Cats aren’t generally thought of as being expensive pets. When most people think of expensive pets, they tend to picture horses, exotic pets, or even purebred dogs of particular breeds. If you head down to the local humane society and adopt a cat, you’ll probably spend $150 or less adding it to your family.
Not all cats are quite so cheap though. In fact, some cats are downright exorbitant in their pricing. Could you imagine spending six figures on a feline? Well, some of these cats are truly more expensive than a modest house. From moderately expensive to outrageously so, the following 20 breeds are the most expensive cats in the world.
The 20 Most Expensive Cat Breeds
1. Ashera Cat
|Average Weight:||26-33 pounds|
|Price:||Up to $125,000|
More than just expensive, the Ashera cat is about as exotic as a housecat can be. This is no ordinary housecat though, as you might surmise from the outrageous price tag of up to $125,000. Yes, that’s in USD, not Yen! The Ashera is a mix of multiple wildcats and domestic house cats, including leopards from Asia and African Servals. They look like exactly what they are; a mix of a wildcat and house cat. However, they’re said to have a canine-like temperament rather than a typical feline demeanor.
2. Savannah Cat
|Average Weight:||12-25 pounds|
Savannah cats are practically still wild. These cats are so exotic that they’re not even recognized as a domestic breed. Because of this, Savannah cats are banned in more than a dozen US states, despite nearly 100 years of being raised in captivity. Still, Savannah cats won’t consume normal cat food; they’ll only eat raw meat. They also don’t tolerate strangers or use litterboxes, so owning a Savannah is akin to owning a wild animal.
3. Bengal Cat
|Average Weight:||8-22 pounds|
To be a true Bengal cat, the feline in question can be no more than four generations away from a wildcat. The first Bengals were created in the 1970s by crossing domestic shorthair housecats with a wild Asian Leopard. Since these cats are so close to wild animals, some jurisdictions have banned them. For instance, you can’t own one in Hawaii or NYC. But this same trait makes these cats quite rare and expensive. With the right genetics, a Bengal can go for as much as $25,000, though prices closer to $10,000 are far more common.
4. Khao Manee
|Average Weight:||8-10 pounds|
You may have never heard of the Khao Manee cat before, and that’s on purpose. The Thai people have kept this cat a secret, though it’s been around for hundreds of years. It’s a naturally occurring breed with all-white fur and eyes that shine like jewels. Referenced in written works as far back as the 14th century, the Khao Manee is also known as the Diamond Eye Cat because of its special eyes, which are often different colors.
5. Sphynx Cats
|Average Weight:||6-12 pounds|
Sphynxes are some of the most easily recognizable of all domestic cats. Their hairless appearance makes them easy to pick out, along with their glowing eyes that take up most of the face. The breed’s hairlessness is the result of a natural genetic mutation, and it doesn’t prevent them from being healthy. Ironically, Sphynxes are not from Egypt. Rather, the breed originated in Toronto, Canada. Most Sphynx cats sell for $1,800-$4,400. However, some Sphynxes of outstanding quality and bloodline or that exhibit rare colors can go for nearly $10,000.
6. Persian Cats
|Average Weight:||7-12 pounds|
Historical evidence seems to indicate that Persian cats have been around for thousands of years. Playful and sweet-tempered, these cats are popular for their demeanor and appearance, with long, luscious hair that lends to their unique look. They have instantly recognizable flat, smushed faces with big, bulging eyes that allow them to range in appearance from regal to downright crazy-looking!
|Average Weight:||7-15 pounds|
The same group of breeders responsible for the creation of the Bengal cat also made the Toyger, which is a cross between a domestic shorthair and a Bengal cat. Many of these cats have markings akin to a tiger, though they’re completely domestic creatures, unlike their Bengal cousins. Toygers tend to be friendly and relaxed, offering exotic looks without the behaviors that can make truly exotic cats so difficult to deal with.
8. Peterbald Cat
|Average Weight:||8-10 pounds|
Peterbalds are pretty versatile cats. Some of them are completely bald, while others are covered in a soft fuzz rather than the fur traditionally adorning felines. This fuzz makes their skin feel much like the skin of a peach, though some Peterbalds have coarse hair that makes them feel more like a man’s face when the whiskers are growing in. Peterbalds are a Russian breed, and they’re rather new, first reported in 1988 after a Russian Donskoy and an Oriental Shorthair produced the first specimen.
9. Ragdoll Cats
|Average Weight:||8-20 pounds|
Ragdolls span a very wide range of prices. For a basic Ragdoll intended to be a pet, prices start around $1,000 and can go as high as $2,500. Prices climb higher if you want a show-quality Ragdoll, which will cost you $1,500 at a minimum and can go for upwards of $4,000. For a show-quality Ragdoll that’s fit for breeding, prices start at more than $2,000 and can climb over $5,000.
10. Siberian Cat
|Average Weight:||15-20 pounds|
Siberians are one of the largest domestic breeds, though still smaller than a Maine Coon. They’re known for being as easy-going as felines come, getting along with your children, guests, and even dogs. Though these cats have thick double coats to protect them from frigid Siberian winters, they’re actually considered to be a hypoallergenic breed because their saliva produces fewer allergens than other breeds.
11. Maine Coon Cats
|Average Weight:||10-30 pounds|
The world record for the longest domestic cat belongs to a Maine Coon named Stewie, who measured 48.5 inches long. These cats can also weigh upwards of 30 pounds, making them one of the largest domestic cat breeds in the world. Accompanying all that size is a rather hefty price. From a reputable breeder, prices for a Maine Coon kitty start at about $1,000 for a pet-quality specimen. If you’re looking for something breeder or show quality, you’ll spend several thousand dollars.
12. Scottish Fold Cat
|Average Weight:||6-13 pounds|
For the most part, a Scottish Fold looks like any typical housecat, but its ears make it nearly as recognizable as iconic breeds like the Sphynx. A Scottish Fold’s ears are folded over, hence the name of Scottish Fold. These ears fold forward and lie flat on the head due to a genetic mutation that occurred spontaneously on a farm cat in Scotland. All true Scottish Folds can trace their lineage back to this first specimen named Susie.
13. Russian Blue Cats
|Average Weight:||5-11 pounds|
Also known as Archangel Cats, the Russian Blue is named for its coat of gray that gives off a blue tint in the light. These cats are considered to be hypoallergenic, making them ideal for many allergy sufferers. They’re known for being active but easy-going pets with a playful yet quiet demeanor. Rather common cats, you can get Russian Blue kittens for as little as $500, though pedigreed specimens from the right breeders can cost as much as $3,000.
14. British Shorthair
|Average Weight:||7-17 pounds|
Once known for their hunting prowess and physicality, today’s British Shorthair cats are much clumsier. Their ancestors were domestic cats in the Roman Empire, and the earliest members of the official breed were created with cats off the streets in the UK. These cats have wide faces that make them appear quite lovable, which is fitting since British Shorthairs are rather affectionate cats. Low-key and easygoing, these cats aren’t too energetic, and they get along with just about everyone. Most cost between $800-$1,200, though some rare British Shorthairs can cost as much as $2,000.
15. Egyptian Mau
|Average Weight:||8-12 pounds|
With a spotted coat, the Egyptian Mau definitely has the appearance of a wildcat. This is the only breed with a naturally spotted coat, and that’s part of the reason they’re so pricey. More than just an attractive housecat, Egyptian Maus are known to be fiercely devoted and attached to their humans. Nearly wiped out in World War II, the breed was saved by a single breeder and her Mau named Baba.
16. Norwegian Forest Cat
|Average Weight:||8-20 pounds|
Large cats with a sturdy build and a double coat to keep them warm in cold Norwegian winters, Norwegian Forest Cats are a natural breed with a distinctly feral appearance. Despite their looks, this breed is entirely domestic and even descended from domestic cats brought to northern Europe by the Romans. The start of this breed is unknown, though if Norse mythology is to be believed, they’ve been around for thousands of years.
17. Selkirk Rex Cat
|Average Weight:||12-16 pounds|
Selkirk Rex cats are quite rare, which is why they can go for such high prices. Granted, the most expensive Selkirk Rex isn’t close in price to a Savannah cat, but $1,500 is still a lot to shell out for a feline. What’s special about this breed is its curly coat, which makes them unique in the cat world.
18. American Curl
|Average Weight:||5-10 pounds|
Here, towards the lower part of our list, the prices for these cats get more reasonable. Still, $1,200 is quite a bit to spend on a feline, so the American Curl definitely isn’t a cheap pet. Similar to the Scottish Fold, the American Curl has special ears, only this time, they curl backward. Every American Curl can be traced back to a single stray kitten named Shulamith with some strange ears. Even today, all American Curls are born with straight ears, but they curl backward just a few days after the kitten is born, giving them the trademark ears responsible for the breed’s name.
19. American Wirehair Cats
|Average Weight:||8-12 pounds|
The distinguishing feature of an American Wirehair cat is, of course, its wirehaired coat. These cats are easy to care for and have a naturally strong resistance to diseases. They’re known for having playful and good-natured temperaments with above-average intelligence. Unlike many breeds, these are social and outgoing cats that love visitors and will follow you around the house all day.
20. American Shorthair Cat
|Average Weight:||6-15 pounds|
American Shorthairs have long received love for their endearing personalities. These cats are original Americans, their ancestors having sailed across the sea to the New World on the Mayflower. Back then, they were more loved for their rat-catching abilities than their demeanor. In the 1960s, this breed received its own name so it could be differentiated from the many domestic shorthaired cats across America.
The Most Expensive Breed Is from a Breeder in Los Angeles
The rarest and most expensive breed in the world is an exclusive breed produced by a breeder in Los Angeles. They only release 100 kittens each year, and these specimens have sold for an incredible $125,000. If you want to add one of these incredibly rare felines to your family, the price starts at $22,000, and you could spend up to five years on the waiting list!
Ashera cats are the most exclusive breed around, resembling a snow leopard thanks to their impressive coat and pattern. Creating the Ashera breed required crossing some exotic wildcats such as the Asian leopard and African Serval with a domestic housecat. These cats can get up to 30 pounds, and despite the astronomical pricing, they’re essentially just Savannah cats. Of course, they’re far pricier, and owning one makes you part of a very elite club.
Most people spend little to nothing on their family’s pet cat. Many are gifted or purchased through someone they know or found on Craigslist. But cat lovers are willing to spend ludicrous amounts on their furry felines, as evidenced by some of the prices on this list. While some of the breeds that sell for $1,200 aren’t too outrageous, certain breeds can cost as much as a house and it take up to five years on a waiting list to get your exclusive kitten. As much a status symbol as a pet, these regal felines are the top of the heap, and they’ll always be in high demand by the cat-loving elites of the world.
- Another interesting article on the topic: Glow-in-the-Dark Cats — Genetically Modified Cats Explained
Featured Image Credit: Kekyalyaynen, Shutterstock