Back to all cat breeds
Characteristics, History, and Health


Western Breeds

Ragamuffin cats are well-known for their sweet and affectionate personalities and their beautifully silky-soft, thick fur. When you get home, they'll greet you at the door with a meow and happily follow you around the house. These patient and intelligent kitties are social and outgoing and tend to do well to households with families and other pets.

Main Info
Coat Pattern
Variety of patterns
Coat Length
Health Issues
  • Polycystic kidney disease (PKD)Polycystic kidney disease (PKD)
  • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM)Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM)
  • Prone to obesityProne to obesity

Ragamuffin History

The Ragamuffin breed has a very short history. This history stems from Anne Baker’s breeding efforts that led to the creation of the Ragdoll breed in the 1960s. Baker founded the International Ragdoll Cat Association (IRCA), which included several cat breeds under the label “Cheribum”. Baker went on to trademark the Ragdoll breed, so in the 1990s some IRCA breeders wanted to found a new Cheribum breed outside of the trademark, which led to the creation of the Ragamuffin.

Main Characteristics of the Ragamuffin

The Ragamuffin is a robust medium-to-large cat, heavily boned and often with a fatty pad on their lower abdomen. They have a broad head with a slightly rounded wedge shape. Their walnut-shaped eyes are large and expressive and come in all colors and shades. Their medium-sized ears have a slightly forward tilt and flare. Their legs are strong with large paws and they have long fluffy tails with plumes that are said to resemble a soft bottle brush.


Ragamuffins’ silky coats are medium to long in length, and have often been compared to a rabbit’s coat. Their eye-catching coats come in a variety of different colors and patterns. Although their coats are long and lush, they are surprisingly  “tangle-resistant” and easier to maintain than those of other longhaired breeds.


As kittens, Ragamuffins’ coats are primarily white in color, but as they age their coat colors change into any of the many available varieties, such as black, chocolate, chestnut, cinnamon, red, blue, lavender, or platinum, and they often retain some of their white coat from kittenhood.

How Big Do Ragamuffins Get?

Ragamuffins are a medium-to large-sized cat. They have sturdy and strong bodies, though this doesn’t prevent them from moving with elegance and ease. Their large, rounded paws and extra fat padding are features that make them all the more lovable.


Ragamuffins are medium- to large-sized cats that can often lean toward the larger end of the spectrum. While size differs from cat to cat, males are generally larger than females. Their big-boned frames and extra fat padding on their tummies also contribute to their appearance as a larger cat. Of course, their long coats also play a role, often making them appear bigger in size than they might actually be.


A Ragamuffin’s weight is often associated with gender. Female Ragamuffins can weigh anywhere from 8-15 pounds, whereas males can weigh up to 20 pounds.

Ragamuffin Personality Traits

Ragamuffins are among the “gentle giants” of the cat world. They are cuddly companions with a sweet nature that is sure to melt the hearts of anyone who adopts them into their home. These cats are relaxed and calm, making them a fitting addition to  families with children.


The Ragamuffin is a generally mild-tempered and lovable cat that adores attention and love. While one might associate the Ragamuffin's cuddly personality with a tendency to sleep and laze around, these cats are actually quite active and love to play. All you have to do is pull out some toys and watch your Ragamuffin spring into action.

These cats are not strong hunters, so it’s unlikely that your Ragamuffin will bring you a “gift” of sorts, as other breeds may do. Their lack of hunting skills makes them ill-equipped for the outside world, so they are best kept as indoor cats. You  should always accompany your Ragamuffin outside, or even better, train them to walk safely on a leash so that they’re never left to their own devices for too long.  

Ragamuffin Common Health Issues

Ragamuffins are considered a generally healthy breed, but some may be prone to obesity from overeating, so it’s important to encourage exercise and play, control food portions, and adhere to an individual cat’s caloric needs. Like the Ragdoll, the Ragamuffin can also be at a higher risk for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) and polycystic kidney disease (PKD). As for all breeds, a Ragamuffin's oral health is connected to their general health, so at-home tooth brushing and regular dental cleanings at the veterinarian are important to keep your kitty's smile bright and help support their overall well-being.

How To Take Care of a Ragamuffin Cat

Taking care of a Ragamuffin, like all cats, requires time and attention. Learning about your Ragamuffin's specific needs for grooming, nutrition, and oral health will go a long way toward helping you support their overall well-being for years to come.  


Surprisingly, Ragamuffins do not need to be brushed every day despite their long coats. Ragamuffin coats need only to be brushed once a week, simply to remove anything that might’ve gotten stuck in their coats. Brushing these cats is quite a painless process because their coats are tangle resistant.

Periodontal disease is a dental disease that affects all cats, so it’s necessary to brush your Ragamuffin’s teeth at least once a week to prevent problems. Other simple grooming tasks include trimming your cat's nails and removing discharge or debris from their eye area. It might also be necessary to clean their ears, but you should always consult your veterinarian on proper ear cleaning to avoid damaging their delicate inner ears.  


A Ragamuffin’s nutritional needs are very similar to any other cat breed. However, Ragamuffins have a tendency to overeat, which puts them at risk for obesity. It might be difficult to gauge whether your beloved Ragamuffin is overweight or not due to its already large size. The best way to ensure that your cat gets the proper amount of food it needs is to monitor its food intake. If you’re unsure of how much food your Ragamuffin should be eating, consult your veterinarian. The Association for Pet Obesity Prevention (APOP) also has great resources on feeding and managing your cat’s caloric needs.


Although their coats are long and lush, they are surprisingly  “tangle-resistant” and relatively low-maintenance cats when compared to other longhaired breeds. However, these cats are medium to high shedders, so regular brushing is a good idea to keep flying fur to a minimum around the house. 

Taking Care of Ragamuffin Kittens

Taking care of a Ragamuffin kitten is similar to the care you’d provide for any kitten. Scheduling wellness checkups and vaccinations with your veterinarian is a very important step when caring for your kitten. Ragamuffins take up to four years to fully mature and grow to their adult size. You’ll want to monitor your kitten’s different growth stages, which will help you get to know your kitten better and allow you to spot changes in their behavior or appearance more easily.

After your Ragamuffin kitten is weaned from their mother’s milk at around 8-10 weeks of age, it’s important to ensure that they get the nutrients they need with an age-appropriate diet to support their health and growth. When it comes to providing the right nutrients for your kitten, ask your veterinarian about proper diet, including how much and how often your kitten should eat.

You’ll also want to kitten-proof your home  to create a safe, welcoming environment for your tiny new Ragamuffin. This includes making sure that they cannot access the outdoors, where they could be at risk from predators or other dangers.

It's also a good idea to learn about at-home dental care for your new Ragamuffin kitten. Learning the best ways to properly brush and care for your cat's teeth and establishing other good oral health habits is much easier to do when your cat is young.

Ragamuffin Fun Facts

  • Terms of endearment. To match the Ragamuffin’s endearing personality, they were originally given the name “Liebling” which means “darling” in German.

  • Champions of the CFA. The Ragamuffin achieved registration status with the Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) in 2003, and Championship status in 2011.

  • Eyes of a different color. Their eye color also comes in all hues, though the Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) breed standard indicates that Ragamuffins with mink coat colors must have aqua eyes, and ones with sepia-toned coats should have yellow/gold to green eyes.

  • Ragamuffin cats are relatively rare in the world. Despite being such wonderful companions, there are a limited number of Ragamuffin breeders in the United States and Europe.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How Big Can Ragamuffin Cats Get? Ragamuffin Cats were bred to be large in size.  Female Ragamuffins can weigh up to 10-15 pounds, while males can be weigh up to 20 pounds

  • What Is The Personality of A Ragamuffin Cat Like? These cats are incredibly loving and easy-going. They relish any attention that they receive. While a very relaxed cat, their tendency to lounge shouldn’t be confused with laziness. Ragamuffins love to play and will happily get involved in any kind of fun.

  • How Long Do Ragamuffin Cats Live? Ragamuffins have quite a long lifespan. They make the best of companions because, with proper nutrition and care, they’ll be by your side for many years. Healthy Ragamuffins can live up to 20 years.


Ragamuffin Characteristics

12-18 years
Good with
Families, children, cats, cat-friendly dogs
Shedding amount
Medium to High
Affection level
Activity level
Tendency to vocalize
Exercise needs


Cat Fanciers' Association "About the Ragamuffin"

FETCH by WebMD "What to Know About A Ragamuffin"

Screen for health risks and diseases

Recommended by top vets with decades of experience

  • 21 breeds

  • 64 genetic health markers 

  • 50 genetic trait markers 

Learn More
Cat with detailed cat DNA report