The Chausie are rumoured to have been around for many centuries; the first Chausie could have well come into existence during ancient Egypt around the Nile Delta. In 1960s and 1970s, breeding experiments were initiated between nondomestic cats (F. Chaus) with domestic cats (F. Catus) to provide a viable alternative to nondomestic cats as pets. The breed was named Chausie in 1990s, when a group of breeders developed a planned breeding programme and goals. While only outcrosses with Abyssinian and domestic shorthair are officially permissible, any purely domestic outcross can be utilised. The breed received registration status from TICA in 1995, and after working its way through the New Breed Class in twelve years from 2001, the Chausie was formally recognised as TICA’s newest Champion Breed in 2013.
The Chausie is a highly active, highly intelligent and extremely athletic cat. Despite this breed’s wilder appearance, Chausie cats tend to be very loyal and extremely affectionate. Playful and curious, it does well in households with older children. The Chausie rates as follows on the behavioural traits:
- Activity level: 3/5 (quite active)
- Intelligence level: 3/5 (quite intelligent)
- Curiosity: 4/5 (very curious)
- Friendliness: 3/5 (quite friendly)
- Vocal: 2/5 (moderately vocal)
While different strain of Chausie might have different characteristics, their nondomestic ancestry is reflected in their long, sleek bodies, medium to large body size, short coat and large, tufted ears. These cats are generally pretty leggy and slender. The major characteristics of these cats are:
- Fur: Solid black, black/brown tickled tabby and black grizzled tabby are the three Chausie colours recognised by TICA, though being a relatively new breed they still be born with a variety of other colours and colour patterns.
- Eyes: Gold or yellow eye colours are preferred; yellower and lighter shades of green are also acceptable.
- Body structure: Medium to large body size; long, sleek, leggy bodies suited for running and jumping.
- Facial features: Prominent, angular cheekbones; long tufted ears flattened on top.
- Weight: Despite their larger size, the Chausie is relatively light. A male Chausie might weigh 9-15 pounds; females usually weigh around 7-10 pounds.
Due to their inquisitive nature, athletic abilities and predatory skills, the Chausie can tend to be destructive. The owners therefore have to be extremely careful, for the cats may end up causing considerable damage to property and themselves. Also proper attention needs to be paid when the Chausie is allowed outdoors, as they have a fearless attitude and may end up in a fight with neighbourhood strays and other pets. The diet has to be extremely selective, as the Chausie may inherit a shorter intestinal tract of its nondomestic ancestors. Vegetables, herbs and spices may trigger chronic intestinal inflammation and lead to chronic inflammatory bowel disease which causes diarrhoea and vomiting. An Endoscopy or a Full Thickness Biopsy (FTB) can diagnose this disease quite easily. High quality commercial cat food with very minimal plant-derived ingredients is recommended; homemade raw or cooked meats can also be used with appropriate supplements.
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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