Traditionally, Persian cats have what breeders call a ‘doll face’. This makes them stand out as different from the ‘flat face’ of more recent breeding. If the cat looks as though he is frowning, then he is probably an Ultra or flat face breed. Doll face cats are known to have less health issues, so give careful thought to your preference.
Take note of the cat’s eyes. Persians have very wide round full eyes, unlike other Oriental cats which have almond shaped, slightly slanted eyes. Eyes should be bright with prominent pupils (the black part of the eye).
Persians have short pointed ears that look as though they tilt forward slightly. This is something else which distinguishes them from other Oriental breeds.
Another pointer is to look out for short legs. Persian cats have heavy long coats with thick strong bones, unlike the Siamese very slender and delicate legs. Persians love a big cuddle and you can hug them without fear of breaking any of their delicate bones.
Study the coat – it should be long, soft and silky to the touch. Whilst Persian Cats can be almost any colour, they are mostly divided up by their solid colour. There are many colours including golden, smoked, tabby, silver (aka white), tortoiseshell as well as two coloured and Himalayan. This latter colour has a cream coloured coat with contrasting colour patches, rather like the Siamese.
Another thing to watch out for is the tail. This breed’s tail should be long and particularly sturdy and packed with fur. Looking more like a heavy feather than a slender stem, it is sometimes difficult to feel the end of the cats tail.
You should instantly be able to tell a Persian from any other breed by the way it interacts with you. They have a calm, placid and docile manner with not a great interest in active play although naturally kittens can be somewhat playful.