Ragdolls are some of the most beloved cat breeds in the entire world due to their fascinating looks, but most importantly, due to their unique personality. They are considered to be the most docile cat breed out there. In fact, this has been taken to the level of a stereotype, and more and more people buy Ragdoll cats, convinced that they will get what The International Cat Association describes this breed to be.
However, every single cat is unique. While it is true that the Ragdoll cat breed displays an array of common characteristics, personality traits depend on a wide variety of factors. The result is strictly personalized to the individual. It may lead to more or less significant differences from the breed staple. Therefore, when purchasing a Ragdoll cat or any other cat breed, people must know that their information on the breed’s personality traits is meant only as a guideline.
Unlike physical characteristics, there can be no assurance that the cat they have gotten, even with the best pedigrees from the Ragdoll Fancier Cat Association or other institutions, will present the breed’s personality characteristics precisely as described. Mind you, some characteristics will be present to a certain extent, while others will only be scarcely there.
This article covers the main traits of the Ragdoll cat personality. First, we are going to relay the breed standard. Then, we will compare it to the personal experiences of actual Ragdoll cat owners who frequent this website’s social media accounts. Many of our Floppycats fans have been kind enough to tell us about the personality of their own Raggies, and we have summarized their testimonials to compare them to the standard characteristics.
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Ragdoll Cat Breed – Main Personality Traits
Developed by Ann Baker in the ’60s, the Ragdoll has become one of the most appreciated cat breeds in the world because it has all the characteristics that people want in a cat. In the following section of this article, you can find the main personality traits of this fantastic breed:
The Ragdoll Effect
Ragdoll cats will be completely relaxed when they are picked up. They will lie limp, like dolls, part of how this breed has gotten its name. This is the staple behavior for the Ragdoll cat breed and is the specific trait that everybody expects to notice when getting a Ragdoll cat. As mentioned above, whether or not this will be present depends entirely on the individual.
Ragdolls Love Humans
The most striking characteristic of Ragdoll cats is their affinity towards humans. They are very fond of their masters but also highly interested in socializing with others. This may mean house guests, but it also includes other strangers. In fact, their curiosity towards people is so intense that many cases were reported where Ragdoll cats that were outside were stolen because they did not protest being taken away by somebody other than their masters.
Ragdolls Are Personal Bodyguards
It’s more than their blue eyes that makes the Ragdoll one of the most popular cat breeds in the entire world. These cats will build a solid bond with their masters; one way they will show it is proximity. This means they follow their masters wherever they go around the house, including the bathroom. However, they are never pushy, unlike other affectionate cat breeds such as the Siamese, Scottish Fold, and Birman.
Ragdolls are known to be excellent companions. They will spend hours on end next to their masters but rarely bother them with anything.
Ragdolls Are Puppy-Dog Cats
The personality of Ragdoll cats has often been compared to that of dogs, and for good reason. One of the dog-like behavior traits that lots of Raggies display is their playfulness. The similarity becomes quite apparent when Ragdolls play fetch, which many enjoy. Moreover, Ragdolls have been observed to be easily socialized with dogs, which is quite a rare trait among cats.
Raggies Are Incredibly Relaxed and Brilliantly Floppy
Another famous trait displayed by this breed is a very even disposition. While other domestic longhairs may be more adventurous and have a more tumultuous personality, Ragdolls are usually laid back and relaxed. This also contributes to the story of their name because many Ragdoll owners feel that they have these living dolls around the house. It also makes Ragdoll kittens some of the most adorable juniors out there.
Ragdolls Are Not Big Climbers
While most domesticated cats love to climb on furniture, shelves, trees, and anything around, Ragdoll cats usually choose to stay at ground level. On particularly adventurous days, they will get to sofa level because this is about as far as their interest in heights goes. This also adds to their docile personas, which has made them so popular because, with Raggies, there are no sudden movements, jumps, or falls.
Ideal Owners for Ragdoll Cats
Based on their personality, Ragdoll cats are a fantastic match for people who want a relaxed cat and a close companion. Their extremely docile personality and impressive patience make them an excellent fit for families with children. Ragdolls will not protest when interacting with the little ones, which any cat owner knows can be rather complicated. Children are often too eager when playing with cats, and some cats do not tolerate such behavior, which could prove dangerous. But with Ragdolls, this is different.
This cat breed is ideal for busy households because they have independent personalities and do not require constant attention or a long play schedule. They enjoy lounging on the couch or a cat bed, which is the perfect way to spend the day while the family is away.
Ragdolls are also a fantastic choice for families with dogs. It is the best breed to have if you want to maintain a good relationship between a cat and dog within the same household. This fantastic trait sets this breed apart from other crowd-favorites such as British Shorthairs, American Shorthairs, or the Manx calico cats.
The Ragdoll Myth
What we have described in the section above represents the outline of the Ragdoll cat personality. This information has been corroborated by Ragdoll cat owners, thus generating a frenzy among cat fanciers. This breed’s seductive good looks, the heartwarming story around its docile behavior, and the critical comparison to a ragdoll made it a legend.
While this has brought many advantages for the development of Ragdolls, it has also led to some unfortunate situations. Countless families have purchased the classic bicolor Ragdoll, expecting an actual living doll in the house. But Ragdolls are not toys, and more than having a litter box, cat food, and a water bowl is undoubtedly needed to ensure proper pet care for this breed.
When they found out that docile had a limit and cats come with a wide range of needs, many of these families fascinated with the Ragdoll stereotype decided to rehouse their cats or abandon them. Resorting to such methods is extremely unfortunate, so people have to know that there is so much more to Ragdolls than the myth created around this breed.
Most individuals will display our listed characteristics, but these will be present in specific proportions. While some Ragdolls are floppy and docile, they are rather vocal or not particularly affectionate. Others are affectionate, but they keep their meowing to a minimum or endless combinations of the possible traits.
When getting a Ragdoll cat, even from a reputable breeder, there is no guarantee that the cat will live up to the myth. Furthermore, we strongly advise people looking to get cats to do extensive research before making this step. Aside from having long silky fur, blue eyes, and a wonderful personality, Ragdolls are a significant long-term responsibility, and only those who are ready for it should make the step.
The Development of the Cat’s Personality
As we have mentioned above, a cat’s personality, regardless of its breed and the described standards, depends entirely on the individual. Similar to the development of children, the experiences cats have during the first months of life have an enormous impact on the character traits they will develop as adults. Some of the factors that significantly impact cat psychology are as follows:
- The kitten’s state of health
- The relationship between the kitten and its mother
- The relationship between the kitten and its siblings
- The relationship between the kitten and its master(s)
- The environment that the kitten grows up in
The last two of the five factors mentioned above will influence the cat’s personality the most. With Ragdolls, the relationship with the master(s) is even more critical than it is for other breeds due to their attachment to humans. How the masters welcome the kitten, the amount of time they spend with it if they talk to it and engage in a meaningful connection, and most of all, the amount of affection they show will build the character of the adult cat.
However, it does depend entirely on the masters to offer the kitten a good start. Certain traumatic events can influence the kitten’s progress, such as when it is separated from its mother and siblings or any diseases it may suffer from in this period. Then, how the cat reacts to these events, changes, and processes will shape its personality as an adult. This is where individuality comes in and makes the individual unique.
Ragdoll Cat Personality – Our Readers’ Stories
Up to this point, we have pointed out how the personality patterns of the Ragdoll breed make these cats some of the most popular in the world. The traits described in the breed characteristics should be interpreted as an outline of what the individual will be like. As such, when getting a Ragdoll cat, there are certain personality traits that you can expect it to have, but these are not guaranteed to be present.
To see how similar or different Ragdoll cats can be to the breed standard, I asked our readers to tell us about their cats’ personalities. Many of them answered us and told us about their Ragdoll cats. Here are some of the ideas we gathered:
- Almost all the Raggies we were told about are close to their masters. They follow them around the house, and they maintain their proximity, but they are not insistent.
- Very few enjoy sitting on their master’s lap or being petted on their bellies. There were also quite a few cuddlers.
- Many Raggies are cuddly with their masters at night but are pretty independent by day.
- Quite a few prefer to sleep with their masters, next to their heads, between their legs, or just close to them.
- A lot of the Raggies are independent, playful, and quite active. They can entertain themselves by playing around the house.
- Most are not very vocal and meow only to ask for food or demand attention.
A vital aspect we’ve noticed about the Ragdoll cats in our readers’ comments is the impressive diversity between individuals of the same breed. Each of these cats had its very own pattern in terms of personality. But the most important thing we’ve noticed is the great affection with which our readers described their cats.
Each and every comment was filled with immense warmth. This shows that no matter how active, talkative, floppy, or clingy your Ragdoll cat may be, you will inevitably fall in love with it!
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,