This classic domestic mix was not produced because someone intended to but purely co-incidentally. Jean Mill of California is a breeder herself but her purpose in this case was different. She had acquired a leopard cat and left it with a black tom cat thinking that the two cats were good company to each other. Only to her surprise, the two breeds mated giving rise to an offspring which later came to be known as Bengal. Bengals are one of the most intelligent cat breeds today and this is one such breed which can be trained in a whisker. They gained complete championship status eight years later in 1991, after they were granted an experimental status in 1983 by The International Cat Association (TICA).
After around three generations from their original crossing, these cats have generally acquired a gentle domestic breed temperament. Yet, for a usual pet owner, these cats should be minimum four generations removed from the original crossing. These cats are highly energetic and playful.
- Activity Level: 5/5(fanatically playful)
- Intelligence Level: 5/5(brainy and wild)
- Curiosity: 4/5(highly curious)
- Friendliness: 5/5(highly amicable)
- Vocal: 3/5(moody vocal)
These cats boast a “wild” look with rosettes, large spots and a light and white belly. They have a sharp body structure that reminds one of the ALC. The cat’s rosette spots appear only on their sides and back with stripes on other parts. They usually also have a “mascara” and forelong striping on the eyes.
- Fur: They have a plush short and thick coat which comes in a variety of colors and patterns. The colors include brown tabby, black silver tabby, seal mint tabby and seal silver lynx point.
- Eyes: The Bengal has large oval eyes. The eye color varies from green, gold and copper. The traditional brown Bengal has either green or gold eyes.
- Body Structure: These cats have a large muscular body structure with paws as good as hands. A modified wedge shaped head which is broad and long than it is wide. The medium length muscular legs are a good support to the body. The tail is thick and medium sized.
- Facial Features: The Bengal has sharp features, be its medium sized short ears, the oval large eyes and the muscularly agile neck.
- Weight: This is a large cat which weighs about 8 to 15 pounds.
The Bengal is a breed which is generally quite healthy and active but it also faces few genetic diseases. The two most common diseases which the Bengal is prone to, are liver diseases associated to anorexia and distal neuropathy, which is a nervous system disorder. Fortunately, these cats recover from the nervous system disorder on their own but for liver disease, an ALT (Alanine Aminotransferase) diagnostic test is recommended.
This voracious hunter should be kept indoors to protect the birds and other animals outside. Weekly brushing of the coat is enough and daily dental hygiene is a must. Rest, the Bengal is capable enough of taking care of its own!
We have gathered this information from our breeders based on their experience with this breed. However, remember that each animal is different with its own personality and needs (just like people!), so use this information wisely.
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