Harper Jefcoat
Harper Jefcoat

Ragdoll Cat - Complete Profile, History & Traits

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11 min read

Ragdoll cat

On This Page

  • About Ragdoll Cat - What is a Ragdoll Cat?
  • Ragdoll Cat Breed Origin and History
  • Ragdoll Cat Personality and Temperament
  • Ragdoll Cat Physical Traits
  • Health Problem with Ragdoll Cat Breed
  • Ragdoll Cat Care and Grooming Needs
  • Ragdoll Cat Facts and Interesting Information
  • Ragdoll Cat as an Emotional Support Animal

Ragdoll is a semi-longhaired beautiful cat breed with captivating blue eyes. Ragdoll cats belong to the large size and muscular group of cat breeds. This cat is an all-rounder best buddy for almost everyone. This breed is best known for its calm and docile personality and affectionate nature.

If you want a companion animal that has the potential to become your best friend and support animal, choose a ragdoll. These felines provide love, affection, and attention to their owners. They would love to spend hours with their human family and cuddle with them.

The Ragdoll cat breed is highly intelligent and quick learners. You can teach them anything with positive reinforcement in the form of food and praise treats. They can learn to respond and come when you call them.

Want to learn more about this beautiful and affectionate cat breed?

Continue reading this blog. Here you will learn everything about the ragdoll cat breed.

About Ragdoll Cat - What is a Ragdoll Cat?

Ragdoll is a cat breed with a colorpoint coat and blue eyes. Ann Baker -a well known American breeder- developed this breed in the 1960s. This cat is well known for her happy, peaceful, and sweet personality. These cats are always ready for a good and long cuddle session and happy to relax in your arms.

Ragdoll has a loving and friendly personality. She will meet you at the door to welcome you home every day you come back from work. If you are looking for a companion animal as an ESA, you cannot find a better option than these easy-going felines.

Ragdoll Cat Overview

Here is a quick overview of a powerful but extremely relaxed ragdoll cat.

Ragdoll Cat Breed Origin and History

The first Ragdoll cat was born in Riverside, California, in the 1960s. Ragdoll cat was developed by Ann Baker, a well-known breeder in California. The origin of the Ragdoll consisted almost entirely of free-roaming cats. This breed is the result of a mating between Josephine and Birman or Burmese-like cats.

Baker’s foundation contains Josephine, a domestic longhair having a white coat with seal mitted or black tuxedo pattern. She also owned several other longhaired cats of unknown ancestry, which she found in her neighborhood. Josephine was a Persian/Angora type cat who had sired several litters by unknown male Burmese like or Birman cats. One of the litters had the Siamese point coloration.

Later, Josephine gave birth to many kittens with placid, calm, and gentle personalities. They had beautiful long coats identified by a Himalayan pattern and tend to relax when picked up. When more of the same type of litter was produced, Baker obtained many cats from her neighbor. She begins to develop what is now known as the Ragdoll.

Baker carefully bred ragdoll for getting desirable traits, like pointed coloration, gentle behavior, and tendency to go limp when picked up. Ragdoll is one of the largest cat breeds. The females can reach up to 15 pounds, and males can reach up to whopping 20 pounds. They also possess some exceptional genes, either recessive or masked by their dominant white color, allowing for some striking offsprings.

In 1971, Baker trademarked the name Ragdoll, and after years of selective breeding, ragdoll developed into the breed known today. Bakers made her own registry, the International Ragdoll Cat Association (IRCA). She imposed strict standards for breeders who want to breed ragdoll or people who want to buy or sell cats under that name. Moreover, these cats cannot be registered by any cat associations and accepted by any major cat show or organization.

In 1975, Denny and Laura Dayton created a group while breaking the ranks with IRCA. They aimed to get ragdolls recognized by big cat organizations. They started breeding with the pair of IRCA cats. And successfully created the standard breed now accepted by major registries, i.e., FIFe and the CFA.

In 1994, another group left IRCA and created its own association, owing to strict breeding restraints. They developed the Ragamuffin breed because no offshoot groups can legally call their cats ragdoll as Baker owned the name rights. In February 2000, CFA championship status was granted to the breed. The breed was finally recognized for the championship by every major North American Cat Association.

In 2005, the trademark on ragdoll was not renewed, which allowed other groups to call their cats ragdolls. The Ragdoll Fancier Club International (RFCI) is the largest international ragdoll breed club. The ragdoll finally earned the place in the spotlight, just like she earned a place in the hearts of people everywhere.

Ragdoll Cat Personality and Temperament

Docile, sweet, and calm personality traits were the reason for breeding this cat. Unlike many other cats, they are known for relaxing in the arms of people who hold them. They are possibly the most laid back of all domestic cat breeds. The mild-mannered and being congenial makes them a perfect indoor companion.

Ragdolls are devotedly wrapped in silky fur, loving loyalty with gentle white paws. These cats are generally content, undermining, and tolerate most situations. They love their people and make extremely loyal and devoted pets. These cats love flowing around the house, snuggling in bed, and collapsing into a lap whenever provided a chance.

Gentle and relaxed nature are the words used to describe this breed, but that does not mean they are inactive. The relaxed disposition stems from a very trusting nature, not a lack of feeling. With positive reinforcement in the form of treats, they often learn to retrieve toys, play fetch, and good behaviors. They love to enter into family activities, come and respond when called by name.

They ask you for petting and remind you of mealtime in their sweet and small voice but are not unnecessarily vocal. They have nice etiquettes and are very easy to live with. Usually, you’ll see them on the sofa or bed but not higher than that. They prefer to be on the same level with their owner instead of sitting at the highest points.

Ragdoll Cat Physical Traits

The ragdoll is one of the largest domestic cat breeds, with a large frame, sturdy body, and proportionate legs. Here are the physical attributes of ragdoll cats.

  • Long
  • Medium at base with a slight taper
  • Proportionate to the body
  • Semi long and silky coat
  • Plush with medium undercoat
  • Medium ruff
  • Cheeks in line with the wedge
  • Medium length nose
  • Well developed chin
  • Large
  • Vivid blue oval
  • Moderately slanted
  • Medium length
  • Medium-heavy musculature
  • Large and round paws
  • Slightly heavier hind legs
  • Solid and broad
  • Long and large
  • Rectangular shaped
  • Muscular and firm
  • Proportionately large with a broad, modified wedge
  • Gently rounded muzzle
  • Strong and heavy neck
  • Medium-sized
  • Moderately flared
  • Wide-set
  • Rounded tips
  • Tilted forward

Ragdoll Cat Color and Patterns

Despite having a plush coat, it mainly consists of long guard hairs with a medium undercoat. According to the Cat Fancier Association (CFA), medium ruff and plush coat is the reason for low shedding and matting. However, they come in six different colors, including seal, blue, chocolate, lilac, red, and cream. The lynx and tortoiseshell variations are included in all colors and patterns.


The ragdoll kittens are born white and start to develop colors between 8 to 10 weeks. They reach full color and coat at 3 to 4 years of age. Ragdolls come in four different color patterns:

  1. 1. Mitted: Pointed with white paws and abdomen with or without a white line or spot in the face. But “belly strips”, white stripes from chin to genitals, and white chin are necessary. Mitted ragdolls are often confused with Birman, but they can be identified by the difference in size.
  2. 2. Colorprint: Classic pointed markings with no white anywhere in the coat. One-color darkening at the paws, tail, ears, and nose.
  3. 3. Blue Point: These cats have a light platinum-toned body. The stomach and chest area has a bluish-grey color. The name “Blue Point” is also given because its points are bluish-grey.
  4. 4. Bi-color: It is also known as the Van pattern because of the white legs and abdomen. White inverted V on the face and patches on the back. However, it is not as common as other patterns.


  • Lynx: All the color patterns having tabby markings.
  • Tortoiseshell: Calico or tortoiseshell marking in all above patterns.

Ragdoll Cat Price - How Much Does a Ragdoll Cat Cost?

Ragdoll cats are quite expensive because they are selectively and carefully bred to achieve their highly desirable characteristics. Their price can also vary depending on the pedigree, transportation cost, and availability. It also depends on whether you want to showcase your cat or you want to breed them further.

Generally, you can expect to pay a couple of hundred dollars to thousands of dollars. However, most of the ragdoll kittens cost around $800 to $2000. When you buy a ragdoll from a breeder, you generally purchase a kitten which is more expensive than a fully grown cat. There are many fully grown cats for sale because they might be retired as breeding animals.

Health Problem with Ragdoll Cat Breed

Ragdoll is generally a healthy breed; however, these cats are associated with inherited forms of heart disease. Health problems that can affect ragdolls are:

  • Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP): It is a viral disease that affects both domestic and wild cats and is caused by a feline coronavirus. This coronavirus is different from the coronavirus that causes Covid-19 in humans. However, it does not cause any significant disease aside from mild diarrhea.
  • Urinary problems: According to a study, ragdolls are at higher risk of getting kidney/ureter infections.
  • Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy: It is a common form of heart disease that is inherited in ragdolls. It causes the heart walls to thickens, which makes the heart pump less efficiently.
  • Increased risk for calcium oxalate bladder stone.

Ragdoll Cat Care and Grooming Needs

The ragdoll has a moderate long fur coat with a little undercoat which requires regular grooming. The coat is less likely to mat and shed, which means you need regular brushing to keep it in good condition. The coat is at its peak in the winter because the seasonal and hormonal fluctuations affect the coat length. Also, neutered and spayed ragdolls usually have lush coats all around the year due to the lack of hormonal fluctuations.

Comb the coat twice a week with a stainless steel comb to remove tangles and dead hairs. Thoroughly comb the hairs on the legs, especially where the legs meet the body, because matts occur mostly there. Ragdolls love the attention they get during grooming sessions; if you are kind with them and do not tear their hair.

Clean the tail from bits of poop stuck to the fur with a baby wipe. Trim the nails every couple of weeks or whenever required. Regularly brush the teeth to prevent periodontal disease; weekly brushing is good, but daily dental hygiene is better than anything. A bath every few weeks or every few months is needed to keep your cat healthy and clean.

Moreover, check the ears weekly and clean them with a cotton ball or soft damp cloth if they look dirty. Do not use cotton swabs; they might damage the interior of the ear. To get your cat used to grooming habits, start the process when they are kittens.

Cats are very particular about clean litter boxes and bathroom hygiene, so you need to provide them with a spotlessly clean litter box. Provide them a super-sized litter box to make sure the cat has a lot of space to turn around and squat. Make sure your cat has access to high-quality and healthy food all the time.

Keep your ragdoll indoor to protect her from attacks by coyotes, dogs, diseases spread by other cats. Cats who go outdoors also run the risk of getting into accidents or being stolen by someone. Regular vet checkups, parasite control, vaccination, and annual health checks are also advisable.

Ragdoll Cat Facts and Interesting Information

Having a ragdoll in your house is the best decision you can make. Here are some amazing facts that will convince you to have a ragdoll cat.

Ragdoll Cat as an Emotional Support Animal

The easy-going and laid-back cat is perfectly suited to family life. These cats love being a guest at tea parties, riding in a baby buggy, or playing dress-up games. They are a perfect choice for families with pets and children. However, you need to supervise young children to ensure they do not torment the cat.

Ragdolls are pet-friendly and happy to live with other cats and dogs, thanks to their amiable disposition. These all characteristics make ragdoll cats a perfect option for being an emotional support cat. These cats are best known for being family cats and companion pets, so they will provide you love and affection.

Once you get to know the ragdoll, you would never choose any other cat. They can easily learn to get along with everyone, including humans and pets. They would love to meet you at the door whenever you come home and will be by your side all the time. In the presence of a ragdoll cat, you would never have to be alone; they will accompany you all the time and spend quality time with you.

If you need a good lap cat, this cat is again the best option as she would tend to go limp in the arms of whoever holds her. They are a perfect cuddler and, in short, an all-rounder best buddy for almost everyone. Register your ragdoll as ESA by getting a legitimate ESA letter from RealESALetter.com.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are ragdoll cats high maintenance?

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No, despite having moderately long fur, ragdolls are not high maintenance nor low maintenance. They are easygoing and need an average level of care and grooming. Regular brushing, weekly nail trimming, and monthly bathing are sufficient to keep your cat clean and healthy.

Why do ragdoll cats go limp?

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Ragdoll cats crave human attention because of their docile and affectionate personality. They tend to relax and go limp whenever you pick them up and hold them in your arms. They just love to be held by their owner, which is why they are called floppy cats.

Can a ragdoll cat be left alone?

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No, as with any other cat, you should leave your ragdoll alone for a long time. As they are family cats and crave human attention, they cannot live alone for a longer period. They are social animals and require constant contact and attention, so leaving them alone is not a good idea. They will become destructive and get depressed due to loneliness.

How long do indoor ragdoll cats live?

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The average lifespan of indoor ragdoll cats is 12 to 23 years. However, this is just an average, and just like other domestic cats, the average life expectancy of a cat can vary. Providing a healthy and proper nutritional diet can add some years to your cat's life.

Are ragdoll cats smart?

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In addition to being docile, loving, and affectionate, these cats are highly intelligent. With positive reinforcement in the form of treats, you can teach them anything, including good behavior, and respond to a call.

Do ragdoll cats scratch furniture?

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Yes, ragdolls have a bad habit of scratching, and if the furniture is the only thing available, they will definitely scratch on it. They are bound to get up to something scratching, so provide them some scratching toys if you want to protect your furniture.

Is Grumpy cat a ragdoll?

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No, ragdoll and grumpy cats are different cat breeds. Grumpy cats look like ragdolls and sometimes look like Persian or snowshoe cats.




Harper Jefcoat


Harper Jefcoat

Harper Jefcoat is a dedicated pet enthusiast and esteemed author at RealESALetter.com. With a profound passion for animals, Harper combines extensive knowledge and personal experience to provide insightful and informative content. Specializing in canine behavior and wellness, he strives to empower pet owners with the tools and understanding they need to nurture and care for their furry friends effectively. Harper’s writings reflect his commitment to enhancing the lives of pets and their owners, making him a trusted voice in the pet community.

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