So you’re thinking about getting…a Ragdoll Cat
Sometimes described as ‘puppy cats’ or ‘puppy-like’, Ragdoll cats make excellent family pets because they love to be around people and are much more affectionate than the average cat. When you also consider their big blue eyes, cute faces, silky coats and easy-going nature, its no wonder they are increasingly popular choices.
With their beautiful big blue eyes, smiley faces and distinctive semi-longhaired coats, it’s easy to fall in love with a Ragdoll cat. Ragdolls come in six different colours: seal (dark brown), blue (bluish grey), chocolate, lilac, red and cream, and a number of basic patterns including:
- Colourpoint – where the basic colour is darker on the ‘points’ (paws, tail, ears and face)
- Mitted – where there is also white on some of the points (front paws, rear legs, chest and chin)
- Bi-colour – where the face has two different colours
Whatever the colour or pattern combination, a Ragdoll is a wonderfully beautiful and sweet-natured cat.
Ragdolls make incredible companions. They love being with people and will follow you around like a fluffy shadow, looking for love and affection. They are even known to greet you at the door when you get home, such is their desire for human company. Being so gentle, affectionate and laid back, Ragdolls are perfect for families with children. They love to play and do so with their claws retracted, leading to far fewer ‘accidents’!
Because they have such easy-going natures, Ragdolls do not fare so well in the rough and tumble of the outside world, and so are particularly suited to being indoor cats. But just because they are nice and relaxed, it doesn’t mean they’re not intelligent. With a bit of patience, it’s possible to teach Ragdolls basic tricks, like ‘fetch’ and ‘roll-over’.
Despite their laid-back characters, Ragdolls still have needs that must be met. They do not like to be left alone for long-periods and can get bored if they’re not stimulated. They are also sticklers for routine, and will not appreciate changes to meal times or major upheavals in their home environment. Ragdolls have a lot of love to give, but they also need a lot of love in return!
Ragdoll vital statistics
Ragdolls are large and strong for domestic cats; males can weigh 6-9kgs, and females 4.5-7kg. They mature slowly, not reaching full size until they are 4 years old, and will typically live for 15 years or more if cared for properly and provided with a good diet.
Ragdoll health problems
Although they are generally robust, Ragdolls are prone to suffering from a hereditary heart condition called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. If you are getting a Ragdoll kitten, check with the breeder that neither parent cat has this condition.
Ragdolls are known for their beautiful, silky coats – which also means they are quite high maintenance when it comes to brushing and grooming. Because they are semi-longhaired, their coats can get tangled and knotted and so they need to be groomed frequently with a steel comb or brush. But don’t worry – Ragdolls love to be fussed over, and the more you do it, the more they will adore you!
Little bundles of fluffy joy, Ragdoll kittens are usually ready for their new home after 12 weeks. Like all cats, early experiences are important and spending time playing with them and loving them will ensure that they grow into a warm, loyal, affectionate companion.
While adult Ragdolls are not fussy eaters, kittens can suffer from upset tummies. It’s therefore important to stick with a regular feeding schedule – the same, good quality food at the same times every day. If you do change their food, do so gradually over several days.
Is a Ragdoll Cat right for you?
Ragdolls have an incredibly giving nature – but they also have needs that must be met in return. They like a stable, predictable environment and they hate to be alone. So if your home is rarely empty during the day, and you are able to maintain a stable feeding routine, then a Ragdoll might just be the one for you.
Read our ultimate checklist for getting kittens.