The Nebelung: an elegant cat with a calm character

Nebelung between the leaves

The Nebelung is a half-long hairy variant of the Russian Blue. The name of this breed comes from the German word nebel which means haze or fog and refers to the misty colour of the coat. The Nebelung is a medium sized cat that prefers quiet surroundings. Because this cat is gentle in nature it is often seen as the perfect cat for indoors. Although it is a quiet cat, it does like the company of its owner very much. Do you have a family with young, noisy children? Then the Nebelung is not for you. Would you like to know more about this elegant four-legged cat? Then read on!


The origin of the Nebelung

The Nebelung is also known as the half-haired, American variant of the Russian Blue. Besides the American ones there are also other variants of this species. Not much is known about the origin of the Russian Blue, but many believe that it is a natural breed from the Archangel Islands in northern Russia. It was first exhibited in London in 1875 as ‘Archangel Cat’. At the beginning of the 20th century, the Russian Blue was imported to the United States, where it was not until the 1980s that real interest in the species arose. In the US, the Russian Blue was crossed with a black domestic cat, from which the Nebelung originated. After some research this breed was described as a half long hairy Russian. It took some time before he was finally called the Nebelung. This happened in 1987.

The Nebelung did not come from America, as you would think, but from Russia. That is why it is often said that this species had been bred in Russia for a long time and that it is therefore also its country of origin.


The character: he likes to look the cat out of the tree

The Nebelung is known for its quiet character. He literally likes to look the cat out of the tree. He is a bit shy and waits quietly before he makes contact with strangers. He also doesn’t let himself be petted just like that. So, if you have just bought a Nebelung and he jumps out if you want to pet him, know that this is perfectly normal. After a while, the Nebelung often builds a strong bond with his owner and the other family members. When you treat a Nebelung in a calm and sensitive way, he will become your best friend and will gladly sit on your lap.

The Nebelung does not like noise. That is why it is not advisable to buy this cat if you have young children in the house. It is really important that you ensure a quiet living environment. If you don’t do this, this cat can become stressed very quickly. If you are looking for a real family cat, then it is better to choose a different breed. In spite of the fact that this is a quiet cat, he does like to play. So, make sure you have enough toys so that he can play if he feels like it.


Infographic Nebelung

The appearance of the Nebelung: graceful with a special colour

The Nebelung can be recognized by its mist-coloured coat. This is the most important external characteristic of this breed. When you see a Nebelung walking you can immediately see that it is a fairly long cat with a firm and well-muscled body. Both the males and the females of this breed are powerfully built, but the males are comparatively larger. On average a Nebelung weighs between 2.5 and 5 kilograms.

This cat has a medium sized body that is well proportioned. The body is athletic because of its powerful muscles, but it is not wide. Because of this the cat keeps its graceful appearance. The legs are long, and the feet are medium sized. Between the toes the Nebelung has luxuriant tufts of hair. The tail of this cat is long and plumed but is in proportion to the body. Characteristic of the tail is that the coat here is longer than on the rest of the body. The neck of this cat is long and graceful, especially in males the neck can look shorter because of the thick coat.

The head of a Nebelung is fairly broad and wedge-shaped. In addition, he has large and pointed ears that extend in the shape of his head. The muzzle of the Nebelung has an average length. The whisker pads are a bit more rounded than the rest of the snout. In a female this can cause a fuzzy appearance. The eyes of this cat are far apart, have a slightly oval shape and are intensely green. A Nebelung kitten can have yellow eyes, these change to green after a while. When the kitten is 8 months old there should be a green circle around the pupil. The green colour of the eyes will be most bright and lively when your cat has reached adulthood. The combination between the coat and the colour of the eyes gives a very nice contrast. This is also often one of the reasons why people like to buy this breed.


The coat of the Nebelung

The colour of the coat of the Nebelung is originally blue. Although other colours such as black and white sometimes occur in breeding, most of these cats are blue. This blue grey colour can give the coat a nice shine. Because the tops of the blue coat are a bit silver it looks like the coat shines. Usually this is only visible on the head and shoulders. The bottom layer of the coat often has a lighter blue colour than the top layer. The Nebelung can be born with ghostmarks. These are markings on the body of the cat that are partly transparent. As the cat gets older these markings disappear.


The upbringing of the Nebelung: provide a quiet room!

A quiet environment is essential when raising a Nebelung. As you could have read earlier in this article, this breed does not like noise at all. If he grows up in a room with a lot of noise in his young years as a kitten, this can cause a lot of damage to his emotional condition. He can become extremely frightened by all the noise. This makes it much more difficult for the owner to get in touch with your cat and build up a good bond. Because there is a lot of noise while growing up, he can develop serious fears that are difficult to deal with later in life. This makes it a lot less fun for you as an owner, but also for the cat.

To ensure that your Nebelung grows up in a good way and gets used to the people and sounds around him, it is important to socialize him from an early age. If you take enough time in the beginning to teach your cat rules and routines, then both the cat and you will enjoy this for life. It starts with the birth of the kitten. Contact with the mother at the beginning of a cat’s life is very important for its mental health. Give the kitten time with its mother to learn all the cat rules from an experienced expert. It is also important that the kitten immediately gets used to human contact. A kitten that comes into contact with different people and animals soon after birth will become a social and sociable cat. You can get your cat used to human touch by picking him up and stroking him from time to time. Grooming will also be much easier if the kitten is used to your touch.

A good socialisation also helps the Nebelung to adapt more easily to the arrival of foreigners.

If you are planning to breed this breed, then one thing is very clear: he may only be crossed with a Russian Blue. The kittens of this cross may only be used for breeding the Nebelung. Breeding with other breeds can have serious consequences for the health of this breed.Nebelung kitten

The care of the Nebelung

Taking care of this breed is very simple, which makes this cat an attractive choice for many people. This cat only needs to be brushed once in a while, certainly not every day as you see in other cat breeds. How often you need to brush depends on the length of the hair. If you have a Nebelung with long hair you may need to comb more often to avoid hairballs. Be careful not to do this too much. Excessive combing will damage the undercoat, which is bad for the health of the Nebelung. Take care of it, but in moderation. Always use a very soft natural brush when brushing. A brush that is more severely damaged will quickly damage its coat.


The food the Nebelung needs: a balanced diet without many adaptations

Because this cat is not really known for an active life it is not necessary to get special food in the house. On the other hand, it is important to get food that contains sufficient animal protein. Also, high quality animal proteins contain taurine. Taurine is essential for the health of a cat. It plays an important role in improving digestion and metabolism.

It is sometimes thought that cats can also eat fine dog food and that this is healthy for them. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Dog food does not contain nearly as much high-quality animal protein as cat food. In addition, the taurine content in dog food is much lower, which can cause a cat to develop health problems when eating dog food:

  • Becoming blind
  • Heart muscle diseases
  • Nervosity
  • Poor immune system

The consequences of a taurine deficiency in cats are enormous. So, make sure you provide good cat food that contains a lot of animal protein. Also make sure that your cat does not eat too much. Cats are generally quite sensitive to developing overweight. Because the Nebelung is not very active it also burns less calories. A cat can then quickly ingest too much and gain weight. So, pay close attention to the weight of a Nebelung. Do you notice that he is getting too fat? Then reduce the portions.


Diseases that are common in the Nebelung

So far there are no known diseases specific to this breed. However, this breed, just like other breeds, can have hereditary diseases. The percentage is fairly low, but the seriousness of these hereditary diseases is very high. That is why more and more tests are being done for hereditary diseases in the Nebelung. The diseases that are tested for are HCM and PKD. Because the Nebelung originates from the Russian Blue, it has partly the same characteristics and therefore also the risk of the same hereditary disorders. To prevent abnormalities and to guarantee the health of this breed it is advised to only breed the Nebelung with a Russian Blue.

Nebelung in a hammock

How old can the Nebelung get?

The life expectancy of a Nebelung is 15 to 20 years.  This is slightly older than the average cat. It is important to remember that the life expectancy of a Nebelung depends on the environment in which it grows up. If there is a lot of restlessness in his environment while growing up, he can develop problems that will make him much less old. This also applies to nutrition. When not paying attention to the cat’s nutritional needs, this can have a bad impact on his health. The dietary advice that applies is always general. Every cat can be just a little bit different and that is why it is important to always keep a close eye on a cat’s health.


What you need to know before you take in a Nebelung

If you are looking for a quiet cat that attaches itself well to its owner, then the Nebelung is the right choice for you. Because he doesn’t need a lot of care and doesn’t require a lot of attention from you, it doesn’t take much time to take care of this cat.

If you are looking for an active, playful family cat, the Nebelung is not the right option for you. The Nebelung is often bought by families where the children are over twelve years old or even have already left home. This is generally the best environment for a Nebelung. So look at your own environment and ask yourself whether a Nebelung suits you. Do this in advance and not afterwards.

If you want to know a lot more about the Nebelung, you can visit the American Cat Fanciers Association, where you can find breed information about the Nebelung.


What price do you have to think of if you are going to buy a Nebelung?

The average price of a Nebelung is around $1100. These prices can differ per breeder. It is very important to find a good breeder when you open a Nebelung. So, don’t just buy this through a marketplace or an acquaintance, but look for a real recognised breeder. A recognized breeder knows exactly how to raise this breed.

In addition to these purchase costs, you will of course also incur costs for the care of your cat. For this you will quickly lose $600 per year. Think about buying food, a litter box, cat toys and a scratching post. Also, you always have to take into account veterinarian costs.

Nebelung sitting outside

What do you think of the Nebelung?

Have you become interested in the Nebelung after reading this article? Or maybe you already have one? We are very curious about your experiences with this breed. If you have a nice fact or would like to talk about this breed, please leave a comment below!

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We are a team of cat lovers, doing our best to create and spread information about cats. On you will read all about different cat breeds, and what makes them so special. You will also find information about grooming and training your cat. Be sure to leave us a reply if you like our article.

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