Ragdolls adore their humans. They run to greet you at the door, follow you from room to room, flop on you, sleep with you, and love you. They are gentle, carefully avoid scratching people, and are good with children, the elderly, and dogs. Ragdolls tend to be floor cats, not jumpers. They feel that humans prefer purrs to yowls, and keep their voices softly musical.
Ragdolls are considerate of humans’ busy schedules, so they bathe and groom their moderately long, silky coats themselves. They should be groomed with a steel comb as a part of cuddling (“one hand stroke, one comb stroke; one hand stroke, one comb stroke…”), but most never need it. They shed very little, rarely have hairballs, are well behaved, and eager to please.
There are four patterns: bi-color, van, mitted and pointed. Patterns come in eight colors: seal, blue, chocolate, lilac, red, cream, fawn and cinnamon. Points may be solid, lynx, or tortie. CFA accepts bi-colors and vans for showing; mitteds and pointeds are registered.
Pointed Ragdolls have the classic, Siamese-type markings. The mitteds look like they went wading in whipped cream and sneaked a sip: their chins are soft, fluffy white, and so are their mittens and boots. Bi- colors look like they went swimming in whipped cream and dunked their faces in for a deep drink. All four legs, their underbodies, chest, and an upside-down “V” marking on their faces are white, and they may have a splash or two of white on their backs. Only their tails, ears, and the outer part of their masks show the darker markings. Vans look like they nearly drowned in whipped cream. Only the top of the mask, ears, and tail, and perhaps a few spots on the body, show darker markings.
Ragdolls were developed in the 1960’s by Ann Baker; a breeder in California. She bred Josephine, a loving, gentle, longhaired white female carrying Siamese markings, to other longhaired cats carrying Siamese markings. Her original stock consisted of sturdy, free-roaming cats. By selecting individuals with the look she wanted for her breeding program, she created the type standard for the Ragdoll.