region United States
silhouette eastern type
weight From 3 to 5 kg.
dress Traditional, all colors allowed
head Long and triangular
ear Very tall and wide at the base
tail Long and thin
federation LOOF, CFA, ACF, ACFA, TICA, World Cat Federation
The Mandarin, also called Oriental Longhair and Javanese is a breed of cat originating in the United States. This cat is the medium-long haired variety of the Oriental. Health Breeds derived from the Siamese such as the Mandarin are affected by amyloidosis. This disease leads to liver damage leading to chronic renal failure and leading to the death of the animal at term. This disease was recently discovered in cats and no genetic study has yet been carried out in order to know the mode of transmission of the disease. An analysis of the pedigrees shows however that it could be hereditary. The symptoms result in diarrhea which can be accompanied by a state of dejection and a refusal to eat. There is no treatment to cure the disease, only its symptoms. This consists of anti-inflammatory treatments and drugs used to slow the progression of kidney failure. A blood transfusion can be done in case of anemia. However, affected subjects die before the age of 5, at 3½ years on average, although a sick cat has reached the age of 11 years. Currently, veterinarians recommend an autopsy of all unexplained dead Siamese and related cats to better understand the disease.
The history of Mandarin begins with that of Oriental. Indeed, the Mandarin is one of the semi-long-haired varieties of the Oriental, directly descending from the Siamese. It was the English who brought the Siamese back from Thailand, but also other cats, with an identical physique but whose dress was not colourpoint. Legends say that there they were sacred cats or that they were raised by the king of Siam. Arriving in Great Britain at the end of the 19th century, the Siamese, much more exotic and original than the Oriental, was an immediate success while its non-pointed cousin fell into oblivion. It was only after the Second World War, when the breeding of purebred cats was at its lowest that breeders resorted to numerous crosses in order to revive or create certain breeds. This was the case of the Oriental which results from the cross between Siamese, Abyssinians, British Shorthairs, Russian Blues and alley cats. The result was a cat with an oriental type and attached to the origins of the Siamese but not pointed. He was called foreign shorthair. In the 1970s Oriental cats were imported to the United States where Siamese and American Shorthair were crossed to introduce new colors. This resulted in a "havana" brown cat, but this breed evolved differently and is currently registered under the name of havana brown. In the 1980s, Orientals and Balinese were also crossed there in order to obtain an Oriental with semi-long hair. This variety was recognized as a race in its own right under the name of oriental longhair for the CFA in 1994 and for the TICA in 1998. In Europe, they are found under the name of mandarins or sometimes Javanese. This breed is still rare in France where the LOOF registers less than 20 births per year. In 2008, the Mandarin represented only 0.07% of the total pedigree cats in France. The GCCF registers about fifty mandarin births per year out of a total of 30,000 new kittens registered each year.
The character of the Mandarin would be the same as that of the Oriental, that is to say talkative, lively, playful and very attached to its owner. Of course, the character is above all individual and depends on the history of each individual, whatever his race.