14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (2023)

    RD.COM Cats

    14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (1)Wendy Rose GouldUpdated: Dec. 08, 2021

      The cute factor is out of control with these tiny cats. Consider yourself warned.

      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (2)IzaLysonArts/500px/Getty Images

      Cute, cuddly, and compact!

      All cats are pretty adorable in their own right. In fact, you’d be hard-pressed to find a kitty cat that didn’t elicit a drawn-out “awww!” But we’ve gone ahead and upped the ante with this list of small cat breeds that weigh no more than 10 pounds. Aside from being super cute and super tiny, each one has a distinct personality type that makes it perfect for families—maybe your family!—especially since some of them happen to be the most affectionate cat breeds around.

      From floofy and fluffy to short-haired and even hairless, these sweet kitties are sure to steal your heart.

      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (3)Viktor/Getty Images


      At an average of about five pounds—the weight of a half-gallon of milk—the Singapura is the smallest cat breed out there. A fully grown female often maxes out around four pounds, and males around six. This short-haired breed is known for its adorably large ears and eyes and a striped tabby pattern.

      (Video) Top 10 Domesticated Cat Breeds

      “Despite the Singapura’s small size, they’re excellent helpers who get along well with the whole family, including children and pets,” says veterinarian Katie Lytle, DVM, a channel manager for Wisdom Panel. She adds that Singapuras are also known for their friendliness and inquisitive nature. They have high energy and love to keep busy, and when it’s time to chill, they’re all about the cuddles. Are you a pup parent, too? These 12 cat breeds get along with dogs.

      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (4)eyfoto/Getty Images


      If plump, rounded kitties with loads of fur is your jam, the Napoleon cat (also known as the Minuet) is the way to go. Though their fluff might have you assume otherwise, these tiny felines weigh between five and nine pounds—no more than a standard can of paint! These cats do well with families, children, and even other pets. Considered a dwarf cat breed, it has been around since the late 1960s when breeder Joe Smith cross-bred a Munchkin and Persian. Read up on these 21 cat facts that are purr-fectly fascinating.

      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (5)Nazra Zahri/Getty Images


      The name’s a pretty clear giveaway of the miniature size of this small cat breed. These affectionate cuties, which weigh between six and nine pounds, have short legs and longer bodies akin to a dachshund or corgi shape. “Munchkins tend to play well with other cats and dogs, and they also like to stow away shiny objects if owners enjoy a game of hide-and-seek,” says Stacy Choczynski Johnson, DVM, a veterinarian and veterinary expert for Pumpkin Pet Insurance. But one word of warning: “Due to their [shape], they do not jump very high and owners need to beware of potential joint injuries.” Don’t miss these trusted tips to help your pet live longer.

      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (6)Angela Emanuelsson/EyeEm/Getty Images

      Cornish Rex

      The Cornish Rex is a small cat recognized for its strikingly beautiful, elegant appearance. Females are usually between five and eight pounds, while the boys weigh in between eight and 10. “These long, thin felines have big ears and a curl to their soft fur,” says Dr. Choczynski Johnson. “[Personality-wise], these cats are dog-like in that they are known for playing an occasional game of fetch. They also tend to be quick eaters with good appetites.” Check out these other black cat breeds you’ll want to adopt.

      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (7)CasarsaGuru/Getty Images

      Devon Rex

      Slightly smaller than their Cornish cousins, the Devon Rex weighs between five and seven pounds if female, and between seven and nine pounds if male. “Devons are intelligent, active cats who are known for their childlike looks and mischievous temperament to match,” says Dr. Lytle. “This small cat breed is great for families because they love being in a busy environment with children and other pets, and they don’t need much grooming.” She adds that they are quite social and crave a good cuddle session! If you’re a cat person, you’ll particularly appreciate these photos of cats making themselves comfortable just about anywhere.

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      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (8)Antagain/Getty Images

      American Curl

      About the size of a bag of sugar—and way sweeter if you ask us—the American Curl could easily take the crown for America’s Sweetheart. “This furry feline is known for its characteristic backward curling of the ears,” says Shawna Garner, DVM, lead veterinarian for FirstVet. “They have a wide array of color patterns and either short- or long-haired varieties, and adult weights average between five to eight pounds. These cats are also very playful and affectionate, and they love to cuddle.” Check out these 12 rare cat breeds you probably don’t know about.

      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (9)kiszon pascal/Getty Images

      Scottish Fold

      Break out the bagpipes and prepare yourself or a serious canoodling should you ever find yourself in the company of a Scottish Fold. Similar in appearance to the American Curl, this breed has tightly folded ears (hence, the name) and comes in numerous coats and colors. “Families love the Scottish Fold for their affectionate and gentle nature and their intelligence,” says Dr. Choczynski Johnson. For a good laugh, take a look at these45 hilarious cat memes.

      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (10)Luis Cagiao Photography/Getty Images


      Siamese kitties are known for being major talkers with bright blue eyes and a striking soft white, gray, and black coat. They’re on the larger end of the small cat spectrum, weighing between eight and 12 pounds for females and up to 15 pounds for males. If you wanted a particularly small Siamese cat, you’d need to specifically seek that out from a breeder.

      In addition to their beauty, Siamese are also very smart cats who are less ‘fraidy cat and more curious kitty. “You may see Siamese walking down the street with their families as they can be leash-trained as kittens,” says Dr. Choczynski Johnson. “Siamese fanciers will say that this breed has elegance and beauty greater than any other feline.” FYI, Siamese are one of the cat breeds that get stolen the most often.

      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (11)Cavan Images/Getty Images


      If the Balinese cat looks familiar to you, it’s because it’s related to the Siamese! There are a few key differences, though. First, they’re smaller at between five to 10 pounds. Second, they have longer fur coats that are quite silky and soft. Like the Siamese, however, they are very intelligent creatures who enjoy being social and affectionate. They’re also quite talkative and aren’t afraid to give you an earful when they have something to say, though less so than the Siamese. Learn which common cat “facts” are false.

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      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (12)~UserGI15613517/Getty Images

      Colorpoint Shorthair

      The Colorpoint Shorthair is part of the same cat breed family as the Siamese and Balinese. They, too, weigh in between five to 10 pounds. “This breed has the body shape, voice, and personality of a Siamese cat, but can be the colors of the domestic shorthair,” says Jeff Werber, DVM, veterinarian and Chief Veterinary Officer for AirVet. In fact, they come in 16 different colors! “I’ve had a few throughout the years, and they are wonderful cats that are quite inquisitive and curious.” They’ll play fetch, sit on your lap and purr, and remain loyal to their owners.

      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (13)Thomas Leirikh/Getty Images

      Dwelf Cat

      Weighing in at a mere four to six pounds and only seven inches in height, the hairless Dwelf cat is certainly one of the tiniest cat breeds out there. It’s a cross between a Munchkin, American Curl, and Sphynx—and to be honest, it looks every bit the part of all three. They’re known for being quite active, almost like a puppy, and they are quite social and interactive. Because it’s hairless, the Dwelf is also considered a hypoallergenic cat, making it ideal for families with allergies. It is important to note, however, that these cats can be predisposed to genetic issues, including fragility. They are also quite expensive at around $2,500 each. In case you were wondering, these are the most (and least) expensive dog breeds in the world.

      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (14)Andrea Ricordi, Italy/Getty Images

      Russian Blue

      The Russian Blue is a gentle, reserved feline that makes a wonderful addition to small households with older children and adults. They have a very unique look with their bluish-gray short coats and sparkling green eyes. While shy, they are devoted to their owners and are even known to greet you at the door. At between seven and 12 pounds, they are considered a small to medium cat breed. What makes them extra special is that they tend to live longer than other breeds; their average life span is between 15 and 20 years, and some have lived closer to 25. If you think you can handle the cuteness, check out these adorable cat breeds as kittens—and yes, the Russian Blue is in there!

      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (15)Mik122/Getty Images

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      The Snowshoe is also distantly related to the Siamese cat. Its name goes back to the very first litter, which was born with white feet; it is believed to be a mix between a Siamese and an American Shorthair. Today, they are born mostly white and then later in life develop their darker markings. Male snowshoes are between nine and 12 pounds, while females are smaller at between seven and 10.

      “Snowshoes are well-suited to family life, thanks to their playfulness and loyalty,” says Dr. Lytle. “For example, some snowshoes are known to be bossy and some shy. The breed is also known for its unique spectrum of personalities.” Snowshoes are generally active and intelligent, and they love being around people.

      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (16)Jesus Vivas Alacid/EyeEm/Getty Images


      Weighing between six and 12 pounds, the Sphynx is a small cat breed best known for its wrinkly, hairless body. While they do look a bit ferocious, their personality is the opposite. “The breed has been called the most dog-like of cat breeds because they tend to follow their owners around like a puppy and like to greet you at the door when you come home,” says Anthony Hall, DVM, a veterinarian with AirVet. “That said, these playful and curious cats also love to lounge and can keep themselves entertained, which makes them pretty low-maintenance.” Dr. Hall recommends these cats for families with older children and without other pets since they tend to prefer being the center of attention. Looking for more to love? On the opposite end of the spectrum, these are the large cat breeds that make the cutest pets.


      • Katie Lytle, DVM, veterinarian and channel manager for Wisdom Panel
      • Stacy Choczynski Johnson, DVM, a veterinarian and veterinary expert for Pumpkin Pet Insurance
      • Shawna Garner, DVM, lead veterinarian for FirstVet
      • Jeff Werber, DVM, veterinarian and Chief Veterinary Officer for AirVet
      • Anthony Hall, DVM, a veterinarian with AirVet

      Originally Published: February 08, 2021

      14 Best Small Cat Breeds for Every Family (17)

      Wendy Rose Gould

      Wendy Rose Gould is a Phoenix-based freelance lifestyle reporter who covers home, health, wellness, and travel-related topics for people and their pets. In addition to having two kitties of her own, Wendy loves all animals and is always game for meeting new floofs. She holds a journalism degree from the Franklin College Pulliam School of Journalism and has a second bachelor's degree in Philosophy. You can follow her on Instagram @wendyrgould.

      (Video) Rarest Cats That Exist


      What is the least cuddly cat breed? ›

      Some of the least affectionate breeds of cats include the American Wirehair, Korat, Singapura and Cymric. “The American Wirehair tends to be pretty reserved and quiet, which some would consider not particularly affectionate. The Korat is somewhat passive and can be spooked easily by loud noises.

      What is the most clingy cat? ›

      Top 10 Most Affectionate Cat Companions
      • Ragdoll.
      • Siamese.
      • Sphynx.
      • Scottish Fold.
      • Persian.
      • Burmese.
      • Birman.
      • Maine Coon.
      2 Apr 2019

      What is the least popular cat? ›

      Black cats seem to be the most common coat color and sadly also the least desirable at adoption time. In fact, black cats are half as likely to find a home than a cat of another color.

      What cat breeds can be left alone? ›

      Although they love quality time with their humans, independent cat breeds like Russian Blues or Persians are perfectly content to entertain themselves with toys and plenty of cat naps while you're away.

      Are there cats that stay tiny forever? ›


      Known as one of the smallest cat breeds in the world, the Singapura is half the size of the average cat. Possessing a kitten size throughout their lives, their bodies are petite and delicate and they usually don't weigh more than 5 pounds (yep, you heard that right!).

      What is a good starter cat? ›

      These are some of the best choices for someone looking to get their first cat.
      • Maine Coon. One of the largest of all the cat breeds, the Maine Coon is affectionate but not overly dependent. ...
      • Ragdoll. ...
      • Siamese. ...
      • Exotic Shorthair. ...
      • Scottish Fold. ...
      • Sphynx. ...
      • American Shorthair. ...
      • Adult rescue cat.
      18 Nov 2020

      How do I choose a cuddly cat? ›

      Look for a cat that enjoys playing calmly, but mostly seems to enjoy nap time with its owners. This also means you should look for a cat with a calm, approachable personality. If you choose a cat that seems skittish or scared, it is less likely that the cat will develop into a lap cat even over time.

      What is the sneakiest type of cat? ›

      Cats are known for being elusive and stealthy, but the southern tigrina takes those qualities to a new level. For decades, this South American feline has been hiding in plain sight, mistaken for a close relative called the tigrina or oncilla.

      What cat breeds bond with one person? ›

      Some breeds have the reputation of One Person Cats, such as the Chantilly/Tiffany, Manx, Ocicat, Siamese, Somali, and Turkish Angora. This isn't a purebred trait, though, since many people have told me about their seriously mixed breeds who attach themselves to one person.

      What is the most smart cat? ›

      Siamese cats are perhaps the most intelligent of them all. They are forever getting into mischief with their inquisitive nature making them explore every corner of the house. This breed may respond better than others to training and many owners report that their Siamese cats can do tricks.

      Are girl or boy cats better? ›

      The truth is that the sex of the cat really doesn't matter when it comes to choosing the purrfect pet for you. Although there are some behavioral differences between male and female cats as they grow from kittens to adults, a cat's genetics and environment play a bigger role in how well the two of you will bond.

      What is the most loved cat? ›

      Persian Cats

      Known for their gentle, laid-back personalities, sweet faces and round eyes, Persian cats are affectionate, quiet, beautiful creatures of habit, making them the most popular breed among cat fanciers. Persian cats are not only the most popular breed of cats, they've also been around the longest.

      What color cat is the calmest? ›

      White cats were considered to be more shy, lazy and calm, while tortoiseshell cats were more likely to be depicted as both more intolerant and more trainable.

      What is the cuddliest pet? ›

      These Are 10 of the Best!
      • Hamsters. Hamsters are naturally playful, but they're also extremely affectionate and love attention. ...
      • Ferrets. If you're allowed to own ferrets where you live, you're in for plenty of cuddles! ...
      • Guinea Pigs. ...
      • Lovebirds. ...
      • Hedgehogs. ...
      • Sugar Gliders. ...
      • Chinchillas. ...
      • Rabbits.
      20 May 2021

      Why do cats bond with only one person? ›

      Cats tend to favor one person over others even if they were well-socialized as kittens. Cats are expert communicators and gravitate towards people that they communicate well with. Look for communication cues from your cat, such as your cat approaching you in search of food or petting.

      How do cats choose their favorite person? ›

      According to a study done by the nutrition company, Canadae, they discovered that the person who makes the most effort is the favorite. People who communicate with their cat by getting to know their cues and motives are more attractive to their cat companions.

      Is it OK to keep just 1 cat? ›

      If you are just looking to get one cat, your future feline pet will not be severely deprived if you do not get another with it. A cat can live a happy life as the only cat in the house. At the same time, cats are more social than we may have at one time believed.

      Do cats get lonely if you only have one? ›

      However, domesticated cats have evolved to crave companionship, often forming strong bonds with humans and sometimes even other pets. So, do cats get lonely? Because of the attachments they form, the answer is yes; cats can feel lonely!

      What cat breed can be left alone for 8 hours? ›

      #1 Persian

      They don't like climbing as much as other breeds, love to bat at feathers, and prefer to speak with their eyes, instead of meowing. Moreover, Persians are good at entertaining themselves and don't mind when you leave them alone while at work.

      Whats the longest a cat can be left alone? ›

      Most felines will be perfectly content being left alone for up to 8 hours while you're at work. As long as fresh water is available, some cats can be left alone for up to 24 hours. However, longer or more frequent periods of time away, such as full days or nights away from home can be more disruptive.

      Is there a teacup cat? ›

      Teacup cats are cats who have been bred to be as small as possible. While most adult cats weigh around 9 to 10 pounds, teacup cats are bred to be about two-thirds that size, says Dr.

      Can cats be by themselves for 3 days? ›

      Leaving a cat alone for three days without someone dropping by is not a good idea. The reasons listed above apply in this case as well. If you have no other option, consider a boarding facility.

      What breed is Garfield? ›

      The Persian Tabby, the breed that both Garfield and Nermal are in the iconic comic strip, is a wonderful and loving breed of cat. They are an overall low maintenance cat who just loves to lay around and enjoy the company of their human owner, making them an excellent first pet option.

      What cat requires the most attention? ›

      Top 5 Affectionate Cat Breeds
      • Siamese. This well-known cat breed loves being the centre of attention and is extremely affectionate with its family, having plenty patience with children. ...
      • Persian. These cats are very popular for their long, soft fur and loyal, affectionate personality. ...
      • Sphynx. ...
      • Ragdoll. ...
      • Exotic Shorthair Cats.
      5 Jun 2018

      What breed of cat loves cuddles? ›

      1. Ragdoll. Ragdolls love being held so much, they get their name from their tendency to flop over in their owner's arms. True to their name, the ragdoll is known for relaxing in your arms, going limp much like a ragdoll when picked up.

      What is the friendliest and Cuddliest cat? ›

      Cat Cuddles: A Guide to the Most Affectionate Breeds
      • Scottish Fold. These cats often look like a stuffed animal ready to be snuggled. ...
      • Ragdoll. These long haired cats are named after their tendency to go limp when picked up. ...
      • Tonkinese. ...
      • Birman. ...
      • Kurilian Bobtail. ...
      • Burmese and Bombay.

      What is the best age cat to adopt? ›

      The ideal age is 12 weeks, nor be as healthy. Benefits: A Fresh Start: Kittens are a clean page for you to fill in the story. They haven't had a chance to develop neurosis or behavior problems.

      Are all cats cuddly? ›

      Remember, every cat's personality is different. Some kittens will be naturally cuddly and always want to snuggle in your lap and follow you from room to room. Others may be more independent but still desire pets when they're not adventuring.

      What cat does not scratch furniture? ›

      Ragdoll cat-

      And most of the time love to lie back and rest. They are lazy but they are very playful and love to be around their owner all the time. Due to their relaxed easy-going temperament, they are easy to train and do not often scratch furniture like other cats.

      What is the most peaceful cat? ›

      Ragdoll. Ragdolls are called Ragdolls for a reason: they're incredibly gentle and laidback, and will literally go floppy in your arms like a ragdoll. They're incredibly calm, and are considered some of the most docile cat breeds.

      Which is the No 1 cat in the world? ›

      #1: Ragdoll

      This large, longhaired cat with a plush coat is ranked No. 1 for the third year in a row. Ragdolls were first recognized as an official breed by CFA in 1998, and they come in 3 different patterns, all with piercing blue eyes and a calm disposition.

      How do u know if a cat likes u? ›

      Here are some common signs that your cat loves you:
      • Slow Blinking. Eyes are said to be the windows to the soul. ...
      • Headbutting. Your cat may bump their head against you or rub their cheeks against you to show affection. ...
      • Grooming. ...
      • Kneading. ...
      • Showing Their Belly. ...
      • Meowing. ...
      • Purring. ...
      • Greeting You at the Door.
      1 Feb 2022

      Do cats like to be picked up? ›

      Do cats like to be held as much as we like to hold them? If you do it correctly, the answer is yes. Many cats, despite the common and persistent myth that they are aloof, welcome affection from their people. In fact, petting and holding your cat helps build a loving relationship between the two of you.

      Why do cats lick you? ›

      Your cat is expressing her affection for you.

      Your cat's licking may be an affiliative behavior, which is a friendly, altruistic behavior. Mothers groom their kittens, and cats may groom one another, which is called allogrooming.


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