The Bengali is probably the most famous among all exotic and designer cat breeds. It has a distinguishable wild cat appearance with its slender body, graceful build, and distinctive fur.
Bengali cats love to climb and jump, they are especially active and playful. They need frequent social interaction with their owners
Bengali breed: fun facts
- The beautiful coat of Bengal cats has many background colors; from gold, rust, brown and orange to sand and ivory. Their spots also vary in color and shapes.
- Not all Bengalis have round spots, some have a very curious “marble” look.
- Many Bengali cats like water, they won’t mind you bathing them or even swimming in the pool if they get used to it.
History and origins of the Bengali breed
With its distinctive spotted coat and large size, the Bengal cat looks like a wild cat on the prowl, but although one of its ancestors is the small, wild Asian leopard, the Bengali is a house cat from head to toe .
Bengal cats take their name from the scientific name of the Asian leopard cat, Felis bengalensis. They were created through crosses between an Asian leopard cat, which in the 1950s to 1960s could be purchased at pet stores, and a domestic Shorthair.
Jean Mill, a California breeder, was the first to make such a cross, but she was not trying to create a new breed. She had acquired a leopard cat and raised it alongside a black cat, not expecting that they would mate.
The International Cat Association recognized Bengalis in 1991.
Bengali cat size
This is a big cat. Bengalis usually weigh between 3.5 and 7 kg.
Bengal cats character
The Bengal cat is very active and highly intelligent . This makes it fun to live with, but it can be challenging at times. In general, the Bengali is a confident and friendly cat, but remains alert. Nothing escapes your attention.
He likes to play with other cats and their toys and is a genius at learning new tricks, his agile legs are almost as deft as our hands.
Bored Bengal cats can also adopt some unconventional (and slightly destructive) habits, including: turning switches on and off, taking things out of boxes, playing with electronics.
It has a strange fascination with water, so aquarium and pond fish may not be safe with a Bengali around.
He also loves to climb, and you will often find him in the highest places in your home, those that you thought he would not be able to reach. A cat tree is a must for this feline, as are toys that will challenge his intelligence .
On the rare occasions when you’re not climbing something, your affectionate Bengali will be happy to sit purring on your lap.
Bengali cat health
The Bengali is generally a healthy cat , but the following diseases appear from time to time in the breed:
- Distal neuropathy: a disorder of the nervous system that causes weakness. It can occur in Bengali cats from 1 year of age. Fortunately, many cats recover on their own, although some relapse.
- Flat Chested Kitten Syndrome – A deformity that can range from mild to severe. Kittens that survive to adulthood generally show no signs once they reach maturity.
- Hip dysplasia: which in severe cases can cause lameness.
- Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy: a form of heart disease inheritable in some races.
- Patellar luxation: a hereditary silocation of the patella that can range from mild to severe. Severe cases can be relieved with surgery.
- Progressive retinal atrophy: a degenerative eye disease.
The Bengali and their care
The Bengal cat’s short, thick coat can be easily cared for with weekly combing to remove dead hair and distribute skin oils.
A bath is rarely necessary, but your Bengali kitten will need your teeth brushed (the more often the better) and your nails trimmed once every 3-4 weeks.
Watch his eyes and ears and clean them with a damp cloth if you see that they have dirt or any external agent.
Provide your Bengali kitten with high-quality cat food so they get all the nutrients they need to be strong.
Keep his litter box clean and in good condition, otherwise you will risk him to relieve himself elsewhere in the house.
Bengali cat’s appearance and coat
The Bengali cat is an athlete, agile and elegant with a strong and muscular body, as befits the “little tiger”. Its head is shaped like a modified wedge, longer than it is wide with rounded contours.
At the top of its head you can see medium to small and relatively short ears, oriented towards the sides of the head. The large oval eyes are almost round. It has a long, muscular neck.
Their legs are of medium length, the back ones a little longer than the front ones, with large and round claws. It has a thick, medium length tail that melts to black at the end.
Another remarkable feature of Bengali cats is their spotted belly.
The little leopard
The Bengal cat has short, thick hair that feels luxuriously soft and silky . It can have various colors and different patterns, including brown brindle, orange brindle, white brindle, and silver brindle.
A dark circle with a cat-colored center is the most common appearance of Bengali spots. The contrast between the spots and the background color is emphasized, the edges are well defined and sharp to differentiate this spectacular cat.
The coat can be seen randomly or in horizontal patterns, or it can be marbled in style. In the marble pattern, the markings are derived from the classic brindle gene, but the overall appearance is random, giving the resemblance to marble.
Flares often have a “glow gene” that gives their skin an iridescent sheen, as if it were covered in warm frost. Three recessive coat variations have developed: snow leopard, marbled, and snow veined. These guys are still pretty rare.
Bengali cat with children or other pets
The Bengali cat is a social cat , it is a perfect option for families with children and other pets.
He loves to play with children for hours, and will not hesitate to befriend dogs if they do not give him trouble.
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