The Ragdoll is a medium longhaired breed. It is best known for its docile and placid temperament. They are non-aggressive to the point that many cats cannot or should not be let outside for prolonged periods as many will not defend themselves and most do not hunt. The name "Ragdoll" derived from the fact that many of these cats go completely limp and relax when picked up. Ragdolls have a sturdy body, short legs, and a thick coat with Siamese-style points.
Ragdolls were first bred in the 1960’s by Ann Baker, a Persian breeder in California, some of whose original stock consisted of sturdy, free-roaming cats. It is thought she created the foundations of the Ragdoll breed by selecting kittens out of Josephine, a semi-feral longhaired white female Persian/Angora type, sired by several unknown male Birman-like or Burmese-like cats, one with Siamese type markings. Out of those early litters came Blackie, an all black Burmese-like male and Daddy Warbucks, a seal point with white feet. Daddy Warbucks sired the founding bicolor female Fugianna, and Blackie sired Buckwheat, a dark brown/black Burmese-like female. Both Fugianna and Buckwheat were daughters of Josephine. All Ragdoll cats are descended from Ann Bakers cats through matings of Daddy Warbucks to Fugianna and Buckwheat.
By selecting individuals with the look and temperament she wanted for her breeding program, Ann Baker created the standard Ragdoll type. Denny and Laura Dayton are credited with bringing the Ragdoll breed to worldwide recognition by various cat registration organizations. What is known is that this breed was selectively bred over many years for desirable traits, such as large size, gentle demeanor, and a tendency to go limp when picked up.