Norwegian Forest




9"- 12"

Adult Weight

12-16 pounds

Life Span

14-16 years


Playful, sweet, family-oriented, affectionate


Skogkatt, Norsk skaukatt


Large long-haired



Personality and Temperament

Striking looks and a warm personality help the Norwegian Forest Cat stand out from the crowd. This exquisite long-haired cat breed is an ancient one, with ample intelligence, fantastic social skills, and an appreciation for all of life’s comforts. Even though the Norwegian Forest Cat comes from a cold climate, these cats love to keep warm. They appreciate an indoor lifestyle with plenty of soft, comfortable surfaces to accommodate frequent naps. They also have an appreciation for their human families, but affection takes place on their terms rather than yours. The Norwegian Forest Cat might decide to cuddle up in your lap or sleep on your pillow, but doesn’t typically enjoy being picked up or held when it’s not the cat’s idea. Despite the breed’s reputation for having quite an independent streak, Norwegian Forest Cats are loyal to their favorite people and are perfectly capable of making friends with other pets, including well behaved dogs and other friendly cats. If you see similarities between the Norwegian Forest Cat and the Maine Coon, you’re not imagining things! The two breeds do have quite a bit in common, including large stature, ultra-thick fur, and exceptional hunting prowess. Some experts believe that Norwegian Forest Cats might be one of the breeds that contributed to the  development of the Maine Coon (which, like the Norwegian Forest Cat, is a natural breed).


As a relatively large breed, the Norwegian Forest Cat might require more calories per day then the average cat, especially if they are very active. These cats need a high-quality diet and will thrive on high-protein food with real meat or fish as the primary ingredient.
The Norwegian Forest Cat has a very thick double coat, but it requires far less frequent grooming than you might think. Weekly brushing or combing is usually sufficient to prevent mats and keep the luxurious coat looking its very best. Additional grooming routines to consider include regular nail trimming and daily toothbrushing. Both should be introduced from a young age.
The Norwegian Forest Cat might be very fond of lounging, but this doesn’t mean that it’s a complete couch potato. These big, fluffy cats are athletes at heart, with a fondness for running, jumping, and climbing.
Norwegian Forest Cats typically enjoy excellent health and are known for their longevity. It is not unusual for one of these cats to live well beyond 15 years. Even so, the Norwegian Forest Cat breed is prone to a few known health issues.


Affection Level 80%
Activity Level 80%
Pet-Friendly 80%
Kid-Friendly 80%
Sociability 60%
Intelligence 80%
Playfulness 80%
Independence 60%
Vocality 20%
Grooming 60%


The Breed Standard


The body is large and sturdy, of moderate length, with a broad chest and a wide (but not fat) girth. Males are typically much larger than females.


The head forms an equilateral triangle, with a straight nose, a firm chin, and a muzzle that melds with the rest of the face without forming prominent whisker pads. Males may display significant jowling.


The eyes are large and expressive, with a distinct almond shape. They are set at a slight angle so that the outer corner is higher than the inner corner. Eyes complement the coat and are normally green, gold, copper, or green-gold. Cats with white markings as well as solid white Norwegian Forest Cats may have blue eyes or odd eyes.


A Norwegian Forest Cat’s ears are of medium to large size, with heavy furnishings. Lynx tips are seen as highly desirable but are not required.

Legs & Paws

The legs are of medium length, with the hind legs being a bit longer than the forelegs. The legs are strong and muscular, and the paws are large and round. The front paws appear to “toe out” and all paws display tufting between the toes.


The Norwegian Forest Cat’s tail should be long and bushy. Ideally, the tail is the same length as the cat’s body. The tail is thickest at the base, and has ample plumage formed by longer guard hairs.


Norwegian Forest Cats have thick, double coats with water-resistant guard hairs, a heavy, wooly undercoat, britches, and a bib. The undercoat is typically shed during summer.


Almost all colors and patterns are acceptable with the exception of those that show hybridization, i.e., sable, chocolate, lilac, lavender, cinnamon, fawn, colorpoint markings, and any blend of these colors with white. The nose leather and paw pads may be any color.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How much does a Norwegian Forest Cat cost?

    How much does a Norwegian Forest Cat cost?A pet-quality Norwegian Forest Cat kitten typically cost between $1,800 and $2,000.
  • How big do Norwegian Forest Cats get?

    How big do Norwegian Forest Cats get?The Norwegian Forest Cat is moderately long and sturdily built, with substantial bone structure. Males weigh on average between 12 and 18 pounds. Females tend to be smaller, averaging 8 to 12 pounds.
  • How long do Norwegian Forest Cats live?

    How long do Norwegian Forest Cats live?The average life span for a Norwegian Forest Cat is 13 to 16 years, but some have been known to live to be 20 years old.
  • Do Norwegian Forest Cats shed?

    Do Norwegian Forest Cats shed?The Norwegian Forest Cat’s thick double coat shed less than you might expect for such a fluffy cat. Weekly brushing can remove loose hair to reduce shedding in the house. In the springtime, Norwegian Forest Cats lose much of their undercoat in preparation for the warmer summer months. During this time, shedding is generally heavier; daily brushing can help move the process along.
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