12 Cat Breeds for First-Time Owners

Written by: Ejay C
A college graduate with a degree in Electrical Engineering, Ejay has a diverse background that combines technical expertise with a passion for pets and is now one of the content writers at IHD. Read more
| Published on November 20, 2023

Choosing the right cat breed is crucial for first-time owners. A cat’s breed can significantly influence its behavior, maintenance requirements, and compatibility with your lifestyle. This article highlights twelve cat breeds ideal for first-time owners, focusing on their temperament, care needs, and why they make great companions for those new to pet ownership.

1. Domestic Shorthair

Domestic Shorthairs are a popular choice for first-time owners due to their adaptable and easygoing nature. These cats are not a specific breed but a mix, often resulting in a robust health profile and a friendly disposition. Their short coats require minimal grooming, and they tend to get along well with children and other pets, making them a practical and loving addition to any household.

2. Ragdoll

Ragdolls are known for their docile and affectionate temperament. They are often described as “puppy-like” because they enjoy following their owners and participating in family activities. Ragdolls have a plush, semi-long coat that requires regular grooming, but their laid-back nature and tendency to be easily handled make them a joy for first-time cat owners.

3. British Shorthair

British Shorthairs are renowned for their calm and undemanding nature. They are independent yet affectionate, making them ideal for owners who work during the day. These cats have a dense coat that requires minimal grooming and are known for their robust health. Their easygoing personality and low-maintenance grooming needs make them an excellent choice for novices.

4. Maine Coon

Maine Coons, one of the giant domesticated cat breeds, are famous for their friendly and pleasant nature. They are intelligent and playful, making them great companions. Despite their size and long coat, Maine Coons are relatively easy to care for, as they enjoy being brushed and are generally healthy. Their dog-like characteristics make them ideal for first-time owners looking for a more giant, interactive pet.

5. Siamese

Siamese cats are known for their vocal and affectionate nature. They crave interaction and form strong bonds with their owners. These cats have short coats that require minimal grooming and are known for their striking blue eyes and pointed coat pattern. Siamese cats are good for those who want a communicative and engaging feline friend.

6. American Shorthair

American Shorthairs are known for their gentle and easygoing temperament. They are adaptable, making them suitable for various living environments, including apartments. Their short coat is low maintenance and generally healthy with a good lifespan. This breed is perfect for first-time owners seeking a laid-back and affectionate cat.

7. Scottish Fold

Scottish Folds are recognizable by their unique folded ears. They are known for their sweet and calm demeanor, making them great lap cats. These cats are moderately active and enjoy playing but are also content to relax beside their owners. Their coat requires regular grooming, but their loving and gentle nature makes them worthwhile for first-time owners.

8. Exotic Shorthair

Exotic Shorthairs are essentially the short-haired version of Persians and share many of their traits. They are quiet, affectionate, and enjoy lounging around the home. Their short coat is easier to maintain than the Persian’s long hair, making them an excellent option for those who love the Persian look but prefer a lower-maintenance cat.

9. Burmese

Burmese cats are known for their affectionate and playful nature. They thrive on human interaction and are good with children and other pets. Their short, sleek coat requires minimal grooming. Burmese cats are ideal for first-time owners who want an interactive and loving pet.

10. Norwegian Forest Cat

Norwegian Forest Cats are large, robust cats with a gentle and friendly disposition. They are independent yet affectionate, and their thick coat requires regular grooming, especially in the shedding season. Their calm and adaptable nature makes them suitable for various households with children and other pets.

11. Russian Blue

Russian Blues are known for their elegant appearance and gentle temperament. They are often shy with strangers but deeply affectionate with their family. Their short, dense coat is low maintenance and is known for being clean and quiet. Russian Blues are suitable for first-time owners who prefer a more reserved but loving companion.

12. Sphynx

The Sphynx, known for its lack of fur, is an excellent choice for those allergic to cat hair. They are affectionate and energetic and love being the center of attention. Despite their lack of fur, they require regular bathing to remove skin oils. Sphynx cats are perfect for first-time owners looking for a unique, interactive, and hypoallergenic pet.


Choosing the right cat breed is essential for a harmonious relationship between pet and owner. Each of these twelve breeds offers unique qualities that make them suitable for first-time owners. Whether you prefer a playful and active cat or a calm and independent companion, there is a breed on this list that will fit your lifestyle and provide years of joy and companionship.