8 Ginger Cat Breeds (With Photos)

About ginger cats

Also known as orange, or red, ginger is a common coat colour that comprises of a light agouti (ticked) background and darker stripes, sworls or spots. The orange gene is located on the X chromosome, which makes it sex-linked. As males (XY) only have one X chromosome, they will either be orange or non-orange, however, as the female (XX) has two chromosomes, she can be orange if she inherits two copies of the orange gene, or caliby, calico or tortoiseshell if she inherits one copy of orange and one non-orange.

All ginger cats are tabby, but not all tabby cats are ginger. The solid pattern is the result of the non-agouti gene which overlays the agouti base colour with melanin pigment to produce a solid coloured cat. The non-agouti gene does not affect phaeomelanin (red), and therefore all ginger cats exhibit the tabby pattern.

1. British Shorthair

Two British Shorthair cats
Nynke van Holten/Shutterstock

Breed overview

  • Energy: Low to medium
  • Weight: Males 5.5 – 6.5 kg (12.1 – 14.3 lbs), females 5.5 – 6 kg (12.1 – 13.2 lbs)
  • Colours: All colours and patterns, blue (grey) is the most well recognised
  • Grooming: Weekly
  • Other names: British blue

About

Cats were introduced to Britain via the Romans who used them to keep rodent populations down. These cats interbred with European wildcats which resulted in naturally robust cats with thick coats. The British Shorthair is believed to have been founded by Harrison Weir, who developed the breed from these working cats.

Personality

The British Shorthair is known for its amiable, quiet and laid back personality. While British Shorthairs enjoy the company of their human family, they have an independent streak and are happy to amuse themselves. This laid-back personality makes the British Shorthair a great choice for families. If children are too noisy, the British Shorthair will remove himself to somewhere quieter. Their independence also means that they don’t tend to suffer from separation anxiety if left on their own during the day.

Appearance

British Shorthairs are a large, cobby breed with a broad chest and strong legs. The large, round head has a good breadth of skull, a short, straight nose and large, well-opened eyes.

2. Devon Rex

Ginger Devon Rex
zkittler/Pixabay

Breed overview

  • Energy: Medium to high
  • Weight: Males 4 – 5 kg (8.8 – 11 lbs), females 3.5-7 kg (7.7 – 8.8 lbs)
  • Colours: All coat colours and patterns
  • Grooming: Weekly
  • Other names: ET cat, Pixie cat

About

The Devon Rex originated from a stray cat with an unusually curly coat who was living in an abandoned mine in Buckfastleigh, Devon. This elusive male mated with a local tortoiseshell and white cat was cared for by Beryl Cox. Four kittens were produced, one of whom had the same curly coat as his father. The kitten, now named Kirlee was purchased by Brian Sterling-Webb, who believed he may share the same gene as the curly-coated Cornish Rex. Unfortunately, test matings proved this was not the case, however, Kirlee was used to establish a new breed, named the Devon Rex.

Personality

The Devon Rex is a curious, mischievous, active and playful cat with a love of heights, earning itself the nickname ‘monkey in cat’s clothing‘. Devon rexes are an extremely people-oriented breed that loves to be close to their human family at all times and will often jump onto their owner’s shoulders. Their loving personality and playful nature make them great companions for families with children.

Devon Rexes need to be given plenty of opportunities to burn energy with a range of interactive and puzzle cat toys as well as cat trees or perches to view the world from a height.

Appearance

The Devon Rex is a small to medium cat with a lithe but muscular body and fine boning. Legs are sturdy and the hind legs are slightly longer than the forelegs. This unique cat breed has an elf-shaped head with prominent cheekbones, large low-set ears and oval eyes set wide apart.

The coat is short, soft and curly and contains all three types of hair guard, awn and down. Whiskers and eyebrows are short and crinkled. All coat colours and patterns are accepted.

3. Exotic Shorthair

Ginger exotic shorthair
Catalin Arcu/Shutterstock

Breed overview

  • Energy: Low to medium
  • Weight: Males 5-6 kg (11-13 lbs), females 4-5 kg (8.8-11 lbs)
  • Colours: All colours and patterns
  • Grooming: Weekly
  • Other names: Teddy bear cat

About

The exotic shorthair was created in the 1960s by crossing American shorthairs with Persians, Burmese and Abyssinians to create a shorthaired Persian. As exotics are outcrossed to Persians, most litters will contain both short-haired and long-haired kittens.

Personality

Exotic shorthairs share a similar laid-back and placid personality to the Persian. Their sweet, affectionate and fun-loving nature make them an ideal family pet. Most exotics love to follow their human family around the home but tend to be less demanding than other breeds.

Appearance

The exotic shorthair is a large, cobby breed with a broad chest and low legs. The head round with a sweet and expressive face. The snub-nose has a break between the large round eyes.

The dense, thick and plush coat comes in all colours and patterns.

4. Maine Coon

Ginger Maine coon
Oleksandr Volchanskyi/Shutterstock

Breed overview

  • Energy: Medium
  • Weight: Males 6 – 8 kg (13.2 – 17.6 lbs), females 5 – 7 kg (11 – 15.4 lbs)
  • Colours: Solid, tabby, bi-colour and shaded
  • Grooming: Daily
  • Other names: Coonie, Maine Cat, Maine Trick Cat, American Longhair, American Forest Cat, American Shag and American Snughead

About

The Maine Coon is one of the largest cat breeds that are thought to be descended from ship cats brought over from Europe. The breed was eclipsed with the introduction of the Persian but was resurrected by a small group of dedicated breeders in the 1950s and the Maine Coon remains a popular breed to this day.

Personality

Maine coons are known as the gentle giant of the cat world due to their sweet and calm nature. With a dog-like personality, the Maine coon loves to be close to their favourite human and will follow them from room to room.

The Maine coon loves to be up high, they also have a love of water. Their activity levels can range from energetic to couch potato.

Appearance

The Maine coon is a large, rugged and well-balanced cat with a broad chest and well-muscled body. Tufted ears sit on top of a large and broad head, with wide-set eyes and a visibly square chin.

The silky coat is shaggy, with a ruff around the neck and shoulders and a long, plumed tail. It can take up to three years for a Maine coon to reach full maturity.

Maine Coons have a silky, shaggy coat with a ruff on the shoulders and a long plumed tail. There is nothing extreme about the Maine Coon apart from its imposing size. It can take up to three years for a Maine Coon to reach maturity.

5. Munchkin

Munchkin cat
TrapezaStudio/Shutterstock

Breed overview

  • Energy: Low to medium
  • Weight: Males 5.5 – 6.5 kg (12.1 – 14.3 lbs), females 5.5 – 6 kg (12.1 – 13.2 lbs)
  • Colours: All colours and patterns, blue (grey) is the most well recognised
  • Grooming: Weekly
  • Other names: Wiener cat, American Munchkin, Sausage cat, Midget cat, Midget kitty

About

The Munchkin breed arose from a spontaneous mutation in a short-legged pregnant cat named Blackberry who was rescued from underneath a truck by Sandra Hochenedel in 1983. Blackberry delivered a litter of four kittens, two of whom had the same short legs as Blackberry. One of the short-legged kittens named Toulouse was given to Kay LaFrance. It is Blackberry and Toulouse who became founders of the breed.

The short legs are due to achondroplasia, a form of dwarfism which causes a shortening of the long bones.

The Munchkin breed is named after the munchkins from the 1939 movie, The Wizard of Oz. There is some controversy over the welfare of Munchkin cats, and not all cat associations recognise them.

Personality

Munchkin cats are playful, energetic, outgoing and maintain their kitten-like personality well into adulthood. The munchkin loves company and gets along well with everyone.

The short legs do not hamper mobility and Munchkin cats will zoom around the house and can jump, although not as high as normal-legged cats. Munchkins have earned the nickname magpie cats due to their love of shiny objects which they love to hide away.

Appearance

The Munchkin cat is a medium-sized breed with a semi-foreign body, the legs are short with the forelimbs and hindlimbs equal length. The head is a modified wedge, ears are in proportion to the head and round, wide-set eyes.

Munchkins can have a long or short coat, in any colour and pattern combination.

6. Oriental shorthair

Red Oriental shorthair
TalyaPhoto/Shutterstock

Breed overview

  • Energy: Medium to high
  • Weight: Males 5 – 5.5 kg (11 – 12.1 lbs), females 4.5 – 5 kg (9.9 – 11 lbs)
  • Colours: All colours and patterns, blue (grey) is the most well recognised
  • Grooming: Weekly
  • Other names: Foreign shorthair

About

The oriental shorthair is essentially a non-pointed Siamese. The breed was developed by breeders in the United Kingdom who wanted to create a Siamese-type cat in different coat colours while maintaining the same modern Siamese type head with large ears and a long slender body that tapers to a whiplike tail.

Personality

Orientals have a similar personality to their Siamese cousin but are generally less intense. They are friendly, confident, outgoing, extremely intelligent and sociable. Unlike the Siamese who often form a strong bond with one member of the family, the oriental shorthair doesn’t tend to play favourites. This makes them the ideal family pet for families with children and other pets.

Appearance

Oriental shorthairs have a long, muscular and tubular body with long, slender legs, oval paws and a long, tapering tail. The head forms an equilateral triangle, with good width between the ears and narrowing to a fine muzzle.  Orientals have a straight nose, free from a stop or dip. Ears are large, pricked and wide at the base, continuing the lines of the wedge. Eyes are oriental in shape and slant towards the nose.

7. Persian

How did Persian cats get a flat nose?
Seregraff/Shutterstock

Breed overview

  • Energy: Low
  • Weight: Males 5-6 kg (11-13 lbs), females 4-5 kg (8.8-11 lbs)
  • Colours: All colours and patterns except chinchilla and pointed
  • Grooming: Daily
  • Other names:  Iranian cat, Shirazi cat, Shiraz cat

About

One of the oldest and most popular cat breeds, the history of the Persian isn’t entirely known. It is generally accepted that early cats came from Persia and Turkey. Italian traveller Pietro Della Valle is credited with introducing the first Persian cats to Europe in 1620.

Personality

The Persian is a sweet, placid and laid back cat who stays out of trouble. Their gentle and affectionate nature makes them a great cat for older children. Persians have an independent streak and are better able to cope on their own than other breeds. That’s not to say they don’t appreciate the company of their human family too.

Appearance

Persian cats are a large, robust, cobby breed with short, thick legs with large paws.  The legs are short and stocky, and the paws are large and round.

The Persian head is large and broad, with round, expressive eyes that are set wide apart; ears are small and tufted and set low on the head. The nose is short, with a stop (or break) centred between the eyes, and the overall expression is sweet and sometimes described as pansy like.

Some breeders are focusing on breeding Persians who resemble those from the past with less extreme features which are known as Traditional, Doll Face or Old Style Persians.

8. Scottish Fold

Ginger Scottish fold
Seregraff/Shutterstock

Breed overview

  • Energy: Low
  • Weight: Males 5 – 6 kg (11 – 13.2 lbs), females 4 – 5.5 kg (8.8 – 12.1 lbs)
  • Colours: All colours and patterns accepted
  • Grooming: Weekly
  • Other names:

About

The Scottish fold is the result of a spontaneous mutation in a white kitten named Susie who was born on a farm owned by Mr and Mrs McRae in Coupar Angus in Scotland. Local farmer and cat enthusiast William Ross noticed that Susie had unusual folded down ears. Susie had a litter of kittens two years later which produced two offspring with the same folded down ears. William Ross took one kitten who he named Snooks. Snooks was bred, producing more kittens with folded down ears, and a new breed was developed, which was named lop-eared cats.

London breeder Pat Turner visited the Ross’s, returning home with a male called Snowdrift. An experimental breeding programme was established, and Patricia convinced the Ross’s to change the name to fold.

Pat Turner, a London based breeder, visited the Ross’s, returning home with a male called Snowdrift. She began an experimental breeding programme with the breed. Patricia convinced the Ross’s to change the name to Fold.

Personality

Scottish folds are a well-adjusted, calm, intelligent and sociable and affectionate breed without being overly clingy. Unlike other breeds, the Scottish fold doesn’t play favourites and gets along well with everyone.

Appearance

The Scottish fold is a medium-sized and well-muscled cat with a heavy bone structure. The most prominent feature of the breed is the ears which are wide-set and point down and forwards, which gives the head and face a round appearance. This folding occurs in three levels, like an accordion:

  • Single fold
  • Double fold
  • Triple fold

Feature image: Meriluxa/Shutterstock

Author

  • Julia Wilson is the founder of Cat-World, and has researched and written over 1,000 articles about cats. She is a cat expert with over 20 years of experience writing about a wide range of cat topics, with a special interest in cat health, welfare and preventative care. Julia lives in Sydney with her family, four cats and two dogs. Full author bio