Felines are notorious for disliking water, but why is that? And do all cats hate being around the water? Believe it or not, there are reasons felines aren’t fond of water, and there are some kitties that absolutely love water! Admittedly, there aren’t a ton of them, but the ones that do often enjoy playing in water and drinking straight from the faucet while you try to brush your teeth.
If you’re in the market for a water-loving feline, we’ve got you covered! We’ve pulled together a list of the top ten cat breeds that have a fondness for water, so you can find the kitty that’s just right for you. Keep reading to learn more about these fabulous cat breeds!
Why Do Felines Dislike Water So Much?
So, just why do our four-legged friends hate being around water so much? There are a few reasons, and they’re all pretty sensible!
One reason cats dislike water is their sense of smell. Cats have an exceptional sense of smell, much better than ours, so they can pick up scents and odors that we can’t. Think about how our drinking water is chemically treated to keep it clean, and then imagine how many of those chemical smells your kitty is picking up. You might avoid water too if you could smell all that!
Then there’s the fact that when a cat is wet, the water weighs it down. It’s bad enough for us when we get caught in the rain, get soaked, and have our clothes weighing us down; imagine how much worse it would be with fur! For this reason, you’ll find several of the felines that like water have short or no hair at all.
Finally, a lot of it comes down to feline history and instinct. Many cat breeds developed in dry or desert areas, so they didn’t come across bodies of water often or have opportunities to try out swimming. So, even if your pet has had the chance to be around water, it still has that history that goes, “This is unusual, and I don’t like it.”
The 10 Cat Breeds that Like Water
If you’re looking for a kitty that loves to play in the water and is incredibly high-energy, then the Abyssinian is the cat for you! Believed to be one of the oldest breeds ever, these felines are independent, playful, and active, which is a temperament that lends itself to adventures with water (and this kitty is supposedly excellent at swimming!). However, this isn’t the breed for you if it’s a lap cat you seek; the active nature of this feline means it’s in constant motion and always on the move. The Abyssinian will still be affectionate and loyal to its family; you just can’t expect it to sit still for long!
The Bengal is a beautiful and exotic-looking feline with a fondness for water that might have been inherited from its Asian leopard cat ancestors (as the Asian leopard cat often lives around bodies of water). These cats are fearless, even around water, so you might find yours in the shower with you or even in your pool! The Bengal is also incredibly athletic, active, and fabulous at learning tricks. There will be no end to the fun with one of these felines.
3. British Shorthair
Cat breeds that are intensely curious about everything, like this one, are often fascinated by anything that moves, including water. That results in kitty hopping into the shower with you, trying to splash water while it comes from the faucet, or having a fondness for toys that float. The British Shorthair is also intelligent and loves to be involved with every single thing that happens in the household, so you’ll find yourself with a tiny shadow if you adopt one of these felines. However, they aren’t overly affectionate, so you might not get many snuggles.
4. Egyptian Mau
The Egyptian Mau is ancient and the only naturally spotted domesticated feline. You might recognize them after seeing them in paintings from ancient Egypt or for the well-known way they appear to walk on their tip-toes. This breed is also one of the fastest around; it can go as fast as 30 miles per hour! As a pet, you’ll find this cat to be adventurous and energetic, which means it has absolutely no qualms about getting near or in water. The fact this breed used to accompany duck hunters might explain why they still enjoy water, too.
5. Maine Coon
The Maine Coon (the “World’s Largest Domestic Cat”) is a gentle giant with a heavy, floofy coat you wouldn’t think would do well with being wet. However, those thick coats are water-resistant, so they’re purr-fect for playing in water! And because the ancestors of the Maine Coon worked as mousers on ships, being afraid of getting wet isn’t in this cat’s DNA. And if you’re worried that thick coat will be a pain to deal with, you’ll be glad to know it really isn’t; you only need to brush it out regularly, and it should be kept fairly tangle-free! This cat’s coat isn’t the only thing low-maintenance about it; in general, this breed is low-maintenance and laidback.
6. Norwegian Forest Cat
Maine Coons aren’t the only felines with water-resistant coats; the Norwegian Forest Cat has one, as well! They’re also the second-largest domestic feline breed after the Maine Coon, and they, too, had ancestors that worked as mousers on ships (most likely Viking ships). That means, like the Maine Coon, this breed isn’t afraid of water in the slightest. In fact, the Norwegian Forest Cat is pretty good at fishing (so it’s probably a good idea to keep them away from any aquariums in the home!). This breed is highly independent, so they don’t make great lap cats, but they are affectionate, so you’ll still be able to get a few cuddles in. They’re also playful and curious, so be prepared for mischief!
These felines are descendants of the African Serval, and they are one large kitty! Not only are they bigger than many cat breeds, but these felines also act more like canines. The Savannah cat is more than happy to walk on a leash or paddle around in a pool. Inside the home, you’ll often find them splashing the water in their water dishes or chilling in the bathtub. These exotic-looking kitties love to play and need a lot of exercise, so don’t expect them to lay on the sofa with you while you watch TV; instead, you’ll be running around enjoying plenty of interaction!
8. Selkirk Rex
This adorable cat breed is pretty much a teddy bear, not only in looks but in cuddliness! The Selkirk Rex is also intensely curious and wildly playful, meaning they will love playing with water while you’re in the shower or doing dishes. And because these kitties despise being alone, they’ll follow you everywhere you go. They’re incredibly loving felines, though, so having this little shadow won’t be a hassle at all!
The Sphynx is a cat that doesn’t have a natural affinity for water. But because these hairless felines need to be bathed on a regular basis to keep their skin healthy, it means the Sphynx is introduced to water during kittenhood and typically grows to like being in it. Of course, a hairless cat might not be for everyone since some people aren’t fond of the look, and all that bathing requires some work. However, if you do adopt one of these cute cats, you’ll find yourself with a hilarious companion that loves attention and to entertain. The Sphynx also gets along well with most cats and dogs, so they do well in multi-pet households!
10. Turkish Angora
This Turkish breed has long hair, but it still loves water. In fact, the Turkish Angora will often come running when it hears a sink or shower running! Be prepared to have this cat playing with anything and everything in your home involving water. And be ready for lots of playtime, as this breed is highly active and needs to get plenty of activity each day. The Turkish Angora is also a cat breed that can be leash-trained if you want to enjoy a nice walk with your pet!
If you’re eager to adopt a water-loving feline, you have plenty of options! Whether you want a longhair, shorthair, or completely hairless cat, there’s something on this list for you. Just remember to do research and learn all you can about any breed you’re considering adopting so you know what all is involved in caring for it. There’s more to a kitty than whether it has an affinity for water, after all!
Featured Image Credit: Nils Jacobi, Shutterstock