GENERAL BREED INFO

Best Family Cats: Top 10 Breeds that Your Family Will Fall in Love With

Image showing a lazy british-shorthair-cat
Stella Noble
Written by Stella Noble

Starting a family is a wonderful thing, but you may need to make many adjustments to your lifestyle—including the matters related to your pet cat. Not all cats can adapt well to living as a part of a family—especially a family with little kids. You need to select a cat breed that is known for their gentleness and good nature so they wouldn’t hurt your child either by accident or because they feel annoyed.

The best family cats can be not only a pet but also a part of the family. Family cats are lovable, affectionate, protective, and a lot of fun to be around. They can adapt to any environment, and in situations where they are not allowed to go outside, they acclimatize to being indoor pets.

Image showing and Abyssinian Cat

What’s more, for a family with kids, bringing in these little creatures can be an excellent way to help nurture the children into loving, compassionate, respectable, and committed human beings. If you manage to pick the right family cat, they will definitely bring a lot of joy and laughter into the household.

Without a doubt, one of the huge influencing factors in picking a family cat is in actuality the sort of family you have. No two families are the same, and as such, there is no one-size-fits-all family cat. That said, here is a guide listing some of the best-known family cat breeds. We will give a detailed explanation regarding the personality traits common in each breed so you can match them with your family’s unique needs.

Top 10 Best Family Cats

Choosing a cat to be a part of your family goes beyond the attractiveness of their physical appearance. Here, we have incorporated a rundown of the best breeds when it comes to family cats given their attitude (with kids, strangers, and other animals), health concerns, breed standards, personality traits, temperament, as well as training and maintenance costs.

Persian

Of all the domestic cat breeds in the world, none is as distinct or as highly recognized as the Persian. Cats of this breed highlight rich looks and excellent conduct. They have a loving temperament, are social, and are anything but difficult to train and handle. These cats are also quiet and affectionate, making them a perfect match for apartment dwellers.

Persian-Cat laying down and relaxing

Persians can adjust well to almost any condition. However, in spite of the fact that they coexist well with animals of a different species (like a dog, for example), it isn’t advisable to leave them alone for extended periods as they get lonely rather easily.

Persians work best in the type of family where one of the members usually stays at home. That person should not only be willing to socialize with the cat, but also to handle frequent grooming, as that is an essential worry with this cat breed.

It can be quite a chore. Their thick and long hair requires regular washing and brushing. Other than their coat health, you’ll also want to watch out for their eyes. Their eyes can get rather watery. You’ll need to wipe them as often as you can so the area around them wouldn’t get stained.

Image showing little persian cat sleeping

Persian cats are also associated with some health problems as they grow older. Breathing difficulties, kidney problems, birthing problems, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, and progressive retinal atrophy are but a few of the health concerns you should watch out for.

These and other maintenance costs are some of the things you might want to look into before settling on a Persian cat. Otherwise, this is the classic family cat that will provide you with endless joy, companionship, and fun.

Siamese

Siamese cats are small bundles of joy. They are verbal, loving and effortless to groom. Although, they are not suitable for busy families where the members often leave home for extended periods of time because they don’t like to be left alone.

Image showing a Siamese cat on a table looking at the camera

They cherish attention and may misbehave particularly when overlooked. Siamese can get rather aggressive, snippy or awkwardly skittish when they lack the attention that they need. Although, they can also be the most loyal and affectionate cats once they’ve warmed up to you. As long as they are well cared for and given the attention they need, the Siamese can be your family’s perfect companion.

Ragdoll

Among the cat breeds that are most sought after today, Ragdolls almost always rank in the top 5. These cats are enormous as you can find a single one weighing up to 30 pounds. Well, Ragdolls may not be the classic lap cat, but their beautiful outward appearance and gentle temperament make this cat quite desirable in any family setting.

At first sight, you might mistake Ragdolls to be touchy and grouchy as they have quite the sullen face. But in actuality, they are one of the most laid back, quiet, and easy-going cat breed we know.

Beautiful ragdoll cat looking straight to the camera

In spite of their gigantic size, you should realize that leaving this cat outside is not advised because they can’t defend themselves all that well. Ragdolls are a peace-loving creature, and they should always be kept indoors in a loving environment so they can thrive. Overall, their calm and affectionate nature make the perfect combination for a family cat, especially where children are involved.

Abyssinian

Brilliant and amazingly athletic, Abyssinian is one of the most popular cat breeds in the US. These cats love to be around people. Although they do not qualify as your typical lap cat, they will often come find you when they deem that it’s time to cuddle.

Abyssinians weigh approximately 8 to 10 pounds and live up to 15 years. They are medium shedders, which makes them easy to groom. A dose of daily brushing works for these cute cats.

Image showing an Abyssin cat playing and looking at the camera

Because they are always in constant motion, Abyssinians need to be let free to explore their surroundings. This is the kind of cat that you will find in your cupboards, bathroom, and kitchen backyard. They are playful and are for sure very curious. In this regard, you might not want to leave them alone for long hours as they can get quite destructive.

A concern that you might want to note with this cat breed is that they are prone to some health conditions. Renal amyloidosis, Luxating patella, progressive retinal atrophy, and pyruvate kinase enzyme deficiency are some of the health issues you might experience with this breed. That said, we must reiterate that the health and destructive concerns put aside, Abyssinians’ playful and friendly nature make them excellent candidates for an active family.

Sphynx

If you are looking for an intelligent and companionable family cat, then the Sphynx is the cat for you. Although unusual appearance-wise, Sphynxes are loving, loyal, and incredibly smart. This cat breed also tends to be very attached to their owners. They adore human company and are quite playful. For a family with kids, this can be a valuable pet addition and an excellent way to teach your kids the essence of compassion and respect.

Two Sphynx cats, kitten with mother

These cats may look naked, but they actually have a layer of very short hair. This is an advantage when it comes to ease of grooming, although you’ll want to protect them carefully from the sun and the elements as they are prone to be vulnerable to skin conditions.

They also need to be fed more food at meal times due to their high metabolism. But generally speaking, Sphynxes have very few medical problems. We can say that they are a robust breed whose health concerns mostly only generate from their unique physical nature—their hairlessness.

Balinese

The Balinese cat is another favorite family cat breed. When you look at a Balinese cat and a Siamese, you may surmise that they are of the same breed. But in actuality, it’s just their body markings that are similar. To differentiate between a Balinese and a Siamese, just look at the tail. The former has a bushier tail compared to the latter.

Image showing a Balinese cat outside in the yard

Appearances aside, Balinese cats are known to be quite attentive to their owners. They will often follow you around and would want to cuddle from time to time. It is also important to note that the Balinese cat is a pretty energetic creature. Therefore, if you plan to leave them alone for long hours, you might also want to leave them with a chew toy or something to play with to keep them busy until you get back.

Birman

The Birman with its traditional Buddhist history is an astounding family cat breed. The cat highlights delightful sapphire blue eyes with a long white coat that grows darker as the cat grows older. A Birman’s hair is long and luxurious, yet it isn’t inclined to matting. Although, it still needs customary brushing—week by week if conceivable.

Birman cat laying down and looking at the camera

Birmans are known to be loving, loyal and quite attentive. They are gentle, astute and to a great degree curious. This is the type of cat that will want to know what it is that you are hiding in your closet or under the bed.

They will greet you at the door and tail you everywhere you go. Albeit curious, Birman cats are not the best climbers. They will dependably remain close to the ground, but they may also get themselves in trouble by climbing too high and not knowing how to get down. You’ll have to come to their rescue in these cases.

Image showing a birman cat walking through the leafs

They communicate with a soft call and are quite aggressive. These cats love to play but will understand when you are busy. However, they do not like to be left alone, so be mindful when you plan to go out.

Like the Sphynx, Birmans have very few health concerns. You just need to be mindful of them overeating as they can grow obese. All things considered, this is generally an excellent family pet.

British Shorthair

If you are looking for a rare cat breed, apart from the Sphynx, the British short hair is another unique breed that you may be interested in. This is an English breed with a very rich history and is often appreciated for their physical strength and natural intelligence.

British Shorthair Kittens laying on the ground

Weighing up to 17 pounds at a general height of 14 inches, we must agree that the Brits as some call them are a pretty masculine cat. Their physical form and weight make them poor climbers, and some are even afraid of heights. As such, you can leave these cats in the house alone without having to worry about the stuff in your cupboard getting destroyed or the likes.

For a family cat, the British short hair is very perky and keen. Their short hair and compact body make the cat easier to groom. They are mainly great with kids and other family pets. By and large, Brits make fantastic family pets.

Oriental

For a dynamic family, Orientals can be the perfect match. Orientals have a smooth body and bounteous stamina. They are inquisitive and brilliant as well. Like the Birmans, Orientals will always follow you around, putting their nose into whatever it is you are doing. They do pine for attention and can get quite aggressive when ignored.

Oriental Shorthair Kitten sitting on a table outside

Orientals are robust and come in a variety of colors and patterns. They are incredibly savvy cats as already specified and furthermore very social. An Oriental will bond with your family members including other pets pretty quickly and will always voice their worries and concerns about the people they care for.

An advantage with this type of cat breed is that they are effortless to groom. A weekly brushing to remove loose hair is all these cats need. You must know that this cat is super active, as such, you should allow them enough time to play and stay trim. Concerning their health, just ensure that they don’t overeat and get fat.

Somali

The Somali is another fantastic family companion. Like the Balinese, they are very playful, but also enjoy a moment or two of warm cuddle. This breed is loving, affectionate and loyal to their owners.

Somali cat laying down in the house

They weigh about 6 to 12 lbs. and live up to 15 years. They make great lap cats and can become great friends with children in the family. Their hair is long and thick, which helps them a lot during colder months. The good thing is that they shed moderately, which means that caring for them is quite easy unlike most cats with long hair.

Somalis are playful, no doubt. They need to be given adequate time to play and stay trim. These cats are also social, and they adapt quite quickly and well in households with multiple pets and children.

Two beautiful Somali cats looking at the camera

Somalis are not a pure breed. They are artificial, and the consistent inbreeding has affected their genetics. These cats are highly susceptible to blood, dental, and biochemical disorders. Otherwise, Somalis are a healthy lot that loves to play, socialize, and help out with family chores (by following you around as you clean). You will enjoy having a Somali cat around.

Conclusion

This is a guide listing some of the best domestic cat breeds with their unique traits to help you find a suitable one for your family. There are many different cat breeds to choose from, as you can see from the list above. Picking out one that is ideal for you and your family can be a fun and exciting experience. Ensure that you do your research well on the different breeds available as this is an important decision that will affect the whole family for many years to come.

Remember that each cat breed is unique. You will find that some cats require a lot of attention while there are others that need extra care. Understand that a cat is a living being, and from the moment you decide to adopt them into your family, you become responsible for their happiness and well-being.

Image showing a little cat playing on the couch

We trust that you now have the capacity to pick a cat that makes an incredible companion and pet for your entire family. Are you interested in adopting any of the breeds we’ve mentioned above? Or do you know of another breed that you think will make the perfect family cat? Let us know what you think in the comments section below!

About the author
Stella Noble
Stella Noble

Stella Noble lives in Warren, Michigan with her family and three cats. She is a Certified Cat Trainer and a member of the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants.

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