10 Top Cat Breeds That Are Smaller-Sized

Learn more about these petite purring machines

Devon rex small cat breed portrait

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Small cat breeds make popular pets because of their compact size and cute features. Larger cat breeds tip the scales at 15 pounds (or more), while the smallest members of the feline family often weigh 5 to 10 pounds. Their height may vary, since some small cat breeds have lanky legs and others, like the munchkin, stand less than 10 inches tall at the shoulder. They come in a wide range of coats, colors, and unique features to distinguish one small cat breed from the next.


When it comes to feeding a cat, a high-quality cat food is the best bet for the long run. A premium cat food can save you money. Many cheap foods add fillers that don't have all the nutrients a cat needs in a single serving. Felines eat until they get all their nutrients—sometimes eating twice as much of a cheaper food (also fattening on fillers in the process). If you think you've saved money, you haven't; you've spent as much, likely more.

Breed Characteristics

Besides retaining their kitten-cute features into adulthood many of the smaller breed tend to have a playful, spry predisposition. These cats tend to be energetic, intelligent, and a few can be cuddly and affectionate.

Take a look the top 10 small cat breeds that have left a big impression on the feline world.

  • 01 of 10


    Singapura cat

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    Generally regarded as the smallest cat breed, this tiny cat matures to a weight of 4 to 8 pounds. The Singapura's origins are from Singapore and has become a darling of the cat world for its diminutive size and adorable, captivating eyes. Though pint-sized, it still has plenty of love to give. These cats are known to be lovable and playful pets. The Singapura has a surprisingly muscular body and athletic abilities that will impress you despite the breed’s small stature.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 6 to 8 inches

    Weight: 4 to 8 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Petite but muscular stature; rounded head and large eyes

  • 02 of 10


    Munchkin cat

    Nazra Zahri / Getty Images


    Munchkins are shortest cat breed in the world. These cats have a naturally occurring genetic mutation that results in shorter legs, giving these cats a low stature of 7 to 9 inches at the shoulder. The shortest adult cat according to the Guinness World Records is a munchkin from Napa, California, named Lilieput, measuring 5.25 inches tall in 2013. There is some controversy in the cat world whether it is ethical to continue to breed the short-legged munchkin. The International Cat Association recognizes the munchkin as a registered breed, while the Cat Fanciers' Association does not.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 7 to 9 inches

    Weight: 6 to 9 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Short or longhaired coat, round face; average body length with short legs

  • 03 of 10

    Cornish Rex

    Cornish rex cat

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    The long legs and angular features of the Cornish rex might give you the impression that this cat is larger than it really is. These cats typically stand 11 to 15 inches tall but only weigh 6 to 10 pounds. These cats are all legs. The Cornish rex is notable for its many unique features, including a coat of tight, short curls and over-sized ears with prominent eyes and cheekbones. This breed originated in England, but has been gaining in popularity the world over for its striking look and engaging personality.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 11 to 15 inches

    Weight: 6 to 10 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Tight, curly short hair with a triangular head and over-sized, wide-set ears

  • 04 of 10

    American Curl

    American curl cat breed portrait

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    The most recognizable feature of the American Curl is its uniquely shaped ears, but these cats are also petite in size. This breed matures to a weight up to 12 pounds, with females in particular staying small and weighing 8 pounds or less. The soft, silky fur of the American Curl can be short or semi-long, adding to the fluff-factor of this small cat breed. They’re not known to be lap cats but still have an affectionate, playful nature and make excellent pets.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 9 to 12 inches

    Weight: 12 pounds or less

    Physical Characteristics: Soft, silky short or semi-long coat; ears that curl backwards

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10

    Devon Rex

    White Devon Rax on Cat Perch

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    The Devon rex is also sometimes referred to as a “pixie cat,” so it’s no surprise that this breed is on the list of small cat breeds. When full-grown, the Devon rex maintains a compact weight of just 6 to 9 pounds. The breed’s triangular head, large ears, and bright eyes give these cats a kitten-like appearance throughout their life.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 10 to 12 inches

    Weight: 6 to 9 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Fine to medium bone structure with broad chest and triangular head; soft, thin, curly coat

  • 06 of 10

    Japanese Bobtail

    Japanese bobtail outside

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    The short, pom-like tail isn’t the only thing that’s small about this cat breed—the Japanese bobtail only weighs 5 to 10 pounds and matures to a height of just 8 or 9 inches. These cats have a slender body and fine features. They originated in Asia, and their big claim to fame is protecting Japan’s silk trade from a rodent invasion in the early 1600’s. At one time, they were the most commonly sighted street cat in Japan. Today, the popular cat is an active, intelligent housepet. 

    Breed Overview

    Height: 8 to 9 inches

    Weight: 5 to 10 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Petite; docked, fluffy tail; coats can come in a wide variety of colors and patterns, including white, black, cream, lilac, red, blue, bi-colored, and tri-colored, among others

  • 07 of 10


    A Siamese cat looking into the camera.

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    The Siamese is one of the oldest cat breeds, and it also happens to be among the smallest. While these cats are relatively long in length, they are lean and muscular and typically only weigh 8 to 12 pounds. Females, in particular, stay small and often weigh 8 pounds or less. Though they may be small, this vocal cat breed will make its presence and preferences known.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 8 to 10 inches

    Weight: 6 to 14 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Long body with fine to medium bone structure; short coat in colors like seal, blue, lilac, and chocolate with colorpoints around the face, ears, paws, and tail

  • 08 of 10


    Burmanese male cat laying down
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    Burmese cats are smaller than average with a compact, stocky body and big brain. An average Burmese weighs between 6 to 14 pounds and 10 to 12 inches in height. They use their smarts to solve pet puzzles and perform tricks like playing fetch with their toys.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 10 to 12 inches

    Weight: 6 to 14 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Short coat; sable, champagne, platinum, and blue; green or gold eye color

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10


    Two LaPerm cats lie in the scratching post and look into the camera.
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    LaPerms have unusual, coiled fur, so named because it looks like they got a curly perm. This small, affectionate cat weighs about 5 to 8 pounds. The breed was developed by Linda and Dick Koehl, from Oregon in the early 1980s. This cat's looks were the result of a mutation that formed from cats bred for pest control.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 6 to 10 inches

    Weight: 5 to 8 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Soft, somewhat long hair with tight curls or waves; comes in every color and pattern, although most common colors are ginger, tabby, and tortie; eye colors include copper, gold, aqua, yellow, blue, or green

  • 10 of 10


    Abyssinian Cat on White
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    Abys weigh 6 to 9 pounds and are one of the oldest cat breeds in the world. They are intelligent, energetic, and clownish at times. They like hanging out with their people to the point that the might even get separation anxiety if left alone too long. Its colorful coat of reds, browns, and blues and patterns gives them a wild cat appearance.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 8 to 10 inches

    Weight: 6 to 9 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: A silky, short-to-medium length coat; colors range from ruddy, red, blue, cinnamon, or fawn; eye colors are usually green or gold

Breeds to Avoid

It goes without saying that if you want a smaller-than-average cat, you'll need to pass on breeds that are known for their large size. The Maine coon, pixie-bob, Bengal, ragamuffin are just a few of the largest cat breeds. Keep in mind that a kitten's size isn't always a good judge of how big it will be when full-grown. Whenever possible, ask to see the parents of the litter to better estimate what your kitten's adult size will be.