Although most people claim to be human dogs, cats are actually much more popular as pets. With about 88.3 million pet cats in the United States alone, it’s easy to see that they are an integral part of many people’s homes.
While cats are overall very popular, only surpassed as the number one pet by freshwater fish, certain breeds are more popular than others. The personality and appearance of the breed are two factors that make certain cat breeds more popular than others.
Let’s take a look at the 11 most popular cat breeds today.
11 Most Popular Cat Breeds:
1. Domestic Shorthair Cat
|Life expectancy:||12–14 years|
Although Domestic Shorthairs are not an official breed, they are still the most popular breed of cat today. Domestic Shorthairs, which are completely different from American Shorthairs, are the feline version of the mutt. Their origins are mixed and unknown, which is why they are not an official race.
Experts believe that the Domestic Shorthair was domesticated around 2000 BC in Egypt. Since then, the Domestic Shorthair has traveled the world. Today, they are great pets, but they are also known to have avid hunting skills.
As mutts, Domestic Shorthairs come in all shapes and sizes. Most commonly, they are medium in size with a short, soft coat. They can come in any color too.
2. American Shorthair cat
|Life expectancy:||15-20 years|
What distinguishes it from the Domestic Shorthair is the American Shorthair. This breed is very sweet and cuddly, but is also known to be warm, alert, and muscular. Something that people like about this breed is that they tend to be friendly and kind to humans when they are independent.
Since the American Shorthair was bred for work purposes, this cat is very muscular and athletic. They like to chase mice and other small animals, such as birds. If you get an American Shorthair, it’s a good idea to invest in interactive toys to keep them entertained.
As the name suggests, American Shorthairs come with shorter coats, but the color range is much more limited than the Domestic Shorthair.
3. British Short Fur Cat
|Life expectancy:||20 years|
One very old breed is the British Shorthair, and it is as popular today as it was centuries ago. Many people believe that the British Shorthair was brought to England by the Romans around the 1st century. At this point, the cat most likely existed and was bred with British ancestry. After that, the British Shorthair was mated with the Persian, creating the cat we know and love today.
British Shorthairs are one of the most popular breeds, likely because they are one of the most popular cats featured on television, movies, and books. Various forms of entertainment, from Stephen King’s Pet Cemetery to Cheshire Cat and Alice in Wonderlandfeaturing British Shorthairs.
4. Domestic Long Hair Cat
|Life expectancy:||13–17 years|
Domestic Long Hair is comparable to Domestic Short Hair, except they have long hair, as you might have guessed. Just like Domestic Shorthairs, these cats are mutts, meaning they have no known ancestor and they are not a purebred.
It is believed that Domestic Long Hair was bred by people living in Russia, Turkey and Iran. Since then, the breed was most likely brought to America via ships where they were used to control rodent populations.
Since this breed is not a purebred, their long coat can be of any color, from white to black to orange. Due to their long hair, they will likely require regular grooming.
5. Maine Coon Cat
|Life expectancy:||13–14 years|
The Maine Coon is one of the most striking purebred breeds. They have very heavy coats, which allows them to survive the harsh Maine winters. What’s more, they have enormous bodies which make them bigger than the average cat.
Despite their large size, the Maine Coon is a gentle giant. They love to be around their owners and people in general. Another thing that is truly unique about this breed is that their waterproof coat means they love to play in the water.
Because Maine Coons were bred in the wild, they have a very distinct and wild-looking coat. Their coats are very long, and tend to come in many shades of white, brown, gray, and black, allowing them to adapt to their environment.
6. Ragdoll cat
|Life expectancy:||12–15 years|
For people who want the best lap cat, Ragdoll is the place to be. This breed is large and hairy. Even though they are on the bigger side, they get their name from the fact that they are often carried around like Ragdolls.
Often classified as one of the friendliest breeds, Ragdolls like to follow their human companions. They have even been known to greet humans at the door and sleep in bed with them. Ragdolls are also the perfect cat for an apartment as they are not the most active breed.
It wasn’t until the 1960s that the Ragdoll was specially bred. Since then, the breed has had a darker face and darker spots, but the rest of the body tends to be lighter.
7. Persian cat
|Life expectancy:||13.5 years|
Persians are another breed known to be loyal to their owners, although they are often arrogant towards newcomers. This adorable breed has a stocky build and a scrunched face, which makes them absolutely adorable.
Many people like Persians for their gentle and easy-going personality. Although Persians love their owners very much, they are not very demanding on pets and food. This makes them a great breed if you want a cuddly yet laid back cat that can do its own thing.
Interestingly, the Persian cat is actually one of the oldest breeds in recorded history. The first spots of breeding were in Iran, which was called Persia at the time. It wasn’t until 1871 that the breed was introduced to a wider audience. In that year, the cat was displayed inside the Crystal Palace.
8. Siamese cat
|Life expectancy:||12.5 years|
To this day, the Siamese cat is one of the most striking and distinctive breeds. This cat often has a cream colored body with cold, piercing blue eyes. Moreover, this breed has a more pointed body than other cats, including triangular ears and slender paws.
Siamese cats are perfect for active households. Unlike certain cat breeds, Siamese cats need a lot of attention and stimulation. For this reason, they are especially suitable for households with children and other animals.
Another unique thing about Siamese cats is that they are very vocal. They don’t like to be left alone for long periods of time. They will easily communicate their complaints with you and call for attention when they want it.
9. Russian Blue Cat
|Life expectancy:||15-20 years|
Although Russian Blues are not the most friendly of cats to humans, their breed is very popular for their quiet and calm nature. They like to hide in a comfortable place and sleep all day long. Although they tend to hide from newcomers, Russian Blues are known to be loyal to their families.
As the name suggests, the Russian Blue is believed to be descended from a cat that was bred and cared for by the Russian tsar. In the early 1900s, the cats were imported to North America, where they were bred into what we know today.
Now, the Russian Blue has short and soft fur. The color ranges from silver to dark gray. Individual cats may have some faint stripes, but almost all of them are unpatterned.
10. Bengal Cat
|Life expectancy:||12–16 years|
For people who want a pet cat that looks just like in the wild, the Bengal is for you. This cat is very lively and active. Even into older ages, Bengals are known to act like kittens. These cats need a lot of stimulation, or they can cause a lot of damage in your home.
The Bengal differs from the other cats on this list in that they are a hybrid species. They are domesticated and non-domesticated, resulting in a unique appearance, wild personality, and gentle demeanor. This breed appears whenever a domestic cat is bred with an Asian leopard cat.
Today, Bengals have the body of a pet cat but the fur of a stray cat. Its body is muscular and agile, while its fur is striped, very much like the fur of a wild leopard.
|Life expectancy:||15 years|
Lastly, the last cat on our list is the Abyssinian. This cat originally came from Ethiopia which was formerly known as Abyssinia. This cat has a unique fur that has a red-orange color. Cats also have longer ears and conspicuous faces.
Apart from having a unique appearance, the Abyssinians are considered a very friendly race. They are not very well known for jumping into your lap and cuddle, but they love their owners and follow them faithfully.
As America’s second most popular pet, cats are loved by millions. While certain breeds are more popular than others, cats are great furry pets for your home. Whether you’re looking for a cuddle, cuddle, or interactive playmate, you’re sure to find a cat breed that fits your home.
Featured image credit: tsapenkodg, Pixabay