All Breeds Of Cat
Four Ragdoll Kittens - Photo copyright Helmi Flick.
All breeds of cat are listed on this website. And that includes what I call the fringe breeds. All you have to do it look left and up a bit and you will at the top of the navigation bar all you need for a comprehensive discussion on all the current breeds of cat (at 2010).
What is interesting is that there is not a definitive, final number of cat breeds. You would have thought that there might be, but no. This is because there is always a breeder somewhere thinking about developing a new cat breed. These days the only way to create a new cat breed is to make a hybrid - a cross between two or more existing breeds. Even that process has more or less run its course as the cat associations have put some pretty tight restrictions on the registering of new cat breeds.
This is probably because it is pretty crowded in the cat fancy! To say a cat breed is a cat breed it obviously has to be distinct from the other breeds and it has to be fundamentally healthy. Some breeds carry a potential for inherited, genetically transmitted, diseases. I have compiled a full list if you are interested.
It seems to me that it is getting harder and harder to squeeze a new cat breed into the already crowded cat breed market.
Gone are the days when rare recessive gene mutations popped up to create a strange looking cat that was then seized upon by a local cat breeder and turned into a cat breed. A classic example is the Devon Rex or any of the rex cats. They have thin, curly fur that makes them interesting looking. This mutation has popped up on numerous occasions.
What then happened - in the case of the rex cats - is that breeders further developed and expanded this area of the cat fancy (meaning the rex cats) to create several different breeds of curly haired cats. You can see how the number of breeds gradually develops until it reaches a limit.
Also on this site you can see that I have endeavoured to categorise all breeds of cat into types of cat. Cat breeds naturally fall into categories. A typically example is the exotic cat breeds. There is no definitive definition of "exotic cat breed" but such a cat breed is likely to be a wild cat hybrid which is a cross between a wildcat and a domestic cat. Wild cats can be mated with domestic cats and it happens naturally in the wild. The classic case of that is the Scottish wildcat mating with Scottish domestic cats.
When cat breeders arrange the mating of a wild cat with a domestic cat it can be a tricky process as the majority of wild cats are larger than the domestic cat and there are genetic considerations. The largest wild cat to be mated with a domestic cat is the serval. This cat can be the size of a very large dog - serval description. The hybrid cat produced is a Savannah cat.
If you are searching for all breeds of cat you might also be asking yourself what are best breeds of cat or what are the most popular breeds of cat.
I can answer the second question immediately as this site has run a long standing poll and I think it is pretty definitive. I hope it is. Here is the list of the top ten most popular breeds of cat:
So what about "the best breed of cat". Well you could say that the most popular breed of cat is the best breed of cat as people will, over time, discover what is best. The problem is that the best breed might not be the most popular breed. In this case it probably is and that cat breed is the Maine Coon.
However, just to put the cat amongst the pigeons, it may be that the best cat breed is not a cat breed at all but the random bred cat or mixed breed cat, the humble moggie - domestic cats.
By the way the phrase, "putting the cat amongst the pigeons" or variations on it comes from the days in India when the rich used the caracal to hunt as a past-time. The caracal is quite easy to tame and domesticate although it looks pretty fierce. When the caracal encounters pigeons on the ground it can kill a large number in the time it takes for them to fly away and when they do fly away the caracal can jump up to catch them. That is truely putting the cat amongst the pigeons.
I guess this is not worth saying but I will say it nonetheless; cat breeds are one species of cat, felis catus, a domesticated wild cat from Africa and/or Europe. There are 36 species of wildcat.
I hope this little chat about all breeds of cat provides a nice introduction to the subject. All you need to do now is to click on the first link at the top of the navbar and go from there - enjoy. You will see the best pictures of cats on the internet.