The Ragdoll Cat
The Ragdoll cat was first bred by a lady called Ann Baker from riverside, California in the 1960's. The ragdoll originated from a Birman look-alike pointed male and the female was called Josephine who was a longhaired white persian/angora type cat, however no one knows this for sure. Ann had been borrowing cats from her neighbours the Pennels to use in her black persian breeding program. Most of the Pennels cats were most likely to have been feral cats. At some point Josephine was hit by a car, for the first time Josephine allowed Mrs Pennel to touch her, therefore enabling Josephine to have veterinary treatment. After recovering Josephine was soon pregnant with a litter of kittens. Josephine had become more affectionate and had aquired a laid back nature, she also seemed to have lost her feral behaviour. Ann Baker was impressed with a kitten from this litter, a male seal point mitted, whom Ann took for her breeding program and named him" Daddy Warbucks ". Ann believed that the accident had caused Josephine to produce cats with laid back sweet dispositions. At some point later Ann obtained a daughter of Josephine, she was named Buckwheat. Buckwheat was similar to a burmese but not siamese in character. Ann later obtained Fugianna a mismarked bicolour. Buckwheat and Fugianna were bred to Daddy Warbucks and formed the foundation of the Ragdoll cat breed. Ann Baker trademarked the Ragdoll breed in her own cat registry the International Ragdoll Cat Association and enforced stringent standards on anyone wanting to breed or sell cats under that name. In 1975 Denny Dayton broke rank with the IRCA with the aim of gaining mainstream recognition for the Ragdoll. The first Ragdolls to come to Britain were from Denny Dayton's Cattery Blossom Time in March 1981 when Pat Brownswell and the late Lulu Rowley each imported a pair of Blossom Time Ragdolls. The first Ragdoll kittens were born in quarantine from Blossom Time Lad and Lass. By 1982, Lulu, who bred under the Petil-Lu prefix and Pat, who bred Patriarca Ragdolls had imported 12 Blossom Time Ragdolls and had begun to establishing the breed in Britain. However, it was not until March 1990 that the Ragdoll was recognised by the Governing Council Of the Cat Fancy (GCCF).
The Ragdoll is a large affectionate, semi-longhaired cat with captivating blue eyes. One of the largest breeds in the cat fancy, the Ragdoll gets along well with children and other pets, including dogs, often living up to its name as it gets carried around the house in a child's arms. These sturdy cats have no extreme features and blend easily in to the busy modern household.
The Ragdoll is a relaxed, happy cat and, like a child's ragdoll, many of these cats will go limp in your arms and flop like a stuffed doll when cuddled. Generally, the Ragdoll cat is a loving, quiet cat with a very laidback disposition. If you are looking for a very active cat or a talkative cat, a Ragdoll probably is not the breed for you, although kittens and young adults can be very rambunctious and most Ragdolls are always willing to play. Ragdolls are known for their tolerant attitudes with otheranimals and especially children and many will allow themselves to be dressed in doll clothes and carried around by youngsters with absolutely no resistance. They are often compared to dogs because of their friendliness and intelligence and have even been taught to play fetch.TraitsThe Ragdoll's medium length, silky coat has a soft rabbit-like texture. There is little shedding of the coat except in the spring and fall. Its soft texture means it stays on top of surfaces and is easy to pick-up with a hand or damp cloth. All pointed Ragdollshave beautiful blue eyes and come in 3 patterns: colorpoint, bicolor, mitted. The Ragdoll color pallet consists of seal, blue, chocolate, lilac, cinnamon, fawn, red and cream along with the tortoiseshell and lynx (or tabby) variations. Colorpoint Ragdolls have classic markings like the Siamese with no white anywhere on the body; mitted Ragdolls have white feet in the front looking like mittens and white to the hock on the backlegs looking like boots along with a possible white blaze on the face; bi-color Ragdolls have more white extending higher up the legs than on the mitteds, splashes of white on the back, a white underside and an inverted white V on the face.The Ragdoll is one of the largest of the cat breeds and takes up to 4 years to reach full maturity. Fully developed males weigh from 15-20 pounds with the proportionately smaller females weigh from 10-15 pounds. These gentle cats have long, substantial bodies with sturdy boning to match. They have a sweet expression emphasized by the large eyes full of love and devotion. Their features are composed of soft curves and transitions with nothing extreme or exaggerated.The Ragdoll's plush, silky coat requires little routine grooming, although it should be brushed or combed weekly with a steel comb to remove dead hair from their coats and separate any tangles. During shedding season, be sure to watch for some tangles under the armpits.
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