York Chocolate Cat Breed Guide

Chocolatey | Cuddly | Extinct. The York Chocolate cat breed was developed in the 1980s but unfortunately never really got its paws off the ground. Although they’ve been considered “extinct” for the last twenty years, there are like still a few of these cats strutting their chocolatey goodness around town, just not considered under the official breed name. Let’s take a closer look at the interesting story of the York Chocolate cat. 

YORK CHOCOLATE CAT BASICS

Average Lifespan: 10 - 18 years 

Average Weight: 4 - 7.2kg 

Coat Length: Long

Colouring: Chocolate brown

Shedding: Moderate

WHAT IS THE ANCESTRY OF THE YORK CHOCOLATE CAT?

York Chocolate Cat

The York Chocolate cat, also known simply as York, or more exotically as Il Gatto Cioccolato was first developed in 1983 by cat breeder Janet Chiefari on her New York farm. The first York Chocolate was Brownie, a semi-longhaired cat with a rich chocolate-coloured coat that was the offspring of two domestic longhaired farm cats. 

Two years later, Brownie had her own litter of chocolate kittens therefore starting the York Chocolate breed. Unfortunately the popularity of these sweet floofs never really took off and they never gained recognition by any of the major global cat fancier’s associations. 

Numbers in York Chocolates dwindled and by 2005 there were only 60 of these cats in existence causing the breed to be officially deemed “extinct”. Nevertheless, it’s likely that there are still a few of these floofs and their chocolatey children alive today although they are not officially recognised under the York Chocolate breed name. 

WHAT DO YORK CHOCOLATE CATS LOOK LIKE?

York Chocolate cats are large floofs, inheriting a muscular and stocky build from their farm cat lineage. They have a plush, semi-long coat that comes in four chocolatey colours, solid chocolate, solid lavender (light cocoa colour), chocolate and white bicolour, and lavender and white bicolour. These kitties are often born a much lighter colour than what their coat develops into at around 12-18 months of age when they fully realise their true chocolatey beauty. 

York Chocolate Kitten
Credit: xiristhecatx

PURRSONALITY OF THE YORK CHOCOLATE CAT

York Chocolate cats have a temperament as delicious as their chocolatey appearance. These guys are extremely loyal and friendly and enjoy nothing more than having their hoomans stroke their luxurious coats for hours on end…possibly with a hot chocolate in hand. With origins as farm cats, they are excellent hunters and are known to leave their owners special “gifts” on their doorstep from time to time and enjoy playtime with interactive mouse toys. York Chocolate cats are extremely affectionate and cuddly but also enjoy their independence from time to time and can be shy around strangers. However, once they warm up to you, you have a furry best friend for life.

CAN YORK CHOCOLATE CATS BE LEFT ALONE?

York Chocolate cats aren’t overly needy and can be left alone from time to time. However, if you’re not going to be at home for long periods throughout the day, consider adopting another cat to keep your York Chocolate company and out of trouble. 

YORK CHOCOLATE CAT FEEDING REQUIREMENTS

As York Chocolates come from domestic longhair stock, they have an extremely varied gene pool and tend to live long and healthy lives if fed a highly nutritious diet. They have no specific feeding requirements, so do well on a standard healthy cat diet that:

  • Is high in animal meat (at least 60%) to provide them with the essential nutrients and amino acids their bodies need to thrive. 
  • Uses high-quality all-natural ingredients. 
  • Doesn’t contain artificial nasties, additives, fillers or preservatives as well as unnecessary added salt and sugar which is unhealthy for York Chocolate cats 

Impawtent tip: Although they have chocolate in their name, like all cats you should never feed them chocolate as it is highly toxic to cats and can even be fatal! For all the details on why chocolate is so bad for cats, check out our article Can Cats Eat Chocolate?

SCRUMBLES, THE PAWFECT FOOD FOR YORK CHOCOLATE CATS

Cat with Scrumbles wet food tins

If you’re lucky enough to have one of these rare chocolate fluff balls, why not check out our extensive range of delicious, healthy and gut-friendly cat food?

Here’s why all cats including the elusive York Chocolate cats love our delectable cat dinners:

  • NATURAL: We only use high-quality ethically sourced, natural ingredients
  • MEATY: We use up to 77% real animal meat and none of the useless fluff like animal or meat derivatives.
  • DELICIOUS: Fussy cats love our delicious meaty cat dinners with all of our recipes scoring 100% on palatability testing. Just check out the thousands of pawsitive reviews.
  • HYPOALLERGENIC INGREDIENTS: We avoid common allergens such as eggs, dairy, and soy so that even the most sensitive of cats can enjoy our recipes.
  • GUT-FRIENDLY: We use gut-loving prebiotics or probiotics to strengthen your York Chocolate cat’s gut microbiome improving digestibility and reducing smelly farts and tummy upsets. 
  • NO ADDED NASTIES: We never use plant proteins or artificial additives, preservatives or unhealthy added salt and sugar. 
  • ECO-FRIENDLY: Our delectable cat dinners are served in 100% recyclable tins and eco-friendly packaging to limit our impact on the environment.

Whilst you're here, why not read:

1. Can Cats eat sweetcorn?

2. Dandruff in cats

3. Snowshoe Cat Breed Guide


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