Ragdoll cats are known worldwide for three things – their amazingly friendly personalities, their lavishly good looks, and their remarkably large size. In fact, Ragdolls are among the largest cat breeds out there. But how big is a large cat? Which cat breeds are larger and smaller than Raggies? This article is all about the size of Ragdoll cats and comparing them to some of the best-known cat breeds.
Ragdoll Cat Size Explained
Ragdoll cats are some of the largest domesticated cats in the entire world. According to the breed characteristics from the RFCI (Ragdoll Fanciers Club International), adult Ragdoll males weigh between 12 and 21 pounds. There is a significant difference between sexes, as an adult Ragdoll female weighs between 8 and 15 pounds. The size of Ragdoll cats does not differ according to color or pattern.
Please note that this is the range of variation for Ragdoll cats of normal weight and standard size. Ragdolls are not only large in size, but they also have sturdy bodies and strong skeletal systems. They are muscular cats, especially if exercised properly, which also adds to their overall weight. The Ragdoll coat, however, is extremely light.
Ragdoll Kitten Development
Since Ragdoll adults can reach such impressive proportions, the development of the kittens is quite remarkable because the growth sprees are enormous. Only by the age of 1 month, they can reach between 0.8 and 1.7 lbs and it doesn’t stop there.
In fact, it keeps getting more and more dramatic. By the age of 2 months, Ragdoll kittens are expected to reach between 1.8 and 3.0 lbs. In just one month, they can double their body weight. Then, by 3 months, they should reach between 3.1 and 4.0 lbs and by the age of 4 months, 4.1 to 5.0.
Progressively, by the age of 5 months, they should reach 5.1 to 6.0 lbs. Then, at the age of 6 months, when they enter adulthood, both males and females should have more than 6.0 lbs. As mentioned above, there is a significant size difference between males and females. Adult male Ragdolls will grow up to be much larger than the females.
**Please note – averages are exactly that – averages…there are cats that fall below and above the averages too.
Factors that Could Influence Size and Weight
The size variation of Ragdoll cats that we have described above is only valid for healthy cats which receive a proper diet in the correct amount. Please note that overweight cats and those suffering from various illnesses may stray from these size ranges. In fact, here are only some of the factors that can influence the size and weight of a Ragdoll cat:
Colostrum is the first type of milk produced by the mammary glands, immediately after the kittens are delivered. This milk is very rich in nutrients, but it also has a massive impact on the immunological system of the kittens. Colostrum delivers antibodies from the mother to the kittens, which is why it is crucial that they get an adequate amount after birth.
If the litter is too large or if the kittens are taken away from their mother too early, they may not get enough colostrum. If this is not compensated artificially, then the kittens’ development process could be affected. They can either get infectious diseases or they can develop nutrient deficiencies, which will lead to improper development.
Correct Nutrient Intake
Ragdolls have a dramatic growth spree, which needs to be supported by the correct intake of nutrients. This means that they have to eat the right food in the right quantities to have the basis for their development.
A veterinarian can recommend the best diet plans for the Ragdoll kitten, including approved and forbidden food and professional diet options. Moreover, the vet will monitor the cat and set the correct food amount for the daily diet according to the kitten’s weight.
Aside from a correct diet, Ragdoll cats can benefit from special nutrient supplements to sustain their growth spree. For instance, they need support for their bones and joints (Calcium, Magnesium, and minerals for the bones and glucosamine and chondroitin for the joints). Since they grow so much in such a short amount of time, the nutrients they can absorb from food are usually not enough. A veterinarian will determine the best possible supplement options for the kitten.
Ragdoll kittens need a lot of exercise and it is very important for their development that they actually get it. Taking the time to play with them can truly make a difference because when kittens are active, their growth is also stimulated. So, play fetch with your Raggie every day to keep it healthy. They also require enough space to run and to play, which is something to consider before getting a large cat.
When kittens get sick, their bodies have to channel a lot of resources to fight disease.
Moreover, the symptoms of a lot of common diseases that kittens can get include weight loss. Even if the disease is treated and the kitten recovers, some illnesses can have long-term consequences on their development.
The King-Sized Cat Expectation
People know Ragdolls to be among the largest cat breeds in the world, which also makes Raggies very popular among those who want to have a very large cat as a pet.
While this has driven many people to buy their own Ragdoll, it has also built up a myth surrounding their size.
When people get a Ragdoll cat with a pedigree from the CFA (Cat Fanciers Association), they expect to get a cat of significant proportions because they’ve seen countless pictures and videos of these gentle giants. While in most cases, Raggies do live up to these sizable expectations, there is a chance that they will be somewhat smaller than predicted.
Regrettably, this is enough for some people to give their cats away or even abandon them because they are not the appropriate size. This also happens when some Ragdoll owners notice that their cats don’t have the standard Ragdoll cat personality they envisioned for their pet.
To avoid unfortunate situations like these, people should keep in mind that breed profiles are not commitments and that they are subjected to natural variations. Every individual is unique and even with the strongest of gene pools, it may exhibit only some of the breed characteristics and only to a certain amount.
Not even the best Ragdoll cat breeders can determine the exact outcome of the litter. Even with DNA testing, they can make certain predictions about the adults, but there are no absolute certainties when it comes to cats because nature has the last word every single time.
Size Matters – Here’s Why
As we have established above, Ragdoll cats are definitely some of the largest cats in the world. While this is certainly something you can be proud of, it also means that there is more of them to love, literally. When you decide to get a large cat, there are a few things you need to be aware of:
Hold Them Correctly – To offer proper support when you pick up your Ragdoll cat, you have to use both hands and make sure you sustain them proportionally. You can take a look at my video on how to pick up Ragdoll cats to find out about the best ways to do this.
Get Them Proper-Sized Accessories – From cat beds to scratching posts and litter boxes, make sure you double-check the size before you buy accessories for your cat because these could actually be unfitting of the gentle giants. You should know that even the ones listed as Large or Extra-Large may not be enough. Our Floppycats Shop has a listing of products that are Ragdoll cat size appropriate.
Larger Cat, Bigger Costs – Another aspect that people do not take into consideration before getting a large-sized cat is that the cat care costs are somewhat higher. For instance, a Russian Blue or an American Shorthair will eat less than a Ragdoll cat because they are significantly smaller. While this may not seem like much, the costs of being a responsible cat owner are extremely important.
Ragdolls Vs. the Word’s Largest Cats
Everybody knows that Ragdolls are among the largest domesticated cats in the world. But this begs the question – which cats are larger than the Ragdoll and just how much larger are they?
Here are the Ragdoll’s main competitors in terms of size:
Savannah – With adult males reaching up to 25 lbs, the Savannah cat is closer to wild felines than to domestic cats. They look like household cheetahs and they make for very exotic pets. Savannahs are noticeably larger than Ragdolls.
Chausie – A less well-known large feline, the Chausie cat is on the tall side, and willowy – more like a basketball player or marathon runner. Adult males can weigh between 11-16 lbs, and females run 8-13 lbs.
Maine Coon – Very few cats are larger than the Maine Coon and the Ragdoll is not one of them. Weighing up to 20 lbs, Maine Coon adult males are certainly longer than Ragdoll males because this breed has an enormous tail which can get as long as 14 in. The holder of the world record for the longest domestic cat is a Main Coon named Mymains Stewart Gilligan. Stewie measured a whopping 48.5 inches.
Norwegian Forest Cat – Another well-known giant among cats, the Norwegian Forest cat is certainly something to see. Adult males typically weigh up to 17 lbs, but like Maine Coons, they have very long tails that add to their size.
Siberian – Also smaller than the Ragdoll, the adult Siberian cat male reaches 17 lbs.
Turkish Van – While the adult males only get to 16 lbs, Turkish Vans are among the world largest cat breeds.
Burmese – Adult Burmese females weigh between 8 and 12 lbs, while the males exceed 12 lbs. It’s no match for the Ragdoll, but the Burmese is still quite the large cat.
Egyptian Mau – Similar in size to the Burmese cat, the Egyptian Mau also reaches 12 lbs, placing it on the large cat list.
Ragdolls vs. the World’s Smallest Cats
Now that you’ve seen the Ragdoll’s main contenders in terms of size, it may be interesting to see just how much bigger this cat breed is compared to other breeds you may have heard about. Here are the world’s smallest cats!
Singapura – With adult males weighing between 4 and 8 lbs, the Singapura is the world’s smallest cat breed. Another defining characteristic for this breed is the fact that adults maintain the appearance of kittens for life, making these a treat for any cat lover out there.
Munchkin – Known world-wide for their adorably short legs, Munchkins weigh between 5 to 9 pounds at adulthood. These critters are also extremely active and a delight to be around.
Cornish Rex – This cat breed is known all around the world for its curly fur, but it is also remarkably petite. In spite of the fact Cornish Rex cats have long legs and long ears, adult males only get to weigh between 6 and 10 pounds.
Devon Rex – Closely related to the Cornish Rex, the Devon Rex is bound to make an impression with its large ears, long curled eyes, and short rex rabbit-like coat. However, in terms of size, it is very small. Adult males weigh between 5 and 10 pounds.
American Curl – This breed’s most popular characteristic is the uniquely curled ears. While American Curls have a very imposing posture, they only weigh between 5 to 10 pounds.
Scottish Fold – Everybody knows Scottish Folds for their short and folded ears, but these cats are also extremely small. Adult males weigh between 9 and 13 lbs. What they may lack in size, Scottish Folds compensate in playfulness.
As you can see, Ragdolls are among the largest cat breeds in the world by comparison. However, keep in mind that size variation includes a lower limit as well. While Ragdoll males can get up to 20 lbs, they can also be as small as 12 lbs. Please note that this is actually within the breed profile.