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Top 12 America’s Most Popular Cat Breeds for 2021

Toni Grzunov - last updated on May 14th, 2021

Cats are peculiar pets. There is something appealing about the behavior of felines that makes them incredibly popular pets in the USA and all over the world. People love the elegant way these animals move and their calm approach to cuddling sessions.

In this article, we will take a look at some of the most popular cat breeds in the USA of 2021. There are cat breeds that have been around for quite some time, so they have garnered a large following. Others have fans because of a specific physical feature or their temperament. Whatever the case may be, we’ve rounded up the peoples’ favorites.

Which cat breed is your favorite? Do your tastes align with other cat lovers? Check out our list to find the most popular cats, and maybe you’ll find yourself wanting to get a new companion for your house!

Ragdoll

Ragdoll Cat

According to the Cat Fancier’s Association (CFA), Ragdoll is the number 1 most registered cat breed in the United States. It has been topping the list for a few years in a row now. Its combination of beautiful looks and loving temperament makes the job of getting that number one spot a piece of cake!

These cats are actually known for their personality, more so than their looks. They are extremely gentle and affectionate and make for wonderful companions. Many compare their temperament to that of a dog.

Ragdoll cats are quite large and have a solid build. Their hair is on the longer side, and they resemble Siamese cats quite a bit. All Ragdoll cats have strikingly blue eyes, and it will be the first thing you notice about them for sure.

Persian

Persian Cat

The flat, somewhat scrunched faces are the trait Persian cats are most known for. They look absolutely adorable, and most people will probably recognize this breed immediately!

The Persian’s silky flowing coat is truly gorgeous. It is soft and long and can come in a wide variety of colors. Not only does it look amazing, but you will also love touching it, due to its nice texture. The coat is glossy and has a specific vitality to it.

This breed of cats is another one that will unconditionally show love to its owners. Persian cats are quiet and gentle and make for amazing pets. However, they can be a bit cold towards new people and might take a while to get used to them.

Persian cats are one of the oldest cat breeds we know of, hailing all the way back to when Iran was known as Persia.

Sphynx

Sphynx

The Sphynx is the most popular hairless cat, and given its completely unique look, it’s not hard to see why! Although these cats look completely hairless, they do actually have a light covering of down. However, it is barely noticeable, and you might feel it when you stroke your pet Sphynx.

This makes them a great pet choice for people with allergies since they barely shed! Being hairless is not the only striking thing about these cats. They have big eyes and ears and pronounced cheekbones. Their skin is wrinkled, which is another unique detail.

Their look is only one reason why these cats are so popular. Their personality also makes them desirable pets. They love attention and are playful and energetic.

Siamese

Siamese

Siamese cats are definitely one of the most recognizable and distinctive breeds of Oriental cats. Originating from Thailand (which was then known as Siam), these cats are usually cream-colored, and have brown paws and blue eyes.

They are known for their pointy” look. Their ears are large and triangular and are normally grey-brown, which is the standard color of the face of these cats. If you want a different color, check the Colorpoint Shorthair. They share the pattern with the Siamese but have a range of sixteen different point colors

Extraordinarily beautiful, Siamese cats rank among the most popular cat breeds all over the world. They are known for their extremely high intelligence. Siamese are also quite talkative! They love the company of people and will require a lot of playtime.

Don’t leave your Siamese cat alone for too long, they don’t enjoy that!

Himalayan

Himalayan Cat

The Himalayan looks almost identical to the Persian, with only a few small differences. This makes sense since this breed was bred from crossing Persian and Siamese cats. This gave it a few unique traits, the first one being the point coloration of the coat.

Their blue eyes are another detail that makes them different from the Persians. Other than that, they do look quite similar, which is why some cat associations even consider the Himalayan a sub-breed.

Still, they are generally considered a breed of their own, as they should be. These cats make wonderful pets for people that love staying indoors. Himalayans are affectionate, intelligent, and extroverted. They are calm and have a sweet disposition.

Himalayans absolutely adore petting and grooming and will display their pleasure vocally! They love trying to talk with people in general, which is one of their cutest traits.

Bengal

Bengal Cat

Bengals are known for looking like wild cats. Their marbled coat and muscular body definitely add to that impression! They were bred by mixing domestic cats with Asian Leopard Cats. This makes them look exotic, like a combination of a tiger and a leopard.

They have an M-shaped mark on their foreheads, black coloring around the eyes and their coat is smooth and shiny. Bengals are usually longer than regular house cats due to the extra vertebra in their backs.

These cats are playful and will exhibit kitten-like behavior even when they are fully grown. You will need to keep your pet Bengal busy and entertained constantly. They will demand your attention, so be wary of that.

Their temperament is probably the result of them being a hybrid species. One of their parent breeds is non-domesticated, making Bengal cats highly playful and active. They are the only domestic cats with markings similar to those of jaguars, leopards, or ocelots.

Exotic Shorthair

Exotic Shorthair Cat

Exotic Shorthairs are extremely popular cats that are a cross between Persians and American Shorthairs. They are actually quite similar to Persian Cats in almost everything but one simple detail - their coat. 

Exotics have a short and thick coat that they are capable of keeping clean without much assistance. This makes them excellent pets for people that really want a Persian cat because of its personality, but don’t have the time for the necessary grooming.

When it comes to personality, Exotics are much livelier than their parent breed. These kitties are playful, sweet and will show their affection to you constantly. Many agree that they show more loyalty and affection than any other cat breed.

Expect your Exotic Shorthair to follow you around the home, but seeing as how cute these cats are, we’re sure you won’t mind.

Devon Rex

Devon Rex

The Devon Rex has a unique charm to the way it looks, reminiscent of a cartoon cat. It has oversized ears, large eyes and looks as if it is constantly smiling. 

It also has a personality to match. These kittens are zany, they love riding on your shoulders and will learn new tricks without a problem. They are highly intelligent and will always find new, irresistible ways to show affection.

Devon Rex has a short silky coat that almost feels like suede when you touch it. Sometimes the coat can be curly, which makes these kitties look extra adorable.

These cats don’t like being left alone, and many compare their personality to that of a dog. However, they also love to add that it is mixed with the personality of a monkey as well. This means that these cats are lively and playful and are a joy to be around!

Maine Coon

Giant Main Coon in the snow

The name of this breed references the legend that it is actually a mix made by crossing a cat and a raccoon. While that of course isn’t true, Maine Coons are 100% cats, their fur and tail do resemble those of a wild raccoon.

This gives these cats a unique look, which is easily noticeable thanks to their size. Maine Coons are among the largest cat breeds in the world, which is something you should be aware of if you’re thinking of getting a kitten as your pet.

These cats love playing and chasing things. They will hunt down any pests that can be found around your house. Maine Coons won’t demand your attention, but might curiously follow you around the house.

They don’t love sitting in your lap and much prefer being able to move around as they please.

British Shorthair

British Shorthair

British Shorthairs are chubby, full cheeked cats that absolutely love sitting in laps and relaxing. They know how to enjoy themselves, as well as what they want, and will spend every moment while you are preparing a meal walking around your legs.

They are quite large in size, which pairs well with their calm and dignified behavior. These cats are quiet and easygoing. Don’t expect a British Shorthair to get excited over anything!

All of this makes them perfect pets for large families, especially those with children. You will never see cats of this breed jumping around or climbing your furniture. They are a bit clumsy as well!

British Shorthairs can be left alone at home and will patiently await your return while resting, but they do love being around people more than anything.

American Shorthair

American Shorthair

Extremely popular in the United States, possibly due to the fact that they get along well with other pets, American Shorthairs are selectively bred cats that follow strict breeding standards.

They are robust and athletically built, with a slender body and a long tail. Many like to call them “working cats” because of their athletic, muscular build. While they may snuggle with you all day, just know that American Shorthairs are always alert and ready for action.

Their personality is well-rounded and they respond well to humans and other animals. They are highly sociable but can still be independent when needed. 

Due to the breeding standards, American Shorthairs are among the healthiest cats in the world! They can live up to 20 years.

Domestic Shorthair

Domestic Shorthair

Domestic Shorthairs are not a pure cat breed in the pure sense of the word. Many consider them “mutts” because of their unknown, mixed heritage. Basically, they are common house cats that can be found all over in many households.

Since their heritage can be extremely varied and all over the place, their physical attributes can be wildly different from one cat to the other. There are some common traits though. They are medium-sized, have short coats that can be of any color, and their faces are round.

Most believe that these cats were originally domesticated around 2000 BC in Egypt, and then they started making their way around the planet. One thing they are especially known for is their ability to hunt rodents!

This was their first assignment when they appeared in North America during the pioneer settlement period. They were known as working cats then and were tasked with catching rats. It seems that they were doing a good job because nowadays around 90% of all cats in the USA are Domestic Shorthairs.

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