1. Abyssinian Cat Breed
The Abyssinian is a breed that is very active, playful, and inquisitive.
This slender, short-haired breed is distinguished by its ticked coat pattern, which is similar to that of wild cats.
Though ruddy is the most commonly associated color with the breed, “Abys” are also widely available in blue, fawn, and red (also known as sorrel).
Silver tones, lavender, chocolate, and sex-linked red are also available, though not widely in the United States.
Interesting breed fact: The Abyssinian was largely developed in England; while popular mythology holds that they are of African origin, there is no actual evidence to support this theory.
During WWII, the breed was nearly extinct.
There were only 12 registered Abyssinians in England after the war.
2. American Shorthair Cat Breed
Native American working cats were used to breed the American Shorthair.
Stocky, muscular, and powerful in build, American Shorthairs are true working cats.
The breed was originally known as the “Shorthair,” then as the “Domestic Shorthair,” and finally, in 1965, as the “American Shorthair.”
Today, the term “domestic shorthair” refers to cats of unknown parentage or origin, whereas “American Shorthair” refers to the true pedigreed variety.
They were among the first breeds to be recognized in the United States, with 71 “Shorthair” cats and kittens on display at the country’s first cat show in 1895.
Americans have a tendency to overeat, so owners must ensure that they have plenty of opportunities for exercise and play.
Despite the fact that this breed is accepted in a wide range of colors and patterns, the silver classic tabby is perhaps the most well-known.
Interesting breed fact: The first CFA registered (American) Shorthair was a red tabby male named Belle of Branford, born in England in 1900.
3. American Wirehair Cat Breed
The coat of the American Wirehair is distinctive; as a result of natural mutation, every hair, including the whiskers, is crimped and springy.
This mutation first appeared in a litter of kittens born in upstate New York in 1966; twelve years later, in 1978, it was accepted for championship status by the CFA.
The degree of “wiring” in the hair varies greatly; if the hair is too long or too soft, it may straighten or form waves and ringlets with age.
American Wirehair coats should be hard and springy.
The American Wirehair is a strong, muscular cat who enjoys both active play and affection and quiet time.
The first mutation occurred in a domestic shorthair, and the American Shorthair has also contributed to the breed’s development.
Wirehairs come in a wide range of colors and patterns.
4. Balinese Cat Breed
The outgoing personality, intelligence, robust body type, pointed coloring, and rounded moderate style of the Traditional Siamese are combined with a softer voice and a silky coat in the Traditional Balinese.
They are extremely intelligent, inquisitive, and caring.
They are agile, swift, muscular, and extremely intelligent, and they enjoy playing fetch or making up their own games.
They get along well with other cats and dogs, but are also self-sufficient enough to cope with periods of isolation.
While they still ‘talk’ like their Siamese cousins, their voices are much softer, and they only speak when they feel it is important to do so.
They are very aware of their owners and their surroundings, but they are not a hyperactive cat.
Rather, they strike an easy balance between playing and napping, depending on the situation.
The Balinese is a Siamese breed with semi-long hair.
It has a medium-length coat that is silky and fine.
The Balinese are found in the four Siamese-associated solid point colors (seal, blue, chocolate and lilac point).
Other colors, such as red point, cream point, lynx (tabby) point, and tortie point, can be found in Javanese.
Although longhaired Siamese kittens were seen in some litters, it wasn’t until the mid-1950s that longhaired Siamese cats were actively bred.
CFF granted championship status to the breed for the first time in 1961.
The Balinese, like its parent breed, the Siamese, is an active, affectionate, talkative, and inquisitive breed.
It enjoys getting underfoot and being a part of everything its owner does.
There is no job that two hands cannot perform that a Balinese believes two hands and four paws cannot perform better.
5. Bengal Cat Breed
The Bengal is the result of crossbreeding between wild Asian Leopard Cats and domestic shorthairs.
The first Bengal breeding program started in 1963, and the breed was accepted for championship status in TICA in 1984.
It’s a big cat with a short, shiny coat.
Although they are most commonly seen in the brown spotted tabby pattern, they can also be found in the marbled pattern (classic tabby).
Glittering refers to a coat effect that appears to be sprinkled with glitter; rosetted refers to the spots forming distinct patterns, preferably with more than one color tone within the spot.
Color patterns with a pale white or cream background, such as seal sepia, seal lynx, and seal mink, are commonly referred to as “snow” Bengals.
Bengals that have been well-bred are active, intelligent companions.
Buyers should inquire about the number of generations removed from wild blood that Bengal kittens are; the best companion cats are at least four generations removed.
Most pet Bengals are only wild in appearance, not in personality.
An SBT (stud book tradition) Bengal represents at least four generations of Bengal-to-Bengal breeding and is thus no less than four generations removed from wild blood.
Bengals from F1 to F4 (filial) are one to four generations removed (F1 is the offspring of a Bengal-to-Asian Leopard Cat breeding, an F2 is the offspring of Bengal-to-Bengal breeding with at least one F1 involved, and so on).
As a result, an SBT cat would be at least an F5.
Most Bengals kept as pets are F4s or SBTs; cats with more wild blood may be difficult to care for.
6. Bobtail Cat Breed
The American Bobtail is a naturally occurring brawny short-tailed cat that ranges in size from medium to large and has a shaggy, semi-longhair coat.
It should be fleshy and muscular, but not overly fat.
When the cat is alert, the tail is short, reaching halfway to the hock, and should stand erect.
The cat’s appearance belies a calm temperament, though he may be reserved with strangers at first.
Males can be proportionally larger than females and have male characteristics like jowls.
The coat’s seasonal variations should be recognized.
This cat should have a wild appearance rather than a wild temperament.
7. Japanese Bobtail Cat Breed
The Japanese Bobtail is a naturally occurring breed that has been around for at least a thousand years in Japan.
It is distinguished by its naturally short tail, which resembles the tail of a rabbit.
No two tails are ever the same.
The tail, on the other hand, should not be handled roughly and should not be “straightened.”
The kinks and curves are an inherent feature of the tail.
The tri-color, or mi-ke (white with red and black) good-luck pattern is the most commonly seen Japanese Bobtail pattern, but other colors and patterns are also acceptable.
The Japanese Bobtail was introduced to the United States in 1968 and was granted championship status in the CFA in 1976, but only in the shorthaired variety.
Longhaired Bobtails were given the same honor in the CFA seventeen years later.
This breed is known in both shorthaired and semi-longhaired forms.
Their coats are silky and require little grooming.
The Japanese Bobtail is a gregarious, friendly, and active cat.
They are intelligent and talkative, even engaging in lengthy discussions with “their” people.
Although they enjoy talking, they are not noisy and do not have loud voices, despite their ability to produce a wide range of sounds.
8. British Shorthair Cat Breed
The British Shorthair is a stocky, sturdy cat with the appearance of a plush teddy bear.
It is a peaceful and quiet companion.
While solid blue is the color most associated with the breed, so much so that it is sometimes referred to as the British Blue, “Brits” can also be found in a variety of other colors and patterns.
Except for colorpoint, it is accepted in the majority of colors and patterns.
The British Shorthair breed, like the Abyssinian, suffered significant losses during World War II in England, and other breeds were introduced to supplement the gene pool and restore the old type.
The ACA accepted it for championship status in the United States for the first time in 1967; CFA did not accept it until 1980.
In the United Kingdom, this breed is simply known as “Shorthair.”
9. Burmese Cat Breed
All Burmese can trace their ancestry back to a cat named Wong Mau, who arrived in the United States in the 1920s.
The Burmese was accepted for CFA studbook registration in 1936, but championship status was not granted until 1957.
Burmese cats have a sleek, glossy coat and are lively, affectionate, and even-tempered.
Because of their muscularity, they appear to be quite heavy.
They remain playful well into adulthood and old age.
Though the American-type Burmese’s original color is solid sable brown, other colors (not recognized by all associations) include blue, champagne, platinum, and tortie.
American Burmese are typically bred in two varieties: traditional and contemporary, with the latter having a more rounded appearance.
They can only be accepted in the four traditional colors of sable, champagne, platinum, and blue.
European (Foreign) Burmese are available in brown, chocolate, red, cream, and tortie colors, whereas American-type Burmese can only be bred in the traditional four colors.
Those interested in this breed should visit the European Burmese breed page.
In the 1960s, British breeders broadened the color palette by breeding Burmese to red point Siamese and British Shorthairs, ushering in the European or Foreign Burmese.
The European Burmese is both elegant and robust.
European Burmese come in a variety of colors, including brown, chocolate, red, cream, and tortie.
It is distinguished from (American-style) Burmese not only by its color palette, but also by a less extreme facial style.
Burmese studbook registration in the CFA was actually suspended from 1947 to 1953 in order to put an end to the practice of outcrossing Burmese to Siamese.
Surprisingly, the Tonkinese breed was created by cross-breeding Siamese and Burmese.
The irony is that Wong Mau, the mother of the Burmese breed, is now widely thought to be a Burmese-Siamese cross herself.
10. Chartreux Cat Breed
The Chartreux is an ancient natural breed that originated in France and is said to have been raised as a companion by Carthusian monks.
Cats resembling the modern Chartreux were first described in France in the 1700s.
In 1931, the first cat to be shown under the breed name Chartreux was seen at a European cat show.
They first arrived in the United States in 1970 and won the CFA championship in 1987.
It is a sturdy, sweet-tempered cat with a woolly blue coat, brilliant orange eyes, and a smiling expression.
Chartreux do not need to be groomed on a daily basis, but regular combing during shedding seasons is recommended.
Brushing is strongly discouraged by Chartreux breeders because it pulls out the undercoat, leaving a very ugly, spiky-looking coat with only guard hair remaining.
Furthermore, a brush is not nearly as effective as a comb in removing the massive volume of loose, woolly hairs on this breed.
Chartreux cats are extremely quiet; in fact, some don’t meow at all.
They are alert, gentle, and adaptable cats who enjoy spending time with their favorite people.
Chartreux breeders generally follow the French tradition of naming all kittens born in a specific year beginning with a specific letter of the alphabet.
Breeders in Chartreux omit the letters K, Q, W, X, Y, and Z.
Chartreux born in 2002 will have names that begin with the letter T, 2003 with the letter U, and 2004 with the letter V; in 2005, the names will begin with the letter A.
11. Exotic Shorthair Cat Breed
The Persian body and head shape are shared by the Exotic, but it has a short, plush coat.
The breed was developed in the 1950s and 1960s by crossing Persians and various shorthaired breeds, though CFA restricted outcrosses to the American Shorthair when it was accepted for championship status in 1967.
In most associations, the breed is known as the Exotic Shorthair.
It is referred to as the Exotic in this context because some longhaired offspring of Exotics are known as Exotic Longhairs, and at least a few organizations recognize this as a distinct breed.
Exotics come in the same spectrum of colors and patterns as the Persian breed.
The Exotic, like the Persian, is a docile, gentle cat with a soft voice.
They are gentle pets who enjoy sitting on laps and the finer things in life.
The Exotic is sometimes referred to as the “lazy man’s Persian” because it has the same body and head type as the Persian but does not require daily grooming.
12. La Perm Cat Breed
The LaPerm breed descended from a barn cat named Speedy, who was discovered in 1982, and her kitten Curly, who was one of the first documented ancestors of the current LaPerm breed.
This breed has a curly coat and is unrelated to the Rex breeds.
They are gentle, patient, and affectionate while also being moderately active.
LaPerm litters can produce kittens with straight hair, curly hair, or no hair at all.
Because the breed does not breed true for curly hair, litters may contain a mix of hair types.
All patterns and colors are welcome.
They are on the small side for breeds, with males weighing in at around 8 pounds and females weighing in at around 6 pounds.
Because its curly coat does not mat easily, the breed is low-maintenance and requires little grooming.
It only requires a bath and towel drying, as blow drying can cause the coat to become frizzy.
Interesting breed fact: Many LaPerm kittens go through a serious “ugly duckling” stage that can last up to four months.
Some kittens go bald, usually starting at the top of the head and working their way down.
During this time, their hair may grow and fall out several times.
13. Maine Coon – Cat Breed
The Maine Coon is distinguished by its large size, easygoing temperament, and rugged appearance.
With a heavy, shaggy coat, bushy tail, and tufted ears and toes, this native New England breed is well-adapted to that harsh climate.
They have a long, rectangular body, square muzzles, and the overall appearance of a strong cat that is an excellent hunter and hard worker.
Despite its name, the Maine Coon cat is not a raccoon relative.
The name refers to the resemblance of the tail of a tabby Maine Coon to that of a raccoon.
It is genetically impossible for raccoons and cats to mate.
Though the brown tabby pattern is the most well-known, Maine Coons come in a variety of colors and patterns.
The first Maine Coon recognized as such in cat literature was in 1861, with a black and white cat named “Captain Jinks of the Horse Marines,” after a popular song at the time.
A brown tabby named Cosie won the Madison Square Garden show in 1895.
Molly Bond, a Maine Coon, was the fifth cat to be registered in the new CFA in 1908.
Unfortunately, the Maine Coon’s popularity declined shortly after this until the 1950s, owing to the importation of more exotic-looking cats like the Persian and Siamese.
After the 1950s, the Maine’s popularity skyrocketed, and it is now one of the world’s most popular cat breeds, second only to the Persian.
Maine Coons can grow to be quite large; males weighing more than twenty pounds are not uncommon.
Females are generally smaller than males, but still significantly larger than the average housecat.
14. Nebelung Cat Breed
The Nebelung is a modern re-creation of the longhaired Russian Blue cat, dating back to the mid-1980s.
Siegfried and Brunhilde, the foundation cats for the United States Nebelungs, were born in 1984 and 1985, respectively.
Although the longhaired Russian cat was first shown in England over a century ago, it did not become popular in the cat world until the late twentieth century.
It has a slender build and a medium-length, silky blue coat.
Except for coat length, the TICA standard for the Nebelung is identical to that of the Russian Blue.
Nebelungs, like Russian Blues, make affectionate, devoted companions, though they may be shy with strangers, particularly young children, at first.
Nebelungs may require a little more time to adjust to new surroundings.
The breed is extremely rare and is currently only available in the United States, Germany, the Netherlands, and Russia.
15. Norwegian Forest Cat Breed
Unlike some other cat breeds with geographical names, the Norwegian Forest Cat originated in Norway.
It is a tough, sturdy cat with a thick, heavy coat that is well-equipped to withstand the harsh Scandinavian winters.
They have almond-shaped eyes and a sweet demeanor.
“Wegies” (WEE-jees) come in a variety of colors and patterns, but are most commonly found in tabby patterns with white.
Although they have a superficial resemblance to the Maine Coon, primarily in coloration, they are completely different cats.
They have more compact bodies, straighter profiles, and very sweet expressions.
The nose and eartips should form an equilateral triangle.
They are a slow-maturing breed that takes five years to reach full size and development.
Males typically reach adult weights of fifteen to eighteen pounds, while females are slightly smaller.
The first documented appearance of this breed in the show world was at a cat show in Oslo, Norway in 1938, but the outbreak of World War II put the breed on hold for the next few decades.
Norwegian breeders made a concerted effort to preserve this breed in the 1970s, and by 1977 had standardized the breed in their country, with the first breeding pair exported to the United States in late 1979.
They are a loving, affectionate, but not overly vocal cat.
They require regular grooming to keep their coats in good condition, as their full undercoats can mat if not cared for properly.
16. Persian Cat Breed
The Persian, the most well-known and easily recognized cat breed, comes in a variety of colors and patterns.
Himalayans are Persians with the colorpoint (“Siamese”) pattern.
Individuals looking for this pattern are also encouraged to look through the Himalayan breeders list.
The Persian is known as a Longhair in GCCF, and the Himalayan is known as a Colorpoint Longhair.
The British standard requires a more moderate face shape than the typical American-style Persian.
Lavender and chocolate solids
In CFF, Persians are referred to as Kashmiris.
It is still called by this breed name in some older cat breed books.
CFF distinguishes between the Persian and the Pekefaced Persian.
A Pekefaced Persian is a Persian with a flat face, similar to that of a Pekingese dog.
Some breeders refer to their Persians as doll-faced, implying that they have a more moderate face type than the flatter-faced show-type Persian.
Persians are one of the oldest established breeds, with documentation dating back to the early 1500s in their native land.
Early examples of the breed were among those who took part in 1871 in England, and they were among the first cats registered with the CFA when it was founded in 1909.
The Persian cat is docile, gentle, and affectionate.
They are playful in their own way, despite their calm demeanor.
Their long hair easily mats.
Extensive daily grooming, at least 10-15 minutes per day, is required, with a thorough one-hour grooming session once a week to keep the coat in good condition.
Interesting fact: The Persian is the most popular and possibly the most recognizable breed of cat. Although many people cannot name more than a few cat breeds, almost everyone can name the Persian. Because there are so many Persians in the show ring, many associations treat color classes (solid, tabby, silver, etc.) as separate breeds for judging.
Annual registrations of Persian kittens of a single color frequently outnumber those of entire breeds.
17. Russian Blue Cat Breed
The Russian Blue is a naturally occurring breed that is thought to have originated in northern Russia.
The Archangel Cat is an old name for the cat because it is thought to have originated in the port city of Archangelsk.
Much of the breed’s history is unknown.
In 1890, the first Russian Blues were imported into England.
Like so many other breeds in England, this breed was nearly extinct during World War II, and Siamese had to be used to broaden the gene pool.
As a result, restoring the Russian Blue’s plush coat took years of careful breeding.
The first Russian Blue appeared in the CFA stud books in 1949, descended from cats imported to the United States in 1947, but no Russian Blue achieved Grand Champion status until fifteen years later.
Russian Blues are distinguished by their short, plush, silvery blue coat, brilliant green eyes, and semi-foreign body type, which includes long legs and body.
This is a graceful, playful breed with a quiet, shy demeanor.
They are reserved around strangers but fiercely loyal to family.
Some Russian Blue kittens are born with “ghost stripes,” but these fade with age to the familiar, solid silvery blue of adulthood.
The American and European types have diverged slightly; traditional Scandanavian-type Russian Blues are larger and more heavily built than American Russian Blues.
Different colors are accepted by Australian and New Zealand associations (see Associations).
18. Singapura Cat Breed
The origins of the Singapura breed are debatable, but the breed’s allure and subsequent acceptance are not.
It was granted CFA championship status in 1988, the same year that the first Singapuras were imported into the United Kingdom from the United States.
The breed has remained uncommon.
The Singapura is a shorthaired cat with large eyes and a warm beige and brown-ticked coat.
The coat color is known as sepia agouti or brown ticked agouti; regardless of the names, it is the same color and the only color in which Singapuras can be found.
They have soft, gentle voices and enjoy being in the company of their favorite people.
They are mischievous, friendly, gentle, and outgoing.
Singapura cats are the tiniest of all known cat breeds.
Females can weigh as little as four pounds as adults, while males weigh around six pounds.
They are muscular cats, almost stocky in build, despite their small size.
They are not “miniature” or delicate cats.
19. Sphynx Cat Breed
The Sphynx is distinguished by its lack of hair, though it is actually covered by a soft down. This is not the fabled Mexican Hairless Cat; the breed originated in Canada, with a black and white mixed-breed cat named Elizabeth producing hairless kittens. True story
Sphynxes have very little hair (except on the bridges of their noses and the backs of their ears), but pet Sphynxes may have more. Expect to pay a higher price for one with almost no hair.
They come in a wide range of colors and patterns. “Hair-free” does not imply “low-maintenance.” Even completely hairless Sphynx produce natural oils to maintain a “coat,” so they must be bathed on a regular basis (oily cats may leave grease stains on the furniture or develop blocked pores). Owners must clean the ears on a regular basis due to the size and lack of hair in the ears.
The Sphynx is also not always a good choice for an allergic household. Despite the lack of hair, they are not hypoallergenic.
They continue to produce allergy-inducing dander and saliva. The Sphynx is a loving and cheerful companion cat. They are sociable, alert, and inquisitive, and they enjoy the company of humans and other pets. To the touch, their skin feels like warm, soft suede.
20. Turkish Angora Cat Breed
The Turkish Angora is a semi-longhaired cat native to Turkey.
Cats from the Ankara Zoo’s breeding program were brought back to the United States in 1962, sparking interest in this ancient breed.
They have a fine, silky coat and are long-bodied and graceful.
Although white is the most well-known color, they are also available in a variety of other colors and patterns.
This breed is intelligent, quick-witted, active, and agile.
“Turkeys” can be very opinionated and stubborn; once they have formed an opinion, it is difficult to change their minds.
Those who have lived with them claim that Turks are one of the few breeds that have a sense of humor.
They require active play and will become bored if left alone for extended periods of time.
They are not large cats, weighing between 5 and 9 pounds on average.
Females, like almost all other cat breeds, are typically smaller than males.
Some Turkish Angora breeders import cats from their homeland, where they are still highly valued.
This fresh blood is a vital source of outcrosses for this remarkable and beautiful breed.
A breeder who advertises “imported lines” is most likely using foundation stock from Turkey.