How To Buy a Ragdoll Cat: What to Know, Look for and Avoid

Ragdoll cats are beautiful cats and have a way of catching people’s eyes and hearts. If you have been struck by the “I want a Ragdoll cat” vibe and are starting your research on what you need to know when buying a Ragdoll cat, you have come to the right place!

We have compiled much of the research for you including the main characteristics of Ragdoll cats, the questions you need to ask yourself before buying a Ragdoll cat, the different avenues there are to purchasing a Ragdoll cat, the conversations you need to have with a reputable Ragdoll cat breeder or individual seller when meeting them, the average Ragdoll cat price, as well as some of the additional costs involved in adding a Ragdoll cat to your family overall. 

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What is a Ragdoll Cat?

Pets Can Play Ultimate Cat Tunnel Product Review Ragdoll cat sticking its paws and head through a tunnel hole.jpg

Ragdoll cats are one of the most sought-after breeds on the market with some of their top characteristics including lots of fur, a bluish grey coloring, large size, silky coats, and their overall genetic predisposition to be an affectionate cat. With lots of love and a little bit of patience, you and your new Ragdoll cat can be the best companions for a long time.

There are different categories that purebred Ragdoll cats typically fall under and choosing which one is for you will be based primarily on what you are wanting the cat for.

Are you looking for a high pedigree cat for show purposes? Are you looking for a new cat because your home feels lonely and you want a buddy to hang out with? Are you looking to possibly become a Ragdoll breeder and need some high-quality cats for your breeding stock? No matter what you are looking for the Ragdoll breed of cat is a big cat that can fill many different spaces in your life.

There are four different categories of Ragdoll cats to choose from. Understanding each of them will help you make a better choice for your lifestyle:

  • Pet Alter Quality-Mismarked: Not 100% up-to-the-standard on type, but will have the temperament of a show-quality Ragdoll cat. The cat has been neutered or spayed. 
  • Show Alter Quality: Perfect markings. Perfect Type. Has been neutered or spayed.
  • Breeder Quality: Has good type and temperament. Can be mismarked for show.
  • Show/Breeder Quality: Perfect markings, perfect type, everything you would want in show-quality Ragdolls. This type should include a pedigree certificate at purchase. 

For more detailed information on the different types of Ragdoll cats please check out our link on Ragdolls Breed and Genetics

Deciding Where to Purchase Your Ragdoll Cat

There are many different avenues you can choose to go when finding the perfect Ragdoll cat for you. One of the main considerations you will want to consider is whether or not you are looking for a young kitten at just a few weeks of age or an adult cat.

hobbs and maddie Seal mitted ragdoll cats with blazes in necoichi cat scratcher bowls IMG_1828
Hobbs and Maddie, seal mitted Ragdoll cats with blazes in Necoichi cat scratcher bowls

When you choose to buy from a breeder you will typically be buying a kitten, whereas if you choose to look into a rescue or shelter the cats will usually be older and might have some issues adjusting to a different lifestyle, although it probably won’t take any more patience or time than training a brand new kitten!  

No matter where you choose to buy your Ragdoll cat the two main features you need to look for are a good temperament and bright blue eyes! Their cute faces can win you over no matter what stage of life they are in.

Buying from a Ragdoll Cat Breeder

There are some advantages to buying your Ragdoll cat from a good breeder, and that is why it often comes with a higher price tag, but you still need to be diligent with getting all of the necessary information and not expect them to just have it ready for you.

It is a good idea to have your questions written down when you go so that you don’t get distracted by the cats’ big blue eyes and forget about checking on things like if they have a family history of bladder stones, heart disease, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, or other health conditions.

Hobbs a Seal mitted ragdoll cat with a blaze IMG_2927
Hobbs, a seal mitted Ragdoll cat with a blaze

Some questions you should ask the breeder include:

  • Do you have the vaccination records available?
  • Are the kitten’s parents on-site? Can I see them?
  • Are there any known health problems in the bloodline?
  • How long have you been a breeder for Ragdoll cats?
  • Has the kitten been tested for any possible genetic defects?
  • Do they offer any type of health guarantee?
  • Have they established themselves as a reputable breeder?

If you are looking at purchasing a Ragdoll cat to show you will want to develop a more detailed list of questions along with accessing pedigree records, and a thorough check-over for the correct markings. 

Another thing to observe when visiting a breeder is how they interact with their cats. Do their cats seem comfortable with them? Are they relaxed or are they tense? Some breeders simply raise cats as breeding stock and aren’t as interested in the relationship they might build with their pets. While this isn’t necessarily a reason to buy or not buy from a particular breeder it will have an effect on the cat’s overall disposition.

Buying a Ragdoll Cat from a Rescue or Shelter

Buying a Ragdoll cat from a rescue or shelter can be a great opportunity for you and for your potential new friend, but there are some things you need to keep in mind when going this route. 

Be prepared to fill out a detailed questionnaire. A few of the questions that will probably be included in this will be:

  • Who all lives in your home? (people and other pets)
  • Have you ever owned a Ragdoll or similar breed of the cat before?
  • What do you do for a living?
  • What is your home environment like? Is it an apartment? Do you have any outside space? 
  • Do you have a family veterinarian?
  • Do you have a plan in place to take care of the Ragdoll cat after you take it home?
  • Do you do a lot of traveling?
  • Are you prepared for any unexpected costs that might arise for injury or illness of your new Ragdoll cat?

Don’t be put off by all of these questions. The shelter has possibly rescued this Ragdoll cat from a bad situation and they want to do their best at finding a secure and loving new home so that there is no more trauma for the cat to go through. A cat’s life should be full of a lot of love and attention and that is what they are trying to find when pairing a shelter or rescue cat with their new companion.

If you are looking for a Ragdoll rescue cat please visit our article that is dedicated solely to Ragdoll Rescue for more information. 

how to buy a ragdoll cat Blue Mitted Ragdoll Cat Ash Close up Blue Eyes
Ash, a blue mitted Ragdoll cat

Be Aware of Breeder Scams

As with most large purchases, there are always scammers out there trying to take advantage of people’s hearts and wallets. Here are a few of the most well-known scam operations when it comes to Ragdoll Cat Breeders, but be sure and do your research before completing any purchase. There are a lot of backyard breeders out there just trying to take your money on one of the most popular cat breeds out there without actually offering you a high-quality cat.

how to buy a ragdoll cat a fluffy baby ragdoll kitten sitting on a cat bed
Charlie, a seal mited Ragdoll kitten with a blaze

Another thing to think about when purchasing your Ragdoll cat from a breeder is that they will more than likely require you to place a deposit on your cat before you pick it up. This gives them the security that you will move forward with the purchase and can often determine who gets the first pick of a litter, as many begin to sell the kittens before they are even born. You may also be put on a waiting list depending on how many kittens the breeder has available.

This is another reason to complete your research on the breeder and make sure they have a positive history with their buyers to make sure you don’t put a deposit down on a cat and then they disappear. 

Keep in mind that these are average prices and can vary depending on where you live and what the demand is for Ragdoll cats in your area. 

Here are some Ragdoll cat prices that one may expect to pay:

Quality:Approximate Cost:Notes:
Pet (Alter) QualityUSD$1200-USD $2800+Some breeders charge more for females due to the fact that spaying costs more than neutering, also some breeders will charge more for rare, or non-traditional color patterns, like TortiesCreamsLilacs, and Flames.
Show (Alter) QualityUSD$1500- USD $4000+This is a Ragdoll cat that is perfectly marked to be shown at cat shows but is spayed or neutered.
Breeder QualityUSD$1800- USD $3000+This is a Ragdoll cat that is fit for breeding and should also have been tested to be free of genetic diseases.
Show/Breeder QualityUSD$2300- USD $5000+This is a Ragdoll cat that is perfectly marked to be shown at cat shows and is also fit for breeding.

Costs of Maintaining Ragdoll Cats

Ragdoll kitten laying on its back playing
Trigg, a blue lynx mitted Ragdoll kitten

Budgeting for the purchase of your Ragdoll cat is only the beginning. You also need to be prepared for the maintenance and upkeep so that your cat is able to truly live its best life. While there will always be unplanned costs such as emergency surgeries or a broken claw or tooth, the basics can be more predictable, but can definitely add up if you haven’t prepared yourself for them. 

Some of the basic costs of maintaining Ragdoll cats include

  • Regular vet check-ups
  • Required vaccinations
  • Good Quality Food and Treats
  • Litter Box/Litter
  • Toys
  • Regular Grooming
  • Assorted Accessories such as a pet carrier, collar, cat trees, cat bed, etc. 
  • Spay/Neuter Fees (if this wasn’t done before you bought your Ragdoll cat)
  • Pet Insurance

Other Things to Consider When Buying a Ragdoll Cat

Some other factors to consider when buying a ragdoll cat include the age of the cat, their pedigree, the real reason you are looking for a Ragdoll cat (ex: for a companion vs to show professionally), their personality, breeding purposes, and anything else that might fall outside of the “I just really want a Ragdoll cat because they are beautiful” category! 

Owning a Ragdoll Cat

Ragdoll cats make great companions along with many other fun character traits. As with any pet, it’s important to understand that owning a Ragdoll cat doesn’t come without responsibility, some work, and the ability to care for them financially. 

Ragdoll cats have great personalities and most of them will help boost your spirits at the end of a long day by curling up in your lap and relaxing like a true ragdoll. Their variety of sizes and colors make them a diverse breed that can fit well in many different types of households. 

Whichever option you choose for getting your Ragdoll cat we hope that you found the information in this article useful in your process! We look forward to hearing from you and seeing pictures of you with your new Ragdoll cat!

Mordekai is a pet quality Ragdoll. He is a flame lynx mitted.

While he does have nice deep eye color and a good body type, he is mismarked. His blaze is too wide and his hock should be white but he has a spot of red on it.

You’ll want to determine the importance of a Ragdoll’s physical appearance before deciding how to buy a Ragdoll cat.

A Lifetime Commitment!

So, while you do your research about how to buy a Ragdoll cat, keep in mind the lifetime costs of owning one. It is a lifetime commitment to owning a soul that you commit to care for.

Is there something on this page that we didn’t answer?

Please contact with information you have about buying a Ragdoll cat if that’s the case, or simply leave a question or inquiry in the comment section below. We read them all and love talking to you!

What experiences can you share about buying your Ragdoll cat? Please comment below.

Did you enjoy reading about how to buy a Ragdoll cat? Then, you’re going to love these other posts we have:

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Hi, I’m Jenny Dean, creator of Floppycats! Ever since my Aunt got the first Ragdoll cat in our family, I have loved the breed. Inspired by my childhood Ragdoll cat, Rags, I created Floppycats to connect, share and inspire other Ragdoll cat lovers around the world,

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  1. I like to study breeds of cat and I was thinking about getting a ragdoll. But this is good information. Thank you for posting this great website.

  2. Bella Wiley says:

    vI appreciated that you pointed out the importance of knowing and understanding the breeder terminology when purchasing ragdolls cats.

    My husband and I plan to adopt or buy a cat, and we want to make sure that we make the right choice; I’m glad I came across this article and read about things to know when buying the said pet.

    I will share this with my husband and see how this can help us decide where and when to buy one.

  3. Margaret Frances Chavez says:

    It was important for me to find a breeder who also showed their kitties. I wanted a pet quality, but I felt that if they also showed, then they would be breeding for the betterment of the breed and not to make a quick dollar. I got a healthy pet quality kitty and I have never been happier.

  4. Teresa Reid says:

    Agree with everything Patti just said. Thanks for the info Jenny and hope that anyone looking for a Ragdoll will also look at Petfinder to see if there are any Ragdolls that need rehoming. Saw a gorgeous little one there about a year ago and she was snapped up before I could get back to see her again!♥♥♥♥♥

  5. Great post, Jenny! Such a great reference source here on Floppycats for anyone looking to bring one of these very special kittehs into their lives! Yay!

    Thank you so much for the great & invaluable information!

    Big hugs!

    Patti & Miss Pink Sugarbelle 🙂 <3

  6. Katherine Mason says:


    I am in the UK and i have seen a few websites saying it is not wise to give a Ragdoll certain vaccinations. Is this true as i would ideally wish to have mine done so that i can get them insured.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you.

    1. The breeder I got my boy from was also a vet and she highly recommended against any vaccinations except the core FRVCP, because ragdolls are more sensitive and commonly have bad reactions. Unfortunately, the rabies vaccination was required by law in my state – they will fine you if you take an unvaccinated animal to the vet even! So I had to give my baby the rabies vaccination and he got incredibly ill. Thanks to our lovely laws, he can’t get a medical exemption so every three years he has to be drugged up with steroids and anti-inflammatories just to get his rabies booster. After these experiences, my nice, sweet boy who used to give his vet kisses now has to have mild tranquilizers before we go or he will attack the vet.

      I know in the UK you don’t have mandatory rabies vaccination, so stay away from that one in my opinion. Have them do the core, but maybe have it split into the three individual vaccinations and have them done one at a time on your baby. Then, if he is sensitive, you will know what vaccine did it and can try to avoid any boosters. I also will not give my boy the FeLV, FIV, or FIP even though the vet constantly tries to convince me on the FeLV one. I just don’t want to risk it after his other adverse reaction.

      1. I would phone round all the vets and see if this inflexible attitude towards the rabies vaccine is common or if there is a vet who understands that a cat who has already had a significant reaction should be exposed any further.

        Seriously, I often think some of these vets are more interested in the money than the welfare of our beloved furry babies.

        1. His vet was amazing actually – she was a certified feline practitioner at a cat-only vet and knew her stuff. It was the state law combined with the city ordinances and apartment regulations. To live in an apartment with a pet, you needed to show proof of a license and to get the license, you had to show proof of rabies vaccination, no exemptions. It was terrible.

          We moved to another state since then which only has a county ordinance, no state law, and no licenses for cats. Needless to say, I did not let my baby get a rabies shot when he turned five and we were living here!! The initial vac and the treatment after scarred my kitty for good when it comes to vets and the one-year and two-year were not much better. I miss his old vet but I do not miss those darn laws! Now if only I could erase his memory of it all so I could take him for check-ups without all the drama!

    2. I would speak to lots of different insurance companies before having my kittens vaccinated unnecessarily. What humans forget is that vaccination involves putting either killed or modified live VIRUSES into a solution and injecting it into their immune system to build antibodies. This can often cause symptoms of the virus itself until the cat has built sufficient antibodies to stave it off. It also has the effect of leaving the cat vulnerable to other infections while it’s immune system is fighting the primary vaccination virus.

      UC Davies has an excellent article here – and the consensus among the better informed vets is that over-vaccination is rife in the industry. Once a kitten has had it’s first shots for calicivirus, panleukopenia and rhinotracheitis (RCP) around 12 weeks, it should only need the same again at 16 weeks with a 1 year booster. After this, the cat’s ability to produce antibodies should be fine – but if there is doubt get the vet to run a vaccination titer to confirm. This may be a little more expensive than getting new shots, but ragdolls do not take shots well and the risk of sarcomas is something every pet parents should be aware of.

      The breeder from whom I got my three ragdolls specifically advises against FeLV and FIP vaccinations as she has had bad experiences with those vaccines.

      Luckily Britain still has no rabies so there is absolutely no need to put your cat at risk unless you propose making it an outdoor roamer, which is not recommended with the ragdoll breed.

      Hope this helps. I’m not a vet or vet tech but before I got my kittens I spent several hours researching vaccines on animals in general and cats and breed-specific cats in particular.

      1. It’s good to see that I am not the only one being against vaccins! When I talk about this I get this stare from people sometimes, as if I was telling them I was letting my cat die or something..

    3. I live in the UK & my cats have all our normal vaccinations EXCEPT feline leukaemia which I won’t let them have – there are reports of carcinomas at the injection site. This is only transferred by a bite & as my cats are indoor only & do not come into contact with any other cats they don’t need it. Rabies isn’t a UK vaccination as we are rabies free as a country. You can get insurance for your cats whether or not they’re vaccinated, but you won’t be covered for anything preventable by vaccination. Also bear in mind that if you need to put your cat in a cattery at any time they will not accept un vaccinated cats.

  7. Julie Brashears says:

    I am looking for a reputable breeder in Fort Worth, Tx…or Dallas….Can you give me names of some breeders. I have been searching and searching as I lost my Sophie, the most beautiful Ragdoll, and the sweetest….I miss her so badly…I know I can’t replace her, but I need a new little friend…..Any help you can give me, I would appreciate it…
    Thank you very much,
    Julie Brashears

  8. a web site that I used to find my ragdoll 🙂

  9. don’t forget to check! you can specify breed and see what shelters nearby might have one!

  10. Hi, I’m looking for a breeder in Maryland, do you know any reputable? Thank you!!

  11. We lost our two furry family members a few years ago. Our big boy, we had for 15 yrs. He died in 2008 from complications of the diabetes. His sister went a couple years after from what we’re not exactly sure. All I know is we miss them very badly. I went around to the rescue groups and shelters. We went to the shelters and rescue groups, but all we are finding are animals that aren’t very healthy and not well socialized. So, we are strongly considering purchasing a purebred. In particular a Ragdoll. We feel guilty thinking of buying a pet. We’ve never done it. However, trying to find a pet that fits in with our family has been difficult. In doing research, we came upon the Ragdoll. A friend of a friend of mine has one and loves her baby. As well as my son’s friend who purchased a Ragdoll, Jiggs a year or two ago. He adores this little kitty. We went on Animal Plant to research the Ragdoll breed. The more we thought about it the more we fell in love with Radgolls. It would be the perfect match for our family. The difficulty is how do you pick a quality breeder? There is also a concern the breeder is doing genetic testing on her animals. Also, this breeder will give at least a two to three yr genetic health guarantee. IA purebred Ragdoll is a big purchase. Is there anyone who can offer me guidance?

  12. at Maria in Cyprus

    Hi there. I am the breeder Jenny reached out to. I live in Slovakia and breed ragdolls. I also have not heard of any ragdoll breeders in Cyprus, so it seems that if you want a ragdoll, you might have to import it. Are you interested in a pet kitten (the baby is not for future breeding and comes already neutered) or do you want to start breeding ragdolls (in that case, I recommend some reading about this).
    I flew to Larnaka last summer and spent time in Paphos and Nicosia and we have a straight flight connection there.
    In case you plan to import a kitten of any breed, I truly recommend flying with the kitten on board (as a carry-on luggage). It is less stressful for the kitten as it can be with you and you can calm it down if neccessary and it is also lot cheaper than having kitten shipped to you as cargo. A pet boy from my breeding lives in Denmark and his owner and he flew to Denmark from Vienna, the kitten´s ticket cost 25€ (but it can be obviously more with different flight carriers). The boy did very well, he was calm and quiet and slept the whole way but he meowed a bit during the take off and landing. The pet boy, Aaron, travelles a lot between Germany and Denamrk and also Slovakia and he is completely ok with it but he is very fixed on his owner.
    I hope this helps you a bit, if you have time ,feel free to check our web page (the english version on the left side of the menu)
    or on FB

    Have a nice day

  13. Hi there,
    I am from Cyprus and I would really love to adopt a ragdoll cat but I can not find a breeder in Cyprus. Do you have any suggestions on how I could adopt a kitten or where to look for one? Do you know anyone who is willing to send me a kitten via animal transport who trustworthy?
    Thank you very much

    1. There are a number of breeders in Eastern Europe that would be able to work with you, I would think. You might ask on the Facebook page. I’ve also reached out to one of them to see if they could ship to you.

      1. Hi, I am looking for reputable breeder in London, could you help me? I really want a lilac bicolour with all white body except face obviously. Thanks!

        1. I learned long ago not to recommend breeders!  So I let readers do it =)

          Here are the pages on the site that you might find helpful:

          How to Know if a Cat Breeder is Reputable: An Interview with Bette Willette

          You might also search for a Ragdoll rescue, so we have the following webpage to help you find a Ragdoll Rescue in your area:

          Good luck! Hope that helps and hope you’ll share your new little one with us on Facebook when you get s/he.


  14. Comment concerning visitors at the cattery. Alot of breeder do not allow visitor to the cattery because of potential disease. They have kittens that may not have had their shots and with animal diseases you can carry on the bottom of your shoes. They probably are allowing in their home because they will bring the kittens that are ready for adoption over (and they are old enough to already have had their shots) I am with you I want to see where my kitty comes from and such however as a former breeder I also want to protect the young ones.

    1. Vicki,

      I wrote this article a while back before I got my kittens from Soulmate Ragdolls and Lora explained all this to me. I have not updated this page and I need to because of this. Good on you for mentioning it – as I get it now. I also understand that breeders operate out of their homes and their homes aren’t petting zoos and a lot of people use them as such. So I fully understand the importance of not allowing visitors – but to see the kittens when they are ready to adopt!

      Thanks again for the comment!

  15. mslittlebear says:

    I will certainly due that. Kittens will be born probably late August, so they may be close to Christmas. If “Leah” didn’t breed on June 26th, she will breed her in July and she would be due around August 28th and my anniversary and birthday are August 19th and August 24th. I am in no rush, so whenever they get here, I’ll have a beautiful kitty. I think I have a name all picked out because I would like a male his name will be “Sir Lancelot of Kings Court.” If it is a girl, it will be, hmm, can’t name a kitty “Gweneviere” cause I can’t even spell it. Have to think on that one.

    I will definitely let you know when I get one.

    1. SO FUN! I love it! I love the “Sir Lancelot of Kings Court” – I am partial to the males – and actually “Guinevere” is how I got my name “Jennifer” – but I think Guinevere is way cooler!! I have a name picked out for my next kitty too – good on you!

      1. Anonymous says:

        I have visited Dawn King’s “cattery”. I would be very interested to hear other people’s experience at this place. When I went, the house reeked of cat urine the moment you walk in the door. The cats were all in cages-supposedly they like being in there but it reminded me of an animal shelter. The room the cats were kept in also contained a few large dogs who were also in cages, and barking very loudly. It was a very stressful environment. Dawn also informed me that she gives her cats Basic H, which is a HOUSEHOLD CLEANER!! Apparently that is her method for making sure the cats don’t get worms. I was appalled. She has beautiful looking cats, but it was not a place I felt comfortable buying a kitten from.

  16. mslittlebear says:

    I will be getting a ragdoll soon and looking for a breeder in my area of Rochester, New York. I contacted one and really wanted to get one because of the colors she had (Love the seal point and blue lynx point). She, however, doesn’t allow visitors and I was put off by that. Any suggestions would help.


    1. Did you ask her why she doesn’t allow visitors? For example, the breeder I bought Charlie and Trigg from didn’t allow visitors to her cattery, but if you had put a deposit down on a certain kitty you were allowed to come by her home and stay in her living room to meet your kitty. A lot of breeders have requests for people to see their cattery – and they never adopt – so they end up entertaining all day. If you can kindly ask her why or even ask her for references, then you might feel better about it. Also, look at the cats on her website – they should all have a clean appearance, etc.

      1. mslittlebear says:

        Thank you for your reply. Her cats looked beautiful. Her reply was time constraints and then if I knew what I wanted she would breed one for me. I didn’t like the idea of not being able to see where the cat came from. I wasn’t about to put down a nonrefundable deposit, what if I didn’t like the cat? Luckily, I have found a breeder I like and will be visiting there on Saturday!

        1. I am so pleased that you have found a breeder that you like and is allowing you to visit – what is the name of the cattery or could you send me a link? I’d be interested in asking them for an interview for the site.

          1. mslittlebear says:

            The name of the cattery is Kingscourt Ragdolls. Here is the link:


            Her name is Dawn King. She has even stated if I did not buy a cat from her she would help me find one. That is a good breeder in my opinion.


          2. I have heard of Dawn King. That is wonderful that she offered to help you find another kitten if you don’t buy a cat from her! Sounds like a winner – please report back and let me know how it went and more importantly, if you adopted a kitty!!

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