Cats with big ears are often highly intelligent and can make for some of the largest domestic cats that are around today. That doesn’t mean that all big cats have big ears, though, so we’d like to introduce you to 9 of our favorite cat breeds that just happen to have oversized ears. Not all big-eared cat breeds are mentioned here, but this is a great introduction to the world of cat breeds with big ears.
Big-eared Cat Breeds
There are over 20 common cat breeds where big ears are one of their main features. It’s important to remember that not all cats with big ears will belong to one of the breeds that we discuss in this article and that it’s possible – but rare – for a cat from one of these breeds to be born with smaller ears.
The Abyssinian is a domestic cat breed that is high-energy and extremely loving. Their small face makes their oversized ears look extremely cute, and they have a fairly slimline appearance due to the shape of their face and body. Abyssinian cats have almond-shaped eyes, which are often golden in color, and match their distinctive ticked tabby coat.
A ticked tabby coat is one of the five standard tabby coat types. Abyssinians highlight this coat by showing off flecks of black or dark brown fur throughout their golden-brown body. The darker fur is more prominent on their back and tail.
These domestic cats are a playful cat breed, always ready for an adventure. They’re also known for their intelligence, love of climbing, and friendliness towards their family members.
Balinese cats began their life as a mutation of the standard Siamese cat breed. Even today, they still look extremely similar to Siamese kitties, to the point where the average cat owner may not be aware of the distinct differences between the two breeds. You could consider the Balinese breed to be a branch off of the Siamese cat tree.
Balinese cats have longer coats than the regular Siamese cat breed does, and they’re also slightly smaller in size. A Balinese rarely ever weighs more than 5kg, while a Siamese cat weighs anywhere from 4.5 to 5.5kg on average. When you look at a Balinese and a Siamese side-by-side, the first thing you’ll notice is that Balinese cats are much fluffier due to their longer coat. Balinese cats are often mistaken as Siamese, but they are their own breed now.
They often have bright blue eyes, and light fur with dark points around the face, ears, and paws. They have large ears, are playful, and can be very vocal domestic cats to have at home. They are highly intelligent cats, and part of their intelligence is being vocal when they want something. As such, they make ideal family pets because they’ll always tell you when they want their next bowl of pet food.
You can always tell when there’s a bit of a wild animal in the DNA of a domestic cat. The Chausie cat is a hybrid bred from wild and domestic cats, and is sometimes referred to as the “miniature cougar cat” because of its appearance. Their appearance is very unique, highlighting their tall, enormous ears, which are turned outwards on the top of their head. Their large, pointed ears are attractive to pet lovers, who find them endearing and enjoy the wild cat look that the Chausie gets from them.
Because of their wild appearance, many expect these active cats to be too much to handle in a home setting, but they’re actually incredibly affectionate. These are playful cats that want nothing more than to play hunting games with you, get lots of attention, and be praised for their tabby cat looks.
The Cornish Rex is an interesting breed because they’re almost mouse or rat-like in appearance. They have huge ears; ears that are almost the size of their head! A slim body, and a very thin tail. They’re hairless cats for the most part, with just a fine amount of downy fur to cover their skin. This fur is so fine that it can give them a curly or wavy coat.
These kitties have an interesting, almost rolling, run. It’s often compared to the run of a Greyhound dog. These comparisons are further continued because the Cornish Rex is a very playful breed that loves adventure and explores whatever nook or cranny they can get into!
It should be noted that this cat breed doesn’t have pointy ears like many of the other big cat ears we’ll talk about in this guide. Their ears have a rounded tip, which is why we’ve compared them to a mouse or rat. If you were to look at the head of a Cornish Rex, they really do seem like a cute, oversized rodent with very unique patterns on their coat.
The Devon Rex and the Cornish Rex are two separate cat breeds, despite their similar names. Their names are one of the only things about the two breeds that could be compared because the Devon Rex cat couldn’t be more different to the Cornish Rex!
Devon Rex cats come from England and are recognized for their faerie or pixie-like appearance. Most cat breeds don’t have the ear shape that the Devon Rex cats do – it’s so interesting because there’s very little space between the two ears, which almost makes them look joined at the top of the cat’s head. Cat breeds with big ears often have very individual looks, but the Devon Rex is a cat whose large ears are shaped so strangely that they’ve almost become one ear.
Their pointed, flared ears sit atop a small head, just above oval-shaped eyes that make you feel like you’re looking at a cat not quite from our world. No wonder this breed is known as the “pixie cat” when they have such an otherworldly appearance.
It should be known – for any homeowner considering this intelligent cat breed – that they are jumping cats. They will climb and jump up or off of anything they can. This further adds to the idea that they aren’t a man-bred cat, for sure, but seriously… Watch your head if you’re walking past any of their favorite places to perch. Keep this cat happy by providing them with plenty of stimulation such as interactive toys and cat trees.
Egyptian Mau cats are one of the most recognizable breeds in the cat world, even for people who have never owned a cat. They’re considered an “exotic” breed and their pricetag shows them as such. Though the Egyptian Mau’s ears aren’t as big as some of the large ears on other cat breeds here, they’re still considered big. This breed has a small face, which makes their ears seem too big for their head.
The uncommon spotted pattern across the Egyptian Mau’s fur is one of the many reasons that this breed is popular. They’re medium-sized, muscular cats, and they often use their strength to get into a bit of mischief. With enough practice, your cunning Egyptian Mau may even start turning on your water faucet without you knowing, and they do so love to play with water.
These cats make great family pets, with some almost dog-like personality traits. We wouldn’t recommend adopting an Egyptian Mau unless you have ample garden space for them to run around in, and perhaps other pets that they can play with if you aren’t going to be at home all day to stimulate them. Although they are extremely active, your Egyptian Mau will also be ready and waiting to cuddle up to you after a tiring day.
Javanese cats are a bit of a mix of genetics. They’re a cross between Siamese, Balinese, and various Colorpoint cat breeds because the individuals that bred the breed into existence wanted specific traits for their Javanese cats. What we ended up with, as a result, is a blue-eyed cat with a delicate appearance, but one that is deceptively strong.
This is another breed with dog-like traits. Javanese cats cat be taught to play fetch, enjoy walking on leads, and have a similar personality to a loving canine. They’ll happily follow you around your home or come and say hello while you’re relaxing on the couch. Javanese cats are particularly intelligent, which isn’t surprising when you look at their genetic background. If your cat is watching you, they’re likely learning your habits or overseeing you – like a babysitter or supervisor, you decide which.
The Javanese cat can be found in very rare coat colors, which are likely a genetic mutation from the crossbreeding that the breed went through to get where they are today. For example, alongside the standard red and cream that are uncommon but still found in many cat breeds, you can also find Javanese cats in chocolate brown, blue, lilac, blue-cream, and lilac-cream.
We’re sure you won’t be surprised to hear that this cat breed can be expensive to buy. Their average price is between $1000 and $2000. They’re a rare breed without taking into consideration their even rarer colorations.
At first glance, what many see is a spotted tabby cat that is on the larger side, by the Ocicat is so much more than that. Yes, they are a medium to large cat breed, but they have incredible resemblance to wild cats and beautiful, sleek coats. Actually, the Ocicat’s coat is made up of hairs which all contain more than one color. This gives the cat’s coat great depth and shine.
You may feel like you recognize traits of the Ocicat, and that’s because they are a crossbreed that was created by crossing the Siamese cat and Abyssinian cats. This cross was later bred with an American Domestic Shorthair cat, which gave us the Ocicat we have today. It’s likely that the addition of the American Domestic Shorthair helped reduce the cat’s overall size and made them just that touch friendlier.
The result is a breed full of loving cats, who fit right in to any human family that adopts one. These friendly cats form strong bonds with their humans, and are even happy to welcome strangers into their space. They’re very playful, thanks to their Siamese ancestors, and have a curious nature. However, they don’t like to be left alone, so they’re better fits for semi-busy households or homes with existing pets.
Similar in appearance and relation to the Oriental Shorthair breed, Oriental Longhair cats have a huge amount of silky fur wrapped around their entire body. They can be found in numerous colors, which makes them particularly sought-after because cat owners feel like they’re getting their favorite pattern or color of cat in a long-hair form.
There’s something almost lion-esque about the Oriental Longhair cat. They have a long, thin face, coupled with almond-shaped eyes, and large ears. This combination gives them a somewhat strange appearance, but they’re very beautiful, if a bit disconcerting to look at.
If you’re a dog person, you’re sure to enjoy the personality of the Oriental Longhair. They have no quarms about following you from room to room or begging for your attention. If their cat food bowl is empty, they’ll let you know, and they’ll look extremely regal while doing it.
Why do some cats have big ears?
A cat with big ears will almost always belong to a specific breed of cats that carries that trait. This trait comes from the wild cat ancestry that these domestic cats have, and some domestic cats are closer to their ancestry than others. A cat with large ears is able to hear extremely quiet sounds, which is useful when they’re hunting for their dinner out in the wild.
Is a big eared cat a good luck charm?
Not all of them, but we can tell you where you’ve heard that before! The Korat is a type of big-eared cat that is believed to be a good luck charm in Thailand. The cats are native to the country, and there they are called “Si-Sawat”, which literally means “good fortune”. They bond hard and fast with their owners, and are very intelligent creatures.