20 Popular European Cat Breeds

European Cat Breeds
Photo by Marcus Roeske

There are cat breeds worldwide, some of which are more popular than others. The reason you may want to own a specific cat breed varies from person to person, whether it’s for the look or simply because it’s the type of cat you like. 

Europe is no exception when it comes to having cats that are specific to that region. If you’re looking for a new cat but aren’t sure where to start, read this list of 20 fantastic European cat breeds and see if any appeal to you!

1. European Shorthair

The European Shorthair is a lovable and friendly cat breed from Europe. They are known for their short, dense fur, which can come in various colors and patterns. 

These cats are also medium to large and have a muscular build. European Shorthairs are intelligent and easily trained, making them an excellent choice for families with children or other pets.

If you’re looking for a loyal and loving companion, the European Shorthair is the perfect breed for you!

2. Chartreux

The Chartreux is a French cat breed that is typically blue-gray. They are a medium to large-sized breed with a short, dense coat. Chartreux are known for being quiet, gentle, and affectionate cats. 

Also, they are intelligent and easily trained, making them excellent pets for families with children. While they may not be the most vocal of European cat breeds, they will still let you know when they need something!

3. Norwegian Forest Cat

One of the most famous European cat breeds is the Norwegian Forest Cat. As its name suggests, this kitty hails from Norway and is known for being a sturdy, independent feline. 

While they’re friendly and good with children, they also like their alone time and make great house pets. If you’re looking for a chatty cat, the Norwegian Forest Cat is not for you – but if you appreciate an independent streak in your feline friend, this might be the perfect breed for you.

4. Devon Rex

Devon Rex cats are among the most famous European cat breeds, and it’s easy to see why! These cats are amiable and love to cuddle. Making them the perfect companion for anyone looking for a furry friend. 

Devon Rexes are also very active and playful, so they’re sure to keep you entertained for hours on end. If you’re looking for a cat that is sure to make your life more fun, a Devon Rex is a perfect choice!

5. Scottish Fold

Out of all the European cat breeds, the Scottish Fold is one of the most unique and recognizable. The most distinguishing feature of this breed is its folded ears, which are caused by a genetic mutation. Scottish Folds are typically gentle and good-natured, making them great companions. 

Although they’re not as active as some other breeds, they still enjoy playing and keep you entertained for hours. If you’re looking for a cuddly, affectionate cat, then the Scottish Fold is a perfect choice!

6. Ukrainian Levkoy

Of all the European cat breeds in the world, the Ukrainian Levkoy is one of the most unique. This fascinating breed originates from Ukraine and is characterized by its bat-like ears and inverted facial features. 

Although they may look strange at first glance, these cats are incredibly affectionate and make great companions. If you’re looking for a faithful, one-of-a-kind pet, the Ukrainian Levkoy is worth considering!

7. Siberian

Siberian cats are one of the most famous European cat breeds. These lovable felines are known for their thick, luxurious coats and friendly dispositions. Originally from Siberia, these cats were brought to Europe by Russian traders. 

Today, they are beloved companions in homes across the continent. A Siberian is perfect if you’re looking for a cuddly cat to keep you warm on those cold winter nights!

8. Manx

Manx cats are initially from the Isle of Man, a small island in the Irish Sea between England and Ireland. These cats are best known for their short tails, ranging from barely there to completely absent. 

Manx cats are friendly and loving, making them great companions. They’re also playful and active, so they’ll keep you entertained for hours. The Manx is one to consider if you’re looking for unique European cat breeds!

9. Donskoy

The Donskoy is one of the most popular hairless European cat breeds known for its affectionate and playful personality. The Donskoy was discovered in 1987 by Russian cat breeder Elena Kovaleva.

The Donskoy is a unique breed because it is hairless but can also have a partial coat of downy fur. It is a medium-sized cat and typically weighs between 5 and 15 pounds. The Donskoy has large ears and big, almond-shaped eyes that come in various colors, including green, blue, and copper.

10. Serrade Petit

The Serrade Petit is a small to medium-sized cat from the island of Corsica. They are one of the oldest known natural breeds of cats.

Their compact size and fearless nature make them well-suited to life as both indoor and outdoor pets. Serrade Petits are known for their independent streak and are not particularly affectionate towards humans. 

However, they are brilliant and curious cats and can be trained to perform tricks or follow simple commands. These cats typically have short, fine fur, which is easy to care for, and come in various colors, including black, blue, brown, red, and white.

11. Kurilian Bobtail

The Kurilian Bobtail is a cat breed from the Kuril Islands between Russia and Japan. They are relatively new European cat breeds, having only been around since the 1960s.

Kurilian Bobtails are known for their unique appearance, including a short tail that looks like a pom-pom. 

Also, they are known for being very affectionate and loving cats, making them great pets for families. If you’re looking for a unique-looking cat with a caring personality, the Kurilian Bobtail might be the perfect breed for you!

12. Karelian Bobtail

The Karelian Bobtail is a native of Russia and Finland. It is a medium to large-sized cat with a distinctive bobbed tail. The coat is thick and dense and comes in various colors and patterns. Karelian Bobtails are known for being intelligent, playful, and affectionate cats. 

Also, they are relatively rare, which makes them all the more special. If you’re looking for a unique cat breed that will bring joy to your home, the Karelian Bobtail is worth considering.

13. Peterbald

Peterbalds are a type of Sphynx, and they’re characterized by their elegant, long-limbed bodies and high intelligence.

Originally from Russia, Peterbalds are now one of the most famous European cat breeds. While they may look hairless, Peterbalds have a fine layer of downy fur covering their bodies.

In addition, Peterbalds are one of the most affectionate cat breeds and love to cuddle with their humans. They’re also very playful and active, so a Peterbald is probably not the right breed if you’re looking for a lazy lap cat.

14. Toyger

The Toyger is a relatively new breed, having only been developed in the 1980s. Toygers were created by crossing Bengal and tabby cats to create a domestic cat that resembles a tiger.

While they are not genuinely tiger-like in behavior, they are one of the most active and playful cat breeds.

They are also knowledgeable and can be trained to do tricks or even walk on a leash. Toygers are medium-sized European cat breeds with short, striped fur that come in various colors, including orange, brown, black, and silver.

15. German Longhair Cat 

The German Longhair is a beautiful, unique cat breed recognized by the CFA and TICA. It is a large cat, with males weighing around 15-20 pounds and females approximately 10-15 pounds. 

The German Longhair is a relatively new breed, having only been developed in the late 1970s. But in that short time, they have become prevalent European cat breeds. German Longhaired are known for their gentle dispositions and loyalty to their families.

16. Poodle Cat

If you’re looking for a unique cat breed, consider the Poddle. This little-known breed originates from Europe and is characterized by its unusual appearance. The Poddle has a rounded head, big ears, and a short, stocky body.

Also, it’s one of the only cat breeds in both long and short-haired varieties. If you’re looking for a new and different kind of pet, the Poddle might be the perfect fit for you.

17. Russian Blue 

Although Russian Blues are often considered American cats, they originate from Russia. These blue-hued beauties are known for their intelligence and playful nature and make excellent companions. The Russian Blue is the perfect breed if you’re looking for a regal yet loving cat.

18. Turkish Angora

The Turkish Angora is a beautiful, long-haired cat breed that originates from Turkey. These cats are known for their elegant white coats and blue eyes, making wonderful companions. Turkish Angoras are intelligent and playful and love being around people.

The Turkish Angora is an excellent choice if you’re looking for friendly, affectionate European cat breeds. Remember that these cats require regular grooming to keep their coats looking their best.

Also, Turkish Angoras are known for being good climbers, so be sure to provide them with plenty of toys and scratching posts to keep them amused.

19. Aegean

The Aegean is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a regal yet playful cat. This Turkish breed is relatively new, having only been around since the 1980s. Aegeans are medium-sized cats with muscular bodies and semi-long fur that come in various colors and patterns. 

In addition, they’re known for being friendly and outgoing, and they love to play fetch! If you live in Europe and are looking for a unique cat breed, the Aegean is worth considering.

20. German Rex

If you’re looking for a unique cat breed, you can’t go wrong with the German Rex. Originally from Germany, this breed is characterized by its short, curly coat. 

The German Rex is a friendly and loving cat, making it an excellent choice for families. While not as common as some other European cat breeds, the German Rex is a beautiful and distinct cat that is sure to turn heads.

Conclusion

There are many wonderful European cat breeds to choose from. Some have been here long, and some are more recent. Each has unique features, whether it’s the fact that they have one of the most petite sizes or can adapt to different environments. 

And each cat is as unique as its owner! If you’re looking for a new friend, you’re sure to find just what you’re looking for in this list of 8 fantastic European cat breeds!

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