Sunday 21 December 2008

Ussuri Cat

The Ussuri cat is described as "experimental". I have taken an almost desperate measure in reproducing the adjacent photograph without the author's permission. I have provided a link, however. It came from this web page: NUTRO.RU There is no substitute for a photograph. Although I do not know how representative of the breed this cat is. If the author wants me to remove the photo, I will, of course.

This rare cat breed is listed on a website of wild cat hybrid cat breeds. It is listed under "Rare and Experimental"on that site. That implies that this cat breed is being deliberately bred. This seems to be the case. It also implies that the breed may have some sort of recognition with a cat registry somewhere. The Ussuri cat is not registered with the Rare and Exotic Feline Registry and they deal with all manner of rare cat breeds. I list this cat breed on my page on Wildcat hybrids.

Anyway, this cat breed is meant to be a naturally occurring wildcat/domestic cat hybrid. Sometimes wildcats do mate with domestic cats. Two good examples are the Scottish wildcat and the American Bobtail. There is a fear that the purity of the Scottish Wildcat genes are being eroded by interbreeding with domestic cats (see another posting on the Scottish Wildcat). As to the Bobcat there are documented examples of matings with domestic cats, without, it seems, the interference of mankind (see American Bobcat Hybrids). Both these wildcats are small and of a similar size to the domestic cat. They are large domestic cats in appearance. The Amur Leopard Cat would seem to be of a similar size.

The Savannah cat, a man made wildcat hybrid of a mating between the Serval and a domestic cat is hard to breed. That is why, in part, they are so expensive. The Serval is a relatively small wildcat, quite a lot bigger than the Scottish Wildcat and far more rangy in conformation.

By contrast the Ussuri cat is meant to be a domestic Cat / Amur Asian Leopard Cat (Prionailurus bengalensis euptilura) hybrid (source: hybrid cat breeds website). Or, the Wikipedia author says it could be a hybrid of small wildcats called "Amur Forest Cats". I don't think Amur Forest Cats exist but I am prepared to be corrected. Perhaps it is just another name for the Amur Leopard Cat. The Amur Leopard Cat is not of course the same cat as the much larger Amur Leopard. Both the Amur Leopard and the smaller Amur Leopard cat are extremely rare and critically endangered, which would make matings with domestic cats all the rarer. Here is a picture of the Amur Leopard Cat at the Inokashira Zoo, Tokyo, Japan:

Amur Leopard Cat
Amur Leopard Cat - photo by kumachii - although there is no photograph of the Ussuri this small wildcat provides a strong clue as to the appearance as this cat is domestic tabby cat in appearance.

If the Ussuri cat still exists these are the main features (there are no pictures -- another reason to believe that this cat might not exist currently):

-- muscular but not massive

-- medium length legs

-- tail is ringed with a rounded dark tip

-- coat color and pattern is: merged spots, stripes, rings or spots and lines on forehead and cheeks, a line down the spine (dorsal stripe) on a gold/fawn background

-- bronze necklaces on chest and neck

-- lines on legs

-- lynx ears

For a skeptical person like myself this is describing a generic small wildcat.

Ussuri Cat to Domestic Cat

Photograph published under:


  1. Hi, I've been looking for Ussuri cat pictures a while ago and found one on the Russian Nutro site:

    They list this cat as "УССУРИЙСКАЯ КОШКА" (Ussuri cat). I'm not sure if this is a real Ussuri cat though as I've never investigated any further. It does look a little bit like a Bengal cat to me, but they list that breed separately as "БЕНГАЛЬСКАЯ КОШКА" with a different image.

  2. P.S. Here's the whole page with the Ussuri cat breed info:

    While I can make out Cyrillic letters to tell that they're talking about Ussuri cats, I sadly don't really know enough Russian to translate. The only thing I can make out is the year 1994, but I have no idea what significance it has.


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