47 Different Cat Breeds

Some people think that cats are just cats, and that they are all the same. Those same people might be surprised to learn that there are dozens of different cat breeds, and each of them has its own specific traits, both in appearance and personality. Today we are going to take a look at 47 of our favorite cat breeds, and tell you a little bit about each one.

1. Abyssinian

This is a highly energetic cat that has the appearance of an Egyptian cat. It is not necessarily a lap cat, as it is very active, and it loves to climb to the highest points possible. This is a cat that is always on alert.

2. American Bobtail

The American Bobtail may look like a wild cat, but it is actually a very friendly and playful breed. These cats love attention from their humans, and will not hesitate to let you know when they want to play.

3. American Curl

Here is a cat that has absolutely adorable, curly ears. This is a breed that is known to be very affectionate, and they thrive on attention. They love their people, and they are also good with other animals.

4. American Wirehair

This cat has a curly coat that is low-maintenance. They are calm and friendly, and love to play without being too hyperactive. This is a cat that wants attention, but isn’t going to be demanding about it.

5. Balinese or Javanese

These cats are named for dancers, because they are so lithe and graceful. They are also extremely affectionate, and will follow you from room to room. They also love to talk, a lot, and are very devoted.

6. Bengal

If you want an exotic looking cat, the Bengal is perfect. They have the look of a wild, jungle cat, but they are extremely loving. They do have a lot of energy, and are highly intelligent so they are easily trained.

7. Birman

Here is a beauty that was once worshipped in temples in Burma. Not only is it beautiful, the Birman is also one of the sweetest and gentlest breeds you will ever have the pleasure of owning (or them owning you).

8. Bombay

Who says black cats are bad luck? The Bombay is black and beautiful, and incredibly affectionate. They love everyone, including children, and will follow their people around to get the attention they desire.

9. British Shorthair

This adorable, round-faced cat kind of looks like a small teddy bear, and is Britain’s most popular feline. This is a cat with a sweet and gentle disposition, and gets along well with people and other animals.

10. Burmese

A mix of the Burmese and the Chinchilla Persian, this cat has a playful and sociable temperament, and is quiet and easy going at the same time. This is a cat that is playful and laid back all at once.

12. Chartreux

This is a well-mannered cat that is sweet and quiet, and loves to be affectionate. It is also known to be an excellent mouser. It loves to relax, but it also loves some good play sessions with its people.

13. Chausie

This is a cat that is fast and fearless, and will always keep you on your toes. This is also a very intelligent cat, and it will have no problem finding the most out of the way spots to hide and play.

14. Colorpoint Shorthair

Here is a cat that is very affectionate, and very sensitive. It also loves to talk, and let you know exactly how it is feeling as it follows you around the house, waiting to be pampered and talked to.

15. Cornish Rex

The Cornish Rex is slim and graceful, and has a gorgeous curly coat. It loves to play, and has an abundance of energy. This is also a very intelligent cat that can be trained to do a few tricks, including opening doors.

16. Cymric

This is basically a long-haired Manx. It generally has no tail, and a stocky body. This is a cat that is playful and loves affection, but can also be quite independent at the same time. It is also very territorial.

17. Devon Rex

The short wavy coat, big ears, and big eyes make this cat very recognizable. This is a cat with tons of energy, and it is very dexterous. It can jump and climb like nobody’s business, and it loves people.

18. Donskoy

This is a hairless cat that loves people, whether it knows them or not, but is particularly affectionate with what it considers to be its people. It is very curious, and very affectionate, and wants to be loved.

19. Egyptian Mau

Here is a cat that can adapt to just about any situation, and is happy as an indoor or outdoor cat. It is an excellent hunter, and will likely bring you back presents after each hunting trip.

20. Exotic Shorthair

This cat has the facial features of a Persian, but not the long hair so it isn’t nearly as high-maintenance. It is easy going and affectionate, while being playful and active at the same time.

21. Havana Brown

Here is a cat that absolutely thrives on love and affection, and wants as much attention as you can possibly give. He loves to watch everything you do, and will constantly try to get your attention for cuddles.

22. Highlander

This is a very large cat with wild cat roots, but is a comical house pet with a great personality. This can be a bit of a goofball, and it loves to show off. This is a cat that loves people, even children.

23. Himalayan

This is the best of both worlds, a combination of the Siamese and the Persian. It is an absolutely gorgeous cat, with the gentleness of the Persian and the playfulness of Siamese cat, and it is very affectionate.

24. Japanese Bobtail

Here is a highly confident cat that gets along well with other people and animals, and it loves to talk. Because it is so confident, it can easily be left to its own devices for a few hours without getting lonely.

25. Khao Manee

This beautiful cat is pure white, with odd colored eyes, one gold and one blue. This is a rare breed, and one of the most social and devoted cats you will ever meet, and it loves to get lots of attention.

26. Kinkalow

This small cat is a little ball of energy, and loves lots of play time with its humans. It love to sleep on its back, and oddly enough, enjoys being on a trampoline. It has short, stubby legs, and curled ears.

27. Korat

This is a cat that wants to be the center of attention, at all times. It is highly intelligent, and has a huge vocal range that it is not afraid to use at any time to get the attention it expects and demands.

28. Kurilian Bobtail

This bobtailed cat has the look of a wild cat, and loves a rough and tumble lifestyle. It even likes to go swimming. It is gentle and loving, and loves most people. It even gets along well with other pets.

29. Lambkin Dwarf

Here is a tiny, short cat that is so adorable, with Munchkin and Selkirk Rex roots that give it a sweet and loving disposition. This is the ideal blend of both breeds, and it is one of the cutest cats you will ever see.

30. LaPerm

The name suits this cat with curly fur, and it is as cuddly as it is cute. This is actually an extremely affectionate cat that will tune into your emotions and comfort you when you need it.

31. Maine Coon Cat

This is one of the larger housecat breeds, and one of the oldest breeds originating in the US. This is a rugged, strong cat that has water-repellant fur. It is highly affectionate, and loves lots of cuddles.

32. Manx

Here is another cat with no tail, and that isn’t its only strange characteristic. This is a cat that is very protective of its home, and its people. It is also the most dog-like of all the cats, and loves to play fetch.

33. Minskin

This is a miniature cat that has extremely short legs, and the body is mostly hairless. This is a very unique little cat that is small in size, but huge in personality. It loves affection, and is highly intelligent.

34. Munchkin

This is a tiny cat with a huge heart, and is social with just about everyone. It even loves to be picked up, when not being cuddled, is a little ball of energy that loves to be active and play a lot.

35. Nebelung

Here is a cat that acts as distinguished as it looks. It is affectionate, but reserves its love for a very select group of people, usually just its owners. This is a quiet and low-maintenance cat that is very sensitive.

36. Norwegian Forest Cat

This is a strong and muscular cat that has one of the sweetest dispositions. It is very affectionate and even nurturing, and loves everyone it meets, even kids. It also has a lot of energy, and love to play.

37. Ocicat

This cat looks wild and exotic, but it is actually one of the sweetest breeds. This cat has no wild DNA, and is overly friendly at most times. You can even train it to go for walks on a leash.

38. Ojos Azules

This blue-eyed beauty can be is probably one of the rarest cat breeds you will find. It does love attention, and it is absolutely gorgeous. If you can find one of these hard to get cats, it is definitely meant to be.

39. Oriental

Here is a cat that will do just about anything to get the attention it craves. It loves belly rubs, and loves to talk until you finally talk back. If you want a companion, this is definitely the cat for you.

40. Persian

This is the most popular cat breed, for its beauty, and for its awesome personality. This is a relaxed and good natured cat, but it does require a lot of maintenance because of its long, lustrous coat.

41. Peterbald

This is another hairless cat that is highly intelligent, and very devoted to its people. It loves lots of affection, and wants plenty of cuddles and play time. This is another cat that loves to talk.

42. Pixie Bob

Here is a smart cat that can even learn to understand a few human words, and it can be leash trained to go for walks. This is another cat breed that has a personality similar to that of a dog.

43. Ragdoll

This big fluffy kitty can be carried around like a ragdoll, hence the name. It is laid back and mellow, and loves attention from just about everyone. It will follow you from room to room just to be near you.

44. Russian Blue

Here is a quiet and gentle cat that is an introvert and shy near strangers. It also doesn’t like large crowds or a lot of noise. But, it does love the humans it lives with, and is very affectionate.

45. Savannah Cat

Here is a cat that has it all: beauty, intelligence, and grace. This is an athletic cat that has plenty of energy, and it can be trained to walk on a leash. It can jump as high as eight feet, straight up.

46. Scottish Fold

You can’t help but fall in love with those big eyes and folded ears. This is an adorable little cat that is sweet and gentle, and loves everyone. It will be playful for most of its life, and loves to pose for photos.

47. Selkirk Rex

This is a cat with a thick, plush coat that is curly and soft. It is playful and affectionate, but is also very calm and mellow. It loves people, and gets along well with other pets.

Just for fun, here's a short video of the cat breeds that made it to the top 10 list:

This list is just a subjective list from some group of people and of course, the choices of the top and best breeds would still be up to you.

Albino Cats: The Ultimate Guide to their history, types, characteristics, temperament, and care

A lot of people make the mistake of thinking that albino cats and white cats are the same thing. Yes, albino cats are white, but there are thousands of white cats that are not albino. There are even websites that have made claims about albino and white cats that are completely untrue, which is just going to add to the confusion on the subject. So, today we are going to take a look at the characteristics of both white and albino cats, and you will be able to understand the differences between the two. We will also take a look at some of the myths surrounding both types of cats, and dispel most of them. Let’s get started.

What is an Albino Cat?

Let’s start at the start. Albinism comes from the Latin word, Albus, which basically means white. When any creature is an albino, it means that they have a genetic condition that causes them to have absolutely no pigmentation or color. For a cat to be truly albino, both parents must carry the genetic marker that makes a cat an albino. You may see a white coat, but there are a lot of subtle characteristics that make it a lot different from a regular white coat. Even the eyes and skin are going to be different with an albino cat. But, other than these differences, an albino cat is just like any other cat, and there are no major health issues.

One of the easiest ways to tell if a cat is albino or just a white cat is to look at its eyes. Average white cats can have a variety of eye colors, from green to gold to blue to one blue and one gold or green (known as heterochroma, or odd-eye). Albino cats do not have the same color spectrum. In fact, theirs is very limited, because there is no pigmentation. In most cases, an albino cat will have very pale blue eyes, or they may even be pink to pinkish-blue.

Now, this might confuse you a bit. In this case, pink is not actually a color. Instead, it is light that is reflecting the blood vessels in the eyes. This is also why an albino cat has no pigmentation in their skin, which usually appears to be one of many shades of very pale pink to light pink. Again, this is the light reflecting the blood flow beneath the skin.

In order for the body to produce melanin, the TYR or tyrosinase gene must be present. When a kitten or other animal is born without this gene, their body can’t produce melanin. A kitten that is born with a damaged or missing TYR gene is considered to be albino. Again, this can only happen if both parents carry the gene that is defective, and they will then pass it on.

Not only does melanin play a role in the color of the fur and eyes, it also helps to protect animals from the harsh rays of the sun. Melanin blocks out the harmful UV rays, while allowing the good rays to provide vitamin D. Melanin also plays an important role in the development of the eyes, particularly the optic nerves, muscles, and the irises. When there is a melanin deficiency, an animal may have difficulty with depth perception, focusing and tracking.

If you have or are considering getting an albino cat, it is best to make sure that it remains an indoor cat. Not only is it not likely to have great hunting skills due to the poor depth perception, tracking and focusing, it can also have vision issues because of the sun, as well as skin damage. Albino cats tend to be prone to skin cancer.

It is not just cats that can be albino. Most species have albinism at some points. For instance, Snow Bengals and some Oriental cat breeds are considered to be albinos. These animals are born white, and the color points develop as they get older. Other animals that can be albino include birds, fish, reptiles, amphibians, insects, mollusks, and all mammals, humans included.

Whiteness in Varying Degrees

A true albino cat is a rather rare thing. Most commonly we tend to see cats that are partially albino. In fact, this is actually quite common. For instance, many of the Oriental cats, including Siamese and Burmese, get their point markings from a variation of albinism. Cats that have the color-pointed coats have colors that are more concentrated in some areas than others. This actually depends on body heat. You will see more pigmentation in the cooler areas of the body, and less on the warmer areas. So, the warm areas have lighter colorations, and the cool areas are darker n color.

Did you know that color-pointed cats are born white? This is particularly true of cats that have been developed from the Siamese lines, including Thai cats. The color patterns will develop over time as the cats age and develop.

So, what are the various degrees of albinism in cats? Let’s take a look at the dominant and recessive degrees, as well as white spotting.

First of all, you always need to remember that cats with colored eyes are not albino, and that albino cats have very pale blue to pinkish colored eyes. The reason why a white cat is white is because they have a gene that covers the other color genes. The reason why an albino cat is an albino is because they have a mutation that creates an absence of color.

So, if you hear anyone say that they have a blue or an orange eyed cat and they are calling it an albino, you can be sure that they either have no idea what they are talking about, or that they are trying to make others believe that the cat is something it is not. What they really have is a dominant white cat, and this doesn’t necessarily mean that they have dominant personalities. It is all about the color.

  • Dominant White – Dominant white, also referred to as epistatic white, happens on a different gene than the black and red-based colors. Dominant white is the white that is associated with cats that are deaf, and it masks any other colors. A purebred dominant white cat can have odd, orange, or blue colored eyes, and there is a great chance that a dominant white cat with these eye colors will indeed be deaf. If the cat has one blue eye, it could be deaf on the same side as the blue eye. Deafness is less pronounced in cats with orange eyes. There are also dominant white kittens that are born with a color smudge on their heads, but this disappears as they get older. These kittens tend to not experience any deafness, and are not albinos. They can actually be any color, but white is the dominant color.
  • White Spotting – The gene that causes white spotting can also make a cat seem like a self-white cat. The gene is dominant, but how it is appears can vary. For instance, a cat may be completely white, have just a little bit of white, or have various amounts of white. In the case of white spotting, there is no link to deafness. But, white spotting can be the reason why some cats are totally white, but not albino. There are grades of spotting, from zero to 10, with zero means no white spotting and 10 means almost totally white. A grade 10 white spotted cat looks like a white cat, and there is rarely any deafness. You may also notice small color spots on cats that otherwise look to be completely white, because of the white spotting gene.
  • Recessive White – Now we get into the recessive white gene, which is what causes albinism. This cat has light blue or pink eyes, and the gene is recessive to both white cats and Siamese cats. Seal Point Siamese cats that have the recessive white gene are often a lot lighter in color than those that do not carry the gene. These cats also are light sensitive, and it is best to make sure that they are not exposed to bright sunlight, both for their vision and the fact that their skin can burn easily. Other than this, generally albino cats do not tend to have any health issues that any other cat might have.

Health Problems Associated with Albino Cats

When it comes to the health of your pet, it is important to know if there are any issues that could arise as a result of the cat being an albino.

Yes, there are some health problems that are common to albino pets, which is why it is not always recommended that people get animals with albinism, even though they are highly sought after by those who are looking for purebred pets.

That's why it is important to sought health and therapy guides about cat before planning on getting one. 

Here are the most common health problems associated with albino cats.

Light Sensitivity

We touched a bit on the light sensitivity of albino cats in the last section. Let’s go a bit deeper into this subject. Because there is a lack of pigmentation in a cat that is truly an albino, it has no ability to produce melanin. While we think of melanin as something that plays a role in skin tone, it also does many other things in the body, including giving color to the hair and eyes. It can also play a role in depth perception, and it is important in helping the body fight diseases and infections.

Because melanin gives color to the eyes, the lack of melanin means that the eyes are going to be pale, and be very sensitive to light. Being in direct sunlight can be damaging to their vision. It is best that an albino cat be an indoor cat for this reason, and you should also close the blinds during those times of the day when the sun is shining directly inside.

Indirect sunlight is okay, but an albino cat should never be in direct sunlight for more than a couple of minutes at the most. This particularly important if the cat has pink or red eyes, as it can cause blindness. If you have an albino cat and you think it has vision problems, it is important to contact your vet right away so you can get the best advice on how to treat the problem, if possible.

Skin Sensitivity

We also touched on the fact that an albino cat has extremely sensitive skin. Again, it is imperative that an albino cat not be in direct sunlight for any more than a few minutes. Keep them away from direct sunlight between noon and five pm, as this is when the sun’s rays are the strongest. It is also a good idea to get a non-toxic cream from your vet to put on the cat’s nose. Albino cats can sunburn very easily, and they have a higher chance of developing skin cancer than cats that do not carry the recessive white gene.

If you have an albino cat and it goes outdoors, it is a good idea to use sunscreen. Your vet can recommend the best type. Generally, it is best to use one that is meant for babies and children, and that has no colors or scents. Even if it is an indoor cat, it is still a good idea to use a bit of sunscreen on an albino pet

Deafness

While not all white cats are deaf, as is the common misconception, cats with albinism do tend to often be partially or even completely deaf. This is due to the fact that the autosomal gene W leads to a malformation of the inner ear. This is something that is common most albino animals, including humans. In fact, it was once believed that animals and people with albinism had mental deficiencies, which is obviously not the case at all. But, because an animal that is deaf cannot hear, they can’t understand. We now know that it has nothing whatsoever to do with the animal’s intelligence.

You can usually tell if a kitten is deaf, because they do not respond when you call to them. If you have an albino cat that is deaf, you will need to come up with other methods of communication with your cat. You will also need to learn how to care for a deaf cat, because there are some differences between this and caring for a hearing pet. It is a good idea to consult with your vet to find out the best ways to communicate, train, and care for an albino cat.

Deafness in albino cats isn’t always total. For instance, if the cat is odd eyed, it may be deaf on the side that has the blue eye, while the side with the regular colored eye could have perfect hearing. There are claims that the majority of all white cats, including albino cats, are at least partially deaf, but this is not exactly accurate. This is because there are different genes that cause the different types of whiteness, and not all of these genes can lead to deafness.

It really all comes down to the genes that have been passed onto the kitten by its parents. Let’s break this down by taking a look at the following scientific figures that show the percentages of white cats, and the percentage of deafness in white cats (in either one or both ears).

  • Only 5 percent of the entire cat population is white, with congenital deafness being very rare in cats that are not white.
  • The 5 percent that is white is pure white, and 15 to 40 percent of all pure white cats have one or both blue eyes.
  • Out of the cats with one or both blue eyes, 60 to 80 percent are deaf, with 20 to 40 percent having regular hearing. 30 to 40 percent of those with one blue eye tend to be deaf, with 60 to 70 percent having regular hearing.
  • Out of the 5 percent of white cats, 60 to 80 percent have eyes that are not blue, such as orange or green. Of the cats with these color eyes, 10 to 20 percent are often deaf, and 80 to 90 percent have regular hearing.
  • Deaf white cats with one or both blue eyes make up 0.25 to 1.5 percent of the total cat population.

Cats with white coats and blue eyes make up 0.75 to 2 percent of the total cat population.

Caring for an Albino Cat

All cats require a specific amount of care, but when you have an albino cat, there are many things that you need to do differently, as they need extra-special care. In fact, this is why many people choose not to adopt an albino cat. Yes, they are beautiful to look at, but they can have many health issues that are not as common in other cats, including blindness, deafness, redness around the eyes due to sensitivity, skin problems, and even skin cancer. It is important to have a good relationship with your vet, and discuss with them the proper care for an albino cat so you can sure that yours lives a long and healthy life.

Albino Animal Myths and Facts

There are a lot of myths surrounding both white and albino cats and other animals. As we already mentioned, the only real similarity is the fact that they both have white coats. Other than that, there are actually several differences. This is just one of the myths you will hear about white and albino cats, along with many actual facts. Let’s take a look at some of the myths and facts surrounding albino cats.

  • All White Cats are Deaf – We have already discussed the fact that this is just not true. Yes, a large percentage of albino cats are deaf or partially deaf, but this is due to the damaged or missing gene, and is not a problem that is common in white cats that are not albino. In fact, albino cats aren’t actually white. They lack color, which is completely different, so they are nothing like a regular white cat. Even Charles Darwin wrote, “Some instances of correlation are quite whimsical; thus cats which are entirely white and have blue eyes are generally deaf.” So, even back in the 19th century, this myth was debunked.
  • Albino Animals are Worshipped – Whether it is a cat or another animal, there are some groups and cultures that revere and worship albino animals. It is often thought that animals with albinism can bring about good luck. In some cultures, albino worship is taken so seriously that it is considered a sin to hunt and kill an albino animal. It is even considered bad luck in some cultures to injure or kill an albino animal, and they hold them in great esteem.
  • Albino Animals have Short Lifespans – An albino house cat is one thing. It will be properly cared for, so it should have as long of a life as any other house cat. But, an albino animal born in the wild has a very short life expectancy. Often, they are killed by their parents because they are different. If they are allowed to live, they don’t have great hunting skills, due to their lack of depth perception and the inability to focus well, and they will likely die of starvation.

Below is a short video to help you understand some facts about albino cats:

They are extremely rare with only 2% chance of occurring which possibly made some people think that Albino cats are just white cats and doesn't exist.

Some already struggle with what cat breed do they have and much more than they'd know about the existence of Albino cats.

Conclusion

As you can see, albino cats are completely different from any other type of cat you will ever own. While it may look like a typical cat, there is nothing typical at all about an albino cat. They have different genetics, and they have health issues that are not nearly as common in other cats. Owning an albino at may be a bit of a challenge in the beginning, but as long as you make sure that it is kept out of direct sunlight, and gets the proper vet care, you should have your pet for many years to come.

Tabby Cats: The Ultimate Guide to their history, types, characteristics, temperament, and care

Whatever your interest in tabby cats might be, there is no denying that they are one of the most recognizable cat types in the world. Although that may the case, many people struggle to define what a tabby cat is, and as there are so many varieties, what one tabby cat may look like, may be very different from another. That's why we have decided to make a complete guide to tabby cats to help you figure them out.

In this article, we are going to define exactly what qualifies a cat to be a 'tabby’ and explain the differences between the various types of tabby cat that there are. We’ll also tell you why they make such wonderful pets, and some fun facts about them too

The Definition of a Tabby Cat

The first fact we are going to tell you may come as a surprise, but a tabby is not a breed of cat. Unlike, Siamese or Persian which are certified pedigrees, tabby isn't recognized as a specific breed.

Instead, the term tabby is used to describe any domestic cat which has distinctive markings such as lines, dots, stripes and swirls, which identify it as a tabby cat. Other than these, the most recognizable feature of tabbies is the capital 'M' marking on its forehead.

So, rather than being the name of a cat breed, the term tabby is one which describes the physical description of cats. That being said, there are several breeds of cats, whose markings are generally those of a tabby so almost all cats within that breed could be called tabbies. There are also countless mixed breed cats and mongrel cats who are tabby cats because they have the appropriate markings.

Where the Name 'Tabby' Comes From

If you look up the definition of the word 'tabby' you will likely see two definitions. One is obviously the cats we are talking about in this article, and the other is a fabric or silk with a striped pattern. The question is 'Which came first?'

Answer – it was the fabric, whose name in Arabic was 'Atabi,' and was made in a district of ancient Baghdad, called Attabiah. In the 17th century the word atabi, was altered to tabby by those who spoke English, but this was long before tabby cats had been recognized as a distinct type of cat.

The word tabby then began to be used to describe the striped markings on cats, but it wasn't until the late 18th century that cats with these markings were called tabbies.

The 'M' on a Tabby Cat's Forehead

An individual cat does not have to have all the associated markings of tabbies, to be called a tabby cat, but it must at least have one of them, and that is an 'M' on its forehead. This more than any other type of marking is what defines a cat as being a tabby, and regardless of whether they also have other stripes, swirls, and patches, you should always be able to see an 'M' outline on the forehead of a true tabby cat.

Some of the mystique about tabby cats comes from the many theories and legends about what the 'M' stands for. One of the earliest comes from Ancient Egypt, where the word for cat was 'Mau', which if you think it about sounds very much like 'Meow,' the noise cats make.

Another story relates to Mary, who when Jesus was a baby asked animals to move closer to him to comfort him and keep him warm. The only one small enough to get into the manger was a small tabby cat whom Mary thanked by rendering the first letter of her name on its forehead.

The final legend is that a tabby cat called Muezza saved the life of Prophet Mohammad when a snake attacked him, and to show his gratitude, Mohammad bestowed the letter 'M' on its forehead.

 Whichever of these you prefer or even if you have your theory why the 'M' is there, there can be little doubt, that this letter on their forehead adds to the personality and beauty that tabby cats have.

The Five Main Tabby Cat Types

Other than the 'M' on their forehead, there are several other markings that are common to tabby cats. Specific breeds will have very defined markings which are common to that breed and with which they are recognized as such. 

The markings of other tabbies which are mongrels or crossbreeds can be a combination of some or all of them, depending on their genetics.

To help classify and identify tabby cats, their markings have been split into five types. These are mackerel, spotted, ticked, patched and classic, and while that might sound like the line-up for a bizarre new range of burgers, they are actually the names given to most common tabby cat markings.

Mackerel Tabby Cat

The answer to the question that may be in your head right now is, 'Yes, it is named after mackerel fish.' Having said that, there are some people who believe these markings are more akin to a tiger, and they'll often call a tabby with mackerel markings a 'Tiger Cat.' We'll stick with mackerel for the purposes of this article, as this is the more common name for these markings.

What you will see on a mackerel tabby are thin, stripes around their legs and their tail, with the ones on their legs often looking like they have bracelet around them. Sticking with the jewelry theme, their chest will have lines which give the appearance of them wearing a necklace.

The sides of their body will have stripes which can be either solid or broken, and in their stomach area, they normally have two rows of button-like marks.

Across the cat's haunches and shoulder, there will be very faint lines which produce a pattern similar to that you would see if you were looking at the bones in a fish skeleton, which is obviously where the reference to mackerel comes from.

Spotted Tabby Cat

The name gives this one away somewhat, and as you have probably already worked out, these tabbies have spots. Their spots can be oval-shaped or circular, small or large, and they normally appear as dark blotches.

The spots can be in a random pattern along the sides of their body and along their back, but they can also appear in straight lines. With these, it is often noted that they look the lines of a mackerel tabby pattern whose straight lines have been interrupted.

Spotted tabbies can sometimes have the necklace markings in their chest area similar to a mackerel tabby, but these are not as pronounced, and tend to be quite faint.

Classic Tabby

Tabbies with this pattern has the most common tabby cat pattern, and this pattern is the one which most people think of when they are referring to a tabby cat.

The main features are prominent and bold swirls which appear on the side of the cat's body, with some of them looking like large blotches. This may be why in some countries, such as the UK, cats with this pattern are called 'Blotched Tabbies.' They are also known as 'Marbled Tabbies,' due to the color contrasts and patterns being similar to marble surfaces.

Running along their back, and from their neck to their tail, a classic tabby will have three broad lines. They normally have rings around their neck which gives us our third tabby that seems to be wearing a necklace. Classic tabbies have button-like blotches on their belly, and their tail and legs will tend to have broad bands.

Ticked Tabby Cat

Don't worry – this does not mean the cat has ticks. Instead, it refers to markings which these tabby cats have. Unlike the other tabbies we have spoken about, ticked tabbies do not have any large swirls, bold stripes or distinctive blotches. This often raises the question as to whether they can really be described as tabbies at all. But with the letter 'M' still visible on their forehead, they most definitely are.

Ticked tabbies are often called 'Agouti' due to the coloration in their hair. Agouti hair has alternate dark and light bands and this is what many ticked tabbies appear to have.

​The most prominent breed of ticked tabby is the Abyssinian cat, who from a distance seems to have no distinguishable markings, so you would not expect it to be a tabby, but if you look at one closely, you will see that its fur has the colored bands which are indigenous to ticked tabbies.

Patched Tabby Cat

As the name suggests these tabbies have different colored patches across their fur. The most common colors for these patches are brown with which you might also see red or ginger colored patches. The other common color for patches is a blue-grey which is sometimes seen along with cream patches.

In terms of any distinctive markings, patched tabbies can have any of the markings we have already described. This means its fur may show traits of the classic, mackerel, ticked, or spotted tabby. If a patched tabby does have any of those distinctive markings, they are more commonly seen on their head and legs.

Patched tabbies are sometimes referred to as tortoiseshell tabbies, and this is where it can get complicated. A cat which is not a tabby with tortoiseshell fur is nicknamed a 'tortie.' However, when the cat in question is a tabby, that nickname changes to 'torbie.' In other words, the second 't' in tortie becomes a 'b' in torbie.

Below are some amazing patterns of tabby cats:

​Some of these patterns are commonly bred and seen but there are some that can be quite rare in most places.

Tabby Cat Colors

As well as the distinguishable markings that identify the different types of tabby cats, there are also variations in their colors. It is possible that these colors could appear on all five types of the tabby cats we have discussed so far. This is to be expected, given that any single tabby cat could be the result of two tabby cats mating, who were different types and had different colors.

As well as individual tabby cats having an array of colors, there are some colors which are sometimes used when describing the cat. These cats will still likely be classified within one of the five types, but because colors are often easier to identify than a marking pattern, they are used. Neither way is right or wrong if both the people discussing the cat understand the difference.

Black Tabby Cat

This is one of the most common colors that the markings on tabby cats have, albeit they are often within a combination of colors which will include browns. Where black markings become very distinctive is when the cat's other fur colors are lighter such as silver or white. When the term 'black tabby cat' is used, it is normally in relation to a tabby cat who is predominantly black, where their markings might be a dark grey and only just distinguishable.

Grey Tabby Cat

Grey is very common across all tabby types, and there can be various shades of grey ranging from light to dark. A tabby which has virtually all grey fur will have a combination of dark and light grey stripes, spots, swirls or patches depending on which type of tabby they are. In certain lights, grey tabbies can have a beautiful blue or silvery hue to them, which looks stunning.

Brown Tabby Cat

This is the most common tabby color you will see, and it is brown markings that most people recognize as the quintessential tabby cat. Taking this a step further, a brown, classic tabby cat is generally what many people believe is the cat 'breed' called tabby, but as you now know, they are all wrong.

Ginger Tabby Cat

Ginger is the last of the four colors that we are likely to hear being used to define a tabby cat. Some might argue that ginger is actually a light brown, but many ginger tabbies, are closer to orange than brown.

They may not be as common, but a ginger tabby cat once held a Guinness World Record. Not for anything you might think a normal cat might do, but for the most syndicated comic strip. We are of course talking about, Garfield, who is surely the world's most famous tabby cat, and a ginger tabby cat to be precise.

Common Tabby Cat Breeds

Although we have previously stated that tabby is not a breed of cat, there are several cat breeds which are tabbies. To give you an analogy, if we were talking about dogs, a terrier is not a specific breed of dog, but you have breeds which are all terriers such as Scottish, Bull and Boston.

There are around 30 cat breeds which can be classified as tabbies, and while we can't go through every single one of them, here are four of the most popular.

Maine Coon

This is not only a very popular cat breed, it is at the top of the league when it comes to popular tabby breeds too. Maine Coons are one of the largest domestic cat breeds and it is because of its placid nature they are often referred to as the 'gentle giants' of the cat world.

Apart from their larger bodies, they look even bigger because of their long coats. These often have a glossy appearance, are can come in a variety of colors and markings. The most common of these are brown classic and mackerel.

American Shorthair

These are one of the most friendly and well-mannered domestic cats in existence. They mix very well with children and other pets, so if your family is split between getting a dog and a cat, the American Shorthair will allow you to have both. They are also very low-maintenance cats and easy to care for.

They are a medium to large tabby breed which can come in a variety of tabby patterns on their fur, and in several different colors as well. These include brown, silver, grey, and white.

Abyssinian

We mentioned these when we discussed ticked tabbies because they are the most common breed with ticked or 'Agouti' fur. They can come in several colors variations, with the most common being reddish brown, fawn, and blue.

Abyssinians are thought to be one of the oldest breeds of domesticated cats, and their loyalty and desire to be close to their human owner is a likely reason for this.

They are also extremely intelligent, playful and loving cats.

American Bobtail

American bobtails are friendly and active domestic cats, which are particularly known for being very intelligent. Their appearance doesn't immediately lend itself to you thinking they look domesticated, but they are extremely playful which makes them great family pets.

Their name comes from the fact that their tails are short and normally less than half the normal length of a cat's tail. They can come in any of the colors associated with tabbies, and the patterns on their fur tend to be classic and swirled.

Tabby Cat Traits and Behaviors

Due to the large array of breeds, and the fact that a cat can be regarded as a tabby purely because of its markings, to specify behaviors that apply to all tabby cats, is difficult, but not impossible. There’s enough feedback from those who’ve owned tabbies and evidence from experts who have studied tabby cats to give us a decent idea of their personalities, so here are some of the most generic ones.

Community

Cats often give the persona of being very individual, but tabby cats buck that trend by being seen to be very community spirited. They like being part of a group or family and will happily share food with other cats it regards as another member of that team. Tabby females will also care for kittens that are not their own and help to raise them.

Vocal

Tabby cats know what they like, and they are not afraid to let you know when something needs to be done for them. When they want back in the house you'll hear them outside the door, and if their food or water bowls need filling they will tell you in much the same way children will pester you for candy or a drink.

Social

Tabby cats mix well with other pets, and children and are very happy to join in with any fun, walks, or games which the other members of the family are taking part in. This extends to the love and affection that they receive, as tabbies are well known for returning it in a big way.

Hunters

As cute and cuddly as most tabbies might seem to us, to mice and rats they may not be seen in the same way. This is because tabby cats are excellent hunters, and if you ever have a problem with rodents in your property, a tabby cat is a very effective solution.

They love chasing mice, but one problem which may arise is when they catch one, rather than kill it, they will tend to play with it and torture it. This may sound horrific, but it is simply the sporting element of a tabby's nature coming through.

Entertaining

Tabby cats are great fun, and they love nothing more than cavorting around the room with their toys, and anything else that you give them to play with. There are probably more YouTube videos of tabby cats getting up to some hilarious high jinx than any other type of cat, so keep your video camera at the ready when it's your tabby's playtime.

Tabby Cat Fun Facts

Having just mentioned how entertaining they can be, to finish off our guide we thought we would give our top 5 fun facts about tabby cats. We hope you enjoy them.

Tabby Cat Fun Fact #1

The heaviest tabby cat ever was called Himmy. He lived in Australia in the 1980s and weighed over 46 lbs. Guinness, who compile world records, was so concerned that cat owners would overfeed their cats simply to try to break this record, they scrapped this category soon after Himmy passed away.

Tabby Cat Fun Fact #2

A tabby cat called Stubbs was elected mayor of the Alaskan town of Talkeetna. He has been re-elected several times, which the locals say is due to him having never raised local taxes.

Tabby Cat Fun Fact #3

Many famous celebrities through the years have been huge tabby cat fans including Winston Churchill, David Bowie, Hilary Swank, Meryl Streep and Taylor Swift. A candidate for the prize for the most obsessed is writer Mark Twain who loved them so much that he would rent tabby cats to take with him on vacation.

Tabby Cat Fun Fact #4

If you love cats you could soon be ditching Starbuck's and Costa at coffee time, because across the USA there are over 90 ‘Cat Cafes’ in locations which include Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York and Pittsburgh. In Atlanta, GA, there is a 'Tabby Cat Café' which has friendly cats on the premises and works to help local cat adoption charities.

Tabby Cat Fun Fact #5

If you were a male, orange tabby, your chances of finding another orange tabby to be your female companion or mate wouldn't exactly be favorable. The numbers show that there is only 1 female orange tabby for every 4 males, so it is a pretty crowded field.

​The video below is more of some quick and fun facts about tabby cats:

Summary

We hope you've enjoyed our complete guide to tabby cats, and that your knowledge and understanding of them has been enhanced. Tabby cats are fascinating given their history, and the vast array of types, colors and marking that they can have. There's also the mystique surrounding the 'M' on their forehead which just adds to their enormous charm and appeal.

Norwegian Forest Cat: The Ultimate Guide to their history, types, characteristics, temperament, and care

If you want a fluffy, cuddly house pet, the Norwegian Forest Cat, or “Wegie” as it is lovingly known as, is just what you need. This is the official cat of Norway, where it is known as the “skogkatt,” meaning “forest cat.”

The Norwegian Forest Cat looks a lot like the Maine Coon Cat, which make sense seeing as how they are distantly related, but this is a special breed that has very special characteristics.

This is a cat is often referred to as the gentle giant cat which simply means large and gentle, and loves to nurture. It makes a wonderful family pet, and gets along with everyone, including other animals.

Origin

The Norwegian Forest Cat has been a common sight in Norway for as many as 4,000 years or longer. It has a thick coat that is resistant to water, and it is built for the cold, harsh environment of the Scandinavian woods. This is also a cat of myth. Folklore says that these cats pulled the chariot of the Goddess Freya across the sky, and they also hold special places in many Norse fairy tales. Farmers have kept Norwegian Forest Cats for centuries, using them as mousers as well as companions.

Interestingly enough, the Wegie wasn’t recognized as an official breed until 1938, when it was shown at a cat show in Oslo. The development of the breed began at this time, but was put on hold during World War II. Finally, in the 1970’s, Norwegian cat breeders began to preserve the bloodlines of these cats and gave them a standardized appearance. The Norwegian Forest Cat was even declared to be the official cat of Norway by King Olaf V.

The Norwegian Forest Cat came to the United States in 1979, and the breed was recognized by the International Cat Association in 1984, and then the Cat Fanciers Association in 1993. Other cat registries recognize this beautiful and loving breed.

Physical Standards

How big do Norwegian Forest Cats get? Usually around 12 pounds (both male and female). When doing a Norwegian Forest Cat size comparison with other house cats, remember that they tend to look larger because they have so much long fur.

It can take up to five years for a Norwegian Forest Cat to fully grow. It is taller than other cat breeds, standing about 12 to 18 inches in height, which can cause some health issues, including hip dysplasia, because of problems during growth.

Other than that, there are not a lot of known health issues associated with this type of cat, and it has a lifespan of around eight to 12 years.

This cat is smaller than its distant cousin, the Maine Coon Cat, but is similar in appearance. The coat is long, straight, and soft, and can be found in a variety of colors, including white, black, red, silver, cream, blue, red, cameo, tortoiseshell, brown, and bluecream.

What is interesting about this cat is that there is no standard color or pattern. You will find Norwegian Forest Cats in just about every cat color, and they have different types of patterns and markings.

For instance, you may see one that is solid color, or they can be bicolor, tortoiseshell, calico, tabby, ticking, smoke, and shaded. The only colors and patterns you will not see are chocolate, lavender, lilac, and Siamese-pointed patterns.

As for the body of this cat, the head is shaped kind of like an inverted triangle, with a point at the chin and getting wider at the top. The ears are medium to large size, and they are tufted.

A Norwegian Forest Cat has almond-shaped eyes that are usually green, gold, or copper in color. But, if you have a white Norwegian Forest Cat, it could have blue eyes, or at least one blue eye.

These cats have powerfully muscled bodies, with large paws that have tufts of fur between the toes. The tails are bushy, and generally as long as their bodies.

Are They Hypoallergenic?

One thing to keep in mind is that the Norwegian Forest Cat is not hypoallergenic. When you come right down to it, there is no such thing as a pet that is, although there are some that cause fewer allergic reactions than others.

The Norwegian Forest Cat actually has a tendency to shed more than other cats because of its long hair, which can be a problem for many allergy sufferers.

Grooming a Norwegian Forest Cat

It is true that cats tend to do the majority of their own grooming, but some do need a little bit of human intervention. This is especially true of long-haired breeds, including the Norwegian Forest Cat.

It is important that you brush these cats daily, and it is even better if you are able to brush them more than once each day.

Unless you are going to be showing your cat, it is probably not necessary to bath it, unless it happens to get into something and needs help getting clean. Many owners take their cats to pet groomers who specialize in long-haired cats.

Other than grooming, there is really not much difficulty in caring for a Norwegian Forest Cat, although they do require a lot of social attention.

Activeness

One thing that you should keep in mind is that Norwegian Forest Cats are extremely active.

Remember, they have been used as mousers for thousands of years. So, it is important that you make sure that your cat has plenty of play time, and lots of toys to play with when you are not around. 

If your cat is strictly indoors (which it should be), you may want to consider getting a cat wheel so your cat can walk and run for exercise.

Where to Get a Norwegian Forest Cat

There are different ways that you can get a Norwegian Forest Cat. If you are looking for a cat that you can show or breed, you will want to buy your cat from a reputable breeder. On the other hand, if you are looking for a house pet, there are other options.

The first option should still be a breeder, but there are also times when you might find one at a local shelter, or someone may even have to sell or give away their pet because of allergies, moving, etc. Just remember, if you see an ad for a Norwegian Forest Cat for sale, make sure that you ask plenty of questions before spending any money.

Buying from a breeder is the best option, because you can learn about the cat, and make sure that there are going to be no health issues. Today’s Norwegian Forest Cat breeders tend to let the kittens go at around 12 to 16 weeks of age.

At this point, they have had their first shots, and they have the physical strength and stability to be able to adapt to a new environment. They also have been socialized, so they are not terrified of new people.

How Much Does a Norwegian Forest Cat Cost?

The Norwegian Forest Cat price will depend on a number of factors, and you can expect to pay anywhere from $300 to $800. Of course, there are instances where the Norwegian Forest Cat price could be less or more.

For instance, a rescue at a shelter may cost as little as $100, while one from a breeder with a quality bloodline could cost $1,000 or more.

When discussing how much is a Norwegian Forest Cat with a breeder, don’t forget that most breeders do have to make several trips to Europe in order to research and get cats for their own breeding programs.

You also have to take into consideration titles received through parentage or in competitions, as well as their type and their markings. Also, make sure that you discuss things like spaying and neutering, feeding, veterinary care, and registering the kitten.

Norwegian Forest Cat Owner Responsibilities

As a pet owner, you are responsible for your cat for at least eight to 10 years, if not longer. During this time, there are many things that you need to do in order to ensure that your pet has a comfortable, healthy, and happy life.

Do not take the responsibilities of pet ownership lightly, especially if you are going to consider getting a cat that could cost hundreds of dollars. Let’s take a look at some of the things that you will need to provide for your Norwegian Forest Cat.

Food and water

You are responsible for providing your pet with the basic necessities of life, including food and water. Make sure that your cat always has access to fresh water, and that their food and water dishes are always clean. Their food should be nutritious, and you may want to discuss the diet with your vet or breeder.

Litterbox and litter

Ideally, your kitten will already be litterbox trained. Make sure that they have a good-size litter box, and that there is always plenty of litter on hand. It is a good idea to have a mat beneath the litter box to catch any litter that might happen to spray out or be on your cat’s feet as they exit the box.

Bed and blankets

It is likely that your cat is going to end up sleeping in your bed with you. But, they also need their own special place where they can nap undisturbed. Make sure that you provide them with a bed and soft blankets to snuggle up in. This can be as simple as a cardboard box, or as elaborate as a brass cat bed.

Toys

As mentioned, Norwegian Forest Cats are highly energetic, so they need to have plenty of toys to play with. Make sure that you have toys for them in every room in your home. That way, if they want to play, they will tend to use their favorite toys rather than destroy something that isn’t a toy.

Now that you know the things that you need to get for your cat, it’s time to talk about the things you need to do in order to care for her throughout her life.

Spay/neuter

We can’t stress enough how important it is to spay/neuter your pet before it reaches sexual maturity.

In fact, unless you are buying your cat so you can breed them yourself, most breeders will insist that the cat be spayed or neutered, and you will need to sign a contract agreeing to this.

An unneutered male cat will mark its territory by spraying, which leaves a foul odor that is nearly impossible to get rid of. An unsprayed female can end up with a variety of health issues, including endometriosis.

Socialization

The breeder will likely have already begun to socialize their Norwegian Forest Cat kittens, and it is your responsibility to continue the process.

These cats are very loving, and they get along with everyone. So, make sure that they are introduced to a number of different people at an early age, and then they will want to make friends with everyone they meet, even neighborhood dogs.

Yes, you can easily have these cats with dogs and there shouldn’t be any issues to worry about.

Exercise

Your Norwegian Forest Cat will need plenty of exercise, for a couple of reasons. For one thing, an overweight cat is not a healthy cat, so you need to make sure that they get enough exercise to help them stay slim and healthy.

Also, these cats have tons of energy. By making sure that they get lots of exercise, you are making sure that they aren’t going to end up using their energy for things that you would rather they weren’t doing, such as destroying things around the house. Agility training is another option.

Keep them indoors

There are some people who think it is cruel to keep a cat indoors all of the time. It is actually a lot more cruel to let them roam around outside, where they can be attacked by other animals, get hit by motor vehicles, pick up parasites and diseases, and face many other dangers.

Some breeders will actually insist that the cats they sell be kept strictly indoors, or only outside when on a leash and accompanied by you, and this will be part of your contract when buying the cat.

Care and attention

A Norwegian Forest Cat doesn’t need much more attention than any other cat you would have in your home, with one exception; they do require more grooming than their short-haired counterparts.

You will need to make sure that your Norwegian Forest cat is groomed regularly, and that it gets plenty of attention. Of course, vet care is also important, and you should be watching your pet for any signs of health issues. 

Here's some additional facts about Norwegian Forest Cats:

Basically, give a Norwegian Forest Cat the same level of care and attention that you would any beloved pet.

Norwegian Forest Cat Characteristics

Now it’s time to look at the characteristics of the Norwegian Forest Cat. We have already mentioned that this is a rather large cat, weighing in at around 12 pounds for both male and female cats. It can stand around 16 inches in height, and some can grow even taller.

Of course, the long fur makes these cats look even larger. They are not as large as their distant cousin the Maine Coon Cat, but the fur often makes it look as if they are.

One of the first things we want to talk about in this section is how these cats behave. It has already been noted in this article that these are highly energetic cats, and that they can be a bit destructive if they do not have outlets for their energy.

When it comes to temperament and personality, this is a cat that is mellow and loveable, or in other words, a big baby. This is a cat that is going to follow you around the house wherever you go, so don’t expect to ever use the washroom in peace again.

If you have children or other pets in the home, a Norwegian Forest Cat is an excellent choice. These cats get along with just about everyone, and they are great with children.

Often, you will find children becoming best friends with their Norwegian Forest Cats. Just remember, not only do you have to teach cats how to get along with children, you also need to teach your children how to properly interact with cats and other pets.

These cats are also good with other animals, and there should be no problem having other pets, including dogs in the house, because the Norwegian Forest Cat personality is just that easy going.

Cats by nature are highly intelligent creatures, and the Norwegian Forest Cat is no exception.

While this is a cat that truly loves attention, it is also very independent, and very intelligent. So, be prepared to have a cat that may just be smarter than most of the people in your household.

They are going to figure out how to read each and every one of you, and wrap them  around their massive paws. They are also going to make many attempts to communicate with you vocally, using various sounds, including meowing and chirping noises.

Over time, you will likely come to figure out what each of their sounds means, so you can accommodate their needs as they feel they so rightly deserves.

Now we get to the main characteristics of the Norwegian Forest Cat – the colors and patterns. One of the most wonderful things about these cats is that you are not limited to one or two colors or color combinations.

Just about any color and combination you see on most other cats, you will see on Norwegian Forest Cats.

Let’s talk about the coat before we get into the colors. These cats have what is known as a double coat.

When you press the coat with your fingers, you should see an impression left behind. The outer part of the coat is smooth and long, soft, but not dry, and has water-repellent guard hairs that cover the dense and heavy undercoat.

There are three sections of ruff: short back, side mutton chops, and full-frontal bib. The britches are full on the hind legs, but the coat is uneven here, with the undercoat being much less dense. Here is an interesting tidbit.

It takes approximately two years for the coat to completely come in for all colors of Norwegian Forest Cats except for those with the tabby markings and coloration. If you live in a warm climate, you may notice that your cat’s coat is not as long as others of the same breed.

This is because they need to be able to stay cool, especially during the summer months.

Let’s take a look at the coloration of the Norwegian Forest Cat. We can’t just say that these cats are a certain color or pattern. You can find these cats in many different color combinations and patterns, from solid colors to tabbies to calicos and more.

Some will have white spots on their chests and chins (particularly those with tabby markings), and all colors can have white buttons, lockets, and spots.

You will find tabby, orange, calico, black, and many other color combinations and patterns, and some litters can have this type of variety among the kittens.

Norwegian Forest Cat Maintenance and Health Care

If you are going to invest in a Norwegian Forest Cat, you need to understand about health care, and proper maintenance for one of these cats.

There are some health issues in both pedigreed and mixed breeds that quite possibly might be genetic in nature. But, these are basically very healthy cats that can live 14 to 16 years, and sometimes even longer.

Since it is important to understand the diseases that are seen in the breed, let’s take a look at the most common health issues of the Norwegian Forest Cat.

Glycogen storage disease IV

This is a rare condition that affects how glucose is metabolized. Kittens with this disease are generally stillborn, or do not survive more than a few hours past birth.

Unfortunately, there are some instances where a kitten shows no signs of this disease until they are a few months, and they don’t usually live for more than a few months.

In order to know if a cat is affected and/or is a carrier of this disease, DNA testing is necessary.

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

This is a type of heart disease that is inherited in many cat breeds, including the Maine Coon Cat. It is not been proven that it is heritable in the Norwegian Forest Cat, but it is something to watch out for.

Polycystic kidney disease

This is a genetic condition that is progressive, and destroys the kidneys. Unfortunately, there is no DNA test available for this disease to use on Norwegian Forest Cats. But, it can be detected via ultrasound by the time a kitten reaches 10 months of age.

Retinal dysplasia

This is a defect in the eyes that can cause spots on the retina. Fortunately, this is not a serious condition, and it doesn’t have any effect on the cat’s vision.

Now let’s talk about how to care for your Norwegian Forest Cat. As we have already mentioned earlier in this article, it is imperative that you brush your cat’s coat regularly. Some people recommend once or twice a week, but if you can do it daily, or even once or twice daily, it is best.

Not only is it going to help keep your cat’s fur from becoming matted, it will also help to cut down on shedding, which is extremely important if there is anyone in the home who may have a cat allergy.

It is rarely necessary to bath a Norwegian Forest Cat, especially since their coats are pretty much waterproof to begin with, making bathing quite difficult.

Start brushing your cat’s teeth when it is a kitten. This is going to help to prevent periodontal disease. Again, weekly brushing is recommended, but daily cleanings are ideal.

Also, make sure that you wipe your cat’s eyes daily to remove any discharge from the corners, using a soft, damp cloth. Do not use the same section of the cloth for both eyes, so there is no chance of spreading infection if one eye happens to be infected.

Check your cat’s ears each week, and if there is any dirt, wipe it clean with a cotton ball or a soft, damp cloth (dampened with a half and half mix of warm water and cider vinegar). Never use cotton swabs, as they can damage the inner ear.

If you have children, the Norwegian Forest Cat may just be the perfect pet. These are very docile, loving, and gentle cats, and many do not have a problem with being dressed up in doll clothes and wheeled around in doll carriage.

Check the video below for some tips of taking care of your Norwegian Forest Cat: 

They love attention, and will follow your children around everywhere in the hopes of being invited to play with them. This is also a great cat to have with dogs, and it is not uncommon to see Norwegian Forest Cats and dogs become the absolute best of friends.

Types of Norwegian Forest Cats

While with many cat breeds there are a variety of types within the breed, there are no specific types of Norwegian Forest Cats. But, there are things to look for that will tell you that a cat is a Norwegian Forest Cat.

Remember, these cats can come in a variety of colors and patterns, so you need to know specific signs to look for. One is the fact that they have those thick double coats.

Their coats are insulated and waterproof, and designed to withstand colder Scandinavian temperatures. Their fur is long and coarse, with guard hairs over the dense undercoat.

They also tend to have a full frontal ruff, a bushy tail and rear britches, and tufted paws, all of which help to provide protection from the snow and cold.

There are only a few colors you won’t see in Norwegian Forest Cats, including chocolate and lilac, and the only pattern you won’t see is one that is like that of many Siamese cats.

A black Norwegian Forest Cat is truly a sight to behold, as is a Norwegian Forest Cat white. There are also orange Norwegian Forest Cats, as well as black and white Norwegian Forest Cats, and most other color combinations in between.

Comparing Norwegian Forest Cats to other Cats

Now it is time to take a look at Norwegian Forest Cats and compare them with their distant cousins, Maine Coon Cats, as well as with average house cats. Let’s start with the Maine Coon comparison.

When it comes to Norwegian Forest Cats vs Maine Coon Cats, both are ideal to have as pets, but there are differences. What is the biggest difference between Maine Coon and Norwegian Forest Cats?

First, we need to look at Norwegian Forest Cat vs Maine Coon size. The Maine Coon can grow to be about twice as large as the Norwegian Forest Cat. They are similar in appearance, and can come in many color combinations. The fur is different, with the Main Coon having much softer and silkier fur that is not waterproof.

Now let’s look at Norwegian Forest Cat vs Maine Coon vs. Siberian. They are all long-haired cats, and all grow to be quite large. Also, all are bred for colder temperatures. But, they all come from different parts of the world, and have very distinct differences in characteristics. All are friendly and loveable, and make great house pets.

As for the difference between Norwegian Forest Cats and regular cats, the biggest difference is the price. Wegies are also a lot larger than a typical house cat, and it is going to require a lot more grooming than other long hair cats, because of the double coat.

Conclusion

If you are thinking about investing in a pedigreed kitty, and you want one that is as beautiful as it is affectionate, the Norwegian Forest Cat is definitely an option to consider. These cats are gentle by nature, and ideal to have around children and other pets.

Bengal Cats: The Ultimate Guide to their history, types, characteristics, temperament, and care

How would you like to own a cat that looks like a leopard, but has the personality characteristics of a house cat? If this sounds like something you would like, you need to check out Bengal cats. These cats are a hybrid of domestic cats and Asian leopard cats. They have been developed by numerous breeders, with the most well-known being Jean Sugden Mill, who began her Bengal breeding program in 1963, with the goal of creating a wild-looking cat that had the temperament of a house pet.

Over the years, and with a lot of careful breeding, this goal has been reached. Today’s Bengal cats all descend from the cats bred by Mill in the early 1980’s. The breed was recognized by the International Cat Association in 1991, but is still not recognized by the Cat Fanciers Association.

So, what is a Bengal cat? Well, as mentioned in the opening paragraph, this type of cat is a cross between an Asian leopard cat and a domesticated house cat. It has many of the physical characteristics of the leopard, without the huge size, but the disposition of a lovable house pet. Their coats are sleek and shiny, and they seem to glitter when the light hits them.

Bengal cat colors have two common patterns. The one that is best known is the spotted pattern, and then there is a swirled, marbled pattern. Both of these patterns are often tri-colored, and their markings can be made up of many different shades.

It is the tri-colors that create the “rosettes” on a Bengal. Each spot is outlined with a dark color, so they look like the spots on a jaguar. This is not something found on all Bengal cats. Many have spots that are more leopard-like, with no dark outline.

Bengal Cat History

It is a common misconception for Bengal cats to be mistakenly known to be named after the Bengal tiger. This is actually a myth. There are some brilliant Bengal cat facts which proves that it is named after the Prionailurus bengalensis, which is the Latin name for the Asian leopard cat, which is part of the Bengal at origin. They have the very distinctive, spotted coats that leopard cats are known for, without the wild temperament. The Asian leopard cat is shy and timid by nature, and quite small when compared to other wild cats.

Of course, the temperament of a Bengal cat is also going to depend on the breeder. With any cat breed, it is important that you buy from reputable Bengal cat breeders, and not those that are known as “backyard breeders,” and who sell pets that have health and behavioral issues.

The breed has become so popular and commonplace that there are also many cats that are part Bengal. Even if you do not have a Bengal cat, you may have one that is part Bengal. If you want to know how to tell if your cat is part Bengal, just look for the tell-tale spots.

So, where can you get one of these pets, and how much does a Bengal cat cost? While some cat breeds can cost thousands of dollars, such as the Savannah cat, another spotted hybrid, the Bengal cat price range is on the lower end of the cost scale. You can get a Bengal cat full grown or a kitten from reputable breeders all over North America. The key word here is “reputable.” A good breeder is going to ensure that their cats and kittens are in the best of health, and that there are no genetic defects.

The cost of a Bengal cat will depend on a number of factors, including the generation. You can expect the price of Bengal cats to range anywhere from $400 to $3,000. When buying Bengal cats, remember that older cats cost less, while healthy kittens from first and second generations are at the higher end of the scale (more on generations later in this article).

Bengal Cat Standard

Now it is time to look at all of the things that you should know about the Bengal cat standard before you decide to purchase one of these beautiful cats.

Learn more about Bengal Cats below:

First of all, know that you are making a commitment that is going to last for about 12 to 16 years, which is the average life span of a Bengal cat. First, let’s take a look at how a Bengal cat should appear.

Head

The head should be fairly small, rounded, and slightly wedge-shaped.

Eyes

A Bengal cat’s eyes are large, oval shaped, and somewhat slanted.

Nose

The nose should be large and wide, and slightly puffed.

Muzzle

The muzzle should be full and wide, with prominent whisker pads and high cheekbones.

M

There will be the “M” marking on the forehead that is found on most striped/spotted cats.

Chin

Bengal cats should have strong chins.

Bones

Bengal cats have strong bone structures, and are not delicate.

Neck

Bengal cats have long, muscular necks that are proportionate to the head and body.

Chest

Ideally the cat will have a broad chest.

Torso

A Bengal cat will have a long and substantial torso that is medium in size.

Hind quarters

The hind quarters will be muscular, particularly in males.

Tail

The tail will be thick and even, of medium length, and the tip will be rounded.

Coat

The coat should be short to medium length, dense, soft, and luxurious.

Hind Legs

The hind legs should be longer than the forelegs.

Paws

Bengal cats have big paws with prominent knuckles.

As mentioned, they have a lifespan of about 10 to 15 years or longer. They tend to weigh up to about 15 pounds, but some can be larger. Females tend to weigh 10 to 14 pounds, while males can weigh around 12 to 16 pounds. Bengals are classified as being medium- to large-sized cats, with the average size range being about 13 to 16 inches tall.

One thing you should know about Bengal cats is that they are very curious, and very playful. They are little bundles of energy, so they need plenty of exercise to keep them from becoming bored and getting into things that they shouldn’t. These are very athletic cats, and you can even teach them to do a variety of tricks.

Remember, positive reinforcement works best when training any cat. If they know they are going to be rewarded, they will be more likely to do what you want them to do, or at least make you think that is what they are doing.

If you are looking for a pet that is hypoallergenic, good luck. Many people think that Bengal cats are hypoallergenic, but when you come right down to it, there is actually no such thing as a truly hypoallergenic pet. There is going to be some pet dander, fur, and other allergens that bother some people.

But, there are cats that don’t cause as many allergic reactions as others, including the Bengal cat. This is because they have such short fur, but it doesn’t mean that everyone will not experience allergic reactions. There are those who have Bengal cat allergies, which can be caused by Bengal cat shedding. Even though these cats have very short hair, it is still a good idea to groom them regularly, particularly if there is anyone in the home who has a cat allergy.

The Responsibilities of Bengal Cat Ownership

Owning a pet is a real responsibility. It is not something anyone should do on a whim, because if one is not prepared for this responsibility, they are either going to have cat that is not properly cared for, or one that ends up in a shelter. But, since you are obviously considering purchasing an exotic cat breed and spending hundreds of dollars, you are likely already somewhat prepared for a 15-year responsibility.

What do you need when you are bringing home a new Bengal cat? Whether it is a cat or a kitten, you will need pretty much the same items. These will include, but are not limited to:

  • Nutritious cat food (wet and dry)
  • Food and water dishes
  • Litterbox and litter
  • Plenty of toys
  • Cat bed (in time, they will choose their own bed, often yours)
  • Soft blankets
  • Collar, leash, and ID tag if you plan to show or walk your cat

Taking care of your Bengal cat is like taking care of any other cat. Sure, a Bengal is a bit larger, but it is essentially going to be a house pet. Make sure that they have access to food and water at all times, and give them plenty of love and attention. Here are some more tips that will help you to be the best Bengal cat owner you can be.

Spay/neuter

Unless you are buying a Bengal cat with the intent to breed it, make sure that you spay or neuter your pet before it reaches the stage of sexual maturity. This is not just to make sure that they are not able to reproduce.

A male cat will mark its territory by spraying, and it won’t hesitate to do it inside your home. The smell is not something that is easy to get rid of. Neutering will ensure this doesn’t happen. Spaying female cats can prevent a number of health issues, including endometriosis.

Toys

Bengal cats are known to be destructive, because they are so curious and active. So, in order to prevent the destruction of pretty much everything you own, it is a good idea to make sure that your Bengal has plenty of toys to play with. These toys should be out where your cat can see them at all times. That way, they will tend to go to the toys rather than your furniture, shoes, and other items you would rather not be riddled with claw and teeth marks.

Water

It is important to make sure that your Bengal cat has access to fresh water at all times, no matter where you are.

If your cat is going to be strictly an indoor cat, there should be a couple bowls of water around the house so they can get a drink quickly and easily.

Our feline pet are frequent water drinkers. You might even want to consider having a water dish in every room that your cat will be in, so they can always have easy access to their water.

Toilets

Speaking of water, it is probably a good idea to start keeping the toilet lid down. As we mentioned, Bengal cats are curious and inquisitive, and they are highly intelligent. They may decide that they like to watch the water go down the toilet, and figure out how to flush it themselves. So, close the lid, and avoid this little issue in the first place. Also, this will prevent the cat from drinking out of the toilet, which isn’t exactly the cleanest water bowl in the world.

Socialization

When you have Bengal cats as pets, it is important to start socializing them when they are kittens. This is particularly important if you have children, or are planning on having children in the near future. Bengals are great with kids, but they have to be socialized early. Once they are, they will bond with children easily, as much as they would with any adult in the home. Also, they need to be socialized so they don’t form a bond with one person and fear others.

Other Pets

In addition to making sure that you socialize your Bengal cat with people, it should also be introduced to other animals. It is nice to know that your cat is going to be friendly with other cats, as well as dogs and other pets. The earlier you start socializing your pet with other animals, the better. That way, you can bring other pets into the home later on without having too many behavioral issues from your Bengal cat.

Agility training

You might want to consider agility training for your Bengal cat. After all, this is an extremely energetic breed, and this is a great way to help them play off a lot of energy, and you will get to spend some quality bonding time with your pet. Did you know that there are even cat agility tournaments, and one of the most popular breeds in these tournaments is the Bengal cat? This is because they are agile, and very easy to train.

Indoor pets

When it comes to cats, they should be kept as indoor pets in order to avoid a lot of health problems, injuries, and more. There are way too many things that happen to an outdoor cat, from getting into fights to picking up parasites. The only exceptions are if you are taking your cat to shows, walking our cat on a leash, or if you have built a “catio” that allows your pet to enjoy the outdoors without actually being outdoors.

Types of Bengal Cats

While all Bengal cats should be the same shape and size, there are two different patterns, and they can be several different colors. It is important to note that not all colors are recognized by some cat associations, and not all will be qualified to earn championship status. First, let’s take a look at Spotted Bengals. They can have either plain spots or the rosettes, but ideally, at least for breeding and showing purposes, rosettes are the best.

The rosettes can have many different shapes, and the legs and tails on Bengal cats are generally striped. If they have some spotting, it is preferred. It is not uncommon for kittens to be born without rosettes and then start to develop them when they are around eight weeks old. By the time they are about six months old, their patterns are generally pretty clear.

There is also the Marbled Bengal. This Bengal cat has a pattern that is marbled, and horizontal for the most part. It has swirls of colors making up the marbled pattern, and for some reason, a Marbled Bengal kitten’s coat is more clearly defined than that of the Spotted Bengal, and it doesn’t seem to get what is known as the “fuzzies” that the spotted kittens go through. One thing to avoid in a Marbled Bengal is the bulls-eye pattern.

Now let’s take a look at the various Bengal cat colors:

Charcoal Bengal Cat

Also known as a Brown or Black Bengal, the colors on these cats can range from many shades of brown to dark charcoal, and they can even be a rich tan color. While still registered as brown, Bengals with light gold colors are often called Golden Bengals. The spots can be shades of brown to black.

Blue-Eyed Snow Bengals

Also known as Seal Lynx Point Bengals, these are what some people refer to as a Bengal Siamese cat. This cat is usually born a white or ivory color, although there are some cases of marbling at birth, and then the lighter color coming through as they get older. They can be spotted or marbled in shades of brown.

AOC Snow Bengal

A Snow Bengal that doesn’t have blue eyes is called an AOC (Any Other Color) Snow Bengal. There are two types of AOC Snow Bengals: Seal Mink and Seal Sepia. Seal Mink is a mix of the Seal Sepia and Blue-Eyed Snow, with light markings and aqua eyes. A Seal Sepia is a snow with darker markings and brown, hazel, or green eyes.

Silver Bengal

A Silver Bengal has black spots against a pale gray/silver background. They often have pale green eyes, and if they have rosettes, the center of each one is medium grey. There should be no trace of brown in the coat (if there is, the silver coat is considered to be “tarnished”), and the tip of the tail is black.

Blue Bengal

The background color of the Blue Bengal should be off white, and it can have peach colored undertones. The markings should be a bluish shade, and very clear, with the tip of the tail being dark grey. These cats do not yet qualify for championship status with TICA or GCCF, but it is hoped that this will change soon and that they will be given full status.

Chocolate and Cinnamon Bengals

These Bengals are a lot like the Brown or Black Bengal, but there is no black in the coat. It is dark brown on a Chocolate Bengal and medium brown on a Cinnamon Bengal. Chocolates are also called Sorrel, and Cinnamons are often called Tawny. The tips of their tails are medium to chocolate brown.

Maybe you would like to have a Ben gal mix cat. There are many domestic Bengal cats that are a mix of some of these colors. For instance, there are snow silvers, chocolate and cinnamon silvers, and blue silvers. There are chocolate and cinnamon snows. There are even blue snows, lilacs, and fawns.

You can even find Bengals that are a mix of all of the colors, and you get a blue/silver snow. These new colors can be shown at TICA shows under the “new traits” category, but they cannot be entered for championship status. In this instance, the Bengal cat price range will be lower.

Then there are the other mixes. For instance, although it would not be a show quality cat, there are many hybrids, such as a tabby Bengal mix. How can you tell if your cat is part Bengal? It can be difficult to tell if there is any Bengal in a cat, but if you notice those telltale spots, it is a pretty good sign that you may have that mix.

Finally we have the melanistic Bengal cat. This is one that has the appearance of a black panther. They are black, with darker black spots or marbling. You may not be able to see the black on black, but those spots are definitely there.

Bengal Cat Characteristics

Let’s take a look at some of the most common characteristics of Bengal cats.

You can refer to the video below for a short summary about Bengal cats characteristics:

Patterns

First, we’ll talk about their patterns. Bengal cats have two basic patterns: spotted and marbled. A Spotted Bengal can have plain spots or rosettes, with rosettes being the best for breeding and showing. These rosettes are in a variety of shapes. Marbled Bengal cats have a lot of horizontal markings, but it is best to avoid the bulls-eye pattern if you plan on showing or breeding your cat. You will find many different color combinations, and you may even see a long-haired Bengal cat or two.

Temperament

Like any cat, or person for that matter, they are going to have their bad days, and they may not always want you making of them. But, for the most part, Bengals are very affectionate, and they often form deep bonds with their people. This is why it is so important to socialize them with other people while they are kittens, so they will be affectionate with most people instead of fearful because they have only bonded with one person.

Behavior

When it comes to Bengal cat behavior, watch out! These cats have tons of energy, and they aren’t afraid to use it. They can really be a handful, because combined with that energy there is a high level of intelligence. Your Bengal cat is going to want to explore and get into everything, and they are very loud and vocal. If they want something, you are going to know about it.

Activity

Bengal cats need interactive play, so if you are away from the home for long periods of time, it is a good idea to make sure that you have another cat for your Bengal to play with. That way, you won’t have to spend your day worrying about what the Bengal is getting into while you are not at home. These are highly intelligent animals, and if not given the chance to explore and play, they are going to use their intelligence to your disadvantage.

Health

Bengals are healthy cats overall, but you need to make sure that you are buying your cat from an established and reputable breeder who is registered. Sure, you can save a bit of money by going to a backyard breeder, but you could be in for a lot of headaches (and an empty wallet) when the cat ends up having a lot of health problems and needs frequent vet visits and treatments.

There are some health issues that Bengals are at risk for, including heart disease and chronic anemia. But, if you are going through a proper breeder, it is unlikely that you will have to worry about these health problems.

Hypoallergic?

If you or anyone in your home has pet allergies, you may be thinking that a Bengal cat is the best choice, since they are rumored to be hypoallergenic. The truth is, there is no such thing as any pet that is truly hypoallergenic. But, some pets, including Bengal cats, tend to cause fewer allergic reactions in people than other animals. This has a lot to do with the fact that they have shorter coats, so there is less shedding and less dander. Yes, some people will be allergic to a Bengal, but it is a better option to have around most allergy sufferers.

Bengal Cats vs. Savannah Cats

So, you want a spotted cat, but you aren’t sure which breed is the best option for you – the Bengal or the Savannah cat. Let’s take a look at the most significant differences between Savannah cat vs. Bengal cats. One of the most noticeable differences is the size. If you are looking for a cat that is closer in size to a regular house cat, the Bengal is your best choice. Savannah cats grow to be much taller and larger.

Both cats are highly intelligent and playful, and they both have a lot of energy. They are also both very affectionate, and bond closely with their owners. When talking about a Savannah cat compared to a Bengal cat, both are going to make terrific pets. But, if you are in the market for a lap cat, the Bengal is going to be the better option for you.

Bengal Cat Generations

Finally, we are going to discuss the various Bengal cat generations. This breed began with the Asian Leopard Cat (ALC). Bengal cats are almost always bred with other Bengal cats, so their bloodlines remain consistent. The various generations are given names with “F” labels, including F1, F2, and F3. Let’s take a look at the meaning of these labels, and find out which is going to be the best choice for you.

When it comes to the “F” labels, basically, the higher the number, the further away the cat is from the first generation. As we mentioned, it all started with the ALC, so the first Bengal cats are from the F1 generation. An F2 cat is a second generation cat, F3 is a third generation cat, and so on and so on. Confused? Let’s break it down in simpler terms.

For first generation Bengal cats, an ALC was bred with a domestic Bengal mother. If an F1 Bengal mother is bred with a domestic Bengal father, you get an F2 kitten. When a domestic Bengal father is bred with an F2 Bengal mother, an F3 Bengal kitten is the result. An F4 kitten comes from a domestic Bengal father and an F3 Bengal mother. Finally, an F5 Bengal kitten is parented by a domestic Bengal father and an F4 mother.

If you are not going to be showing or breeding your cat, and you don’t want so spend thousands of dollars, an F4 or F5 Bengal cat is going to be a great choice. In fact, because there are so many restrictions regarding hybrid breeding, it is likely that you will end up with an F5 or later.

Conclusion

If you have decided that you want a pedigreed pet, and you love the idea of an animal that looks exotic and like a wild cat, a Bengal cat is a great option for you. These intelligent and lovable cats don’t grow to be as large as Savannah cats, but they have that spotted or marbled coat that gives them the appearance of a wild animal.

Siamese Cats: The Ultimate Guide to their history, types, characteristics, temperament, and care

Many animals play significant roles in history. Take the Siamese cat for example. These cats are thought to have originated in ancient Egypt, and they have a similar body shape to that of Bast, the Egyptian cat goddess. But, this is only a theory, and there is no absolute proof that Siamese cats come from Egypt. What we do know for certain is that Siamese cats are among the oldest cat breeds recorded, and that their ancestors were from Siam, now known as Thailand, and this is where they get their name.

History

Where do Siamese cats come from? Records from Thailand dating back to the 1600’s show that even then people kept Siamese cats as pets, and that they were very much prized. In fact, at the time, the only people who were allowed to own these cats were members of royalty, or noblemen. Siamese cats were a big part of palace and temple life, and were considered to be spirit guardians. When an important person died, one of their cats was chosen to be the recipient that would house the soul.

This cat would be pampered for the rest of its life by the temple priests. Now do you see why cats still act like they deserve to be worshipped? The family of the deceased person would pay for the upkeep and care of the cat, as this was thought to bring them good luck in their own afterlife. There are also stories of Siamese cats playing the part of “watch cats,” and they would let the priests know if they heard strangers in the vicinity.

Throughout the centuries, there have been many tales that included Siamese cats among the main characters, and there are tons of Siamese cat legends, including the story about how the Siamese cat got its crossed eyes and kinked tail.

No one is quite sure how Siamese cats arrived in the West. The best records lead to the late 1870’s to the early 1880’s, when a pair were brought from Thailand to England by Sir Edward Blencowe Gould, the then consul-general in Bangkok. It is said that a member of the Thai royal family, possibly even the king, gave him this pair of cats, which he then gave to his sister, Lilian Veley. Pho and Mia, as these cats were called, were shown in the mid 1880’s at the Crystal Palace Exhibition, a cat show.

One of the earliest Siamese cats in the US came to the country in 1879. It was a female named Siam, and a gift to President Rutherford B. Hayes, and the first of many Siamese cats to live in the White House. She was a Seal-Point Siamese cat, and had to endure a two-month trip from Thailand to the United States. Everyone who knew her loved her, but sadly, she became sick just nine months after arriving in the US, and even the country’s best veterinarian could not save her.

Here are a few more historical and interesting Siamese cat facts:

  • When first shown in England, Siamese cats were described as “an unnatural nightmare kind of cat”
  • The name Siamese actually means “moon diamond”
  • The Siamese cat is one of the most popular cat breeds in the world

Queen Elizabeth II was given a Seal Point Siamese kitten as a wedding present

How to Care for a Siamese Cat

Caring for a Siamese cat is much like caring for any other short haired cat, with a few exceptions. For instance, these cats don’t really need to be brushed, because their coats are so short. They have open ears and nostrils that are easy to clean with a soft, damp cloth. It is important that you maintain good dental health for your Siamese cat, as well as for any other pets in the home. In addition to these basics, there are other things that you need to do in order to keep your Siamese cat healthy and happy.

Proper diet

It is important to make sure that you are feeding your Siamese cat a healthy, nutritionally balanced diet. The best diet is one that comes from whole foods, and you can make your own cat food that is healthier than anything that comes out of a can. It is a good idea to talk to your veterinarian or breeder about the best foods for your Siamese cat.

Lots of water

Your cat should have access to fresh water at all times. It is a good idea to keep a water dish in every room that the cat frequents, so there is always fresh water available to her. These are active cats, and they are going to get thirsty frequently. Also, they need plenty of water to maintain good kidney health.

Spay/neuter

One of the most important things you can do for your cat is to have it spayed or neutered. It is important for both pure-breed Siamese cats that aren’t to be bred, and for any other pets you have in the home. This is going to keep them from accidentally reproducing, males won’t spray around the house, and females won’t end up with certain health issues.

Socialization

Siamese cats have a reputation of being nasty with anyone but their owners. Yes, they are extremely loyal pets, but they can also be very loving with other people if they are properly socialized. It is important to start socializing Siamese cats with other people when they are very young, so they are used to having strangers around.

Pet interaction

Siamese cats don’t always get along with other pets, but this isn’t usually a problem if you introduce them to the other pets when they are young. In fact, the younger the better. If you want another cat or a dog, it is a good idea to get it at the same time that you get the Siamese cat, so they can grow up together.

Agility training

These Siamese cats are agile, and they are loaded with energy. They are also highly intelligent, so it only stands to reason that they would excel with agility training. Not only is this a great way to teach them basic commands, it is also going to give them the exercise they need so they stay slim and healthy.

Keep them indoors

Unless you plan on taking your cats out for shows, it is best to keep them strictly indoors. This way, they do not risk all of the bad things that can happen to outdoor cats, from being hit by cars to fighting with other animals to picking up diseases and parasites. An indoor cat is a happy, safe, and healthy cat.

Where to Get a Siamese Cat

If you want to make sure that you are getting a Siamese cat that is healthy and comes from a good bloodline, the best thing to do is to talk to Siamese cat breeders.

Start by looking up Siamese cats for sale, and see if there are any reputable breeders in your area. You may have to broaden your search if there are no breeders close by, but in the end, it will be worth it when you have that beautiful cat in your home. 

There are a number of things that you will want to ask the various breeders, including if they are truly selling pure breed Siamese cats, how much Siamese cats worth, and how much do Siamese cats cost.

Learn more about some facts regarding Siamese Cats in the video below:

You might also get lucky and find a Siamese or a Siamese cross at your local animal shelter. Sadly, thousands of cats are dropped off at shelters all across the US every day, and this includes pedigreed cats that are no longer wanted for one reason or another. By adopting a Siamese cat from a shelter, you are giving a once-unwanted cat a second chance to have a healthy, happy, and long life with a family that loves them very much.

Siamese Cat Standards

When showing a Siamese cat, or any pedigreed cat, there are certain standards that must be met for the cat to qualify for championship status. Let’s take a look at the standards for the Siamese cat.

First, there is the general type standard. The cat should be balanced with the head, ears, neck, body, legs, feet, and tail all in proportion. Their heads should be wedge-shaped, not round or pointed.

They should have clear, blue eyes and an alert and intelligent expression. There should be some width between the ears, and then narrowing to the fine muzzle and a straight profile. They should have a strong chin with a level bite, and a long and elegant neck.

Other standards looked for include:

Ears

The ears should be large and pricked. They are wide at the base, and pointed at the top, and should be balanced triangles.

Eyes

The eyes should be Oriental shaped, slanting at the nose, with some width between them. The eyes should not be deep set.

Body

The body should be a medium size, and it should be long and slim. A Siamese cat’s legs should be slim in proportion to the body, with the hind legs a bit higher than the front legs. Their feet should be small, and oval shaped.

Tail

The tail should be long, slim, and tapered. There should be no kink in the tail.

Points

The mask, feet, ears, and tail should have dark and defined color, and the color of all of the points should match.

Coat

A Siamese cat’s coat should be extremely short. It has a fine texture, and is glossy looking, lying close to the skin.

Colors

The colors will depend on the color standards for the particular type of Siamese cat, and judges will look for dark shading on the sides and back. The bib, belly, and chest should be pale.

Now that you know the standards for a Siamese cat, here are a few more things we think you should know about these lovely cats, including how big do Siamese cats get.

Lifespan

A Siamese cat life expectancy is into the late teens, and it is not uncommon for some. In addition to the average lifespan of a Siamese cat, some can live into their 20’s. Obviously, this is not a normal Siamese cat lifespan, but it does happen.

Height

Siamese cats can grow to be about 12 to 15 inches tall. They are long and lean, and are usually medium size cats.

Weight

Most Siamese cats are slim, and have an average weight of around eight to 12 pounds (females weighing around eight pounds and males weighing around 12 pounds).

Size

These are medium sized cats, and will not grow to be as large as other pedigreed cats.

Intelligence

Because Siamese cats are highly intelligent, they have a penchant for mischief, and you need to find other ways to keep them active.

Grooming

Siamese cats are easy to groom. They do not need to be brushed often, just once a week or so to get rid of any loose fur. They do need dental care, and you should brush their teeth at least once weekly and the occasional grooming and cat bath it needs.

Energy

As mentioned above, Siamese cats are full of energy. They can leap onto very tall surfaces, and they can get into plenty of mischief. Make sure that you have plenty of toys around for them to play with.

Siamese Cat Health Issues

Unfortunately, because they are a pedigreed breed, Siamese cats are often prone to more health issues than other cats. For instance, they can develop respiratory problems, especially when they are young. Some of these problems include coughing, feline asthma, bronchial disease, and lower airway disease. Other health issues to watch out for include:

Heart disease

Siamese cats can develop hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, and there is no cure. But, there are medications that can help to alleviate many of the symptoms. Another heart issue common to Siamese cats is aortic stenosis.

Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA)

This is a problem with blindness that is common in many pedigreed animals that have a small gene pool. Health screening has allowed breeders to reduce the risk of PRA.

Liver disease and pancreatitis

Both of these diseases are common in Siamese cats. Unfortunately, pancreatitis is often fatal, and there are not many things that can be done to treat this disease.

Siamese Cat Cancer

There are some forms of cancer that Siamese cats are very prone to, much more so than other cats. When looking at Siamese kittens, look for a breeder that has no history of cancer in their cats, and whose cats live long and healthy lives.

Siamese cat squints

In the past, many Siamese cats were cross-eyed. This condition is been mostly bred out, but it still happens once in a while. It does not affect a cat’s health, but it makes them look like they are squinting.

All in all, even though Siamese cats are prone to the above conditions, this is generally a healthy breed. You just need to know about the conditions that your cat could develop, and how to make sure that you choose a healthy cat from a reputable breeder.

Are Siamese Cats Hypoallergenic?

Let’s start by saying that there is no animal in the world with fur that is totally hypoallergenic. Even cats with the shortest coats, such as the Siamese cat, will shed, and they have dander, which is what many people are allergic to. But, you don’t have to forego having a cat just because there are allergy sufferers in the home. Many people who are allergic to cats don’t seem to have reactions to Siamese cats, or at least their reactions aren’t nearly as severe as they are when they are near other types of cats with longer fur.

Siamese cats have extremely short coats, and therefore do not shed nearly as much as cats with longer fur. It belongs to some of the short haired cats that don't shed

This means that there is not going to be as much of a cat hair problem in your home, and there is going to be a lot less dander as well. This doesn’t mean that someone isn’t going to have a reaction to a Siamese cat, but the chances of it happening aren’t as likely as with other types of cats.

Grooming a Siamese Cat

Fortunately, there is not a lot of grooming involved when you own a Siamese cat. These cats have very short coats that don’t need much more than to be brushed once a week or so. You may need to bath your cat once in a while, so you might want to start when it is a kitten, so it is used to it and doesn’t try to kill you when it is larger and stronger. Finally, it is important to clean your cat’s teeth regularly. Again, you should start doing this when they are a kitten, so they get used to it. This is a great bonding experience for you and your cat as well, because they are going to learn to really trust you.

Siamese Cat Characteristics

Now we are going to take a look at the characteristics that make up a Siamese cat, from their appearance to their personality. Let’s take a look at the appearance characteristics first.

Ears

The ears should be large and pointed, wide at the base, and balanced triangles.

Eyes

The eyes should be slanted at the nose, and have width between them.

Colors

There are different types of Siamese colorations, but all should have a dark back and sides, and a light belly and chest.

Patterns

The pattern will depend on the type of Siamese cat, but most have similar patterns when it comes to the ears, face, tails, and legs

Now we are going to take a look at other things that you should know about Siamese cats, including more characteristics and how to care for them.

This video below will help you learn about Siamese cat's personality:

Nutrition

Your Siamese cat should have both wet and dry food, and both foods should be nutritionally balanced. If you are unsure about what to feed your pet, talk to your veterinarian or breeder. You may also want to consider feeding your cat a whole food diet that you make yourself, and you will know each ingredient that goes into it.

Temperament

Contrary to popular belief, Siamese cats are not mean or evil. Yes, they can be mischievous, just like any cat, and they do have their moments when their tempers flare, but this is going to happen with any other type of cat. Siamese cats are loving and loyal, and they are great pets to have around children.

Friendliness

Yes, Siamese cats are friendly. In fact, they are likely to follow you from room to room so you are never out of their sight. They love children, and they are usually friendly with anyone who comes into the home. The trick is to socialize them with a lot of different people while they are still kittens.

Other pets

Introducing pets is never an easy task, but it can be done, and it is no different with a Siamese cat. Just like socializing them with people, it is best to introduce your Siamese cat to other pets while they are still young. There have been many Siamese cats that have made dogs their best friends.

Attention

Siamese cats need a lot of attention, and they are not shy about letting you know it. They will cry and howl until you give them the attention that they crave, and if you stop, they will ask for more. If you are working a lot, it is a good idea to make sure that you have another pet to keep your Siamese cat company while you are not at home.

Adaptability

Most cats do not care for change, and this is no different with the Siamese cat. If you are going to be moving, or making other changes to your home and lifestyle, it has to be done slowly so your cat will get used to the changes.

Why are Siamese Cats so Vocal?

Siamese cats are well known for their vocal abilities. These are loud cats, and they are not afraid to “talk” to their owners in very loud tones. They have deep vocal tones, and are also known to use body language to communicate with humans. So, why are these cats so vocal anyway? There are actually several reasons for this, including:

For no reason at all

Siamese cats seem to like the sound of their own voices, and will meow for no reason other than to just be heard.

For attention

When a Siamese cat wants attention, they will let you know about it in no uncertain terms.

For food

When your Siamese cat is hungry, they are going to cry out to let you know that their dish is empty and that you need to fill it, now.

For help

If your cat is sick or injured, they are likely going to cry out to let you know. If this happens, contact your veterinarian for immediate diagnosis and treatment.

Siamese Cat Colors

There are four different colorations for Siamese cats: Seal Point, Chocolate Point, Lilac Point, and Blue Point.

Seal Point

This Siamese cat has a fawn colored body with dark markings.

Chocolate Point

This cat has  cream colored body with chocolate colored markings.

Lilac Point

These cats have pinkish/grey markings with a white body.

Blue Point

This type of Siamese cat has a white body with grey markings and a hint of blue

When it comes to Siamese cat names, you might want to choose something that goes along with its coloration.

Different Types of Siamese Cats

There are many different types of Siamese cats, and all of them are absolutely beautiful to look at (not to mention great pets and loveable companions). Let’s go into greater detail about the various types of Siamese cats.

Seal Point Siamese Cat

This is what is known as the original color for Siamese cats. They have light colored bodies with dark brown points. They are lighter as kittens, and darken as they get older.

Chocolate Point Siamese Cat

This type of Siamese cat has more white than others, but the points are extremely dark, like dark chocolate. They are lighter as kittens, and darken as they get older.

Blue Point Siamese Cat

These cats are related to the Seal Point, and have deep grey bodies with a hint of blue, and silvery points.

Lilac Point Siamese Cat

These cats also have some Russian Blue in their genetics, and are the palest of all Siamese cats. They have a pinkish-grey coloration from the ears to the paws, and the eyes are pale blue.

Lynx Point Siamese Cat

These cats are also known as Tabby Points, and are related to the wild lynx, with stripes, and also referred to as a Siamese Lynx Cat. How much are Lynx Point Siamese Cats worth? They can cost hundreds of dollars. Are Lynx Point Siamese cats rare? Not particularly.

Flame Point Siamese Cat

These cats have a reddish-gold point, and they have pale blue eyes. Their coats are creamy white. Are Flame Point Siamese cats rare? No more so than other Siamese cats. The Flame Point Siamese personality is just like that of any other Siamese cat.

Tortie Point Siamese Cat

This type of Siamese cat has a coat that is much like that of a tortoise shell in color. They have spotted faces that can be a combination of blue, seal or caramel colors.

Applehead Siamese Cat

This is considered to be the traditional Siamese cat. It is heavier than other varieties, and has a rounder head with rounded eyes.

Wedgehead Siamese Cat

This type of Siamese cat has the look of the modern Siamese cat, with an angular head. When it comes to Applehead vs. Wedgehead, it is all a matter of preference for the pet owner.

You can also find Siamese cat mixed breeds. Within these Siamese cat types you will find black Siamese cats, white Siamese cats, and even fluffy Siamese cats.

The Cost to Buy a Siamese Cat

The initial cost to buy a Siamese cat depends on a number of factors, including where you located, if the cat or kitten is show quality, genetic lines, and the individual breeder. You can expect to pay anywhere from $400 to $700 for a Siamese cat, but the price can be higher if it has won certain awards, has great genetics, etc. For instance, the Lynx Point Siamese cat price could be high because they are rarer than a Chocolate Point.

There are also going to be extra costs involved in buying a Siamese cat. For instance, if the cat or kitten must be shipped from out of state, you can expect to spend an additional $200 to $400. If you are going through an adoption center, there is going to be an additional application fee on top of the adoption fee, which is usually $10 or higher.

Don’t forget about the recurring expenses of owning a Siamese cat, or any other cat for that matter. These costs can include, but are not limited to, ongoing veterinary care, food, cat litter, cat toys, and other cat accessories. Your monthly cat budget should be a minimum of $30 to $50. If you are going to own a pedigreed cat such as a Siamese cat, you may also want to consider purchasing pet insurance. Yes, this is going to be another monthly expense, but it is a lot less expensive than a lot of veterinary bills should your cat become sick.

Conclusion

There are few cats that are as loyal and loving as the Siamese. Don’t listen to the stories about these cats being temperamental and hateful. Sure, they have their moments, but what cat doesn’t? Just because you saw the bad Siamese cats in “Lady and the Tramp,” you don’t have to worry about your Siamese cat constantly getting into trouble as long as you give them plenty of love and attention. They will also need ways to work off excess energy, so playtime is going to be loads of fun.

Savannah Cat: The Ultimate Guide to their history, types, characteristics, temperament, and care

Savannah cats made their first appearance in the 1980s, and were bred to look like spotted wild cats, even though they are meant to be house pets. They have the appearance of a cheetah, with coats that have black spots, huge ears, and extremely long legs.

When it comes to the size of a Savannah cat, they are obviously much larger than a typical house cat. In fact, their legs are so long that since 2006, they have held the Guinness record for being the world’s tallest domestic cat. So, what is a Savannah cat? The Savannah cat is a domestic breed that can be distinguished by their large, dark eyes that are highlighted by dark tear marks. They also have vibrant coats.

Where Do Savannah Cats Come From?

There is no actual place that these cats are from. In fact, the very first Savannah cat was the result of an unplanned pairing in the early 1980’s by a breeder of Bengal cats in the United States. In the 1990s, the first Savannah cats were bred. The first of these cats was what is known as an F1 Savannah cat, and although it may have been a mistake, it was the beginning of something very beautiful and unique.

What Does the Name Savannah Mean?

A lot of people think that Savannah cats are named for a specific geographical location. Actually, the origin of the name is much simpler than many would realize. The very first of these cats was, as noted in the previous paragraph, a first generation or F1 female, and her name was, “Savannah.” The breeder used this name as the name of the entire breed.

This first Savannah cat could have been named for the area that its ancestor hails from. The Savannah cat is a distant relative of the African Serval cat. This particular cat hails from the East African Savannahs, so it is likely that the first breeder of these cats chose this name for the first female, and for the breed itself.

Are Savannah Cats Hypoallergenic?

If you are looking for a pet that is hypoallergenic, the Savannah cat is not it. While it is rumored that they are hypoallergenic pets, there are in fact no cat breeds that are truly hypoallergenic. Then again, hypoallergenic doesn’t mean that something does not cause allergic reactions at all. It simply means that there may have few or possibly no allergens. There is no guarantee that someone will not experience an allergic reaction to a Savannah cat, or to any other type of cat, even if the breeder says that it is hypoallergenic.

But, there are some cats that have fewer allergens than others, and that those who have pet allergies are better able to tolerate. If you would like to have a cat and there are others in your home who have allergies to cat hair, dander, etc., then you may want to consider getting a Savannah cat. The reason why Savannah cats are often better for those who have allergies is because they have shorter coats than many other beautiful and magnificent cat breeds. Most reputable breeders will not try to tell you that they are selling hypoallergenic animals, because they know this to not be the case.

Serval vs Savannah Cat

Serval cats and Savannah cats are two distinctly separate breeds, although the Savannah cat is a cross between a serval and a domestic cat. 

Understand the difference of the two breeds, serval vs savannah cat, on the short video below: 

These two types of cats look very much alike, but there is one significant difference, and that is that serval cats are wild, and Savannah cats are domesticated.

First, let’s answer the most important question: What is a serval cat?

A serval cat is a cat that some people have domesticated, but it is still considered to be a wild animal. This is a cat that is native to the African grasslands south of the Sahara. It has the longest legs and largest ears of any of its feline relatives. Serval cats, according to the San Diego zoo, are considered to be endangered species.

Historically, serval cats have been well documented. The serval was a symbol for the Tomasi family of Italy. It was also worshipped by the ancient Egyptians for its power, grace, and agility. Owning one of these cats can be extremely risky, because as already stated, they are wild animals. They are not meant to be house pets.

Savannah cats, on the other hand, make ideal house pets, because they were bred for that reason. Yes, they are a cross between the serval and a domestic cat, but they do not have the wild traits of the serval cat. For one thing, they can easily be trained to use a litter box, just like any other house cat. Serval cats, on the other hand, aren’t so easy to train. Even those that are trained will still do their business in other areas besides their litter boxes.

A Savannah cat can easily adapt to many situations, whereas serval cats do not like change. Oddly enough, Savannah cats are much more independent than serval cats, and do not need as much attention. But, they are friendly and loving, and are a much better option if you are looking for a house pet.

Buying a Savannah Cat

When buying a Savannah cat, there are many questions that you will need to consider, including the cost to buy one of these cats from a breeder. So, the first thing to do is to find a breeder, and you will want to know not only about where to buy a Savannah cat, but also the following:

  • How much does a Savannah cat cost?
  • How much are Savannah kittens?

You should also think about more than just the Savannah cat price. For instance, how much does it cost to have a cat in general? Consider food, vet care, toys, and other expenses that go along with being a pet owner in addition to the actual cost of a Savannah cat.

So, how much is a Savannah cat? It actually depends on a number of factors, including the coloration and other characteristics of the cat, as well as the breeder. The price of a Savannah cat can range from $1,200 to $22,000, depending on the generation. F1 Savannah cats do not produce often, so their babies are the most desirable, and this is the Savannah cat cost that is the highest.

When buying a Savannah cat, one of the most important things to look for is that they meet the breed standards. If you are going to buy a Savannah cat, the ideal to look for is one that has the wild look of a wild cat, but the docile temperament of a house pet. If you see a Savannah cat for sale that looks more like a Bengal cat, chances are that it comes from a poor bloodline.

Owning a Savannah Cat

Owning any type of pet is a huge responsibility, and it is no different with a Savannah cat. In fact, due to the simple fact that this is the tallest house cat in the world, you may find yourself with a lot more to do in the way of caring for your Savannah cat.

Obviously, you are going to need to cat-proof your home, and things that you may think are out of reach will have to be put even higher. Remember, this is not your typical small house cat. In fact, it is likely going to be at least two to three times the size of a large house cat, and can weigh as much as 25 pounds.

These cats need medium to high levels of exercise, as they tend to have a lot of energy. Their exercise should include socialization as they are kittens, so make sure that they are exposed to friendly people and animals, and always offer positive reinforcement. They are highly intelligent animals, and naturally curious, so they can get into a lot of mischief. They are best suited with owners who are active and will give them the time and attention they need.

Savannah Cat Characteristics

Now that we have introduced you to the Savannah cat, we are going to go into more detail about these cats, including their characteristics. Let’s start with the colors. Savannah cats can be found in four main color groups:

  • Brown
  • Silver
  • Black
  • Smoke

While these are the main colors, any colors that are like those of the African Serval cat are acceptable.

For fast tips about the characteristics and some of the important health considerations of Savannah cats, check the video below: 

As for the pattern, you will see dark spots that are round or oval in shape, and solid in color. Ideally, these spots will not be connected. There will also be parallel stripes going from the back of the head to just above the shoulder blades, and they will spread out across the back a bit. Some Savannah cats also have smaller spots on their legs, feet, and even on their faces. They have coats of dense hair that is short and coarse.

Eyes

Now we take a look at the eyes. They should be medium in size, and be deep set with a brow that is somewhat hooded. The shape of the top of the eye is not unlike that of a boomerang, with an angle that brings the corner of the eye down the nose line. The bottom part of the eye is almond-shaped. The eyes sit low on the forehead. They can have any eye color that other cats have, no matter the color of their coats.

Ears

The ears of the Savannah cat should look a lot like the ears of a serval cat. The serval cat has the largest ears of any cat, wild or domesticated, and they are also the largest in relation to their head size. So, because they are related to serval cats, Savannah cats have large ears that sit high on their heads. Their ears are wide, and the base is deep, with rounded tips.

The inside of the base sits near the top of the head, while the outside base should start no lower than the eyes (higher is okay). The inside base of the ears is near the top of the head, and ideally there will be vertical, parallel lines that go from the inner corners of the eyes to the inner ear base. The more pronounced the ocelli ear markings, the better.

Head shape

A Savannah cat’s head should be broad, and look like a wedge that has rounded edges and contours. It should be longer than its width, with a long nose and small chin. If you were looking at the anterior view, the face should show a triangular shape that is very symmetrical. While most spotted cats, as well as tabbies, have the well-known “M” marking between their eyes, it is preferred that Savannah cats have an “11” marking. But, this is not the breed standard; it is just preferred.

Temperament

These cats do need a lot of social interaction, and they will sulk if they are not included in the action. They are very kitten-like, no matter how old they are, and they are very loyal to their people. The Savannah cat temperament can make them wary of strangers, but they do make awesome companions.

Intelligence

Cats are highly intelligent creatures to begin with, and Savannah cats are no exception. They are easy to litter box train, and they can even be trained to understand and obey (sometimes, they are cats after all) commands ranging from simple to complex. They can be leash trained, and it looks pretty cool to see someone walking around town with what looks to be an exotic animal on a leash.

Nutrition

When it comes to nutrition, cats are cats. Savannah cats basically require the same nutrients as any other breed of cat. The biggest difference is that because they are so large, they do require a lot more food than the average house cat. Some are under the misconception that Savannah cats require a raw meat diet. While this is healthy for them (containing the most nutrients), it is not necessary. If you are considering buying a Savannah cat, you might want to talk to your vet about the best type of diet to feed it through all of the stages of its life. Obviously, they require fresh water to be available to them at all times.

Exercise

It is never a good idea to let any pet become overweight, and this is also true of the Savannah cat. While they do look lean and muscular, if they are not given enough opportunities for play and exercise, they can start to become overweight. They need a lot of exercise, and many people actually get them cat wheels so their pets can go for a run whenever they feel like it.

It is important that as kittens, their exercise includes socialization. This way, they do not have as much of a tendency to be wary of strangers later in life. If these cats do not get enough exercise, they tend to become bored, and this is when they start to become mischievous.

Health Issues

Savannah cats are not known to have any specific health issues that are related to the breed. But, it is important that genetic testing is done, to ensure that there are no breed-specific health issues that develop. One common problem is that reproduction and fertility are difficult for Savannah cats, and the cause of their infertility is often genetics. These cats have longer gestation periods than regular cats, making reproduction more difficult.

Other than reproduction issues, this breed is not known to have a lot of health issues. That being said, they can end up with any number of health problems that other cats can have, including the following:

Congenital health issues

All cats are prone to congenital health issues, although many of these issues do not cause any decline in the quality of a cat’s life. These defects can begin in the developmental stages of embryo and fetus, but the causes of many of these defects is not known. One theory is that environmental circumstances when a cat is pregnant can come into play here. Some of the most common congenital health issues include:

  • Cleft palate
  • Extra toes (polydactylism)
  • Dwarfism
  • Extra vertebrae
  • Liver shunt
  • Hydrocephalus

Non-congenital Health Issues

There are also non-congenital health issues that can be common to all breeds of cats, and these are not caused by genetics. In most cases, these health issues can include bacterial, viral and fungal infections.

Bacterial infections
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Coccidia
  • G-strep
  • Giardia
  • Campylobacteriosis
Viral infections

Upper respiratory infection (URI)

Fungal infections

Ringworm

If you think that your Savannah cat, or any of your pets is sick and that it may be any of these conditions mentioned here, it is important to contact your vet so they can diagnose and treat the problem before it becomes too serious.

Other Health Issues

In addition to congenital and non-congenital health issues, there are many other problems that can plague your kitties, including Savannah cats.

Diarrhea

Diarrhea is a condition that can be caused by numerous things, and it is not uncommon to see it in Savannah cats and all other types of cats. Often, it can be caused simply by making a change to your cat’s diet. A bit of diarrhea is nothing to be alarmed about. But, if you notice excessive diarrhea, lethargy, dehydration, blood in the stool, fever, vomiting, and other symptoms, contact your vet for immediate treatment as it could be a sign that something more serious is going on.

Parasites

Tritrichomonas

This is shed in the feces, and adult cats can be carriers, even if they are not showing signs. Symptoms include loose stool, smelly stool, blood or mucus in the stool, or difficult passing stool.

Giardia

This happens when a cat swallows a parasite in the cyst stage. It is highly infectious, and can be transmitted by sniffing cysts from contaminated ground. Symptoms may not appear for several years.

Roundworm

These are the most common parasite found in cats, and extremely common in kittens. They live in the cat’s intestine, and the eggs are passed into the feces, where they can take many days to many weeks to develop into the larval stage, which is infectious.

Hookworms

These slim worms attach themselves to the intestine’s wall lining. They feed on their host’s blood, and are often undetected because they are so tiny. They can live as long as your cat.

Coccidia

This one-celled organism is microscopic, and pretty much all cats become infected with it at some point. They can get this by eating a cyst, or by eating flies and other insects, including cockroaches.

Any cat, including a Savanna cat that has any of these parasites should be treated by a veterinarian.

About the Breed

Savannah cats are among the most beautiful cats in the world. As we mentioned, this breed started as an accident, but was so beautiful that it was eventually created as its own specific breed. There are a variety of colorations and patterns on Savannah cats, and they are nearly as large as their African ancestors, the serval cats. Savannah cats are easy to train, and make terrific house pets. If you want a Savannah house cat, you will be in for an adventure.

While most Savanna cats have very visible spots, there are also black Savannah cats. This Savannah cat breed has color patterns that are similar to black panthers, black with darker black spots, as well as rings on their tails. They always have black noses, and this is a color pattern that is acceptable by TICA standards. These cats can be officially shown, and many are among the most beautiful show-quality cats, shown by many Savannah cat breeders.

Some people think that there is also a variety called the African Savannah cat. Actually, the since the Savannah cat is derived from an African cat, this is why the name is used. There is no actual Savannah cat that is from Africa.

When comparing a Savannah cat to a Bengal cat, you might find that they look a lot alike, but that they have very distinct differences. For instance, Savannah cats are much larger than Bengal cats, which weigh in at around 16 pounds or so. Bengal cats also have an appearance that is very different from that of Savannah cats, including what looks like a sprinkling of gold or silver dust on their coats. While Savannah cats are friendly, Bengal cats are going to be more likely to be snugglers.

Now, let’s look at the Savannah cat compared to a regular cat. Obviously, the first major difference you are going to notice is the size. Most house cats typically weigh about 8-12 pounds, while a Savannah cat can grow to be up to 30 pounds. Cat-proofing your home is going to be a lot different for a Savannah cat than a regular house cat, because of their size. They are able to get into a lot more areas, and can cause a lot more damage. They also cost a lot more to care for, at least when it comes to feeding and filling the litter pan.

Savannah Cat Generations

Here is the most confusing thing about Savannah cats: understanding the generations, which are F1 to F6. Let’s take a look at what the various letters and numbers mean.

“F” stands for Filial generation, which is how many generations removed a cat is from its original ancestry. For instance, an F1 Savannah cat would be a first generation offspring, with a Serval parent (usually the father) and a domestic cat, so you should know this if you see an F1 Savanna cat for sale.

An F1 Savannah price is going to be the most expensive, often more than $20,000, because when it comes to Savannah cats, F1 is the most desirable. A Savannah F1 cat comes from that very first one created, so the Savannah cats F1 price is always higher. The price does not have anything to do with the F1 Savannah cat size.

But to speak in general, Savannah cats are usually expensive and considered to be a rare breed of cat.

An F2 Savannah cat is a second generation offspring, and has a Serval grandparent. It is the closest to an F1, so the F2 Savannah cat price is likely to be high, upwards of $10,000. Again, this has nothing to do with the F2 Savannah cat size. There is little difference between the two generations, with the exception that one is a first generation.

An F3 Savannah cat is a third generation offspring. This means that one of its grandparents was a serval cat. The F3 Savannah cat price is going to be lower than an F2, and the F3 Savannah cat size is going to be slightly smaller than an F1 or F2.

An F4 Savannah cat size is that of the others, but it is farther removed from its African ancestor, with a great grandparent being a serval cat. The F4 Savannah cat price is going to be much lower than that of an F1, and a Savannah cat F4 is still a quality animal. Next we have an F5 Savannah cat. You can see that he prices are coming down, and that the F5 Savannah cat price is even lower than the F4 cat.

Finally we have the F6 Savannah cat. When it comes to cost, the F6 Savannah cat price is going to be the least expensive, and it is even cheaper when compared to an F5 Savannah cat. The F6 Savannah cat size is a bit smaller again. When comparing a Savannah cat F1 vs F5, the biggest difference is the price, followed by the size.

Once you have figured out what the various generations mean, there are other letters that show the generations of Savannah to Savannah breeding. For instance, the letter A represents a cat with one parent that is a Savannah cat, and the other is an outcross. The letter B means that both parents are Savannah’s, one parent is an A, and at least one grandparent from either side is an outcross. The letter C means that both parents are B or above, and at least one of the parents is a B, and one grandparent is an A.

Then, there is SBT, which means Stud Book tradition. This kitten has three generations of Savannah parents, and is considered to be the purest breed of Savannah cat.

Which Generation Should You Choose?

When buying a Savannah cat, does it really matter which generation you choose? Well, it all depends on whether you are looking for a house pet or a show cat. Obviously, an F1 or F2 Savannah cat is going to be the best as a show cat, but they can still be pretty lovable pets.

On the other hand, if you are simply looking for a pet, you may not wish to spend upwards of $20,000 on a cat. So, before choosing a Savannah cat, think long and hard about your reasons, and then decide just how much you are willing to spend. Remember, an F6 Savannah cat is no different from an F1 when it comes to having a loving pet.

Conclusion

If you really want to own an exotic animal, which in most parts of the US is illegal or at least very seriously restricted, your best option is to get a Savannah cat, of any generation. These large cats have the look of a wild animal, but the temperament of a house cat. They can easily be trained to use a litter box, walk on leashes, and follow a number of commands. They are friendly, and because they have short coats, they are often the better choice for allergy sufferers.

What is a Feral Cat?

Unfortunately, not all cats have homes where they are loved and looked after. Sadly, thousands of cats are living on the streets, and they have to fend for themselves. The majority of these cats are terrified of humans, and tend to keep their distance, even from people who are feeding and trying to help them. These are known as feral cats. But what is a feral cat?

They are not socialized, and they often can be found living in colonies. These colonies may contain not only feral cats, but cats that have run away or former pets that have been abandoned. Feral cats and strays are often called “community cats” or “free-roaming cats.”

One thing that many people do not understand is that even though feral cats do not live inside homes and they are outside dwellers, they are not wildlife. They need food from human sources to survive. This can be anything from scraps they find in dumpsters to food left by a kind human who doesn’t want to see the feral cats go hungry.

Contrary to popular belief, these cats do not survive because they have great hunting skills. They need us to provide them with at least some of their sustenance. There are also feral rescue groups that will neuter feral cats and then release them, after tipping their ears for identification (cutting the tip off the ear so you know it is a feral that has been neutered).

What Does Feral Mean?

Many people think that a feral cat is born that way. This is not the case. Being feral is a behavioral characteristic, and has nothing to do with anything biological. For instance, a kitten could be born into a feral colony, but if it is taken indoors while still a kitten and socialized, it can be turned into a friendly and loving cat. Another example of this being behavioral is an adult cat that has become a stray. It may have once been a friendly pet, but experiences and its situation have made it fearful of humans. The level of feral can vary from cat to cat.

There are four factors that determine how feral a cat actually is:

Age

A kitten that is younger than eight weeks old and born to a feral mother can generally be socialized pretty quickly. In fact, with a kitten this young, it may only take a few days before they are enjoying human attention. Keep in mind that the older the kitten, the more difficult it is going to be to socialize them. Once the kitten is four months, it is going to likely have adopted a number of feral characteristics, and they will have these characteristics for life. It can take as long as a year, or even longer, to socialize an adult feral cat.

Feral Generations

Even though this is a behavioral trait, if there are many generations of cats that are feral, each generation is going to be more feral than the last. They are going to get wilder and wilder, and the level of feral is going to increase from generation to generation. With each successive generation, they are going to be more and more feral, until there is likely no way to be able to tame them and turn them into family pets.

Human Contact

As mentioned earlier, feral cats have different levels of feral. Some will run from humans, while others will tolerate some human contact. There are some feral cats that do interact with humans, and they will show a higher level of socialization than other cats that have little to no human contact.

Personality

Like people, each cat has its own unique personality. There are some feral cats that are naturally friendly, and that will allow humans to give them a bit of attention. Then, there are others who will run like lightning at the sight of a human. Feral cats that do allow some human contact are often those that are cared for by rescue groups such as Carma, and they can even be turned into loving pets with a lot of hard work and patience, especially once they have been spayed or neutered.

Taming a Feral Cat

While not all feral cats can be tamed, there are hundreds of success stories from people who have rescued feral cats and turned them into their pets. The thing is, taming a feral cat is not something that is going to happen overnight. You have to work with each cat’s personality, and never try to force them to do anything they do not want to do. For instance, you should never try and force a feral cat to live indoors as a pet, or keep one in a cage. This is just going to cause a lot of emotional distress for the cat, and it is unlikely that it will ever allow human contact.

Here's a short video to help you learn more about feral cats and their difference from stray cats:

You have to take things slow and easy. Start out by leaving food outside for the cat, in the same place every day. Talk to the cat, without trying to approach it at first.

Let the cat get used to your presence, and the sound of your voice. The more the cat gets used to you, the less afraid it is going to be. If you are lucky, over time, the feral cat may start coming to you to be petted and fed, and after a while, you can bring it indoors and give it the home it truly deserves.

Note that you can try to identify what the cat's breed is. It could help you figure out the personality it has, adjust to it and win its trust.

Conclusion

It is sad that every cat in the world can’t have a loving home, and that thousands have to make their own way in this world. But, you can do your part. If there are feral cat care and rescue organizations in your area, ask about volunteering. You can also help by building simple shelters that the cats can use to get out of bad weather. There are instructions online you can use to create shelters out of plastic totes. Any little thing you can do is going to make a huge difference in the lives of the feral cats in your community.

What is a Cheetoh Cat?

Have you ever thought that you would love to have an exotic-looking cat? If so, have you ever heard of a Cheetoh cat? These cats are a cross between an Ocicat and a Bengal, and they have the jungle lineage of the Asian Leopard cat. These cats have a combination of spots and striped markings, and they are extremely friendly and loveable. This type of cat was bred with one purpose in mind: to create a large, exotic looking cat that was highly intelligent, without adding any wild blood to the mix so it is docile, friendly, and safe for all, including children. Keep reading to learn more about the Cheetoh cat.

Is This a Registered Breed?

A Cheetoh cat costs around $800 from a breeder, and yes, this is a registered breed with the United Feline Organization since November 2004. The International Cat Association (TICA) lists this breed as an “experimental breed,” which is the first step in the process of becoming a registered breed with this association. Cheetoh breeders are working towards the goal of this becoming a recognized, registered breed all over the world.

How Big are These Cats?

A Cheetoh cat is actually larger than the breeds it came from, the Bengal cat and Ocicat cat, and these cats can be as large as medium-sized dogs. The male Cheetoh weighs between 15 and 23 pounds, while the females usually weigh around 15 pounds. A lot of people wonder why these cats would be larger than their original parents. It all has to do with genetics, and it is very difficult to explain so the layperson can understand. The Liger is another great example of this. This is a cross between a lion and a tiger, and is often much larger than its parents.

Do All Cheetoh Cats have the Same Markings?

The Cheetoh is a muscular breed that is extremely agile and graceful compared to other breeds of cats, and has that walk that makes it always look like they are stalking something. They all have spotted and striped markings, but this is not to say that they all have the same markings. There are a variety of variations in their colorations, including the following:

Black and Brown Spotted Sienna

These cats can be various shades of rust, including sorrel, tawny, mahogany, and tawny. They have black, brown, and tan markings, with light markings around the eyes. Their whisker pads, chins, chests, bellies, and the insides of their legs will preferably be white. It is also preferable if they have black markings or spots around their eyes and other parts of the face. The nose is generally reddish, and their eyes can be a variety of colors, from gold to green.

Black Spotted Smoke

This version has an overall color that is dark gray, and there are shades of white, black, and gray mixed in. They have very distinct spot patterns, which will appear on the shoulders and down the back, often looking like a cape when they are kittens. Preferably, there will be light or white bars going across the back of the ears, as well as light markings around the eyes. Preferred markings also include black spots around the eyes and on the face. The eyes can be bronze, gold, green or brown, and the paw pads and tip of the tail are black.

Black Spotted Silver

This version has an overall color that is silver, with the gorgeous black stripes, spots, and rosettes. There should be a lot of contrast in the colors, and ideally, there will be black marks or spots on the face, as well as white bars behind their ears. There may even be a frost of gold across their backs and shoulders. Often, the nose is reddish, and has a black outline. The paw pads and tip of the tail are generally black. The eyes can range in color from bronze to copper to green to haze.

Lynx Pointed

This Cheetoh cat has a snow-white body with light grey shading on their backs and rumps. They can also be buff or light gray. This coloration often includes gold or buff colored spots on the body and the belly, and ideally, there will also be spots on the legs. The tail is black and striped with rings. Their faces have gold or buff markings and spots, and their ears are light grey or buff, with a bit of black at the points. Ideally, there will be white lines across the backs of the ears. Their paw pads and tail tips are black, and they have deep, bright blue eyes.

This video tells you additional facts about the Cheetoh cat:

Conclusion

If you are looking for a pet that has a wild and exotic look, but you want a pet that is going to be loving and safe around children, you should consider getting a Cheetoh cat. These cats have lovely dispositions, and even the males show maternal characteristics towards the younger ones. They are rarely hostile, and they don’t antagonize. The Cheetoh cat makes an ideal family pet.

Black kitten: Tuxedo Cats

Guess who is always ready in their tux and ready to party? If you own a tuxedo cat you are privy to a permanently dressed-up feline companion. This adorable cat is one of the most common domestic cats and that’s most likely thanks to their markings.           

What’s The Name All About?

The term ‘tuxedo’ describes the cat’s interesting coat, rather than its breed. Just like the calico cat, they are bi-colored, but in general ‘tuxies’ have white and black fur. Because tuxedo is more of a pattern than opposed to breed, they can either be long- or short-haired, pure or mixed breed.

They are also considered to be a black cat breed but with some white patterns that makes it look like a tuxedo.

The Tuxie Temperament

According to most owners and tuxedo cat lovers, these feline friends have an easy-going temperament and are happy, relaxed and quite dog-like in terms of personality traits. These kitties are born wearing their formal attire and look dashing from the get-go.

It is said however, that the tuxedo cat has superior intelligence. Nothing has yet been proven, but it would sure be interesting if one could determine more about a cat’s personality and intelligence by looking at their coat color. Because genetics decides the length, pattern and color of a cat’s fur, it’s reasonable to think these genetics may also determine other traits.

Tuxedo cats are rather vocal in comparison to most other cat breeds, and are strong and independent in character. They are generally completely comfortable whether they have company around or not; as a result, they can sometimes wind up getting into trouble, but always find a way to be home just in time for a meal.

Lifespan

Should your tuxedo cat be kept indoors, they have a greater likelihood of living longer than their brothers and sisters who freely roams outdoors. Providing that you ensure your feline friend receives great care, feed them cat foods that are healthy, keep them at a healthy weight and take them for regular vet visits, your cat can have the potential to live up to 15 years of age and sometimes beyond.  Most tuxedo cats won’t surpass the 20-year mark.

Allowing your cat outside doesn’t necessarily have a negative impact on your kitty’s lifespan, but be sure to keep an eye on them while they're outside, especially if you're having weather that is very cold or very hot.

A great way of keeping a limit on your cat’s outdoor time is to install a cat flap that allows them to access the outdoors only when you want them to.

Famous Tuxedo Cats

Most notably, Socks lived with President Clinton along and his family in the White House. Socks was the inspiration behind a few children’s books and has even been even featured in a TV sitcom and a comic strip.

The famously mischievous feline in the Dr. Seuss classis, the Cat in the Hat, was also a tuxedo. Several cartoon cats were tuxedos too: Sylvester of Looney Tunes and Felix the Cat graced our TV screens with their usual cuteness.

In 2012, a cat called Stan ran for the office of mayor in Halifax, Canada. Tuxedo Stan’s political stance brought attention to the problem of stray cats in the area and promised voters a city-sponsored neuter/spray program if he were to be elected.

It is said that Sir Isaac Newton, Beethoven and Shakespeare had tuxedo cats and there is one such cat named Sparky, that inherited $6.8 million in 1998 when his owner passed away.

Fun Tuxedo Facts

Tuxedo cats are the most talented domestic cat swimmers. Most cats hate water, but when placed in this almost unfortunate situation, these kitties have the athletic ability and strong back legs that make them excellent swimmers.

These friendly cats are extremely intelligent. While there haven't been any studies to clarify how and why they are superior in that aspect, the experiences of their owners gives us more than enough data.

Should you be faced with a mouse problem in or around your house, you simply can’t fail with a tuxedo cat. Their stealth and patience allows them to be fantastic mouse catchers. Once they catch wind of a mouse’s presence, they won’t stop the hunt until the creature has been captured.

Here are some more facts about tuxedo cats:

Many cats show minimal interest in greeting their owners when they come home and often prefer to remain in snooze mode until they catch the sound of that famous sound of kibbles hitting the bottom of their bowl.  This is not the case for tuxedo cats. They are right inside your door once any small sound indicates that their human is home. Because of this, they are often seen as being rather dog like.

This list won’t be complete without mentioning their photogenic looks. Those striking eyes and bold contrasting fur patterns makes for an awesome Instagram post. Caption it well and expect those likes to come pouring in. Be sure not to pose with your cat if your ego can’t handle not being the center of attention.