What are the best indoor cat breeds that are suitable for first-time owners? Some cats are easier to look after than others while others need a lot of time effort and attention given to them. This may mean simply playing with them or constant grooming. They may need to be with someone all the time while others are more independent. Each cat breed is different and some fit more easily into the life of an indoor cat than others.
There are several traits that cats that are suited to beginner cat owners and also easy to adapt to or should be indoor cats. This includes such cats as the Scottish Fold, Burmese Cat, American Shorthair cat, The Cornish Rex and many more that are included in this post.
The list below is not in a best to worst order as each type of cat has its own advantages and disadvantages that will appeal to different people. I am not an expert on every breed of cat so this is a general introduction to each breed. If you like one it would be worth going into further depth on that breeds specific needs before your final decision.
Best Indoor Cat Breeds For First-Time Owners
Where possible I have included a general picture as a guideline. Many breeds come in different colors and variations. Also, if you are getting kittens they may not have the same color fur or eyes as a kitten as they will have as a mature cat.
I have chosen this list with several things in mind. How suited the cat is to be indoors all the time (maybe with some outside access, how friendly and loving the cat is, how social it is and for the most part how much maintenance is required when looking after the cat.
It’s worth noting though that each cat is different and so are its circumstances so there are variations within any breed mentioned.
The American Shorthair Cat
This cat is relatively friendly and easygoing and will make a great family cat. Yet he retains some of his independent nature. He is fairly confident with strangers although of course, this depends on the individual cat. As a rule, they also tend to be quite placid.
He is intelligent and likes to play interactive games.
They are also good with other animals in the household like cats & Dogs
The American Shorthair as the name implies has a short coat and comes in a variety of colors this includes one of my favorites, the silver tabby. They also come in the usual tabby bicolor, tortoiseshell, and one color.
They can also have a variety of eyes colors including Green, Hazel, Copper & Blue etc. I read on Vetstreet that is can have up to 80 color patterns, which is huge.
Shedding is moderate so he will need some grooming to keep his coat in tip-top condition. During shedding season you will need to do a daily brushing.
The American Shorthair cat is mid to larger sized cat and is also quite a stocky cat at around 3-5.5KG (7 – 12 lb).
Can it be alone?
He is not as demanding for attention as some of the other indoor breeds and is more independent so some alone time should be OK.
They can live into their 20s which is a good age for a cat.
The Cornish Rex
Friendly – temperament Social with other animals
They are usually quite friendly and will fit in well with a family that includes other animals ie dogs or other cats.
They love to play in much the same way as other cats. They love to play with toys and play catch. With patience, you can also train them.
Due to their social nature, they are better suited to families and not being kept alone. They love to be with you as much as they can.
Colour of the Coat
They have adorable large eyes that come in a range of colors and shades like Blue, green, gold etc
They also have a range of coat colors that include Chestnut, Chocolate, White, Black Blue, Lavender etc
Because of its unusual fur which is crimpled and curly, the Cornish Rex does not need much in the way of brushing, in fact, brushing can damage its fur. You may need to oil regularly and they will need a regular bath.
Because it is an indoor cat you will also need to clip its claws regularly.
This cat has to be an indoor cat because of its fur. It cannot keep warm so it cannot be an outdoor cat.
They are a medium-sized cat that weighs from just over 6-10 lb (3 to 4.5kg)
They can live from between 9 and 15 years old.
The Cornish Rex is a fairly new breed having only been around from the 1950s and of course were created in Cornwall.
The Russian Blue
Friendly/Social with other animals
There is something very elegant and refined about the Russian Blue cat. These beautiful quiet cats thrive on an exact routine in all things from feed time to bedtime and they do not thrive on a variety of any sort. In spite of this they are extremely affectionate cats for their owners and although highly intelligent they are much less demanding than other breeds. They will often attach themselves to a particular person.
They love to play and explore interactive games which are perfect for stimulating their mind.
They are good around all ages form the young to the old. Although they do need their own private spaces in which to hide. They are easily startled by sudden noise or movement so although they are good around children they may struggle with energetic or loud children.
They do like to have outside time if they can but they also work well as indoor cats.
Russian blues have beautiful short coats with a soft undercoat. This does need to be groomed regularly. They have the most amazing emerald eyes and their fur is dark blue-grey. They can also come in various lighter shades of grey and you can also get a Russian White cat and a Russian Black one.
These are a medium-sized cat weighing around 3.5 to 7kg or 8 to 15 lbs.
Can it be alone?
Russian blues can be left alone for a few hours as they are quite independent and will entertain themselves if they need to.
The Sphynx Cat
It can be difficult to see the color in a Sphynx cat but they do come in a range of colors which include, tabby, black, tortoise, calico and bicolor etc.
Is it Friendly & Social With People & Other Animals
They are really friendly and social cats that have loads of energy and love to play with other cats and also humans. They are best placed with families with older children.
They also like to climb so will need to have lots of places they can climb up on. They are also true catnappers and love to snuggle in lots of different places. They are also great lap cats.
They are very intelligent cats and because of this, they do need lots of interaction and things to keep them busy.
Can The Sphynx Be Alone?
These cats are not to be left on their own. They don’t even like being left alone for a short space of time. They really need human contact and interaction at all times.
What about their Coats and Grooming?
Sphynx cats need little in the way of grooming because they have virtually no fur. They are in fact covered in it but because it is only a soft down it looks like they are not. They feel a bit like a fuzzy warm peach to touch.
As with other breeds of cats with little fur to groom The Sphynx needs to still be cared for by making sure any folds do not have a build up of oils. They also need to be washed gently regularly.
Are they Talkative
They are not very talkative cats.
How Bit are they?
The Sphynx is a medium-sized cat and weigh about 3.5 – 7.0kg (7.7lb-15lb).
What is their Life Span?
The Sphynx cat can live to about 13-15 years old if it is well looked after.
Are Korat Cats Friendly?
The Korat is a friendly and energetic cat who likes to be around his humans. He does tend to attach himself to one or two people though and show a preference for them. He also likes to follow you around.
The Korat love to play however he is also very possessive of his toys.
Coat/Colour & Grooming
The Korat has a beautiful blue-grey coat with silver tips and fully adult cats have large green eyes.
Because they have short fur they do not need much in the way of grooming.
Is the Korat Talkative?
The Korat cat is a highly vocal cat who likes to chat but can also be quiet at times.
How Big Are they?
This cat is a medium-sized cat of about 3 to 4.5 KG (6 to 10 lb)
Are They Social With Other Animals
Yes, it can be and likes the company of other animals however it also likes to be and expects to be top cat.
Can They Be Alone?
Ideally no, as the Korat is not a loner he prefers the company of his humans.
What is the Korats Lifespan?
It can live between 10 and 15 years
The Scottish Fold
They make great indoor cats and love to be indoors although they are happy for some outside time.
Are They Friendly
Scottish folds are calm cats with a friendly nature that love a good bit of lap time. They are loyal and loving and will bond with their humans. They will follow you about the house. They do also like to play sometimes. They prefer more sedate play.
All about Coat & Colour
Scottish folds have short thick density packed fur that comes in several colors this include solid, parti-color, Tabby, Bicolor, and tabby and white. You can also get longer hair varieties. The shorter haired cats need less grooming.
And of course, they are famous for that lovely bent over ears which are adorable. Although sadly not all have them.
Are They Talkative Cats?
Although as a rule, they are quite cats and not very talkative you do get some that are.
What is Their Size & Weight?
Scottish fold cats are a medium sized cat with a weight range of around 3.5-5.8 kg (7.7-13 lbs) depending on if it is a male or female cat.
Can They Be Left Alone?
They do become quite sad and withdrawn if they do not have any attention. They thrive on company and easily adapt to any new family members be it pet or human.
What is the Life Expectancy of a Scottish Fold?
They have a life expectancy of around 12 to 15 years.
The Siamese Cat
The Burmese Cat
Burmese cats are really friendly and outgoing cats that make great family pets. They are great with well-behaved children of all ages.
They have a sort coat which has little shedding and is easy to look after they come in several different colors which include the following:
Lilac, Red, Chocolate, Cream, Lilac Tortie, Brown Tortie, Blue Tortie, Brown, Blue & Chocolate Tortie.
Yes, the Burmese is a highly talkative cat.
They are about 3 to 5 KG (6.6 lb to 11 lb)
Social with other animals
They can be social with some other animals if they have been introduced properly.
Can it be alone?
They really need to be with someone at all times or they can become bored and cause issues.
While the Burmese can be a beginner cat they are more challenging than some of the other cat breeds due to the amount of attention they need and their need to be with you at all times and their energy levels. If you want a cat that you don’t do much with these cats are not for you as they will need to be played with and have lots of activities as they are highly intelligent cats.
They are also prone to becoming tubby as they will overeat given the chance.
Are They Friendly Cats?
The Ocicat is a domestic cat that has a lovely nature and is totally devoted to his humans and is quite a friendly cat, but he is not clingy and will confidently insert himself into your home and your hearts
They will love to play and join in with everything.
Coat & Colour
Ocicats come in up to 12 lovely colors and have stunning spotted tight short fur. Although they do also come in solid, stripes, pointed and ticked tabby designs. (A ticked pattern is when you have one dominant pattern that you can see from far off and another one with a distinct tick shape when you move closer to the cat)
Their coat colors include Black silver, Lavender, Chocolate silver, Lavender silver, Fawn silver, Cinnamon silver, Tawny, Chocolate, Cinnamon, Blue and, Fawn, Blue silver
Grooming is middle of the road for these cats they will need some grooming which also includes claw clipping and teeth cleaning.
What is Their Weight?
Ocicats are a medium to a large cat that weighs about 2.7KG -6.3 KG (6–14 lb) depending on whether you have a male or female cat.
Can it be alone?
The Ocicats loves to have lots of company and although it can be left alone for short amounts of time it is best not to as they are highly intelligent cats and will get bored, just like children bored Ocicats will get up to trouble.
While you can easily have an Ocicat as a new cat owner they are much more time consuming and demand more than your average domestic cat.
They have a good life expectancy of over 15 years.
I like a Couple of These Breeds What Should I do Next?
I would do further research on a breed specific site or find a reputable breeder to ask more about them. If you do not want to breed and are happy to just have a family pet you could consider checking out the cat charities in your area to see if they have any breed specific cats in. There are even breed specific charities for homeless cats in some areas. Even posh cats can be made homeless.
If you are looking for specific traits and not worried about a breed it may be that the charity can help you with a cat that fits those traits but may not be a specific breed.
The moggie has as much love to give as anyone and may be just what you are looking for.