Dispelling Myths:

What a Ragdoll is – and isn’t




The MYTHS (you’ll find these all over the Internet):


1.      Ragdolls don’t shed.

Try telling that to our last vacuum cleaner. As my husband says, if it has hair, it sheds.


2.      Ragdolls are so docile they won’t even defend themselves in a fight. 

I have this funny scratch-shaped rash after breaking up a fight between two of my queens - let’s hope it’s not contagious.


3.      Ragdolls don’t feel pain.

They definitely do feel pain, just like any other cat. Especially after spay surgery (thank goodness for Buprenex).


4.      $725 for a PET-quality kitten – boy, you must make a lot of money!


·         Circe’s c-section/spay – my most recent vet bill - cost $4016.

·         Replacing Circe with a non-related breeding-quality queen will cost me another $1500-2000, once I’m out of grad school and have money that can be spared for the purpose (check out Graduate Tier-III quarterly resident tuition at the University of Washington).

·         The Stud fee is “pick of the litter” or the price of the first kitten sold (and if sold as a breeder, well, that’s your stud fee).

·         Vet bills have increased 25% over the past 4 years, and my babies have at least one, and often two, well-baby checks before being placed – plus vaccines. And food. And kitty litter. Never forget food or litter in your expenses.

I consider myself extraordinarily lucky if nothing goes wrong and I can break even across a year. The only people I know who make money at this are back yard breeders who cut corners and sell unhealthy kittens. My kittens are healthy. Next question?


5.      Ann Baker bred her cats with rabbits to get that bunny-soft fur.

Oh please………. Why does this crazy stuff persist?



The Internet has a lot to answer for.



THE TRUTHS (we’ve actually seen these):


Ragdolls are above and beyond all else a CAT. If you hurt them, they will resent it. If you abuse them, they will scratch and bite. If you ignore them, they will get naughty to get your attention. If you let them outside, they will decimate the local songbird population. One of my kittens is the most efficient mouser I’ve ever heard of (and according to his people, he shares – isn’t that sweet?). They are a very social cat – but they are a cat.


The Ragdoll is a long-haired cat and will definitely shed, but the fur generally doesn’t matte up unless they get something in it.  It’s not like Persian fur – it’s like Maine Coon hair, soft and silky.  They like to be brushed, which is a wonderful way to keep shedding under control, but it’s a bonding experience rather than a grooming need.


Ragdolls are one of the larger domestic cat breeds; Maine Coons are generally longer, while Ragdolls are generally heavier. I’ve had a male kitten get up to 30lbs, and his littermate sister got up to 14lbs without being considered overweight. In general, boys usually top out at around 15lbs, and girls stay long and lean at around 9lbs. As a result, they need “large” sizes in nearly everything to stay happy:  litter boxes, carriers, even scratching posts.


Also due to their large size, Ragdolls take 5 years to fully mature. This is on par with Maine Coons, Norwegian Forest Cats, and other large breed cats.


Possibly due to their large size (this is based on our observations of the larger breeds), Ragdolls are very social and friendly. They like people – especially their own. They don’t like being lonely, and usually don’t make good “onlys” (though there ARE exceptions).


Our Ragdolls seem to like water. Freshly used showers and bathtubs are their playground.  Surprisingly, our kittens also seem to like dogs. Maybe it’s because they’re very relaxed in general? Or do they simply see the possibilities of minions….?




And yes, they do play fetch.  That’s not a myth.  ;)






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