Dog-like cats are actually a thing! True story!
Believe it or not, not all cats are aloof or just sort of “meh” about having a human in the house.
While pretty much any cat can behave in a dog-like manner – I’ve had a couple of random felines who loved belly rubs – some breeds are certainly more canine-like than others.
These breeds are known for their friendliness and actually enjoyment of their family.
None of these breeds show the classic “cat” personality that has become the source of so many jokes.
Rather, all of these breeds enjoy being around the family, and many of them do well with other pets, as well.
Let’s check them out!
1. Savannah Cats
I actually owned a Savannah, and this breed will always top my list of dog-like cats.
Achieved by crossing a short-haired domestic cat with an African Serval, Savannah Cats are incredibly dog-like.
Fair warning, these cats are far larger than standard house cats.
In fact, they’re among the largest cat breeds that you can actually adopt.
They are easily trained and they love to play in the water, walk on leashes, and even play with other pets.
However, they may not be the best choice if you want a cat that loves everyone equally.
They tend to bond very strongly with just one person. So, in that respect, they’re a lot like, say, a Shiba Inu dog.
2. American Bobtail
The American Bobtail is another highly affectionate and trainable breed that tends to act more canine than feline.
As the name implies, he has a very short little stump of a tail.
His tail is naturally that way, in case you were worried that it was the result of clipping.
According to Cat Fancier, the breed “was developed by natural selection to survive feral environments.”
Think about it- tails are extremely easy for predators to grab.
In fact, we have a feral kitty in our neighborhood that lost part of her tail when a dog grabbed it!
Bobtails are people-oriented and excellent with other pets and children.
They are active cats that really enjoy playing with their family- and that includes their fellow four-legged pals!
Like dogs, they’re also highly trainable, thanks to their incredible intelligence.
He may look like a miniature cheetah or ocelot, but the Ocicat has absolutely no wild DNA at all!
Descended from the interbreeding of Abyssinian, Siamese, and American Shorthair cats, Ocicats are purely domesticated felines.
They also happen to be very dog-like cats who are highly trainable.
They are known for following their people around the house, being very playful, and even coming when called.
Ocicats are also huge cuddle bugs who love nothing more than curling up on your lap to watch TV.
If you want a dog-like cat that is basically the feline equivalent of a lap dog, then the Ragdoll is for you.
They get their name not from their looks but from their personality.
They go completely limp when held or sitting in a lap.
These mild-mannered cats love people and other dogs and cats.
How cute is this Ragdoll acting like a canine?
5. Maine Coon
Maine Coons are dog-like cats in both personality and size.
One of the largest domestic cat breeds, the Maine Coon can top out at 20+ pounds, and I’ve even seen them a bit bigger than that at the vet.
In addition to their dog-like size, this bred is known for being devoted, playful, and loving with their family – human and otherwise.
Although their look may take some getting used to at first, these dog-like cats more than make up for their… unique… look with a personality that is just so awesome.
These cats are known for pestering their owners for attention, following them around, and even wagging their tales at them.
Not only do they act like dogs, but these hilarious kitties in the video below even team up to annoy their favorite dog!
These are dog-like cats on almost every level.
In addition to following their owners around and loving a good game of fetch, these guys can actually become depressed if their owners leave them along for too long.
So, they’re really not the best choice if you work outside the home all day!
8. American Curl
Known for their curled back ears and winning personality, these guys have all the traits you find in dog-like cats.
PetGuide calls them “nothing short of outstanding,” and we couldn’t agree more.
The American Curl full of energy and absolutely love playing with every member of their families.
At the same time, they are also incredibly loving and thoroughly enjoy children.
Cats are so independent that when they snuggle up with you, they make you feel like you’re the most special person in the world.
When that purr box gets going, your heart just melts!
Dog-Like Cats are the Best of Both Worlds
As an owner of both dogs and cats, I’ve often said that I’d either love a dog who potty trained himself like cats, or a cat that behaved more like a dog when it comes to trainability!
So, these dog-like cats really are the best of both worlds!
These dog-like cats have all the traits we love about dogs with the added bonus of ease of potty training a cat!
As always, make adoption your first option.
There are cats for days in your local shelter who desperately need a forever home.
If you have your heart set on a specific cat, you’d be surprised at how many breed-specific rescues there are out there.
Nice post. For some reason, I love dogs more than cats. This is how u have been from childhood.
I was always a dog person for 45 years. Then I got together with a woman who was a cat person…. Hence, now I love cats! I don’t believe it! ?
Yes! BURMESE…. Isagold & Bettyblue are definitely cat-dogs!
I totally agree. My Auggie isn’t pure blooded but he’s a beautiful sable Brown with beautiful golden eyes. Follows me everywhere I go. Loves to cuddle.
I have a tuxedo cat that thinks she’s a dog. She prefers to go outside to using the litter box and doesn’t mind car rides. On top of that she says meowma and no! She’s my brat but I’ve loved her for almost 10 years and she’s still a spry baby ???
My cat is a Burmese and definitely dog like.
I think the saying Cats Rule & Dogs Drool!
Came from the Disney movie “ Homeward Bound”
Great list but definitely miss the Devon Rex…. ???♀️ Most «dog like » cat on earth! ?
Love Devon Rex. They are
like dogs without the maintenance or aggression. They are so sweet.
Devon Rex for sure! They are loyal, follow me around, play fetch, go for walks and so affectionate. Mine even prefer dogs over cats!
I agree with you on the Devon Rex. Mine plays fetch and follows me everywhere. Comes when called and will jump into my arms from the floor (of course has to be in the right mood). Pretty dog like though.
And the Russian blues – mine plays fetch better than my dog.
I had 2 Maine Coon’s and they were my favorite cats. I would get one again but my son is allergic. Both my Maine Coon’s enjoyed being loved on and would come running when called, unless they were dead asleep hiding in one if their favorite spots. I tease my Yorkie that he is cat-like. He rubs all over my legs and will leave between them.
I used to call my cat masin Kadog. I miss him so. After 15yrs he passed from apparent kidney failure. Miss ya Masin
We owned a chocolate brown Burmese cat and she was more like a dog than any other cat I know. very affectionate and loving. miss her a lot.
Sounds like my Auggie. He’s a beautiful sable brown. That’s what the vet calls him.
my cat is just a plain ole yellow kitty. His name is Bob. If my ph rings Bob acts like it is for him, He hears the elevator before Anyone does. He waits to see if they are coming here . If someone is getting off the elevator n coming here he waits til they open the door to my apt. when they open the door he runs. He likes to play ball, plays with bread ties. loves to climb. I have had Bob for 5 years n I would be lost without him.
I have a Bombay. He is my “puppy “! Follows commands, requires lots of hugs and petting and returns “ the love”!
Also have a Very shy,sweet Tortie! Very much. Cat! Both are affected toward humans and get along well. But the Bombay is quite the special companion!
I had a beautiful main coon. He was so loving and I miss him so much. Hurricane passed away at 2 1/2 yrs old vet said he had a enlarged heart, and she put him to sleep. He was gasping for air but started out losing control of his legs. I miss him but I also have 3 bob tails that r amazing. They walk in leashes play ball and anything u ask of them. Love riding in my truck and going to watch me barrel race. They love watching me and we’ll be ready to go find me after I race. To funny. We all miss our big boy thought he rip Hurricane we love u.
All my cats have been dumped as kittens and left for dead. This cats r full blooded had them all tested for DNA
I just been lucky that they were dumped by my farm bc they dumped them at a safe living home.
I have 9 short-hair domestic cats. Several of them come when I call them, play fetch and actually bring the things back (so long as it’s their favorite. For example hair ties, pennies, catnip fish, little mice – each one has their own). But my Georgie, may she rip, would cry to be with the dogs. She preferred sleeping with them over my other 2 cats. Yeah, 9 now. What was I thinking!
My cats a Bengal and follows me around, sleeps next to me and will fetch! When a toy mouse is thrown.
I have a tuxedo cat named Brittany and she is a big cat and very very loving. She follows me around and always sleeps right by me at night. She also loves to go outside and sit on my lap on the porch and greets me at the door when I come home. Her sister (who is in heaven now) was a retriever. She would retrieve a thrown toy and if we weren’t paying attention, she would find a toy in her toy basket and bring it to our feet and drop it there. If we didn’t play right away she’d pick it up and drop it again!!
I had a Russian blue named Toby that passed away in June at the age of 19. He loved to play with the neighbors dogs. He would seek out my 2 year old grandson to love on. He even used to change my answering machine message. He was always more like a dog than a cat.
I have a 20 year young chocolate point Siamese named Scooter who herds us to bed at 8:30p and wakes us up with a yowl in the morning. He is my seventh Siamese, all of whom fetched, herded, protected, and seemed dog-like , except that they were a bit more independent.
Tonkinese are just like dogs. Greet you at the door, follow you around, bring a toy back in their mouth and will walk on a leash. They are very intelligent. I have one following the death of my Siamese. Mind you, dogs don’t climb on everything high or shoot up your curtains!
I agree -I love my Tonkinese kittens – both are amazing and very expressive with their face. They are true members of the family.
I love these kinds of cats. We have a ragdoll and yup, he acts like a puppy sometimes.
These all sound like awesome breeds. We used to have a Savanna cat, and he acted JUST like a dog.
One of my cats growing up acted more like a dog than a cat! She would even drool and try to bark. We didn’t even have a dog. I thought it was fascinating!
I have a Tortoise Shell/ Siamese blend she had a feral Siamese mother. She was the runt. Her brother Is a beautiful big pure black cat. They are 9 months old. She is still a little peanut. Slim, long tail, she fetches and returns her toy. She is sweet but not a lap cat. She follows me every where I go. My last cat was 21 when she passed. My sister lives upstairs she has the male big boy.
I’m a little embarrassed to admit this, but I had no idea there were a bunch of cat breeds. I only ever heard of a few!
Sounds like the perfect pet for a couple who cant decide between dog or cat. These cats sound very cool.
This is interesting to know. I have two cats of my own. Sometimes I think they act like dogs too. They can be a bit crazy at times.
Although we had a cat for 15 years, I consider myself a dog person. Our cat had some special needs and was fairly dog like. If we ever get another cat, I would like to adopt one of these breeds or another dog-like cat.
I have a friend who has a sokoke, which is similar to a bengal or savannah mix. He acts just like a dog!
Really interesting post. I’ve only heard of a couple of breeds and having a cat that acts like a dog is interesting. I love the idea of having a larger cat, but the hairless cat, I just don’t know. They kind of creep me out a bit. 😉
If we get a car we definitely want one that acts like a dog so that she can get along with our dog.
I will definitely bookmark this page for the future. I think I would like a cat that acts more than a dog and it’s still a cat 🙂
I had Maine Coon so I know exactly what you’re talking about. So weird but again it was fun to have a not-typical-cat cat. I didn’t know there are so many breeds acting like this.
I currently have savannahs. F-4 so they’re not as huge as some but I can honestly say they are the most intelligent cats I have ever had. I had a huge maine coon tuxedo named Rufus McTavish, who was a really fun cat too.
Siberian Forest cats, Oscar was my puppy-cat for 17 years.
I have a Siberian, Luna, and couldn’t agree more. Cuddles, follows commands, and can even take her on walks with a leash! She’s a sweet heart! All the advantages of owning a cat with great dog characteristics. Only issue is when we play fetch, she’ll run after the toy and expect us to come to her to throw it again so she can chase it. 🙂
Loved this post. I have never thought of cats like dogs. Interesting breeds you discussed.
I was given a barn kitten many years ago that i have no idea the breed, but she was absolutely more dog like than cat like. She LOVED playing fetch, more than my little dogs do now. She was so fun!
I’ve always been curious about dog-like cats. I wanted a cat and a dog when I was a kid but could not have both so my parents bought me American Bobtail
Interesting to know these kinds of cats. I agree with cats giving the best cuddles. they’re the best!
I am getting a Siberian kitty in a few weeks. I can’t wait. I did read about this breed being doglike.
Very informative post! Our cat is something else not sure what breed but super smart and cuddly. More of a laid-back type of cat…lol
I have to say that I had no idea about some cat breeds being dog-like. Abyssinians look really cute.
It is funny how some cats are more dog like! We have a cat that is constantly begging, bringing toys, and acting overall more like a dog!
I’m a dog person, but I like cats too. I would love to be able to adopt a Ragdoll cat someday. We recently adopted a little gray tabby, and she seems to be picking up some of our dogs’ traits, so that makes me happy.
My husband has been anti cat for years claiming he’s a “dog person”. Hoping that showing him this list will help convince him to let us finally get one!
I have had a few cats over the years since adulthood. We as a family, before then, were fond of our cats. I had a beautiful black cat that recently passed. I now have a red/orange male Maine Coon. My GF who was a dog person says he is very much like a dog. He loves to grab her straws from her drinks and we will find them anywhere. Even being carried from room to room. He has many “toys” that he will take from his Cat tree house and can be found anywhere, to be picked up and put back. Then he takes them out and carries them everywhere again. He wants to go outside and has a few times, Thank god I was able to catch him the last time. I am getting him used to a leash and harness. He does go for walks with me and the neighbor love him and say how huge he is. At only a year and a quarter old, he is all I ever wanted in a cat. And my girl has her ‘dog’ to keep her company. He sleeps with us every night at our feet and wakes her up to be fed first thing. A very handsome/beautiful cat. Now at over 16lbs, I’m sure. Vet appt. tomorrow will say how much he actually weighs. When he was 5 months old and getting neutered he was weighed in at 14 plus lbs. Smart cat for sure. He loves to chatter, trill, and meow like he is having a conversation at times.
Well I didn’t know some cats acted like dogs. I suppose it gives you the best of both lol.
My main coon acted more like a dog than he did a cat. I miss that cat.
My kitten now seems to have some ocicat in her. She is around two dogs and fits in nicely. But she will follow me around everywhere I go. Plus, she has to eat with the dogs. She will steal dog food too.
Such pretty and interesting breeds although it’s honestly hard to say exactly how one cat will act when compared to another because they’re all just so full of personality. I honestly can’t advocate enough for choosing to adopt pets though, and rescues do a great job making character profiles for older cats with more developed personalities :).
Awesome post, it’s very informative and very detailed! I’ll definitely prefer the American Bobtail and the Ragdoll. Loved them!
I’ve only had 2 cats in my life and they both have been very “dog like.” Super friendly and very social!
I didn’t know there were cats that favored canine behaviors. My youngest granddaughter just got a hairless cat. She loves that cat so much!
This is perfect in our case: one of my kids wants a dog, another wants a cat. The Ragdoll breed can be a perfect compromise!