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Maine coon cat with big fluffy tail

Any cat can exhibit a puffed-up tail if they become provoked or scared. However, some breeds have a naturally puffy tail all the time, even when they’re happy. Typically, longhaired breeds with thick fur, such as the ragdoll, are more likely to have bushy, long tails than others, but the fact is that anything is possible with mixed breeds. Since most rescue cats aren’t purebred, you could end up with a combination of cute features from shorthair and longhaired cats if you adopt a feline friend. If you favor a fluffy cat tail but you’re unsure which is best for you, our list of ten cat breeds with bushy tails is a great place to start.

1. Persian

In many ways, the flattened face of the Persian cat resembles the popular mug of the French bulldog and pug. Their long fur and short legs exaggerates their compact features, giving their bodies an adorable dwarfish appearance. The Persian’s relaxed demeanor makes them well-suited for owners who spend a lot of time indoors content to snuggle up on the sofa, such as elderly persons or introverts. Persians are a favorite breed among many fanciers, and make great family pets, too, as long as their personal space is respected by their humans.

Persian Cat Looking at the Camera

Facts about the Persian

  • Intelligence — High
  • Life span — 12-18 years

2. Ragdoll

Super cuddly and slow to grow up, the ragdoll is appropriately named and very kid-friendly. Their long, silky soft fur is a single coat that’s often solid white at first, but usually develops a pattern within their first couple years. They usually weigh around 15 pounds once they’re fully grown, which isn’t until they’re around 4 years old.

Ragdoll cat lying on a rug

Facts about the ragdoll

  • Intelligence — Average
  • Life span — 12-15 years

3. Maine coon

These gentle giants are one of the largest domesticated felines. Males can reach upwards of 20 pounds. Females are generally smaller in size, but still much larger than most average cat breeds. Their coats of these large cats often feature a range of colors, and, like the domestic shorthair, they generally have green eyes. Pet parents often train their Maine coon cats to walk with a cat harness outdoors for exercise. If you’re in a divided household where one person loves cats and the other prefers dogs, the Maine coon may be a compromise you could both live with.

Maine coon cat closeup

Facts about the Maine coon

  • Intelligence — High
  • Life span — 9-13 years

4. Norwegian forest cat

In their native land, the Norwegian forest cat is known as the “skogatt.” Their dense fur features an undercoat to protect them from snowy weather during harsh winters. In the U.S., they’re more popularly recognized as being the longhaired ancestor of the Maine coon. Both breeds are very similar, each known for their large size and sporting a long luxurious coat, but the difference is that the Norwegian forest cat weighs a few pounds less and they have almond-shaped eyes instead of round.

Norwegian forest cat in snow

Facts about the Norwegian forest cat

  • Intelligence — High
  • Life span — 14-16 years

5. Turkish angora

Ages of inbreeding in the Turkish mountains resulted in a predominantly white breed in which kittens are unfortunately often born deaf. Strikingly blue eyes also characterize the Turkish angora, but other colors are possible. It’s also fairly common for them to have odd-colored eyes, such as one blue eye and one green. The Turkish angora was actually used as a breeding stock to produce Persian cats, so much that they almost went extinct themselves. The Angora Zoo helped to bring the breed back, and still raises them today. If you’re lucky enough to find this rare kitty, expect to care for a sociable, highly intelligent cat with a long silky coat.

Person grooming a Turkish Angora cat

Facts about the Turkish angora

  • Intelligence — High
  • Life span — 9-14 years

6. Birman

Hailed as “The sacred cat of Burma,” the birman cat traditionally accompanied priests in The Temple of Lao-Tsun, but now quietly reside beside their pet parents in living rooms around the world. The birman is a large, longhaired, and affectionate breed that thrives on attention and is content to be always at your side. Their white coat displays patterns and points similar to the Siamese cat. According to the breed standard set by the Cat Fanciers’ Association, their eyes are always blue.

Birman cat closeup

Facts about the birman

  • Intelligence — High
  • Life span —  9-13 years

7. Himalayan 

The Himalayan cat is a hybrid breed between the Persian and Siamese. This beautiful cat retains the steely blue eyes of the Siamese, while sporting the Persian’s stocky build, long hair, and relative tail length. They tend to be gentle, calm, and intelligent, which makes them a prime candidate as a family pet.

Himalayan cat closeup

Facts about the Himalayan

  • Intelligence — Average
  • Life span — 9-15 years

8. Balinese

If you’re thinking the Balinese looks eerily similar to the Siamese, there’s a reason for that. The Balinese is a longhaired cat with a single coat that was recently derived from the Siamese. These cute cats originated in the United States during the 1960s due to a genetic mutation that allowed for long hair in the Siamese. They have no real ties to Indonesia, but were named after temple dancers in Bali. Like their oriental ancestors, the Balinese is an extremely intelligent cat who loves to talk. They’re generally good with kids and other pets.

Balinese cat in a garden

Facts about the Balinese

  • Intelligence — High
  • Life span — 12-20 years

9. Nebelung

This “creature of the mist” seems more akin to legend than truth. Long, silky blue hair with soft green eyes characterize the Nebelung, which has a German name despite its American origin. The Nebelung was created during the 1980s as a cross between the domestic shorthair and the Russian blue. Some people simply refer to them as longhaired Russian blue cats, but they are recognized as a separate breed by the International Cat Association. The Nebelung tends to be reserved at first, but they’re extremely affectionate once they warm up to their new parents.

Nebelung cat outside

Facts about the Nebelung

  • Intelligence — High
  • Life span — 15-18 years

10. Somali

Fluffy, auburn, and fiercely adorable, the Somali has energy to burn. They do best with owners who have time and patience to spend on them, as they develop some rascally tendencies when left to their own devices. This breed originating in Australia is still somewhat rare in the United States, but their popularity is growing as more people learn about them. Somalis spotted in backyards are sometimes mistaken for wild animals, such as foxes.

Ginger Somali cat

Facts about the Somali

  • Intelligence — High
  • Life span — 12-14 years

How to groom a cat with a bushy tail

The attractive flounce of a fluffy tail can be a defining factor when deciding which cat to adopt. However, most cats with especially fluffy tails will require special care to keep in tip-top shape. If you bring home a longhaired cat, it’s essential to groom them correctly to avoid matting in their gorgeous tresses. If a longhaired cat becomes excessively matted, they may have to be sedated and trimmed by a veterinarian.

Even though cats love to groom themselves, mats can easily form in hard-to-reach areas, such as under their armpits. Longhaired cats need to be brushed daily to prevent matting. Choosing the correct grooming tool depends on their coat type, so it’s important to familiarize yourself with your cat’s hair type before you begin.

Do not use a deshedding tool  on a cat with a single coat. Deshedding tools are excellent for removing undercoats in double-coated cats, but single-coated cats don’t have an undercoat, so these tools can damage their delicate fur when used as intended.

Most cats with bushy tails have long hair that may have a single or double coat depending on the breed. For example, the Turkish angora has a single silky coat, while the Norwegian forest cat is equipped with a waterproof double coat for surviving cold climates.

Most long-haired cats need to be combed in addition to being brushed, especially if they have a double coat. All long-haired cats benefit from a slicker brush, as long as it’s gentle enough not to rip their delicate hair.

How to choose which fluffy cat breed is for you 

All of the breeds in this article have naturally bushy tails, but may not have much else in common. This diversity allows you the freedom to choose a pet based on personality and lifestyle rather than purely physical characteristics like a cat’s tail. For example, the Siamese is a very vocal and intelligent breed who may drive you crazy if you’re wanting a cat who keeps the peace. The quiet Nebelung is perfect if you want an affectionate cuddler, but may spend most of its time under the bed in a house with loud children. Researching breeds that compliment your temperament and environment is a crucial step to making the perfect match for any prospective pet owner.