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Tuxedo Ragdoll Cat: Facts, Origin & History (With Pictures)

Length: 9 – 11 inches
Weight: 10 – 20 pounds
Lifespan: 13 – 18 years
Colors: White, blue/gray, silver/lavender, red/orange, brown/chocolate/sable, black/ebony, cream/beige/tan, lilac
Suitable for: Families with children, first-time cat owners, and homes with other pets
Temperament: Loyal, friendly, easy to train, easy to groom, happy to be picked up, gets along with other pets

The Ragdoll is a charming, almost larger-than-life cat with stunning blue eyes and a generous disposition. There are many different coat colors and several coat patterns present in the breed. The term “tuxedo” describes a very specific coat color and pattern, rather than a breed—and the name gives a clue as to its appearance. Kitties with a tuxedo coat have a distinguished air about them and would not look out of place sipping martinis with James Bond!

The black and white bi-color tuxedo coat can be found in many different purebred and mixed-breed kitties. Most often cats with this coat are predominantly black with a white chest, neck, face markings, and points, but white can sometimes be the dominant color.

A trademark of the Ragdoll breed is their enchanting, kind blue eyes. Ragdolls can be a variety of different colors. Chances are that if your Ragdoll is not one of the many colors or patterns listed above, then it may have a bit of mixed blood in it. This is unlikely to diminish its delightful personality, which is a dominant aspect of the breed.

Ragdolls may exhibit a tuxedo coat together with those signature blue eyes. If so, the blue eyes could point to pure breeding. However, and more likely, despite its blue eyes, its genes have been mixed or diluted somewhere in its ancestry. We’ll touch on this again later.

The tuxedo coat is common amongst a huge variety of cat breeds. It is most frequently observed in male cats but not uncommon in females.

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Tuxedo Ragdoll Cat Breed Characteristics


The Earliest Records of Tuxedo Ragdoll Cats in History

The Ragdoll is a fairly recent breed of cat. Its origins can be accurately pinpointed to a Californian woman who bred the first ones in the 1960s. Ann Baker crossed a white Persian female cat with a Birman (or Birman-type) male. The resulting kittens were so unique in looks and behavior that she decided to selectively breed them. They acquired their name from the distinctive way that they go limp and relaxed when they are picked up.

The history of the tuxedo, also known affectionately as a “tuxie”, “Felix cat” and “Jellicle cat”, is not well documented. This is because it is a color and pattern, rather than a breed.

It’s impossible to say exactly when tuxies first appeared in human society. However, they were certainly already around in ancient Egyptian times as tomb explorations have revealed.

How Tuxedo Ragdoll Cats Gained Popularity

The tuxedo cat is striking and distinctive, and over the ages, it has been singled out and highlighted in many contexts. Tuxies in popular media began to emerge from the early 1900s. Think about Dr Seuss’ “The Cat In The Hat”, Felix the Cat, and Sylvester from The Looney Tunes. Some people claim that tuxies are smarter than cats of other colors.

The Ragdoll breed did not take long to establish itself as one of the most popular. Given the incredible nature and beauty of these cats, it was inevitable. Much like tuxie lovers, Ragdoll aficionados claim that they are more intelligent than other breeds.

Ragdolls are famously owned by several celebrities. Taylor Swift has a bi-color seal Ragdoll called Benjamin Button. Seth Green, Sylvester Stallone and Dannii Minogue also adore their Ragdolls.

Tuxedo ragdoll cat lying on the floor
Image Credit: Liao Zhiwo Henry, Shutterstock

Formal Recognition of Tuxedo Ragdoll Cats

In terms of formal recognition, the tuxedo Ragdoll cat is not one of the recognized variations of the Ragdoll cat breed. However, unless you are intent on showing your Ragdoll, this is inconsequential.

The CFA, ACFA (American Cat Fanciers’ Association), TICA (The International Cat Association) and CFF (Cat Fanciers’ Federation) recognize the Ragdoll in the color and coat pattern variations outlined earlier in this article. Tuxedo Ragdolls are thought to be of impure breeding, and as such, are not included in the register.

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Top 6 Unique Facts About Tuxedo Ragdoll Cats

1. The Tuxedo Coat Results From the Interaction Between Two Genes

A kitty’s tuxedo coat is thought to result from a random interaction between two genes during embryonic development. This is in contrast to most cat coloration and coat patterns, which result from inheritance. The two genes involved are the one that imparts a black coat and the one that results in white spotting.

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2. In 2021, the Ragdoll Was Named the Most Popular Cat Breed in the World

In 2021 the Ragdoll was named the most popular cat breed in the world by the Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA). The people have spoken, and we agree!

Tuxedo Ragdoll cat in the garden
Image Credit: Donna la, Shutterstock
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3. Tuxedos Have Been the Pets of Famous Historical Figures

Many famous and important historical figures have kept a tuxie as a pet. William Shakespeare, Sir Isaac Newton, and Beethoven are all said to have owned a tuxedo cat. A tuxie has even lived in the Whitehouse as Bill Clinton’s pet during his term in office.

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4. Ragdoll Cats Are at Risk of Developing Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy

Although they are considered a healthy breed, Ragdolls are genetically predisposed to a heart condition called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). It is possible to screen for the gene that predisposes a cat to this disease. Consequently, cats in which the gene is identified should be removed from breeding programs.

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5. Tuxies Are Said to Be More Intelligent Than Other Cats

It is rumored that tuxedo cats hit developmental milestones earlier than other cats. They may also develop faster than other kittens, both physically and mentally.

Tuxedo ragdoll cat sitting inside the house
Image Credit: Liao Zhiwo Henry, Shutterstock
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6. Purebred Ragdoll Kittens Are Born Pure White

A purebred Ragdoll kitten will be born pure white. At around two months of age, the coat will start to show some color. Their final adult color will only be visible when they are about two years old.

cat paw divider Does a Tuxedo Ragdoll Cat Make a Good Pet?

Tuxedo Ragdolls, or Ragdolls of any color for that matter, make the most wonderful pets. There doesn’t seem to be a mean bone in this cat’s body. They simply ooze graciousness and amiability.

They are renowned for being one of the most laid-back cat breeds and are tolerant of most environments and situations. Ragdolls are gentle and loyal, yet still playful and stealthily mischievous. They are so gentle that they often don’t even extend their claws when playing, even though they play hard. This makes them a great choice for homes with small children.

They are just as fond of other fur members in the family as they are of their humans. It’s impossible to find any real faults with these delightful puss cats. As a bonus, they are generally longer-lived than most other breeds, so you’re likely to enjoy your tuxedo Ragdoll for a good, long time.



The tuxedo Ragdoll cat may not be officially recognized by any of the feline registration authorities, but we think this is unimportant. The allure of these large, loving felines lies in their agreeable personalities and smart good looks, not their pedigree.

Both tuxedos and Ragdolls are said to be smarter than the average cat. Combined as a package, tuxedo Ragdolls may well possess an intellect that could rival Einstein’s!

If you’re fortunate enough to own a tuxedo Ragdoll, we reckon you’ve hit the kitty jackpot!

See also:

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Featured Image Credit: Liao Zhiwo Henry, Shutterstock