Most Popular Cat Breeds – Meet the Top 10 Felines

Last updated: by Jessi Larson

Cats come in various shapes and sizes – and we love them all the same. Some breeds, however, tend to be more popular as pets than others. Here we’ll share the 10 most popular cat breeds according to pet owners.

Perhaps you’re looking for a new cat or simply want to discover the different types of breeds. Whatever the reason, it’s always interesting to learn more about these fascinating animals.

Top 10 Popular Cat Breeds

Ready to meet the most popular cat breeds? Find out the top 10 picks and discover everything you need to know about these furry felines.

1. Exotic Shorthair

Popular cat breeds - Exotic Shorthair

The Exotic Shorthair is a cross between the Persian and American Shorthair cats. They look like the Persian – the same broad face, flat nose and round eyes – but with a short, dense coat.

Quite like the Persian cats, they are very calm and affectionate. However, they tend to be livelier and are known to show more loyalty to their owners.

They don’t always like being left alone, so following their owner around the house is often one of their favorite activities.

The Exotic Shorthair is classified as a brachycephalic breed, meaning their skull is broad and short and gives the appearance of a pushed-in face. This creates an adorable appearance but could also lead to sinus and tear duct issues.

2. Ragdoll

Popular cat breeds - Ragdoll

Another popular breed, the Ragdoll is one of the largest breeds in the world and boasts distinct characteristics that easily set it apart from other cats.

For starters, their eyes are a striking blue color and stand out even more thanks to their colorpoint coat. They are normally born with an all-white fur coat, but garner color accents on their extremities as they grow older.

Known for their dog-like behavior, Ragdolls can usually be taught tricks and are very affectionate. They are extremely mild-mannered and even-tempered cats, giving the Ragdoll a consistent spot among the most popular cat breeds.

Fun fact: The “Ragdoll” name comes from their limp and relaxed behavior when picked up.

3. British Shorthair

Popular cat breeds - British Shorthair

One of the most ancient known cat breeds, the British Shorthair is the number one cat in Great Britain and one of the most beloved breeds in the world today.

With their striking appearance and dignified personality, it’s not hard to tell why.

The British Shorthair is a large, strong-looking cat with a broad face and dense coat. The breed comes in many different colors, but the most familiar variant is the “British Blue” featuring a solid grey-blue coat and orange eyes.

Dignified yet calm and easygoing in nature, the British Shorthair is a favorite among animal trainers for their even-keeled temperament They may not be as playful as other cats, but they are still great with kids and other pets.

Perhaps the most famous British Shorthair in the world is the Cheshire Cat from Alice in Wonderland. Who can forget the grinning appearance of this classic cat?

With all that being said, the British Shorthair definitely deserves their spot among the most popular cat breeds!

4. Persian

Popular cat breeds - Persian

The Persian has consistently topped official popularity rankings for years, and it’s not hard to tell why judging from their appearance and personality.

Believed to have originated in Persia, hence the name, they have a flat face and very thick fur that comes in a variety of colors. Interestingly, most of the time their fur matches their eyes.

The Persian has been a popular choice for crossbreeding with other breeds and has produced many variants, such as the Exotic Shorthair, some of which are now recognized as pure breeds themselves.

These furry creatures are known to be gentle and laidback. They tend to love the security and comfort of being indoors.

The Persian’s beautiful coat makes them an excellent choice for cat fanciers, but in turn, you must groom them regularly to avoid knotting and matting.

5. Maine Coon

Popular cat breeds - Maine Coon

The largest domesticated cat breed, the Maine Coon bears the nickname “gentle giant,” which makes sense considering that male cats can weigh up to 30 pounds.

Along with their large size, the breed stands out for their rugged appearance and thick fur that comes in many colors. And, interestingly, they sometimes come with extra toes, which is perfect for hunting.

Their name “Maine Coon” refers to the state of Maine, whose official state cat is, unsurprisingly, the Maine Coon. It’s one of the oldest natural cat breeds in North America.

Maine Coons, like the Ragdolls, are highly intelligent cats, and are also known to be playful, trainable and dog-like. With their kind and sociable personality, they are great for homes with kids and other pets.

Given their size and warm, furry coat, this breed can withstand the winter better than most cats and make good companions for walks in the snow.

6. American Shorthair

Popular cat breeds - American Shorthair

The American Shorthair was brought from Europe by early settlers and today is one of the oldest recognized breeds. With their adorable round face, short ears and beautiful multicolored fur, it’s not hard to tell why they’re one of the most popular cat breeds.

Unlike some other purebred cats, the American Shorthair is good-natured, low-maintenance and generally healthy, which makes them great for new first-time feline owners.

Remarkably, the American Shorthair is recognized in more than 80 different colors and patterns, ranging from white to black, solid to striped, and everything in between.

7. Scottish Fold

Popular cat breeds - Scottish Fold

As we continue our exploration of the most popular cat breeds, next up is the Scottish Fold, an adorable cat known for its uniquely shaped ears.

The breed is impacted by a gene mutation that affects the cartilage throughout its body. This causes its ears to “fold” down toward the front of the head, giving the breed its signature look.

Good-natured and easy-going, the Scottish Fold adjusts well to other animals in a household and is quite affectionate with its humans. They’re playful and love to engage in activities, so make sure you have lots of cat toys ready for their arrival.

Because of their outgoing nature, the Scottish Fold doesn’t like to be left alone for long and does better when it has company.

8. Sphynx

Sphynx

Hairless and wrinkled, the Sphynx breed comes with an obvious advantage: it doesn’t shed!

The Sphynx were specifically bred for their hairless trait, which is actually a genetic mutation in cats. Their furlessness, however, means that they are more prone to weather and the cold, so it’s best to keep them indoors for the most part.

Interestingly, their skin garners the color that their fur would have, often with spots as well.

These cats love being the center of attention. They are playful and energetic and can be silly from time to time. Having no fur, their skin tends to be warm, and oftentimes, they go around looking for warm places.

9. Abyssinian

Abyssinian

Ethiopian in origin, the Abyssinians were believed to be the sacred cats of pharaohs as their features are similar to the mummified cats of ancient times.

The Abyssinian stands out for its “ticked” coat where individual strands of hair are banded with various colors, ranging from light to dark. Paired with their long and slender legs, these characteristics give them a unique look that is easily recognizable.

These adorable felines are energetic and curious souls. They move around quite a lot and often crave attention, so a lack of activity or interaction can make them depressed.

Extroverted and extremely active, these balls of fur love exploring their surroundings – but would love it even more if their owners explored with them.

10. Devon Rex

Devon Rex

The Devon Rex is known for its almond eyes, wavy hair, large ears and very slender bodies.

Many people have described the Devon Rex breed as “strange and alien-like” based on their looks. This, however, has not stopped these cats from being widely popular.

Quirky, active and slightly mischievous, the Devon Rex is a playful breed that’s been known to jump extremely high and hide away in small spaces. They are also known for their keen intellect.

The Devon Rex breed is known to be a favorite among families, which gives it a consistent place as one of the most popular cat breeds.

Final Thoughts: Most Popular Cat Breeds

There is a reason why these 10 felines make up the most popular cat breeds in the world.

To start, they’re obviously adorable, as you can tell from the photos. They also boast great personalities that make them a welcome addition to any home.

Some of these popular cat breeds have certain advantages over others. For example, the Sphynx doesn’t shed, making it a great choice for people who suffer from allergies.

All in all, anyone would be lucky to own one of these popular pets!

Find a Name for Your Cat

If you decide to welcome one of these popular cat breeds into your home, you’re going to need a name. Fortunately, we have lots of ideas for you to choose from!

Since Find Cat Names launched in 2014, our site has provided thousands of fabulous names for new furbabies and helps over 6 million new cat owners every year. With these stats, we’re confident you’ll find the name for your cat on our site.

To start, try our online name generator. It allows you to sort by your favorite styles and themes to quickly find the perfect name.

You can also search through popular categories:

Try it out and see what you think!

Most Popular Cat Breeds – How to Pick the Right Furry Friend

When you’re looking for a cat but don’t know what breed to get, these eight easy questions can help quickly narrow down your search and find a four-legged friend who perfectly fits your lifestyle.

This guide will help you in choosing one of these popular cat breeds and give you a clearer idea of which one is for you.

1. Why Do You Want a Cat?

First things first, let’s talk about why you want a cat. This will guide you more than you realize!

For example, do you love cuddling up on the couch and want a furball to curl up in your lap and keep you company? Or do you want a low-key companion with an aloof and independent spirit?

Stop for a minute, close your eyes and think about it.

2. What Type of Cat Did You Have Growing up?

Believe it or not, the cat (or cats) you grew up with often have an impact on what type of cat you want when you’re older.

That’s certainly not to say you couldn’t pick a different type of cat by any means. It’s just that people often have a comfort level with the type of feline they were conditioned to growing up.

3. Do You Have Any Allergies?

Cats can be awful for allergies. But fortunately, there are many hypoallergenic cat breeds that make it easier for allergies sufferers.

Always learn more about the breed before bringing it into your home.

4. Who’s in Your Household?

Another important thing to think about is who is in your household.

Is it just you? Or do you have a partner? Roommates? Children?

This is incredibly important to consider. Especially if you have little ones in the house.

5. Where Do You Live?

As you think about which cat breed is right for you, where you live is incredibly important.

Fortunately, cats do well in many different types of living environments. These popular cat breeds are a great fit for any space.

6. How Much Time and Energy Do You Have?

Cats certainly don’t require as much of a time commitment as other pets. (Here’s looking at you, dogs.)

But they still need someone to care for their needs and provide for them.

Potential parents should always make sure they have the time, energy and resources to care for a cat, no matter what the breed. But that level of care can increase depending on the breed.

Before making a decision regarding these popular cat breeds, make sure you understand their instincts and just how much mental and physical stimulation they’ll require.

7. What is the Cat’s Temperament?

Just like appearance, a cat’s temperament can vary greatly by breed. And it’s absolutely critical to find out how a cat will act based on their breed instincts.

Do your homework about a breed’s personality, and also get to know the individual cat before committing.

8. How Much Does the Breed Cost?

Owning a cat isn’t cheap, but some breeds are more expensive than others. Especially for some of the rarer felines.

Cost is a consideration, and it’s always a good idea to understand the full picture before bringing a cat home.

Things to consider include the initial expense, vet bills, food, grooming and supplies.

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