Everyone agrees that the Persian was at the top of the list of "possessions" highly esteemed by royalty, from the king of Persia to queens and kings of England. In the late 19th century, North America discovered the Persian cat, and it soon reached the pinnacle of honor that it still holds today – that of being the single most popular cat in the United States!
The "Ragdoll" is a breed of cat best known for its docile, sweet, placid temperament. An unusually large, muscular, semi-long-haired cat with a soft and silky coat the texture of rabbit fur, it has striking blue eyes and a distinctive colorpoint coat. Its name derives from the cat's tendency to go completely limp and relaxed, conforming to the shape of the space made available to it, like a ragdoll would. With a friendly, easy-going temperament and seemingly little fear, the Ragdoll is only suitable for indoor living as, oddly, it has no instinct to defend itself against attack.
The Maine Coon is the second most popular breed of domestic cat in America, (The Persian is first). It is one of the oldest breeds in North America, and is the official State Cat of Maine.
The Siamese cat is one of the first clearly recognized breeds of Oriental cat. The stories about their origins are diverse, complex, and fanciful, but they are believed to have originated in Southeast Asia, specifically from Thailand, formerly known as "Siam." In Thailand, they are called "Wichian Mat," which translates to "Moon Diamond." They are one of the most popular breeds of cat in Europe and North America and consistently rank among the top ten. They are adored by their fanciers, for their intelligence, playfulness, ability to hold (loud) conversations, loyalty, stylishness, and beauty. According to one owner, they have "a classy look about them that commands attention, and a personality to match!"
Bengal cats are the product of breeding domestic cats with wild Asian Leopard Cats. The result is an exotic animal that is the size of a house cat or a little larger, and looks like a cross between a Leopard and a Tiger – truly an extraordinary-looking cat! Most Bengal felines have a distinctive "M" on their foreheads, what appears to be heavy black eye make-up, along with sleek coats, high haunches, and an extra vertebra in their backs that makes them longer than ordinary housecats.
The Abyssinian has become one of the most popular breeds of short-haired cat in America. A distinguished type of domesticated cat with a very distinctive "ticked" coat, there are many diverse but unsubstantiated stories about its origins, often revolving around Ethiopia. Generally, the Abyssinian is a wonderful cat for an owner seeking a very active companion with extremely high intelligence. A congenial pet who is easy to care for, it will earn lifelong compliments for its exquisitely beautiful coat.
The Sphynx is a rare breed of cat best known for its hairless coat. According to the French breed standard, the Sphynx is "part monkey, part dog, part child, and part cat." (www.petfinders.com.) The breed does seem to possess some personality traits of each, despite what skeptical geneticists may say about the feasibility of such a combination. While the hairless cat may not appeal to everyone's tastes, the Sphynx, because of its unique appearance and charming temperament, has won an active and enthusiastic worldwide following.
The Savannah is a tall, lean, graceful cat with striking dark spots and other bold, exotic, jungle-like markings. Savannahs result from crossing African Serval cats with domestic cats, and they closely resemble the Serval, but are smaller in stature. The breed is affectionate and outgoing, and possesses an exceptionally long neck, legs, very tall ears, and medium-length tail. The Savannah is mysteriously beautiful, exceptionally graceful, and a well-balanced cat. They are much more social than average domestic cats, and can be compared to dogs in their measure of loyalty and some of their behaviors.
The Bombay is a muscular, powerfully-built, medium-size cat with huge copper eyes and a midnight-black coat that shines like slick patent leather. The combination is spectacular, resembling a miniature panther or wild black leopard. However, the Bombay is a docile, domestic hybrid, a man-made breed, first developed by crossing a black American Shorthair with a sable Burmese.
The Serval Leptailurus Serval, known in Afrikaans as Tierboskat or "tiger-forest-cat," is an African wild cat. DNA studies have shown that the Serval is closely related to the African Golden Cat and the Caracal. Serval cats are classified as one of the largest of small exotic cats. Although they are true wild cats, they have been officially bred in captivity for more than thirty years now. However, the domestication of the Serval cat goes much further back in history, since it has been documented that the Egyptians kept Serval cats as mousers, which is definitely one of their most highly-developed skills— and the Serval cat appears in ancient Egyptian paintings, murals, and sculptures.
What kind of cat do most people prefer? That’s a very personal question. While all cats can be very haughty and independent, some display characteristics much more akin to a warm and friendly dog. Yet dog owners and cat owners will agree that cats and dogs are quite different and make pretty uniquely different pets overall. A dog will greet you with unbridled enthusiasm when you arrive home, expecting that it’s time to play and probably eat, which in most cases is a dog’s favorite activity. A cat, on the other hand, while probably happy to see you, certainly doesn’t display any of the giddy behavior of a typical dog. They don’t call them “cool cats” for nothing. No, your cat is generally most interested in you when they hear the sounds of what they recognize as feeding time...the cat food can being opened, the clatter of dishware, the activity in the kitchen.
During one cat owner’s childhood, she can remember her own cat loudly meowing while her mother cooked liver for the cat every night, rubbing against her mother’s legs over and over with obvious anticipation and then watching the cat try to eat what was probably a little too hot a delicacy, chewing noisily with her mouth open to cool it down. Her mother had solved the finicky cat eating problem once and for all by presenting the wonderfully aromatic liver dinner for the amusement of everyone observing. Just as most dog owners will enjoy the experience of their dogs wolfing down their supper practically in one gulp, we cat owners take a more elegant pride in our cats’ more delicate appreciation of their favorite food, if we in fact have solved that culinary mystery.
At Pets4You.com our customers and clients are encouraged to vote for their favorite breed of cat. Based on customer searches as well as page visits on our site, we can determine what cats are getting the most attention and probably rate as our most popular cats. While in national surveys, the top ten most popular cats may differ slightly from our list, many breeds consistently appear on every list. They include the astoundingly top cats of all which seem to appear on practically every list, including ours: (in no particular order) The Siamese, The Persian, The Ragdoll, The Sphynx, The Maine Coon, The Manx and The Bengal. After that, the list differs somewhat. While our list also includes the Siberian, the Serval and the Savannah, other national lists include the Himalayan, the Russian Blue, the American Shorthair, the Exotic, the Abyssinian, the Cornish Rex, the Oriental and the Birman.
Of the most famous cats in American culture, known primarily through film, TV, cartoons, books or other mode of celebrity, a few top cats come to mind including Garfield, The Cat in the Hat, Sylvester, Puss’n’Boots, Felix the Cat, Tom (of Tom and Jerry) and Socks, President Clinton’s famous first feline. There was also Morris, the fat cat made famous in the Purina Cat Food commercials, brought to national attention when President Nixon invited him to co-sign (with a paw-print) the National Animal Protection Bill.
Whatever cat breed you finally select as your favorite, we all know that whatever breed you own including even the lowly alley cat, as an honored part of your family, your royal pet of the house is truly the most important cat in your life. This ultimately is your favorite cat.