If you are ready to welcome a new family member into your home, it's important to do research ahead of time to figure out whether your prospective new furry friend will be a good fit for you and your family.
Here at Floppycats, we know a lot about Ragdolls, not only from doing extensive research on them, but also from our personal experiences of owning them and loving them in our own homes.
Ragdoll cats are incredibly popular kitties that steal the hearts of many, but not every cat is the perfect fit for every human. Today we're going to walk through some of the questions you should ask yourself if you're considering adopting a Ragdoll cat.
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These questions can get you to figure out what factors might alter your decision, and can act as a bit of a discussion guide for whoever else might be alongside you as you adopt your potential kitten. Before we walk through those significant factors, we want to walk through a bit of history on the breed:
A Short History of Ragdoll Cats
The Ragdoll cat breed began with a cat named Josephine, a non-pedigreed, white, long-haired Persian/Angora cat, who was bred with several Birman or Burmese-esque cats. The litters they produced included a large breed of docile, affectionate cats with the famous Ragdoll trait of going limp when picked up. Baker continued to breed the line for cats with these characteristics, selecting for traits like the tendency to relax when picked up, pointed coloration, large size, and the sweet Ragdoll cat personality.
Today, Ragdolls are marketed by Ragdoll cat breeders as being particularly family-friendly, calm cats, with striking blue eyes, and Ragdoll cat patterns include pointed, mitted, bi-color, high-mitted bi-color and lynx. (You can read more about their colors and patterns on our previous post.) As a beautiful and sweet breed, these kitties make great pets and are a delight to so many cat lovers.
The Ragdoll is one of the most popular cat breeds in the world due to its amazing personality. They are known to be "gentle giants," which make them wonderful family pets for someone who is looking for that sort of temperament.
**Please know that after having this website for 14 years, I have learned the importance of stressing that BREED STEREOTYPES for any breed of cat can be deceiving. DO NOT EXPECT that if you adopt a Ragdoll kitten that it will fit the breed description. Every cat is a living soul, which means they will have a different personality and may or may not possess some or all of the qualities of the breed.
All that being said, it's time to move on to how to decide if this specially-bred type of cat is for you. There are many different aspects of how you might decide on whether Ragdoll cats are for you, from their appearance to their personality to common concerns people might have about them, and we have all the detailed answers to questions you might have about Ragdolls.
So, without further ado, here are some questions you should ask yourself when you're considering adopting a Ragdoll cat.
What Appearance Are You Looking For?
As mentioned above, Ragdolls' name comes from this cat breed's tendency to go limp and relaxed when picked up. This is one of the best-known features of this type of cat.
Ann Baker has trademarked the breed name "Ragdoll" and she set up her own breed registry, the International Ragdoll Cat Association (IRCA). She urged breeders to meet very specific standards in order to qualify, so there is a certain amount of consistency among Ragdolls. These are the main physical features of the Ragdoll cat breed:
- Large cat breed - Comparable to the Norwegian Forest Cat, the Maine Coon, the Egyptian Mau, or the American Bobtail, Ragdoll cats are truly large. Males go up to 20 pounds, while females may vary from 10 to 15 pounds. This makes it one of the largest cat breeds in the world.
- Blue eyes - Ragdoll cats are known for their big blue eyes, which are absolutely stunning!
- Semi-long-haired cat - Ragdolls have a soft semi-long, plush coat, which makes them easier to groom than other long-haired cats. They do not have an undercoat, which is very important because this is where the excessive shedding usually comes from in other cat breeds.
- Endurance - The life span of Ragdoll cats averages around 15 years. Each individual's life span varies according to genetic facts, medical issues developed throughout the years, quality of nutrition and care, living conditions, etc.
As you can see, these factors make Ragdolls very beautiful, royal-like cats that are highly sought after. However, many people simply see these features and don't do further research.
After all, cats are living, breathing souls, and no matter how beautiful they are, there is more to them than just their looks. Make sure that you take all the other factors into consideration.
What Personality Are You Looking For?
Once again, every Ragdoll cat is different, so if your cat doesn't match this exact description, don't fret! It's very important to get to know the kitty you're considering adopting, and making your decision based on their individual personality.
That being said, these are some of the main features Ragdoll cats are bred for, and generally adhere to:
- Ragdolls are extremely sociable with humans - both their masters and other people.
- Ragdolls are very close to their masters, but they are not pushy.
- Ragdolls show their love through constant proximity to their masters.
- Ragdolls are very playful cats with a lot of love to give.
These characteristics make these cats fit for almost any type of home. They are best suited for owners who are looking for a relaxed cat with which they can develop a close relationship.
They may not be a good fit for someone who wants a bold, energetic, independent cat. Although we love Ragdolls, their usual personality isn't for everybody, and it can sometimes be interpreted as clingy.
Do You Want an Indoor or Outdoor Cat?
One of the big things about Ragdoll cats is that they are bred to be indoor-only cats. In fact, many Ragdoll breeders make adopters sign contracts saying they won’t let their cats outside.
The most common reason people give as to why this popular breed should not go outside is because of their docile and too trusting nature – that they wouldn’t know how to defend themselves against predators.
As with many decisions, the decision to let your Ragdoll outside is a subjective one, but it would definitely have to be an intentional effort to let them outside without losing them. If you're dead-set on having an outdoor cat, Ragdoll cats might not be for you. More great information on the topic here, Can Ragdolls cats go outside?
Do You Have Other Pets?
If you have other cats, you might be asking yourself how it will work out to bring your new cat into your family. Introducing a new cat in the household is a complex process in itself, but with Ragdolls, it should be at least a little bit easier because they are docile and sociable. If introduced properly, Raggies should get along well with other cats.
If you have a dog, that can be worked out as well. Ragdolls are actually some of the few cat breeds that get along with cat-friendly dogs. It is highly recommended that at least one of the animals be of younger age, that they are introduced gradually and kept under constant surveillance, at least at first, but getting a Raggie to befriend a dog is certainly possible.
Do You Have Children?
When you are looking into whether a pet would be a good addition to your family, it is very important to check whether the breed you're seeking out is friendly to children.
Ragdoll cats are some of the best felines for families with children because of their floppy, laid-back personalities. These cats are often patient enough to interact with children and are not known to become violent with them. However, each kitty is a living, breathing soul with its own personality, and no article can definitively say how a Ragdoll kitty you bring home will perform in your home.
Are You Okay With the Process of Adopting a Ragdoll Cat?
If you are looking for a Ragdoll cat, it is probably best to buy either a rescue Ragdoll (a Ragdoll that has been abandoned or needs to be adopted because a family is moving out of the country, or various other reasons), or a retired breeder (these purebred cats range in age from 3 to 8 years old and they are cats that breeders have used to breed.) However, you can also get Ragdoll cats from breeders.
There are a lot of different levels of Ragdoll cats:
- Pet (Alter) Quality
- Show (Alter) Quality
- Breeder Quality
- Show/Breeder Quality
The level of cat is directly correlated to the different price rungs available from a reputable breeder. Depending on what level you're looking for, the prices of purebred Ragdoll cats from breeders can range from $1200-$5000+.
When you are looking into adopting any pet, it's very important to remember that the price of adopting the pet isn't the only cost involved. You need to save up money for not only the cat itself, but food, toys, care supplies, vet bills, money to repair any household damage that may occur, and more.
Of course, Ragdoll owners know the cost is worth it to them, but it's important to evaluate whether you can afford those costs, and whether a Ragdoll is worth the extra money for you and your household.
Do Ragdoll Cats Make Good Pets?
In summary, Ragdoll cats are a large, beautiful breed of cat with a specific look, often including blue eyes, silky fur, and little shedding compared to other cats. Many cat lovers find them to be a very endearing breed.
They have an affectionate nature and are playful, sociable, and are usually very close to their masters, but that can sometimes be read as clingy by owners who wanted a more independent cat breed. They are likely to get along with children and other pets if they are introduced properly since they tend to have happy temperaments.
These beautiful cats are not the best pets for people who are looking for outdoor cats. While they are an amazing breed, they are bred to be indoor cats, and letting them outside is not a good idea.
This popular cat breed is definitely a more expensive option than other cats, with prices ranging from $1200-$5000+, depending on the level of Ragdoll cat you want to adopt. And, of course, these numbers aren't the full picture, in the context of your pet's unique medical needs, food, toys, and home costs.
In our biased opinion, Ragdoll cats make great pets! However, you need to evaluate whether this breed is a good fit for your family's lifestyle. Hopefully this post has given you some meaningful criteria to decide whether to adopt a Ragdoll cat.