Many people get confused about the different types of ragdoll cats, as they come in so many colors and patterns! Along with their wonderful temperament, it is the distinctive coloring of ragdoll cats that so many people adore about this breed. So let’s clear up any confusion about the different types of ragdoll cats once and for all!
What Are The Different Types Of Ragdoll Cats?
Understanding the different ragdoll cat colors and patterns is the key to figuring out the key features of ragdoll cat types. The appearance of a ragdoll cat occurs as a result of the genes it inherits from its parents. The cat will always inherit a pair of solid coat color genes, and may also inherit other genes that create patterns and markings on the coat.
The basic coat colors of ragdoll cats are:
- Seal: Dark brown coat color with brown nose and paw pads.
- Chocolate: A lighter version of seal, ranging from light brown to dark, with a pink nose and paw pads.
- Blue: Steel-gray colored coat with matching nose and paw pads.
- Lilac: Pale gray with a pinkish tinge, and pink nose and paw pads.
- Red: A rich orange-red color, also known as flame ragdolls.
- Cream: Pale chocolate brown with a red tinge.
Ragdoll Cat Coat Pattern Types
There are also four different ragdoll cat patterns, which affect where the colored hair appears on the body. This will create specific darker and lighter areas, according to the type of pattern gene inherited from the parents:
- Bi-color patterning: All four paws and the entire underbody is white, and the cat has a white inverted ‘V’ on its face. Bi-color ragdolls sometimes also have one or two splashes of white on their backs.
- Van patterning: The lightest coat pattern, with darker areas only on the top of the face, ears, and tail.
- Mitted patterning: The front feet are white to below the knee, as are the hind legs to above the hocks. A white strip runs under the chin and along the belly, and the cat may also have a patch of white on its face.
- Colorpoint patterning: The classic pointed color pattern, with no white anywhere in the coat. The chest is normally cream and the coat gets gradually darker towards the extremities.
Ragdoll Coat Markings – Different Types Of Ragdoll Cats
As well as the base coat color and pattern of a ragdoll cat, its appearance can also be affected by variations in the coat markings. There are two different variations that can occur:
- Lynx: The darker areas of the coat have striped markings, like a tabby cat. Ragdoll cats with the lynx variation always have white ear lines, regardless of the color or pattern.
- Tortie: Tortoiseshell mottled markings on darker areas of the body. Only female cats will have the tortie coat marking variation.
Interestingly, on rare occasions you will find a cat that has both tortie and lynx marking variations! This ragdoll cat coat marking is sometimes referred to as torbie.
A cat that does not have any coat marking variations is described as solid colored. When a cat does have a marking variation, this is always more obvious on darker areas of the coat, such as the points and extremities.
Are There Any Other Different Types Of Ragdoll Cats?
The coat colors, markings, and pattern variations listed above are the only ones considered to be ‘pure’ by many ragdoll breed associations. Cats with this appearance will be permitted to enter ragdoll cat shows and competitions, and can be registered as purebred.
However, the breeding of ragdoll cats has, over the years, been influence by genes from other breeds and colors of cat. For example, you may come across a black ragdoll cat – these are beautiful cats, but unfortunately not considered to be purebred ragdoll cats.
Another unusual anomaly in this fascinating breed is the mink ragdoll cat bloodlines. These cats have a unique combination of genes that gives them a black base coat that is lightened to a brownish color. This coloring is thought to date back to a black Burmese cat called Buckwheat, used by the original breed of ragdoll cats as part of their founding bloodlines.
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How Can You Tell What Type Of Ragdoll Cat You Have?
Another unusual fact about ragdoll cats is that the kittens are always born white! They develop their coat color, along with any pattern or variation, as they age. The color of a ragdoll cats coat will also lighten or darken according to the season and average temperatures.
Some ragdoll cat breeders will aim to breed kittens with a specific set of colors, markings, and pattern variations, while others selectively breed for the friendly temperament of this majestic breed.
It is often impossible to predict what color a ragdoll kitten will be, unless the parents are known to carry a dominant gene for a specific coat color, pattern, or marking variation.
To ensure that a desired coat color characteristic is passed on to the next generation of kittens, genetic testing can be used to determine the likelihood of a cat passing on a specific gene. This enables cat breeders to match male and female cats together according to their genes, maximizing the likelihood that the desired coat color characteristic is passed on to the offspring.
Summary – Different Types Of Ragdoll Cats
So, as we have learned, when it comes to the different ragdoll coat color types there are many different variations! Your white ragdoll kitten could turn into a classic chocolate colorpoint, or something more complex like a lilac bi-color tortie. Although there are specific coat colors, patterns, and variations that considered to be acceptable by ragdoll breed societies, many breeders selectively breed for the lovable temperament of this adorable breed rather than the coat color.
We’d love to hear your thoughts on the different types of ragdoll cats! Do you have a ragdoll cat that has a particularly unusual set of coat colors and markings? Or perhaps you’ve got some questions about the best way to keep your ragdoll cats coat in peak condition? Leave a comment below and we’ll get back to you!