The American Wirehair Cat Ultimate Guide

The aesthetic crimped hair of the American Wirehair cat has gained the attention and love of many.

What is an American Wirehair cat? Considered to be one of the newest discovered breeds of cats, the American Wirehair cat has uniquely crimped hair. Its well-muscled body and lively persona has people in awe around the world.

One simply can not resist getting to know the fascinating American Wirehair cats, let alone not wanting to have one as a pet.

Here’s a detailed introduction to the American Wirehair cats to help you learn more about these delightful creatures!

Chapter 1: Introduction to American Wirehair Cats

Here is a comprehensive breakdown on all the basics about the American Wirehair cat.

History of American Wirehair Cats

The American Wirehair cats have a rather traceable and interesting history.

It was the spring of 1966, when the first American Wirehair appeared in Vernon, in upstate New York.

It was born to a pair of barn cats, amongst a litter of five.

The barn owner, Nathan Mosher was sure that this red-and-white male kitten with wiry hair was indeed very unique.

He informed a local breeder of Rex cats, Joan O’Shea, about this unusual kitten.

Mrs. Joan O’Shea bought the kitten for 50 dollars along with another normal-coated female kitten from the same litter, intending to establish a breeding programme.

The wirehaired male was Council Rock Farms Adams of Hi-Fi (‘Adam’ for short) while the female named Tip-Top.

When the two cats were bred:

A litter of kittens with wiry hair were born.

British Cat geneticists examined the hair samples of these kittens and concluded that this was an entirely new breed.

In 1967, the Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) registered and recognized the American Wirehair as a new and independent breed.

Soon enough:

In 1978 the American Wirehair was accepted in the cat championship competition.

Ever since then, the American Wirehair has been securing a position in the top 25 best cats.

Originating from the USA, these cats are now popular in a number of countries, including:

  • Canada
  • Germany
  • Australia
  • Britain

Size of American Wirehair cats

The American Wirehair is a medium-sized cat, despite the fact that its body appears to be slightly longer as compared to its overall size.

It has a well-proportioned, well-muscled, and slender body.

The weight of the cat varies with gender but generally lies between 8-15 pounds.

The weight and body size of male and female American Wirehair cat are as follows:

  • Males: Slightly larger in size as compared to females (12-15 pounds)
  • Females: Smaller than males but can gain weight easily (8-12 pounds)

Physical Appearance of American Wirehair cats

Structurally, the American Wirehair cats can be described as medium-sized, muscular, and solid.  Their body is slender and slightly elongated as compared to the height.

The females tend to be smaller than males.


They should not be perceived as weak and frail due to the difference in size.

They have medium-length legs with round, tight, and compacted paws.

Its tail is in proportion to the body. The tip is neither blunt or pointed.

Set on its strong neck, the head is broad with a prominent and strong chin.

The well-developed cheeks with curly whiskers are a distinguishing feature of the American Wirehair.

They have medium-sized ears which are widely set and have slightly round tips.

The eyes of the American Wirehair are large and round that turn slighlty upward.

The color of the eye varies with coat color but generally, their eye color is pure and brilliant.

Some common eye colours of the American Wirehair are:

  • Deep blue
  • Golden
  • Odd eyed (one green and one blue)
  • Green

The American Wirehair has a soft steel-wool like coat which comes in a variety of colors such as:

  • White
  • Blue
  • Platinum
  • Red
  • Cream
  • Golden
  • Chestnut
  • Silver
  • Golden
  • Tortoiseshell
  • Bluecream
  • Fawn

The American Wirehair cats also come in different color combinations and their coat patterns include:

  • Solid Color
  • Bicolor
  • Tortoiseshell
  • Calico
  • Tabby
  • Smoke
  • Shaded

The powerful body structure and the distinctive crimped coat gives the American Wirehair a charming and unique look.

American Wirehair’s coat

The American Wirehair is born with dense, crimped hair.

The American Wirehair is named after its unusual but exceptionally beautiful crimped coat.

The hair is springy and wiry which being tightly packed may feel hard except for the hair under the chin and on the belly.


The unique coat also prevents American Wirehair from health issues like:

  • Shedding
  • Hairballs

The strong coat also saves the worry of lengthy grooming sessions!

The Personality of American Wirehair cats

The American Wirehair cats have a rather interesting personality.

These small, adorable creatures possess and exhibit extensively diverse characteristics.

Some of their primary traits are:

  • Playfulness
  • Faithfulness
  • Affection
  • Adaptability

The American Wirehair are very lively in nature.

Due to their playful and sporty nature (even in their senior years), they are referred to as “athletic cats”.

In terms of activity and energy:

They never seem to age.

It is due to their inquisitive and intelligent nature that the American Wirehair have a deep interest in their surroundings.

They spend a great deal of time in exploring the environment, as a result of which they can also learn a few tricks such as opening doors or cabinets.

These cats are highly interactive.

They will not annoy you with excessive meowing because they know how to communicate through expressions really well.

The American Wirehair tends to be incredibly people-oriented and affectionate.

In addition to that:

It happens to be a dedicated and loyal pet.

The American Wirehair develops a deep bond with its owner and owing to its social nature, likes to be talked-to.

The alert and adaptable nature of the Wirehair cats makes them great pets for people of all ages and even for families with children.

Unlike many cats, the American Wirehair are tolerant towards environmental, dietary, and routine changes.

They are moderately active and do not demand excessive attention.

My top 5 recommended food products for American Wirehair Cats

I’ve had American Wirehair cats for well over 2 years now and I’ve tried around a dozen cat food products.

Here are my top 5 food products for American Wirehair cats :

Chapter 2: Care for American Wirehair  Cats

The moderately active and typically healthy American Wirehair cat demands little care and attention in terms of body maintenance.

How to care for American Wirehair  cats? Grooming is the first and most essential task which involves maintenance from nails to ears. Next is the cleaning of the litterbox to ensure hygienic atmosphere. Lastly, are regular visits to the vet to keep a check on your cat’s health.

Here we have compiled a comprehensive care-guide to further assist you in taking the best possible care of your feline friend. Read on and explore your majestic American Wirehair!

Need for Care in American Wirehair

Pets are dependent upon their owners for care and this specific characteristic sets them apart from all other animals.

Pets who are neglected are unable to take care of themselves which results in serious health issues.

Even more:

Neglect has a deep psychological effect on their mind which leads to drastic behavioral changes.

Presence of the following traits in your pet’s actions is a sign that your cat feels neglected:

  • Hyper Activity
  • Aggression
  • Attention Seeking

In order to raise a healthy cat, one must fulfill his responsibility and provide the pet with its required care.

Grooming American Wirehair cats

Generally, American Wirehair cats require little care especially in regard to their coat.


A short grooming session is essential to raise a healthy and clean cat. The fundamental cat-care includes:

  • Hair Brushing
  • Nail Clipping
  • Ear Cleaning
  • Bath
  • Litter box
  • Vet visits

Coat Care for American Wirehair

Grooming refers to the cleaning and maintenance of a cat’s appearance.

It is necessary to not only make your cat look neat and tidy but to keep it away from infections and diseases.

The very first task is to brush your cat’s coat.

American Wirehair cats are known for their unique crimped hair and thus are usually found to have a short and dense coat.

The coat might feel rough and hard due to tightly crimped hair which resemble a wire. To maintain this exceptional coat, hair brushing must be done once a week only.

To brush, make sure your cat is relaxed then gradually make it sit in your lap and gently stroke. Use an appropriate cat brush or comb with soft bristles or else the cat’s skin might get scratched.

I use this one and my cat loves it!

Hair brushing must be done regularly as it removes dead hair and dust particles from the cat’s body.

The coat remains shiny and blood circulation is stimulated.

Moreover, the sebum is spread evenly all over which protects skin and fights germs.

During winters:

American Wirehair cats tend to shed more hair than in summers hence hair brushing should be increased to twice a week.

Cleaning Nails & Ears of Your American Wirehair

Next task is nail clipping which is a bit technical.

To cut the nails:

Firstly you will have to gently press the upper and lower pink portion of the paw.

The nails will spring out and by using a cat nail clipper, you can easily cut the sharp ends of the nails.

Do not cut deeply for the nerve endings may be damaged!

For indoor cats like the American Wirehair, nails should be trimmed once a week.

If nails are left untrimmed:

Then the cat might cause unintentional harm to the owner or itself. Also, untrimmed nails remain dirty and become a cause of infections.

Ears are a sensitive part of a cat’s body.


Remember to regularly clean their ears once a week.

To clean them:

Moisten a cloth or cotton ball with water or cat ear cleaner and softly rub the upper part of the ear.

This prevents the growth of ear mites in the cat’s ears and keeps it healthy.

Bath Time

Bathing your cat is perhaps the most demanding grooming task of all.


You need not worry for the bathing session is to be conducted once a month as too much bathing can reduce the quality of American Wirehair’s unusual wiry coat.

To bathe your cat:

Purchase a good quality and reliable cat shampoo along with a washcloth and towel.

Make sure that before giving the bath:

Your cat has been through a quick grooming session.

Then fill a tub with 3 to 5 inches of lukewarm water.

After that:

Place your cat in the tub and with the help of a mug or cupped hand, pour water over your cat (while avoiding its face and ears).

Beware that your cat might panic or show signs of fear from water thus you need to be extra gentle while maintaining a firm grip on it.


Massage a small amount of shampoo on the fur and after about two minutes, rinse it thoroughly.

If you’re wondering which shampoo is the best for American Wirehair cats, then it’s this all-natural shampoo from EarthBath.

You need to clean the cat’s face with a washcloth and then dry the cat using a towel.

Do not expose your cat to cold air or outdoors right after the bath or your cat might catch a cold or get dirty again.

Turn off the fans, air conditioning system, and shut the windows and doors.

Use a blow-dryer on your wet cat and keep your American Wirehair wrapped up in its towel or a dry cloth.

Once the cat’s coat is dry, brush it to prevent entanglement.


Your cat definitely cannot use a toilet so it is compulsory for you to get a litter box and clean it up daily.

There are many types of litter available at pet stores.

Consult a vet to select a suitable one for your American Wirehair.

You must place the litterbox in an isolated area so that a sense of privacy retains with the cat.

It can get really stinky and unhygienic if you do not scoop up the litter daily. Hence, every day get rid of used litter and dispose of it properly as well as replace the used one with a fresh one.

Wash the scooper after every use.

You may even want to add a little baking soda to the litter tray. It reduces odor till you change it.

Every week:

Empty the entire litter tray, wash it and replace it with new litter.

Vet Visits for American Wirehair

Similar to a human baby, an American Wirehair kitten also needs to be vaccinated and taken to a monthly vet visit.


As the kitten turns into an adult cat, these visits are minimized to once a year.

In the early stages, a kitten can be sensitive and can easily catch deadly diseases.

Check whether your cat has been vaccinated against the following diseases:

  • Rabies
  • Feline Leukemia

A vet can not only provide a health checkup but guide you through the different stages of a cat’s life.

It’s best if you contact a vet as soon as you start raising a kitten and consult only that particular vet from whom your cat has been vaccinated.

Chapter 3: Feeding American Wirehair Cats

The American Wirehair cat is a delicate breed, but quite fascinatingly, it has no special dietary requirements which are to be followed.

This easy-going breed proves to be super easy to feed and raise!

What is the healthiest food for American Wirehair  Cat? Healthiest meals are enriched with proteins and contain all the other nutrients in an appropriate amount. An American Wirehair can be fed with commercially available food as well as with a home-made meal.

American Wirehair cats are lively and playful who enjoy their mealtimes.

To make these meals healthy and fun, it is important to understand what their body needs.

Read on further to know your cat better!

Nutritional Requirements

An American Wirehair may be specific about its meals and may tend to eat meat a lot, considering its ancestry is from carnivores.


Too much meat can lead to an imbalanced diet and health issues.


You must make sure that your cat receives all the nutrients essential for a healthy life.

There are four main nutrients that a cat requires:

  • Proteins
  • Fats
  • Vitamins and Minerals
  • Fiber

Although these nutrients remain constant throughout a cat’s life, their proportion varies with age.

For example:

A kitten needs more protein than an adult.

Proteins are available in various sources but the best are fish, chicken, and beef or turkey.

These types of meat can easily be broken down by cats and provide high energy.

An essential animal protein that cats require is Taurine which maintains healthy cardiovascular movements and visual reflexes.

Fats like omega-3 and 6 are good for their nervous system and can be found in fish or fish oil.

Cats do not rely much on carbohydrates for energy like humans do and can obtain the desired amount of energy from protein sources.

Vitamins A, D, E, K and minerals like Zinc, Magnesium, Calcium, Sodium and many more are all required by cats but in minute amounts.

Best sources of these are vegetables like broccoli and fruits like apples.

These vitamins and minerals each have a specific function and ensure sound health development of your cat.

Fibers are vital to prevent hairball accumulation in your cat’s stomach because they tend to groom themselves a lot.

A great source of fiber is pumpkin but in small amounts.

Meal Preparation for American Wirehair Cats

Majority of people prefer to feed their cats commercially prepared food but you can even prepare one at home!

You need to ensure that you fulfill your cat’s nutritional requirements, that too in the right proportion.

Protein and fat sources must be 20% to 30% and must be boiled properly.

Sources of fiber like cooked pumpkin should be present between 2% to 4%.

Excessive fiber can cause difficulty in egestion. Others nutrients should be present in minutes amounts between 0.5% to 1%.


Ensure that your cat’s diet doesn’t only consist of dry or wet foods.

It should be balanced with half wet and half dry foods.

Keep on making slight changes to the composition of its food to keep mealtimes interesting for your cat.


Always provide clean and fresh water to your cat to prevent dehydration.

Feeding an American Wirehair Kitten

A kitten may prove tricky to feed especially once it’s 6 to 7 weeks old and independent from its mother.

Unlike an adult cat:

A kitten frequently requires a protein-rich diet.

They are developing rapidly at this stage and the increased number of nutrition-enriched meals helps them to cope with the energy consumed in bodily changes as well as super-active metabolism.

You should select a high-quality canned food for your kitty with more proteins and fewer fats.

Avoid giving too much dry food for they are still nibblers at this point and may face difficulty in chewing.


Try free feeding your kitten because the constant availability of food eliminates the factor of over-eating and hence, saves your kitten from obesity.


Feed your kitten 3 to 4 times a day in small amounts.

There are a few things you should certainly not feed your kitten with, including:

  • Raw meat
  • Milk
  • Raw Fish

Treats for American Wirehair

The nutrients required by a cat are similar to those of a human, but does that mean that a cat can eat human food, too?

Of course not!


They can be given human food in the form of occasional treats.

As mentioned before:

A cat’s good health is directly linked with the proportion of nutrients it receives.

Therefore, never give your cat too much human food treats or else it may lead to health issues like diarrhea.

Nicely beaten raw eggs provide high energy and are rich in proteins, but they also contain a considerable amount of phosphorous which, if given in excess, can be harmful to your cat.

Fruits like banana, apples, and cantaloupe can also be given as treats.

However, these fruits should be peeled or else your cat might have difficulty in digesting them.

Remember that the treats your cat is given are no more than 20 calories and must not contain any sort of seasoning.

You can mix different human foods and create a special treat but it should make up to 20 calories only.

If you prefer buying commercially manufactured cat treats, then examine the Nutritional Table printed on the packaging carefully and do consult your vet about what types of treats are suitable for your cat in consideration of its history.

Chapter 4: Training American Wirehair Cats

According to research, like dogs, cats are also capable of obeying commands such as sitting, going to bed, and performing simple tricks.

Isn’t that what every cat owner wishes for?

So, how to train your American Wirehair Cat? With patience and treats, training a cat is quite easy. Understand your cat and provide it with puzzle and dangling toys. Place a clean litter tray for it every day and put its bed in its favorite place. Make sure you do not punish your cat in any case!

American Wirehair cats can adapt to their surroundings easily which means that training them isn’t really hard.

Read on further to get to know how to raise a trained and obedient cat!

Training your American Wirehair to sit

Training your cat to sit at your command requires patience and understanding.

It will not learn in one go.

You will have to keep trying and repeating the training sessions for about a half hour every day. Train your American Wirehair cat in a room which it is comfortable to sit in.

Make sure the room is free from all sorts of distractions as they get distracted easily.

Before you start the training, comfort your cat by patting it a few times. Sit next to it so that when you say ‘sit’, it obeys without hesitation.

Also, use a commanding voice to address your American Wirehair but do not use a harsh tone.

In order to train your cat to sit, repeat your command a number of times by saying “[your cat’s name], sit” and when it sits, reward it with nutritious treats.

Another method is to train your cat with treats.

Position your hand with the treat just above the Wirehair’s head.

When it tries to see the treat in your hand:

It will automatically sit down in order to keep its balance and when it sits, say the command word simultaneously.

Repeat this again and again until your American Wirehair learns to sit without treats.

Take note that you should not punish your American Wirehair if it does not learn to do something or if it does not obey you.

Punishing your cat can stress it and also can harm its mental health which, in turn, will also affect its training in a negative way.

If you punish your cat:

It may not learn the trick at all.


Reward it often, and reward it with its favorite treats only when it succeeds in obeying your command.

Training your American Wirehair for entertainment

The American Wirehair cat is famous for its high level of intelligence which is why it is likely for it to learn tricks faster than expected.

To make it learn tricks quickly, you may provide it with puzzle toys and upon successful understanding of a toy, reward it with treats.

Since American Wirehair cats prefer staying indoors, teach your Wirehair a few indoor games.

For example:

You can play ‘hunting games’ with your cat by dangling a soft toy in front of him and pulling it away quickly.

This way, it will learn how to play ‘grab’ games. In a few days, you will notice that it can grab the toy faster than you pull it away.


American Wirehair Cats tend to learn ‘fetch games’, and opening doorknobs quite easily.

Playing fetch games with your pet cat is quite interesting and totally harmless, but when it comes to opening doorknobs, things can take a dangerous turn.

You should be careful with what you keep inside the cabinets within the reach of American Wirehair Cats. Make sure you do not keep stuff like:

  • Medicines
  • Detergents
  • Insecticides

It is important to keep substances like these away from your cats reach in order to prevent any unfortunate consequences.

Time for bed

Training your cat to sleep in its bed, can be tricky sometimes. However, it is important to develop this habit in your cat because it is a very common complaint of the cat owners that they find their cat sleeping in dangerous places like:

  • The washing machine
  • The fireplace
  • Under the sofa

Sometimes, owners also find out that their cat had been sleeping under the car.

To train your American Wirehair cat to sleep in its own bed, firstly, you must know where it likes to sleep. For example, your American Wirehair may prefer sleeping:

  • In a bed without a roof
  • In a basket
  • In a fully covered bed

In any case, you should choose the bed type accordingly.


You should also consider your cat’s favorite place for sleeping.

If your American Wirehair prefers sleeping by the door, put its proper bed at that place.

When you notice that it is sleepy, show it to its bed. If you do this a few times- voila!

Your American Wirehair now knows where to sleep.

Take note that it will probably change its favorite place after a while.

Litter Training Your American Wirehair

To train your American Wirehair cat to use the litter tray, you’ll have to show it to the litter tray every hour when it is awake.

Make sure you put the tray in a quiet corner of the room, away from its food.


If the litter tray is dirty, your American Wirehair cat won’t use it.


You should clean and refill the tray at the end of every day.

Your cat would prefer a tray which contains:

  • Soil
  • Wood pellets
  • Clay

Teaching your cat where to go for relieving itself is not that difficult, but you must know that all cats have accidents.

You must clean up their mess and scrub the floor with water and a disinfectant.


Make sure that you spray the place with an odor remover because if your cat can smell the mess, he will probably have another accident in the same spot again.


If you are planning on buying an American Wirehair kitten, choose one from a breeder who has already had his kitten potty-trained.


You should know that young Wirehair kittens watch and learn from their mother as well. If they watch their mother use the litter tray, they will quickly learn that when they want to go, they should also use the litter tray.

Chapter 5: The Temperament of American Wire Cats

Along with its even temperament and lovable personality, the American Wirehair cat is also ideal for households with children and other pets.

Do American Wirehair cat have an aggressive temperament? No! The American Wirehair are famous for their calm and stable temperament. They are highly adaptable to a variety of conditions and do well in households with children and other pets.  They are also quite calm.

In order to raise your American Wirehair in the best possible manner and to determine whether it is suited to your lifestyle or not, it is important to know the temperament and behavior of your cat in detail.

Playfulness in American Wirehair

There are two major distinguishing features of the American Wirehair breed; its crimped hair and its playful and joyful nature.

This breed is often referred to as “Athletic cats” due to their tendency to play for long time periods.

Though, they do not demand excessive attention.

The American Wirehair cats are highly intelligent and inquisitive.

They love exploring their environment.

Consequently, these cats learn a number of tricks such as opening and closing doors and windows.

To keep them busy and healthy:

It is important to engage them in different exercises and provide them with challenging toys such as:

  • Treat Mazes
  • Interactive Puzzle Box games
  • Automatic rotating laser toys
  • Treat ball games

Interaction with People

Different breeds of cats have different kinds of bonding and interaction with humans.

Some do not appreciate human-touch or attention while some may get depressed without it.


In order to generalize a pet cat’s behavior towards humans, its interaction with people is studied.

These people include:

  • Children
  • Adults
  • Strangers

The American Wirehair is a joyous and a family-oriented cat.  It has a special fondness for children, especially those who are a bit older.

This is because older children can treat the cat respectfully and according to its requirements.


The American Wirehair cat, or in fact any cat, should not be left alone with a toddler to avoid any unfortunate circumstances.

These cats are physically affectionate so they are fond of patting the eyes or glasses of their owners with their round, soft, and fluffy paws.


The American Wirehair might even lick the owner’s hand or shower them with tiny kitty kisses on the face.

They tend to greet humans with light head-bumps.

American Wirehair likes to participate and get involved in whatever activity their owner is busy with.

Since the American Wirehair is not very vocal, it does not irritate its owners with constant or high-pitched meowing.

Rather, they have a soft, chirp-like meow and occasionally purr and make trill-like cooing sounds.

It is not particularly a lap cat. Instead, it prefers to sit next to people.

The American Wirehair cats are categorized as stranger-friendly cats as they tend to greet guests or visitors with a curious glance and playful approach. They are not the kind to hide under the bed at the sight of a stranger.

Interaction of American Wirehair with other animals

The American Wirehair cat is a friendly and adaptable cat.

They are known to have a dog-like personality and hence, do not appreciate being left alone.

Perhaps, this is why they put up really well with other pets and animals, including:

  • Hamsters
  • Birds
  • Fish
  • Cat-friendly dogs
  • Other cats

Usually, small-sized animals awaken a cat’s predatory instincts. However, this is not the case with American Wirehair cats.

If small-sized pets like hamster, fish, birds, hamster, etc. are introduced to the American Wirehair at a young age, it develops an understanding towards them.


If they are raised together, they even establish a friendly bond and prove to be companionable for each other.


The American Wirehair are also skilled at adjusting with cat-friendly dogs like Basset Hound, Beagle, Bulldog, Collie, Golden Retriever, Labrador Retriever, Pug, etc.

If kept together for a long time, the American Wirehair may develop a harmonious relationship with them.

However, it is important to supervise the two and to ensure that the cat always has an escape route.

Unlike most cats:

The American Wirehair cats are capable of adjusting with other cats. They are not territorial. Instead, they greet and welcome other Feline breeds.

If they are introduced to a new home, they show respect for the current pet occupants.

They let the other pet get accustomed to its presence without creating much trouble for itself, other pets or the owner.

Related Questions

What is the cost of an American Wirehair cat? The cost of an American Wirehair ranges from $800-$1200. The price of kittens usually starts from $600.


One must be careful when buying a pet.

A lower the price tag may indicate that the kitten is not a purebred or is not healthy. Other than that, the cost of a show-class American Wirehair starts from $1000-$1200.

What is the lifespan of an American Wirehair cat? The average lifespan of an American Wirehair is 14 to 18 years.

However, the efficiency of care can either decrease or increase their lifespan from 18 years.

The longest lifespan recorded for an American Wirehair is 17 years.

Are there any cat breeds similar to the American Wirehair cats? There are four cat breeds that are said to be similar to American Wirehair cats in one way or another.

These breeds include Bengal cats, Chartreux cats, Somali cats, and American Shorthair cats.

These cats resemble each other in terms of physique, behavior, and personality.


Other sources 


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