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Origin, Temperament, Colours & Patterns
The Late Ann Baker of California is the attributed breed founder of Ragdolls and it is well documented that the breed began in the 1960's ( the first Ragdolls were registered in the summer of 1965) with a white Persian or Angora type cat named Josephine, mated to a Sacred Cat of Burma (Birman type cat ) whose subsequent offspring were then crossed with a sable Burmese type cat. It must be remembered that long haired cats in the sixties were generally regarded as persians although the persian breed is considerably different today. It is generally agreed that Josephine was a free running cat Owned by Mrs Pennels, a neighbour of Anns. Josephines life took a dramatic change after she was involved in an automobile accident. At some point Josephine was hit by a car and she laid by the curb for 2 days before being found and taken to a local university hospital and nursed back to health. This accident imparted upon her kittens (according to Ann Baker) a high tolerance for pain and the ability to go limp when held. ( We feel that it must be noted however that Ragdolls feel pain just like any other cat . Ragdolls DO NOT have a high tolerance for pain)
The following is an excerpt from the definitive guide to Ragdolls--- 'At the time Ann Baker had been borrowing one of Josephines older sons to sire progeny in her black persian breeding program. This son had the appearance of a Black /Brown Persian and she named him Blackie, and it was on one of her visits to borrow him that she saw Blackies brother. He had the appearance of a Sacred Cat of Burma, (The Birman breed). Having already established the owners trust , she was also permitted to borrow this cat to mate with her own females . She was most taken with this son of Josephine and named him Raggedy Ann Daddy Warbucks. What Ann clearly states is that Blackie and Daddy Warbucks are both sons of Josephine, but with different sires. In the *irca* booklet it would appear to indicate that Blackies father was a "black cat from the east', that appeared "more Persian than Burmese". During detailed questioning , Ann confirmed that no-one had ever seen the father of Daddy Warbucks and he was the only kitten in that particular litter of Josephine's. This being so, makes it difficult to take the origins of the breed further.'--- *IRCA* ( International ragdoll cat association) was Ann Bakers own association and is not recognized by the major cat associations.
Ragdolls are large, imposing cats. They are slow-maturing, and do not reach full maturity until approximately 3-4 years of age. Females are smaller than males, weighing about 10-15 pounds on average. Males weigh an average of 12-20 pounds as adult neuters, although some may grow to be larger.
Ragdolls have large, blue, slightly oblique eyes. The ears are medium in size and are set wide with a slight forward tilt, well furnished and rounded at the tip. The nose should be medium in length and have a gentle dip and slightly retrousse at the tip. The cheeks should be well developed.
The Ragdoll has a dense semi longhair coat and bushy tails which should at least reach the shoulders and tapered at the tip. Once Ragdolls reach maturity they should have a ruff around the neck and knickerbockers. The fur is easily combed, and requires occasional grooming.
Ragdoll kittens are born all white and slowly develop colour. The colour continues to deepen as the cat ages.
Ragdolls are accepted in 3 patterns and 4 colours. The three patterns are "Colourpoint," "Mitted," and "Bi-colour":
A "Colourpoint" is a pointed cat, ears, mask, tail and feet all darker than the rest of their body. The nose leather and paw pads match the point colour. Colourpoints do not have white markings .
A "Mitted" has points similar to a colourpoint, but also has white "mitts" on the front paws and white back legs and feet, preferably up to or above the hock at the back. The mitted also should have a white chin, ruff and underbody from chin to tail, the nose leather should be the colour of the points and the paw pads should be pink. Also occasionally a white nose blaze and very rarely a white tip to the tail which was in the original Ragdolls bred by Ann Baker.
A "Bi-colour" has the points on its mask, ears and tail, the mask is interrupted by an inverted "V" of white starting at the forehead and continuing down the face and extending over the whisker pads and chin. The legs and underbody from chin to tail should all be white. Bi-colours have pink nose leather and paw pads.
There are four traditional colours which are "Seal", "Blue" ,"Chocolate" and "Lilac", although the latter two colours are more rare .
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