Himalayan Cat vs Ragdoll

Most everyone loves cats. There is just something truly special about these animals that make us humans go wild for them! In the world of cats, some breeds reign supreme.

Himalayan and Ragdoll cats are both popular breeds, and people sometimes confuse the two. We are here to discuss the differences between these two cat breeds so you can easily tell them apart and decide which one to bring into your home.

Himalayan and Ragdoll cats
Himalayan and Ragdoll cats

Key takeaways

  • Himalayan and Ragdoll cats are similar in appearance.
  • Both breeds are somewhat new and have only been around for 60-70 years.
  • Himalayan and Ragdoll cats have differences in appearance between the face and eyes.
  • Both breeds are born white and develop their colors over the first few weeks.
  • Most Himalayan cats are smaller than Ragdolls.
  • Himalayan cats have longer coats compared to Ragdolls.
  • Both cat breeds have calm and gentle demeanors. They are great family pets.
  • Himalayan cats have greater health risks compared to ragdolls.

Similarities Between Himalayans and Ragdolls

Because Ragdolls and Himalayans are very similar in appearance, many people mistakenly believe they are the same cat breed.

First, we will talk about how they are alike so you can better understand the contrasts between the two cat breeds.

Both cat breeds are known for their stunningly beautiful blue eyes. Both of these cat breeds also have long fur that is very thick.

While to the untrained eye, they appear alike, there are some major differences between these cats.

What Are Ragdolls?

The reason Ragdoll cats got their name is that they go completely limp when picked up by anyone. These cats flop, making them look like ragdolls.

The Ragdoll breed originated in the 1960s in California. Breeder Ann Baker is the one given credit for breeding this beautiful cat.

Ragdoll cat with blue eyes
Ragdoll cat

What Are Himalayans?

Both Ragdolls and Himalayans are newer breeds, only having been around for a few decades. This cat breed was developed in the 1950s by crossing a Siamese cat with a Persian cat.

These cats have become increasingly popular over the years because of their sweet temperament. These cats are lovingly called “Himmies.”

Himalayan cat

Key Differences Between Himalayan Cats and Ragdoll Cats

When learning about these two cat breeds, understanding the differences will help you better appreciate each one and choose the one that will be a perfect addition to your home.

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We will discuss each of the differences in detail to help you differentiate between these two beautiful breeds.

Differences in Face and Body Appearance

One of the first and most obvious differences is in appearance. While Himalayans and Ragdolls are very similar in the way they look, keen observers can tell differences between the two breeds.

There are some slight contrasts in the facial features of these two cats. A Ragdoll has a more triangular-shaped face. Himalayans have a rounder face.

Ragdoll cats have oval-shaped eyes, while Himalayans have round eyes. Himalayans also sometimes have a bit of a flat face, often referred to as a peke face. It is important to note that Himalayans also sometimes have doll faces.

Himalayans have short bodies and thick legs. While the Ragdoll is also heavily boned, it has longer legs and a longer body than the Himalayan.

Himalayan and Ragdoll cat faces
Himalayan and Ragdoll cat faces

Differences in Colors

An interesting fact about both of these cat breeds is that they are born completely white. These cats do not develop their color patterns in the womb. They will begin developing the color patterns on their legs during the first few weeks of life.

The following colors and patterns occur in both breeds. Because of their similar colors and patterns, many people have trouble distinguishing between these two breeds.

Common Colors For Himalayans and Ragdolls

  • Seal
  • Blue
  • Chocolate
  • Lilac
  • Flame
  • Cream

Common Patterns For Himalayans and Ragdolls

  • Bi-Color
  • Colorpoint
  • Mitted
  • Lynx
  • Tortie
Himalayan and Ragdoll cat appearance
Himalayan and Ragdoll cat appearance

Differences In Size

There are also some key differences in the size of Himalayans and Ragdoll cats. Most Himalayans are smaller than Ragdolls. On average, Himalayans weigh between 6 – 12 pounds, while Ragdolls average between 15 – 20 pounds.

Differences in Coats

You will also notice a significant difference between the coats of Himalayans and Ragdolls. Consider the following distinctions


Ragdoll cats have medium-long fur that is similar in texture to rabbit fur. A Ragdoll’s fur is very silky and smooth.


The Himalayan cat has a longer coat that is very dense but has a soft and downy texture. Because of their very thick fur, these cats appear larger than they actually are in their bodies.

Unlike Ragdolls, Himalayans have an undercoat. With the undercoat of these cats, you can expect a lot more shedding. Overall, Himalayans require a lot more daily grooming than Ragdolls.

Differences in Personality

You are also going to notice differences in personality if you hang around these two cat breeds for a long period of time. First, we will discuss the similarities in personality.

Himalayan cat receiving a treat

Both cats are very gentle and have a calm demeanor. Both cats do well with other cats and children because they are both social.

There is one key difference in the personalities of these two cats. Himalayans do not mind being alone as much as Ragdolls.

If you plan on adopting one of these cats, make sure they have a companion so they do not suffer from loneliness that could lead to undesirable behaviors.

Differences in Voice

Of the two cat breeds, Himalayans are much more vocal. Himalayans talk much like Siamese cats so you will hear a lot of conversations throughout the day.

Differences in Health

Finally, we also need to discuss the differences in health. When it comes to health, Ragdolls suffer from fewer risks.

Himalayans are prone to developing severe hereditary and congenital conditions as a result of their flat faces. These cats often develop respiratory and eye conditions.

Which Cat Breed Is Right For You?

When deciding between Himalayans and Ragdolls, many people have trouble. Because both cats are so similar, it often comes down to personal preference.

No matter which of these cat breeds you select, you will find them loveable and a perfect addition to your home. Adopt from a reputable breeder to ensure you bring a healthy cat into your home.

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