If you're a pet person, you're probably aware that certain dog breeds are expensive, but did you know some cats can fetch even higher prices? Many are exotic cats, like the Savannah, but even common breeds, such as the Ragdoll and Russian Blue, can cost more than a used car. Discover which 17 fancy kitties made our list of the most expensive cat breeds, and get ready to pick your jaw up off the floor when you find out how much they go for.
17. Maine Coon: $1,000-$2,000
Maine coons can weigh upwards of 25 pounds, which is a whole lot of cat, but that's not the reason these beauties cost so much. The breed is prone to several health issues, and reputable breeders complete thorough genetic testing and selective breeding to ensure their kittens are healthy.
Depending on the Maine coon's pedigree and color, they can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $2,000 or more. But the price is well worth it for a gentle and playful family cat like the Maine coon.
16. Devon Rex: $1,000- $2,500
The Devon rex isn’t a breed you see very often, which is why they cost a pretty penny. These rare cats have a curly coat and triangular head that makes them look a bit like a little elf. They’re a goofy breed that wants to be by your side.
Devon rexes come in a variety of shades and patterns, with some being far more uncommon than others. Kittens start out around $1,000 and sell for upwards of $2,500 or more if they’re a rare shade, like lavender or calico.
15. Exotic Shorthair: $1,000- $3,000
If you think the exotic shorthair looks an awful lot like the Persian, you’re right. They are closely related, with the exotic being the short-haired version of the Persian. Both types of cats are adorable, quiet, and super sweet.
Despite their outstanding personalities, exotics aren’t as sought after as their long-haired cousins, which means they’re not as expensive. Exotic shorthairs still fetch between $1,000 to $3,000, on average.
14. Russian Blue: $1,000-$2,000
Due to their popularity, the Russian blue is a pricy breed. Their stunning blue coloring is the feature that makes them so special, though they're also known to be low shedders and nearly hypoallergenic. These cats are also incredibly easy to train due to their high intelligence. If you decide to bring home a Russian blue, you can expect a loyal and independent companion.
13. British Shorthair: $1,200-$2,500
You can't look at a British shorthair without feeling like you're in the presence of royalty. They're one of the oldest known cat breeds and are increasingly popular as pets worldwide. Because of the high demand for these cute felines, prices for a purebred kitten are relatively high.
Depending on their genetics, a show-quality British shorthair can cost you $2,500 or more. Good looks aside, these cats are easygoing and undemanding.
12. Lykoi: $1,500 - $2,500
The lykoi breed is more commonly known as the Werewolf Cat because that's exactly what they look like. Their sparse, wiry hair is a result of a recessive genetic mutation that veterinarians discovered in 2011.
There are reportedly only a few hundred registered Lykoi cats worldwide, so purebred kittens are rare and, therefore, expensive. Despite their spooky appearance, these cats are incredibly affectionate and friendly. Many owners say they have a dog-like personality because they like to play fetch.
11. American Curl: $1,000-$3,000
Cat breeds with unique characteristics are known to fetch higher prices, which is certainly the case in the American curl. This breed has a distinct look with ears that curl backward thanks to a dominant genetic mutation.
The angle of their curl is actually what determines the price of these fancy cats: kittens with a curl arc between 90 and 180 degrees are deemed show-quality and sold for upwards of $3,000, whereas those with straighter ears or ones that curl so far back they touch their head are sold as pets. American curls are spunky and playful cats who make a great addition to many households.
10. Scottish Fold: $1,000-$4,000
You've probably seen the Scottish fold featured in viral videos. They're hard to miss, thanks to those small, folded ears. Their docile and laid-back nature makes them excellent pets. Scottish fold breeding is complex because two bred together will result in a cat with genetic deformities, so they have to be crossed with other breeds.
But even then, not all Scottish Folds are born with folded ears. Some have straight ears, often referred to as "Scottish straights." So if you want a Scottish fold with a characteristic look, you can expect to spend some serious moolah.
9. Siberian: $1,200-$4,000
If you're an allergy sufferer, you'd probably pay big bucks to live a sneeze-free life with your cat, right? Say hello to the Siberian. This breed is considered one of the best breeds for people with cat allergies, which comes with a high price tag.
Siberian cats reportedly produce incredibly low levels of Fel d1, which is the protein in a cat's saliva that triggers allergies in humans. Aside from their hypoallergenic nature, Siberians are great companions with playful and curious personalities.
8. Peterbald: $1,200-$5,000
If you haven't heard of the peterbald, it's because they're a fairly rare breed. Even so, they're in high demand as pets and show cats, which explains their high cost. Peterbalds look a bit like the sphynx breed, but they have a more angular face, and their coat can range from completely hairless to velvety peach fuzz. They're very social and curious cats who aren't afraid to speak their mind.
7. Ragdoll: $1,500-$5,000
The affectionate ragdoll consistently tops the charts as the No. 1 most popular cat breed, and for good reason. They're calm, laid-back, cuddly, and, as their name implies, will allow you to carry them around like a doll. Because of these traits, they do very well with children and are great family pets.
But breeding kittens for all these desirable characteristics takes effort, so Ragdolls aren't widely available, which means they're expensive. The price for a well-bred Ragdoll kitten can range from $1,500 to $5,000 or more.
5. Sphynx: $2,000-$5,000
No hair? No problem. The naked sphynx cat is a highly sought-after breed, so much so that some breeders have waitlists of up to a few years for available kittens. These cats can be difficult to find because breeding involves a significant financial investment to make sure all their kittens are healthy. Sphynx are prone to several health conditions like heart defects, so genetic testing is crucial.
People flock to Sphynx cats because of their extroverted and social personalities, along with their cute, hairless looks. If you decide to splurge on one, you can expect to spend a lot of time bathing your hairless friend and keeping them busy.
6. Persian: $2,000-$5,000
The epitome of fancy cats, the Persian is a well-loved breed. These squished-face cats are in high demand because of their attractive appearance and great personality. Most are gentle, quiet, and sweet to boot.
The price of a Persian kitten can range from $2,000 to $5,000 based on their color, pattern, and pedigree. Unfortunately, Persian cats are also at an increased risk of birth-related complications, so many need to have expensive C-sections, which can add to the cost of the kittens.
4. Bengal: $1,500-$10,000
Bengals look like little wild cats because that's what they are. This expensive breed is the result of crossing an Asian leopard cat with a domestic feline. The cost of a Bengal kitten ultimately depends on how far removed they are from their wild ancestors.
Most Bengals kept as pets are fifth generation or further, so they probably won't cost as much as an F1 or F2 (first or second generation, respectively), but they're still pricy. Depending on the Bengal's marking and pedigree, you're looking to spend at least $1,500 for a well-bred kitten. Bengals are super high-energy and social cats that many owners describe as being dog-like.
3. Khao Manee: $7,000-$11,000
The Khao Manee is an ancient Thai breed that was only recently recognized by the Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA). These cats have a pure white coat with either blue eyes, gold eyes, or one of each. Because Khao Manee cats are difficult to find outside of Thailand, the kittens are expensive at $7,000 each or more.
What's even rarer than finding a Khao Manee cat is discovering one with heterochromia, the trait that gives them one gold eye and one blue eye. These special cats can cost up to $11,000. If you're able to find a Khao Manee, you'll enjoy an outgoing, friendly cat who loves to be the center of attention.
2. Savannah: $10,000-$50,000
The Savannah is the closest you'll get to a true cat-dog, and they're as expensive as they are impressive. To create a Savannah, breeders have to cross a wild African serval with a housecat, which can be difficult and isn't always successful. This high failure rate has sent the price of these expensive cats up.
Like the Bengal, a Savannah cat's generation impacts the price you'll pay. First-generation Savannahs can cost well over $20,000, whereas more domesticated generations can cost $8,000 to $12,000 for a well-bred kitten. Still, Savannah cats retain a lot of their wild traits, so they're not a good fit for most pet owners, and some states even outlaw the ownership of this breed.
1. Ashera: $25,000-$125,000
What's the most expensive cat breed in the world? Meet the Ashera. This high-priced cat is a hybrid cross between the African serval, an Asian leopard, and a domestic housecat. Through selective breeding, the creators reportedly developed a cat that's 96 percent hypoallergenic and lives an average lifespan of 25 years. These cats are rare because only a small number are bred each year. Is this special breed worth the $125,000 price tag? We'll let you decide.
Why Are Fancy Cat Breeds So Expensive?
Breeding purebred cats takes a ton of knowledge, time, money, and effort. The high prices of the most expensive cat breeds reflect these factors, along with the supply and demand of each specific breed. Know that healthy, well-bred kittens often come with a high price tag because the breeders are doing everything they can to ensure you go home with a kitten you can love for many years.
If you're interested in getting a purebred cat but don't want to spend several thousands of dollars, consider adopting from a breed-specific rescue. This way, you can find a cat with the appearance and traits you prefer while knowing you gave a loving cat a second chance.