Bengal Cat: Cat Breed Profile

by catfood

Characteristics, History, Care Tips, and Helpful Information for Pet Owners

Bengal cat are stunning, perceptive, and wild-appearing felines. The patterns and traits of this hybrid cat breed are making it more and more well-liked. It also retains a size similar to a large domestic house cat. The domestic house cat, such as an Abyssinian, Egyptian mau, or American shorthair, was bred with the Asian leopard cat, or Felcan be bengalensis, from which the term “Bengal” descended, to generate them.


Breed Overview

  • WEIGHT: 6 to 12 pounds
  • LENGTH: About a foot and a half
  • COAT: Short (although there is a long-haired variant)
  • COAT COLOR: Spotted or marbled coats with patterns outlined in black, chocolate, or gray/silver
  • EYE COLOR: Green or gold
  • LIFE EXPECTANCY: 12 to 15 years

Characteristics of the Bengal Cat

Affection LevelHigh
Exercise NeedsHigh
Energy LevelHigh
Tendency to VocalizeMedium
Amount of SheddingMedium

Historical background of Bengal

Bengal cats are considered to be hybrid felines. Due to its small size, approval as a pure breed by a number of other organizations, and significant history of breeding over three generations, Bengal cats are usually included in lists of large or exotic cat breeds (the first three generations look and act the wildest). In the UK, license requirements for Bengal cats were eliminated in 2007.

The Bengal cat hybrids were created in the 1970s by Jean Sudgen Mill, despite domestic cats and African leopard cats (ALCs) having already been married. Dr. Willard Centerwall, who was breeding hybrids at Loyola University in order to research their genetics, sold her many of the animals. She crossed the hybrids with domestic cats to create a breed with an exotic appearance and domestic cat mentality. Greg and Elizabeth Kent created a line of Bengal cats by mating African leopard cats and Egyptian maus.

The initial generation of hybrids, known as F1 hybrids, are often descended from hybrids with one parent being an African leopard cat. F2 and F3 would each have an ALC great-grandparent or grandparent. By F3, the cats are believed to have domestic cat temperaments. As evidence of this, the International Cat Association only accepts cats who are F4 or more generations removed from an ALC progenitor (TICA). Most Bengal cats in existence today are descendants of other Bengal cats.


Bengals are highly adored for their wild-looking markings. Although some Bengals exhibit leopard patterns including as rosettes, marbling, spots, and stripes, their official markings are frequently only classified as spotted or marbled. All of the patterns have a black, chocolate, or grey/silver outline.

The brownish tabby’s markings range from all colors of brown to black, and it commonly has background fur that is white on the chin, chest, abdomen, and inner legs.

The TICA first acknowledged Bengal cats as an experimental breed in 1983; full recognition came later, in 1993. The Cat Fancier’s Association recognized the Bengal cat as a breed in 2016. The registration has also received permission from the American Cat Fanciers Association, the Canadian Cat Association, the United Feline Organizations, and the Governing Council of the Cat Fancy.

Judicious bang

Bengal cats don’t need particular maintenance because they are several generations distant from the African leopard cat. They can be described as “house cats” that are bigger. Once a week brushing is suggested for cats to eliminate dead hair and avoid hairballs. Every two weeks, trim your cat’s nails, and provide him a scratching post. Because a cat will eventually quit using a dirty, stinky litter box, make sure it is always clean and fresh.

Bengal cats are busy animals and should have a climbing tree and places to sit so they can look around the room. Use engaging toys to keep your cat’s interest. You can teach your cat to “catch the laser dot” and retrieve stuff by playing with it.


Bengal cats are known to adore the water, a characteristic that most indoor cats lack. You might need to take extra care to prevent your aquarium from turning into a fishing pond.

A Bengal cat should only be kept indoors, just like any other cat. This guards them against contracting diseases from other animals, getting into conflicts, being attacked by predators, or being run over by vehicles.

This breed of dog and cat ought to get along well. However, if you have gerbils, hamsters, or guinea pigs as pets, you might discover your cat is stalking them. Cats should be kept as far away from their natural prey as possible.

Typical Health Issues

All domestic cat vaccinations and preventative healthcare procedures will be necessary for your Bengal cat. They lack the ALC ancestor’s resistance to the feline leukemia virus. Due to their smaller gene pools, purebred cat breeds are more susceptible to genetic issues than domestic cats of mixed breeds.

They might be more prone to contracting the following diseases:

  • Young kittens with autosomal recessive disorders experience early blindness.
  • Entropion (the rolling in of the eyelids)
  • A coronavirus infection causes feline infectious peritonitis, which is deadly in cats.

Eating habits and diet

Bengal cats eat cat chow, much as other domestic cats. It can be challenging to generalize, though. Many pet owners decide to feed their Bengal, which is from the first three generations, a grain-free or raw diet. The majority of owners concur that the most practical approach to feed Bengal cats is to buy prepared, grain-free chow. Black silver tabby, seal silver sepia tabby, seal silver mink tabby, and seal silver lynx point are additional coat colors in addition to the most common brown tabby.


  • Bengal cats have a wild appearance and are intelligent exotic cats.
  • Water is a known favorite of Bengal cats.
  • Bengal cats and dogs ought to get along nicely.


  • Make sure your Bengal doesn’t intimidate or remove the fish from your aquarium if you have one.
  • Bengals shouldn’t be kept close to small rodent pets since they might stalk or pounce on them.
  • Both lethal coronavirus infections and ocular issues are common in Bengals.

Where to locate a Bengal cat for adoption or sale

Locally, you might be able to get a pure-breed Bengal cat, but if you’d prefer to adopt through a rescue group, look into:

  • GLBT Rescue Great Lakes Bengal Rescue
  • CatFoodSite offers pet adoption

Cat Breeds Not Listed Here and Additional Research

Do a ton of research before deciding that you want a Bengal cat. Consult other Bengal cat owners, reputable breeders, and organizations like the Great Lakes Bengal Rescue that assist Bengal cats in need. Although it’s improbable, it doesn’t harm to look for Bengal cats in shelters.

Take a look at these for comparison if you’re interested in other cat breeds with a similar wild appearance:

  • Savannah Cat, Egyptian Mau

Cats come in a broad variety of shapes and sizes. You ought to be able to locate the best one with a little investigation.

READ NEXT: Domestic Mixed-Breed Cat (Moggie): Cat Breed Profile




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