Ragdoll cats and Ragamuffin cats are commonly confused—in fact, some sites like PetMD use the names interchangeably. But according to the Cat Fancier’s Association, Ragdolls and Ragamuffins are two unique breeds with a few key differences in appearance.
If you’ve been unaware of the difference between Ragdolls and Ragamuffins, the good news is that they both make great pets. Both breeds are large, docile cats with very sweet personalities. However, if you want to know a little bit more about how to compare Ragdoll and Ragamuffin cats, here is a little clarification:
History of the Breeds
There is some controversy and confusion surrounding the origin and development of Ragdolls, and it is possible that this is what has led to the distinction between Ragdolls and Ragamuffins domestic cats. The Ragdoll breed was originally started in California by a breeder named Ann Baker, who started the line with her cat Josephine, a longhaired Persian/Angora. Josephine’s sweet disposition and tendency to limp in the arms of someone holding her is where the Ragdoll cats get their name and reputation.
What's a ragamuffin?
Less is known about the exact origins of the Ragamuffin cat, because after Ann Baker began to breed Ragdolls, other breeders also began developing the breed. Baker created her own registry for Ragdolls in 1971, The International Ragdoll Cat Association (IRCA), but many breeders were displeased with the fact that they would have to pay licensing fees, so they split off and formed their own Ragdoll Society in 1975. Because there wasn’t one common standard for the large cat Ragdoll breed, other related breeds began to spring up—for example, the Ragamuffin.
Ragdoll and Ragamuffin cat are both fairly large, often weighing around 15 lbs. Both breeds are also known for their big, lovely eyes, but there are some differences: Pure Ragdolls are known for their vivid blue eyes, which are oval-shaped.
On the other hand, Ragamuffins can have any color eyes, and the shape is much more rounded, similar to a walnut.
Coats are also a point of distinction between the two cats. Ragamuffin coloration is much more wide and varied and includes a lot of white, but does not include pointed colors.
Ragdoll cat colors are exclusively pointed, which means that their faces, tails, legs, and ears are a darker color than the rest of their body. However, Ragdolls can still have white “boots” or “gloves” on their paws. Both breeds both have the same medium-long coat with a plumed tail, but Ragamuffin coats are more resistant to matting.
Ragdoll vs. Ragamuffin Temperament
Both breeds are known for being remarkably sweet and docile, so if you are looking to adopt either as a pet, you can’t go wrong. The Cat Fancier’s Association has said Ragamuffins in particular make a great pet for households with children, as Ragamuffins are exceptionally patient and placid.
Since both breeds are so laid back, it is important to play with them often to keep them fit and active. Fortunately, they are very affectionate with their owners, and will often follow them around or greet them at the door, so they should be very happy for playtime!
For more detailed information on the characteristics of each breed, check out the Cat Fancier’s Association Ragamuffin Breed Standards and Breed Profile, as well as the Ragdoll Breed Standards and Breed Profile. You can also read up more on Ragdolls specifically in our post “Ragdoll Cat Breeds”. If you’re looking for Ragdoll and Ragamuffin kittens for sale, start by contacting local breeders or rescue organizations to ask some questions about what breeds they have available.
What are your experiences with Ragamuffin vs. Ragdoll cats? What Ragamuffin cat facts do you know? Ragdoll cat facts?