Cats are one of the easiest indoor pets to own, and raising them is a very rewarding experience. However, there’s often a lot of discord between cat and dog lovers as to what the best pet is. This is where Ragdoll cats come into the picture.
A Ragdoll cat is a specially bred indoor cat that provides the best of both worlds. They’ve often been equated to dogs when it comes to docility and loyalty while retaining the patience and calmness of cats.
The Ragdoll cat is a breed of cat that was created in the 1960s by Anne Baker, a breeder based in Riverside California. It is believed that Ann Baker created this breed by mating her domestic longhair Josephine with other roaming cats. Ragdoll cats quickly became a popular pet choice for their unique temperamental traits.
Ragdoll cats are calm and gentle creatures. They’re very playful and develop a strong emotional attachment with their owner.
Leaving a Ragdoll cat alone for too long can make it feel very lonely, and they might approach you with a long look and soft purring whenever they want attention. They seek affection but do it with politeness, unlike dogs who can be quite demanding from time to time.
They love socializing with humans and other cats as much as dogs. They also have an almost dog-like sense of loyalty towards their owners and can be very affectionate. Ragdoll cats are quiet, polite, and loving.
When you take the best parts of owning a dog and put it together with the best parts of owning a cat, you get a Ragdoll cat. The fine emotional tuning of the ragdoll cat has made it one of the highest purchased breeds in America and Europe. Their intelligence sets them apart from a majority of domestic cat breeds.
Ragdoll cats can grow up to a height of 9-11 inches and weigh 10-20 pounds on average.
Ragdoll cats take 4 years to reach full maturity and usually live up to 15 years.
Ragdoll cats have a thick and soft fur that feels like a luxury hotel pillow, and they come in several colors and patterns. Their long hairs make them appear fluffy. Ragdolls are exceptionally smart cats and can be trained to do almost everything the smartest breed of dogs do. They’re also really playful and enjoy a good game of fetch or kibble hockey.
Ragdoll cats come in 4 color patterns, namely, bi-color, van, mitted, and color point. These patterns come in one of the 6 following colors or a combination of a few of them:
The price of a Ragdoll cat varies according to its quality. Here are the 4 levels of quality ranked in terms of cost:
1. Breeder & Show Quality
This is a premium quality, characterized by its unique color, the perfection of features, and zero genetic abnormalities. They’ve been used in advertisements and posters for cat foods. They cost upwards of USD 2,500.
2. Show Quality
This is also a premium cat, made to look good. The cost for these cats generally begins at USD 1,200 but can go as high as USD 2,500.
3. Breeder Quality
Breeder quality Ragdoll cats are healthy and every bit as beautiful. They cost USD 1,500 and up.
4. Pet Quality
Pet quality Ragdoll cats are the same as the other cats in every way; however, they’re unsuitable for showing due to conformation faults. These cost USD 425 and up.
Cost Of Owning One
Compared to most animals such as dogs, reptiles, and birds, owning a Ragdoll cat is not only easier but also low cost. They’re very low maintenance, have fewer grooming needs, and can get used to an apartment lifestyle so you don’t have to walk them regularly. They also don’t require too much effort to look after.
They may be low-cost compared to dogs, but that doesn’t mean they’re cheap. Owning any pet is a costly venture. Your typical annual expenses will include:
#1. Food – USD 50-75 per month.
#2. Vet bills – USD 100-200 for each visit.
#3. Grooming equipment – USD 12-25 per month.
#4. Routine tests to check for ailments – the price varies with the type of test (blood test, parasite test, etc.)
#5. Pet insurance – USD 25-50 per month.
#6. Toys, clothing, bedding, and extras – USD 50-100 per year if you change them annually.
#7. Wrecked furniture – Be prepared for this one. Cats fall into one of two extremes, either they leave your furniture alone or they demolish everything.
Adopt Or Buy?
If you’re planning to show the cat off to your friends or family and socialize it with a lot of people, you might be better off buying it because that would get you breeder quality Ragdoll cats.
Purchasing a cat from an authorized pet retailer also gives you the advantage of a variety to choose from and the quality assurance of a reputed business.
However, there’s nothing wrong with adopting a cat. Adopting tends to get you a pet-quality Ragdoll cat. They’re not inferior to breeder quality cats; those are only bred for looks. Whichever route you go, any cat will be a loving companion.
Common Health Problems
These are some of the most common health problems Ragdoll Cats experience. You need to be aware of these potential ailments, so should they arise, you have the right information on what to do next.
1. Mouth and Gum Disease
Cats need to be given a basic dental care routine; otherwise, food and tartar can build up on their teeth. This leads to all the same conditions it would in a human. Teeth are teeth after all.
2. Respiratory Tract Disorders
Be aware of cat flu. The best way to avoid it is vaccination.
3. Heart Disease
Ragdolls are prone to a particular kind of heart disease called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. It’s a condition that leads to heart failure and has no cure but can be treated with lifelong medication.
4. Gastrointestinal Disorder
Ragdoll cats can develop an infection that poisons or obstructs passages in the gastrointestinal tract, causing vomiting and/or diarrhea.
#1. A Ragdoll’s coat has long hair, so it should be groomed regularly. But because they’re in the habit of keeping clean, it doesn’t need to be washed often.
#2. It’s useful to think of Ragdoll cats as dogs in terms of how much playtime and affection they need. This breed can get really lonely if it’s just left all alone.
#3. Maintain a fixed feeding routine and stick to it.
#4. Ragdoll cats are delicate and sensitive. They should only be handled with gentleness. Be careful when you leave them alone with kids as they might unknowingly scare or hurt the cat.
#5. Find lots of toys for your cat to play with and use its claws on.
Are Ragdoll cats high maintenance?
Ragdoll cats are not a high-maintenance breed. They’re very independent and calm so it’s easier to groom, bathe, or medicate them. They’re also accustomed to indoor living so they don’t need walks. And overall, they give you an easier time compared to most pets.
Are Ragdoll Cats Indoor Cats?
Yes. Ragdoll cats are a sensitive breed, and they’ve specifically been bred to be indoor cats. They’re very trusting and affectionate and have little to no aggression, so they’re not exactly street-savvy. It’s best to keep an eye on your Ragdoll cat and not let it wander out on the streets.
A Few Parting Words
If you want the loyalty, affection, and devotion of a dog but the sensibility and quietness of a cat, Ragdoll cats are the way to go. Unlike puppies, it takes them a while to get used to you and your home environment. But once they do, you’ll have a loving companion for life.