Sunday 29 June 2008


domestic kitten cat
Photo by Ferran under a creative commons license

Big words, "cat behavior explained", but it can be done fairly simply and succinctly, I believe. And I think it needs to be done too. Even for the benefit of a number of cat breeders who should know better. Mind you, although the vast majority of cat breeders are sensitive to a cat's behavior and needs, not all of them are, and some are downright poor.

So, how do you explain what dictates and motivates cat behavior? And I am talking here of domestic cat behavior. The cat, despite being domesticated for some 10,000 years ago is still essentially a wild cat in mentality and physiology. And she is able to switch from domestication when in the home of her human "parents" to a wild cat when she goes out on her own.

cat and boy stairs
Cat behavior explained - Photo by Sailing "Footprints: Real to Reel" (Ronn ashore) under creative commons license.

The two lives of a domestic cat - cat behavior explained:


As I have said in other posts we have a form of social contract with the cat, which originally arose out of the need for a cat that could keep the rodent population down and was quickly extended to include companionship for humans. In return we care for our cat. That was and largely still is the agreement.

There is also a human to human social contract, which is, at a basic level, that we act reasonably towards each other and respect each other. Both these contracts are frequently broken. In respect of the cat/human contract, if there is a breach of contract it is always due to the actions of the human.

The domestic cat's tameness (a suppression of her wild nature) originates in her upbringing. If we consider cat breeders, we know that the a kitten's first moments of life are with cats, her cat parents and siblings. In addition the kitten will be socialized to the human through the presence and activities of the cat breeder and her family. A good cat breeder will of course ensure that cats in her charge are fully socialized so that they become fine pets.

As a result the well socialize domestic cat learns to see both cats and humans as part of her family and humans as large cats (in return we sometimes see our cats as small humans). The kitten is part of a human family and a cat family so is both a cat and a human (in terms of mentality).

Also a domestic cat has over the intervening 10,000 years of domestication become physically different to her wild cat ancestors. She is more delicate often (although some wild cats are smaller than domestic cats). And cat breeders have made cat breeds less like the small wild cats or they have tried to recreate the wild cat appearance in a domestic cat (Bengal cat being the classic example). These actions reflect the ever present wild cat connection.

As the cat breeder (in this instance) took over the parenting duties at an early stage the kitten/cat sees the human as a parent. And she behaves in that relationship as a kitten/cat child. In her relationship with humans thereafter, as an adult cat, she sees them a parent substitute. Other than in that respect, the domestic cat's behavior is strictly feline and based on the wild cat instincts and reactions to stimuli and input.

cat and flowers
Cat Behavior explained - Photo by kazukichi under a creative commons license

The Wild

The domestication imbued in her is cast away when she goes out alone into the garden. In America this is very often denied the cat as a large percentage are permanently kept indoors, preventing the cat from expressing their natural urge to behave as a wild cat for a while. I personally find this morally wrong although undeniably a practical necessity on occasions (but we must remind ourselves that it is us who have created a world which is unsafe for the domestic cat). I also think that it is another example of the breach of the contract mentioned above. We did not agree to imprison our cats and force them to lead unnatural lives. A good compromise has to be a cat enclosure.

When the cat goes through the cat flap into the garden alone she is transformed from domestic to wild cat - she lives a double life. Of course there is a large overlap between these two forms of existence. But this underlying condition is ever present - it is cat behavior explained.

As I rescued my cat from the street (as an abandoned cat), she had a difficult start in life. She is nervous as a result. This translates into her preferring to maintain the human/cat relationship nearly all the time even to when she goes into the garden. She will ask me to go with her and accompany her to provide protection. She is maintaining the kitten/human parenting relationship as it makes her feel more secure. Her wild cat instincts come out in play for example.

Once we are aware that a domestic cat is at heart a mild mannered wild cat we can treat her in a manner that suits her and not us. I think this is important. We need to try and do what is comfortable for our cat, which fits it with her mentality and not what is necessarily comfortable and which suits us. I say this because a cat is less able to understand the workings of the world, her actions are instinctive and reactionary. It is therefore beholden to us to manage the relationship. We can modify our behavior and consciously adapt it to suit whereas a cat cannot.

For example, and this is only one example, when playing with our cats (one of the joys of keeping a cat) we should remind ourselves that play for a cat is a form of learning to hunt so it includes scratching and biting. This is not aggressive behavior directed at us. If it is (and you'll notice) it is because the cat is poorly socialized or has learned to behave in that manner due to her own life experiences. Or, and this is more usual, we are playing too hard and too long, which arouses the cat's natural and instinctive wild cat behavior to defend.

Cat behavior explained to Home page

A cat behavior issue

cat paw under a door
Cat behavior issue? A cat's paw under a bathroom door. The cat is trying to get in. Cats like to accompany us when we are on the toilet. This I believe is due to the smell which is personal to us and picked up by your cat who is very smell sensitive and whose life revolves around smells. Photo by corypina. There is no connection between the picture and this post except to illustrate it a form of cat behavior.

This post deals with a cat behavior issue that explains nearly all you need to know about how to live with a cat.

A person who made post in a forum (I won't say where) was asking for help (almost pleading for it) with the behavior of his one year old male DSH (domestic short hair cat - moggie or mixed breed cat).

The cat was doing two things that disturbed and upset the person (actually it annoyed the person a lot). The cat was running at full speed throughout his apartment for about 20 mins. In response he locked the cat in a room. At night the person closed his door to keep his cat out of the bedroom. His cat would reach under the door and poke around trying to get in and in doing so would damage the carpet.

Now, who do you think has the behavior issue? The cat or the human? First up, this cat is in an apartment - an indoor cat it seems. The cat is young. What would you expect a young cat to do cooped up in an apartment all day with little I would expect to amuse him and satisfy his natural instincts? Yep, he'd run around. In part due to frustration and in part to burn up energy. The first "cat behavior issue" is then in fact a human behavior issue in not accepting that he lives with a cat (and not a human) and not understanding cat behavior or being sensitive to it.

It surprises me that this person sought help about his cat trying to get into his bedroom at night (the 2nd cat behavior issue mentioned above). It would seem obvious that his cat wanted to be near his mother/father cat (the human). The answer can only be a common sense one - let him in and leave the door open. If this person is unable to adapt to the needs of his cat he should not keep a cat.

No criticism is meant however of this person. It is simply a lack of awareness and understanding and this is rooted, in my opinion, in human arrogance.

In conclusion nearly all cat behavior issues are human behavior issues if we look at the root and underlying causes.

Photo, bottom - by raster under creative commons license - this cat has not connection to this post it is just here to provide an illustration.

A cat behavior issue to cat cat behavior kneading

Cat Behavior Kneading

cat kneading
Cat Behavior Kneading is natural for a cat, even in this instance. This is a photograph of a semi-feral cat in Athens, Greece. The cat remembered her/his domestic cat roots as she jumped up onto the lap of the photographer's friend/partner and started to knead. Photo by sarako under creative commons license.

Cat behavior - kneading, is perfectly natural to a cat but can be irritating to a human. Although there is a great deal of compatibility in the cat/human relationship there are areas of incompatibility for some people who don't understand cat behavior (no criticism is meant) or who wish to keep a cat but who do not wish to accept all that entails.

If we keep cats we absolutely should accept cats for what they are. People who live with a partner (meaning a human partner) realize that trying to change your partner's behavior will not work and in any event we have decided to live with that person so we know we should, indeed must, accept that person entirely, which means accepting the things we like and the things we dislike. It is both that make up the person's character.

Exactly the same approach can be applied to living with any animal species including cats.

cat kneading
Cat Behavior Kneading - photo by Cherry and Eric under creative commons license.

To a domestic cat we are a mother/father cat. A kitten when still feeding at her/his mother's nipple will stimulate milk flow by kneading the area of her mother's belly around the nipple. The kitten will purr in contented expectation at the milk to come and may dribble as saliva is produced in expectation of food to come. A mother cat will lie down in preparation for feeding he kittens.

When we sit down this is the equivalent (or as near as we get) to a mother cat lying down to feed her kittens. Your cat reverts to being a kitten. In keeping a cat we keep them in a permanent state of kitten hood except when they go out alone at night, for example, and revert to being something of a wild cat.

You cat (acting as a kitten) then jumps up onto your lap and looks for a feed. To stimulate the milk flow she kneads you legs. The action is rhythmical and slow. The movement becomes more purposeful and your cat's claws can be felt. This is an intimate and tender moment in the cat to human relationship, which should be treasured and enjoyed (except the claws can hurt a little!).

At this intimate point some people push their cat away or even worse. This will be surprising and upsetting for your cat. A true mother cat would not do this. Pushing your cat away at this time is the opposite to what should be done as it is a moment that is ideal to cement a tender relationship with your cat and build trust and friendship which brings the true rewards for the human in a cat/human relationship.

Sometimes your cat will knead your clothes or bedclothes. Your clothes and bedclothes smell strongly of us and are soft. The same thought process/behavior is going on.

In conclusion Cat Behavior - Kneading is natural and should be seen as a beautiful expression of your cat's attitude towards you as a parent cat.

Cat Behavior Kneading to Home page

Saturday 28 June 2008

Child cat costume

child cat costume
Child cat costume - photo by steena under a creative commons license.

Here is a list of websites (and some have a high street presence too) where you can get cat costumes for children. These are popular and children's' parties are too.

As this website's visitors are mainly from the USA (firstly) and the UK (secondly), I'll focus on these two countries.

My research indicates that you can get a child cat costume through these outlets - these are the top 5 online businesses in this area of operation, in each country, based on a Google search. Google has an intricate mathematical formula (algorithm or algo for short) comprising 200 and more factors for selecting the top website so it is a good criteria for selection:-


Costume Craze
An internet based company located near Salt Lake City (Pleasant Grove). This is a really good website with plenty of choice. You can buy a full cat costume (child or adult) or a mask and all at typical USA prices (great value for us Brits). This site gets a lot of traffic and is listed favorably by Google all good signs of a good business.

The Nightmare Factory
This link (above) opens to the child cat costumes and accessories page. Nice selection and keen prices (for a Brit!). This costume shop is part of a central Texas haunted house (presumably an entertainment center). The center was closed by the fire department unless they complied with new stringent and financially demanding laws.


The warehouse is located in Cerritos, California (Long Beach, Los Angeles). They sell a wide range of products including child cat costumes. Nice wide range of costumes including wild cat costumes. Active and professional website.

Costume Universe
This link takes you to the cat costumes for children. This site is good but not as good as say brandsonsale or Costumecraze. It is not as active as them either.

This link is the results of a search for child cat costumes on this site. The business name is Extreme Halloween Network, which is made up of 14 website, of which Annies Costumes is the first. In business online since 1996 so well established. They used to run a conventional store but concentrated on the online business since 2003.


This is an internet based company with a wide range of animal costumes including child cat costumes.

Party Pants
I'm going to be a bit tough here and say that this is not a great website and it is not a unique domain name (it is hosted by what was Freeserve and now owned by Orange) but that doesn't mean the products aren't good though. This business is based in the north of England (in the vicinity of Middlesborough). This is a mail order, internet business. Order by phone as opposed to online through the website. This is probably quite a small business.

Fancy Dress
Their website is the internet presence of a high street costume hire business based in the center of Manchester. Their shop is called All Star Costume Hire, so they hire out costumes. They sell a child cat costume for £7.99, which is cheap but price is always dependent on quality. They would appear to hire out from their shop and sell from their website (wrong? - comment please).

Nice pro website. An active website. Hire or buy. Based in London (150 Camden High Street - this is a convenient position for Londoners. Camden High Street is not far from Regents Park and the zoo). Nice to see them both on the high street in a central location and on the internet. In business since 1982 they say.

They do a child cat costume jumpsuit for £7.01. You can hire a fancy cat costume for £40 for three days plus returnable deposit (this is a good looking costume hence price disparity with purchase of jumpsuit I presume).

The link points to the cat costumes.

Child cat costume to home page

Human grade cat food

Cat food is probably OK as human food. Probably nearly all cat food is human grade cat food. The ingredients are acceptable. Although "by products" in cat food is material that is not fit for human consumption; that said as I understand it, it is cooked at a sufficiently high temperature to kill bacteria (hence the ash in cat food).

I am sure there are many cases of humans living off cat or dog food mostly I suspect for short periods of time (I hope!). In some ways dry cat food is more suited to humans with its high carbohydrate content. There is a gradual realization that dry cat food is not wholly suitable for cats, which seems a strange thing to say. But it should be realized that cat food is a commercial product and in order to please company shareholders the first duty of a company is to make a profit, the second duty is to feed cats well.

There is a company executive whose job in part is to manage the pet food quality at Marks and Spencers. He eats it to check it. There again M&S cat food is very high quality and probably resembles a paté or paste that could be spread onto toast. In short it is definitely human grade cat food.

So that's decided humans can eat cat food but cats can't eat dog food and dogs can but shouldn't eat cat food even if they prefer it as the dietary requirements are different. The cat is an obligate carnivore (must eat flesh) although this does not seem to be respected by the cat food manufacturers. Dogs are also carnivores as far as I aware but are more flexible in their dietary requirements.

On a more serious note, a 2 year old child living in California was found to have lived off dry cat food for 6 days because his mother had sadly died. This shows great resourcefulness for a young child.

Note: The taste of dry cat food is bland, much like a dry biscuit but not distasteful. It is not too hard and there is a lingering taste in the mouth (I've just tried some that's how I know!).

Human grade cat food to cat food recipe

Thursday 26 June 2008

White Siberian Tiger

White Siberian Tiger
This is how we currently see this most beautiful of wild animals, behind bars, imprisoned. As the photographer says in his caption, "praying tiger". Praying to live a normal life, uncaged free to roam, but we have created a hostile world for wild cats and the Siberian Tiger's existence is at stake. Photo by A. Dawson under a creative commons license.


By far the most important aspect of the Siberian Tiger (Panthera tigris altaica) (Amur tiger) is the decline in population of this fantastic big cat.

The White Siberian Tiger is not, as you may know, a separate big cat species (or subspecies) to the orange Siberian Tiger (the classic tiger color and pattern). This superb animal is simply a Siberian tiger with a different colored coat but see below, please. As a result this posting is about the Siberian tiger generally with reference to the genetics of the white Siberian tiger. And before proceeding it it worth mentioning the following.

Note this please: It is argued that all white tigers are mutations from the Bengal tiger, which is not the Siberian tiger. Certainly all white tigers in captivity were for many years tigers breed from a single white Bengal tiger that came from Madhya Pradesh, India in 1951. He was called, Mohan. Mohan was mated with his normal coloured daughter resulting in 4 white cubs and all the white tigers in captivity come from this inbred beginnings.

White tigers in captivity have high coefficients of inbreeding leading to infertility (poor sperm - see Inbreeding and Poor Sperm Quality ) genetic defects and inreased cub mortality. Orange tigers born from later matings are presumably unwanted. It is a massive abuse of this magnificent wildcat. Sometimes these white tiger are cross bred with captive Siberian tigers to produce a hybrid. These offspring could be called hybrid White Siberian tigers. The question remains whether there could be wild white Siberian tigers as the natural mutation occuring in the Bengal tiger (albiet many years ago in respect of the Bengal tiger), could occur in the Siberian tiger and with the population of the Siberian tiger rapidly diminishing there will be an increased risk of inbreeding (see Inbreeding of Wildcats). Inbreeding increases the chance of recessive genes such as the one producing the white tiger becoming apparent. Also you might like to see: Endangered White Tiger.

The difference in the coat coloration and the faint pattern is due to the presence of two recessive alleles (allele = one of a pair of genes) at the same location (locus) on the chromosome (this is called homozygous).

White Siberian Tiger
White Siberian Tiger showing the diluted coloration and the brown stripes instead of the very dark brown/black stripes. This cat has blue eyes and a pink nose. Photo by christinatinarobinson under a creative commons license.


The recessive gene dilutes (or inhibits the formation of) the orange color and the dark stripes. It is a mutant recessive gene. In domestic cats mutant genes have resulted in the creation of new cat breeds (as defined by the cat fancy). An example would be dwarf cats (due to a dominant gene) and the American Curl. There are many other examples and you can see them all by going to the main website, If we discovered a tiger with curled ears would we name the animal a different type of tiger? I think not.

As the Wikipedia author says, the recessive gene is not one that produces an albino tiger. In the world of domestic cats (the cat fancy) the inhibitor gene (I) is dominant. Its presence has the effect of reducing the pigmentation that is embedded in each hair shaft. This results in what the cat fancy calls, "silver" coloration.

It is the dilution gene (dd) that is recessive (as signified by the lower case letters). It is found at the dilute locus on the chromosome. When this gene is a mutant version, the pigmentation granules, that are usually evenly distributed throughout the individual hairs, are larger and grouped in clumps and therefore placed unevenly in the hairs. Parts of the individual hairs can have no pigment at all. This gives the impression of a diluted color. A classic case of this can be found in the grey British Shorthair (this cat breed can be many other colors/patterns too). It has to be present in homozygous form (2 alleles at the same locus) to have effect and black becomes blue/grey. It can also be present in cats with the tabby gene as can be seen in this post on cat coats tabby.

The coat is heat sensitive as is the case for pointed domestic cats such as the Siamese cat. This is why the points (the cold extremities) of the Siamese are darker.

White Siberian Tiger
White Siberian Tiger - Photo by A. Dawson under a creative commons license.


It is claimed that Siberian tigers are the largest and rarest of all the big cats. A big male can weigh a maximum of about 800 lbs and be near 11 feet in length. White tigers generally are on the increase as captive animals. Another probably more frequently encountered white tiger is the Bengal white tiger. White pelage (hair fur and wool of the animal) is more commonly found on the Bengal tiger, a subspecies of the tiger family.

Most (or all/) white tigers are bred in captivity as they are popular with zoo visitors and there are so few left in the wild. As mentioned, they are inbred and inbreeding will increase the chance of producing the phenotype (appearance) of a recessive gene such as the one producing the white coat on this cat but there is the downside of inbreeding depression (weakened immune system, physiological defects and ill health). This hints at commercial gain (in zoo attendance) at the expense of animal welfare.

White Siberian Tiger
White Siberian tiger. The fact that this is a skillfully made up picture (if I'm wrong - tell me please), is very apt as the current population of this wild cat is highly artificially made up as explained through inbreeding in zoos. Photo by Siberian Tiger.

The white Siberian tiger (if one exists) eats the same prey as the orange Siberian and Bengal tiger. The sharply declining population of the Siberian tiger is due to poaching and habitat loss, essentially. Poaching is in part at least, motivated by the high prices for body parts, which as used in Chinese medicine (tiger bone for example is used in their blighted medicine). Chinese medicine has caused massive damage to important wild species. This problem needs to be addressed by the world wide community. I have rarely seen this issue addressed (except by me) and why not? Most Siberian tigers (orange and white - are there any white ones left in the wild? - people say no) are killed and then exported to China.

Apparently, since 1993 the Chinese Government declared that the use of tiger bone in medicine illegal; obviously words and no action. There has also been a declared intention to put pressure on the Chinese pharmaceutical companies to use substitutes to these animal parts but it would seem to be to no avail. There is a lack of enforcement and commitment plus there is too much money in it. Commerce ultimately runs the world and certainly runs China.

China is ostensibly a member of CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora). That means China should do all it can to stop the trade of endangered species in their country. Yet there is open evidence that this is not happening.

Has China got a stranglehold on other countries? Probably yes, as China produces cheap goods and the West likes that. China actually is causing many world problems. The West does not need more cheap goods, feeding the insatiable human appetite to own and consume. In addition China has an appalling animal rights record. Many thousands of feral cats have been inhumanly slaughtered to clear the streets for the 2008 Olympics. Some Chinese eat domestic cats. I allege that the Chinese imprison humans for minor offences and many prisoners are executed and their body parts sold for profit to fund the prison system.

White Siberian Tiger
White Siberian Tiger or is this a hybrid Bengal/Siberian tiger? Photo by Photo by christinatinarobinson under a creative commons license, which allows modification of the image. This image has been cropped slightly from the original removing the frame to allow it to fit in with the other images on this page.


The habitat of the Siberian tiger is the woods of Russia (Siberia is in Eastern Russia but Google maps does not recognize the word "Siberia" - Primorsk region being one area) and North Korea (link to Google maps) and North Eastern China. As far as I am aware this cat is near extinction (or extinct) in China and North Korea, in the wild. The Siberian Russian pine and broad leaf forests are the last sanctuary probably because of inaccessibility.

However, logging in Russia has had an impact on the population of tigers living in the wild. Fortunately it seems that some trees are less commercially viable to cut down so it is in these areas where the tiger survives as does the prey which it hunts. The Gorbachev era (the end of communism) brought in capitalism which in turn encouraged wider logging and reduction in habitat. It also probably indirectly encouraged the trade with China in Siberian tiger skins and parts as it encouraged entrepreneurs.

Apparently between 334-417 Siberian tigers exist in the Siberian forests. I don't know if there are any white ones. And the experts don't know either despite what one or two people have said in comments.

However, I think it can be safely said that the performing White Siberian tiger in a zoo is the future of the tiger. This is what we have created for this animal. Maybe it's not so bad. I just prefer it a little more natural.


The Siberian tiger generally is critically endangered. Urgent action not words are required. The captive breeding program is tainted by commerce and undermined by inbreeding, which not infrequently results in the birth of cubs with congenital defects. See this video:

This is a horrible but powerful video. What we see is not what is. It never has been............

  • Wild Cats of the World
White Siberian Tiger to Home page

Do cats grieve?

Cats feel emotion therefore in answer to the question, "Do cats grieve?", the answer is almost certainly a Yes.

How can we know that cat's feel emotion? Some scientists will deny they feel emotion. Perhaps these are the scientists who carry out experiments on cats for some of the large cat food manufacturers. These scientists views are not objective and like all humans their views are driven by self interest.

Many cat keepers exaggerate their cats abilities and turn their cats into children. This is understandable but it is not objective either.

But even at a practical and unscientific level, concerned and observant cat keepers will recognize clear signs of emotion being expressed in their cats.

I can only talk about my cat. She will express frustration in her voice. If I don't answer her call in the morning her voice will change to one which shows frustration and even irritation. This is a small indication of an emotional response. Cats are very similar physiologically to humans. It is for this reason that they are tested on sometimes.

Do cats grieve? If as I say cats feel emotion, it is a natural consequence of the death of a cat they have lived with that they will grieve the loss of that cat as it is a normal emotional response.

One factor that may come into play is memory. My view is that cats have short memories. But they are trainable, meaning they will, like all animals, including humans, be conditioned to respond in a certain way due to events that impact their lives. Take for example a stray cat I am caring for on occasion, who I have called Timmy. If you raise your arm at a certain angle and in a certain way, he will flinch. This is a conditioned reaction to someone hitting him, I suspect.

Breeders occasionally talk about a cat that becomes clingy (towards the human) and more nervous after the loss of a fellow companion cat. This will happen for a while until memory plays its part and the emotional impact fades.

Some of the emotional reaction from the cat may be dependent on the emotional impact of the human keeper. That I accept. However, it is my view that cats grieve the loss of companions.

Do cats grieve? to home page

Tuesday 24 June 2008

What do White Tigers Eat

White Bengal tiger
White tiger - A White Bengal Tiger cub - photo copyright Frank Peters

In answer to the question, "what do white tigers eat", the answer is that they eat the same as orange tigers. White tigers are not a separate breed of wild cat. They are the tigers that we are familiar with. Except they carry a recessive gene in homozygous form (2 copies of the gene at the same location), that turns the usual orange fur, pale to an off white cream color and the strips to black, grey and chocolate color.

This would appear to be a form of dilution of the orange color and mackerel strips (the tiger is a mackerel tabby cat essentially). In the domestic cat the dilution gene is a recessive gene symbolized by dd in a cat with the dilute color. In the domestic cat (and the same process may occur in the tiger), the presence of the gene has the effect of enlarging the pigment granules, which are deposited less evenly in the individual hairs. Clumps of pigment of differing sizes are fixed within each hair and parts of the hair will have little pigmentation in it. This has the effect of colors appearing more dilute or faded. In the white tiger this translates to near white and less contrasty strips.
Snow Tiger
White tigers are normally larger than the "usual" tiger. There are also snow tigers (white tigers without strips - see picture >>>) but these seem to be the result of mankind's selective breeding in a zoo environment for the purpose of attracting visitors.

In fact the white tiger although hunted to extinction in the wild many years ago is widely bred in captivity and the population in zoos is growing (perhaps too much due to lack of space). The breeding in zoos of this animal is to attract visitors. Zoos have inbreed white tigers, which can throw up defective recessive genes causing inbreeding depression ("depression" meaning weakened health). I am afraid humankind has not done wonderfully well in respect of the white tiger. Having slaughtered this large cat we inbreed her to ill health for commercial gain.

Back to the question,
what do white tigers eat? This is what all tigers eat:

Deer (barking deer, chital deer, swamp deer, hog deer, Rusa deer, Red deer, Sika deer), antelope, buffalo, farm livestock, sambar, young rhino, elephant calves, water buffalo, guar, wapiti, moose, peafowl, monkeys, civets, fish, frogs, crabs, lizards, pythons and vegetation and fruit such as grass and fruit.

However as white tigers only exist in zoos they will eat whatever they are fed by the zoo keepers! Probably meat that is not fit for human consumption.

Out of interest their favourite is wild boar and deer. A tiger hunts alone. She approaches to within about 20 meters. Chases, pounces and pulls down the prey whereupon he/she will snap the spine of the prey at the nape of the neck with her large teeth (this is exactly same way domestic cats kill their prey) or if the prey is large, kill by suffocating the prey by clamping her teeth on the prey's throat. She starts eating at the rump usually and hides the prey in dense undergrowth. She'll gorge herself.

Picture RHS - Snow tiger Tenerife Zoo - photo copyright


What do White Tigers Eat to Cheetah Habitat

Sunday 22 June 2008

American Shorthair tabby

Above -- American shorthair tabby cat - a pure and wholly normal cat. The cat illustrated has a classic tabby coloring and pattern, the blotched tabby pattern with the very distinct tabby "M" on the forehead - photo strictly copyright Helmi Flick.

The American shorthair tabby is, for me, the best coat color and pattern for this most normal and balanced of American cats. But is she American? The origins of this cat breed is in England so it is fair to argue that this is an English cat, the English Shorthair. 

Yet, as the first of this breed came over to America in the early 1600s I think the English can concede that by now an American shorthair tabby is an American cat.

The tabby pattern is the most natural of all cat patterns and colors because it has evolved naturally as the best in terms of camouflage and in the early days before domestic cats became wild cats (about 9,000 years ago) it was all about survival in a natural environment. And the landscape is often brown and broken in color and texture.

I have made an extensive post about the tabby cat coat under the heading cat coats tabby. In summary, each hair is not a single color but has a horizontal banding of black and yellow. The black color is made up a substance (a pigment) called eumelanin and the yellow color is made up of a pigment called phaeomelanin. The gene that dictates how this coloring is deposited in the hair as it grows is the Agouti gene (symbolized by the letter A - a dominant gene). The tip of the hair is black.

In the American shorthair tabby, the Agouti gene works in conjunction with another gene (a tabby gene) which is recessive and which is symbolized by the lower case letters, mc. The presence of this gene results in eliminating the black to yellow banding on certain hairs and allowing only the production of black pigmentation, which is present throughout the length of the hair. This happens in a clump of hairs and in a blotched tabby, as shown above, the clumps form swirls and blotches throughout the torso. In a mackerel tabby (named after the fish's strips) the patterns are striped

Above -- Silver Classic American Shorthair tabby cat - photo strictly copyright Helmi Flick. The silver tabby lacks the yellow pigmentation causing the yellow banding referred to above. Without this pigmentation the black stands out more producing a high contrast pattern, something that breeder aim for generally in patterns. If some yellow pigment remains it is called "tarnishing " in the cat fancy. This color is produced by a dominant gene called the inhibitor gene, symbolized by the letter I. It retrains and subdues the development of the pigment during hair growth.

The CFA allow no outcrosses for the American Shorthair, which means that breeders whose cats are registered with the CFA must breed American Shorthair to American Shorthair.

Click on the link to see more fine photographs and read more about the American Shorthair cat. This a very normal domestic cat. See a classic silver tabby American Shorthair show cat at a show.

  • Robinson's Genetics for Cat Breeders and Veterinarians

American shorthair tabby to American Curl

Blue Abyssinian Cats

blue Abyssinian cat
Blue Abyssinian cat - slate blue and oatmeal - photo strictly copyright Helmi Flick. Note: I am not 100% sure that this is a picture of a Blue Aby but I believe I am correct - wrong? please comment - thanks.

As you probably know Blue Abyssinian Cats are not a bright blue or even a mid-blue but more like a delicate blue/grey color mixed with a beige like color. A number of cats have to be blue/grey and these are the grey cat breeds.

The Abyssinian is a tabby cat but a special one with tabby pattern unlike the classic tabby cats. The Abyssinian tabby allele produces a restricted (much reduced) tabby pattern (on this occasion the term "allele" means a mutant form of a gene. This term is often used to mean one of a pair genes, however, but Robinson's Genetics says the former usage is more correct). The pattern only occurring (it seems very faintly) on the legs, head and tail and more faintly on the remainder of the cat.

There are many tabby patterns, the classic being a blotched pattern and the two other well known patterns are the spotted (seen for example in the Bengal cat) and the mackerel patterns (strips, you can see this pattern in the Toyger cat).

Ruddy Abyssinian Cats

The ruddy Abyssinian, the color we normally associated with this cat breed is produced by a combination of these genes:

-- Ticked gene in homozygous form (meaning both copies of the gene) indicated in genetic terms like this: TaTa (ticked gene)

-- Agouti gene in homozygous form (meaning both copies of the gene) indicated in genetic terms like this: AA

All Abyssinians have the combination genes of TaTa and AA. In addition there are these genes: B (browning gene) and D (dense coloration). In the ruddy Abyssinian the ground color has been intensified by selective breeding.

blue Abyssinian cat
Blue Abyssinian in foreground. Background is a Russian Blue. Photo copyright

Blue Abyssinian Cats

The coloration of Blue Abyssinian Cats is produced by the above set of genes with the exception that the gene D (dense coloration) is substituted by the dd. This produces ticking that is blue/grey over a color that Robinson's Genetics describes as "cream to oatmeal".

The genetic symbol dd represents the dilute recessive gene (lower case letters) and as it is "dd" these particular genes present in this cat are in homozygous form or there are two together which allows the genes to produce the dilute effect.

The individual strands of agouti affected hairs have banding of slate blue or blue/grey and beige (or oatmeal as mentioned above) rather than black and beige (some people say yellow rather than beige). The appearance (phenotype) should be of a warm but dark blue cat.

  • Me
  • Robinson's Genetic's for Cat Breeders & Veterinarians
  • CFA

Blue Abyssinian Cats to Abyssinian cats

Friday 20 June 2008

Maine Coon Cat Health

The health of cat breeds and in this instance Maine Coon Cat Health is important to people. In fact it is often one of the most important aspects of a cat breed. It must be and it should be. The welfare of cats should be our primary concern.

Maine Coon cat
This Maine Coon cat ("Hugo") is not ill as far as I am aware. He is here because it is a nice picture (copyright stevegarfield) and is reproduced under a creative commons license.

The Maine Coon is a fine looking cat with a long American history. This cat is large and looks robust. This is not surprising, after all, as their origins are in the barns of Maine, USA, as a semi-feral mouser cat. You've got to be pretty tough to live like that.

One difficulty in discussing cat health problems is to make sure that the problem is breed specific. Some conditions are found in all domestic cats. But if that is the case sometimes a particular cat breed has a predisposition to a disease (i.e. it is found more often in a certain cat breed because the disease is genetically inherited).

These are the diseases that are known to be found more commonly in the Maine Coon cat than in other breeds - Maine Coon Cat Health problems. Note: Maine Coon breeders are aware of the need to manage and eliminate these diseases through screening and wise breeding so this post should not frighten anyone off from adopting a Maine Coon cat.

Maine Coon Cat Health - Hip Dysplasia

It is well known in the cat fancy that this disorder is more common in the larger cats and the Maine Coon is the largest domestic cat as registered by the CFA. This disease impairs mobility. As I understand it, it is more common in larger cats because the condition is more apparent in larger cats as the extra weight exposes the weakness in the hip joint.

The word "dysplasia" means an abnormal development or growth of organs, cells or tissue in the body.

In this instance the growth occurs in the hip with bone tissue being replaced by fibrous tissue. This is because the hip joint is ill fitting causing wear. Cartilage is produced to repair the joint. The disorder is both inherited and caused by environmental factors. If severe it causes painful arthritis and is crippling. (Wikipedia says it also affects the Siamese cat - link to Siamese cat health problems).

Patellar luxation is sometimes found in Maine Coons and can "occur concurrently to hip dysplasia"). The knee cap slides to the inside of the leg. Can cause lameness and reluctance to jump (source: Medical, Genetic & Behavioral Aspects of Purebred Cats).

Maine Coon Cat Health - HCM

This stands for Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. It is an inherited disease. This means that the cat in question (not all cats in a breed) is programmed genetically to acquire the disease. HCM is late onset (adult onset - becoming noticed when the cat is an adult) meaning that it is not congenital (symptoms present at birth). HCM is the most common heart disease reported in domestic cats. It is known to be present in the Maine Coon cat breed. About one third test positive apparently. This seems a high percentage.

I have a friend Valley Girl who cares for a wonderful polydactyl Maine Coon. Maine Coons have a predisposition to be polydactyl as well but this is not a health problem. She has contacts in the Maine Coon world! And she reports what seems like a high percentage of Maine Coons dying young of HCM and one dying of hip dysplasia complications. I don't wish to harp on about genetic illnesses but I have always kept moggies and it has never entered my head that my cats might die, at say aged four, of a heart disease. I find the high percentage worrying. I don't know how other people feel but a poll on my site indicates that people are concerned about a cat's underlying health. On that basis inherited diseases damage the reputation of a cat breed and the MC is a very popular cat.

The symptoms are a thickening of the left
thickening of the left ventricular free wall & interventricular septum. As it affects the Bengal cat as well I have made several posts about this disease in relation to the Bengal cat:
A cat will be suspected to have HCM when a heart murmur is present. Cardiac ultrasound is used to confirm the presence of this disease. As stated, the development of HCM starts in adulthood, which could mean early adulthood (8-12 months) or much later at say 8 -12 years. Screening should take place every year of adulthood therefore. Breeders regularly screen and remove cats from the breeding program that test positive.

But not all breeders do screen as far as I am aware, which is a shame as it means they perpetuate the disease in their breeding lines (this may apply more to Bengal cat breeders who are just coming to terms with the fact that their cats may contract HCM). It also means they may pass on the disease to other breeders if they loan or sell their stud to another breeder.

In Maine Coons substantial research has been carried out (I believe) and as a result the gene involved is known to be autosomal (not sex related - a gene located on a chromosome that is not a sex chromosome) dominant with variable penetrance. On the following page is an abstract of some research carried out on the Prevalence of HCM in Swedish Maine Coon cats that were asymptomatic. It is reproduced under a creative commons license fully complied with to the best of my knowledge.

Maine Coon Cat Health - PKD

Kidney Disease
Maine Coon Cat Health - photo reproduced under Wikimedia commons license photo credit: CDC/Dr. Edwin P. Ewing, Jr. This picture is of human kidneys as far as I am aware.

This stands for Polycystic Kidney Disease. It is a Maine Coon Cat Health problem. It is present in Persian cats as well amongst other breeds. It also occurs in humans. This is also a genetically inherited disease.

Cysts form in both kidneys (see photo above). Kidney function is impaired and it deteriorates with renal disease at aged 3-10 years. The gene responsible is autosomal dominant. The symptoms are weight loss, depression, occasional vomiting and increased thirst and urination. PKD cats need not be euthanized unless deemed necessary, but it is a fatal disease.

Maine Coon Cat Health - Gingivitis

This disease affects any cat but is mentioned in relation to the Maine Coon so is probably more commonly present in this cat breed (i.e. a genetic predisposition). Symptoms are swollen gums that bleed. This causes discomfort and loss of appetite.

Maine Coon Cat Health - Spinal muscular atrophy

The symptom of this disease is the death of neurons in the spinal cord. These neurons control muscle function. Accordingly, the muscles fail to work properly and muscle weakness ensues resulting in a non normal gait and a less athletic cat (cats are usually very athletic). The cat's life is impaired but it is not fatal (it seems).

It is transmitted by an autosomal recessive gene. It has been transmitted widely. Breeders can now test for this disease.

The Maine Coon has more than the usual genetic predispositions to certain diseases from my research or at least this is the impression that I have. This may be due to careless breeding early on in the breeding program (i.e. many decades ago). It would seem that modern breeders are more in tune with the need to control and manage these diseases - I hope so.

One last point. A concerned Italian breeder is worried that enough is not being done in Europe to eradicate HCM from the breed. He emailed me. This is his email: Maine Coon Cat Health in Europe.

Maine Coon Cat Health - Sources:
  • Tufts Oct 2003
  • Wikipedia
  • Picture of
  • Robinson's Genetics
Maine Coon Cat Health to Maine Coon cats

Maine Coon Personality

Maine Coon cat
Maine Coon. Photo by Helmi Flick.


You have to be realistic and sensible when discussing Maine Coon Personality or the personality of any cat breed. All domestic cats have similar personalities, whether they are mixed breed cats, feral cats or purebred cats. Wild cats including early generation wild cat hybrids have different personalities but even then the underlying desires and motivators are the same so most of the character is the same too. All humans have similar personalities, why should cats be different? In humans you get some fairly slight variations from country to country but the variations from individual person to individual person is greater, much greater. The same applies to cats and cat breeds.


All that said, Maine Coon cats have noticeably nice personalities. People who keep Maine Coon cats say that they act like clowns. They may act more foolishly than other domestic cats but I doubt it. All domestic cats do things that are charming to us but seem a little silly sometimes. We find this amusing and it is a major reason why we like living with a domestic cat. 


A meow is not quite part of the Maine Coon Personality but a trait nonetheless. The Maine Coon has a distinctive voice, more a chirp than your standard meow. They are fairly quiet cats and the cats I have seen at cat shows (the best ones, perhaps) are very laid back, well behaved and quiet.


Some breeders say they are intelligent. Once again I think a bit of caution is required when talking about cat intelligence. To differentiate in intelligence from breed to breed seems almost impossible. Some cats are less active perhaps because they are more naturally anxious. This may give the impression that they are less intelligent. This applies to the Persian cat for instance. At the opposite end of the spectrum the Sphynx and the skinny cats (e.g. Oriental Shorthair) are more active and considered intelligent. I can confirm that the Sphynx cat acts intelligently and is active. Higher levels of activity can be seen in the wild cat hybrids too (e.g. Bengal cat). These cats may have brains that are perhaps used more (more stimulation) which makes them seem more intelligent. A survey found that the Maine Coon was mid range in intelligence for what it is worth

Water babies? 

Unlike many domestic cats the Maine Coon likes to play with water. This may be a throwback to the semi wild barn Maine Coon cats of the 19th Century, who know? Feral and wild cats will like water because it is a source of food and drink. While most domestic cats don't have the same need to depend on natural resources to survive. 

Laid back? 

The Maine Coon Cat Club says that this cat breed is affectionate and doesn't mind being loved by any member of the household. I think this a well balanced cat and quite laid back provided she/he is well socialized as part of the breeding process. 


I think that the attraction to the Maine Coon (and this is a very popular cat - the second most popular currently based on the popularity poll after the Siamese) is the combination of characteristics meaning the Maine Coon Personality plus the fantastic looks and that ever so touchable tail and fur. Maine Coon Personality to Maine Coon Cats

Thursday 19 June 2008

Maine Coon Cat Rescue


Maine Coon
Photo copyright Helmi Flick

I think we all realize that we owe it to the cats to start at a Maine Coon cat rescue center or organization if we are thinking about adopting a Maine Coon cat. It may take a little longer to find a cat that suits but the rewards are much higher. The underlying pleasure of rescuing and re-homing a cat, any cat, purebred or not has a very valuable and enduring benefit to the person, which adds immensely to the relationship with the cat. I should know as I have lived with a cat that I rescued about 15 years ago. She has been a wonderful companion.

I've made several posts about the Maine Coon cat on this website. They are about the Maine Coon cat's appearance, character and health. You'll also see some great pictures if you follow these links:
Based on a popularity poll of a large number of votes the Maine Coon cat is the 2nd most popular cat breed at the date of this posting.....

Maine Coon cat
Maine Coon cat - photo copyright Helmi Flick

And now down to Maine Coon Cat Rescue:

You will find and see Maine Coon cats in your search for rescue cat. Lots of them will not be purebred or have a pedigree. They will be mixed breed cats with some Maine Coon. If you don't mind this, it's great as the cat doesn't mind either. In fact the cat doesn't know whether he or she is purebred, it is completely irrelevant to a cat and adopting a cat is always about what is best for the cat.

Another point. There are fewer rescue operations than breeders. It is easier to find a purebred Maine Coon than a rescued one. And rescued ones could be mixed breed. The reason is money. Breeders are essentially in it to make money. Rescue is run by volunteers. If there was more money in rescue there would be less rescue cats.

Purebred Cat Rescue
However, if you do really want to keep a purebred Maine Coon, I have a fairly comprehensive page on the website that lists a lot of ways to find one from specialist purebred cat rescue centers, to non-purebred organizations and Yahoo Groups of which there are a considerable number. Click on the sub-heading link above to go to this information.

Here are some Maine Coon cat rescue organizations by country. A lot of the organizations do not ship (for the sake of the cat) so location of the cats and distance is all important. The location of the Maine Coon cat rescue organizations is not always relevant as it doesn't tell you where the cats are unless they have a proper shelter facility:


The Maine Coon Cat Club has a re-homing section. I don't know how current the page is and there are only 2 cats available at the time of this post but this is a nice and valuable service. They say where the cats currently are.


Texas Maine Coon Rescue and Friends
I have a personal interest in this rescue center as some of the proceeds of revenue from this website goes towards a monthly payment to this shelter. Click on the link to see where the money goes. See also donations to Texas Maine Coon Rescue. Here is a picture of me and Christie at her place of work with one of the rescue cats. He is not a Maine Coon cat as this rescue group handle all breeds including Maine Coons.

Photo above: Christie Montgomery on the left who runs Texas Maine Coon Cat Rescue with me on the right with Meeney a lovely boy cat. He is not a Maine Coon just a great and lively cat. He was in the cage to the left for customers to the shop to see. The boarding cattery attached to the shop where Christie works also boards some of the rescue cats. Other rescue cats stay with foster people.

United Maine Coon Cat Rescue League
I really don't know how current this operation is as "recent placements" are dated August 2006! The website when visited at the date of this post has faults so I am not sure about this rescue operation. I am not sure where they are located. This really should be clear from the beginning.

Maine Coon Rescue
This seems to be the premier Maine Coon cat rescue in the USA. They work with Petfinder to publish available cats and have a Yahoo group. I'd certainly recommend joining their Yahoo Group. They are located in Franklin, Kentucky.

Maine Coon Rescue Alliance

This group of volunteers seem to be active recently, which is a good sign. The website indicates activity in re-homing cats in June 2008. As expected and mentioned above the cats in their charge are Maine Coon mixed breed cats, so not purebreds. They are needy and lovely cats all the same. This group is located in Austin, Texas although that doesn't mean much sometimes as many rescue centers/groups are simply making arrangements from a base and the cats are located elsewhere in various places. The catchment areas though will be Texas.

Arizona Maine Coon Cat Rescue
Once again I have difficulty in working out how current things are on this website. Located Scottsdale, Arizona. So I guess the catchment area in Arizona.

Maine Coon Adoptions - Cat Rescue Northern California
Adopt a Maine Coon Cat. This rescue center produces videos of their rescue cats needing rehoming. Here is one of their cats for adoption at 24-2-09:

Maine Coon kitten -the cats photographed by Helmi are show cats. This cat probably isn't but I love the expression, very Maine Coon and so much a cat. Photo copyright Vironevaeh

Yahoo Groups

Yahoo Groups are a network of people working in the field of cat rescue (in this case for the Maine Coon) and those people looking to adopt. In fact, anyone interested for whatever reason in Maine Coon cat rescue. You'll need to join with the administrator's permission but this is usually a formality (but not always).

Some of these groups may be part of the organizations listed above but I don't think they are. One last point, I have selected these. A number of groups have memberships that are too small to be useful, which I have rejected. These have substantial memberships and activity as a result.

Maine Coon Alliance Rescue Network
This group seems active; 22 new messages in the last 7 days. This group will also educate people (if they feel they need it). You can learn a lot from the best Yahoo Groups. I don't know how good they are but activity levels are important obviously.

This is not a Maine Coon cat rescue group but a network of people who want to exchange information about pedigree Maine Coon cats. You might therefore get some ideas about adoption. Nice and active with 48 messages in 7 days.

Maine Coon cat rescue to Maine Coon Cats

Wednesday 18 June 2008

Savannah cats

Savannah cat
Savannah cat - photograph copyright Helmi Flick

Savannah cats are fantastic looking cats but some people are not so sure about them. We know how well controlled the borders are in Australia (for humans that is).

Well, the same rules are in place for animals too. Some people in Australia think they have a feral cat problem. Feral cats in Australia kill native species such as snakes and lizards apparently.

The fear seems to be that if Savannah cats are imported or bred in Australia, this fine looking domestic cat breed, may turn into a nationwide pest. It is hard to see this cat being a pest. The concerns come from environmentalists.

The argument goes that if an ordinary sized feral domestic cat can harm native species then a large domestic cat like the Savannah (in fact the largest domestic cat breed in respect of the earlier generation such as the F2 - second generation from the wild) will potentially cause even more damage if the cat becomes feral. It would, though, seem highly unlikely that this cat would become feral due to the rarity of this cat breed and expense. They are expensive cats. Although this breed is relatively large compared to other domestic cats, they are relatively small compared to other animals including humans.

Anyway there are real fears and there appears to be a growing concern. I would have thought that the sensible solution would be careful control and management which should be the case with all domestic cats. In fact it is this that is being put forward as the best way forward by the importers Savannah Cats Australia. Another point is that they are importing and breeding (it seems to me from what I have read) F5 Savannahs, which are obviously far more like a domestic cat in character (98% domestic cat Kathrin Stucki of A1 Savannahs says) than for example F2 Savannahs. In the USA some people like to keep F2 wild cat hyrids. It would seem that the concerns some people have in Australia are in relation to the F2 Savannahs. This would seem to be misguided.

Savannah Cats Australia are working with the founding cattery, A1 Savannahs, which is located in the USA.

As usual it is a balance between human rights at a fundamental level (freedom of choice) and animal rights, including the rights of wild animals.

Monday 16 June 2008

Burmilla Breeders

Burmilla cat
Burmilla cat - photo copyright perlmonger. Published under a creative commons license which allows for the cropping that has taken place. Thanks for license.

I've wouldn't be doing this mini-website justice without listing some selected Burmilla Breeders. Here are some websites that I like. I can only filter breeders from their websites. Thereafter it is a matter of visiting, which is pretty much a must do (note sometimes people remove web pages and websites so although these are live links as at the date of the post they may no remain that way):

GEMS's and Araboth Burmillas and Asians
This is a well established cattery (about 9 years or more it seems) based in Polegate . This is on the south coast of England, a nice part of the country.

Burmilla Cat Club
This is a UK cat club with a fine list of Burmilla breeders in the UK. The link takes you straight to the breeders page.

Miamber Burmilla and Burmese

Located in the northern suburbs of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. A well established small hobby cattery - probably the best kind of cattery as profit is not usually the prime concern.

Aaralyn Cattery
Located in Wollstonecraft, New South Wales, Australia.

Note: I had difficulty, as you might realize, in finding many Burmilla Breeders. This is a relatively rare cat - ranked 9 out of 10 on my analysis of the rare cat breeds. I could not find a USA breeder. And I looked on the internet for a good 30 mins. The breeders mentioned were the easiest to find and the UK is possibly the place for Burmillas judging by the number of breeders there. I am sure that there are US breeders but they don't jump out at you on a Google search - sorry.

Burmilla Breeders to Burmese cat

Saturday 14 June 2008

The history of the domestic cat

Photo copyright polandeze - Abyssinian cat see below

The history of the domestic cat includes, this time, a brief look at the second national cat show in England at the fine Crystal Palace. It took place in early December 1871.

There were 349 entries. The competition was divided into 4 divisions: Short-haired cats, long-haired cats, "cats of no sex" and "working men's cats". A highly interesting and unusual classification by today's standards. "Cats of no sex" must mean altered cats (spayed and neutered) which implies that the other cats were not altered. This would equate with the neuter class at cat shows today, it seems.


The idea behind the 4th division was "to encourage the kind treatment of domestic cats". In 1871 cat fanciers were feeding their show cats the same kind of luxury food as now despite cats of that era being much more of a useful working animal catching mice and rodents for their keepers. One person fed 2 "smelts" (a small fish) "exquisitely" fried in breadcrumbs and a roast chicken leg.

Male Tortoiseshell

The number 1 cat of the show was a male tortoiseshell cat. He was described as the first and last of his kind. In other words an extremely rare cat. They are rare because of the manner in which the genetics work and are inherited. For a tortoiseshell cat to be male there has to be a genetic aberration or a foetal abnormality. They are still very rare as only females should be tortoiseshell but their rarity does not make them valuable.

The male tortoiseshell cat mentioned above took a prize of £1 and 10 shillings (£1-50) at the 1871 value. An interesting thing the author said was this.

Wild cat Hybrids

He referred to "hybrid wild cats" from that were in cages next to tabbies and which came from a Zoo (perhaps Regents Park zoo if it had been built by then). Are these domestic cat/wild cat hybrids or wild cat to wild cat hybrids? I would have thought the former and if so the first wild cat hybrids were not the Bengal cats of Jean Mill or the scientist experimenting on the Asian Leopard cat from whom she acquired her first hybrid but these perhaps.

Indeed in the Crystal Palace Show of 1873 the organizers made sure every possible type of domestic cat breed was represented including a new class being for any hybrid between domestic cat and wild cat. There were no entries that year but clearly they were well know enough for the organizer to make up a class for them in the competition. This predates the Bengal cat by almost exactly 100 years.

Abyssinian cat

The author usually described cats by their coat type. He does, though, mention an Abyssinian cat, called "Zeyla". The author says that an officer of the 102nd Fusiliers took the cat (but didn't say from where - presumed Abyssinia - to India and then to England. The author also said that this cat (described as a tabby cat) would drink from a cup with her paw a lot of the time.

This supports the stories of The history of the domestic cat in relation to the Abyssinian cat.

Bengal cat Canada

People search for Bengal cat Canada, what does it mean? Ans: Canadians want to find a Bengal cat of course! Canada being next to the home of the Bengal cat is well placed I guess. I made a posting on Bengal cat adoption. This linked page has lots of links on it to breeders and rescue centers etc. You name it you'll probably find it there. I hope anyway. One of the best links is probably the rescue center link which takes you to perhaps some unexpected areas. That is not to say there isn't a place for good Bengal cat breeders. 

Photo: Helmi Flick


I'll just list some top breeders here. Rosetta Cattery This is Bengal cattery is located in Burlington, Ontario, Canada (the link takes you to a Google map). I like this website, full of information and concern. One or two of the cattery's cats have been featured in the Baron's book on the Bengal cat. The Canadian Cat Association accepted the Bengal cat for championship status in 1995 and this cattery was there, right at the beginning, showing cats - a long history. They were showing cats before than under TICA and in 1991 one of their cats, Cleopatra, won Best Bengal Champion at a TICA show. Bundas Cattery Located Mount Forest, Ontario, Canada (opens to a Google map). This is another very impressive cattery website, full of information and some great pictures of the cattery itself. You don't often see that but I can see why - this is a big cattery with plenty of space. It is run by Grace Lush. I don't know her but I would expect a lot of people do in the cat fancy in Canada. Silkenthunder Bengals Of course these are my personal views but I have seen a lot of websites and cattery websites and this one is really nice. It has a thoroughly professional feel to it. They are located on the boundary of Winipeg surrounded by golf courses and a country club! The husband must play golf. They make the point that people wishing to adopt a Bengal cat really must be prepared to interact with their cat (i.e. give over some time) as this cat is interactive and likes a bit of action. If you prefer a cat more docile there are other purebreds more suitable, Persian, British Shorthair and Ragdoll come to mind but there are others. Christacats This one is on the other side of the country near Vancouver in Abbotsford. They have a lovely home in a fine position in wide open countryside - I'm jealous. There are more catteries of course. The ones listed are at the top of a Google listing and Google found the good ones but there are more good ones too. Bengal cat Canada to Bengal cats for sale

Featured Post

i hate cats

i hate cats, no i hate f**k**g cats is what some people say when they dislike cats. But they nearly always don't explain why. It appe...

Popular posts