The 9 Best Cat Breeds for First-Time Pet Owners

Cats make wonderful companions. Not only are they totally cuddle-worthy, cats are relatively independent and easy to integrate into the home — perfect for first-time pet owners. That said, some breeds are more suited to newbies than others.

Just dipping your toes into this whole “pet owner thing?” You’ll want to choose a cat that has an easy going personality, requires little grooming and is low risk for hereditary health problems. So, to help you in your search, we’ve put together a list of the nine very best cat breeds for first-time pet owners — one for each life!

Cute Kitten curled up on basket

1. Burmese

Attention seeking and loyal, the Burmese cat wants nothing more than to be by your side — playing, cuddling, it doesn’t matter! Some consider them the social butterfly of the cat world, making them a wonderful family pet or first cat. Really, they’re the package deal!

2. Chartreux

The Chartreux has a truly majestic history. Originating from ancient Persia with ties back to medieval French monasteries, these cats have a happy personality and a love for people. Chartreux also have an iconic “chirp,” which you’re likely to notice as they watch birds from the window.

Cute Persian Munchkin cat, in white and grey color, playing a cat toy.

3. Munchkin

Short on the leg side, but definitely not on character, these cute little cats are loved by many the world over. Dubbed the “Kitty Corgi” by Munchkin lovers, they are surprisingly agile, love to be handled and super easy going. Plus, they love to learn tricks! Fun, right?

4. Devon Rex

Another unique breed, the Devon Rex has an elfish look and a personality to match! Frequently compared to poodles, the Devon Rex will be devoted to you from day one (like you will be to them) and remain kittens at heart, always.

Labrador puppy  and maine coon cat

5. Maine Coon

Thought to be the oldest cat breed native to the Americas, Maine Coons are social, friendly felines with a loyalty that will melt any heart. If you’re used to dogs, but want to bring a cat into the family, a Maine Coon might be right for you. They have even been known to play fetch!

6. Siamese

Siamese are iconic for a reason. Endlessly curious and sharp-witted, Siamese are perfect for those who desire a pet who will stay engaged, no matter what. Bonus: they have very short, smooth coats, so no grooming required.

Playful cute maine coon calico cat closeup lying down on carpet floor indoor house living room by couch sofa

7. Norwegian Forest Cat

With a lush fur coat and disposition suited to the extremely harsh winter climates of Scandinavia, you might be surprised to hear the Norwegian Forest Cat actually makes a wonderful domestic breed. Much like Maine Coons, they are tall, sturdy pets with bushy tails, but have more calm, self-sufficient personalities. You’ll know what is right for you!

8. Somali

These active cats love being the center of attention (and they deserve it!). Super interactive, the Somali loves to solve puzzles and play as long as possible. They can even be trained in agility activities!

Cute ragdoll kitten

9. Ragdoll

Looking for a cat who is easy going and relaxed? You may have found your match! Ragdolls were named for their snuggling tendencies and good nature, making them a lovely choice for families with young children. Plus, they have the most gorgeous baby blue eyes.

Finding your pet

Each of these breeds would be a wonderful choice for a first-time pet owner. But don’t worry if you can’t find one at your local animal shelter! Standout breed characteristics are still likely show up in adoptable mixes. Besides, what really matters is that you have a connection with them and can see them fitting into your family.


Paula A
Past Member 2 months ago

Thank you for sharing

Caitlin L
Past Member 2 months ago

Thank you

Donna T
Donna T2 months ago

thank you

Jan S
Jan S2 months ago

thank you for sharing

Shirley S
Shirley S2 months ago

Rescue cats are the best !

Janis K
Janis K2 months ago

Thanks for sharing.

Ann B
Ann B2 months ago

no one should ever declaw--if you get a pet--you need to WANT AND LOVE doesnt come 1st

Chrissie R
Chrissie R2 months ago

Please don't BUY...while millions in our shelters DIE!!!

Pearl W
Pearl W2 months ago

Hi All - Someone who has never had any pets before should NOT get 9 cats! - smiles

Just kidding - Giving the kitty litter a stir - Thanks for all the beaut pics - More smiles

Jessica K
Jessica K2 months ago

I don't know for sure what breed my cat is, but if anything she's a Bombay mix and I'm glad we rescued her. She is a joy. Thanks.