Colorpoint Shorthair cat
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Colorpoint Shorthair Cat Breed Profile

Est. read time: 8 min.

When looking at a Colorpoint Shorthair cat, you might think you’re seeing a Siamese. You wouldn’t be completely incorrect, as the Colorpoint Shorthair takes many of their best features from their Siamese ancestors. The resemblance is uncanny, but what truly sets them apart is the variety of colors that they come in.

Colorpoint Shorthairs are gorgeous cats known to be friendly, affectionate, and vocal. They let you know what’s on their mind and want to tell you just how much they love you. They are active and strong, preferring to play and spend time with their humans. You might have to earn a Colorpoint Shorthair’s trust, but once you get into their inner circle, they will treat you like family. 

To learn more about the Colorpoint Shorthair cat and what life might be like with one, keep reading!

Colorpoint Shorthair cat a glance
Personality Affectionate, entertaining, vocal
Life expectancy 12-15 years
Weight 6-14 lbs
Coat & colors Short; colorpoint
Energy level High
Affection level High
Friendliness High
Shedding level Low
Required grooming Low

Overview of the Colorpoint Shorthair cat

Colorpoint Shorthair cat with whiskers

The Colorpoint Shorthair is considered a medium-sized cat when fully grown. They love to be active and involved in their family’s daily life. They are strong and powerful, yet still have a very elegant and regal look. Males are typically larger than female Colorpoint Shorthairs, but that can change based on lifestyle, nutrition, and overall health. 


Colorpoint Shorthairs can weigh between 6 and 14 pounds, which might not sound big: This is because of how they’re built.

They are muscular with a lean and slender frame. They are powerhouses, but they don’t look too round or stocky. Their length and height are what make them larger cats, but other factors can play into their size. 


Colorpoint Shorthairs can grow up to 24 inches in length. They are known for their slender bodies. They tend to stand over 12 inches tall with the help of their long legs. 

They have very proportionate bodies and tails, with long necks and faces. Their noses are drawn-out and are often the first feature you’ll notice, making their profile instantly iconic. 


The Colorpoint Shorthair is most easily categorized by their charming coats. As their name suggests, they have a short coat that is thick and soft to the touch. Their coat patterns come in both colorpoint and lynx, featuring 16 different colorations that are considered non-traditional.

Their coat colors are what truly sets Colorpoint Shorthairs apart from the Siamese cat. This variation is thanks to the American Shorthair breed that is part of their ancestry. 

Life expectancy

Colorpoint Shorthairs can live long and happy lives when they are properly cared for. Most Colorpoint Shorthairs live between 12 and 15 years. They like to make themselves comfortable and feel included in their humans’ lives, so it should be no surprise that they become the center of your family. 

History of the Colorpoint Shorthair cat

lynx Colorpoint Shorthair cat

The Colorpoint Shorthair was developed post-WWII when people wanted to expand on the color variations of the Siamese cat. Instead of having a cat with the traditional seal, chocolate, blue, or lilac colors, these breeders envisioned a red cat that maintained most of the Siamese features. 

Siamese cats were bred with red American Shorthair cats to get the highly-desired reddish tint. During the first try, the kittens had the red colorpoint markings while still resembling the Siamese breed significantly. Ta-da!

Red and cream Colorpoint Shorthairs were first accepted for championship status by the Cat Fanciers’ Association in the 1960s, and soon other colors followed. Today, there are 16 non-traditional colors that the Colorpoint Shorthair comes in, all equally beautiful and unique. 

Colorpoint Shorthair cat characteristics

Colorpoint Shorthairs are most recognized for their resemblance to the Siamese cat. Their wedge-shaped faces, large ears, and slender bodies make it hard to ignore the fact that they are kin to the Siamese.

As mentioned, Colorpoint Shorthairs are unlike the Siamese cat because they come in 16 non-traditional colors. The three main patterns that you see in a Colorpoint Shorthair are solid, lynx, and parti-color. The following are all of the colors a Colorpoint Shorthair can display:

  1. Red point
  2. Cream point
  3. Seal lynx point
  4. Chocolate lynx point
  5. Blue lynx point
  6. Lilac lynx point
  7. Red lynx point
  8. Cream lynx point
  9. Seal-tortie lynx point
  10. Chocolate-tortie lynx point
  11. Blue-cream lynx point
  12. Lilac-cream lynx point
  13. Seal-tortie point
  14. Chocolate-tortie point
  15. Blue-cream point
  16. Lilac-cream point

Personality and behavior

red Colorpoint Shorthair cat

The Colorpoint Shorthair boasts personality traits that are similar to both the Siamese and American Shorthair. Similar to the Siamese, they are incredibly outgoing and friendly—but like the American Shorthair, they might need a little bit of time to warm up to strangers.

Colorpoint Shorthairs follow their humans around wherever they go and don’t like being left alone for too long. Sometimes these cats do better when paired up with another cat or dog in the home. 

Like the Siamese, the Colorpoint Shorthair cat is extremely vocal and will talk all day long in their loud, raspy voice if you let them. They’re also the type to let you know when they think they deserve more attention than you’re giving them. They will snuggle right up next to you or on a windowsill, as they enjoy basking in the sunlight. 

Rambunctious and rowdy

Colorpoint Shorthairs are known to be highly active and rowdy characters. They are good at learning tricks and can even be taught to walk on a leash. They need to be entertained, or else they can become bored and potentially destructive or depressed. Mental enrichment toys are a smart way to keep them occupied and help them to release their energy. 

These cats will want to climb, jump, hide, and play throughout the day. If you want a quiet and laid-back cat, the Colorpoint Shorthair is not going to deliver. Instead, they are going to encourage you to be just as rambunctious and rowdy as they are!

Caring for a Colorpoint Shorthair cat

lynx Colorpoint Shorthair cat

Colorpoint Shorthairs are pretty easy to care for as long as you yourself are active. If you’re searching for a cat that is entertaining, loving, and reliant on you for affection and activities, this is the cat for you. 

These cats benefit from a highly nutritional diet because they have such low body fat and are so energetic. Providing cat trees, enrichment toys, and shelves to perch on will make your Colorpoint Shorthair content in your space. 

While this cat isn’t known to be overly fussy about their environment, keeping their bathroom space clean with the help of a self-cleaning litter box might make your life a whole lot easier— especially if you cave and bring home two cats!


For grooming, your Colorpoint Shorthair needs weekly brushing to help remove any loose furs that otherwise end up on your furniture and floor. An occasional bath can help keep their coats shiny and silky, but Colorpoint Shorthairs are good at maintaining their own grooming needs and don’t shed that much

Make sure their nails are trimmed at least monthly, especially because these cats love to climb furniture. The shorter and more well-kept their nails are, the longer your furniture and surfaces will stay unscratched.

Health-related issues

While the Colorpoint Shorthair is known to be relatively healthy, there are some medical issues that pop up in this specific cat breed. Colorpoint Shorthairs are more likely to have health-related issues similar to those of the Siamese cat, including:

Taking your Colorpoint Shorthair to the vet for regular check-ups can help mitigate any health-related issues in the breed. Exercise, hygiene, a carefully balanced diet, and lots of love can help ensure your cat stays as healthy and happy as possible.

Taking home a Colorpoint Shorthair

Colorpoint Shorthairs can be a great addition to any family. They are incredibly friendly and adaptable, getting along with everyone in the household. If you’re looking for a best friend, you can find one in the Colorpoint Shorthair. They are loyal, loving, and faithful companions that want to spend as much time with their humans as possible. 

Be prepared to be followed around wherever you go and involved in non-stop conversation with your Colorpoint Shorthair. Though needy, they are a great cat to have in your life, and you’d be lucky to bond with one!


Photo credits:

  • © Kamée / Wikipedia Commons / CC-BY-SA-3.0
  • Marieke Tacken via Unsplash
  • © Williamep4 / Wikipedia Commons / CC-BY-SA-4.0