Non shedding cat breeds unfortunately don't exist. But - before you click away from this page - there are a few breeds that shed much less hair than others.
And one of these just may make a great pet for you!
People normally want non shedding cat breeds for one or more of these reasons:
Let's look at each of these in turn, then look at the breeds that may be suitable in some or all of these circumstances:
I can really empathize with this one - I hate vacuuming more than any other household chore.
Most cats don't shed massive volumes of hair everywhere as long as they're groomed regularly.
Some definitely need grooming more than others - long haired breeds such as Persian and Himalayan cats need grooming every day. This isn't so much because they shed excessively, but more because they'll get tatty, knotted hair if it's not regularly groomed.
If you hate vacuuming but enjoy grooming your cat, then a 10 minute daily brush and comb should keep Kitty's fur in tip top condition and stop your vacuum cleaner from steaming and choking towards an early grave.
A lot of people assume that an allergic reaction to cats is triggered by the cat's hair. in fact, this isn't usually the case.
The reaction is triggered by a glycoprotein known as Fel d1. This is found in the cat's saliva and dander (dried skin flakes) as well as in the fur, and it's often the saliva and dander that cause the allergic reaction rather than the hair.
Cats that shed less fur than other breeds (Cornish Rex, Devon Rex and Sphynx) also release less Fel d1, so they often trigger less of an allergic reaction than other cats.
If you're normally allergic to cats but really want one as a pet, try to spend some time with one of the hypoallergenic breeds listed above before you buy one.
That way at least you'll know for sure whether you'll be OK with the breed before taking the big step of purchasing.
Some people are interested in non shedding cat breeds because they want a kitty that's low maintenance.
I don't really believe any of the breeds that shed minimal hair are low maintenance overall. The Cornish Rex and Devon Rex breeds are intelligent and active, and need lots of stimulation and attention from their owners.
The Sphynx cat secretes a lot of oil from its skin, and needs sponging almost daily to keep this under control (and to stop it staining the furniture!)
Before you get a cat, you need to be really sure you have the time and the energy to look after him. Grooming is only one aspect of cat care. Cats need entertainment, love, care and attention on a daily basis, and if they get sick they may need a huge amount of care and attention.
Still interested in non shedding cat breeds? The links below take you to pages that have more information on the cat breeds that shed relatively little hair.