Have you always longed to hold a pet tiger? Well, now your dream can come true with the next best thing. You can own a giant cat breed that is actually a domesticated house cat.
How can a domestic cat qualify as a giant cat breed? First of all, a fully mature, domestic kitty weighs in at around 12 pounds, with a female cat being slightly less. However, a giant cat breed will weigh up to 20 pounds as an unneutered mature male. Some gigantic cats will even reach more than 30 pounds.
Origins of giant house cats
Our everyday domestic cats are all historical descendants of the African wildcats. However, over the course of many years, felines have spread worldwide and established into different categories and sections of breeds. Consequently, although all are actually related to each other through the feline species, many appear with their own unique traits. Different breeds obviously have different personalities and appearances to others. One of these differing individualities is build and size. This is why, today we have so many different types and varieties of domestic cats, including giant cat breeds.
If you love huge, cuddly cats, check out these 5 giant cat breeds.
No1. The Maine Coon
Legends state that this giant breed is a cross between a Racoon and a Lynx. This pussy is the largest domestic cat breed worldwide. Having the nickname of “the Gentle Giant” and looking rather like a lion due to the ruff around his neck. With a very gentle and sweet character, the Maine Coon cat is a very sociable pet. Their appearance does actually resemble a racoon, with a very similar tail. With a fabulously, thick, plush winter coat that makes them most suitable for colder conditions. Tufts of fur on the cat’s ears make him look like a bobcat. These Gentle Giant cats can actually weigh up to a gigantic 36 pounds.
No 2. Egyptian Mau giant cat breed
Although the Egyptian Mau is a long and lean feline, they do grow quite large. With its origins dating back to Ancient Egypt and first located in the US around 1956 where it’s rumoured a Russian Princess relocated some of the kitties from Italy. Although not many of these cats are sighted in Europe, perhaps because of its aversion to cold temperatures. This giant cat breed has a remarkable, spotted coat which is naturally glossy and short haired. The cat looks rather odd at times, with shorter front legs than the back. Colours are usually smoke and silver, bronze, blue and black. The Mau is a very affectionate and loyal pet that enjoys spending time in social situations. An average weight will be between 8 to 14 pounds.
No 3. The Siberian giant kitty
The attentive, affectionate Siberian cat originates from Siberia, as its name suggests. Growing to quite a large size these cats were previously known as Siberian Forest Cats. With enormous personalities, they are very happy to follow you around the home. Being very cuddly and cheerful, they make fantastic pets. Despite their thick, furry coats, which moult twice a year, a daily groom will keep them looking good. Their fur comes in a variety of shades and patterns including cream, red, blue, black and brown, in a huge 124 mixes of arrays. Their eyes are generally green or copper tones. These chunky, giant cat breeds can weigh up to 17 pounds and often even heavier.
No 4. The Chausie gigantic cat
With a wild jungle cat heritage that can be followed back to Ancient Egypt. Although the Chausie is a rare find in Britain, any that are actually bred in the UK attract a high price. With a very long body and limbs to match and weighing in at around 11 kilos. This giant cat breed can stand around 18 inches tall to the shoulder. Although nowadays they are domestic cats, they still retain their spirited sense of adventure. Often quite headstrong although also very intelligent and sociable cats. This giant cat loves to climb and hunt, very easy with its nimble, long legs. Only 3 colourways are accepted by the breed standard – black with a ticked tabby pattern, solid black or black with grizzled tabby shading.
No 5. The Bengal giant house cat
This very interactive and intelligent feline breed are quite happy around other pets. Originally bred using an Asian Leopard cat and a domestic cat, the resulting Bengal has a coat very much like a leopard. With a classification of a giant cat, some of these Bengal kitties can weigh up to 7 kilos. They have very energetic behaviours and it is even possible to train them, very much like a dog, to roll, lie down and sit.
Although cats come in a variety of shapes and sizes, there are some record breakers that hit the news in recent years. One of the largest domestic cats, Meow, weighed in at an amazing 18 pounds. Unfortunately, as Meow was a morbidly obese cat, the feline world no longer accepts the weight of a giant cat breed as a claim to fame. This prevents owners from overfeeding their pets just to win this gigantic cat title.
In later competitions, the length of the world’s giant cat breeds is taken into consideration. The current champion, Ludo, a Maine Coon, measured at 118.3 cms from the end of his tail to the tip of his nose. A previous winner was actually 123.19 cm in length! What an amazing giant cat!