Ragdolls have a semi-long coat, which varies in length and density according to season. The coat texture is silky, soft, and plush, with some undercoat. They should be brushed regularly, once a week or more, to ensure good hygiene and proper coat care. Most Ragdolls enjoy the brushing and time with their family. It’s important to brush down to the skin and not just superficially over the top of the hair. A good stainless steel or “Greyhound” comb is best for getting all the way through the coat. Ragdolls can be taught from an early age to tolerate, and even enjoy, bathing and blow-drying.
Nails should be trimmed at least once a month. We like to do it every few weeks. Akela Ragdolls or your veterinarian can teach how to properly clip their claws.
For a long and healthy life, it is important to keep your Ragdoll’s teeth free from plaque build-up with your annual veterinarian visit.
It is important not to allow your Ragdoll to become obese. This can lead to serious health issues, such as diabetes. See “Activity Level” for information on how to determine optimal body condition for your Ragdoll.
As with all cats, it is important to give your cat fresh, clean water daily so they don’t hesitate to drink or flowing water. Water containers can be non-tipping bowls, towers or fountains in plastic, glass, ceramic or stainless steel. If you worry about your cat drinking enough water each day, here's a tip from some cat behaviorists - place the water bowl at least three feet away from any food. Cats’ noses are sensitive and an overwhelming smell of food may cause them to drink less. Ragdolls love filtered drinking fountains that can also be used in place of a water bowl.
Ragdolls from reputable breeders are generally a healthy, hearty breed. A high-quality diet and annual vet check-ups are paramount for maintaining good health and longevity.
Ragdolls have the great fortune to have a DNA test for HCM (Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy, a heart disease). HCM causes abnormal thickening of the heart and is the most common cause of heart disease in cats.
All of our cats have been genetically tested for this and have been cleared.
Ann Baker of Riverside, California developed the Ragdoll breed in the early 1960s. A pure white longhaired cat named Josephine is believed to be the matriarch of the breed along with a seal point mitted male named Daddy Warbucks and a solid black cat named Blackie. Daddy Warbucks was bred to a daughter of Josephine named Buckwheat and her half-sister, Fugianna. These cats are the foundation of the Ragdoll breed.
Ann insisted Josephine's genes were altered at a nearby medical center where she was taken after being hit by a car. Litters born after her return from the hospital had the limp, loving personalities Ragdolls are known to exhibit, while those born prior to her hospitalization did not display the same traits.
Baker's breeding program consisted of a handful of breeders contracted as franchises under her guidance. As time went on, Baker became more eccentric and breeders broke away from her so they could continue to develop the highly affectionate and consistently patterned cats. Denny and Laura Dayton were among the breeders who distanced themselves from Baker and went on to play a major role in making the Ragdoll into a legitimate breed recognized by all the major registries. In June 1979, when TICA began, the Ragdoll was accepted for championship competition.