The Turkish Van is a semi-long-haired breed of domestic cat, which was developed in the United Kingdom from a selection of cats obtained from various cities of modern Turkey, especially Southeast Turkey. The breed is rare, and is distinguished by the Van pattern (named for the breed), where the colour is restricted to the head and the tail, and the rest of the cat is white; this is due to the expression of the piebald white spotting gene, a type of partial leucism. A Turkish Van may have blue or amber eyes, or be odd-eyed (having one eye of each colour). The breed has been claimed to be descended from the landrace of usually all-white Van cats (Turkish: Van kedisi), mostly found near Lake Van, though one of the two original breeders' own writings indicate clearly that none of the breed's foundation cats came from the Van area.Then called the Turkish Cat, the breed was first recognised as such by a breeder/fancier organisation, the UK-based Governing Council of the Cat Fancy (GCCF), in 1969. It was later renamed "Turkish Van" to better distinguish it from the Turkish Angora breed. The term "Turkish Vankedisi" is used by some organisations as a name for all-white specimens of the formal Turkish Van breed, nomenclature easily confused with the Van kedisi landrace cats, which are also often all-white.
Also known as
This breed is also called Turkish Swimming Cat, Turkish Van, Turkish Vankedisi, Türkisch Vankedisi, Van Color, Van Coloration, Van Coloring, Van Colour, Van Colouration, Van Colouring as well as Van Pattern.
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