by Solveig Christensen, Soyadi's
|- is a very old
breed that dates back to 1600 BC, where it was depicted on jewelry and
Since it has lived in isolation by the lake of Van in eastern Turkey, it has evolved to cope with harsh cold in the winter and very hot summer.
In the winter it gets a very heavy coat, but only if it is allowed outside in a pen or on a leash, it is as if it says: If I live indoors, I don't need this large overcoat.
|Since it's a cat
that has adapted to nature through millenniums, they
any coat care, and in the
Spring it sheds its winter coat as soon as
the weather gets warm.
But it's a good thing to brush it through now and then, since you don't get the hair in the furniture that you catch in the brush, and since brushing will reduce the amount of hairballs to cough up.
Europe Champion Soyadi's T Van Alexander
Bjarke of Thrige as an angler
|It's no secret
that this cat likes water, even though some of them are more fond of it
We were taken a bit by surprise the first time we experienced this. One
evening we were sitting in the living room and heard strange noises
from the kitchen and we went out to see what it was. It was Bjarke
catching fish while standing inside the aquarium where we keep our pond
fish in the winter.
We have fenced in a corner of our garden pond together with the terrace to see how interested they are in water.
Even if it is cold, it doesn't bother them to
|stand with their
and they have crashed through the ice on the pond a couple of times,
but when they get up, they shake their fur a bit and are then again
interested in the water.
BUT if the water contains soap and is referred to as "bath", the interest dies out. It's like kids who think it's fun to play in a puddle of rain, but water and soap, no thanks. And since they are very intelligent, they at once find out if it's bathing time and then have to be dragged out from under couches and chairs.
|The Van is an
intelligent cat that quickly learns what's forbidden and what's OK,
which doesn't necessarily mean it will abstain from the forbidden
stuff. You can even talk with it, and it may even talk back at you if
you have scolded it, it prefers to have the last word. It
is a cat that needs just as much attention from it's owner as a dog.
In some ways it doesn't react quite like other cats; it is said, for example, that a
|strong cat will sit
in high places in order to have a good overview of
things, this doesn't apply to Vans; a scared or insecure Van will take
a high position whereas the strong Van will lie on the floor.
A male neuter Van does not loose its position in the hierarchy either, it will win itself a position and if other cats hit at it, it will fight back.
If you have other cats or a dog, you will always find that the Van is the dominant animal.
Int. Ch. Soyadi's Bolu