Ragdolls are not suitable for outdoors

by Jim
(Pamplona, Spain)

Just to mention that the Ragdoll Cat should not be let out to roam indiscriminately.

The reason being that it has quite a low-nervous temperament: it won’t defend itself against, or even run away from feisty cats or dogs.

They adjust easily to being walked on a leash.

These cats are wonderfully non-agressive and oblivious to danger.

A safely enclosed garden or balcony is the solution. Open windows or unscreened balconies are also warned against.


Hi Jim… thanks for the info. I have read that Ragdolls are not suitable for outdoors. I wasn’t sure if there was a certain amount of myth and legend involved and a lack of actually fact but it seems that you have personal experience, which makes it more believable.

Although I find it a bit difficult to comprehend how breeders have managed to breed into a cat a very distinctive personality. Cat coat colours and appearance – that I can understand as it is achieved by selective breeding. But if you selectively breed for appearance can you also selectively breed for specific character at the same time, without inbreeding. Or do all breeders inbreed their cats?

If you can breed for a specific character trait why aren’t all the breeders breeding for character and advertising on that basis? I would have thought that character outranks appearance or at least equals it but we hardly ever see cat breeds talked about in terms of character except the Ragdoll, Persian to a lesser extent (passive), wildcat hybrids such as the Savannah and Bengal (active) and Sphynx (intelligent).

There is a question mark too over whether it is wise to breed for character through inbreeding, which it seems must be the way it is achieved. Outcrosses are not permitted as I understand it.

I may have this completely wrong. In which case I apologise. Thanks again for sharing.

Outdoor cat problems

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Ragdolls are not suitable for outdoors

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Nov 08, 2010 on the ragdoll
by: Kathy W

The new kitten we purchased is half ragdoll and half bengal. Needless to say he has the beauty of a bengal and the sweet personality of the ragdoll. He does not defend himself against the other cats. Now he just runs. The 8 pawed cat we rescued from the outdoors cuffed him in the head and Im sure he had a slight concussion. All he did was sleep for about 3 weeks and he also walked with a limp. Well hes better now and all she has to do is look at him and he takes off running to hide. He is silver/white with black spots. Hes a very stunning cat. Some lady in our area is breeding these cats. I guess she started out with Bengals and somehow decided to add the ragdoll. Both parents of our kitten were Bengal ragdoll mixes. They were both the stunning silver color.

Nov 01, 2010 Character comes in shades
by: Finn Frode, Denmark

I personally believe that a cat’s character is mainly formed by the upbringing and socialisation it receives, but I have to admit that particular traits seems to go with many breeds. I witnessed that with my Somali Ivanhoe, who had a level of activity far beyond any other cat I have known before or after.

When talking about the personality or character of specific breeds however, we are not talking in absolutes, but rather something like shades of a desired quality. Supposing that all cats carry within them all character traits in varying degrees (e.g. from laid-back to hyperactive), then aiming for a particular quality can be done without excessive inbreeding as it will be found in different lines.

Finally a little thought experiment: For centuries the breeders of Persians have aimed for a relaxed lap cat, but wouldn’t it be possible to breed on the most active types and arrive at a more active type? A Persian with the active character of an Abyssinian maybe? It may not be able to jumpp as high, but still… 😉

Finn Frode avatar

Nov 01, 2010 Hi Phil
by: Michael

“I don’t really know, but if the gene pool is deep enough and still produces consistent character traits, perhaps there isn’t a problem?”

This is the key. If a gene pool is very wide there will be a wide range of characters. But to generate one character trait (as opposed to a rounded balanced character) must include breeding from a few foundation cats that had that character trait. That results in inbreeding it seems to me. But I am open to criticism.

Michael Avatar

Nov 01, 2010 Surely breed traits are not unusual?
by: Phil (London)

From everything I have read about different cat breeds, the Ragdoll personality seems to be a feature that’s valued and promoted just as highly as its appearance – hence the name! I think Burmese are recommended as indoor-only cats for similar reasons, i.e., their obliviousness to danger…

However, how this impacts on in-breeding issues within breeding programmes, I don’t really know, but if the gene pool is deep enough and still produces consistent character traits, perhaps there isn’t a problem? I know that I settled on Egyptian Maus as my ‘breed of choice’ partly due to their advertised character traits – intelligent, active, affectionate with their owners but wary of strangers, etc., all of which have proved accurate!

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