Ragdolls are the best! Here in Sweden, they are the most popular cat breed, and for good reason: they are strikingly beautiful, large, easy-going, family friendly, silky soft cats with the most gorgeous blue eyes.
The Ragdoll is a pointed breed, which means that the body is lighter in color than the points (the face, legs, tail and ears). They are carefully bred by registered breeders to produce a high standard of healthy, large, affectionate, beautiful animals. There are four color patterns: colorpoint (with no white on their coats), bi-color, mitted, and van (all with varying amounts of white on their coats).
The Ragdoll is a handsome, hefty cat. Neutered males generally reach 15-20 pounds! Females are proportionately smaller, typically weighing between 10-15 pounds (the average adult house cat typically weighs about 10 pounds). Unlike most cats, they are slow to mature, reaching their full coat color at two years and full size and weight by four years of age.
Perfect floppy, family cat
The Ragdoll is very friendly, highly social and well behaved. They often run to the door in greeting whenever you come home, follow you from room to room, snuggle with you, and generally choose to be right where the action is. They are very mellow and love to hang out with the family. They love their family so much, in fact, that they are not a good match for a household where all the family members are away from home for more than 6 hours of the day at a time.
Ragdolls are sometimes known as “cat-dogs” – these are not your typical aloof cat. They are open and friendly, loyal, have a strong need for companionship and can be taught to come when called, play fetch, and walk with a leash and harness.
True to their name, many Ragdolls are so relaxed in nature that they flop when you hold them. With such a sweet tempered nature, Ragdolls make wonderful family pets, gentle with children and babies, usually playing without extending their claws.
The Ragdoll’s semi-long coat is plush and silky, yet only requires minimal grooming to keep it looking and feeling fabulous (you should still brush them once a day). This is because their coats (which some say is soft as a bunny’s) consist mostly of long, soft guard hairs, without a thick, dense, insulating undercoat. No undercoat means less off-season shedding and matting.
Like all mammals with fur or hair, Ragdolls do shed (!) usually with the changing seasons. It is important to comb them with a steel comb on a daily basis to find and remove any loose hair or tangles.
Ragdolls are a relatively young breed, developed in the 1960’s by Ann Baker, a breeder in Riverside, California, who bred Josephine, a domestic longhaired white female running loose in her neighborhood, to other cats she either owned or found. Josephine’s offspring had the unique “Ragdoll” temperament that is so very endearing. By selecting individuals with the look, temperament, and criteria she wanted for her breeding program, she created the Ragdoll breed!
Ragdoll colors and patterns
There are four internationally accepted patterns in Ragdolls: colorpoint, bi-color, mitted and van. These patterns come in six colors: seal, blue, chocolate, lilac, red, and cream.
Colorpoint Ragdolls have classic pointed markings (the “points” are the ears, face, legs and tail) with no white anywhere in their coat.
Bi-colored Ragdolls have an upside-down white ‘V’ marking on their faces, all white paws, and white on their chest ruff and belly. They may also have a splash or two of white on their backs. The points (in this case, ears, outer part of the face mask, and tails) show darker markings.
Mitted Ragdolls have white feet on their front paws and white boots that go all the way up and around the hock of their back legs, a white chin and belly stripe. Mitted Ragdolls may also have a blaze, star or hourglass shaped patch of white on their forehead and nose.
Van patterned Ragdolls have the most white in their coats – only the top of the mask, ears, and tail, and perhaps a few spots on the body, show darker markings.
To read more about color patterns in Ragdolls, click here.