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Russia going kitty crazy amid falling ruble

Russia going kitty crazy amid falling ruble
The recent ruble crash has triggered an increased interest among Russians in cat purchases, according to data from advertising service Youla.

After analyzing statistics on requests and transactions, the service found that sales of cats skyrocketed 213 percent on April 9 (when the ruble dropped), compared to April 3.

The Russian currency fell to a two-year low last week as a result of US sanctions, which have caused a sell-off on the domestic markets. The ruble has since rebounded as the panic simmered off.

According to Lenta.ru, which obtained the Youla statistics, the Scottish Fold was the most popular cat breed among service users. It accounted for 40 percent of the “cats market,” at an average price of almost 3,000 rubles ($48).

British Shorthair was the second-most demanded breed, comprising 26 percent of sales with an average price of 2,800 rubles ($47).

Maine Coons, which are mainly farm cats, took third place. A cat of this breed costs an average of 7,400 rubles ($120).

The hairless Canadian and Donskoy Sphynx cats were in the top-five most-popular breeds, the data showed. The Sphynx breed was developed through selective breeding, starting in the 1960s.

The contemporary breed of Sphynx, also known as the Canadian Sphynx, costs 10,000 rubles ($162) per animal. Its characteristic baldness is caused by a recessive gene.

The Donskoy breed started in 1987 with the discovery of a hairless cat in the Russian city of Rostov-on-Don by cat breeder Elena Kovaleva. Its hairlessness is caused by a dominant gene. The Don Sphynx cat costs 3,100 rubles ($50) on average.

The Scottish Fold, British Shorthair and Maine Coons were also the most popular cat breeds among Russians in March.

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