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10 Large Domestic Cat Breeds (with Pictures)

Nicole Cosgrove

There are dozens of breeds of cats, along with a virtually unlimited array of hybrid, cross, and moggy breeds. They range from short to long haired and from those that were bred for their rodent hunting prowess to felines that prefer to laze in any sun patch that they find. Some are vocal, while others never utter a word. Some cats love the lap of their human, and others are entirely aloof. Some feel like a member of the family, while others are more like a passing house guest.

There are also tiny cats; the Singapura will not usually weigh more than 5 pounds. But this list showcases giant domestic cat breeds, some of which are big enough to demand their own seat on the sofa!

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1. Maine Coon

Maine Coon
Image Credit: Michelleraponi, Pixabay

Weight:  8-18 lbs.
Lifespan:  13-14 years
Character:  Sweet, gentle, loving

The Maine Coon is an absolute giant of a cat. While they typically weigh up to 18 pounds, there are records of some Maine Coons achieving 30 pounds or more, which is twice as heavy as a small dog breed like the Pug.

Despite their mammoth size, the Maine Coon is known for being gentle, affectionate, and sweet. Often called a gentle giant, the breed is also referred to as being the dog of the cat world because they love spending time with their humans. They are also intelligent and like to be involved in what you’re doing.


2. Savannah

Savannah
Image Credit: Sean McGrath, Wikimedia Commons

Weight: 7-16 lbs.
Lifespan: 14-18 years
Character: Intelligent, energetic, wild

The Savannah is a hybrid breed, which means that they come from the cross of a domestic cat with a wild cat. In this case, the wild cat was that of the African serval, which is a wild cat with large ears. The domestic Savannah cat is classified according to the number of generations that they are from their wild cat ancestor, with F1 and F2 being the largest and the most likely to reach scale-tipping 30-pound weights.

The wild DNA in the Savannah means that the domestic cat can exhibit wild tendencies. They like to hunt, spend time outdoors, and can be quite aloof, although some do mix well in families and indoor households.


3. Norwegian Forest Cat

Norwegian Forest Cat
Image Credit: STVIOD, Pixabay

Weight: 8-18 lbs.
Lifespan: 14-16 years
Character: Friendly, loyal, outdoorsy

The Norwegian Forest Cat was first bred in Norway, when domestic cats were bred with wild forest cats. They are far enough away from the original wild cat to exhibit full domestic traits.

The modern Norwegian Forest Cat is family-orientated, although they do enjoy spending plenty of time outdoors. Besides being friendly, they love to play and tend to follow their owners around the house to complete tasks.


4. Ragdoll

Ragdoll
Image Credit: monicore, Pixabay

Weight:  8-18 lbs.
Lifespan: 12-15 years
Character: Gentle, friendly, calm

The Ragdoll is a unique breed in many ways, although it is unlikely that they were bred as a CIA experiment or that they contain alien DNA, as has been claimed. The breed is relatively new, only having been noticed in the 1990s and officially recognized in 2000.

This breed gets their name from their temperament. The Ragdoll cat is friendly and soft, and they will throw themselves into their owner’s arms like a ragdoll. Unfortunately, those distinctive eyes, which give the cat a unique look, can also cause the Ragdoll to be partially blind.


5. Siberian

Siberian
Image Credit::elena_demeshkova, Pixabay

Weight: 10-18 lbs.
Lifespan: 12-15 years
Character: Personable, fearless, calm

The Siberian is a large breed with a great deal of hair and character. They originate from Siberia, which is known for its harsh and long winters, hence the cat’s long and impressive coat. After being domesticated and brought indoors, the Siberian became the perfect pet.

Friendly and loyal, the Siberian does grow big and their hair does require attention. The breed has shedding seasons, at which point, you will need to get the vacuum out regularly to keep on top of the fur shower.


6. Ragamuffin

Ragamuffin
Image Credit: Takashi Hososhima, WIkimedia Commons

Weight: 10-18 lbs.
Lifespan: 14-18 years
Character: Loving, affectionate, mellow

The Ragamuffin’s history is not entirely clear, but what is known is that they were made by Ragdoll owners that bred their felines with other longhaired cats. The result is a breed that has some of the same character traits as the Ragdoll and that will shed frequently.

Besides being large, the Ragamuffin is a docile but loving cat breed. While the Ragdoll is sometimes described as having a bit of a wild look, the Ragamuffin has a more appealing feline face with larger and kinder eyes.


7. British Shorthair

British Shorthair
Image Credit: Capri23auto, Pixabay

Weight: 8-17 lbs.
Lifespan: 15-20 years
Character: Easygoing, placid, loyal

The British Shorthair is a loyal and loving cat that originates from Britain. They are one of Britain’s oldest breeds and are believed to have originated with the Romans. Invading Romans brought their own rodent-killing cats, which colonized the island and became the common street cat.

Today, the British Shorthair is described as being a pleasant cat companion because they are friendly and loving. They are even described as being fiercely loyal, and the Shorthair will get along with all family members rather than choosing a single human to bond with.


8. Chausie

Chausie
Image Credit: Wilczakrew, Wikimedia Commons

Weight: 10-16 lbs.
Lifespan: 13-17 years
Character: Energetic, playful, outgoing

The Chausie cats are direct descendants of Ancient Egyptian cats, the breeds that were heavily revered and were even mummified alongside their owners. They still look somewhat wild today, but they have developed many domestic attributes.

The Chausie’s name means jungle cat, and the breed retains much of their outdoor love today. If you enjoy spending time outdoors, this is the cat for you. They also don’t mind spending time indoors with their humans.

Related Read: 10 Best Cat Carriers for Large Cats in 2021: Reviews & Top Picks


9. Turkish Van

Turkish Van
Image Credit: BadMelody, Pixabay

Weight: 12-16 lbs.
Lifespan: 12-15 years
Character: Energetic, loving, intolerant

The Turkish Van originated in eastern Turkey and made their way to England in the 1950s and to U.S. shores in 1983 before being accepted into the Cat Fanciers’ Association in 1994.

The Turkish Van is lively and highly intelligent. They will bond with humans and form a close bond, but they are not tolerant of hair pulling or other behaviors that might be considered too boisterous or rough. In fact, many Turkish Vans do not like to be picked up or cuddled. They will learn tricks, though, and they are one of only a few breeds that love the water.


10. American Bobtail

American Bobtail
Image Credit: Rachel Davies, Wikimedia Commons

Weight: 8-15 lbs.
Lifespan: 13-15 years
Character: Playful, affectionate, friendly

The American Bobtail was first bred in the 1960s, when a Siamese was bred with a short-tailed domestic cat. The modern breed usually has a tail about half the length of a standard domestic cat tail, although it might be shorter, and some Bobtails actually have full tails.

Sometimes referred to as the Golden Retriever of the cat world, the American Bobtail is playful and energetic. You might be able to teach them a few tricks and maybe even encourage them to play fetch. They are fearless without being aggressive, which is a desirable combination of traits for a house cat.

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Largest Domestic Cat Breeds

These are 10 of the largest cat breeds, most of which can grow to be 20 pounds or more. The likes of the Maine Coon, the Savannah, and the Norwegian Forest Cat can even reach a weight of 30 pounds, so they can take up a great deal of room on your couch!


Featured Image Credit: Capri23auto, Pixabay

Nicole Cosgrove

Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts' knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.