Your Cat Is Likely Bigger Than This 2-Pound Wild Breed, Which Conservationists Are Trying to Save from Extinction

The feline, known as the rusty spotted cat, is the smallest in the world.

world's smallest cat, prionailurus rubiginosus, out in the wild in sri lanka
Photo: jonnysek / Getty

Kittens are the tiniest (and arguably most adorable!) pets that any household can welcome as a member of the family. If you love these cute creatures, then you'll be amazed to know that there are adult cats that resemble them out in the wild—and that could be even smaller than those in your home. According to Mental Floss, rusty spotted cats are between two to four pounds and are the smallest breed in the world.

These felines look very similar to kittens based on their size, as they only grow to be about 20 inches long and eight inches tall from their head to their toes. The India- and Sri-Lanka-based wild animals roam moist forests and also sound like newborn cats, even when they are adults.

Rusty spotted cats also have extremely keen eyesight. Their eyes are six times sharper than that of humans, which allows them to scavenge for prey—mainly rodents. The felines' agile builds are also a perk, as this helps them climb trees when in search of more prey.

While these extraordinary cats are truly a gift to the world, they are actually going extinct. There are only about 10,000 of them left, plus, nearly 50 of the rusty spotted cats are in captivity. Even though their native lands continue to get smaller, conservationists note that they still have a good chance of surviving, as they are more adaptable than many previously thought. The cats can thrive in bamboo forests, wooded grasslands, dry scrublands, and on rocky hillsides.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles