Other names: Ceylan Cat, Sri Lankan Cat


The Ceylon originates, as its name suggests, from the island of Ceylon, which has since become part of Sri Lanka. They arrived in Europe for the first time in 1984 in Milan (Italy). They are an extremely rare breed and only a few individual Ceylon cats can currently be found in Italy and France. The breed recognised by the International Feline Federation until 1993. They are active cats, that love coconut pulp, just affirming their tropical origins!

Key facts about the Ceylon

Life expectancy :





Temperament :


Type of coat :

Naked Short Long

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Origins and history

In 1984, the Director of the Colombo Zoo authorised Veterinary Doctor Paolo Pellegatta to return to Milan (Italy) with 6 Ceylon cats. He started a breeding programme with them. However, the breed remains quite unknown and it is extremely rare to meet a Ceylon!

Physical characteristics of the Ceylon

Adult size

Female : Between 10 and 12 in

Male : Between 12 and 14 in

Reaches adult size around the age of 1.


Female : Between 7 and 11 lb

Male : Between 9 and 13 lb

Coat colour

Type of coat

Eye colour



Ceylons are medium sized, semi-cobby cats, who interestingly have slightly shorter front legs than its hind legs. One of the main characteristics of this breed is the pronounced angle formed by their real legs. Ceylons have a thin but muscular frame. They have reasonably round heads that are small compared to their bodies, and short noses. They have big eyes, and medium to large ears with rounded tips.

These cats can be both active and calm. They are good hunters in their natural environment due to their agility but they also know how to be affectionate with their owners, and often demand their presence and attention. Ceylons are sociable cats and can easily adapt to life inside. However there are differences in temperament depending on the individual.

Good to know

To make a friend for life, offer your Ceylon coconut pulp: it's their guilty pleasure!


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    Both sociable and playful with humans, this cat is generally cuddly. Letting the Ceylon initiate contact is always a good idea though.

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    The playful nature of this cat is one of the key characteristics of this breed. Therefore they need daily play sessions!

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    Although they can be very active, these Sri Lankan cats do also need some recovery time during which they need some peace and quiet, and their owners must respect their sometimes independent nature.

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    These cats know exactly how to meet their own needs, but the presence and availability of their owners are just as important as their independence.

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    Fearful / wary of strangers

    In general the Sri Lankan cat is extremely sociable. However, there are differences in temperament between individuals.

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    The Ceylon is independent, in the sense that they will have their own habits and routines. However, these cats loves attention and prefers human presence. They will not enjoy being left alone for long periods and would be most suitable for someone who works from home or has no full time employment.

    Behaviour of the Ceylon

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      These Sri Lankan cats can be very chatty to make sure they get what they want!

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      Need for exercise / Sporty

      Their playful nature makes them very active. If these cats are to live indoors, a cat tree is recommended, as well as daily play sessions.
      Ceylon cats are also very good hunters, because of their island origins: where prior to being domesticated, they had to feed themselves on small rodents.

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      Tendency to run away

      Their love for tracking prey can lead them to roam far from home. If Ceylons are given outside access it is a good idea to create a secure space for them, particularly if you live near busy roads.

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      Greedy / Gluttony

      They are not known to be a particularly greedy breed, which makes maintaining a balanced diet more feasible.

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      Is the Ceylon right for you?

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        Ceylon and cats

        Very sociable in nature, the Sri-Lankan cat adapts very well to feline friends. However it is important to ensure that each cat has their own space.

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        Ceylon and dogs

        Very sociable in nature, Ceylons are known to adapt easily to their environments, including in the presence of dogs. However, this does depend on the individual cat.

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        Ceylon and children

        Due to their sociable nature, they easily adapt to children's games, as long as the child is respectful towards them. However, this does depend on the individual cat.

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        Ceylon and the elderly

        Above all Ceylons would love the availability and attention that an elderly person would be able to give it, provided that they’re happy to regularly play with their cats!



        We do not have enough data to set an average price for a Ceylon cat. Because of it's rarety, this cat can cost a lot of money. As well, the price will vary according to their age and sex.
        It costs on average £35 / month to provide for its needs, to provide a good quality diet and to keep him in good health.


        Fur maintenance is easy as their short hair does not require daily brushing.


        Ceylon’s short hair and almost complete lack of an undercoat means they don’t leave their hair everywhere!

        Nutrition of the Ceylon

        A balanced diet suits Ceylons perfectly. From time to time, they will liven up their diet with prey if given the opportunity! 
        On their island of origin, Sri Lankan cats are not domesticated. They are completely autonomous in terms of food, feeding exclusively on the fruits of their hunts. Therefore their household food should be very rich in protein.

        Health of the Ceylon

        Life expectancy

        On average the Ceylon lives for 14 to 16 years.

        Strong / robust

        Due to their Sri Lankan origins, these cats are more adapted to warm weather than cold weather.

        Tendency to put on weight

        Due to their very active nature Ceylons generally burn a lot of energy. These cats don’t tend to be overweight.

        Common illnesses

        Ceylons are robust cats and there are no illnesses particular to the breed. However, they can develop the same common illnesses as domestic cats. If they have external access, it is a good idea to vaccinate them against infectious diseases such as Coryza, Leucosis, Rabies (in countries where rabies is present) and Typhus. Also, they can be prone to periodontal diseases (gingivitis and tartar) and therefore dental care is highly recommended.


        No cross breeding is allowed.

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