Source: Briefly (Extract)
Posted: April 16, 2020

A lot of people look for the most expensive cats for the same reason they look for designer clothing.

Many people take pride in owning some of the world’s most special and expensive cats for various reasons that may be related to their behaviours or looks. This article has all the information regarding the temperament, health, and style of the world’s most expensive cats today.

The following list of the most expensive cats looks only at the most expensive house cat breeds. This excludes animals that have not universally been domesticated such as tigers.

How much is the most expensive cat in the world?

Most people believe the world’s most expensive cat is the Ashera at US$125,000. However, this is based on a lie that is still being spread by many outlets. In actual reality, it is the Savannah cat, as discussed below.

1. The Savannah

Price: US$25,000

The most expensive cat breed, the Savannah cat, was created by crossing domestic felines and the African serval. They are the largest of all the domestic feline breeds with weights reaching as high as 20 pounds (9.1 kilograms). Due to their serval ancestry, first-generation Savannahs are very aggressive, wild, and cumbersome to own as pets.

There was a controversy where an American company known as Lifestyle Pets marketed and sold Savannahs as a new exotic breed. They called it the Ashera cat and they went for as high as US$125,000, making them the most expensive kittens. The truth was revealed after DNA tests were performed and they were discovered to be first-generation Savannahs.

2. The Bengal

Price: US$5,000

This breed is a hybrid of the Egyptian Mau, the Asian leopard cat (Prionailurus bengalensis, which is where they get their name from), and domestic felines. The first of its kind was unplanned and born in California at a time when the Asian leopard could be bought as pets from stores. Jean Mill, the owner, did not expect it to mate with her tomcat.

They are known to be playful, and they like to fetch things and play in water. Their beautiful and exotic-looking coats that resemble the Savannah make them the second most expensive domestic cat. They have a lifespan of between 10 and 16 years.

3. The Persian

Price: US$3,000

They are named this way because they originate from Iran, formerly known as Persia. They are recognized by their short muzzle and round face. Sometimes, they are referred to as the Persian Longhair.

They have a lot of health issues that result from the features bred into them over time. Like dog breeds such as the pug, the conformations on their face make them prone to breathing difficulties. Their eyelids fold inward and cause the tearing of their cornea. They have a difficult labor process and a higher than usual stillbirth rate, between 16.1 to 22.1 percent. This data is factored into calculating their kitten mortality rate which a study found to be at 29.2 percent.

4. The Peterbald

Price: US$2,500

The name comes from their place of origin (St. Petersburg in Russia), and their lack of hair results from a hair loss gene. They can be born with a coat that is either bald, flocked, velour, brush, or straight. Except for the latter, they can lose the fur over time. They have oval toes and webbed feet that have been observed to help them turn doorknobs to open doors.

They are affectionate, peaceful, and sweet-tempered, which makes them good for children.

5. The Russian Blue

Price: US$1,700

They are believed to have originated from Arkhangelsk in Russia. They have grey fur and green eyes.

6. The Scottish Fold

Price: US$1,500

They are known as such because they possess a dominant-gene mutation that acts on their bodies’ cartilage. It causes their ears to fold down towards the head.

7. The Sphynx

Price: US$1,200

This famously hairless cat was selectively bred in the 1960s. They have been observed to have dog-like characteristics such as greeting their owners at the door.

Why are Sphynx cats so expensive?

They are costly to breed and are in very high demand. They require a lot of specialized care due to their lack of fur, and they are prone to diseases such as congenital myasthenic syndrome (CMS or muscular dystrophy) and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM).

8. The American Curl

Price: US$1,200

They are known for their ears that curl backwards. They require careful handling to avoid damage to their ears’ cartilage. They originated in Lakewood, California in 1981 from a spontaneous mutation in the litter birthed by a stray cat named Shulamith.

9. The American Wirehair

Price: US$1,200

Like the American curl, this breed results from a spontaneous mutation in a litter of kittens. This time it happened to the American Shorthair in 1966 in Vernon, New York.

Their fur is wiry and springy, similar to dog breeds such as the terrier.

10. The Ragdoll

Price: US$1,100

They are named this way due to their tendency to become relaxed when picked up. They were developed in the 1960s. They also have dog-like characteristics such as fetching and seeking affection.

11. The British Shorthair

Price: US$1,000

They are the pedigreed version of the British domestic feline. They tend to be less playful than other breeds. They have long lifespans with an expectancy of 14 to 20 years.

12. The American Shorthair

Price: US$900

These were brought from Europe to America by settlers on their ships to protect their stores from rats, mice, and other vermin. They have very muscular bodies.

What is the rarest breed of cat?

This question depends on who you ask. Rarity is determined by birth rates in a year. The Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) recognizes 44 breeds and lists the American Wirehair as being the rarest one. The Governing Council of the Cat Fancy, on the other hand, gives this title to the Sokoke, formerly known as the African Shorthair.

It is mainly found in Kenya’s coastal region and is named after the nearby Arabuko Sokoke National Forest where its foundation stock was picked up.

That concludes our list of the most expensive cats.