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30 Rare Cat Breeds You Didn’t Know Exist

30 Rare Cat Breeds You Didn’t Know Exist

Many cat lovers will know how Persian or American Shorthair cat looks, but how many of you would recognize a Peterbald or Sokoke?

These cats are rare cat breeds; we’ll now see which other cat breeds are considered rare treasures. Keep reading and check out our list of wonderful rare cat breeds.

Rare Cat Breeds

Rare cat breeds are cat breeds that are not commonly found or owned. These breeds may be less popular for various reasons, such as being recently developed, having a small breeding population, or having physical or behavioral traits that make them less suitable as pets for some people.

Many rare cat breeds have unique physical features or personalities that set them apart from more common breeds, which can make them attractive to cat lovers looking for something different. However, it is important to research and fully understand the care requirements of any breed before bringing one into your home, as they may have specific needs that are not common in more popular breeds.

Many cat lovers know what a Siamese cat with blue eyes, American Shorthair, or tabby looks like. However, other breeds like a Sokoke, Scottish fold, or Minskin are much less common! These are a few of the rarest cat breeds in the world. Cat breeds are so rare you may not have ever heard of them before.

Take a moment to get to know some of the rarest cat breeds in the world.

1. Serengeti

Serengeti cat sits and looks at the camera

The Serengeti cat is a breed of domestic cat that was developed to resemble the appearance of a wild African serval. These cats are known for their long legs, short hair, and distinctive spotted coat. They are generally friendly and social animals that can get along well with other pets and children.

2. Korat

cute Korat cat is lying on the table

One cat that is uncommon in the United States is the silvery-blue Korat. The Korat cat is uncommon outside of Thailand because the country has restrictions on breeding it.

This might be done so that the cat can only be received by members of the upper hierarchy or those given a Korat. While it may be challenging to locate a Korat breeder, this unusual cat is occasionally found at rescue shelters.

Ancient history bears witness to the influence of the Korat breed of cat. In the fourteenth century, these cats resided in monasteries in Thailand’s Kingdom of Siam.

It can be hard to find Korat breeders, but sometimes these beauties can be found in animal shelters.

3. Devon Rex

Devon Rex is sitting on the table

The Devon Rex is a breed of cat known for its unique physical appearance and playful personality, with its origin in England. They have short, wavy coat that is soft to the touch and are often described as having a “pixie” or “elfin” appearance due to their large ears. Devon Rexes are small to medium in size, with a slender, athletic build. They have large, pointed ears, big round eyes, and a short, upturned nose.

Regarding personality, Devon Rexes are known to be energetic, playful, and affectionate. They are intelligent and curious and are often described as being dog-like in their loyalty and devotion to their owners.

Devon Rexes are also known for their love of attention and affection and may become anxious or destructive if left alone for long periods of time. They do well in homes with people who can provide them with plenty of mental and physical stimulation and may not be the best choice for people who are away from home frequently or who prefer a more laid-back, independent cat.

RELATED: 6 Devon Rex Breeders Worth Checking

4. Norwegian Forest Cat

Norwegian Forest Cat is sitting and looking at the camera

The Norwegian Forest Cat, also known as the “Wegie,” is a large, semi-long-haired breed that is native to Norway. They are an ancient breed and were once considered the “house cat” of the Vikings.

In terms of appearance, Norwegian Forest Cats are known for their thick, lush coats, which are typically longer and denser on the underside, chest, and legs. They have a robust and sturdy build, with a medium to large size, and are generally quite muscular.

They have large, almond-shaped eyes, a triangular face, and a long, full tail. Norwegian Forest Cats come in a variety of colors and patterns, including solid, tabby, and bi-color.

Norwegian Forest Cats are generally friendly, intelligent, and independent. They are known for their love of climbing and playing and have a strong hunting instinct. They are generally good with children and other pets and can adapt well to a variety of living environments.

Norwegian Forest Cats are also known for their intelligence and independence and may be more aloof or reserved than some other breeds. They are generally low maintenance in terms of grooming but will need regular brushing to remove loose hair and prevent matting.

RELATED: Maine Coon vs Norwegian Forest Cat

5. Tonkinese Cat

Tonkinese Cat sitting on a wooden armchair

The Tonkinese is a cat known for its striking appearance and friendly, social personality. A cross between Siamese and Burmese is a medium-sized breed with a sturdy, muscular build and medium-length legs. They have a short, fine coat that is soft to the touch and come in a range of colors, including blue, champagne, lilac, and platinum. They have special blue eyes.

Tonkinese cats are known to be affectionate, intelligent, and social. They are generally very active and playful and enjoy being around people. They are known to be good with children and other pets and are generally not prone to aggression or shyness.

6. LaPerm

The LaPerm cat lies on a wooden base

The LaPerm is a breed of cat known for its distinctive curly coat and friendly, outgoing personality. They are a medium-sized breed with a slender, athletic build and medium-length legs. They have a soft, curly coat available in various colors and patterns, including solid, tabby, and tortoiseshell.

LaPerm cats are known to be friendly, outgoing, and social. LaPerm cats are also known for their intelligence and problem-solving abilities and may be more prone to mischief or misbehaving if they become bored or understimulated. They are generally easy to care for and do not require a lot of grooming.

7. American Bobtail

A cute American Bobtail kitten is lying on the floor and looking at the camera

The American Bobtail is a breed of cat known for its distinctive bobbed tail and friendly, outgoing personality. They are a medium to large-sized breed with a sturdy, muscular build and medium to long legs. They have a medium to long, dense coat that is available in a variety of colors and patterns, including solid, tabby, and tortoiseshell.

In terms of personality, American Bobtail cats are known to be friendly, outgoing, and social, according to CFA (Cat Fanciers Association). They are generally very affectionate and love attention from their owners, which makes them wonderful family pets. They are known to be good with children and other pets and are generally not prone to aggression or shyness.

8. Kurilian Bobtail

Kurilian Bobtail cat resting on a wooden surface

The Kurilian Bobtail is a super rare cat native to the Kuril Islands, a group of islands in the northern Pacific Ocean between Russia and Japan. They are a medium to large-sized breed, with a sturdy, muscular build and medium to long legs. They have a medium to long, dense coat that is available in a variety of colors and patterns, including solid, tabby, and tortoiseshell.

In terms of personality, Kurilian Bobtail cats are known to be intelligent, independent, and social. They are generally affectionate with their owners and good with children and other pets but may be more reserved with strangers. They are known to be good hunters and have a strong prey drive.

According to TICA, there are only 100 of them in North America.

9. Sokoke

Sokoke the cat is resting on a stone

The Sokoke is the rarest domestic breed of cat that is native to the Sokoke Forest region of Kenya. They are a medium-sized breed with a slender, athletic build and medium-length legs.

They have a short, sleek coat that is available in a variety of colors and patterns, including solid, tabby, and spotted. The shorthair cat with its striped gorgeous coat is a true sight to behold.

10. Minskin

Minskin's cat is lying on the armchair
Photo from: @no.towaris

The Minskin is also one of the rare cat breeds that were developed by breeding a hairless Sphynx with a Munchkin. They are a small to medium-sized breed with a slender, athletic build and short legs. They have a short, fine coat that is available in a variety of colors and patterns, including solid, tabby, and spotted.

In 2008, the Minskin was recognized as an official breed by the International Cat Association.

In terms of personality, Minskin cats are known to be friendly, social, and playful. They are generally affectionate with their owners and good with children and other pets and are not prone to aggression or shyness.

They are generally easy to care for and do not require a lot of grooming. However, they will need regular baths to remove excess oils from their skin and prevent acne.

11. Egyptian Mau

Egyptian Mau is lying on a leather chair

The Egyptian Mau is a breed of domestic cat that is believed to have originated in ancient Egypt. The breed is known for its distinctive spotted coat, which comes in various colors, including silver, bronze, smoke, and black.

Egyptian Maus are medium-sized exotic and outgoing cats with a lean and athletic build that definitely fall into a group of rare cat breeds. They have long legs and a relatively short tail and are known for their speed and agility. They are intelligent and affectionate cats that will adore cuddles and snuggles and can make excellent pets for those who are willing to devote the time and energy needed to care for them.

One thing they’re known for is their love to play with water.

RELATED: Why Do Cats Like Moving Water?

12. Turkish Van

Turkish Van lies on the pavement

The Turkish Van is a breed of domestic cat that is native to the region of Van, Turkey. The breed is known for its distinctive “van pattern” coat, white with colored markings on the head and tail. Turkish Vans are large, muscular cats with a strong, athletic build.

They have a long, thick coat that is typically soft and silky to the touch, and they are known for their love of water and swimming. Turkish Vans are intelligent, active cats that require plenty of stimulation and attention.

13. Chartreux Cat

A Chartreux Cat lies on a leather couch

The Chartreux is a breed of domestic cat that is believed to have originated in France. They are known for their dense, blue-gray coats and distinctive round heads. Chartreux cats are medium to large and have a sturdy, muscular build.

They are known for their intelligence and playful personalities and are often described as being very dog-like in their behavior. One of the most notable traits of the Chartreux breed is their soft, quiet voice.

Chartreux cats are known for making very little noise and are often referred to as the “silent hunters” due to their stealthy movements. Chartreux cats are generally very affectionate and make excellent companions.

14. Burmilla Cat

Burmilla Cat is sleeping on her pillow

The Burmilla is a breed of domestic cat that was developed in the United Kingdom. It is an accidental cross between a lilac Burmese and a Chinchilla Persian male cat from England. Burmillas have short to medium-length coat that is soft and silky to the touch and comes in various colors, including black, blue, chocolate, lilac, and red. They are known for their round flat faces and large, round eyes, which give them a sweet and expressive appearance.

Burmillas are generally friendly and affectionate cats known for their playful and curious personalities. They are intelligent and easy to train and can make excellent pets for those who are willing to devote the time and energy needed to care for them. These gorgies need to be kept indoors as they are rare treasures!

As a new breed founded in 1981, these cats are enormous fans of cuddles and will be wonderful family pets. Due to their coats, it will require brushing once a week.

15. Peterbald

cute Peterbald cat

The purebred Peterbald is a domestic cat developed in St. Petersburg, Russia, in the mid-1990s. It results from a cross between a Donskoy cat and an Oriental Shorthair.

Peterbalds have a distinctive appearance, with a long, slender body and a wedge-shaped head, on top of which are large ears. They are known for their hairless or nearly hairless grey coats, ranging from velvety soft to slightly wiry.

They come in a variety of colors and patterns, including solid, tabby, smoke, and point. Peterbalds are intelligent, active cats with a strong prey drive. Peterbalds are clever cats, so make sure to know how to handle them.

16. Ragamuffin

Ragamuffin cat sits on the pavement and looks around

The Ragamuffin is a domestic cat breed developed in the United States in the 1990s. It is a larger version of the Ragdoll breed, with a more substantial build and a longer coat.

Ragamuffins have a medium to long-length coat that is soft and silky to the touch and comes in a variety of colors and patterns, including solid, tabby, bicolor, and pointed. They are known for their friendly and affectionate personalities and are generally very social and outgoing.

Ragamuffins are intelligent and can be trained to do simple tricks. They are generally good with children and other pets and can make excellent family pets for those who are willing to devote the time and energy needed to care for them. Even though they have long hair, they’re not hard to groom since their hair is not prone to clumping and matting.

RELATED: Ragdoll Breeders: Meet 16 Breeding Stars

17. Burmese Cat

Burmese Cat looks around

The Burmese are another breed of domestic cat that originated in Thailand (formerly known as Burma). They definitely need to be on the list of rare cat breeds.

They are known for their sleek, glossy coats, which come in a variety of colors, including sable, champagne, blue, and platinum. Burmese cats are medium to large in size and have a muscular, athletic build. They are known for their intelligence and playful personalities and are often described as being very active and curious.

Burmese cats are generally friendly and affectionate and known for their social nature and love of attention from their owners.

RELATED: 5 Best Burmese Cat Breeders

18. Cornish Rex

Cornish Rex sits and looks ahead

The Cornish Rex is a breed of domestic cat that originated in Cornwall, United Kingdom, due to genetic mutation. They are known for their slender, athletic build and short, wavy coats, which come in various colors and patterns.

Cornish Rex cats are known for their intelligence and playful personalities and are generally very active and energetic. They are also known for their affectionate nature and their love of attention from their owners.

Cornish Rex cats are generally good with children and other pets and can make excellent family pets for those willing to devote the time and energy needed to care for them. They are also known to be good at adapting to various living environments, including apartments.

Check out our Cornish Rex breeders if you’re interested in purchasing this rare cat breed.

19. Turkish Angora

Turkish Angora lies on the grass

The Turkish Angora is a breed of domestic cat that is native to Turkey. They are known for their long, silky coats, which come in a variety of colors, including white, black, red, blue, and cream. Turkish Angoras are medium to large and have a slender, elegant build. They are known for their intelligence and playful personalities and are generally very active and energetic.

In terms of grooming, Turkish Angoras have a high-maintenance coat that requires regular grooming to maintain its condition.

It is recommended to brush their coat at least once a week to prevent tangles and mats from forming. They may also need to be groomed more frequently during shedding season. In addition, Turkish Angoras may need to have their nails trimmed regularly, and their ears cleaned as necessary to maintain good overall health

20. Abyssinian

Abyssinian is sitting on the couch

The Abyssinian is a breed of domestic cat that is believed to have originated in the Horn of Africa, specifically present-day Ethiopia. They are known for their short, fine coats, which come in various colors, including red, blue, fawn, and chocolate, green eyes, and love climbing high. Because of this, you may check out the 8 Best Tall Cat Trees.

Abyssinian cats are medium to large in size and have a slender, athletic build. They are known for their intelligence and playful personalities, and are generally very active and require a lot of mental exercise along with physical.

21. The American Wirehair

American Wirehair lying on the grass in the garden

The American Wirehair is a domestic cat breed developed in New York, United States, in the 1960s. They are known for their wiry, springy coats, which come in a variety of colors, including red, black, white, and tabby.

Their calm disposition is adorned with a friendly character. This rare cat breed is now quite a popular domestic cat breed.

22. Scottish Fold

Scottish Fold lies on wooden steps

The Scottish Fold is a breed of a domestic cat named for its distinctive folded ears, giving it a unique, owl-like appearance. The breed was developed in Scotland in the 1960s and was initially known as the “lop-eared cat.”

The breed’s folded ears result from a genetic mutation, and while they may be cute, they can also cause health problems for some cats if not correctly cared for. Scottish Fold cats are generally small to medium in size and have a round, stocky build.

Scottish Folds are known for their affectionate and social personalities and are generally very good with children and other pets. They are also known for their low-maintenance coats, which only require occasional grooming to maintain their condition.

RELATED: 8 Scottish Fold Breeders – Choosing A Good Breeder

23. Sphynx

Sphynx sits by the window

The Sphynx is another rare cat breed known for its hairless appearance. They are named after the ancient Egyptian sphinx because of their exotic look. Sphynx cats result from a genetic mutation that causes a lack of fur, and while they may be cute, they require special care to maintain their health. Sphynx cats are usually pricey due to their distinctive look.

Sphynx cats are generally medium to large in size and have a muscular, athletic build. They are known for their playful and energetic personalities and are usually very active and curious.

One of the most notable things about Sphynx cats is their unique appearance. They are entirely hairless or may have a fine, downy fur almost imperceptible to the touch.

They have large, prominent ears and big, expressive eyes, which give them a curious and alert appearance. Sphynx cats require special care to maintain their health, including regular bathing and moisturizing to protect their skin.

They may also be prone to certain health problems due to their lack of fur, so it is important to work closely with a veterinarian to ensure they receive the proper care they need.

RELATED: 13 Sphynx Cat Breeders – The Best Of The Best

24. Bombay

Bombay is sitting on the grass

The Bombay cat is a hybrid cat breed with characteristics of different domestic breeds that give them a unique, third look. Even though the aim was to produce cats that look like wild panthers, we can assure you that those don’t have wild blood.

The breeder, Nikki Horner, began her invention in 1953 by breeding a Grand Champion sable Burmese female to a black American Shorthair with rich eye color. After a long outcross and line-breeding selection process, Nikki produced a black cat that looked like no other. Sable Burmese and Black American Shorthairs are still allowable breed outcrosses.

The black leopard served as inspiration for the Bombay name, and often the Bombay cat is described as the “patent leather kid with the new penny eyes.

RELATED: Top 7 Bombay Cat Breeders

25. Selkirk Rex

Selkirk Rex cat scowling

The Selkirk Rex is a breed of domestic cat that was developed in Montana in the United States in the late 1980s. It is a cross between a domestic cat and a Rex breed, such as the Devon Rex or the Cornish Rex.

Selkirk Rex cats are known for their soft, curly coats, which come in a variety of colors and patterns. This rare cat breed has an almost smiling expression and big round eyes, and they just look like they want all the cuddles and attention.

26. Ashera

Ashera is lying on a red armchair

The Ashera is a relatively new cat breed that belongs to a group of rare cat breeds. Ashera was developed in the United States by the Lifestyle Pets company. It is a hybrid breed that is claimed to be a cross between an African Serval, an Asian Leopard Cat, and a domestic house cat.

Ashera cats are large in size and have a muscular, athletic build. They are known for their exotic appearance, which includes a spotted coat and long legs. However, there is some controversy surrounding the Ashera breed, as some experts have questioned the integrity of the breed’s claimed ancestry and the ethics of breeding hybrid cats.

Additionally, the high price tag for Ashera cats has also been criticized. It is essential to thoroughly research any breed of the cat before deciding to bring one into your home.

27. Havana Brown

Havana Brown is lying on a wooden chair

The Havana Brown is a unique domestic cat that is known for its distinctive brown coat and green eyes. The breed was developed in the United Kingdom in the 1950s and is a result of a cross between a Siamese cat and a domestic black cat.

Havana Browns are medium to large in size and have a slender, athletic build. They are known for their intelligence and playful personalities and are generally very active and energetic. Havana Browns are also known for their affectionate nature and their love of attention from their owners.

One of the most notable things about Havana Browns is their unique coat color. Why are brown cats rare? They are one of the few breeds of cats with a uniform, solid brown coat, ranging in shade from dark chocolate brown to a lighter, reddish-brown color. Their green eyes and brown coat give them a striking and elegant appearance.

28. Ocicat

cute Ocicat cat

The Ocicat is a breed of domestic cat that is known for its exotic, spotted coat and the resemblance to a wild cat. They are named after the ocelot, a wildcat native to Central and South America, due to their close similarity in appearance.

One of the most notable things about Ocicats is their unique coat pattern. They have a spotted coat similar to that of a wildcat, giving them an exotic and wild appearance. Ocicats come in a variety of colors, including tawny, chocolate, blue, cinnamon, and fawn.

RELATED: 6 Ocicat Breeders – The List Of The Worthy Ones

29. Singapura

Singapore walks on the bed

The Singapura is a rare cat breed that is native to Singapore. They are known for their small size and unique, ticked coat, which comes in a variety of colors, including brown, red, cream, and blue.

One of the most notable things about Singapura cats is their small size. They are one of the most miniature breeds of cats, with adults weighing between 4-8 pounds on average. They have a lean, athletic build and are known for their agility and grace.

30. Manx

Manx lies on the laminate

The Manx breed is a breed that was the 31st most popular in CFA registration numbers, originating on the Isle of Man, a small island located in the Irish Sea between England and Ireland.

They are known for their distinctive tailless appearance, resulting from a genetic mutation. Manx cats come in a variety of colors and patterns, including solid, tabby, calico, and bicolor.

Closing Thoughts

Many rare cat breeds are not as well known as some more popular breeds, such as the Siamese or the Persian. Some of these rare breeds may be more challenging to find, as they may have smaller breeding populations or may not be recognized by all cat breed registries. However, for those who are willing to put in the time and effort to find a rare breed cat, these breeds can make excellent pets and offer a unique and rewarding experience.

It is essential to carefully research any breed of the cat before making the decision to bring one into your home. This includes learning about their specific care needs, personality traits, and potential health issues.

It is also important to work with reputable breeders and to be prepared for the long-term commitment that comes with owning a cat. By taking the time to learn about and understand the needs of a rare breed cat, you can ensure that you can provide the best possible care for your new furry friend.

I wish you good luck in finding one rare cat breed for your home!

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