How to Choose the Right Cat Breed for You

Learn about different cat breeds and their traits to help you pick which kind of cat will make the right pet for you.


While most household cats are random-bred cats

there actually exists a stunning array of pedigreed cats for people to choose from, should they want to spend the extra money.  

To pick a breed, be it random or pedigreed, first consider whether would you prefer to have a long-haired or short-haired cat.  While the hair length will make no difference in personality, it does make a considerable difference in the amount of work an owner has to do in order to keep the cat clean and tangle-free.  If you love the beauty of a long silky coat, prepare yourself for a little extra work.  

On advantage that comes with choosing a pedigreed cat is a predictability.  You know ahead of time what the cat will look like when it has matured.  You can also expect your cat to exhibit personality traits consistent with his breed.  

If you want a short-haired cat to choose a breed of cat from the following list:  Abyssinian, American Shorthair, American Wirehair, Bombay, British Shorthair, Burmese, Chartreux, European Burmese, Exotic, Havana Brown, Korat, Ocicat, Oriental, Russian Blue, Siamese, Singapura, Tonkinese.

Long-haired cat breeds include the following: Balinese, Birman, Exotic Longhair, Javanese, Norwegian Forest Cat, Oriental Longhair, Persian, Ragamuffin, Ragdoll, Siberian, Somali, Turkish Angora, Turkish Van.
If hair length is not a deciding factor for you, think about other traits you’d like your cat to have.

Certain breeds of cats, some long-haired, some-short haired have unique characteristics that help them stand out from the rest.  For example, both the short-haired breeds, the American Bobtail, and Manx are tailless cats and the Sphynx is hairless.  Munchkins are short-legged cats.  For unusual ears look to either the short-haired American Curl, whose ears have a backward curl or the long-haired Scottish Fold, whose ears have a forward curl.  Cats with kinky or curly coats include the short-haired Cornish Rex and Devon Rex, and the long-haired LaPerm and Selkirk Rex.  The Egyptian Mau, a cat recently featured in the movie Catwoman, is well known for its incredible speed; it can run at an astounding 30 mph.  

If the breed is not an issue for you, consider owning a random-bred cat, which is a cat whose breed is mixed or uncertain.  A random-bred cat can be found in all different coats, colors, and sizes, so you can get one that looks just about any way you please.  Because random-bred cats have a genetic make-up that is a result of mixing stock, this type of cat will be at low risk for serious health problems that are specific to certain purebreds.  Of course, when getting a random-bred cat you are gaining good health, but losing the predictability factor.  If you acquire the cat while it is still a kitten, you have no way of knowing how long its coat will be, what type of temperament it will have, or how large it will become, unless you buy the cat as an adult.  In that case, its coat, size, and personality traits should be apparent.  Still, in the end, a healthy cat will live longer and cost less in vet care and both of those things are important.