11 Black Cat Breeds That Are Anything But Spooky (2024)

Cats

Cat Breeds

Black cats bring their unique charm in all shapes, sizes, and fur lengths.

By

Janelle Leeson

11 Black Cat Breeds That Are Anything But Spooky (1)

Janelle Leeson

Janelle doesn’t just write about pets, she dedicates her spare time to the local shelters, is the go-to Portland cat-sitter, and hopes you say hi if you bump into Janelle and her adventure cats on the trail. In the rare moments that Janelle isn’t surrounded by cats or writing about them, you might find her wrangling her flock of urban chickens. You can follow Janelle, her adventure cats, adoptable fosters, and chickens at @paws_pdx.

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Published on 10/13/23

11 Black Cat Breeds That Are Anything But Spooky (2)

Black cat breeds are often associated with mystery and magic. Surprisingly to some, black cats are not a single breed, but rather many cat breeds that can have black coats of varying lengths. Despite their undeniable charm, the negative connotations that shroud our noir feline companions come from stories of witches and their familiars—animals who were said to be demons in disguise.

“And because we all know they're intelligent, cats were thought to have meetings of their own and decide what kind of magic to wield,” explains Martha Bayless, PhD, professor and director of folklore and public culture at the University of Oregon College of Arts and Sciences.

As time passed, cats transitioned from being associated with malevolent witches to beloved pets. Yet, because of their inky fur, these misjudged felines tend to be overlooked in shelters .

If you're looking to bring home a black cat, these 11 breeds may not be able to conjure magic, but they’re sure to spark joy.

Tip:

There's some evidence that black cat bias exists, meaning black cats are surrendered more often than cats of any other color, are adopted less often, and even euthanized more often than lighter-colored cats. If you're hoping to add a black cat to your household, there's a good chance a local shelter has one that fits your lifestyle. You may even find a purebred black cat.

  • 01 of 11

    Bombay

    11 Black Cat Breeds That Are Anything But Spooky (3)

    A perfect concoction of spunky and sweet, the Bombay breed is a mix between the black American shorthair and Burmese. Their fur only comes in black, and they always resemble little panthers with bright gold eyes, whereas other black cats may have yellow or green eyes. These cats have lots of energy and even more character. They're up for almost any activity, as long as their beloved human is there. Bombay cats are not a good fit for a home where they would be left alone all day.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 9 to 13 inches

    Weight: 8 to 15 pounds

    Personality/Temperament: Affectionate, sociable

    Energy Level: Active

    Coat Length: Short

    Coat Color: Black/ebony

    Life Span: 9 to 15 years

  • 02 of 11

    Maine Coon

    11 Black Cat Breeds That Are Anything But Spooky (4)

    Often referred to as the gentle giants of cats, Maine coons are the largest domestic cat breed, setting records of almost 4 feet in body length with giant whiskers, paws, and facial features to boot. They form strong bonds with their pet parents, says Alejandro Caos, DVM, a veterinarian with The Vets. And despite their size, they love to cuddle and be held—that is if they haven't outgrown your embrace! You can find solid black Maine coons as well as cream, red, blue, tabby, bi-color, and more.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 10 to 16 inches

    Weight: 8 to 18 pounds

    Personality/Temperament: Affectionate, sociable

    Energy Level: Active

    Coat Length: Long

    Coat Color: Black/ebony, blue/gray, chocolate/brown/sable, cream/beige/ tan, red/orange, white

    Life Span: 10 to 13 years

  • 03 of 11

    Oriental Shorthair

    11 Black Cat Breeds That Are Anything But Spooky (5)

    You won’t find this spunky feline hiding in the shadows. These noir cuties originate from England and have social personalities that go, go, go. Between games of fetch, the Oriental shorthair tends to enjoy cuddling up or simply following their humans from room to room. Like many Siamese-related breeds, Oriental shorthair cats are known for their chatty nature. Unlike their relatives, these cats have an unusual vocalization that sounds more like a honk than a meow. Their short, sleek fur is easy to care for. In addition to black, you’ll find them in stunning lavender, cinnamon, orange, and almost every pattern, too.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 9 to 11 inches

    Weight: 8 to 12 pounds

    Personality/Temperament: Affectionate, sociable

    Energy Level: Active

    Coat Length: Short

    Coat Color: Black/ebony, blue/gray, chocolate/brown/sable, cinnamon, cream/beige/tan, fawn, lavender/silver, lilac, red/orange, white

    Life Span: 12 to 15 years

  • 04 of 11

    American Shorthair

    11 Black Cat Breeds That Are Anything But Spooky (6)

    Originally kept as mousers aboard ships setting sail for the Americas, the easygoing and sweet-natured personalities of the American shorthair earned these felines a top spot as one of the best cats for families. As long as you provide plenty of toys, a scratching post, and, perhaps, a window perch to chirp at the birds, they’ll entertain themselves if you must leave for the day. They come in every color from inky black to chinchilla (white root with dark tips), pure white, blue, cream, and red.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 8 to 10 inches

    Weight: 10 to 15 pounds

    Personality/Temperament: Affectionate, bold, sociable

    Energy Level: Active

    Coat Length: Short

    Coat Color: Black/ebony, blue/gray, chocolate/brown/sable, cream/beige/tan, red/orange, white

    Life Span: 15 to 20 years

    Continue to 5 of 11 below

  • 05 of 11

    Persian

    11 Black Cat Breeds That Are Anything But Spooky (7)

    Persian cats are regal-looking, smoosh-faced felines that come in a variety of coat colors, including black. They're a showstopper, both literally and figuratively, as they were one of the original breeds at the very first cat show in 1871 . While Persians thrive in the spotlight—likely because they adore being doted on and swooned over—they're also gentle souls who prefer routine and quiet. This makes them better suited for households with older children rather than toddlers or babies.Persians require daily brushing and frequent baths to keep their hair from matting.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 10 to 15 inches

    Weight: 7 to 13 pounds

    Personality/Temperament: Affectionate, sociable

    Energy Level: Calm

    Coat Length: Long

    Coat Color: Black/ebony, blue/gray, chocolate/brown/sable, cinnamon, cream/beige/tan, fawn, lavender/silver, lilac, red/orange, white

    Life Span: 10 to 15 years

  • 06 of 11

    Sphynx

    The Sphynx charms humans with a nearly nude appearance and friendly demeanor. They have a thin layer of downy fur and their skin is pigmented, so they can come in a variety of coat colors and patterns, including black, tuxedo, and tortoiseshell. If you find their appearance bewitching—their looks aren't for everyone—you’re sure to love their affinity for curling up with someone warm, including other furry friends. They’re a good choice for those with allergies, but keep in mind that there’s no such thing as a truly hypoallergenic cat.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 8 to 10 inches

    Weight: 6 to 14 pounds

    Personality/Temperament: Affectionate, bold, sociable

    Energy Level: Hyper

    Coat Length: Hairless

    Coat Color: Black/ebony, blue/gray, chocolate/brown/sable, cinnamon, cream/beige/tan, fawn, lavender/silver, lilac, red/orange, white

    Life Span: 9 to 15 years

  • 07 of 11

    Manx

    11 Black Cat Breeds That Are Anything But Spooky (9)

    The Manx cat hails from Britain's Isle of Man, a small island in the Irish Sea. Known best by ancient sailors and farmers for their mousing skills, you might know them better by their tail—or a lack thereof. Their thick, double coats come in all black, but you can also find these sweet-tempered cats in virtually every color and pattern combination. Orange, tabby, and tortoiseshell are the most common. To keep loose hair at bay—and off the couch—brush them daily.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 7 to 11 inches

    Weight: 8 to 12 pounds

    Personality/Temperament: Affectionate

    Energy Level: Active

    Coat Length: Short

    Coat Color: Black/ebony, blue/gray, chocolate/brown/sable, cream/beige/tan, red/orange, white

    Life Span: 9 to 13 years

  • 08 of 11

    Japanese Bobtail

    11 Black Cat Breeds That Are Anything But Spooky (10)

    Another black cat sporting a short tail, the Japanese bobtail is energetic, playful, curious—and loves to be the center of attention. They’re low-shedding, easy to groom, and super intelligent. They’re native to Japan but lucky for cat lovers, they’ve materialized throughout the U.S. These medium-sized cats can flaunt long or short coats. In addition to black, they can be solid white, chocolate, blue, bi-color, calico, or, most commonly, white with colored spots.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 8 to 9 inches

    Weight: 6 to 10 pounds

    Personality/Temperament: Affectionate, friendly, sociable, and playful

    Energy Level: Hyper

    Coat Length: Short

    Coat Color: Black/ebony, blue/gray, chocolate/brown/sable, cream/beige/tan, lavender/silver, red/orange, white

    Life Span: 9 to 15 years

    Continue to 9 of 11 below

  • 09 of 11

    Exotic Shorthair

    11 Black Cat Breeds That Are Anything But Spooky (11)

    The exotic shorthair is referred to as the "Lazy Man's Persian,” and for good reason: They offer all of the docile quirks of the Persian without all the hair. In other words, they're fairly low-maintenance cats that only require weekly brushing. The short-haired cat might have an all-black coat, but they’re also found in other colors and patterns, too.Favorite pastimes of the exotic shorthair tend to be similar to that of the Persian: Being lavished in attention and otherwise doted on, gingerly batting at toy mice, and curling up with a beloved family member.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 10 to 12 inches

    Weight: 10 to 12 pounds

    Personality/Temperament: Affectionate, sociable

    Energy Level: Calm

    Coat Length: Short

    Coat Color: Black/ebony, blue/gray, chocolate/brown/sable, cinnamon, cream/beige/tan, fawn, lavender/silver, lilac, red/orange, white

    Life Span: 8 to 15 years

  • 10 of 11

    Siberian

    11 Black Cat Breeds That Are Anything But Spooky (12)

    There is no shortage of coat colors for the Siberian—including a luxurious black coat. No matter what color this large kitty comes in, they’ll have three thick coats of fur that were meant for the harsh winters of Siberia. Siberian cats are more than just their fur, however. They are also intelligent, affectionate, and exceptionally social with humans and other pets alike. To help this active kitty get all the daily exercise they need, consider a cat wheel or indulge in interactive play sessions.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 10 to 12 inches

    Weight: 12 to 15 pounds

    Personality/Temperament: Affectionate, bold, sociable

    Energy Level: Active

    Coat Length: Long

    Coat Color: Black/ebony, blue/gray, chocolate/brown/sable, cinnamon, cream/beige/tan, fawn, lavender/silver, lilac, red/orange, white

    Life Span: 8 to 10 years

  • 11 of 11

    Devon Rex

    11 Black Cat Breeds That Are Anything But Spooky (13)

    For a curly-coated black cat, look no further than the Devon rex (or one of the other handful of rex cat breeds). The Devon rex stands out, however, not just because they can sport a curly black coat, but for their unique alien-like looks and friendly personality. Their eye-catching fur doesn't need much maintenance, in fact, too much grooming could cause the delicate hairs to break.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 10 to 12 inches

    Weight: 6 to 9 pounds

    Personality/Temperament: Affectionate, bold, neurotic, sociable

    Energy Level: Hyper

    Coat Length: Short

    Coat Color: Black/ebony, blue/gray, chocolate/brown/sable, cinnamon, cream/beige/tan, fawn, lavender/silver, red/orange, white

    Life Span: 9 to 15 years

10 Cat Breeds With Black and White Coloring

The Spruce Pets uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.

  1. Carini RM, Sinski J, Weber JD. Coat color and cat outcomes in an urban u. S. Shelter.Animals (Basel). 2020;10(10):1720.

  2. Longest domestic cat living. Guinness World Records.

  3. The cat show of 1871 – El Segundo Animal Hospital.

11 Black Cat Breeds That Are Anything But Spooky (2024)
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