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Prettiest Cat Breeds in the World

 
By Josie F. Turner, Journalist specialized in Animal Welfare. October 1, 2020
Prettiest Cat Breeds in the World

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The first thing we need to say is that all cats are beautiful. They are nature's creatures which have a long and storied history with humans. The fact they are so pretty is only one of the reasons why we love them so much, but it is also one of the most striking. Beautiful big cats in the wild such as tigers and panthers have their own kind of beauty, but are not suited to living in the home. Domestic cats are smaller versions with equally beautiful features, but which cause a little less havoc in the home.

With AnimalWised, we bring you our list of the 10 prettiest cat breeds with photos so you can see for yourself why they are considered the most beautiful. We also provide a little information about each cat breed in case you consider adopting one for yourself.

You may also be interested in: What are the Oldest Cat Breeds in the World?

What makes a pretty cat so beautiful?

Although some people may not like cats as animals or pets, it is undoubtable they are adorable animals. Their facial shape, wide eyes, characterful ears and beautiful coats mean they are a pretty pet to look at.

The origins of the domestic cat are difficult to know, but we can say the process of domestication began thousands of years ago. There is even some evidence to suggest that cats domesticated themselves. This means they would have approached human settlements and allowed themselves to interact with them in exchange for food, shelter and even affection.

If cat's weren't so pretty, it is unlikely human populations would have tolerated them as much. When we look at a kitten's face, we see in them a tenderness not unlike looking at a human baby.

Some cat breeds are considered even more beautiful than others. Here is our list of the prettiest cat breeds:

  1. Russian Blue
  2. Abyssinian
  3. Siamese
  4. Bombay
  5. Egyptian Mau
  6. Persian
  7. Bengal
  8. Maine Coon
  9. Munchkin
  10. Singapore

Below we will go into more detail about each of these pretty cat breeds with photos and videos of each. If you want to know more, take a look at our list of the most beautiful animals in the world.

1. Russian Blue cat

One of the most a striking coat colors is gray, as can be seen in various cat breed types with gray fur. Perhaps the most well-known is the Russian Blue cat, so-called due to the blue hue which can sometimes be seen within the gray pigment. Although most characterized by this striking coat, their beautiful eyes with emerald green tones make them all the more charming.

After their initial discovery, the Russian Blue was exported to other countries such as the United Kingdom and United States of America. There there were crossed with other cat breeds. These cats turned into the Russian Blue breed we know now with their large pointed ears and lavender paw pads. They are a sleek and elegant cat which is highly prized globally.

While these physical characteristics make them one of the prettiest cat breeds in the world, they are much more than good looking. They are very intelligent and highly affectionate with their family, although they also have an independent streak. Strong bonds require lots of attention and returning the affection you receive.

Prettiest Cat Breeds in the World - 1. Russian Blue cat

2. Abyssinian cat

There are various hypotheses about where the Abyssinian cat first appeared. The greatest consensus points to its origin being in Ethiopa, previously known in ancient times as Abyssinia. This cat is one of the oldest cat breeds in the world, giving them plenty of time to spread further afield to Europe and beyond.

Slim and slender of body, the Abyssinian's lithe frame belie their strong musculature. Thanks to these features, they are not only very pretty, but agile and very active. Their soft coat has brown tones and they have a triangular shaped head with almond shaped eyes and large ears. They have a distinctive wild look, resembling in particular the cougar. We often find the cats we consider most beautiful are those which closely resemble their wild cousins.

Unlike most domestic cats, the Abyssinian is seen as very independent. However, they still love to receive plenty of affection when in the mood. They are also quite childish and playful, seeking out games at all times of the day and night. Guardians of Abyssinian cats need to provide plenty of mental stimulation to maintain their well-being. This is why finding games to keep your cat entertained can be very helpful.

Prettiest Cat Breeds in the World - 2. Abyssinian cat

3. Siamese cat

Another of the most playful cat breeds, as well as being one of the prettiest, is the Siamese cat. This breed first appeared in present-day Thailand and were originally called Thai cats. Being such an old cat breed has meant there have been various crossings over the years, resulting in two distinct types of Siamese cat: Traditional and Modern.

These cats have a very streamlined body with a silky coat. They are one of the cat breed types which have a colorpoint coat, meaning they have mainly white fur on the body and darker patches of fur on the face and extremities. This cat coat pattern is certainly one of prettiest, especially since it is not as common as others.

Siamese cats are well- regarded for their beauty and make many appearances in cat shows across the world. Just because they are beautiful, does not mean they aren-t also very playful, agile and affectionate. They will need lots of attention otherwise they may become fearful or even destructive. As with any type of cat, they need engagement and are not only there to be looked at.

Prettiest Cat Breeds in the World - 3. Siamese cat

4. Bombay cat

The Bombay cat breed originated in 1976 in the United States of America, when breeder Nikki Horner wanted to create a domestic cat similar in appearance to a black panther. To do this, she made crosses between a Burmese cat and a short-haired black male, eventually producing the first Bombay cat. All Bombay cats are black and share certain charcateristics of black cats.

Why the cat is so pretty has a lot to do with their resemblance to a wild panther. Apart from their short jet black coat, their golden eyes are large and striking. They also have a very muscular body which adds to their wild appearance.

Most domestic cats need plenty of attention. However, the Bombay breed demands more than the average. They constantly want love and care which they will happily reciprocate, but it means we cannot leave them alone for extended periods of time. Although they stand out for being very sociable and loyal, they also tend towards laziness and can be the perfect pet for those with plenty of time, but not necessarily very active.

5. Egyptian Mau

Although the Abyssinian has a ticked coat, the Egyptian Mau is one of the first to display a more traditional type of tabby coat. This coat is light, usually with brown or gray tones. The spotted tabby pattern has lots of dark spots which remind us of a wild cat. This is why they are one of the cat breeds which are thought to look like leopards. This pattern makes them one of the prettiest cat breeds, but their genetic also give a rare feature of having longer back limbs than forelimbs.

The origin of the Egyptian Mau is, perhaps unsurprisingly, ancient Egypt. During this time they were considered sacred animals and were protected by the rulers of the land. However, their beauty made them popular beyond Egypts borders and they are considered one of the earliest cats to lead to the domestic cat we know today.

Regarding their behavior, they are quite reserved and independent cats. However, this does not means they are standoffish. They are loving when they have the correct bonds with their family and it is also important to educate and train the Egyptian Mau, something which should be done with every cat. The more confidence they have, the more comfortable they will feel.

We can help strengthen the bond with your cat by finding out whether your cat trusts you.

Prettiest Cat Breeds in the World - 5. Egyptian Mau

6. Persian cat

Another of the most beautiful and pretty cats in the world is the Persian cat. Although the origin of the Persian is not very clear, most reliable sources claim they first appeared in Persia, modern-day Iran. They were later introduced to Europe, but their reach is truly worldwide and it would be tough to find a country without one.

Although all types of Persian cats are beautiful, they can be very distinct from each other. This is because peke-type Persian cats have genetically inherited a condition known as brachycephaly. This is a condition which malforms the respiratory structure of the cat, giving them a shortened soft palate and bulging eyes. The extent varies, but Traditional or doll-face Persians have a much more pronounced snout.

Some people look for peke-face Persians and believe they are the prettiest cat breed over all others. However, we need to be careful as brachycepahlic cats also suffer from serious genetic conditions. It causes the cat to wheeze when breathing as well as suffer serious eye problems.

They do have very beautiful long hair which needs regular brushing to maintain it. Our guide to caring for a Persian cat's coat will show you how it's done.

7. Bengal cat

Although their name implies they originate in India, it is believed the Bengal cat breed began in the USA. Their name comes from their similarity to a big cat such as a tiger, although they were bred to resemble a leopard. This was done by crossing an Egyptian Mau with a wild leopard cat.

The cat is relatively large and can weigh up to 8 kilograms, although smaller individuals do exist. Part of what makes them such a pretty cat is their distinctive tabby coat. They have a special type of spotted tabby pattern which has rosettes, a type of pattern more common in wild cats such as the leopard. They have a round head with yellow/green eyes and an elegant body shape.

If you are thinking of adopting a cat and want one which is cheerful, sociable and playful, the Bengal cat may be the ideal companion. They are great with children and other animals, but it is vital you provide the correct education and meet all of their needs.

To know more about this beautiful breed, take a look at our article on the origins of the Bengal cat.

8. Maine Coon

The largest on our list of pretty cat breeds, as well as one of the largest cats in the world, is the Mine Coon. They come from the state of Maine in America which is known for its predominantly rural territory. They have since spread throughout the world and have become a much sought after companion for all types of families.

Maine Coons are characterized by their abundant coat of long hair. Although they have long hair over all their body, it is particularly long on their chest, tail and ears, the latter of which have distinctive tufts. Their coloration can be almost anything, but they are often seen in a dark tabby pattern.

As for their character, the Maine Coon is cheerful and energetic. They love to play with their family and their attitude make them a great companion animal. They will always appreciate love and attention from their loved ones.

9. Munchkin cat

Next on our list of the prettiest cats in the world, we go from one of the largest to one of the smallest feline breeds. The Munchkin is a miniature cat with short legs. They were first discovered in the USA and were the result of a genetic mutation.

What most characterizes the Munchkin cat is their elongated body and short limbs, reminding us a little of a Daschund's morphology. However, they are also known for their pretty face and cute expressions. This is in a large part to their bug bright eyes which show great tenderness and can be of practically any color.

As for the character of Munchkin cats, they are curious and very active. It is best for them to have lots of environmental enrichment to keep them entertained and avoid boredom. They are also very sociable cats and will need a lot of affection from their family. They are particularly good cats for children.

Prettiest Cat Breeds in the World - 9. Munchkin cat

10. Singapore cat

Although it is not entirely clear what is the origin of the Singapore cat, we know that it was first recognized in Asia several years ago. Specifically, this Asian cat breed was discovered in Singapore, hence their name.

Like the Munchkin, they are a very small cat breed. They do not normally exceed 3 kilos in weight. However, they have a relatively normal body to leg ratio and do not have the same shortened legs as the former breed. Their coat comes in various shades of brown and they have a cute, but small head. They are very pretty and can fit in your pocket, but they need lots of love and attention just like any cat.

The Singapore is very cheerful and playful, but they will let you know when they need their space. This is because they are quite independent and will not enjoy being crowded. We need to offer both necessary care and the space to find some calm. They are not ideal for hectic households.

Prettiest Cat Breeds in the World - 10. Singapore cat

The beauty of mixed-breed cats

Although we can point to the above pretty cat breeds and give you some common or likely characteristics, the beauty of mixed-breed cats is that they are unpredictable. They come in all shapes, sizes, coat patterns, ear length, colors and temperaments.

Mixed breeds are not only pretty in their own right, but adopting a mixed-breed cat will mean you share your life with a cat which generally has better health. Purebred cats often have genetic problems caused by limited bloodline, but mixed-breed cats have a better chance for resilience. Not only that, but adopting mixed-breed cats from shelters means you get to provide cats in need with homes and take the pressure off an overloaded system.

To know more, take a loot at our article on mixed-breed vs. purebred cats.

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