There's nothing better than a big old cuddle cat -- the kind of cat that's bigger than small dogs. Not an overweight cat, but a cat who's supposed to be large and muscular. You know -- a cat who isn't fat, just big-boned.
This All-American cat isn't just big and beautiful, he's friendly and smart. Maine coons top out at about 18 pounds. That's the healthy weight -- bigger MCs might be obese. His good nature makes him a suitable pet for the whole family, even if that includes kids, dogs and fellow felines. Rather than meowing, he chirps. His long coat comes in virtually every color and pattern. While he needs regular grooming, unlike some longer-haired breeds his hair doesn't mat and he doesn't shed excessively.
If you're looking for a big cat with an exotic appearance, the Savannah's the breed for you. He's not just a big cat, but a tall one, too. The breed originated by crossing domestic felines with the African serval cat. The wilder blood gives them their leopard-like spotting. Your Savannah exhibits canine-like devotion, but more than his share of feline curiosity. He likes water, so he might join you in the tub or pool.
The ragdoll's a late bloomer, as he doesn't reach his full size and maturity until the age of 3 or 4. When he does grow up, he's a big boy, averaging between 15 and 20 pounds. Female ragdolls weigh about 5 pounds less. Ragdolls love everybody -- human, feline and canine. Ragdolls come in color points like the Siamese, along with blue eyes. However, they often have white paws and faces. Their fur is soft and doesn't shed as much as other cats. Because of their unusually kind, sweet dispositions, ragdolls should never go outside into a potentially cruel world.
Norwegian Forest Cat
"I once had a cat, or should I say, she once had me." Well, that's what John Lennon might have written about Norwegian forest cats if "Norwegian Wood" had been about a feline rather than a woman. This ancient breed weighs between 10 and 20 pounds when full-grown. While tabby is one of the most common shades, NFCs appear in a variety of colors. Your NFC is a very strong, muscular kitty. He's quite the climber. As a northern breed, expect more than the usual amount of shedding. He gets along well with other cats and dogs.
Russia's a big country, so perhaps it's fitting that one of the world's largest domestic cat breeds hails from Siberia. Male Siberians top out at approximately 26 pounds, while females are much daintier at 17 pounds. It's cold in Siberia, so this kitty has a very full, thick coat. Oil in the coat allows water-resistance, helpful if you live in a snowy climate. The Siberian's size doesn't limit his athletic ability -- he's quite agile. He's also smart and playful. The Siberian coat comes in a variety of colors and patterns.
Jane Meggitt has been a writer for more than 20 years. In addition to reporting for a major newspaper chain, she has been published in "Horse News," "Suburban Classic," "Hoof Beats," "Equine Journal" and other publications. She has a Bachelor of Arts in English from New York University and an Associate of Arts from the American Academy of Dramatics Arts, New York City.