Top Kid-Friendly Cats

See which 10 cat breeds children get along well with at home.

By Stacy N. Hackett

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GIrl with mix-breed cat -- Top Kid-Loving Cat-Breeds
Give children a chance to build animal-care skills by pairing them with these kid-friendly cat breeds.
What is more endearing than a child holding a cuddly cat? A child snuggling with a purring cat that loves the attention from its small human companion. If your household includes children, consider adding one of these kid-friendly cat breeds to your home.

Have a mix-breed cat, or don't see your favorite cat breed here? This list contains just a small set of the many cats that do well with children.
American Wirehair. Distinguished by a curly, kinky coat that gives the cat its name, the medium-sized American Wirehair cat comes in a rainbow of colors and patterns. This outgoing, friendly lap cat loves to be held by everyone, including children. American Wirehair Cat 
Chausie. The active, energetic Chausie cat is the result of a cross between the Jungle Cat and domestic cats, but its personality is much more mild than wild. Because this cat breed craves companionship, it does well with children who have been taught to treat animals with respect.  Chausie Cat
Havana Brown. The chocolate-colored Havana Brown cat enjoys meeting people of all ages. The cat's social, even-tempered personality means it will thrive on attention when visitors come over and will blend well in households that include children and other pets.  Havana Brown Cat
Maine Coon. Known for its large size and lovely longhaired coat, the Maine Coon cat is a popular choice with all types of cat owners. The cat's gentle, devoted nature makes it a welcome addition to homes with children.  Maine Coon cat
Napoleon. A cross between the Munchkin cat and the Persian cat, the Napoleon cat breed combines the best of both cat breeds for a playful, laidback feline companion. While the cat breed's short legs immediately capture attention, the Napoleon's love for and gentleness with children quickly win over cat-loving parents.
Napoleon Cat
Siberian. This native Russian cat breed combines intelligence, friendliness and dog-like qualities in a compact body covered with a plush coat. With a reputation for devotion, the Siberian cat tends to view the children of the house as its own, showing its loyalty to even the youngest kids.
Siberian Cat
Thai. It looks just like the pointed, Siamese-like cat you may have grown up with, and it has the same sweet, endearing personality you remember. The Thai cat makes an ideal companion for owners of all ages and has a people-oriented, inquisitive personality to complement that of children.
Thai cat
Tonkinese. With the body type of a Burmese cat and the pointed coat of the Siamese cat, the Tonkinese blends the best of two popular breeds. The Tonkinese cat also shows the best traits of these cats: a social nature and love for people that extends to humans of all ages.
Tonkinese cat
Toyger. The wonderful thing about Toyger cats — if you have to choose just one — is that Toygers love children, and love to play with them. This domestic breed with the wild tiger looks makes an attentive, loving companion in all types of households.
Toyger cat
Turkish Angora. The energy level of the Turkish Angora cat allows it to keep up with the playful antics of children of all ages. This longhaired cat enjoys a reputation as a highly interactive breed, lavishing affection on all members of the household.
Turkish Angora cat

Want more ideas for pets and kids? Check out this list of other best pets for children.
Pet Fish and Children
Horses and Children
Small Mammals and Children 
Livestock and Children
Pet Birds and Children
Pet Reptiles and Children

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Reader Comments

Lauren    Cleveland, OH

9/4/2013 6:03:05 PM

I have always adopted mixed breed cats from shelters and loved whatever personality developed. However I recently adopted a Maine Coon and my goodness! What a big amazing personality he has. He has turned my dog-loving family into a fan club, and all the kids are begging for a cat now. My Maine Coon gets excited when the 3 and 5 year old boys come over to play and gallops around with them like "one of the boys". Never had a cat that loved strangers so much!

Galadriel    Lothlorien, ME

5/8/2013 11:13:30 PM

How about the American Shorthair and its close relatives?

CatChannel Editor    Irvine, CA

11/30/2012 8:48:27 AM

Thank you for this comment. Mixed-breed cats also make great pets, as owners can attest to. You can seek out a mix of the above breeds at a shelter, or find a shelter that offers a play area to see whether a cat's characteristics seem right for a kid-friendly pet. Shelter cats have a lot of love to give!

S    Lake City, FL

11/29/2012 10:30:11 PM

Thank you for this relevant and interesting article!
However, when so many of the few cat breeds listed are somewhat rare and/or expensive (at least in the US), could you please list more of the kid friendly breeds, so that families on a budget may better find what they're really looking for.
Thanks again- I'm hearing about some of these breeds for the first time. Very cool!

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