15 white cat breeds that will melt your heart

White cat sitting on woman's stomach
(Image credit: Getty Images)

From the sweet-natured Birman to the lively Cornish Rex, white cat breeds may lack much (if any) color in their fur but they are anything but vanilla! With striking good looks and charming personalities, there's something very special about our snow-colored feline friends. 

As with all cats, white breeds vary in terms of their temperament with some being super active and in need of plenty of playtime with the best interactive cat toys and others being docile and gentle. The great thing about that is that it makes finding a breed that suits your personality and lifestyle that much easier. 

Whether you're after one of the best cats for introverts or you'd prefer a kitty with a bit more of an extroverted disposition, you're sure to find your forever fur friend in the list below. And while all-white cats are fairly rare (this requires a cat to have a gene that hides every other color or pattern in their genetic makeup), the cats we've chosen have enough white to keep all of us purists happy.

So, without further ado, discover our top picks for the best white cat breeds to keep as pets...

1. Birman

Birman cat

(Image credit: Getty Images)

An ancient breed with stunning good looks and a delightful temperament, the laid-back Birman is social, loving and brilliant with people of all ages and stages, making them a truly wonderful companion to have as part of your family. Beloved for their sparkling blue eyes and sweet natures, they're one of the most affectionate cat breeds and adore curling up on a nice warm lap! Gregarious cats that tend to get on well with other felines and dogs, the Birman isn't known for being loud but they can still be quietly chatty. 

2. Turkish Angora

Turkish Angora

(Image credit: Getty Images)

With irresistible silky fur and a long and graceful ballerina-type body, the Turkish Angora is a gorgeous cat both inside and out. Intelligent and with a regal disposition, this breed is typically white but they can also come in shades of black, red, brown and gray, as well as bicolor variations. They have striking almond-shaped eyes and while hugely social and family-orientated, they tend to form a particularly close bond with one person. 

3. Ragdoll

Ragdoll cat

(Image credit: Getty Images)

One of the most popular cat breeds in the world (and for good reason!), the Ragdoll got its name for the way it will happily go limp in your arms. This is a breed that loves to be loved, and it won't hesitate to return your attention and affection. They don't tend to vocalize much at all (which is fantastic if you're after a quiet feline friend), although they will let out a soft and sweet meow when wanting another serving of the best dry cat food or a cuddle. A gentle, docile, and people-orientated cat with a playful spirit, this loyal and devoted kitty makes a wonderful companion pet. 

4. British Shorthair

British Shorthair

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Known for its teddy-bear good looks complete with a plump round face and plush fur, the British Shorthair is a compact and powerful cat that comes in a range of colors, including white. It has a delightful temperament, managing to be both independent and affectionate, and they are very easy going, getting on famously with children, adults and seniors alike. Active without being super hyper, they'll certainly appreciate access to the best automated cat toys for when the need to play strikes, but they'll be equally happy to chill out quietly beside you when it's time to settle down for the evening.

5. Himalayan

Himalayan cat

(Image credit: Getty Images)

A cross between the Persian and the Siamese, the Himalayan is a handsome cat indeed. Their luxurious coat is long and fluffy and their creamy fur is offset by striking contrasting points of color on their ears, face, legs and tail. They are wonderfully laid-back cats with affectionate natures who are quite content to spend the day snoozing away on your lap — although don't let their chilled out and quiet temperament fool you, they'll still enjoy a good game once a day so learning how to play with a cat will help you ensure you're able to provide them with a daily dose of physical and mental enrichment. 

6. Norwegian Forest Cat

Norwegian Forest Cat

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Often adorably nickamed Wegie, the Norwegian Forest Cat is breathtakingly beautiful thanks to its lusciously long, dense and fluffy double coat that helps to keep it warm in even the coldest of conditions. Athletic and muscular cats that can weigh up to 20 pounds, this breed is friendly, calm and gentle — all the things you want in a family cat — and they're also incredibly intelligent and affectionate. While they crave human connection and attention, they're very undemanding, preferring to let their favorite people come to them. 

7. Japanese Bobtail

Japanese Bobtail

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Small in size yet super outgoing in personality, the Japanese Bobtail is an active, sweet and loving breed with a good-natured and playful demeanor. Resulting from a natural gene mutation, their bobbed tail may be kinked, straight or bent, and they come in a range of colors other than white, including black, chocolate, red and lilac. They are very sociable and agreeable cats and while they will vocalize when spoken too, they have a delightfully soft, almost melodious, voice. Curious cats who like to be involved with everything their people do, you'll want to have plenty of time on your hands if you welcome this breed into your home as they have bucket loads of energy! 

8. Persian

Persian cat

(Image credit: Getty Images)

One of the world's most beloved breeds, the Persian comes in two types — Show Persians (known for their flat faces, round eyes and thick coats) and Traditional Persians (also referred to as doll-faced Persians with less pronounced features). Either way, be prepared for a cat with a whole lot of coat! This breed is known for being the ultimate fur ball and they require daily brushing to prevent mats and tangles. Our vet's guide to brushing long-haired cats is well worth checking out if you're planning on welcoming a Persian into your family. But while they are indeed high maintenance on the grooming front, they really are little love sponges who adore giving and receiving affection, so if you're looking for a sweet, happy, low-key and curious kitty who'll love a good snuggle, this breed is well worth considering. 

9. Cornish Rex

Cornish Rex

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Notoriously cuddly (it could be because they love you so much but there's a chance they're also keen to keep warm due to their lack of fur!), the Cornish Rex is a curly-haired cutie with an athletic build and kitten-like energy that they retain throughout their adult years. They are lively and social little cats who do very well in busy, family homes with lots going on to keep them entertained, and they adore meeting new people. This breed has almost tireless energy and they love jumping and climbing, but they'll also be happy to snuggle up on your lap when they've worn themselves out!

10. Oriental Shorthair

Oriental Shorthair

(Image credit: Getty Images)

With comically large ears and sweet almond-shaped eyes, the Oriental Shorthair has earned itself the nickname "honking cat" due to the sound it makes when it wants your attention! Mischievous and inquisitive, this breed has a delightful personality that will infuse your home with fun. Highly intelligent and very active, they attach strongly and deeply to their humans and will follow you around from room to room. They thrive in all living environments from large homes to small apartments, but they hate being left alone (separation anxiety in cats is a real issue with this breed), so they require someone to be with them at all times. 

11. Turkish Van

Turkish Van

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Can you train a cat? You certainly can if they're a Turkish Van! This highly intelligent breed adores learning new skills and tricks, and because they're so active, they'll love having the extra physical and mental enrichment. With an all-white body that's broken up by flashes of color on their head and tail, the Turkish Van's coat is cashmere soft and easy to maintain. Affectionate with those they call family but definitely not lap cats, this breed will definitely be happy to receive lots of pets as long as all four of their paws remain on the floor. Eager swimmers with a love of water, don't be surprised if you find your feline friend in the kitchen sink or attempting to join you in the bath! 

12. Siamese

Siamese cat

(Image credit: Getty Images)

With eye-catching physical features and the most spirited of personalities, the color-pointed Siamese has long been a popular choice amongst people looking for a gentle yet uber-playful and vocal companion. They are incredibly intelligent and curious little creatures who are prone to getting into mischief if left unattended (although they're such a delight to have in the home that we're pretty sure you'll forgive them anything). Spunky cats who thrive on interactive play, training, and quality time with their humans, the Siamese will certainly let you know if it's not getting the attention it thinks it deserves!

13. Maine Coon

Maine Coon

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Known for its massive size (they can reach lengths of up to 40-inches), the Maine Coon is a gentle giant who's never happier than with their family. Affectionate cats that love to play and hang out with their people, this popular breed is big-boned and comes covered with ample fur, which may be any color or pattern from white to black and tortoiseshell to calico. They have large pointed ears and a long bushy tail and while their size may make you initially want to proceed with caution, one interaction with a Maine Coon and you'll quickly come to learn that this is a loving and friendly kitty with very little concept of personal space!

14. Devon Rex

Devon Rex

(Image credit: Getty Images)

A small breed that's often referred to as the poodle of the cat world, the people-orientated Devon Rex is easily recognizable thanks to their curly-coated frame. With a wonderfully happy-go-lucky nature, this intelligent breed adores its humans and is never happier than when by their side. They're known to be funny goofballs who keep their owners laughing with their cheeky and playful antics, but the most important thing to know if you want to adopt a Devon Rex is that what you're really signing up for is a little shadow. Whether you're typing away on your keyboard or reading a book, you can rest assured that your feline friend will want to get in on the action. 

15. Khao Manee

Khao Manee

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Lovingly nicknamed the 'white gem' because of their snow-colored coat and jewel-colored eyes, the Khao Manee hails from Thailand where it is seen as a symbol of good luck. A rare breed with an affectionate and bold personality, this is an outgoing breed that thrives on human attention. Loving family pets that are wonderful with children, the Khao Manee is always pleased to meet strangers and make new friends, so if yours is a home with lots of visitors, rest assured your feline friend will be perfectly at ease. 

Looking for more great kitty content? Check out these 32 ways to bond with your cat or our top 32 tips for training your cat You might also enjoy learning about the tuxedo cat.

Kathryn Williams
Freelance writer

Kathryn is a freelance writer who has been a member of the PetsRadar family since it launched in 2020. Highly experienced in her field, she's driven by a desire to provide pet parents with accurate, timely, and informative content that enables them to provide their fur friends with everything they need to thrive. Kathryn works closely with vets and trainers to ensure all articles offer the most up-to-date information across a range of pet-related fields, from insights into health and behavior issues to tips on products and training. When she’s not busy crafting the perfect sentence for her features, buying guides and news pieces, she can be found hanging out with her family (which includes one super sassy cat), drinking copious amounts of Jasmine tea and reading all the books.