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There's no denying that ragdolls are among the most gorgeous cat breeds in the world. Aside from their stunning eyes, their silky coats make them irresistible to cuddle. Whether you're already an owner of a ragdoll or want one of your own to spoil, it's vital for you to know if they're considered long-haired so you can properly groom them. We've researched this topic thoroughly to give you the information you need.
Ragdolls are considered mid- to long-haired cats. These felines have lush, fluffy fur that gets thicker with age. An unusual characteristic of their fur is that they don't have an undercoat found in most long-haired cat breeds, making them less likely to shed and trigger allergies.
Want to learn more about caring for ragdolls' coats? Read on below as we give you more facts about ragdolls and dive further into grooming tips and guidelines for your beloved pet.
Brief Guide to Ragdoll Coats
Silky and regal, ragdolls' coats stand out as one of their most defining characteristics. This cat breed sports a plush coat that's often compared to rabbit fur. Ragdolls also have neck ruffs that are fluffier than the rest of their body, giving them a distinguished appearance.
A ragdoll's coat may vary from feline to feline. Some ragdolls may have longer guard hairs, which is the top layer of the coat. For the most part, however, these differences are subtle.
Because they don't have an undercoat, ragdolls are not as prone to shedding as other long-haired breeds. Their seasonal shedding occurs during the spring and autumn seasons.
While ragdolls generally don't require a lot of grooming, be sure to check for matting in their belly and armpit areas, especially during shedding season or as they age.
Ragdoll Coat Types
Ragdolls are classified according to their coat types. There are four different coat types, namely: traditional, mink, sepia, and solid.
Interestingly enough, some cat lovers, breeders, and cat associations do not consider any cat besides traditional ragdolls to be ragdolls. Others recognize and embrace them as the ragdoll breed.
Here are the four coat types of ragdolls:
Traditional ragdolls have lush coats with captivating blue eyes. While these cats come in a wide variety of colors and patterns, they're born pure white and only come into their color once they reach four days to two weeks of age.
Mink ragdolls have thicker coats than traditional ragdolls with exceptionally fluffy tails. While they have the same color and pattern variety as their traditional counterparts, their coat has richer and darker colors. They often have aqua or blue-green eyes. Unlike traditional ragdolls, they are born with their color.
Sepia ragdolls have the thickest and softest coats of the four coat types. Their coats are also darker than mink ragdolls, and they can have a wide range of eye colors.
Solid ragdolls have the darkest and deepest colors among all four types. Unlike the other ragdolls, they're not colorpoint cats with different shades throughout their body. Instead, their different colors contrast strongly against each other. They also have thick, fluffy fur.
For more facts on the physical appearance and color of ragdolls' coats, check out this article: "Are Ragdolls Born White: Yes, And Here’s Why."
Tips For Maintaining Ragdolls' Coats
Ragdolls are much more low-maintenance than other long-haired cats. However, they still require a certain level of care and regular grooming to ensure that their coat stays smooth and healthy.
Here are a few tips for keeping your ragdoll's coat well-maintained:
Brush your ragdoll regularly
Brushing your fur baby helps prevent tangles, hairballs, matting, and shedding. It's ideal to do this every other day, but once a week should suffice.
Cat experts recommend that you start brushing your ragdoll as early as possible. This will help prevent difficulty grooming later on.
Plus, it helps establish a routine that will allow you and your pet to bond during each session! Ragdolls are affectionate by nature, so when you start brushing them as a kitten, they will view it as quality time with you.
Follow a brushing routine
To brush your cat successfully, start with the belly area since this is the area that's most prone to matting. Work your way to the back, then the hind legs and front legs. Next, brush the tail. Finish the session by brushing your cat's head and giving them a treat afterward.
Make sure to brush in an upward direction first. Doing this will help you check for fleas. Then, brush in a downward direction to smooth the fur out.
If your cat struggles with brushing, make sure not to force them into it. Instead, let your cat relax and brush different parts at different times throughout the day.
Use different tools
Some cats may be more comfortable with particular brushing tools than with others. If your cat doesn't like the brush you're using, consider switching it out for a more comfortable one.
Make sure to use a brush with soft bristles to make it more enjoyable for your cat. It will make your cat feel like they're getting a nice massage from you.
Ragdoll owners often use steel combs for the cat's body and a bristle brush for their face.
You can also use grooming gloves to remove any excess fur.
Bathe your ragdoll once a month
It's important to bathe your ragdoll regularly to prevent matting and protect them against dirt and bacteria. This will also help keep their coats shiny and fluffy.
Now bathing can be quite stressful for most cats, so make sure to keep the environment as pleasant as possible. Use just enough lukewarm water to fill up the bath but not so much that it will cover your cat's entire body. Apply a small amount of cat shampoo and gently spread it throughout the body, except for the head.
After this, you can rinse the shampoo away by slowly pouring it over the body and away from their eyes and ears. Clean their face and eyes with a damp towel. Then, you can dry your cat with a dry towel or a hairdryer.
If your cat makes a fuss during bathing, don't force them into it. Instead, wait for them to calm down. Also, you can give them treats throughout the bath to reward them for good behavior.
Feed your ragdoll a healthy diet
Your ragdoll's diet doesn't just affect their health; it also has a huge impact on their coat and appearance. A good diet is crucial to keeping your cat healthy inside and out.
Ragdolls are not the most active cats, so you'll need to feed them wet food and dry food that will prevent them from becoming overweight or obese. You will also need to add omega-3 fatty acids to your cat's diet to keep its coat glossy.
Learn more about how to feed your ragdoll properly by taking a look at this post: "How Much Should You Feed A Ragdoll Cat?"
Should I trim my ragdoll's hair?
It's not advisable to trim your ragdoll's hair. Their fur is long and thick, designed to give them protection for both warm and cold weather. Instead, brush them regularly to keep their fur well-groomed.
At what age do Ragdoll cats get fluffy?
Ragdolls get fluffier as they age and they will reach the peak of their fluffiness at four to five years old. You may also notice that their neck ruffs get thicker and more noticeable with age.
Can a ragdoll cat have short hair?
No, a ragdoll cannot have short hair. If your ragdoll has short hair, it's likely mixed with a short-haired cat breed.
Ragdolls are fluffy, adorable felines with thick and lush fur. They don't have undercoats, so they're easier to groom and less likely to shed than other long-haired breeds. Keep in mind that they need regular brushing, grooming, and a healthy diet to keep their coats shiny, healthy, and silky smooth.