Bengal cat, Bengal – a hybrid of domestic (Felis silvestris catus) and wild Bengal cat (Prionailurus bengalensis).
The history of the emergence of the Bengal cat deserves special attention, and is very closely connected with the personality of the American geneticist biologist Jean Mill (Sugden). Gene was engaged in breeding cats and breeding new breeds, studied the genetic diversity and the possibility of increasing intraspecific diversity for these animals. In 1961, Jean Mill went on a business trip to Bangkok. Wild cats of F. Bengalensis, similar in size to domestic ones, lived in this region of Asia. At that time, this species was on the verge of extinction due to poaching: adult animals were exterminated because of the value and beauty of their skins, and small kittens were sold to tourists in the local market as live souvenirs. Jean bought a kitten and brought it home to the USA, giving it the name Malaysia. And although Malaysia remained an absolutely wild animal, it was she who inspired Gene to create a completely new breed of cats in the future. In the course of the experiments, a gradual crossing of wild cats and cats (including wild Bengal cats from India) with domestic cats and cats of different breeds, including Burma and Mau, was made. Finally, after almost a decade of breeding work and a large number of interspecific and interbreed matings, Jin succeeded in breeding a completely new breed with the character of a domestic cat and the appearance of a wild graceful predator.
Today, almost all felinological associations have recognized the Bengal breed, and Bengal kennels are spread all over the world.
Dimensions, weight. Appearance
The weight of Bengal cats varies from 4 to 7 kg (on average 5-6 kg).
Bengal growth is 33–37 cm, males are usually larger and heavier than females, Bengal cats have an elongated muscular body with strong legs, and, like in wild ancestors, hind legs are much longer than the front ones. The tail is of medium length, with thick short hair and a rounded black tip. The head of a Bengal cat of unusual wedge-shaped form, slightly elongated and rounded along the line of the forehead. Ears are small, proportional, with rounded ends. The muzzle is expressive, with clearly defined cheekbones. The eyes are almond-shaped or oval, set wide apart. Suppose any color other than blue and aquamarine, for snow bengal (syl-link) – only pure intense blue.
The coat is thick, very beautiful, the undercoat is dense. The pattern allowed in this breed is spots, sockets or stripes. The range of colors is very wide: from white to chocolate. Be sure to have a characteristic pattern (leopard).
Character and habits
There are legends about the allegedly uncontrollable character of Bengals and about their indomitable hunting instinct, but all this is true only in part. Today Bengal cats are perfectly adapted for home maintenance. Bengal has really well developed primitive hunting instincts. At any age, they recognize active games – with balls and toys, laser pointers, always ready to take part in the pursuit or pursuit of the “victim”. Bengal cats get along well with dogs and other animals, with the exception of mice, hamsters and poultry – Bengal will certainly start hunting for them. When raising kittens it is very important to accustom them to hands, otherwise they may grow wildly. It is important to carry out all the socialization procedures and in the first months of life do not leave the cat alone for long. Grown up in care and love, Bengal will be a devoted and affectionate pet, a true “home leopard.”
Care is not complicated: regular vaccination, prevention of parasites, the provision of proper nutrition, active games, bathing every two to three months (Bengals usually have a favorable attitude to water procedures) and, of course, the owner’s love – that’s all that your cat needs.
Predisposition to diseases
Bengals’ health, if they are animals from proven and reliable nurseries, is quite strong. Occasionally, inflammatory bowel disease, cardiomyopathy and urological disorders can occur, however, these diseases also occur in other cat breeds.
Contrary to popular myths, the Bengal cat should not be fed only meat. In the wild, the ancestors of cats had wide access to rodents, birds and insects. Thus, their diet is adapted to animal food with vegetable impurities (sources of fiber and carbohydrates), but an equal sign cannot be put between the meat and all of the above. Therefore, the owner has two main options for feeding his Bengal cat: either choose the Super Premium class diet, or contact a veterinary nutritionist who will help you to prepare a diet of various foods with the obligatory addition of vitamins and minerals. The first option is preferable, as the food specially developed for cats takes into account all the metabolic features of these animals.