Turkish Van | Cat Breed Information & Facts – Pictures

Turkish Van

With a fluffy and cottony coat, a captivating look and a sociable character, the Turkish Van cat breed has many characteristics that make it unique and particularly desired.

The belief that all cats are afraid of water is wrong. A great example of this is the Turkish van, known for his good-natured disposition, intelligence and attractive appearance. Vans are usually white in color, with a red tail and spots on the head. Turks consider such marks as “the touch of Allah’s fingers”, which emphasizes their love for these interesting animals.


Turkish Van photos

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Physical characteristics

The Turkish de van breed is considered medium to large, as its weight varies from 5 to 8 kg for males, 5 or 6 kg for females. This cat is sturdy and muscular. Its body is strong and slightly elongated, there are specimens that have reached up to a meter in length if measured from the nose to the tip of the tail.


Distinctive features

  • The head of the Turkish Van is wedge-shaped, moderately long. The cat’s nose is pink.
  • Vans have medium sized ears.
  • Blue eyes are not necessarily the breed standard. Cats can also have yellow or amber irises. There are representatives of the breed with eyes of different colors.
  • The length of tail hair reaches 5 cm, despite the fact that they are shorter all over the body.
  • This cat has almost no undercoat. This makes it much easier to take care of your cat. The texture of the animal’s fur is similar to cashmere. It is also “endowed” with a water-repellent effect.
  • The luxury of Turkish Van wool depends on the age of the animal and the season.

Character and behavior

It is a cat that can adapt very well to children, because it very much enjoys the company of the little ones in the house. We can create common games that will delight both the animal and the children. We can encourage our Turkish Van cat through stalking or hunting games, so toys such as moving mice, fishing rods or others that come to mind will be ideal to enjoy watching our kitten. play without pause.

This funny cat is very famous for his passion for water, which he appreciates without regard, whether in a bathtub, in lakes or rivers near his home. He is also a very playful and sociable cat, as long as he has spent time socializing as a kitten, so he will have a good time if we spend time with him, prepare games or give him toys that keep him active and entertaining.

We must be aware that, like many other cats, the Turkish Van breed likes to climb on the heights, without taking into account that to reach the top of this shelf, this cat will have to hang on the curtains or move objects of our furniture. We must be patient and, in no case, reprimand him for this attitude, but reinforce positive behaviors. In addition, it is important to stimulate it with toys or scrapers of different heights, so that it can climb and jump without fear of breaking or damaging the furniture, or of course itself.

As for relationships with people, the Turkish Van is really sociable and affectionate, appreciating the well-being and the company of the whole family, as well as that of other animals.


In general, the Turkish Van breed is distinguished by good health inherited from its ancestors. They have a great appetite, good immunity and good stamina. However, there is a slight tendency towards hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. Unlike some other breeds, these cats have not been shown to inherit a predisposition to this disease.

The breed also tends to have hearing impairments, as the predisposition to deafness of white cats has affected the breed, which is why it is common to find specimens with total or partial deafness.

Life expectancy

The life expectancy of the Turkish van cat is around 13 and 17 years.


The Turkish Van’s coat does not tangle, as it has no undercoat. That’s why care is easy. To keep the beauty of cashmere wool in perfect condition, you need to comb it twice a week, and at the end of the procedure, collect excess hair with a damp rubber glove. Such a special device is sold in any pet store.

It is necessary to cut the claws of the animal once a month, to monitor the condition of the animal’s ears.

Turkish Van needs a teeth cleaning. If the owners cannot cope with the task, then once a month it is necessary to take the pet to the veterinary clinic for these purposes.

Periodically, the eyes are washed with clean water, tea leaves or chamomile solution.

It is generally accepted that cats spend most of the day napping, but this rule does not apply to the Turkish Van. It seems that the animal is still awake.

Fun facts

  • The average length on the tail can be up to 5 cm in adult Turkish Van cats.
  • There is a Research Centre at the University of Wang, which studies furry creatures of this breed. Especially emphasis is placed on comprehensive knowledge about white odd-eyed individuals. The centre was founded at the end of the last century.
  • Usually Turkish Van kittens’ cost from $ 100. The cheapest is the pet class, it is taken mainly for home maintenance. Then comes the breed, which participates in the selection of the breed, and the exhibition show is in the most honourable place.
  • With the onset of summer, the fur of Turkish Van cat acquires a stiffer structure, and also becomes shorter. This is due to its adaptability to climate change.
  • Lake Van in Turkey is rich in hydrocarbons, so there are few fish. However, this did not become an obstacle for the furry Vans to learn how to catch her for food.
  • The Turkish Van cat loves to swim, and his fur is almost waterproof.

History of the breed

This is one of the aboriginal breeds, that is, formed in a certain area under the influence of natural factors, to the creation of which a person did not exert his efforts. Its historical homeland is Eastern Anatolia, which is part of Turkey. These animals got their name due to the fact that they were distributed mainly in the vicinity of Lake Van, located in the Armenian Highlands.

In Turkey, Turkish Van has been known since the Middle Ages, but the world learned about the Van cat much later – in 1955, when two residents of Great Britain – Laura Lushington and Sonya Halliday – visited Turkey in order to get better acquainted with the sights of the country and its national color, as well as to make a reportage. And so, during one of their trips through the territory of Asia Minor, they were a lot surprised when they saw large cats, splashing without fear in a small stream.

This unusual behavior aroused great interest among the travelers; and, having found the owners of unusual animals – local peasants – they began to beg them to sell them pets. But the inhabitants of eastern countries are famous for their generosity in gifts to guests, and Laura received two cute kittens of the Turkish Van as a gift, taking them with her to England.

Unfortunately, the first couple did not bear offspring, but, a few years later, Lushington again visited Turkey in 1959 and again brought a couple of Turkish Vans. This time, luck was on their side, and soon kittens appeared that retained all the signs of the breed – a snow-white color with brick-red spots on the head and the same tail, delicate fur and a strange love of bathing for cats.

Officially, these immigrants from Turkey were recognized in Great Britain in 1969, giving them the name “Turkish cat”. The International Cat Organization registered it in 1971. In 1979, the name was changed to the modern “Turkish Van” to avoid confusion with the Turkish Angora breed.


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