There are millions of domesticated cats all over the world, each of them being beloved members of their respective households. While many cat lovers are content with taking in strays and adopting kittens from their friends’ cats, there are some individuals who prefer to go with a certain breed.
Not all cat breeds are equal; some are more playful, while others exhibit traits of fierce loyalty, a calm demeanor, or have excellent hunting skills. One benefit of getting a specific breed is that you can be fairly sure of the pet’s appearance and personality. While every individual cat is different in its own way, going for a breed will narrow down the possibilities. Here are some of the top cat breeds that are coveted by cat lovers all over the world:
1. Domestic Shorthair Cat
This is a mixed breed that’s mostly found in North America and Europe. It’s also further divided into American Shorthair, European Shorthair, and British Shorthair varieties. These are among the most popular cat breeds all over the world, probably because of their easy maintenance and light shedding.
There are no specific origins for this breed, as it had many mix-ins over time. Genetically, though, we can say that the shorthair breed comes from North American and European ancestors.
Along with being low-maintenance, cats of such breeds are also quite independent and intelligent. Overall, they make excellent pets for people who have a busy schedule but still want the comfort of a pet at home.
This breed originated in Iran, but is now a common sight as a domesticated breed around the globe. In fact, the Persian breed has been one of the most popular ones since the 17th century. Back then, Italian merchants would take the longhaired, smushed-face cats and introduce them to the rest of Europe. Their long coats set the Persians apart from the more common descendants of the African wildcat.
While a Persian cat lends a feel of elegance and luxury to a home, it’s also quite a demanding choice. The long hair means that the owner has to keep grooming and maintaining the coat or risk hairballs, shedding, and dander everywhere. If you can deal with all that, the Persian cat will reward you with its usually calm, easygoing nature.
3. Maine Coon
This cat was first introduced in Maine, within the United States. It’s easily one of the biggest domesticated breeds out there. There’s some mystery revolving around their specific origins, with some claiming that they came from a cross between a raccoon and a cat. However, it’s much more likely that the Maine Coon came from a match between a longhaired Angora and a Domestic Shorthair.
The Maine Coon breed became very popular in the 20th century, both in America and the rest of the world. If you get this one for a pet, expect it to grow up to 16 inches in height and a maximum length of 48 inches. Despite their size, these cats are known for their gentle nature and their harmonious interaction with children. If you have kids at home, this might be the best choice for a domesticated pet.
4. Devon Rex
The Devon Rex species has short hair and a slender body. The hair is also wavy, which sets it apart from other cats in terms of appearance. If you’re on the lookout for something a bit different but don’t want a fully exotic breed, this one might be a serious consideration.
Since the fur of this breed is very soft, you can easily cuddle and pet it in comfort. The ears are adorably large, lending a slightly comical yet unique appearance to the slim cat.
However, keep in mind that a Devon Rex would usually be playful, active, and need a lot of exercise. If no one is at home for most of the day, you may not do justice to this cat. Since it’s often called ‘a monkey in a catsuit’, it’s probably better if you have kids or young adults who are willing to regularly play with the cat and help it let off some steam.
Siamese cats are very popular not just for their looks, but also due to their appearance on the screen. Many would remember the clever Siamese pair that sings a duet in the classic Disney cartoon ‘Lady and the Tramp’. Many find this song offensive, but it’s still instrumental in sparking an interest in Siamese cats. There’s also a Siamese in the 1939 rendition of ‘The Wizard of Oz’ and several other works.
The black markings, white body, and blue eyes of a Siamese make it instantly recognizable. While they might seem very fancy, these cats are usually quite affectionate. This has only helped to increase their popularity among cat lovers.
6. Scottish Fold
This different-looking breed has a natural domestic gene mutation affecting its ear cartilage. The result of this mutation is that as the cat grows older, its ears start to fold down towards the eyes. This phenomenon creates a cute, unique appearance similar to that of an owl.
Along with such distinctive and adorable physical traits, this breed is also reputed to be a very loving pet. You may have to pay top dollar for a Fold kitten, especially considering that this breed is popular with celebrities.
The coat of the Scottish fold could have long or short hairs and come in just about any color or color combination. Their fur is supposed to be soft, thick, and very dense, especially around the tail, upper thighs, ears, and toes.
When you get a Scottish fold for a pet, you can be fairly certain of getting a placid, good-natured animal that can adapt to other animals quite well. They’re also very playful, intelligent, and fastidious about grooming. You’d also have to play with them a lot, so make sure you have the required stamina. Be warned; if you leave them alone or isolated for too long, they might start suffering from depression.
These look a lot like Ragdoll cats, which are also a popular domestic breed. However, Ragamuffins are a separate breed, with thick fur almost like a rabbit’s. They also have very friendly personalities, though they’re usually noted to be among the laziest cat breeds around.
Their lazy tendency is exactly why Ragamuffins make such great indoor cats. If you’d like your pet to stay safe inside most of the time, this could be the answer to your prayer.
Furthermore, this breed has a substantial, broad body type. They’d be perfect for cuddling or just holding in your arms without any worries about hurting them. The fur is dense, which might call for a bit of regular maintenance.
Having the most popular cat breed won’t ensure that you’d have the most compatible pet. However, it will help you prepare for the new arrival. If one of the breeds above appeals to you, see if anyone you know has a specimen already. Getting some feedback will help you make the decision and probably encourage you to bring a delightful critter home.