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The Sterling cat is a silver long-haired chinchilla cat, similar to a Persian but without its shortened face. Sterlings have large green eyes with a black ring around them and sparkling white fur. The breed is based on the concept of Britain's pure chinchilla longhairs, a documented breed of English origin (In Britain, cat fancies call Persians "Longhairs", "Persian Longhairs", "Chinchilla Longhairs" etc; these equate to the North American "Persian").

The breed was accepted by the International Cat Association as NBC in the early 1990s and International Cat Exhibitors followed through to bringing the breed to Championship status. Also, International Best New Breed was achieved in consecutive years in the late 1990s.

Presently, the breed maintains its own registry under International Sterling Society. Over twenty years went into this breed, including international support.

In the early 1990s, a letter of support was written by Dr. John Saidla, D.V.M. of Cornell University Feline Health Center, after a formal presentation was made to Dr. Drew Noden, DVM, Dr. Jim Richards, DVM and Dr. Fred Scott, DVM, along with genetic concept. Further documentation came forth after research at GCCF archives, during one of several visits to England.

Some confusion arises because colorbred, silver Persians are utilized as part of the breed in early F1-F3 matings. Once a litter is registered Sterling it remains Sterling. Imports are involved to enhance the breed.

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