Ragdoll Cat Breed

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Ragdoll Breed (C) Wiki Commons

History of the Ragdoll

The Ragdoll was developed in 1960 by an American breeder known as Ann Baker. They are loved for their beautiful blue eyes, large body size, and eagerness to show their affection toward their owners.

It is theorized that a white domestic long haired cat who looked like a Persian or Angora had litters with a male cat that appeared to be a Birman.

As the breeding went on, they produced kittens that were very affectionate, docile, and got along with everyone. The kittens were also notable for their tendency to relax and go limp when picked up.

They were then bred more carefully and selectively over a period of years until they developed what is now considered the Ragdoll breed. From that point onward, they were bred more selectively to achieve a larger size and pointed coloration.

Many have their hearts set on the Ragdoll cat because of how docile they are and affectionate they become with their owners throughout their life. Many people also enjoy how big this cat is and the colors that they are available in. They are most popular in the United Kingdoms, but are also well known and loved in the United States.

Size and Age

Ragdolls tend to reach upward of 20 pounds in the male and 10 to 16 pounds in females. Full size is reached at about three to four to five years of age. You can expect neutered and spayed cats to weigh more than cats that have not yet been fixed. They live an average of 13-15 years old, which varies from cat to cat.

Coat and Grooming

The Ragdoll comes in six colors which include blue, chocolate, red, lilac, cream, and seal. The four patterns they are available in are van, bicolor, colorpoint, and mitted.

The Ragdoll cat can mat without the proper amount of combing per week. The breed does have long guard hairs and a dense undercoat which helps to prevent shedding and matting but this should not be an excuse to skip this duty.

It is suggested that you comb their fur around two to three times per week to prevent matting with a stainless steel comb. A flea comb may be used if you suspect fleas or flea dirt.

A bath is usually only necessary if your companion gets into a nasty substance such as dirt or mud. Cats are very self-sufficient in the grooming department unless they are sick or aged.

Nail trimming may be done every 3-4 weeks to prevent them from getting their claws stuck on fabric. Nail trimming is easy to perform and this task can be demoed by your veterinarian.

Ragdoll Care

Because cats grow the most within their first year of life, feeding kitten food is ideal up to one year of age. Kitten food contains a higher protein content that will facilitate his growing needs and high activity level.

You will want to provide plenty of opportunity for exercising and accustoming him to new situations. I recommend supplying scratching posts, cat towers, cat tunnels, and catnip mice. Providing interactive play sessions 3-4 times a day to the tune of 10-15 minutes is also a great way to get started on the right foot. Click here to see what toys work best for interactive play sessions.

Under one year old is a great time to introduce him to walking on a leash, nail trimming, and bathing. Your cat should ideally see your veterinarian once per year for a physical examination so issues can be detected early and treated as needed. Monthly flea prevention starting at about 8 weeks old and yearly vaccinations are highly recommended after the first round of shots are done.

Brush the teeth daily to prevent periodontal disease and tartar formation. Clean the ears once a week with a ear cleaning solution from the veterinarian to prevent ear mites or debris build up.
The litter box should be cleaned twice a day to reduce odor. Use a non-clumping cat litter for cats under 4 months of age.


Both mixed breed and pure bred cats can have health problems they grow older. The most common issue with Ragdoll cats appear to be bladder stones and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is the most commonly seen form of heart disease in cats. It will cause the heart muscle to thicken. It has been found that the hypertrophic cardiomyopathy can be screened via an echocardiogram.

The most important thing you can do for your Ragdoll is to keep him at a healthy weight with the proper diet. This alone can prevent a myriad of problems in the future.


The Ragdoll is rightfully named because they often go limp when you pick them up. They allow you to handle them as you please, even if that includes placing them into a baby stroller.

The Ragdoll is a very sociable cat that will usually be the first one to greet a visitor. You may even consider walking this breed on a leash since they have a very outgoing nature.

Many people refer to the Ragdoll as a puppy like cat due to their desire to follow people and ability to get along with other pets. This breed will get along very well with dogs, visitors, and other cats without much trouble. This trait makes them a fantastic pick for large families.

The owner that prefers to sit down and pet a cat after a long day of work will take comfort in having this cat lay next to them.

They are not as vocal as a Siamese cat breed is, but they still talk to their owners. Their meow is more of a quiet meow that is often described as musical and pleasing to the ears.

  • Social Requirements
  • Playful
  • Affectionate
  • Grooming
  • Shedding
  • Children Friendly
  • Pet Friendly
  • Stranger Friendly
  • Health Issues
  • Intelligence
  • Vocal

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