The 10 Cheapest Cat Breeds Money Can Buy


Pedigree cats tend to be much more expensive than their non-pedigreed counterparts. However, some are more expensive while others are less expensive. As a result, those who don’t want to over-spend while buying a pedigree cat should look into the cheapest cat breeds. Most of these cat breeds should be very familiar to interested individuals. Here are what Hepper claims to be the 10 most affordable cat breeds out there:

10. Oriental Shorthair – $400 to $500

In the 19th century, Europeans brought a cat landrace from Thailand to the United Kingdom. There, cat breeders used the cat landrace to create several new cat breeds that now exist worldwide. One of those is the Oriental Shorthair.

Physically, Oriental Shorthairs look like their Siamese relatives. They have a triangular head with huge ears. Furthermore, they have a long, slender body that is nonetheless well-muscled. Oriental Shorthairs show a much more comprehensive range of colors and patterns than their Siamese counterparts. There are hundreds of combinations that are acceptable for the cat breed. Something that is very much not true for the Siamese.

Unsurprisingly, the Oriental Shorthair’s personality is similar to that of its Siamese relatives as well. Generally speaking, these cats are smart and sociable, thus making these cats an excellent choice for people who want a feline companion to spend time with them. This is particularly true because Oriental Shorthairs often remain playful into adulthood.

Interested individuals should know that the Oriental Shorthair can overlap with other cat breeds descended from the original cat landrace from Thailand. For example, the Havana Brown is sometimes considered a variant of the Oriental Shorthair rather than an independent cat breed in its own right. Similarly, the Oriental Shorthair is sometimes considered one-half of a whole with the Oriental Longhair. The two cat breeds are called thus for exactly the reason that most people would expect, which is to say, they have different hair lengths.

9. Himalayan – $300 to $1,250

Himalayan Cat

The Himalayan cat is an excellent example of how cat breeds often have no connection to the places they are named after. If one were to name it for its place of origin, The Spruce says that it should be called the American cat rather than the Himalayan cat. Instead, the Himalayan cat is named thus because it looks like the Himalayan rabbit.

Those who have no idea what a Himalayan rabbit looks like should know that said creatures are white-furred for the most part but have colored points. Besides that, they have a cylinder-shaped body that stretches about 3.5 head lengths when laid out. Something that no other rabbit can claim. Himalayan cats look like that because they were created by crossbreeding the Persian cat with the Siamese cat. As such, they are sometimes considered a variant of either one progenitor or the other.

Regardless, Himalayan cats make popular pets for several reasons. First, they tend to have gentle personalities. Second, they are cuddlers that enjoy naps more than playtime. Third, they are extremely fluffy. Of course, Himalayan cats do have their downsides. One would be how their thick coat requires extra maintenance. Another would be how their thick coat makes it hard to tell how they are doing. Fortunately, these issues should be manageable.

8. Tonkinese – $250 to $1,000


Tonkin is an exonym for northern Vietnam. By this point, it should be unsurprising to learn that the Tonkinese has no real connection with the region. After all, the cat breed was created by breeding the Siamese with the Burmese. Curiously, the existence of the Tonkinese predates the official recognition of the Tonkinese by a considerable margin. This is because the founder of the American variant of the Burmese was a Siamese and Burmese crossbreed rather than a pure Burmese. Thanks to that, the Tonkinese existed well before two cat breeders started producing Siamese and Burmese crossbreeds later in the 20th century.

In any case, those cat breeders intended the Tonkinese to embody the best of its progenitors. Naturally, they feature a mix of characteristics from both the Siamese and the Burmese. For instance, the Tonkinese is neither as slender as the Siamese and the British Burmese nor as substantial as the American Burmese. Temperament-wise, they tend to be active, curious, and playful. These characteristics tend to be considered positive. Despite that, they also make it easier for the Tonkinese to become bored.

7. Siamese – $250 to $800


Moving on, the Siamese is connected to its namesake. As mentioned earlier, it came from a cat landrace in Thailand. Some people might find that confusing. If so, they should know that Siam renamed itself Thailand in the late 1930s. Be warned that the Siamese is not the same as the Thai. Pet Keen explains that the Siamese is more different from the original cat landrace whereas the Thai is less different from the original cat landrace. The Thai was named the Thai to recognize that relative lack of divergence.

Indeed, there is both a modern version of the Siamese and a traditional version of the Siamese. The modern version is the triangular-headed one that most people will recognize. Meanwhile, the traditional version has both a rounder head and a rounder body. Both versions are white-furred for the most part but have colored points. Supposedly, the cats that failed to meet this requirement became Oriental Shorthairs. Ironically, the Siamese can be even more affordable than the Oriental Shorthair, though to be fair, it can also be much more expensive. As always, people should shop around if they are concerned about getting the best deal for a pedigree cat.

6. Turkish Van – $200 to $800

The Turkish Van comes from the area around Turkey’s Lake Van. It has a big, powerful build, though it is supposed to look athletic rather than bulky. Coat-wise, the Turkish Van is interesting for two reasons. One, the coat is short in the summer and long in the winter. Two, the coat has the so-called Van pattern, meaning that it is white for the most part but has color in both the head and the tail. There are all-white Turkish Vans sometimes called the Turkish Vankedisi. They are actively bred against because they have a higher than normal chance of being deaf. Other Turkish Vans do not suffer from the same issue.

If people are thinking about getting a Turkish Van, they should know that these cats are rare in the west. That makes it harder for interested individuals to get one, thus contributing to the considerable variation in their prices. Mostly, Turkish Vans are athletic cats that are nonetheless quite affectionate towards their human family members. Reputedly, these cats have an affinity for water, though that is a matter of contention. Certainly, Senior Cat Wellness states that people shouldn’t just assume that their cats can swim. Even if they know that their cats can swim, supervision is still necessary because the unforeseen can always come to pass.

5. Havana Brown – $200 to $1,500

Unsurprisingly, Havana Browns are supposed to come in a warm brown. Reddish brown is the most common color, but other browns are possible for the cat breed. It isn’t 100 percent clear why Havana Browns are named thus. A popular line of speculation is that the name comes from their resemblance to the color of Cuban cigars, which according to Culture Trip, have a global reputation for being the best of the best. The likelier explanation is that Havana Browns resemble chocolate-colored Havana rabbits, particularly since the cats originated in the United Kingdom rather than the United States.

Regardless, Havana Browns have much to like. They tend to be on the curious end of things. Thanks to that, Havana Browns aren’t as skittish around strangers as other cats. Conveniently, they are playful but not so much so that their play will become destructive. Some Havana Browns are even pacific enough that they are willing to just lay around in their owners’ laps. If there is an issue, it would be these cats’ need for affection. They don’t do well when they are left on their own for long periods, to say the least.

4. Snowshoe – $200 to $800

Snowshoe cats can have either a triangle-shaped head or an apple-shaped head. The first comes from the fact that the founders were three Siamese cats with white feet. Meanwhile, the second comes from crossbreeding with American Shorthairs and other cat breeds with the more traditional, apple-headed look. The existence of both head shapes makes sense because Snowshoe cats aren’t defined by what their head looks like. Instead, they are defined by what their coat looks like.

That is one of the main reasons why Snowshoe cats are so rare. In short, it is hard to line up the genetic factors needed to ensure the right look. Sometimes, these cats have white fur that reaches too far up their limbs. Other times, these cats have white fur that doesn’t reach far up on their limbs enough. It is even possible for Snowshoe cats to just have no white on their coat whatsoever. The number of these cats is even lower because some cat fanciers’ organizations don’t recognize certain color combinations. Under these circumstances, interested individuals might not be able to get a Snowshoe cat unless they go out of their way to do so, thus increasing their costs.

3. Ragdoll – $75 to $400


Ragdoll cats are very likable. Appearance-wise, they are big, fluffy cats with big, rounded eyes. As for their personality, Ragdoll cats are famous for being docile but affectionate. In particular, they are known for going limp when picked up, thus explaining their name. Animal Path and other sources speculate that this is a behavior carried over from their kittenhood. Whatever the exact cause, the limpness isn’t necessarily a good thing for Ragdoll cats. It has given rise to the myth that these cats are pain resistant. In response, some cat breeders are working to reduce their tendency to go limp when picked up.

These characteristics have made Ragdoll cats very popular. Fortunately or unfortunately, that means that people can find a lot of them in animal shelters and other animal welfare organizations. Those organizations are eager to see people adopt their charges. As a result, interested individuals should be able to find these cats at very low prices.

2. Cornish Rex – $50 to $1,300

Cornish Rex

The Cornish Rex is an odd-looking cat. For those who are curious, most cats have three kinds of hair. In contrast, the Cornish Rex only has extremely fine and extremely thin down hair. Some people might wonder whether it is related to the Devon Rex, another short-haired cat breed from another part of the United Kingdom. If so, their similar-looking conditions come from different genetic mutations.

Supposedly, the Cornish Rex is a clever cat with a fine sense of curiosity. Interested individuals should be careful about letting them go outdoors. Other than the usual dangers, the Cornish Rex’s short-haired coat means that it doesn’t fare well when exposed to any kind of extreme weather.

1. American Shorthair – $0 to $600

Cat and Kitten

American Shorthairs descend from European cats that adapted to the conditions of North America. Strictly speaking, they are pedigree cats. In practice, they aren’t that different from the other short-haired cats descended from those that came over with European colonists. Even now, American Shorthairs remain a breed of proud working cats.

Naturally, American Shorthairs are very affordable in North America. Better still, they have much to recommend them besides their price. To name an example, American Shorthairs come in many colors and patterns, meaning that people have more options than otherwise possible. Furthermore, these cats are healthy, low maintenance, and easy to get along with. These three characteristics might not sound like much, but they are more important than they seem because their absence can add frustrating complications.

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