Deforestation and the spread of cultivation are thought to be the principle threats to the rusty spotted cat. Hybridization with domestic cats may also be a threat.
The rusty-spotted cat is the cat family's smallest member. The Rusty-spotted cat, is an extremely rare cat of southern India and Sri Lanka, with a small population in Jammu and Gujarat. The habitat of this felid includes humid forests, scrubby grasslands adjoining forests as well as arid zones.
Prionailurus rubiginosus is considered as "Near Threatened" by the IUCN. CITES lists the species as "Appendix 1" for the Indian Population and "Appendix 2" for the Sri Lankan Population.