Top 8 Kid-Friendly Cat Breeds

Lisa Selvaggio
by Lisa Selvaggio
Always ready for a play day and willing to lend a furry ear to listen, a cat can be your child’s best friend!

If you’re thinking about adding a feline to your family but you want to be certain that your kitty will love your kids, there are many kinds of cats that are known for being great with children. It’s important to note that many friendly pure and mixed breeds are found in shelters waiting for their forever homes, so consider adopting before shopping for your new furry friend.

We’ve come up with a short list of the many cat breeds that are great with kids. And, don’t forget, mixed breeds also make wonderful companions, so give them a chance, too. (Photo credit: kozorog/Bigstock)


If you’re looking for a fun, fearless, intelligent, and surprisingly acrobatic kitty who will love to play, the Burmese is an ideal choice. These cats like being around other pets and people of all ages, including kids. They’re curious yet not too demanding, making them the perfect companions for families. (Photo credit: Anima Felis/Bigstock)

Maine Coon

The Maine Coon is a large and gorgeous long-haired breed that gets along wonderfully with children and other pets. These cats are devoted, gentle, friendly, loving, and intelligent. They’re also calm, making them great companions for kids when they’re enjoying some downtime, yet they love to play, perfect for when they have energy to release. (Photo credit: tania_wild/Bigstock)


The Bombay is a stunning black cat that’s highly intelligent and a little mischievous to boot. These kitties can be trained to walk on a leash and play fetch, and their antics are great at keeping the entire family entertained. They’re also affectionate and outgoing, and they get along well with other pets, kids, and seniors. (Photo credit: Life on White/Bigstock)


The Birman is a beautiful kitty that’s known for being highly affectionate and calm. These cats don’t demand loads of attention, are super sweet, and are great with people of all ages, as well as other pets, because they’re easy to handle, even-tempered, and patient. (Photo credit: Ivonnewierink/Bigstock)

American Shorthair

The American Shorthair is a good-natured breed with a sweet disposition. These gentle kitties make great playmates for kids. Because they need to be groomed fairly regularly, it’s also a good idea to have your kids groom these cats to solidify their bond. (Photo credit: lufimorgan/Bigstock)

Exotic Shorthair

The Exotic Shorthair looks and acts a lot like the Persian, but you don’t need to worry about grooming this kitty like you would a Persian. These cats are easy-going and relaxed, making them ideal for kids who would like having a quiet companion that they can play with and relax with. Plus, they love warm laps and plenty of petting, so they’re great to have around when you’re winding down as a family. (Photo credit: E.W./Bigstock)


Ragdoll kitties enjoy being held so much that they relax completely and go limp when you pick them up. These cats are gentle, with a soft voice. They like getting attention, but they aren’t demanding. They also get along wonderfully with kids because they enjoy a little playtime but they’ll gladly relax for a quiet evening next your child who’s studying or reading. Plus, if you start at a young enough age, the Ragdoll is also likely to enjoy a safe and fun walk on a leash. (Photo credit: sh6476/Bigstock)

Devon Rex

Considered a good breed for those who suffer with cat allergies, the Devon Rex also makes a great companion for kids. These kitties have big eyes and ears, giving them a unique and adorable appearance. They’re also great for kids with a lot of energy because they love to play. But even though they’re energetic, these cats will gladly snuggle up to you in bed under your warm covers after a long day at school or work. (Photo credit: Alina Khalchenko/Bigstock)

No matter what breed you choose, spend some time educating your children on how to properly handle your cat, play with him, and take care of him. Make sure your children are gentle and not aggressive, boisterous, or loud, as these behaviors can frazzle a kitty. Play should always be safe, interactive, and fun for both the child and the pet.

Lisa Selvaggio
Lisa Selvaggio

Lisa Selvaggio is a freelance writer and editor, and our resident cats-pert, with certifications in pet nutrition and pet first aid. She enjoys producing content that helps people understand animals better so they can give their pets a safe and happy home.

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