Cats have been loved as friends since ancient times. Egyptians admired their hunting skills and often buried them with their owners. Cats reached other parts of the world over time, and breeders created different breeds by choosing specific traits.
Small cat breeds have a fascinating history and evolution, with many bred for their unique look, size, and temperament.
Some cat breeds are ‘small’ because they weigh between 5 and 12 pounds as adults. But some are even smaller, weighing only 3 pounds. This is not based on their appearance but on their weight and size.
Small cats are usually friendly and fun. They love to play and cuddle with their owners. They are intelligent and sweet too.
1. Abyssinian Cats
Size: An adult Abyssinian cat typically measures between 8-10 inches in overall height and about 12-16 inches in length without the tail. They have an average weight between 8-12 lbs.
Abyssinians are elegant cats with slim bodies, long legs, and almond eyes. They have short, fine coats in different colors, like blue, fawn, red, and ruddy.
These cats are intelligent, curious, and active. They like to explore and play with their owners.
Abyssinians need regular grooming to keep their coat shiny and smooth. A weekly brush is enough.
These cats are energetic and need a lot of exercise, so toys and playtime are essential. They also need regular vet visits and shots to stay healthy.
Abyssinians like an environment that suits their curiosity and activity level. They love to climb and jump, so they need cat trees or shelves to explore. They also enjoy interactive toys and puzzles to challenge their minds.
They are social cats and don’t like being alone for too long. They may like having another cat as a friend.
2. American Curl
Size: American Curl cats are small to medium-sized cats. A fully grown American Curl cat typically weighs between 5-10 pounds and ranges in height anywhere from about 8-10 inches tall.
With their distinct curled ears, American Curls are unique and charming cats. They have medium-sized, muscular body and a short or long coat.
They are friendly, affectionate, and adaptable cats that make great family pets.
Their coat length determines their care needs. Short-haired Curls need weekly brushing, while long-haired ones need daily grooming.
Their ears also need regular cleaning because of their shape. They need mental and physical stimulation through play and interaction to keep them happy and healthy.
American Curls love being with their family and joining in activities. They need toys and playtime for their well-being.
Size: Balinese cats are a small to medium-sized breed. They can grow to be about 1.5 feet long, with a one foot-long tail. They typically weigh between 4-10 pounds.
Balinese cats have long, silky hair and bright blue eyes. They look like Siamese cats with flowing coats.
They are slim, strong, and graceful. Balinese cats are intelligent, loving, and talkative. They make great companions for people who like lively cats.
Balinese cats don’t shed much but need regular brushing to avoid mats and hairballs.
They should also get routine vet care, shots, and teeth cleaning. They must stay active and engaged with toys, games, and people.
Balinese cats love to interact and join in activities. They want to spend time with their owners and have fun.
They need toys, puzzles, and playtime to keep their minds and bodies busy.
Size: They typically weigh between 8-12 pounds and range in height anywhere from about 8-10 inches tall
Burmese cats are a friendly and lively breed. They have short, shiny coats and a strong body.
Their eyes are big and expressive, and their face is round and sweet. They love to be around people and get attention.
They don’t need much grooming, just a brush once a week. They need regular vet visits, shots, and teeth cleaning.
Burmese cats are very social and cuddly. They want a home where they can play and interact with their owners. They like toys and games to keep them happy and healthy.
5. Cornish Rex
Size: They usually weigh between 6 and 10 pounds and range in height anywhere from about 8-12 inches tall
The Cornish Rex is a curly-coated, slender cat with large ears and high cheekbones. They are intelligent, playful, and loving.
They need little grooming but may need baths to prevent oily skin. They also need regular vet care and dental care. They enjoy playing and interacting with their owners.
Cornish Rex cats are very social and need attention and affection. They like toys, puzzles, and playtime to keep them happy and stimulated.
6. Devon Rex
Devon Rexes are small, muscular cats with wavy coats and big ears resembling bats. They look mischievous and love to play, cuddle, and learn.
Their coats are easy to care for, with a brush once a week. Sometimes they need a bath because their skin can get oily.
They also need regular visits to the vet, shots, and teeth cleaning to stay healthy. They like to have fun and need things to do and people to play with.
Devon Rexes are very friendly and social cats. They want to be with their owners and need lots of love. They enjoy toys, puzzles, and games to keep their minds busy and happy.
Size: They usually weigh between 4 and 9 pounds and range in height anywhere from about 5-7 inches tall
Their coat can be short or long, and they need different amounts of brushing. Short-haired Munchkins must be brushed once a week, and long-haired ones need it daily.
Munchkin cats love their owners and want to spend time with them. They need things to play with and puzzles to solve to make them happy.
They have trouble reaching high places because of their short legs, so they need their litter box and food and water bowls to be easy to reach.
8. Russian Blue
Size: They usually weigh between 7 and 15 pounds and range in height anywhere from about 8-10 inches tall
You might like the Russian Blue if you love blue-gray cats with green eyes. This breed is medium-sized and muscular, with a sleek coat and a regal look. They are also friendly and affectionate with their owners.
You don’t need to groom them much; brush them once a week. But you do need to take them to the vet regularly for check-ups, shots, and teeth cleaning.
And it would be best if you kept them entertained with toys, puzzles, and playtime. They are brilliant and social cats who need much attention and love.
Russian Blue cats are great companions for people who can provide them with a stimulating and interactive home.
9. Scottish Fold
Size: They usually weigh between 6 and 13 pounds and range in height anywhere from about 8-10 inches tall
You might like the Scottish Fold if you love cats with folded ears. This breed has a cute and round look. They are also very friendly and cuddly.
Scottish Fold cats don’t need much grooming. You can brush them once a week. You need to clean their teeth and give them shots. And it would be best if you kept them active and happy with games and toys.
Scottish Fold cats want to be with you and join in what you do. They like to play with toys, puzzles, and you. These intelligent cats get bored quickly, so make sure they have fun things to do.
Size: They usually weigh between 8 and 15 pounds and range in height anywhere from about 8-10 inches tall
They have an easy-to-care coat that needs little grooming, just weekly brushing.
Siamese cats love to be with their owners and join in activities.
Choosing the Right Small Cat Breed: Factors to Consider
Think about your lifestyle and living space before choosing a small cat breed. Some breeds, like the Russian Blue or Siamese, can adapt well to small apartments. Others, like the Burmese or Scottish Fold, are friendly and pleasant with kids and pets.
Some people have allergies to cats. If you do, look for a hypoallergenic breed that sheds less, like the Balinese or Devon Rex. Also, learn about the health issues of the breed you like and ensure you can take good care of them.
Some small cat breeds need more grooming than others. Do you have enough time and money for grooming? Species like the American Curl or Munchkin have unique features that need more care, while breeds like the Russian Blue or Siamese are easy to groom.
Some breeds get along better with others. If you have kids or pets, look for a compatible breed. For example, the Abyssinian or Scottish Fold may enjoy their company, while others may want a calm environment.
Adoption vs. Buying: Understanding the Difference
You can find many small cats for adoption in animal shelters and rescue organizations. Make sure you can take good care of it.
You can also buy a small cat breed from a breeder. They may have kittens with specific traits, such as looks or personality. But buying from a breeder can cost more than adopting. And you need to check the breeder’s reputation and ethics.
FAQs: Small Cat Breeds
Can I get a small cat if I have allergies?
No cat is hypoallergenic, but some small cats may cause fewer allergic reactions than others.
For example, the Cornish and Devon Rex have short, curly fur that sheds less.
The Sphynx has no hair at all and also has less dander and saliva on its skin.
But remember that these cats still need regular grooming and bathing to stay healthy and clean.
How long do small cats live?
Many things affect how long a cat lives, such as genes, health, food, and environment.
Generally, smaller cats live longer than bigger ones because they strain less on their organs and joints.
Some long-lived small cats are the Siamese, the Burmese, and the Abyssinian.
These cats can live up to 15 to 20 years or more with reasonable care and love.
Is it easy to care for a small cat?
Small cats have some benefits when it comes to care and maintenance.
They need less space, food, and litter than bigger cats and are easier to travel with.
But they also have some special needs that you must pay attention to. For example, some small cats are very active and playful, and they need a lot of toys, fun, and exercise to avoid boredom and obesity.
Others are very loving and social; they need a lot of human contact and friendship to avoid loneliness and sadness.
How do small cats get along with other pets?
If you introduce and socialize them well from a young age, small cats can be friendly and adaptable to other pets. Some small cats that are especially good at this are the Singapura, the Munchkin, and the American Curl.
They are curious, outgoing, and tolerant of other animals, and they can bond with them strongly.
But always watch your pets when they are together, and give them their spaces and resources to prevent fights.
What special care do small cats need?
Small cats have some special care needs that are different from bigger cats.
- The Singapura is the world’s smallest cat breed, weighing between 4 to 8 pounds. It has a delicate and petite body that needs extra warmth and safety.
- The Munchkin has short legs because of a genetic mutation. It can’t jump high and may have joint problems later in life.
- The Cornish Rex has a very short, curly coat that sheds less than other cats. It has a high metabolism and needs more food than average to keep warm.
- The Abyssinian has a slender and athletic body that loves to climb and explore. Staying happy and healthy requires a lot of mental and physical activity.
- The Sphynx is a hairless cat breed that produces fewer allergens than other cats. It needs regular bathing and moisturizing to keep its skin clean and hydrated.
People have loved cats for a long time because they are unique and friendly.
Small cat breeds are different in how they look and act. They all need different kinds of care to be healthy and happy.
You should know about each breed’s features, needs, and health problems before you get a cat.
You should also consider your situation, like how you live if you have allergies, how much time you can spend on grooming, and if you have other pets. You should give it a good home no matter how big or small your cat is.
Getting a cat is a big decision that you should not take lightly. You should adopt or buy a cat responsibly. These small cat breeds can make you happy and be your best friend.
Small cats are easy to care for and manage, regardless of breed. They can get along with other pets if you introduce and socialize them well. These cats are small but lively.
They want a lot of attention, fun, and love from you. So make sure you can give them what they need. That way, you and your small cat will have a happy and rewarding bond.