Cats are adorable, but there are also some ugly cat breeds. After dogs, cats are the most popular pets we own. Cats were also so close to human from ancient times. An Egyptian mummified cat proves the deep running relation of cats with humans. Cats can catch very faint sound which is not audible to humans. They are talented in hunting vermin. This might have attracted humans in keeping them as a pet in the house. They have a highly flexible body and quick reflexes. There are more than 70 breeds of cats known to man and the following breeds will make us think “Are they for real?”
- 33 Ugly Animals of the World
- Top 15 Ugliest Dog Breeds in the World
- Top 15 Ugliest Bird Species in the World
#15. Scottish Fold!
There seems to be an odd obsession with breeders wanting to make animals look like they should be in a sideshow.
The first Scottish Fold was found in a litter of barnyard kittens by William Ross, and he liked the idea of ear-less cats so much he decided to use her to make a new breed.
Like the Munchkin, the Scottish Fold is a completely normal cat in terms of its proportions. And when it is born, its ears are perfectly normal, too. After about three weeks, however, their special gene kicks in, and it makes the cartilage in the ears fold forward and down, sometimes two or three times. Some of these cats have so many folds in their ears they look like they have no ears at all!
The Scottish Fold is kindly described, sometimes, as teddy-bearish or owlish. For the most part, though, it looks like a poster child for an animal abuse hotline. Those wide eyes and pitifully flat ears just scream, “I promise not to scratch the furniture again.”
#14. Oriental Shorthair!
The Oriental Shorthair is a descendant of the Siamese. Originating in England, it is the result of crossbreeding British Shorthairs, Abyssinians and typical house cats with Siamese.
This breed is lively, intelligent and social. Typically weighing from 8-14 lbs (3.6 – 6.5 kg), the Oriental Shorthair has huge ears, a narrow head and a lean body.
The Oriental Shorthair remains kitten-like late into its adulthood and is a natural fetcher who initiates play with its owners. It is athletic and, if allowed, will climb and run throughout the house.
Oriental Shorthairs tend to be exclusive in who they show affection to, sometimes even to only one owner at the expense of other family members. Generally, they do not like interacting with visitors.
This cat is the exact opposite of the Exotic Shorthair. While the Exotic Shorthair resembles a stocky, flat-faced bouncer, the Oriental Shorthair looks like an anorexic supermodel. Lean, bony body, long legs and neck. In fact, if it was any more like a supermodel, it would probably sport a satin sash and a Diamond Forever tote bag.
LaPerms have a very confused coat, carrying short tight curls, long corkscrew ringlets and straight glossy fur all on one body! This random mix of coats makes them look like they hadn’t been groomed in weeks, and some sport a huge fluffed- out tail similar to a squirrel. Even their whiskers grow in every which direction!
The LaPerm originated as a spontaneous breed in a litter of barnyard kittens, and were carefully bred to keep that ragged, mixed coat. After careful consideration, they were branded as LaPerm, and “ragged” became “unique and fancy.” The cat’s popularity quickly spread and breeders are now found worldwide. Just goes to show the right name will sell anything!
You know the type of person that pays hundreds of dollars for the faded, torn and worn, back-of-the-goodwill store look? Well, the LaPerm is a pedigree cat bred to have that same deranged, unkempt stray look. If that’s your taste, this cat’s for you!
#12. Cymric Cat!
Is it a ball? Is it a sumo wrestler? No, it is a Cymric Cat!
Native to the Isle of Man, the most distinctive feature of this breed is its lack of tail. Legend has it that the cat lost its tail when Noah closed the door of his ark on the poor creature’s tail, severing it in the process. In reality, the tailless trait, which puts it in our list of ugly cat breeds, is due to the lack of the last vertebrae. This was the result of a genetic mutation in the domestic feline breed of the island. Currently, four different types of tails are seen in the breed.
Cymric Cats are known for their stocky build and powerful hind legs, which are often longer than the forelimbs. Add to this the fact that they are naturally curious and have a flair for hunting, and it is easy to understand why Cymric owners often complain that even things kept on the topmost shelves in their homes are not safe from their pets.
#11. Devon Rex!
Is that really a cat? Yes. it’s a Devon Rex!
The appearance of this breed is often and rightly described as unique. An English offering to the ugly cat breeds of the world, the Devon Rex is often called the alien cat, and with its slender body, short crop of curly hair and facial features the likes of which you may have never seen on a cat, these felines certainly live up to that description.
The breed emerged in England in the 1960s and has gained in popularity largely because of the myth that they are hypoallergenic, given their suede-like coat. However, some varieties of the Devon Rex are also known to have wild, curly hair. These cats have large, impish eyes, set in a wide, elfin face, flanked by unusually over-sized ears.
Known to be incredibly playful, you don’t own a Devon Rex, it owns you. So, be prepared to let your pet occupy every aspect of your life; whether you are eating, sleeping or spending some time on the porcelain throne, the Devon will be around to give you company.
The exceptional thing about this breed, even if you were to discount its strikingly unusual looks, is its penchant for perching in the highest spot of a room. So, no shelves, crannies or attics will be inaccessible to this breed. What’s more, if there is no other vantage point, it will happily climb onto the shoulders of its owner.
Famed for its exceptional intelligence, you could teach the Devon Rex most of the tricks that one would want to get a puppy to perform. Plus, it easily adjusts to a household with a menagerie of animals, from dogs, to other cats and even birds and ferrets. The most important thing to remember about this kitty is that it does not take no for an answer when it comes to food.
The Devon Rex lives to eat and has a taste for human food, from fries to burgers and more. So, don’t expect this cat to be content with the food in its bowl; it will often jump on the dining table to help you finish your plate. And if you think you can be stern with it, please be warned that this little chomper can make a wickedly effective “I have not eaten in days” face.
#10. Exotic Shorthair!
A Persian Cat with short hair… how exotic! Yeah.
This grumpy looking kitty was originally a Persian hybrid that was bred to stand out in cat shows with its shorter fur. Then, it was banned by stricter breed standards. Later, it made its return under the title “Exotic Shorthair.”
Talk about a case of “you say to-may-to, I say to- mah-to.” It’s still a Persian. But hey, at least it’s not hairless! Yet.
’’Exotic” is a stretch. Everything about the Exotic Shorthair is dense, short, round and large. Even the breed standard calls for it to be the equivalent of a flat-faced bouncer outside a club entrance.
However, despite its tough kitty stature, the Exotic Shorthair is remarkably friendly to dogs and other cats. It is also much easier to groom and maintain than its Persian ancestors.
Excuse me, sir, but have you seen my legs?
Munchkins are considered the wiener dogs of the cat world. They are perfectly normal in every way except for those stubby legs!
Frankly, Munchkins are a highly controversial breed. Half the cat pedigree associations won’t even acknowledge them as an actual breed, and one judge even resigned his post rather than have anything to do with a breed that is centered around a genetic defect.
Despite their notoriety, however, they are said to be very affectionate, playful and intelligent. They are able to keep up with their longer-legged cousins and have little difficulty’ finding ways to jump up to where they want to go. They do not suffer from the hip and spine problems critics predicted, unlike similar dog breeds.
There have been frequent reports of Munchkins developing arched spines, and hollow chests are not uncommon, which doesn’t bode well for something that looks like half a cat with nubs for legs.
#08. Cornish Rex!
The Cornish Rex looks a bit like a Sphynx with a soft undercoat of wavy fur. But just the undercoat, as they lack the other two coats normal to most cat breeds. However, compared to the Sphynx, well, some fur is better than none — even if that fur looks like it got chopped with a blunt pair of kids’ scissors!
The Cornish Rex originated in Cornwall, England. (“Rex” is Latin for “king.”) Breeds with wavy hair are given the “Rex” in honor of King Albert, who raised wavy-haired rabbits for shows. And in the way of royalty, the first Cornish Rex was bred with its mother to produce a litter of heirs to the new breed. Needless to say, inbreeding and outbreeding efforts are very selective to maintain the purity of the genetic line.
If the Cornish Rex didn’t have enough reasons to see a therapist, some naturally smell like cheese due to scent glands in their toes. Hmm, a Cornish cat that smells like cheese… well, at least it’s not Limburger.
Next on our list of the world’s ugliest cat breeds is the Peterbald which, despite its origin in the cold climate of St. Petersburg, Russia, is bald (or in the process of balding). Yes, indeed, just because this hairless wonder can be born with a full coat of fur doesn’t mean it can keep it as it grows older.
Ideally, the Peterbald has a long, lean body and long legs. It also has large pointed ears and big almond-shaped eyes.
Interestingly, in addition to its patchy, nearly hairless appearance, the Peterbald is one of a handful of breeds with webbed toes! These cats are highly intelligent, though, and can use their webbed, oval-shaped paws to turn a levered doorknob or pick up objects like a human.
I didn’t know there were hairless monkeys living around St Petersburg. Oh, wait, that’s a cat!
#06. Ukrainian Levkoy!
The Ukrainian Levkoy is considered an “experimental breed,” which is a fitting title for the kitty of Frankenstein! This breed is designed to be dog-faced with a flat skull, large eyes, curly whiskers, large folded-over ears and a bald, slender frame.
The Ukrainian Levkoy is said to be friendly, active and intelligent. It craves company, even if its company might not necessarily crave it on their lap.
Russian breeder Elena Vsevolodovna Birjukova created the Ukrainian Levkoy in 2000 – 2001. Ironically, like Professor Frankenstein, the breeder seemed to not think things through…
Despite the extra cold climate in which the Ukrainian Levkoy originated, like the Peterbald, they are a nearly hairless breed that needs special protection from the cold and sun-burn. Unlike Frankenstein’s poor monster, however, at least this kitty doesn’t have to worry about torches and pitchforks.
A super popular cat… for something that looks like a fluffy Bulldog. Persian cats are densely built with cobby bodies, thick necks, short legs and flat faces where the nose is not supposed to be lower than the bottom edge of its eyes.
The Persian has super long hair that requires human intervention to groom. Add in wheezing from a malformed trachea and tear stains from constantly overflowing ducts, and you’ve got yourself a very sloppy kitty for a breed representing fancy cat food.
If things weren’t bad enough for this breed, some owners cut down on maintenance by shaving off all the Persian’s body fur and leaving the head hair intact. The result of this so-called “Lion Cut” is a bloated, flat-faced head on a tiny, stubby body. Talk about kicking a guy while he’s down!
The Elf-Cat is a curious amalgam of the Sphynx and the American Curl. A greasy, bald, wrinkled mess of a kitty meets a fluffy cat with ears that look like someone took a hair curler to them. Mix them together and you have the love child of Star Wars’ Yoda and Harry Potter’s Dobby.
Created by Karen Nelson and Kristen Leedom, elf-cats have a sturdy, athletic build. They are intelligent, sociable and inquisitive.
However, like most hairless breeds, Elf-Cats need special protection from extreme heat and cold. Also, they require regular sponge-baths to keep from getting oily and sticky because no one likes a grubby Yoda.
Elf-Cats are so wrinkled and ugly you gotta admire them a little just for having the audacity to venture out in public. Salute!
Ringing in at number three on our ugly cat list the Sphynx. These funky kitties may look completely hairless, but they actually have a fine downy layer of hair you can barely see. Their skin is the same color their coat would have been, complete with coat markings.
Don’t start thinking this cat is low- maintenance, though! Fur absorbs oil and protects the ears and skin from dirt and weather. Because the Sphynx does not have hair, they are an oily mess with lots of earwax. They need regular sponge baths, special clothes when it is cold and protection for sunburns.
Also, baldness doesn’t preclude these odd beasties from activating allergies! (Cat allergies are triggered by skin dander and a protein in their saliva.) So, if you’re allergic to cats in general, you’re also allergic to the Sphynx.
In case that isn’t enough, the breed standard also calls for the Sphynx to have a potbelly.
Wonderful! Just what I always wanted – an oily, wrinkled, bald, potbellied cat that needs frequent cleaning! And it can choke up my guests with spit and kitty dandruff. If this royal pain in the tail wasn’t so affectionate, I’d swear the Sphynx was the Grinch!
Is that a KGB assassin? No, it’s a Donskoy cat!
Not be confused with the Sphynx, the Donskoy’s “no hair” trait comes from a dominant gene. The breed came into light in 1987, when Elena Kovaleva of Rostov-on-Don found kids using a tiny kitten in a bag as a football. She managed to rescue the hurt and frightened animal and brought it back home with her. Despite her best efforts, the cat, named Varvara, could not grow hair, and when she gave birth, the litter was a mix of hairless and haired kittens.
Even those that were born with hair lost it over time, so they were discarded by their new owners. However, one of the kittens was rescued by a breeder who managed to create a whole new breed, which is now known as the Donskoy.
As you will see, this cat has a wiry, rat-like tail and a smooth pig belly, which puts it near the top of our list of the ugliest cat breeds of the world. In its defense, however, the Donskoy is intelligent, friendly, inquisitive and mild-mannered, and the wrinkles on its velvety skin can lend it the dignified appearance of a wise, old soul.
This breed is extremely social, not only with humans, but also with other animals, especially dogs.
With its slender, hairless form, and the wrinkles to go with it for effect, the Donskoy looks otherworldly, like something creepy from outer space… a sort of feline Alien! Aaaarrrggghh!
Remember the Sphynx? Well, here we have another experimental breed that originated in 2005, and has the Sphynx’s hairless, greasy, wrinkled looks and the Munchkins’ tiny legs.
The Bambino has a long, lean body and short stubby legs. However, this “dwarf cat” is surprisingly agile for being just shy of legless.
And it is said to be very playful and affectionate. Indeed, the Bambino would almost have to be able to lay on the charm. After all, it isn’t exactly built for fighting or running away from its problems.
In addition to having all the Sphinx’s problems, the Bambino needs regular sponge baths or the owner will find cat-shaped, oil smears on the furniture. It also needs special care from the sun and cold. And, of course, it is prone to kitty dandruff, rashes and earwax buildup. For a little cat, it can sure be a big mess!
Thus, this butt ugly little bambino claims the dubious honor of being chosen the ugliest cat breed on the planet!
Meow, Meow, Hooray!
BONUS: Ugly Bat Boy!
Some of the Ugliest Cats in the world are hard to identify in terms of their breed. And that was the case with this mixed bag of a weird cat, who was truly one of a kind. Not even the vet who did his exams could confidently state what breed Ugly Bat Boy was!
With no hair on his long, gray body except for a tangled and matted lion’s mane, Ugly Bat Boy had a deeply wrinkled face and head and a sweet, friendly disposition.
Ugly Bat Boy deserves an honorable mention as one of the ugliest cats in the world because he was an internet sensation with news articles, pictures and a large YouTube presence. He charmed us with his extra ugly looks and supernaturally affectionate mannerisms.
Ugly Bat Boy passed away in September of 2013 at the age of twelve, but not before collecting worldwide attention and an enthusiastic following. RIP, gentle sir.
P.S. Several videos of Ugly Bat Boy remain on YouTube as of the time of this writing. Here’s one of them: