What You Need To Know Before Buying a Ragdoll Cat/Kitten?
There is always a question on the minds of any future ragdoll owners: ragdoll cat/kitten price.
While many people can see Ragdolls as expensive pets, from my personal point of view (as an owner and breeder), this breed is worth investment.
I can assure you that Raggies are a breed of cats normally an amiable and affectionate personality, beautiful, soft, cuddly, and loving family pets but bear in mind they are large and heavy compared to other cat breeds.
Even with their oversized bodies, most of ragdolls tend to go limp in your arms, just like a rag-doll (guess how they get their name, Ragdoll?).
The Ragdoll cat price is influenced by factors such as the cat's pedigree, pattern, the country of origin, age, show record etc.
For starters, buying a purebred ragdoll kitten from a show breeder may be a bit pricey compared to adopting adult one from the shelter.
But buying a kitten isn't the only option available.
In the age of internet you can easy find mature ragdoll cats for sale or rehoming, sometimes the breeder may fail to sell the kitten for some reason, and the kitten matures before finding a buyer.
The Ragdoll Cats/Kittens Price Range
Generally, Ragdoll cats cost more than many other cat species because of their desirable nature.
Ideally, they are carefully selected and bred by experienced and licensed breeders who know what these breeds are.
Ragdoll cats and kittens price range is between £500 for a pet (neutered) and £3000+ for a show/breed quality ones.
However, these prices differ from region to region, pattern and whether you're buying breeding rights too.
Even at that, you can be sure that the demand for a ragdoll cat is high across the globe.
In some countries like China, a Ragdoll cat isn't just a pet, it's also regarded as a status symbol.
$800 – $2000
AU$1,800 – AU$2,600
Besides, this breed of cat is not readily available on the market, which drives the cost up even more in United Kingdom.
Breeder & Show Quality
£2000 – £2500+
£1500 – £2000+
The above table shows that pet quality is the most affordable consideration for the ragdoll kitten.
Let's talk more about quality and how it affects the Ragdoll prices.
Show Quality And Pet Quality
Appearance is the most significant difference between pet and show qualities.
This difference directly impacts the price of a ragdoll kitten.
Ragdolls for show are expected to have particular patterns and colors recommended by The Cat Fanciers Association (CFA).
The CFA can disqualify a cat, strictly on the basis of physical traits.
For instance: a bicolor Ragdoll is disqualified if it lacks the white inverted ‘V' or has a wider dark area on either of the legs.
A mitted pattern Ragdoll that lacks the white chin will be disqualified.
More importantly, all Ragdolls MUST have blue eyes to qualify as show breeds.
Show quality breeds are strictly selected and bred, and this means they cost more.
Even as the prices are glaringly different, there is no distinction in terms of behavior and temperament between the show and pet breeds.
Both are usually neutered, spayed, or have that strict agreement that they'll be spayed or neutered after purchase.
Breeder And Show Quality Price
If you're looking for a breeder and show quality Ragdoll kitten, expect to pay more, usually in the range of £3000+!
These show quality Ragdolls have perfect markings that the CFA will allow for the shows. They can also be used for breeding purposes too , and this commands a higher price tag. For the breed to pass for show and breed qualities, it must have blue eyes too!
One more thing…
Apart from not being neutered or spayed, a breeder quality ragdoll must have also undergone tests to rule out any genetic defects that could be passed onto its offspring.
Breeding Costs Affect the Price of Ragdoll Cats
A breeder considers a number of factors when determining the cost of a Ragdoll cat.
These factors include:
- Costs of parading the cats at cat shows
- The titles earned by the breeding queens at cat shows
- Breeding overhead costs
- The kittens' vaccinations and other health maintenance costs
- Travel expenses
Cat shows attract breeders who travel far and wide to showcase their breeding queens and studs.
Besides the traveling expenses, there're also enrollment costs for such shows. During these shows, the cat earns titles that represent the breed standard.
For instance, kittens from a Triple Grand Champion would cost more than the kittens from mere Champion studs.
Therefore, it's important to note that cats that haven't earned many titles from competition circuits won't fetch more than those that hold multiple titles.
Different Ragdoll Patterns and Their Prices
Ragdoll Kitten Pattern
Just a little explanation of what these patterns are.
From the physical appearance, a mitted Ragdoll cat's front paws have white mittens.
This look has made many cat enthusiasts believe that all Ragdoll cats look this way. But this isn't the case.
Additionally, mitted ragdolls sport white stockings on their back feet, a white stripe on the belly, and on the chin, which can be mistaken for milk.
In some cases, a mitted Ragdoll cat has a face with a white strip or blaze, as the kitten in the photo above. (A perfect hour-glass blaze)
A bicolour Ragdoll looks like its mitted counterpart and can easily be mistaken for one. However, you can tell the difference by looking at their feet.
While the mitted Ragdoll has mittens or stockings, the bicolor ragdoll cat has all the feet completely white.
Besides, the bicolour Ragdoll has fluffy white fur on the chest, while the back and body have more color, like a ‘saddle'.
3. Solid Point
Solid point ragdolls have their fluffy physique elegantly marked, making them look much like the Siamese Cats.
This type of Ragdoll cat has coloured feet, ears, and tail.
Sometimes, there's some little colour that shows up on the body.
However, the rest of the body is cream, white, or ivory in color.
The name may sound exotic, but in the real sense, the Lynx ragdoll cat is like the solid point one except that the points have tabby cat markings.
These tabby stripes appear like the letter “W” on the Ragdoll's forehead, making it appear a little like a worried cat. This cat's tail and legs also have faint stripes.
A tortie ragdoll cat looks like the Calico cat. Since this type of Ragdoll has no markings on the whole body, you can identify it by the colors that appear on the tail, feet, and ears.
The most common tortie colors are red and black, but you can also get:
- blue (light gray)
- creamy red
Ragdolls are usually grouped based on their coat patterns.
Sometimes, however, these patterns can be confusing because they may be combined.
For instance, it isn't surprising to get a ‘mitted tortie spotting white mittens' and black and red coloring.
You can also get a bicolor lynx or a Ragdoll with tabby cat points with a white chest and feet.
With these possible coat pattern combinations, it can get complex trying to fix some ragdolls into particular types.
Ragdoll Cat Price Vs. Lifetime Cost
The thought of owning this much sought-after cat can easily blind your financial judgment.
While it's easy to put a price tag on the kitten you want in your household, there are many hidden costs that you should be aware of.
The total cost of owning a Ragdoll goes beyond the initial buying price.
What should you consider?
Ragdolls aren't average size 5kg cats.
They're larger in size and heavier in weight. This means that they can consume more food compared to ordinary cats.
Your Ragdoll's quality and appetite will play a significant role in determining how much you spend on their food, likely in the range of £50-£75 per month.
Grooming is essential in keeping your Ragdoll healthy. This involves clipping the nails and brushing your cat's teeth which you can yourself. However, you can also seek your vet's services to check how things are going.
On average, nail clipping is likely to cost you between £25-£50 after every two months.
Related > A Ragdoll Cat Coat Quick Guide
3. Vet Services
It's wise to give your cat (minimum) annual vet check-ups.
Health check-ups may not cost much more than £100-£200, depending on your vet's services.
4. Other Tests
These tests aren't the usual vet tests that are done annually on your Ragdoll cat. Testing your cat and treating it against parasites, FeLV, and FIV could cost you approximately £100 per vet visit. This is an extra cost that you should be aware of.
5. Pet Insurance
Insuring your Ragdoll is a very personal decision.
Depending on the type of insurance in your locality, it can cost you between £25-£50 per month. That aside, you should also have an independent savings account for your pet needs which can arise anytime.
6. Toys, Beds, and Other Extras
Toys, beds and other goodies can cost a lot of money, depending on where you source them.
You're likely to cough up £50-£100 (at least!) as upfront costs before you choose what you want for your Ragdoll.
And it's an ongoing cost for a cat you will probably have for at least 15 years!
To Adopt or To Buy a Ragdoll Cat
It's true that images of dejected cats behind cages have inundated the internet and can evoke powerful emotions.
The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) notes that 33 percent of households in the U.S .have a cat. This massive number of felines is an indicator of how much they're truly loved.
However, deciding whether to buy or adopt a Ragdoll cat can't just be wished away. Because of this huge number of cats in the country, many feline enthusiasts and societies encourage prospective cat owners to adopt from the animal shelters to give new life to a cat.
There are reported cases of cat mistreatment in the ‘breeding mills' where profit supersedes ethics. Many pundits say that you'll be encouraging this unethical behavior by buying cats from these ‘breeding mills'. Ragdoll kitten breeding mills aren't any different.
Emotions aside, some people are skeptical about adopting a Ragdoll cat from an animal shelter and their worries are genuine.
Some cats with mysterious backgrounds could be housed in these shelters only for you to adopt one with behavioral or serious medical issues.
Additionally, some prospective cat owners may simply prefer pedigreed Ragdoll cats, which aren't easily found in animal shelters.
In as much as adopting a Ragdoll presents you with a challenge regarding its behavior and health, experts from CFA insist that adopting is the easiest and cheapest way to own a Ragdoll cat.
While the decision to adopt or buy a Ragdoll cat shouldn't be a spur of the moment decision, investigating a reputable breeder can help you avoid the nightmare of getting a Ragdoll cat that could leave you heart broken, should the cat be seriously ill.
It's Ultimately Up to You
In the end, when selecting a Ragdoll kitten to purchase, don't rely on price alone to be a guarantee of the Ragdoll kittens health and breeding. That high price tag ‘should' reflect the quality of the kitten, but it's not a guarantee.
It is your responsibility to investigate the medical history and genetics of the kitten. Look into all vet checkups, vaccinations (including ‘brand name' of vaccine) and spaying/neutering procedures.
Your breeder should be open and more than willing to disclose all information regarding the kitten's history.
Do not rely on price to determine the health of the cat.