The origins and development of the Ragdoll is difficult to establish and there are a lot of myths out there. The Ragdolls were originated by Ann Baker a breeder in Riverside, California. It was in early 1960 that the breed was created. It is believed that a white Persian Angora named Josephine with outcrossings to Birman and Burmese cats started it all.
Ann Baker advertised widely and mailed fliers promoting the breed to cat lovers nationwide. Early publicity spread and the breed quickly became an object of controversy. Bakers breeding program consisted of a handful of breeders contracted under her. She was paid a royalty fee for every kitten sold. As time went on, Ann Baker's statements and claims about the became strange, supernatural and very hard to believe. She publicized statements outlining how Ragdoll cats have human genes in them and that they are immune to pain and represent a link between us and space aliens
The breeders who were once loyal to her, were now having doubts about how to develop the breed, without losing integrity that these wonderful cats deserve. Because of this, several breeders broke off from Ann Baker and continued breeding Ragdolls for what they are.....highly affectionate and loving companions.
Denny Dayton was an instrumental figure in the history and development of the breed. After he broke away from Ann Baker, he fought hard to make the breed legitimate and acceptable by Cat Fanciers standards. Denny Dayton succeeded and in 1967, the Ragdoll breed was first recognized in the United States.
Dayton is the originator of RFCI (Ragdoll Fanciers Club International) the most reputable and highly respected Ragdoll cat registry in the world. Dayton also worked very hard to get the breed recognized by TICA. Ann Baker went on with her breeding program but her stand, relative to the breed's growth and acceptance, was that of anger and bitterness. In 1971 she created her own cat registry association known as IRCA (International Ragdoll Cat Association). Since then, she has been in bitter debate about how only her Ragdolls are legitimate and the rest are fake. Very few breeders are still working under her in the United States. Cat registered by IRCA are not recognized by ANY cat shows
General description
The ragdoll is a firm, large cat with a medium boned, muscular body. It comes in three different varieties; colourpoint, mitted and bicolour and four different colors; seal (n), blue (a), choclate (b) and lilac (c).
Medium sized head with a broad modified wedge and a flat plane between the ears. The nose should have a slight curve in the upper third. Well developed cheeks, chin and nose
Medium-sized ears that are broad at the base and have rounded tips. The ears are wide set and tilt slightly forward.
The eyes are big, oval and allways blue.
The body is long, medium boned and muscular. The fullgrown cat should be as wide over the shoulders as it
is in the hind quarters. Medium long legs - hind legs slightly higher than front. The paws are big and rounded with tufts between the toes. The Ragdoll developes slowly and it can take over three years before it's reached full size and colour.
The tail must be long, well furnished and in proportion with the body.
It has a dense, soft and silky coat. The coat lays with the body and brakes as the cat moves. In the face the coat is short and increases in lenght from the top of the head to the shoulders. It forms a nice bib
around the face. Medium to long coat on the sides, abdomen and hind quarters.
Points ( ears, mask, legs och tail) must be well defined and in harmony with the body colour. Body colour is lighter than the point colour. Slight shadings of colour are allowed on the body and the stomach. Colour on the nose and pads must be analouge to the points.
Points (except paws and chin) and bodycolour as the colourpoint. White mittens on the front legs. Hind legs white up to the higher hock. White chin and preferebly a white stripe on the nose. There should also be a white stripe going from the bib, over the stomach, up to the base of the tail.
Points ( ears, mask och tail) to be well defined. The mask must have an inverted white V. The stomach must be white and without spots. Legs preferebly white. Body colour lighter than points. White spots on the back is allowed. Nose leather and paw pads are pink.
The Ragdoll is a firm large rase with a calm temperament. A Ragdoll is a beautiful, affectionate, loving companion. Many people have compared their Ragdoll's personality to that of a loyal canine. Ragdolls are eager to interact and their are numerous accounts of Ragdolls fetching there favorite toy, learning how to shake hands, and sitting up of command. The Ragdoll personality is warm and friendly. Ragdolls want to be with you all the time. Ragdolls need lots of attention and are wonderful lap warmers.
It's a splendid familycat and it also enjoys the company of other animals. It's talks a lot but isn't as loud as for instance the siames.A ragdoll likes to be in the center and even if it can be left alone during the days it is happiest when it's got company. The ragdoll will come to the door and welcome you when you get home (if he's not taking a nap just then) and he loves to be the first to say hello when you've got guests
The Ragdoll is special in an other way to. It can go totally limp when you lift it up. That's why it's called "ragdoll". There are some rumours that the ragdoll doesn't feel pain - This is absolutely not true!!! It's just as sensitive to pain as any other animal (or human).
Your Ragdoll should be INDOORS only. Ragdolls are very docile animals and are not able to defend themselves from other animals. Even an indoor only cat should have a collar and name tag, that way if he does escape from your house he will be easier to find. Indoor only cats will be very scared if they wander outside.