The assumption from many prospective cat owners is that ragdolls are a very affectionate breed – but is this the truth?
Ragdoll cats are well-known for their loving, laid-back nature but what many potential buyers often overlook is the importance this breed places on their independence, having their own space, and being left alone from time-to-time.
They purchase a ragdoll thinking it’s going to be 24/7 cuddles, but are sometimes surprised to learn that this isn’t always the case.
Ragdoll cats are affectionate when they want to be, however it’s usually on their own terms. While ragdolls will curl up alongside you when they want company, they will also keep their distance if they want some time alone away from people. Their level of affection greatly depends on their mood.
Simply put: ragdolls enjoy affection when they want it, but are equally as happy climbing to the top of your kitchen cupboard and staying perched up there alone for hours.
Personally, I think this is what makes ragdolls such fantastic cats (and is a big reason many people own two of them).
Unlike some other breeds, which will cling to you every minute you’re at home and demand constant affection, ragdolls will join you for cuddles for a while, but sneak away when they’ve had enough and leave you to your own devices.
In this article, I’ll delve more into how affectionate ragdoll cats are (based on my own experiences) and answer some of the most common questions potential owners may have about how loving ragdolls are as a breed.
Are ragdoll cats affectionate?
Yes, ragdoll cats are very affectionate, without being clingy. When it comes to affection, ragdolls are all about quality versus quantity. While ragdolls may not show you affection for much of the day, when they finally do, they give some of the best cuddles you can hope for.
Ways ragdolls show affection include laying down next to you on the couch or bed; gently pawing at you to let you know they’re there; gently sniffing your hands or face; and even jumping into your lap and curling up in a ball.
Obviously, all ragdolls are unique – some may be more affectionate than others – but, in general, they are certainly friendly and loving.
That being said, their level of affection often differs from other breeds.
While some cats will rub up against your leg and annoy you, ragdolls will often keep to themselves until they are truly ready for a cuddle (at which point you’ll get their full attention, before they decide they’ve had enough and leave).
I love this because it means you get the best of both worlds.
You can enjoy your space at home without having your ragdoll cling to you 100 percent of the time, but you can also enjoy some really quality moments together.
Do ragdoll cats get more affectionate with age?
Yes, ragdoll cats tend to get more affectionate with age. Ragdolls have a lot more energy when they’re younger and thrive on their independence, but as they get older they’re more likely to settle down next to you for a cuddle.
As a kitten, our ragdoll, Poppie, was a little pocket rocket, always playing with toys and doing ‘zoomies’ up and down the house – something she continued to do in the first 3-4 years of her life.
However, as she’s gotten older, she’s really started to show her affectionate side more often and is extremely happy snuggling up next to us while we’re watching TV or a movie.
She’s also become a lot more tolerant to being held, which is something she didn’t like as much when she was younger.
My ragdoll isn’t very affectionate – is this normal?
Do not worry if your ragdoll cat isn’t very affectionate, as this can be quite normal with this breed. Ragdolls love their own space and won’t cling to you anywhere near as much as other breeds – it’s not because they don’t love you, it’s simply because they are independent.
Our ragdoll, Poppie, for example, can be extremely sassy at times and not want anything to do with us for the better part of a day for no apparent reason.
But her mood can change just as quickly, and all of a sudden she’ll jump up next to us on the couch, curl up for a cuddle and start purring louder than a lawnmower.
So, if your ragdoll isn’t overly affectionate with you, don’t stress – there will come a time where they crave some affection and will seek you out for a cuddle.
That being said, if your ragdoll is extremely withdrawn or agitated across a number of days, it could be signs that something else is wrong.
If this occurs, I would recommend getting them checked out at your local vet to ensure there are no hidden health issues causing their unusual mood.
Are ragdoll cats affectionate as kittens?
Ragdolls kittens aren’t as affectionate as adult ragdolls, yet are still very loveable and fun to play with. Ragdoll kittens are extremely inquisitive, have bright personalities and are extremely intelligent, making them great companions for any owner.
Naturally, kittens are more dependent than adult cats, so will rely on their owners more to be fed, kept warm and cleaned up after.
They are also less strong, meaning it’s harder for them to escape your grasp when you hold and cuddle them compared to fully-grown ragdolls (who will wriggle free when they’ve had enough).
All that being said, ragdoll kittens are super fun to be around and are very affectionate and loving in their own way – but are far more active and less relaxed than when they reach adulthood.
You’ll find it harder to get a ragdoll kitten to sit quietly next to you while you watch a movie, compared to an adult ragdoll, for example.
Do ragdoll cats like to snuggle and cuddle?
Yes, ragdoll cats love to snuggle and cuddle – so long as it’s on their own terms. Ragdolls are a very independent breed of cat who like having their own space, but will show you affectionate when they’re ready to.
For most of the day, it’s likely you’ll hardly lay eyes on your ragdoll – they’ll either be sleeping on the end of a bed or in their scratching post complex, or even at the top of a cupboard (as they love climbing into high places).
But when they do decide to rejoin you in front of the TV or once you’ve hopped into bed, it’s likely they’ll snuggle up next to you for a few hours and show you plenty of affectionate.
This is usually when our ragdoll, Poppie, will come out of her hiding spot and be in the mood for a cuddle.
Essentially, the takeaway message is this: you can’t force a ragdoll cat to show you affectionate, as they do things on their own terms.
Instead, they will seek you out when they’re wanting affection and show you plenty of love when they’re in the mood for it.
If you’re looking for a cat breed that is loveable, warm and cuddly, but still gives you plenty of space, then ragdolls are the perfect choice.