It’s a well-known fact that Norwegian Forest Cats are one of the largest domestic cat breeds in the world, averaging between 8 to 20 lbs. Males top out on the higher end, averaging between 10 to 20 pounds, while females are closer to 8-18 pounds.
Size Comparison to a Normal Cat
To help put that into perspective, the average domestic house cat weights between 8 to 10 lbs, making them the same size as the smallest Norwegian Forest Cat! And that makes them only half the weight of a Norwegian Forest Cat on the upper end of the weight scale.
Indeed, the Norwegian Forest Cat is much, much bigger than a normal cat, so be ready with more kitty food and kitty litter!
Size Comparison to Other Cat Breeds
It might come as a surprise that there are a few other breeds that are very close in average size to the Norwegian Forest Cat. Ragdoll cats are one of the closest, averaging between 8 to 20 lbs, almost the exact same weight as the Norwegian Forest Cat.
Even though the average weight of the Maine Coon is slightly lower than the Norwegian Forest Cat, they seem to have larger variation in size which explains why the largest cat in the world is a Maine Coon. Norwegian Forest Cats tend to have less variation in size, so you can better predict exactly how large your Wegie kitten will be.
Why Are Norwegian Forest Cats So Big?
Many cat breeds are selectively bred for certain physical characteristics that define their breed. For example, the Sphynx cat is completely hairless, the Ragdoll has a plush, silky coat and the Bengal Cat has the markings of a leopard. But Norwegian Forest Cats were not originally bred for their size; they simply came that way.
While we can’t be completely certain why some cat breeds are larger than others, we do notice that breeds from colder, northern climates tend to be bigger and have longer hair. Originally from Scandinavia, the Norwegian Forest Cat had to survive frigid winters, and their bigger body mass might have helped to keep them warm.
Some of their large appearance can also be attributed to their long coat, making them look even larger than they actually are.
Norwegian Forest Cats are Sweet Natured
Despite their large size, Norwegian Forest Cats are incredibly sweet, affectionate cats. At first glance they might seem intimidating and fierce, the remnants of a wild feline that used to roam the frigid forests of Scandinavia, but that first impression couldn’t be further from the truth. Nicknamed the “Wegie” (short for “Norwegian”), the Norwegian Forest Cat is one of the most lovable, friendly cats you’ll encounter, which is just one of the many reasons they’re so popular.