Stupid cats: Top 10 dumbest cat breeds in the world

There are many words you could use to describe the fluffy feline fellows who inhabit our homes, but few would call them stupid. And while we certainly don't want to be mean to any cat out there, some are definitely smarter than others. Here's a list of those who aren't exactly the sharpest tools in the shed!

Some cats are remarkably dumb, and we're here to expose them.
Some cats are remarkably dumb, and we're here to expose them.  © Unsplash/Hanmer Zh

Cats aren't the most intelligent animals on the planet, but they're definitely not dim.

Cats are extremely independent problem-solvers who get by on their smarts.

But not all breeds are created equal, and some are more on the, uh... dense side of the scale.

So are there kitties out there who can't be trained because they just lack the brainpower?

With apologies to our feline friends, TAG24's cat guide will take a look at the top 10 dumbest cat breeds in the world.

Why are some cats more or less intelligent than others, and what can you expect if you adopt a stupid cat?

Let's find out!

Why are some cat breeds dumber?

Certain cat breeds are perceived as being smarter and more intelligent than others mainly because they are more athletic, better hunters, and more independent. While their brains are not necessarily bigger, and don't necessarily have more capacity, certain cat breeds will often seem smarter.

The more capable kitties are generally breeds that need to be allowed outside, need to be given the opportunity to explore and hunt, and can get very naughty if kept inside. In the end, it comes down to experience and opportunity. If you have a kitty that stays inside all the time, doesn't get the opportunity to learn more complex skills, and sleeps all day, it will automatically seem more stupid.

In the end, dumber cat breeds are less intelligent because they don't get the ability to exercise their brains and learn new things. That doesn't mean that they can't, they just typically won't.

Top 10 dumbest cat breeds in the world

There are some remarkable cats out there in the world, no matter their intelligence. Having a kitty is about having a companion who will provide company, love, and responsibility. Indeed, some of the dumber cats out there are also some of the cutest cat breeds and have some of the sweetest personalities.

You've got to love a sweet kitty, no matter whether they are smart or stupid. Having said that, here are the top 10 dumbest cat breeds in the world.

Himalayan cats are hardly the smartest-looking kitties.
Himalayan cats are hardly the smartest-looking kitties.  © Unsplash/Dan Dennis

10. Himalayan cats

A variation of the Persian cat, the Himalayan is a beautiful short-snout kitty with a gorgeous coat, soft and fluffy hair, and an interesting (but divisive) history. Clearly related to the Persian, there is little-to-no information on where these gorgeous cats have originated from. Did they also come from the Middle-East, or was the variation bred elsewhere? There is only speculation.

What's also notable about the Himalayan cat is that it is widely considered to be one of the least intelligent cat breeds in the world. Not particularly trainable, and often incredibly stubborn, these are cats that will likely do very little except lie around and request a feed every now and again. They're cute and cuddly, though, so shouldn't be overlooked due to their lack of brain power.

9. Exotic shorthair

The exotic shorthair is a strange and rather dumb cat.
The exotic shorthair is a strange and rather dumb cat.  © Unsplash/Dan Wayman

There are few cats that look as dumb as the exotic shorthair, making it by far the least surprising of all kitties listed in this article. They're remarkably popular due to their love-ability (I mean, look at those big eyes!), but will do little more throughout their day except lick themselves silly, eat food, and search for local humans that are willing to give them attention.

You should not try to train your cat if it is an exotic shorthair, because it just simply won't work. These cats have very little brain power and are generally kept indoors, so also have very little opportunity to grow their smarts. With that in mind, while the exotic shorthair is an incredibly dumb cat, it's incredibly loving and affectionate too, and great around kids.

8. Persian cats

Persian cats are strange looking kitties that don't boast the highest level of intelligence.
Persian cats are strange looking kitties that don't boast the highest level of intelligence.  © Unsplash/Sergey Semin

Originating from Persia, in modern day Iran and Afghanistan, the Persian cat is known for its grumpy-as-heck expression, its love of other pets, its laziness, and the fluff that it inevitably leaves everywhere. This is a cat worth checking out, even if purely to gaze at its hilarious and incredibly adorable face – but not one to expect much out of in terms of intelligence.

The Persian cat is one of the dumbest cats in the entire world, largely because it has been a staple of privilege and riches for far too long. First documented in Khorasan, these cats have been owned by nobility across Asia and Europe, have largely been kept inside and, as a result, have about the brain capacity of teaspoon.

7. British shorthair

British shorthairs are some of the cutest and sweetest cats in the world.
British shorthairs are some of the cutest and sweetest cats in the world.  © Unsplash/Ani Adigyozalyan

A historically significant breed, likely brought to the modern day UK during the days of the Roman Empire, the British shorthair has become a mainstay domestic cat. Independent and incredibly sweet, these fluffy little creatures don't need you to give them a ton of attention – a trait not so common in stupid cats – but don't mistake that independence for smarts.

The British shorthair is one of the laziest animals to have ever existed and, as a result of their obsession with sleep, they have become incredibly dumb. While they are not the smartest kitties out there, their independence and calm attitude make them the ideal choice for a family that's looking to adopt - especially a family with kids!

6. American shorthair

American shorthairs come super fluffy, and they're not the sharpest cookies either.
American shorthairs come super fluffy, and they're not the sharpest cookies either.  © Unsplash/Chalaphan Mathong

It's time to get a little bit more American. These cats are not the smartest, but they're also not the dumbest out there. Instead, they are creatures of habit that will be easily clicker trained but not-so-easily kept calm. In general, American shorthairs are sweet and loving, but at times their lack of brain power can also cause a great deal of fear and a general lack of situational awareness.

Yes, the American shorthair is pretty dumb, but it'll consistently show you love and stick by your side. Just be prepared to provide support and care when it gets agitated. Keep the environment quiet and calm, provide plenty of love and attention, and make sure that it has toys to play with when you're gone.

5. Birman

Birmans deserve more love, even if they're not the smartest kitties.
Birmans deserve more love, even if they're not the smartest kitties.  © Unsplash/Bastian Pudill

Cute, delicate, and loving, Birmans don't get nearly the love that they deserve. These gorgeous little fur balls are full of personality and are ridiculously endearing, especially when they are confused and want your support.

Birmans don't generally get aggressive – they just get inquisitive, and start meowing at you like their life depends on it.

You can't really train Birmans, and that's okay, because they are not the type to act up or start behaving badly. Instead, these fluffy little fellows will be more likely to chill on the couch beside you and have a nice nap. This lack of drive and motivation, however, makes the Birman also one of the dumbest cat breeds out there.

4. Munchkin

Munchkin cats are tiny little creatures with equally small brains.
Munchkin cats are tiny little creatures with equally small brains.  © Unsplash/Tran Mau Tri Tam

Munchkin cats are incredibly unique and misunderstood creatures, that deserve much more praise and affection than they generally get. That's not to say that they don't get appreciated for their looks - these are some of the cutest cats in the world - but instead, they don't get appreciated for their ability to provide stable and loving emotional support.

The reality is that Munchkin is profoundly unintelligent, and won't do much of anything unless pushed. Instead, humans need to motivate their Munchkin to get out and see the world, to explore, and to learn new skills. In return, your beautiful Munchkin will stick by your side through thick and thin.

3. Snowshoe

Is there anything cuter than a snowshoe kitten?
Is there anything cuter than a snowshoe kitten?  © IMAGO/Design Pics

Snowshoes are not extremely stupid, but they become dumber due to their incredibly stubborn temperament and the fact that they are unwilling to learn. A breed that originates in the US, Snowshoes are a variation of the Siamese that all have completely white feet (hence their name) and were bred from a single litter in the 1960s.

Not a particularly common cat breed, the Snowshoe cat has become popular and greatly desired due to their unique look. Some of the cutest and sweetest cats in the world, these little fellows are characterized by their white feet, soft fur, and eyes often framed by different colored hair.

2. Scottish fold

The Scottish fold is famous for having folded-over ears.
The Scottish fold is famous for having folded-over ears.  © Unsplash/Đồng Phục Hải Triều

A medium-sized cat famous for its owl-like appearance and folded over ears, the Scottish fold is more than just a grumpy feline. Originating from a white barn cat called Susie in 1961, the Scottish fold has since become a very popular but also incredibly rare breed that deserves a lot more respect, recognition and love than it has been given over the years.

While hardly the sharpest tool in the shed, the Scottish fold is a soft-spoken and friendly cat breed that's perfect for families. Keep in mind, though, that low intelligence is the least of your troubles with such a cat. These gorgeous feline friends have a variety of genetic issues, and have serious deformities in their limbs and tail. As a result, they were refused registration in Europe in 1971.

1. Ragdoll

Ragdolls are incredibly naughty and significantly unintelligent.
Ragdolls are incredibly naughty and significantly unintelligent.  © Unsplash/Kanashi

Famous for being the naughtiest of all cat breeds, the ragdoll is an absolute wonder. Incredibly beautiful, with bright and piercing eyes framed by a darker patch of fur on their face, these are some cats to look out for. Usually kept as an indoor cat breed, the ragdoll is pretty dumb, but that's kind-of our fault.

You see, the ragdoll has been bred to stay inside, making it a breed that has rarely had the opportunity to explore or develop hunting skills. As such, these fluffy and friendly cats might be restless, but have very little mental capacity to deal with that restlessness (hence the naughtiness). Despite their difficulties, though, ragdolls are truly worth the trouble.

Are orange cats dumber than the rest?

The myth that orange cats are stupider than all other cat breeds is exactly that, just a myth. Indeed, orange cats are no dumber or smarter than any other cat breeds – they are the very definition of "average". Some will be smart, some will be a few pennies short of a pound, and some will sit somewhere in the middle.

It depends, of course, on the breed (orange cats are not a breed in themselves), the experiences the cat has had, whether it has the opportunity to explore and hunt, and all the other factors that play into cat intelligence.

The 10 cat breeds we have listed here are hardly the smartest cookies in the tin, but they shouldn't be underestimated. Even the dumbest cat is loving, affectionate, and will make a wonderful addition to your family.

Cover photo: Unsplash/Hanmer Zh

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