Darwin – Ragdoll of the Week
I grew up surrounded by cats. My parents live on a large 9 acre property and there was always a need for barn cats to keep the mice population in check and as a result we had kittens underfoot every summer.
I was first was introduced to the Ragdoll breed when my parents decided to adopt a mother cat and her kittens. Of the five kittens Bo (my male Ragdoll) was the only one that was obviously different. While the other 4 kittens appeared to of the long hair domestic breed Bo was all white with seal points and had striking blue eyes. Female cats can sometimes be impregnated by multiple male cats which is what we assumed had happened to Bo’s mother, but we always wondered what breed his father was. It wasn’t until we saw Animal Planet’s CATS101 that we realized which breed Bo most closely resembled. And boy did he fit the bill. He was very affectionate, of course the coloring was the same, and he was like liquid to hold. Bo was obviously not a purebred Ragdoll but I was hooked.
I adopted my first cat Gambit (a Ragamuffin rescue) when I was a senior in college and a year and a half later after moving in with my girlfriend we decided to purchase Darwin from a breeder in Wisconson. Darwin is now two and a half years old and is a seal point male weighing in at only 8 lbs. We joke that holding him is like picking up a cloud. We have had him since he was 8 weeks old and my girlfriend decided to name him Darwin so that we could say that he is more “evolved” but that has been the biggest irony in our house for the past two and a half years. Let’s just say it’s a good thing he’s pretty because there are times that we wonder what is going on behind those beautiful blue eyes.
After we brought Darwin home introducing him to Gambit was highly amusing. Gambit who had become accustomed to running the household wanted nothing to do with the small white ball of fur that we had brought into his home and pouted for a long time (we still aren’t sure he’s forgiven us yet.) Darwin on the other hand was thrilled to have a live in play mate to endlessly annoy and that relationship dynamic has continued to this day! They can be found sleeping together and cleaning each other but if Darwin gets too hyper Gambit loudly lets him know of his disapproval.
Aside from pestering Gambit, Darwin’s hobbies include following me from room to room and fussing if it’s been too long since he has been picked up. Playing in boxes is of course a favorite but with the odd quick of bitting and ripping up the boxes he like to lay in. He also likes to play with this toy that has feathers attached to a string on a stick that we got for them, racing up and down his cat tree, and rolling around in catnip that we put on their lounge scratcher.
Perhaps my favorite thing about Darwin however, is every morning when my alarm goes off three seconds later there is a soft “kerflump” on the blanket, a chirp, and darwin appears on my chest for some morning cuddles before the day starts. Once i’m out of bed he tries to herd me into the kitchen to feed him by chirping and walking partway out of the room and then turning around to make sure I’m following him and if I don’t right away I have a permanent shadow lecturing me.
Darwin is an endless source of entertainment and we will mostly likely be a Ragdoll run home for the rest of the foreseeable future.
You are so blessed to have not only Gambit who is drop dead gorgeous, but also Darwin who looks like a royal King of the Ragdolls. They are so beautiful and make such a wonderful pair. Love that photo from above where they are lying together all curled around each other. Well, I love all the photos you took of them. Thank you for sharing their wonderful story and hope they have a long and happy life with you.
BTW, I forgot to ask – what ways does the Ragamuffin differ from the Ragdoll, i.e., temperament, weight, character traits, etc. Thanks!
Hi Teresa 🙂 Thank you so much! I love them to death and I’m pretty sure they both have a complex by now because I tell them how pretty they are on a daily basis lol. And Darwin may look like a royal king but he acts more like the Jester ;p
A Ragamuffin is actually a mix between a Ragdoll and a Domestic long hair to introduce a little genetic diversity. Temperament wise they are very similar, they are eaqually as friendly and people oriented and they can retain some of the Ragdoll Floppy-ness. They tend to be a little more “plush” for lack of a better way to describe it. Darwin is increadibly soft and fluffy but Gambit is silky soft like a bunny rabbit. I LOVE to just sit and pet him because he is soooo soft. There is a Cats 101 video on Animal Planet that features the Ragamuffin as well if you would like to go check it out 🙂
Jamie, I just love Darwin, could you please pm me the breeder of this boy? So many gorgeous cats but he really caught my eye.
As far as I know, the only real difference is in the acceptable coloration for the breeds. They both come from the same original breed but ragdolls were selected more strictly, not allowing for greater phenotypic variability.
omgosh i love that photo on the sink… the last one where you can see those long toe tufts!! and that sweet face. so cute! what a gorgeous cat. is that black and white “gambit”? that looks like a cat that i know and love. thanks for sharing your story about your wonderful kitties!
Hi Patricia, yes the black and white one is Gambit (I’m a bit of a comic book nerd so he is named after an X-men Character lol)
Thanks! I’m glad you enjoyed the story 🙂
Awwwww….Great story! Thank you so much for sharing! 🙂
Gambit AND Darwin are simply GORGEOUS! I lurve the markings and coloring of Darwin! Those dark front socks (look like velvet gloves!) are SO PRETTY!!!!
I love that Darwin does that adorable chirp/chortle thingy that so many Ragdolls do…. That sound melts my heart every time. Every. Single. Time. I love how he jumps up for cuddles after your alarm goes off and then herds you into the kitchen for his breakfast! lol 🙂
Patti & Pink Sugar 🙂 <3
Darwin and his buddy Gambit are both gorgeous 🙂 Lucky them… lucky you!!! Thank you for sharing the great pictures and sweet story!
Wow- what a beauty! I drooling over the pictures of Darwin and Gambit sleeping together- I’d love to see that harmony in my house, where an armed truce exists. Those blues eyes in Darwin’s dark face are to die for. Thanks so much for sharing!