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12 Most Popular Cat Breeds in the UK in 2024 (With Pictures)

Written by: Christian Adams

Last Updated on June 14, 2024 by Catster Editorial Team

European Shorthair Cat

12 Most Popular Cat Breeds in the UK in 2024 (With Pictures)

It’s not hard to understand why cats are such popular pets once you become a cat owner, and in the UK, the desire to own a cat is gaining popularity. Today, 12.2 million cats live in the UK.

Cats are generally known for their aloof personalities but are also loving and affectionate, which makes for a good balance when it comes to owning a pet.

While each cat, like humans, will be unique, their breeds are loved for specific characteristics and temperaments that make them the best companions for families around the UK.

Let’s look at the UK’s most popular cat breeds for this year!

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The 12 Most Popular Cat Breeds in the UK

1. British Shorthair

Image Credit: FotoMirta, Shutterstock
Temperament: Affectionate, loving, sociable, loyal, tolerates being alone,
Colors: Blue-gray, black, white, red-orange, cream, beige, sable, cinnamon, fawn, lilac
Lifespan: 15–20 years
Good with: Cats, dogs, families, children, elderly

The British shorthair is not only one of the UK’s most popular breeds, but they are also a favorite all over the world. These cats as pets are relaxed and friendly and will enjoy a nap on the couch or your lap. They are cuddly companions thanks to their plush fur, large size, and affectionate personalities.

The traditional British shorthair is adorned in blue fur but comes in various colors and patterns. Their coat is vulnerable to matting, and their shedding increases seasonally, but weekly brushing can keep it under control. The British shorthair doesn’t require much physical activity, which makes them suitable for UK apartment living.

2. Bengal

Brown Bengal Cat Couch
Image Credit: cats123, Pixabay
Temperament: Affectionate, friendly, loyal, bold
Colors: Brown, silver, snow, spotted, and marbled
Lifespan: 9–15 years
Good with: Cats, dogs, families, children

Bengals are one of the UK’s most popular breeds, and it’s not hard to see why. Their gorgeous leopard-like appearance makes them appear like a wild cat, but they are anything but wild. They are playful, affectionate, and friendly cats that do great with other pets and children. They are also curious and intelligent, so they require mental stimulation through play and adventures.

Their intelligence allows them to learn new tricks quickly, and you can teach them to walk on a leash, which is ideal for UK city living and adventure in the UK countryside.

Their gorgeous coat is easy to care for, and because this breed enjoys water, they will enjoy an occasional bath.

3. Ragdoll

bicolor ragdoll cat female
Image Credit: madeinitaly4k, Shutterstock
Temperament: Gentle, calm, loving, sociable, affectionate
Colors: White, black and ebony, blue-gray, lavender-silver, cream-beige
Lifespan: 13–18 years
Good with: Dogs, cats, children, elderly

Adorable looks and a sweet, lovable temperament make Ragdolls one of the UK’s most popular breeds. They are a gentle breed that loves to cuddle, and their name comes from the fact that they go limp, like a ragdoll, when they are held. They make great family pets, get along with children, and are sociable with other pets.

They are typically easy to care for as they generally take care of their own needs, but their gorgeous coat could benefit from a wash now and then. Ragdolls can be hard to find and quite costly because they require careful breeding, but if you are blessed enough to have one as part of your family, they will provide endless love.

4. Siberian

Siberian cat on a winter walk
Image Credit: Emil Helge, Shutterstock
Temperament: Affectionate, loving, patient, playful
Colors: White, black and ebony, blue-gray, lavender-silver, cream-beige, brown, lilac, fawn
Lifespan: 8–10 years
Good with: Cats, dogs, children, elderly

As their name suggests, Siberians are native to Siberia, and their coats are weatherproof, triple-layered, and long to withstand harsh cold. With that said, owning one of these beauties requires a regular grooming routine. This breed is affectionate and loving and maintains its kitten-like personality until it’s 5 years old. They make great family pets and love spending time with their owners and children, and because of their thick coats, they make ideal pets for cold climates like the UK can experience.

The Siberian doesn’t enjoy being alone and is better suited to a home where someone is around all day.

5. Himalayan

Image Credit: BrittanyNY, Shutterstock
Temperament: Loving, gentle, intelligent, laid back
Colors: Cream, beige, tan
Lifespan: 9–15 years
Good with: Cats, dogs, children, elderly

A cross between a Siamese and a Persian creates this gorgeous Himalayan breed, and their loving and gentle personalities make them popular pets in the UK. Owners of Himalayan cats compare them to dogs, as they are easygoing, intelligent, and affectionate towards their humans.

This breed is perfect for an owner looking for a lap cat that also loves to play and is happy to be alone while you are at the office. Their coat needs the most attention; they need to be groomed daily to avoid matting and reduce the amount of fur left on your lap, but their warm coat makes them ideal for the UK’s cold climate.

6. European Shorthair

Image Credit: Isabella-Marlen, Shutterstock
Temperament: Friendly, independent, adaptable, sociable, affectionate
Colors: Brown, cinnamon, blue=gray, lavender-silver, cream, beige, tan, lilac
Lifespan: 15–20 years
Good with: Dogs, children, elderly

The European Shorthair is one of the UK’s most popular breeds and one of the oldest European breeds. They are easy to please, and with a long lifespan, they can provide love and companionship for up to 20 years. They are affectionate but not clingy, so they have the independence to spend time alone, making them ideal pets for busy families.

They are known for their big, bold eyes and short coats that are easy to maintain, as they are hygiene-conscious cats that care for their own grooming. They love to please their owners and are highly adaptable, so if you are looking for a loving, independent, and easy-to-care-for cat, the European Shorthair is a great choice.

7. Maine Coon

tortoiseshell blue smoke main coon standing outdoors
Image Credit: N Roberts, Shutterstock
Temperament: Loving, gentle, intelligent, affectionate, fun
Colors: White, black and ebony, blue-gray, cream-beige, brown, sable
Lifespan: 10–13 years
Good with: Cats, dogs, children, elderly

The Maine Coon is a majestic breed known for its large size, reaching up to 16 inches tall, but that shouldn’t fool you. They are, in fact, gentle, loving, and sweet cats that love to play and spend time with their humans. They are the largest domestic cat breed and are hugely popular in the UK. They love the company of their humans, often following them around the house, but they are also happy to be left alone at times. Although affectionate, they are not usually lap cats but will tolerate being picked up.

Their thick and shaggy coat does require some maintenance, as you can imagine. A weekly brushing will help prevent matting, and a monthly bath will spruce up their fur when it’s looking stringy and greasy.

8. Raggamuffin

Image Credit: Paul Hakimata Photography, Shutterstock
Temperament: Easygoing, loving, affectionate, playful
Colors: White, black and ebony, blue-gray, red-orange, brown, sable, lilac, fawn
Lifespan: 12–16 years
Good with: Cats, children, elderly

Ragamuffins are undemanding and affectionate, and they get along well with children and other pets. While they are large cats when fully grown, they take some time to grow and only reach full size when they reach the age of 4 or 5. They are famous for their easy-going nature and their love for their humans.

They will happily sit on your lap and tolerate animal-loving kids. While they are laid back and calm, they are also playful, but not to the extent that you will find them climbing your curtains or jumping between sofas. Their undemanding and easygoing nature makes them great companions for the elderly or anyone with mobility problems.

9. Russian Blue

Blue Russian cat on black background
Image Credit: kuban_girl, Shutterstock
Temperament: Loyal, affectionate, loving, shy,
Colors: Blue-gray
Lifespan: 15–20 years
Good with: Cats, dogs, children, elderly

Russian blues are another popular breed in the UK for their shiny blue-gray coats, and their eyes change from yellow to green over time. They are affectionate cats that form a deep bond with their owners but can be pretty shy with strangers. Give them a chance to warm up, and they will become their affectionate selves.

Russian blues thrive from routine and enjoy a predictable environment that doesn’t include many visitors. They are light shedders and are considered hypoallergenic, so they are perfect for cat lovers who suffer from allergies.

10. Siamese

Siamese cat kitten laying in basket blue eyes
Image Credit: Esin Deniz, Shutterstock
Temperament: Social, friendly, affectionate, dog-like
Colors: Brown, sable, cinnamon, cream, beige, tan, lilac, white
Lifespan: 15–20 years
Good with: Dogs, children, elderly

The Siamese is a charming and slinky breed, loved for their affectionate personalities and striking blue eyes that accompany a contrasting and beautiful coat. They are an intelligent breed that can’t get enough human affection and attract attention from whoever encounters them.

Siamese cats make great pets because they thrive on human attention; they are trusting, loving, and highly intelligent, making them easy to train. They can also be a chatty breed, making them great conversationalists. They also have a lot of energy, so they are ideal pets for someone who can provide the interaction they need.

Siamese cats can be sensitive to the cold, so they will require extra cuddles or perhaps a shared bed with their owner, which they will love.

11. Sphynx

sphynx cat
Image By: Igor Lukin, Pixabay
Temperament: Smart, curious, outgoing,
Colors: White, black, brown, red, patterned
Lifespan: 9–15 years
Good with: Cats, dogs, children

The Sphynx cat is a popular breed in the UK, but not for the usual soft fur and cute looks that cats are famous for. They are more unconventional, provoking interest with their hairless skin and regal looks. Even though this breed doesn’t make you want to reach out and stroke it, they are friendly, loving, and outgoing. They are also silly and love to entertain their audience.

The gregarious personality of a sphynx may be too much for some, but for most, they will make a great companion. Their bald bodies will appreciate clothing in cold climates, and although their hairless skin may seem simple to maintain, they need regular bathing to remove the dirt and grease that a coat would usually absorb.

12. Scottish Fold

scottish fold cat sitting
Image By: Alexander Seluyanov, Shutterstock
Temperament: Affectionate, calm, loyal, intelligent, adaptable
Colors: Lavender, silver, blue-gray, cream, beige, tan
Lifespan: 11–14 years
Good with: Cats, dogs, children, elderly

Scottish Folds are a rare breed and are irresistibly adorable. They are prized for their round heads, big eyes, and folded ears. They are sweet, affectionate, easygoing, and loyal, and while they love attention from their owners, they are also independent and not needy.

They are playful cats that will enjoy playing with kids and other pets, but their energy requirements won’t include destroying your home. Because their coat is short and dense, they are easy to groom and only require a brush every now and then.

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The most popular cat breeds in the UK are popular for a good reason, and there is sure to be one, if not all, that will live happily with you. When choosing which breed suits your family, you need to go beyond cute traits, like folded ears, and ensure you can provide an enriching and loving home environment while providing the proper care.

Featured Image Credit: JACLOU-DL, pixabay

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