7 of the largest cat breeds in the world

Shot of two Norwegian Forest Cats stood side by side indoors, one of the largest cat breeds
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Owning one of the largest cat breeds in the world can certainly be a handful, but the love and joy you get back will always outweigh any negatives…if there are any! 

With the exception of lions, tigers, and leopards (the kind of big cats you can’t keep as a pet, no matter how much you’d want to) you may not have even realized that there are felines out there bigger than your average moggy. 

If you've ever dreamed of having a pet tiger, then these largest cat breeds are the next best thing. Confident, active, and known to bond deeply with their humans, these bigger breeds are perfect for the pet parent who wants a larger-than-life kitty to shower with love. 

1. Maine Coon

Largest cat breeds: Maine Coon cat lying on chair outside

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One of the most popular large cat breeds, the Main Coon is a truly magnificent fluff ball. Entirely devoted to and affectionate with their owners, this gentle giant can weigh up to 18 pounds. They’re known for their super-long tails as well as being playful, good with others (both of the young human and canine kind), and a love of exploring the outdoors. 

Fun fact: the Guinness World Record holder for the world’s longest cat was a Maine Coon measuring 3ft 11.2in!

2. Siberian cat

Largest cat breeds: Siberian cat

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Weighing in as much as 26 pounds, this rounded feline was born to love cuddles. Siberian cats can be the purr-fect family pet with their playful personalities and sweet demeanor. This intelligent breed has the ability to adapt to their surroundings and their water-resistant oily coats help to encourage their obsession with the water. Anyone fancy a dip?

3. Persian

Largest cat breeds: Persian cat lying on hardwood floor looking at camera

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Despite looking the part, Persian cats aren’t as large as they seem. These gorgeous kitties actually weigh roughly 12 pounds but their incredibly plush, long fur coat makes them look much larger. Persian cats are an extremely laid-back breed but they’re also very intelligent, with some owners claiming to have taught their feline tricks. Given that they have such a long coat, it will require extra grooming but, so long as this is done daily, it will be very easy to maintain.

4. Ragamuffin

Largest cat breeds: Close up of Ragamuffin cat looking into the camera

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Famous for their big, mesmerizing eyes, the Ragamuffin sports a super fluffy, almost teddy bear-like coat in a variety of colors. Weighing up to 20 pounds, this breed tends to take a little longer to mature, not reaching their adulthood until they are four years old. With a calm and easygoing nature, Ragamuffins make for great family pets that often get along with other animals - you might even be able to teach them how to play fetch, master new tricks, or walk on a leash!

5. Bengal

Largest cat breeds: Close up of Suki the Bengal cat on a boat in a lake in the Rocky Mountains

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Easily mistaken for a wild cat due to its unique, patterned coat, the Bengal can reach heights of 10 inches and weigh in at around 18 pounds. Just like you’d expect from a feline that looks like it belongs in the jungle, this breed loves to climb and will often spend their days playing and exploring. Incredibly people-oriented, this particular kitty enjoys getting involved in family activities.

6. Norwegian Forest Cat

Largest cat breeds: Norwegian Forest Cat lying on the grass

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Weighing as much as 22 pounds, the Norwegian Forest Cat is already a muscular-looking feline that sports an incredibly thick coat - making them look even bigger! Their unusual name derives from a legend about a magical cat living in the forest, who could appear and disappear in front of your very eyes. Even though one hasn’t been seen doing this since, this breed is known for being an intelligent, friendly, and extremely loyal companion.

7. Ragdoll

Largest cat breeds: Ragdoll cat standing outside in amongst potted herbs

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Adorable by name, adorable by nature. Ragdolls got their cute name because they droop into their owner’s arms when picked up, exactly how a ragdoll does. They’re incredibly cuddly, affectionate, and docile in nature, which is why they make the perfect pets for families that have young children and/or dogs. They share ancestors with the Ragamuffin, but are not the same breed - Ragdoll cats tend to have less color variation as well as oval-shaped eyes that are often blue.

Chloe Petrylak

Chloe is a freelance writer, editor, and proofreader, who has more than ten years’ experience in creating animal-focussed content. From National Geographic to Animal Planet, Chloe’s passion for creating fact-filled features all about wildlife and the environment is evident. But it’s not just wild animals that Chloe’s fascinated by. Having written more than 75 articles for PetsRadar - and having her very own four-legged friend by her side - it’s no wonder that her love of dogs (and, of course, cats) has grown exponentially.  

Her website, www.chloemaywrites.com, and social media pages - @ChloeMayWrites on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter - showcase her knowledge through daily facts and trivia tidbits. For example, did you know that snails have teeth?!