Where Did Ragdoll Cats Come From?

Let me share a short story with you about the Ragdoll

breed and how they came into being. When I first read about

this I was drinking a can of Diet Coke and almost ended up

with it all over the monitor. I have a feeling you’ll find

it as amazing and amusing as I did.

I’m going to break the story up into stages, even though it

is interwoven. The reason I am doing this is that the story

of the creation of the Ragdoll breed is convoluted to say

the least. It took me a few reads to really understand what

happened. So here it is…a short history of the Ragdoll

Cat, and how they came into being.

There once was a woman named Ann Baker and she lived in

California. She had two cats, Josephine and Daddy Warbucks.

These two cats were to become the sires of a great breed of

cats. Without going into excruciating details about it,

Daddy Warbucks lived up to his name and eventually with

Joesphine’s kittens and his genes a new breed of cat was


Ann Baker called them Ragdoll cats and then trademarked the

name, demanding royalites from other breeders using the name

“Ragdoll” for cats.

She started a cat registry in 1971, after breeding more

Ragdoll cats from Daddy Warbucks, called The International

Ragdoll Cat Association and claimed that the breed differed

in 5 ways from other breeds of cats:

1) They were relatively large;

2) They are less sensitive to pain;

3) They lack skills for self preservation;

4) Their fur does not mat together; and

5) Their bodies go limp when you hold them.

This was all very sane, but it didn’t stay that way for


It’s an X-File!

In a move worthy of Fox Mulder she started

making very, very unlikely claims about the reason for the

Ragdoll’s traits. Some were out of this world. Literally.

The Ragdoll Cat is not what you think it is, according to Ann Baker, who

claimed that the genetics of the Ragdoll cat were from part

of a secret government experiment in genetics…and that

aliens gave her the breed. There were even more claims than

this, but I don’t know how you can possibly top that.

Despite her eccentricities Ann Baker was credited with

setting the standard look and temprement of the breed. She

was not the breeder that brought the Ragdoll cat

international recognition, though. Denny and Laura Dayton

are responsible for that happening.

While Ann Baker was taking a walk on the wild side they were

setting up the Ragdoll Fanciers’ Club International, and it

was they that managed to get the breed registered with the

NCFA, making the breed a recognised purebred.

You can think what you like. Maybe Daddy Warbucks was

kidnapped by aliens and then became the father of a whole

new breed of cats. Maybe it was hard work and careful

breeding. I’m leaning toward the latter, personally. But if

you see a flying saucer above your house, and are wondering

why it is there, it could just be aliens wanting the return

of their genetic cousin. You never know…