


      Total U.S. owned cat population – 71 million (3)(3).

      Of the 71 million, 87% are already neutered or spayed by their caring owners (4)

      Total unowned/feral cat population – est. 25-40 million (5)

      Number of cats entering shelters annually – 8.3 million (6) (6) (6) (6)

      More than half of cats entering shelters are relinquished by their owners for reasons such as: a) moving b) landlord won’t allow pet; c) too many animals in household; d) cost of pet maintenance; e) owner’s personal problems; etc. (7)

      Approximately half of the cats entering shelters are unadoptable because they are too old, sick, have serious behavior problems, or are unweaned litters of unowned/feral cats. (8)

      Less than 1% of cats entering shelters are purebred (9)

It is estimated that approximately 6% of all cats are purebred. The number of purebred owned cats is growing presently because people appreciate obtaining pets with predictable size, appearance and personality, as well as cats which have been bred with emphasis on good health and good temperament.

Goals of Persian Breed Rescue:

    • to educate current and future cat owners regarding Persians and other cats, including care and maintenance

    • to promote and improve communication and networking between Persian and Allbreed Rescue  organizations and involved individuals

    • to provide information regarding Persian Rescue organizations and Persian cats in need of rescue

    • to attempt to assure loving homes for all rescued cats by providing communication between individuals who would like to  adopt a rescued cat and Rescue organizations and involved individuals

    • to promote animal welfare

Rescued Persians come from Animal Shelters, Humane Societies and sometimes from individuals that have no other resort than to relinquish their pet. Rescues take these cats and have them vet checked for Feline Leukemia and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus Infection, groomed, vaccinated, wormed and spayed or neutered, as necessary. Persian Rescues then provide temporary homes. In those cases where the rescued Persian has previously acquired any problematic attitude or behavior, Rescues work with the cat to correct these problems before placement.

In far too many cases, people give up animals because they do not understand animals basic behaviors and needs or because of "lifestyle" changes that are beyond their control.  Please do help educate others about each species or breed BEFORE they get a pet  and caution them to ONLY get a pet if they can honestly commit to that responsibility for the lifetime of the animal. If they are considering buying a whole animal as a pet, please tell them the advantages of spaying or neutering that pet. Only a very few purebred cats, as identified by knowledgeable breeders, are likely to contribute to their breed's important health, beauty and temperament characteristics. It is a rare cat that is qualified for a responsible, pedigreed breeding program! If a person is not ready to undertake the increased level of commitment to a breed which that entails, then other options are available that will still allow them the enjoyment of their chosen breed. Please ask them to consider the neutered or spayed rescue cat as one of those options!

Are you interested in cat adoption? If so,  lists of your local rescues by breed and by location are provided here so you can easily find out if there is rescue cat waiting for you.

Thanks for caring!


If you have a Rescue group that you would like to have listed on the Persian Rescue site, please fill out our electronic form so we have your information accurately. 

Please do  link your site to the Feline Rescue Network to show your support of rescue efforts. If you wish to put a link on your site, instructions are provided & a Logo Banner is offered for your use.

Please click below to find our how you can help
The Program to help our military men and women have their cats to come home to even if they don't have friends or family that can take their pets when they are called for active duty

DISCLAIMER: Please note that The Feline Rescue Network/Persian Rescue does  not have control over or any direct relationship to the sites offered as links from this site. The Feline Rescue Network/Persian Rescue  is not responsible for the content of these linked sites and is not responsible for any transactions based on contacts made through this site or any linked sites




1. _Cat Fancier's Almanac_,  March 2000, The Cat Fanciers Association, Inc
2. [1998 report from CPR, awaiting results of 1999 report]
3.  Five studies:
              85% San Diego 1994 NPA Report
              87% Santa Clara City, CA NPA 1993 
              83% Las Vegas, NV 1981 (R. Nassar; Am J Vet Res 1984;45)
              91% Tufts Univ. 4 Mass Towns 1991 (A. Rowen; Anthrozoos 1992, vol 5,3)
              87 % MSPCA 1991 (Dorr Research for MSPCA - report) - 87%
4.  The Pet Food Institute 1999 survey.
5.  National Pet Alliance studies of "back door fed cats"
6.  Study by Phil Arkow, referenced in _Companion Animal Demographics for Communities and Shelters_ , 1997,  Rowan and Patronek, editors
7.  National Council on Pet Population and Policy study, 1999
8.  Reports of shelter personnel  & NPA study on Euthanasia
9. American Humane Association Shelter Reporting Study and various purebred cat rescue organizations




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Special thanks to Pam Delabar and Anna Sadler for their advice and input.

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