Domesticated cats come in all kinds of shapes and sizes. While most breeds are small and petite, a few of them are so big they almost resemble a wild cat. This article will cover the top 9 types of longest cats in the world by breed. The criterion to get on this list is simple: the breed must have an exceptional average and maximum length.
It’s no coincidence that some of these cat breeds originate from some of the coldest climates on the planet and also tend to have some of the densest fur. Scientists believe that larger body size may help reduce heat loss when it’s cold outside. Of course, when human breeders took over, they often selected for the larger body sizes. The following list of cats offers plenty of big fur balls for owners to snuggle with.
#9: Burmese Cat
The Burmese start off the list. The breed actually descends from a single cat found in Burma (now Myanmar) around 1930. It was then developed in the United States and Britain to achieve the current look. The body can often reach up to 18 inches long (not including the tail) and sometimes even longer; the British Burmese tends to be slightly longer than the American Burmese. Compared to other breeds on this list, the Burmese have a shorter, glossy coat, mostly solid in color except for some darker points on the extremities.
You can read more about the Burmese here.
#8: Persian Cat
The Persian cat was first exported to Europe in the early 17th century. It has since become one of the most popular cat breeds in the world. The typical Persian is characterized by a flat face, short muzzle, large eyes, and a strong, muscular body. The long, elegant coat can come in a variety of colors and patterns, including tabby, calico, solid white, and bicolor. The typical Persian can reach up to 18 inches long and stand about 10 inches tall at the shoulders, making them one of the longest types of cats in the world. These quiet, placid cats are content to lie around the house without getting into too much trouble.
You can read more about the Persian cat here.
#7: Siberian Cat
Although the history of this breed dates back centuries, the national cat of Russia is a relative newcomer to the United States, having only arrived here in the 1990s. The Siberian is insulated from the extremely cold weather of its native northern environment with three glossy layers of fur: the guard hairs, the awn hairs, and the down hairs. The coat comes in various color patterns, including solid, tabby, tortoiseshell, and color point.
Siberians are also characterized by strong, powerful bodies, round paws, large eyes, triangle-shaped ears, and a big fluffy tail. They are considered to be very powerful and adept jumpers that like to climb on things around the home. Overall, the appearance shows strong similarities to the Norwegian Forest Cat, about which more will be said later. Just like the Persian, the body of the Siberian cat can easily reach up to 18 inches long and sometimes even more. The long tail adds even more length to the already impressive body.
You can read more about the Siberian cat here.
The Chausie ranks among the largest domestic cat hybrids in the world. It was originally developed by crossing a domesticated cat with the wild jungle cat. Built for running and jumping, the Chausie is characterized by long legs and a lithe body. The International Cat Association, which officially recognized it in 1995, accepts three possible color combinations: solid black, black grizzled tabby, and black ticked tabby. While other combinations are sometimes possible as well, they are generally discouraged by breeders.
As a descendent of the jungle cat, the Chausie is incredibly athletic, outgoing, and intelligent. Their body and tail size can vary, but they are considered to be exceptionally long cats with thin ringed tails.
You can read more about some exotic cat breeds including the Chausie here.
#5: Norwegian Forest Cat
The Norwegian Forest Cat, which probably descended from an ancient breed of short-haired cats brought to Norway by Vikings around 1000 AD, ranks among the biggest domestic cat breeds in the world. Today the modern Norwegian is a strong, muscular cat with long legs, a bushy tail, and strong claws for climbing. The combination of long, glossy outer hair and a woolly undercoat helps provide insulation against the harsh northern environment in which it was bred. The typical body length for this breed is 12 to 18 inches long, but they can sometimes grow much larger than that as well. Owners should enjoy their friendly, good-natured disposition.
You can read more about the Norwegian Forest Cat here.
The Ragamuffin was once considered to be a variant of the Ragdoll (about which more will be said) until it was established as its own separate breed in 1994. Docile, friendly, and good-natured, this cat breed is characterized by a heavy, muscular body with long dense, and silky hair. Just about every fur color and pattern is allowed under breed standards. The typical length of this cat is normally between 12 and 18 inches long, but as with any cat breed, there are some exceptional specimens that can grow nearly twice as big under the right circumstances. Part of the reason for this extraordinary size is due to the long development period of two to four years before it reaches full adulthood. This gives it extra time to grow.
You can read more about the Ragamuffin here.
The Ragdoll easily ranks among the longest types of cat breeds in the world. It originally came about from various crosses between the Persian, Siamese, and Burmese. The original Ragdoll was a longhaired white cat called Josephine in the 1960s from whom all other members of this breed descended. It supposedly got the name Ragdoll from the fact that it would go limp after being picked up.
Characterized by striking blue eyes, soft silky white fur, and dark markings around the extremities, these beautiful cats make quite an impression on people. They are often considered to be a kind of “dog-like” cat for their affection toward people and the ease with which they can be handled. Like the Ragamuffin, they have a very long juvenile phase of nearly three years due to the extensive growth required to achieve full size. Most members of this breed normally measure between 17 and 21 inches long (excluding the tail) and stand about 9 to 11 inches tall, but some extraordinary specimens can easily exceed 30 inches long. Males are usually quite a bit larger than females.
You can read more about the Ragdoll here.
#2: Savannah Cat
The Savannah qualifies as the largest domestic cat hybrid in the world. It originated from a cross between a Siamese and an African wild cat (the serval). This has led to some controversy about whether the Savannah should count as a domesticated cat at all for the purpose of breed registration. Regardless, the Savannah is interesting because it combines incredible body length (sometimes exceeding 20 inches) with impressive shoulder height. The tallest cat ever recorded by the Guinness World Records was a Savannah by the name of Arcturus Aldebaran Powers. He was measured standing about 19 inches (or 48 centimeters) tall on November 3rd, 2016. The Savannah truly ranks as the largest domestic cat hybrid in the world.
You can read more about some exotic cat breeds like the Savannah here.
#1: Maine Coon
The Maine Coon consistently takes the spot for the biggest domestic cat breed in the world. Originally bred as a farm cat to hunt annoying vermin and pests in the state of Maine, this gentle giant combines many excellent qualities, including a strong affection toward people, a playful personality, and long, elegant fur. They can reach sometimes reach 40 inches long and stand about 16 inches high at the shoulders (compared to only 10 inches for most house cats).
The Guinness World Record holder for the longest cat ever was a Maine Coon called Mymains Stewart Gilligan from Reno, Nevada. When he was measured on August 28, 2010, he reached just over 4 feet long (or 123 centimeters) from head to tail tip. Other exceptionally long Maine Coons include Barivel from Vigevano, Italy (3 feet and 11 inches) and Ludo from the United Kingdom (3 feet and 10.5 inches). A Maine Coon by the name of Cygnus also holds the record for longest tail on a domestic cat at 17.58 inches. Maine Coons are well-represented among the biggest domestic cat breeds in the world.
You can read more about the Maine Coon here.