Spectacular Cat Breeds Beginning with S
The world of cat breeds holds so many spectacular varieties starting with the letter S. From sleek hairless Sphynxes to fluffy Siberians and playful Savannahs, S-name breeds showcase great diversity in appearance and personality. Let’s dive into the details of over a dozen of the top cat breeds that start with S to appreciate their unique qualities.
Native to the deserts of North Africa and the Middle East, the Sand Cat is a rare and elusive small wild cat species. With its pale gold coat and faint tabby stripes, the Sand Cat’s coloring provides ideal camouflage against the desert environment. This cat has a stocky build with wide-set eyes and ears to enhance hunting.
Remarkably, Sand Cats thrive in both hot deserts and cold winters but require sandy or stony desert areas for hunting and shelter. They are a solitary species that hunts small rodents at night. While not a domesticated pet breed, the Sand Cat does breed well in captivity and can even be hand-raised when acquired from a reputable source.
- Lifespan: Around 12 years in captivity
- Personality: Solitary hunter, active at dusk/night. Can be tamed but not domesticated.
- Coat: Pale gold fur with faint tabby stripes, blends into desert environment
- Size: Small, around 3-4 lbs fully grown. Stocky, compact build.
Though challenging, Sand Cats can make fascinating pets for experienced owners able to accommodate their extensive space and enrichment needs. Their captivating golden coat and nocturnal nature give them mystique.
The Sand Cat’s paws are furred between the toes to help them navigate hot sand and prevent burning.
With its exotic spotted coat and tall muscular build, the Savannah definitely makes a bold impression. This breed was first created by crossing an African Serval with a domestic cat, creating a striking hybrid cat. Savannahs come in colors ranging from silver and black to burnt orange and brown. Their bodies are long with very tall ears.
Savannahs have larger-than-life personalities to match their wild appearance. They are exceptionally intelligent, curious, and active cats. Savannahs need lots of interaction and stimulation through play, training, and even walking on leashes. They thrive when challenged. Savannahs are also known to be social and bond deeply with their families.
- Lifespan: 12-20 years
- Personality: Very intelligent, curious, and active. Needs interaction and environmental enrichment. Bonds closely with family.
- Coat: Spotted or rosetted pattern in silver, black, brown, or burnt orange. Short to medium length.
- Size: Large to giant, with males reaching 25+ lbs. Very tall and long-legged.
This high-energy breed needs ample space to run and play. Puzzle toys, cat trees, and leash walks are ideal for their needs. For the right owner ready to provide proper stimulation, the Savannah makes a playful, devoted companion.
Savannahs hold the record for tallest domestic cat breed and largest recorded domestic cat, weighing over 40 lbs!
With their adorably folded ears, round eyes, and plush coats, Scottish Folds have captured hearts around the world. Originating from a barn cat in Scotland, Scottish Folds get their signature trait from a natural genetic mutation that causes the ear cartilage to gradually fold forward and down. The breed comes in long and short-haired varieties and all coat colors/patterns.
Despite their cute looks, Scottish Folds have a robust build and personality. They are intelligent, loving family companions that enjoy human interaction and playtime. The breed is easygoing and gets along well with children and other pets when properly socialized. For families seeking an affectionate, laidback cat, the Scottish Fold is an excellent choice.
- Lifespan: 11-15 years
- Personality: Easygoing, calm, loving, enjoys human interaction
- Coat: Long or short-haired, all coat colors and patterns
- Size: Medium-sized, 6-13 lbs. Sturdy, rounded body type.
Owners should be aware of potential joint issues associated with the fold ear gene. Overall though, the friendly Scottish Fold makes a perfect cuddly companion when bred responsibly.
Scottish Fold kittens are born with straight ears – the ears begin folding around 3-4 weeks old as their cartilage deforms.
Much like its cousin the LaPerm, the Selkirk Rex is another breed defined by an adorable curly coat. Originating from a shelter cat named Miss DePesto, this breed’s defining trait is its soft, loose curls. Selkirk Rex fur feels similar to a plush lamb’s wool and comes in long and short-haired varieties.
These curly-coated cats have loving personalities to match their fluffy exterior. Selkirk Rexes are relaxed, patient, and thrive when they can interact with their families. Despite their cuddly looks, they remain lively and playful into adulthood. For those wanting a playmate with a hypoallergenic coat, the Selkirk Rex is a perfect choice.
- Lifespan: 12-16 years
- Personality: Patient, relaxed, playful, loves interacting with family
- Coat: Short or long curly coat, sheds little. All coat colors/patterns.
- Size: Medium-large, 10-15 lbs. Heavy-boned rectangular body.
Thanks to their wash-and-wear coat, Selkirk Rexes require minimal grooming beyond weekly brushing. Their affectionate nature and family-friendly personality have helped the breed gain popularity worldwide.
Unlike other rex breeds, the Selkirk Rex’s unique curls are caused by a dominant gene mutation.
With its long legs, large ears, and exotic spotted coat, the Serengeti certainly earns its nickname – the “long-legged African cat.” Native to the Serengeti region of Africa, wild Servals were first crossed with domestic Bengal cats to create this breed in the 1990s. These cats resemble Ocicats or Bengals but have longer limbs and smaller spots.
Energetic and athletic, Serengetis thrive when provided lots of interactive play and environmental enrichment. They are exceptionally intelligent and can even be leash trained or taught to play fetch. Despite their high activity level, Serengetis bond closely with their families and enjoy snuggling when playtime is over.
- Lifespan: 12-15 years
- Personality: Energetic, athletic, extremely intelligent. Needs interactive play and stimulation.
- Coat: Spotted coat pattern, short to medium length. Silver, brown, or gold spots.
- Size: Medium to large. Long-legged and athletic build.
With their high energy and needs for stimulation, Serengetis are best suited for active households. But for the right owner, they make attentive and entertaining companions.
Early generation Serengetis can grow even taller and leggier than later generations, as they are closer genetically to the long-limbed Serval.
With its fluffy coat and adorable turned-down ears, the Pixie-Bob’s cousin – the Serrade Petit – is undeniably cute. But don’t let their plush exterior fool you – this is an intelligent, active breed. The Serrade Petit is believed to have originated in France, with ties to naturally occurring Pixie-Bob ancestors. Their coats come in both short and long-haired varieties and patterns of solid, tabby, and spotted.
Despite their cuddly looks, Serrade Petits are energetic cats that benefit from lots of play and environmental enrichment. Food puzzles, cat trees, and interactive toys are a must. They are also quite vocal and communicate their needs readily. Once playtime is over, Serrade Petits enjoy snuggling with their families.
- Lifespan: 12-15 years
- Personality: Active, playful, intelligent. Vocal and communicates needs clearly.
- Coat: Shorthaired or longhaired, tabby, spotted or solid patterns.
- Size: Medium-large, 10-18 lbs. Muscular body with turned-down ears.
For those seeking an active breed with some wild looks, the Serrade Petit makes a devoted yet entertaining companion when provided proper stimulation.
With their friendly personality and outgoing nature, Serrade Petits often make successful therapy cats.
With its rich history and signature point coat colors, the Siamese is one of the world’s most recognized breeds. Originating centuries ago as prized cats of Thai royalty, Siamese today retain their aristocratic yet vocal personality. They have a long, sleek, elegant build with large triangular ears. The pointed coat color – seal, chocolate, blue, or lilac-colored – remains their trademark look.
Siamese are extremely intelligent, social cats that thrive on human interaction. They form very strong bonds with their families and prefer not to be left alone for long periods. Siamese are highly communicative and vocal to convey their needs or opinions. This is an energetic breed that enjoys daily activity and play.
- Lifespan: 11-15 years
- Personality: Very intelligent and communicative. Affectionate, social, demands interaction. Talkative and opinionated.
- Coat: Short sleek coat in seal, chocolate, blue, or lilac pointed patterns.
- Size: Medium, 8-12 lbs. Long, sleek, elegant build.
With proper attention and care, a Siamese can make a wonderfully engaging and loyal companion for years to come.
Siamese cats were first exported from Thailand in the late 19th century, with seal point Siamese gaining popularity as pets of royalty across Europe.
Hailing from Russia, the Siberian was born to survive harsh northern winters. This breed has a long, thick triple coat ideal for cold climates and the outdoors. They come in all colors and patterns – from solid white to grey tabby to calico. Siberians have a stocky, barrel-chested build with large round eyes and ears.
Beneath their cold-weather exterior, Siberians have a sweet, loyal personality. They often maintain kitten-like qualities of playfulness and curiosity into adulthood. Siberians bond closely with their families while also remaining polite and gentle around strangers. This is an exceptionally friendly yet lively breed.
- Lifespan: 11-15 years
- Personality: Playful, curious, friendly with strangers, bonds closely with family
- Coat: Long triple coat, all colors/patterns. Thick and water-resistant.
- Size: Medium-large, with males reaching 20 lbs. Barrel-chested, stocky build.
Siberian grooming needs are moderate thanks to their thick coat. But their affectionate personalities make the effort worthwhile for those seeking a sturdy yet sweet companion.
It’s hypothesized that Siberians may have contributed to the ancestry of modern longhaired breeds like the Norwegian Forest Cat and Maine Coon Cat.
Though one of the world’s smallest breeds, the Singapura definitely has a big personality. Named after the Malay word for Singapore, this breed originated from the streets of Singapore and was imported to the USA in the 1970s. They are recognized by their large eyes and ears paired with a short sepia-toned coat.
Despite their petite size, Singapuras are energetic, highly intelligent cats. They love climbing, perching up high, and showing off their agility. Singapuras bond deeply with their families but may only attach to one or two preferred people. This breed needs interactive play and stimulation. With proper attention, they make remarkably devoted companions.
- Lifespan: 9-15 years
- Personality: Energetic, highly intelligent, bonds deeply with family, thrives on interaction
- Coat: Short coat in sepia brown tones only. Minimal shedding.
- Size: Very small, just 4-8 lbs. Dainty yet muscular build.
While demanding of attention, the Singapura rewards its family with endless affection and liveliness. Their petite size yet big personality make them one of a kind.
The Singapura is known as one of the smallest breeds but has a surprisingly long lifespan of 15-20 years.
Earning its name from its white “boots”, the Snowshoe is a striking breed with Siamese-inspired points and sapphire blue eyes. Snowshoes were first produced in the 1960s by crossing Siamese with bicolor American Shorthairs. Today they come in seal, chocolate, or lilac-pointed patterns over white. Their medium-length coat is exceptionally soft and silky.
Snowshoes share the Siamese love of communicating vocally with their people. They are active, social cats that thrive when they can engage with their families. Snowshoes are exceptionally people-oriented and dislike being left alone for long periods. Providing this breed with proper attention leads to a loving, entertaining companion.
- Lifespan: 12-16 years
- Personality: Vocal, social, active. Demands interaction and company. Forms close bonds with family. Intelligent and curious.
- Coat: Medium length, extremely soft and silky. Pointed coat colors over white areas.
- Size: Medium-sized, 8-12 lbs. Muscular foreign body type.
For those seeking an affectionate yet striking breed, the Snowshoe’s unique looks and personality make them a top choice.
Snowshoes were nearly extinct in the 1970s until Siamese breeders revived the breed by crossing Siamese and bi-colored American Shorthairs.
A more recently established breed, the Sokoke hails from the Sokoke Forest of Kenya. They were bred from local landrace cats which resulted in their distinctive ticked, shorthaired coat. Sokokes have an elegant yet muscular foreign build. Their heads are rounded with large upright ears. Coat colors range from brown tabby to grey to auburn.
Sokokes are highly intelligent and active cats. They love heights and enjoy exploring their environments. Puzzles and interactive play are a must to keep this breed engaged. Sokokes form strong bonds and communicate readily with their people. Though cautious initially, they also get along well with children and other pets when properly introduced.
- Lifespan: 10-15 years
- Personality: Intelligent, communicative, cautious initially but bonds strongly. Needs play and interactive enrichment.
- Coat: Short, dense ticked coat. Colors include brown tabby, grey, and red.
- Size: Medium to large, 8-13 lbs. Muscular foreign build.
The Sokoke remains a rare breed but makes a wonderful companion for those able to provide proper stimulation and company. Their devoted yet intelligent nature makes them a joy.
The Sokoke breed was named after the Arabuko Sokoke National Park in Kenya, where the foundation cats lived and hunted.
With its long, silky coat and fox-like face, the Somali is essentially a long-haired version of the Abyssinian. In fact, Somalis originated from Abyssinian and long-haired breed crosses. They come in the same ruddy, red, fawn, and silver ticked coat colors as Abyssinians. The medium-long coat requires weekly brushing to minimize tangles and matting.
Energetic and playful, Somalis thrive when they can climb, explore, and play interactive games. Despite their high activity level, Somalis adore snuggling with their families too. This is an intelligent, communicative breed that demands regular company and interaction with their preferred people.
- Lifespan: 12-16 years
- Personality: Playful, energetic, extremely bonded with family. Demands attention and interaction.
- Coat: Medium-long ticked coat in red, ruddy, fawn, silver. Requires weekly brushing.
- Size: Medium-sized, 6-10 lbs. Graceful yet muscular foreign build.
For those desiring a lively, affectionate breed that resembles a fox, the Somali is a perfect match. Their devotion and soft coat make up for their high grooming needs.
In the show ring, Somali cats compete in the Longhair division due to their medium-long coats, despite being short-haired by genetics.
With its large ears, wrinkled skin, and alien-like appearance, the Sphynx certainly stands out from other breeds! Hairless cats have existed for centuries, but the modern Sphynx cat was developed through selective breeding starting in the 1960s. Despite their bare appearance, Sphynxes have a suede-like short coat over much of their body.
Beneath their otherworldly exterior, Sphynx cats have charming, lively personalities. They thrive on attention and touch due to their hairless skin. Sphynxes love cuddling under blankets and playing with their families. This is an extremely affectionate breed. Without fur to keep them warm, they appreciate soft bedding and climate control.
- Lifespan: 8-14 years
- Personality: Extremely affectionate, craves attention. Outgoing, silly, loves to play.
- Coat: Short fine down on body, suede-like to the touch. Soft, rubbery wrinkles.
- Size: Medium, 6-10 lbs. Sturdy, thick-boned build.
While their unique look may not be for everyone, Sphynx cat owners are rewarded with endless affection from these charming oddballs of the cat world.
Despite their hairless appearance, Sphynx cats are not actually hypoallergenic as their skin produces more oils than other breeds.
From the hairless Sphynx to the fluffy Siberian, S-name cat breeds showcase incredible diversity in personalities and appearances. But across the board, these S cats form deep bonds and thrive when cared for properly. Any of these special breeds can make a devoted, entertaining companion for life.