The Joys and Hazards of Keeping a Pet Bengal Cat

Updated on July 17, 2018
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Theophanes is a New England-based blogger, traveler, writer, photographer, sculptor, and lover of life.

An adult Bengal with the well-known and popular rosette coat patterning.
An adult Bengal with the well-known and popular rosette coat patterning. | Source

Wild Animal or Domestic Cat?

Although there are a lot of Bengal cat breed enthusiast websites, reputable breeder sites, and organization sites like that of The International Cat Association (TICA) or The Cat Fanciers' Association, few describe what living with a Bengal is really like. In this article, I hope to educate readers on the breed's personality, instinctive behavior, reproduction and breeding, sociability with children and dogs, health issues, and more. Most importantly, I'll share my story about what it's like to live with Bengals as pets. Whether you recently acquired a kitten or you are simply a cat breed fancier, discover what a charming handful of a house cat these sprightly balls of fur can be.

Do Bengals Make Good House Pets?

The breed possesses the following unique attributes and is known for being:

  • Trainable
  • Intelligent
  • Water-loving
  • Exotic in appearance
  • Verbal and communicative
  • Athletic and entertaining
  • Social (if paired or bonded early)
  • Dog-friendly (if bonded early with a cat-friendly dog)
  • Kid-friendly (when socialized)
  • Loyal

The Asian leopard cat or "Prionailurus bengalensis" of the continental South, Southeast, and East Asia, is an ancestor of the breed.
The Asian leopard cat or "Prionailurus bengalensis" of the continental South, Southeast, and East Asia, is an ancestor of the breed. | Source

What Is the Origin of the Bengal Breed?

The Asian Leopard Cat and Domestic Cat Cross

Bengals originated from crossbreeding or mixing domestic cats with the wild Asian leopard cat or Prionailurus bengalensis (a type of small wildcat or jungle cat). The purpose of this breeding was to obtain a cat with the disposition of a domesticated cat but with the wild and crazy markings of the Asian leopard cat.

Not to be mislabeled as the "Bengali cat" (Bengali or Bengal being the language of the region) or misleadingly named the Bengal "tiger" cat (Bengal tiger being a distinct species), the domesticated Bengal is a hardy cross of both wild and domestic species. These hybrids (typically termed F1s for "foundation" to denote the first generation, F2, and F3 thereafter) were bred across numerous generations. The result was a stunningly beautiful, fiercely intelligent, and often quirky cat that could be kept in the household as a pet. Now Bengals are a recognized breed and can be shown at cat shows and sold legally in all 50 states.

Some common traits of the breed like personality and patterning may carry over into half Bengal-tabby cat or kitten mixes, Bengal-Siamese mixes, Bengal-British Shorthair mixes, and other common domestic blends.

Adapted from CatTime.com. Trait rating is from 1-5; 1 being lowest, and 5 being the highest probability.
Adapted from CatTime.com. Trait rating is from 1-5; 1 being lowest, and 5 being the highest probability. | Source

Breed Information and Traits

  • Lifespan: 10–16 years
  • Size: 8–15 pounds or 3.6–6.8 kilograms
  • Body type: Long, muscular, and medium to large in size
  • Ancestry: Asian leopard cat (Prionailurus bengalensis) and domestic tabby (or Siamese mix if of the "snow" variety)
  • Coat type: Dense, soft, silky; sometimes described as "glittered"
  • Coat patterns: Spotted or bull's eye, marble, or rosette
  • Hypoallergenic: Mildly to highly hypoallergenic
  • Shedding and grooming: Low shedding; low grooming requirements
  • Activity level: High; active and athletic
  • Sociability: High; dog-friendly and kid-friendly if socialized early; vocal

Bengal Cat Temperament, Personality, and Behavior Traits

Bengals are probably the most intelligent cats I've come across, even occasionally outwitting the cunning Siamese. Because of their intense intelligence and wild ancestry, they tend to have some pretty strange behavioral quirks.

They Have an Affinity for Water

Like their ancestors, they adore the water. Almost every Bengal will have some sort of overriding obsession with water. They often drink by dipping their paw into the water bowl and licking it off rather than just drinking straight from the dish like the average house cat. They've also been known to play in water whenever they can, splashing water out of their bowl, interrupting their humans while they're showering or bathing, and displaying an almost painful delight at playing with running fountains and faucets. People with fish should also beware that some enjoy pawing around the tank and catching goldfish.

People with fish should be aware that some Bengals enjoy pawing around the tank and catching goldfish.

Video: They Love to Play in Water

They Are Highly Intelligent

Bengals are a very active breed. Add their high IQ or intelligence to this, and you generally have a recipe for trouble. No amount of toys will ever keep them happy. They'll always get bored one day and venture off to find something to get into. They're known for stealing random objects and running off with them, destroying anything they think is expensive or precious, and staring down other animals just for giggles.

They Are Excellent Hunters

Because of their wild heritage, they are phenomenal fishers and efficient hunters. The only way to curb them from this particular tendency is to expose them to small animals constantly while they are kittens. This being said, it's still advised only to train them with the strictest precautions as accidents are always capable of happening. (They are animals after all.)

Owners should always supervise Bengals around small animals such as birds, rodents, and other household pets.

They Are Territorial

The breed is fiercely territorial and can get nasty, which means that if you want to have more then one, you should get a pair (or have other cats already living in the home) from the start. Otherwise, introductions can be hard. They generally do not like big changes in their environment and should always have a box, cat tree, or crate that they can retreat to and hide in when they feel stressed out. They should also be kept inside due to the dangers they face in the outdoors and the dangers they pose to local wildlife.

They Are Affectionate

Bengals are an affectionate breed if raised properly. They tend to love their humans and act rather dog-like—playing games like fetch and following their owners. They are also trainable and can learn basic commands like "sit" and "stay." Careful though, they can learn bad behaviors from watching their human like how to turn door knobs, how to turn on faucets, and how to flush the toilet repeatedly.

They Are Vocal

New owners should also note one of the breed's most adorable characteristics: their pathetic kitten meow. They're a verbal breed and do love to meep, mew, and meow at their humans on all occasions. They talk a lot!

The average selling price of cats and kittens as adapted from the Bengal Cat Club website.
The average selling price of cats and kittens as adapted from the Bengal Cat Club website. | Source

How Much Do Bengal Cats Cost?

Bengals are expensive and might be one of the most expensive cat breeds in the world. According to the Bengal Cat Club, their value depends on their generation rating. Recall the "foundational" generation ratings. A female kitten from an F1 generation (with a direct Asian leopard cat parent) can cost anywhere from $2,000 to $10,000 USD. An F1 male, in contrast, sells for $1,500 because they are born sterile. F2 and F3 generations can cost anywhere from $1,500 to $5,000 USD.

Coat color and patterning, of course, also factor into their value. The snow Bengal is considered to have the rarest coat type, and spotted types are also high in popularity.

Why Adopt or Rescue?

Besides saving a life, adopted or rescued Bengals can be acquired for $150-200 USD.

Breeder Pricing Quick Reference

Generation
Parents
Estimated Selling Price
F1 Female
Asian leopard cat parent
$2,000 to $10,000 USD
F1 Male
Asian leopard cat parent
$1,500 *always sterile
F2/F3
Bengal x Bengal cross
$1,500 to $5,000 USD
Rescue/Adoption
Often Bengal x Bengal cross
$150-200 USD
Information adapted from the Bengal Cat Club website.
Coloring and coat patterning varies among the breed.
Coloring and coat patterning varies among the breed. | Source

Bengal Cat Appearance and Characteristics

The breed is highly varied in appearance in terms of coat color and patterning. Eye color and even weight can vary greatly from individual to individual. Still, Bengals maintain a certain distinction in the cat world for being the bulkiest of the breeds in terms of pure muscle mass. The males, in particular, have thick, enormous muscles that ripple underneath their shimmering coats.

Why Are They Popular Pets?

Their most unique feature, of course, is their elegant coat. Most people think of spots when they think of a Bengal, but they also don marble and rosette coat types. Rosetting is what causes some individuals to have spots which look more like doughnuts than dots; in other words, the rosetting is comprised of spots with two colors (brown or black spots with rust or orange inside or surrounding). Marbling is a form of horizontal striping, a fascinating variety of swishes and swirls on the side and back of the body. Swirls that look like cinnamon buns are actually a default if you're showing a cat, but they are still gorgeous. Here is a breakdown of the specific coat pattern types:

  • Arrowhead rosette: triangular spots pointed distally; fades toward the tail
  • Doughnut rosette: outlined spots with a darker interior compared to the full coat color
  • Pawprint rosette: c-shaped or dappled spots, punctuated with half open and dark outlines
  • Marble: random patterning and swirls; patterning continues to change within the first few years of life

Variations in Coat Type

Bengal coat colors include brown (orange-brown to cool-brown with black spots or marbling), snow (cream-colored body with dark tan spots or marbling), silver (metallic-silver with black spots or marbling), charcoal brown or charcoal (dark face mask and cape), and melanistic (black with darker black spots or marbling). The snow variety comes in either lynx point, mink, or sepia. Lynx point is the lightest of the snow variety, presenting with light markings on the points (ears and nose), and the sepia variety is of a soft tan coloration with pronounced accents. Melanistic fur and blue (dilute) fur are occasionally seen but are not recognized by cat clubs. Blues are almost always (if not always) crosses.

Eye Color and Coat Color Pairings

The breed is noted for its "mascara" (horizontal striping lateral to the eyes) and striking eye color—anything from a deep copper-gold to a startling minty green, to brilliant yellow and ice blue (depending on the ancestral breeds used and whether or not the breeders in their lines have decided to concentrate on improving eye color or not). Brown Bengals often have gold or green eyes, or a hybridization of the two; lynx points have blue eyes, and mink, with slightly darker cream to tan fur, have blue eyes as well. Sepia types again have green or gold eyes, or a combination of these eye colors; their fur is slightly lighter than your standard brown coloration.

Common and Uncommon Coat Colors and Patterns

Coat Color
Description
Patterning
Brown
Orange to cool-brown with light to black spots; charcoal brown (darkest)
Rosettes or marbling
Snow
Cream-colored body with dark tan spots
Dark tan spots or marbling; lynx is the lightest, with highlights on the standout features (ears and nose)
Silver
Metallic silver with black spots; no brown coloration
Black spots or marbling
*Melanistic
Solid brown with muted markings; black with darker black spots
Black spots or marbling
*Blue
Grey with occasional peach undertones
Spotted or marbled
*Not recognized by most cat clubs. Information adapted from Wildrose Bengals.
The breed is prone to several hereditary health conditions.
The breed is prone to several hereditary health conditions. | Source

What Are Common Health Issues in Bengals?

Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy or HCM

Bengals are prone to a heart condition called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy or HCM, otherwise known as "the silent killer." This form of heart disease is often inherited and may even be recessive or dormant in both parents. The disease can, therefore, pop up after generations of breeding. The condition leads to abnormal thickening of heart wall muscles, related thrombosis (or blood clots), and congestive heart failure. Initial clinical signs include arrhythmias or heart murmurs, which can be detected during auscultation in a physical exam. HCM is diagnosed via radiographs or an echocardiogram.

Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) and Cataracts

Both progressive retinal atrophy or PRA and cataracts are two hereditary eye conditions commonly seen in the breed. Retinal atrophy refers to a photoreceptor disorder—the wasting of the photoreceptors of the eyes—and leads to premature blindness. Responsible breeders should test their Bengals for PRA before breeding.

Cataracts are also a common issue; cataracts occur when the lens of the eye becomes increasingly cloudy over time.

Anesthetic Allergies

Some individuals are sensitive to anesthetic agents, which makes them "high-risk" anesthetic patients. Specialty clinics that are accustomed to handling complex anesthetic cases can often manage your cat's surgery appropriately.

Luxating Patellas

This condition is generally a result of an inherited malformation. Bengals are prone to luxating patellas, and it doesn't help that they are so active. In a healthy knee, the kneecap usually sits in a groove called the trochlear groove. When a knee "luxates," it pops out of place or dislocates entirely; this leads to sudden or prolonged lameness and degenerative arthritis. Luxating patellas can be managed by keeping a cat within a healthy weight range. Otherwise, surgery is often recommended.

Kidney Issues or Renal Failure

Chronic renal failure is not a condition specific to the breed, but it is a disease worth noting because it is so common in older cats. Chronic kidney issues are often first characterized by an increase in thirst and urination and commonly present in older cats. Kidney infections and stones put cats at a higher risk of long-term kidney issues; this susceptibility also compounds with age. Your veterinarian can perform diagnostic tests to screen for kidney issues.

Skin and Coat Issues

Psychogenic alopecia or over-grooming causes hair loss in all cats. It is a similar condition to obsessive-compulsive disorder in humans. The condition is generally triggered by psychological disturbances such as boredom, new household stressors, and similar drivers. Hair loss may also occur from flea allergies, environmental allergies, food allergies, and dermatitis.

Video: How to Cat-Proof Your Home

Dos and Don'ts: Caring for and Raising Your Cat or Kitten

This is some of the best advice I can offer when it comes to raising your Bengal kitten or taking care of your adult house cats:

  • Get Your Cat Spayed, Neutered, or Sterilized: If the Bengal is not going to be used for breeding purposes, your male or female should be fixed by a veterinarian before it reaches sexual maturity. This helps to prevent them from marking territory by spraying and avoiding the litter box. (Once this behavior starts, it's a hard habit to kick in both males and females.)
  • Offer Many, Many Toys: Keep lots of toys out and put anything precious and destructible away!
  • Put the Toilet Lid Down: Keep the lid to the toilet down so they don't have an excuse to start flushing it.
  • Place Water Dishes Thoughtfully: Put their water dish on Linoleum or tile floor if possible to make cleanup easier.

It’s critical that kittens have good experiences in many new environments with many new people and animals so that, later in life, they don’t consider the new environments, people, and animals to be stressors. Their prime time for socialization is between 3 weeks to 3 months of age.

— Dr. Sophia Yin
  • Socialize Your Kitten Early: Are Bengals good with kids? Yes, but an important part of raising your kitten is to socialize them early on with as many people as possible—kids included—to prevent your cat from becoming overly loyal and affectionate towards one person and developing additional personality problems. (Believe me, once they bond in this manner, they're usually petrified of everyone else for no reason at all.)
  • Introduce Them to Other Pets: Are Bengals good with dogs? Yes, but if you're going to have other pets like a dog, make sure you get your cat used to them while it's still a kitten.
  • Expect Chaos: Never expect a lap cat or a perfectly behaved pet. They're going to start trouble sooner or later, you just don't know how or when.
  • Consider Agility Training: If you want a weird hobby, try agility training your cat. Yes, there are tournaments for cat agility now and Bengals take the place of Border Collies as the most popular breed in agility.
  • Make Them Indoor-Only: Please keep all cats, not just Bengals, inside at all times. It's a big, bad world out there and everyone's better off in the house. Plus, they are less likely to be exposed to viruses like feline leukemia (FeLV) or feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV). If you want to bring them outside, Bengals are easily harness trained.

Left: Sophra trying to pet Oscar (Note: Do not try this at home!). Upper right: Sophra. Bottom right: Regular brown-spotted male, Howl, showing off his lovely coat.
Left: Sophra trying to pet Oscar (Note: Do not try this at home!). Upper right: Sophra. Bottom right: Regular brown-spotted male, Howl, showing off his lovely coat. | Source

My Experience Living With Bengals

So, you still think you want a Bengal? They certainly are special. Once you go Bengal, you tend never to go back. They're just that unique! However, caring for one is like having a wrecking ball with a warped sense of humor in your home. Now it's time you hear some stories of my little rabble-rousers.

Meet My Male: Howl

Howl, as a kitten and an adult cat, continuously gets trapped in garbage cans, empty small animal and bird cages, cat carriers, and even closets, cupboards, and cabinets. Now that he's an adult, he can usually find his way out, but when he was a kitten, there was a rescue mission almost daily. Currently, he likes draining his bowl while Sophra repeatedly flushes the toilet.

My adult female marbled-snow Bengal, Sophra, singing.
My adult female marbled-snow Bengal, Sophra, singing.

Meet My Female: Sophra

I got Sophra as soon as she was weaned, but even before I brought her home, she started to show her true colors. She was out running around the breeder's house getting some exercise when we suddenly heard a horrible thump. There was Sophra, a little kitten at the bottom of the stairs. She fell off the banister and hit the hardwood floor with her nose, not her feet. It broke. Since then, her nose has always been dented.

Right after I brought her home she started manipulating me. She would only eat if I was standing there watching her, and since I didn't want her to starve, I caved for this cunning game of hers.

When she grew older, I started to believe my house had a poltergeist. Random objects would disappear never to be seen again—children's plush toys, bottles, hair ties, cough drops, hard candy, elastics, yarn—and anything that was light enough to lug off. Occasionally, I'd find them stashed in bizarre places.

My pet sitter once had a nasty surprise when she was staying over to take care of the animals. She pulled up the covers on the bed only to find that Sophra had plucked a pincushion dry and spread pins and sewing needles all throughout the blankets and sheets. (It's my personal belief that she did it to hear the pet sitter scream. She's funny like that.)

Why I Love My Cats

Still, I adore the two. I raised them from kittens and they keep me on my toes. Sophra can usually be seen darting full speed through the house with hard candy dangling from her mouth. We haven't had candy dishes out for more than a year, likely two. When Sophra gets bored of the candy, she likes to jump up on the furniture in the wee morning hours and push everything she can off like a little bulldozer. It doesn't matter if its paperwork or knickknacks, she'll still watch it fall with amazement. So, what do you think? Too much personality for you?

Top-Rated Male and Female Bengal Cat Names

Name
Significance
Amber
Yellow, orange, or brown fossilized resin.
Blaze
An extremely powerful fire or a distinguishable mark (a streak).
Bongo
An Afro-Cuban percussive instrument.
Cheetah
A large, spotted cat native to Africa.
Cheeto
A Bengal cat and Ocicat cross, or a cheesy, spicy chip.
Coco
Derivative of cocoa powder.
Copper
A reddish-orange metal.
Chili
A hot fruit of the Capsicum family.
Dot
A small, circular mark.
Garfield
The cat of the 1978 comic chronicles "Garfield."
Ginger
A zesty, hot spice.
Honey
A sweet substance produced by bees and pollinators.
Paprika
A ground spice made from peppers.
Pepper
Dried fruit used for spice/seasoning.
Leo
Lion; 5th astrological sign of the zodiac.
Max
Short for Maximilian, "the greatest."
Mowgli
The protagonist of "The Jungle Book Series."
Salem
Fictional cat character in film; historic town(s).
Simba
The protagonist of Disney's "Lion King."
Speckles
Patches of color; spots.
Spot
A circular dot.
Tarzan
The protagonist of Disney's "Tarzan."
Teddy
Nickname for the plush teddy bear.
Tiger
The largest of the felid cat family; a striped feline.
Tigger
A fictional character in the "Winnie-the-Pooh" series.
Xena
A princess warrior.
Although cats act "wild," it's a good idea to keep them indoors at all times.
Although cats act "wild," it's a good idea to keep them indoors at all times. | Source

Do Bengals Make Bad Pets?

Once I was foolhardy enough to babysit for a small Bengal cattery. I brought the cats to my home and let them run around one room. The litter consisted of two tomcats who had to be separated from each other (as they did not grow up together and you know how tomcats usually are), four adult females, and two six-month-old kittens. These were cattery-raised cats that did not know the comforts of a home (and you could tell!) They were wild!

Dealing With Cat Fights

I let one of the males run around and stuffed the other one in a large cage so that they wouldn't kill each other. Little was I to know that this angry 25-pound male would find a way to break out of an impenetrable cage within hours of being put in it. I ran into the room when I heard the most horrendous screams ever. The two tomcats were beating the piss out of each other and fur was flying everywhere. I couldn't just grab one without being mortally wounded, so I reached for whatever was nearest to me, a broom, and started to beat them into separate corners. After that, I was stuck with the problem of getting the giant male back in the cage.

This male was enormous. His neck was so thick with muscles that I couldn't grab his scruff (he didn't have one), though I tried desperately. This resulted in 25 pounds of writhing, angry muscle dangling from my arm by the teeth. When he finally let go, I had to pin him to the floor by sitting on him, but this too failed and he ran off. I had to chase him with a broom to get him back into the cage. He escaped unscathed, but I ended up with a nasty scar.

Dealing With Destructive Cats

Every day I'd go in to check on the cats, I'd find something else broken on the floor—bowls, unidentifiable glass objects (which I still haven't a clue where they came from), light bulbs, lamps, and toys. The curtains were shredded, and the 5-gallon water cooler had been emptied out onto the floor. After a month, I was more than ready to send the hellions home! Never again will I take on caring for an adult cattery or cage-raised Bengals!

Quiz: Should I Get a Bengal Cat?

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Video: What to Know Before Buying This Breed

Questions & Answers

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      • profile image

        bob Holt 

        10 days ago

        I have a neighbours bengal cat terrorising my cat and specifically kitten. It has also taken a chunk out of my daughters boyfriends leg. Nothing deters it. It comes through me window or door to get at the kitten. I am very dubious about the breed. I have had cats for more than 25 years and have never encountered this, including having many feral cats around my house in Italy.

      • profile image

        Sylvia 

        11 days ago

        Will my 3yr old Siamese lady ever except a Siamese/Bengal kitten I bought as a companion at the moment my Siamese hates the kitten the kitten is adorable and a handful this is the first time I've come across a Bengal he never stops he's 12seems old

      • profile image

        Megan 

        2 weeks ago

        Not sure who wrote this but I wouldn't put vocalization as a 2...they are very talkative and loud! It is one of the reasons many people who get a bengal can't live with them or end up letting them outside.

      • profile image

        Aaron347 

        2 weeks ago

        Hello, I recently adopted a 8 year old Bengal and had a question about biting. The previous owner had not gotten any vaccinations for her because she claimed she was an “indoor cat” and didn’t need them. A couple of times while petting her she’s randomly nipped at me and almost broken skin. Is this something I should be worried about or is this Bengal behavior. Thank you

      • profile image

        Daphne 

        6 weeks ago

        Thank you so much for your reply, it was very reassuring. He was a stray who was rejected by all the local rescue organisations because he was considered so vicious, so we took him in, albeit reluctantly! Now, I can't tell you how much we love him. He had IMHA when he arrived (which resulted in a huge vet bill!) and this has made me a bit paranoid about his health. But he does seem to be very healthy. He is a wonderful cat, who has blown all my prejudices away, and who is obviously very happy we found each other. I never realised cats could be so affectionate!

      • Theophanes profile imageAUTHOR

        Theophanes Avery 

        7 weeks ago from New England

        Thanks for stopping by Daphne! If your cat is on a meat only diet he's not going to need to drink nearly as much water as a cat eating kibble as most of his water intake is going to be in the moisture of his food. Of course you should always leave water out (maybe see if he prefers a fountain of running water?) But unless he's getting dehydrated I wouldn't worry too much about it. Good luck!

      • profile image

        Daphne 

        7 weeks ago

        Having been a life long anti cat person, I have been shown the error of my ways by a beautiful Bengal who has turned me into a pathetic slave! Now I know what all the fuss is about. But...he does not like water! I can't even get him to drink it unless it has had fish cooked in it. I bought a cat fountain, played with the hosepipe, everything. He has a meat and fish only diet (no biscuits or any dried food) and I always add a little water, and I give him milk for cats, but does anyone have any suggestions to get him to drink water?

      • profile image

        Chelsie Odom 

        2 months ago

        I got a snow lynx Bengal kitten 1 week ago. Her name is Sasha!! She is going on 14 weeks, she is so cute. very energetic. Everytime I eat she loves to get all up in my business. and she likes to be a parrot and sit on our shoulders. I also have 2 blue heelers. they love cats. lol

      • profile image

        buenos 

        4 months ago

        "Never again will I take on caring for an adult cattery or cage raised Bengal!"

        - could you elaborate? Would home-raised bengals behave differently than cage-raised ones? How much so? Even if you buy them as a 3mo old kitten? Or was your comment about adopting an adult cat?

      • profile image

        No 

        4 months ago

        My bengal was horrible. He pooped in the toaster.

      • profile image

        Carla 

        5 months ago

        You accurately described my Bengal to a T! Ozzy is a handful but we adore him.

      • Theophanes profile imageAUTHOR

        Theophanes Avery 

        5 months ago from New England

        Purchasing Bengals when they are kittens does make a huge difference in bonding. Often these are "one person" cats who bond with one human and if they're later put up for adoption as an adult they can easily revert to being skittish or completely feral. Sad but true. They are a big responsibility!

      • profile image

        Someone with a dream of having a Bengal cat 

        5 months ago

        When I grow up and I have enough money I'm going to buy a Bengal cat. They are so pretty though!

      • profile image

        My bengal is so sweet 

        5 months ago

        They are very high energy. And love to climb, everything. But she loves to cuddle. She loves water. And she loves to hide stuff, I enjoy her. I got her as a baby, maybe thats the difference.

      • profile image

        lol 

        6 months ago

        you people are crazy i just got my little silver bengal girl for free shes so cute and has the best temperment ever seen

      • profile image

        Shana 

        7 months ago

        Hey everyone! I'm about 24 hours away from placing my deposit for a little boy who will be ready in February.

        I recently had to put my 15 year old tabby down and while I'm quite familiar with cats he topped out at 30lbs and acted more like a sarcastic old guy for the most part. I plan on doing everything possible to provide creative/energy outlets etc. I've chosen a reputable, certified breeder and am researching.

        Should I be planning on trading my luxury decor for a "cat house"??? I'm expecting to take loses along the way like I did with Challice (15 yr old cat) when he was younger and am very familiar with cat-life but is this a different animal? (pun intended!)

        Any insight is appreciated!

        Thanks

      • profile image

        John Snow 

        7 months ago

        Good article - yep that's life with a Bengal lol. From personal experience with my little man, he started using his teeth & claws immeditely after I got him & I put up with it until he was about 6 months then a little flick to the nose or a stern poke & point is the best way to establish a no. He's forsure a one person cat(mine heheh) so when company comes over of course since he's so beautiful they want to touch & give em love but they don't get it, I mean he already gets enough from me (;.

        -super curious & active always in my way trying to see what I'm doing & following me around/ always trying to play.

        -Absolutely loves water like straight up won't even drink out of his water bowl Because he has to have it fresh from the tap & yes he will wake me up in the mornings for it ehh.

        -When it comes to electronics he's the most curious cat I've ever seen, you should see his fascination with my printer lol.

        - forsure loves to sink his little teeth into whatever he can get ahold of either leaving teeth prints or destroying it so watch out for your shoes/ expensive leather stuff.

        - it's soooo true about their little "meews" my guy is over a year now & still sounds like a liiil bb kitty, to note when I first got him he would wake me up eveyday @6 just to meeew loudly for no reason so I'm glad he eventually grew out of that.

        -is a snuggler loves to be under the covers.

        * my Snow Bengal is a little sh1t but god I love em*

      • profile image

        Jan 

        10 months ago

        I do believe I have the most wonderful and handsome Bengal ever born. Neopold. My son purchased him and he immediately began to trash my son's new leather couch and he was hiding and seriously attacking anyone passing by. As far as Neopold was concerned it was "no holds barred" and he was having the time of his life. He had the whole family terrified. Needless to say mom inherited the wayward one. Here is my advice for unacceptable behavior. I do no hit animals but a squirt bottle with water is a wonderful way to re-enforce a firm "NO". Also, Neopold an I could be having a good time playing or napping quietly on the couch and he would "out of the blue" jump on one of my arms or legs and try to do serious damage. Water squirts seemed to only enrage him more. I really believe now he was trying to scare me. My Bengal has a very very strong personality. How I addresses the attacks was to grab him up. Saying no no of course, and that was unacceptable behavior and put him in the laundry room for an hour or so. Now if I look at him and his ears are flatten backward I say " do you want to go to the laundry room" I have often wondered if all Bengals are like this. The banishment to the laundry room took a year or so, before I saw real improvement, but he had never corrected for dangerous an destructive behavior. Another by-product, Neopold does not climb in table or shelves knocking things off. He doesn't steal thing either. The greyhound does that.

      • profile image

        Olga 

        13 months ago

        i started breeding Oriental Short Hair cats since 2010 and after 2 years we accepted our first Bengal female, and now I'm specializing in charcoal silver color for Bengal cats.

        http://cataristocrat.com/

      • Theophanes profile imageAUTHOR

        Theophanes Avery 

        15 months ago from New England

        Actually I am the original author and the photos were taken by myself of my cats. This article has been plagiarized so frequently I stopped bothering to ask people to take it down. Look at the date it was posted (and the date of y our wiki article) and you will realize this is true.

      • db1 profile image

        db1 

        15 months ago

        None of this information is original. It is all plagiarized. Credit your sources.

      • db1 profile image

        db1 

        15 months ago

        The info in this post is plagiarized from Wiki and other cat sites, except for the made-up anecdotal info written by Theophanes. It is complete crap.

      • profile image

        Linda Bates 

        17 months ago

        How can I train a Bengal cat pls I need some answers for my Christmas gift a Bengal cat its my 1st time

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        Feleshia 

        19 months ago

        I have a half Bengal half Mainecoon he is huge (very long) his name is Oliver him and his brother both have heart murmurs Oliver loves his toys and climbing post and totally loves his water to the point I leave it dripping for him in the bathroom..... If Oliver can't see us at night he will howl untill we let him in he is the most playfull living furbaby ever he will cuddle up to me or I'll hold on in my arms on the bed belly up and run his head he sings the most beautiful purring song ever when he is with his momma !!!!!! He loves to carry things off

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        Meg Francoeur 

        22 months ago

        I have a kitten who doesn't look like a bengal but I think she either read about one, or saw one on TV as she has all the crazy behaviors of yours!! She doesn't quite swim, but she doesn't really fear water much, she leaps up doorways and walls......just because......eats ANYTHING...and I mean anything....and pretty much creates havoc wherever she goes.....she's bengal by proxy!

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        Harley 

        23 months ago

        Please post their need for raw meat as well-- a lot of breeders won't post that they have strict dietary needs because it makes people less likely to buy them with the effort and expenses. We rescued a stray fourth generation domestic mix and he died of organ failure from lack of proper protein. They cannot live on plain cat food.

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        Caterina 

        2 years ago

        Hello! Thank you so much for all this information. I was wondering if you could answer a question ... We live in the countryside in France and we're thinking of getting two Bengals. However we have a large pond on our property, in which swim 3 koi fish. The fish are friendly and trusting, so they swim near the edge all the time, and would be easily accessible to a patient predator. So the question is, do you think that an adult Bengal would be able to kill a large koi fish? Or can they only kill small fish like goldfish. Thank you for your guidance! — Caterina

      • Sasha the Cat profile image

        Sasha the Cat 

        2 years ago

        Many Bengals ARE nice, lovely pets, but I have a nasty experience with a huge one! It was running loose on the streets (not my cat, someone else's) and found and killed my cat, Sasha (I know that's my name on this. I like the name and loved her, even though I got some nasty scratches from this ill-tempered cat)! I also had two other cats and a beloved dog (she didn't chase cats). The dog was the closest to Sasha. I'd love it if the creator replied to this. I wanted to call animal control to take it away, but I never did and I have no idea why.

      • ann trent profile image

        Ann Urmson 

        2 years ago from United Kingdom

        I'm new to the Bengal world, only having had the normal domestic cat. We now have a gorgeous Bengal boy named Blaze. We got him when he was 8 weeks he hid under the settee for a couple of days having sneaky peaks at his new world. He has settled well now playing constantly with my Yorkie dog and my big ginger tom. We didnt realise how so different they are compared to the average cat, we have had so much entertainment watching him play and slowly wreck my house, he is like a tornado running wild. He makes up with it when he comes for his kisses and cuddles all is forgiven he is so loving. Follows me about like a dog, comes when he's told amazes me, he come to the loo with me doesnt like me out of site. His diet consists of cooked chicken, ham, fish, he has one satchet of cat food per day any more than that he gets a bad tummy, so feed him fresh and biscuits.He has three meals aday then biscuits for during night. He is very good no crying at night so let lucky with him. He is now 4mths and weighs in at 2.7kg (5lbs 9) so he is getting there pleased with that. Hope hes not too big for his age but he's not fat all muscle. If buying another cat it would have to be a Bengal love him so much. Im waffling now so if anyones in any doubt about buying one and if you have time and dont mind a little tornado wrecking your house plenty of love and enjoyment comes your way.

      • ann trent profile image

        Ann Urmson 

        2 years ago from United Kingdom

        I am new to the Bengal world. I have a 16week male named Blaze. Didn't quite realize how much of a handful they are, I have always had the normal domestic cat which are quite docile compared to the Bengal. When we first got him he would hide under the settee but after a couple of days settled. He is a joy I have more entertainment watching him playing with my little yorkie and my big ginger tom who took him about 5 weeks to accept him, but now they are like men in arms. He weighed in today at 2.7kg (5lbs 9) so think he is a good weight for his age I hope? If buying another cat it would have to be a Bengal even though it is like having a little tornado in the house. All is forgiven when he gives me a kiss and a cuddle.

      • burmesecat profile image

        Chris 

        3 years ago from Australia

        I have heard that Bengals are great cats! They look like a lot of fun! Great article thanks,

      • profile image

        blueflame 

        3 years ago

        This is the best and most accurate article on Bengals I have ever read. I adopted a 6 year old Bengal cat from a cattery who was retired from breeding. He is close to twenty pounds of solid, hyper muscle. He's very affectionate but can be territorial with my female cat who is easily half his size, which is something I have to manage. He has two speeds, asleep and chaotic tornado. I had no idea what I was getting myself into! But, he is just the most gorgeous and friendly cat. People often come over to my house just to see him :)

      • Theophanes profile imageAUTHOR

        Theophanes Avery 

        3 years ago from New England

        Sounds like you got your hands full Anna! Thanks for dropping by and sharing your story. Bengals really are magical little beings. ;)

      • profile image

        Anna 

        3 years ago

        Wonderful! I have a 1 year old melanistic bengal. His name is Nova and he is probably one of the best cats I've had... other than my cat Chevy, who is a manx cat. I will admit he is the first bengal that I know who is not fond of water but he loves to make a mess of his water dish all the time. He is a kleptomaniac and has stolen many things... he seems to have a great taste for expensive jewelery, keys, and sweaters. When he was 7 months old, he tried to drag a sweater down the hallway to his bedroom, the sweater was bigger than him and weighed about as much at the time... but now he's a 16lb bugger that hasn't even grown into his skin yet. He constantly harrasses his brother but when the sun hits him, he has the most beautiful spots and stripes that you can just start seeing if the light is right... would I get another bengal yes, but I would make sure to have a bigger house so that when he decides to zoom around like a race car, he will have more room to do it, instead of knocking every picture he can off the walls when he hits the end of the hallway.

      • Theophanes profile imageAUTHOR

        Theophanes Avery 

        3 years ago from New England

        You may ask... Bengals were originally bred, in part, with the hopes that hybridizing the common cat would give them a genetic resistance to FIP (Feline Infectious Peritonitis) which is a truly nasty disease that ravages many cat populations and has no cure. In a cruel twist of irony Bengals are one of several breeds which are actually much *more* likely to get the virus. I lost Sophra at five years of age to the disease, and Howl at 8, which devastated me. I no longer have any house cats, just two feral barn cats who are in no way pets. But thank you for reading. It is nice to know what I learned in that special time was not wasted! Happy catting! :)

        PS For Bengals who do not get FIP their lifespan is probably more like 12-15 years.

      • profile image

        Susan 

        3 years ago

        What a good wealth of knowledge. The neighbor's bengal was out while I was hanging my Christmas lights the other night. She comes right up to me and is so very affectionate, meowing and wanting her pets. I took a walk with her down the neighborhood sidewalk. She then wanted to run, and I mean she flew. We got to her house and I prompted her to go to the door, she just seems to understand everything I say to her, like my Mainecoon. She is awesome! Another Great article. Can I ask what happened to Sophra? What are the lifespan for the Bengals, do you know?

      • Theophanes profile imageAUTHOR

        Theophanes Avery 

        3 years ago from New England

        Well.... they may have just wondered off for a few days... but she also may have tried to protect the kitten from some wild critter or loose dog and suffered the consequences. For your sake I hope she reappears safe and sound, but if she doesn't have comfort in knowing you did what you could.

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        kathy14 

        3 years ago

        A mother Bengal cat and her kittens were abandoned near our house. She left with one of the kittens. There were 5 but one was given away. We have 3 left. I am keeping 2 and the other 1 belongs to a neighbor. I fed them from a syringe and box trained them myself. I haven't seen the momma and the kitten that she left with for 2 days . I am very worried and am going to keep looking for them until I find them .

      • nathalia27 profile image

        Nancy 

        3 years ago

        You give me second thoughts in having bengal cat now.

      • profile image

        ben 

        4 years ago

        A lot of the behavior you described is just normal cat behavior, put even the sweetest cat in a cage and you get one pissed off cat who will get revenge on you for wronging them.

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        nut 

        4 years ago

        My Bengal kaiser has to go outside. I have fitted him with a bell and this tends to prevent him from killing birds etc. As before there were presents daily. I just believe these cats have instincts and keeping them locked up is like cageing a wild Animal. Allot of people go for looks and don't tend to care for needs.

        The local vet says Kaiser is the finest specimen she has seen, so I am lucky to have rescued him from an illegal breeder. Were he was kept in sqaulid conditions with 20 other kittens. You can imagine the state he was in. Now though he is the most loving affectinate creature I know. He gets on well with my paternts dogs, they were introduced properly. Kaiser does like a good scrap though which Im not fond of as Bengals are allot stronger than other cats. I will say though he does not fight unless provoked. He has even fought of next doors boxer dog.. My advice People Children fine be careful round other animals...

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        Anthony 

        4 years ago

        I have had my Toyger Bengal for a year and a half and I couldn't be happier. This is one intelligent and loving cat. He does get bored from time to time but I do everything I can to keep him occupied. I would recommend a Bengal to anyone that loves cats that are extremely smart and very affectionate. He's very loving and as close to a dog as a cat can get. If you train them right and stick strong to the training you'll end up with the best cat you've ever had. My Bengal is extremely obedient for a cat too.

      • Theophanes profile imageAUTHOR

        Theophanes Avery 

        4 years ago from New England

        Ardith, yes crosses between bobcats and domestic cats are possible... usually these litters result in very muscular kittens who sometimes have bobbed tails and very often have "double paws." These are usually found in feral populations... they have the distinct advantage of having that wild ancestry to hunt better. They're usually not the best pets! But Bengals also get out from time to time and get into the genetics of feral populations. I have had at least three people come to me with what was clearly a Bengal cross they got from the streets! It's a big and strange world out there. Enjoy your little furry monsters. :)

      • profile image

        Ardith 

        4 years ago

        I enjoyed reading your article about Bengals. My cats aren't Bengals but share many commonalities. Size and appearance( muscle and bone structure) are very similar. Other than color my male looks very like yours. My female covers or hides food when she is done eating. (doesn't matter if the male is done or not.) They are very rowdy. Have climbed the built in bookshelves and picked out books that I find laying on the floor. Unfortunately when I didn't find them soon enough pages were sometimes removed and hidden under things. or buried in the cat litter. These cats were from a female tabby farm cat and a feral male tabby raised by hand from about 4 weeks old when they were abandoned. I've heard of people having unexpected crosses between their female cat and a bobcat that are larger, much more aggressive, whether at play or hunt. I wonder if that would be similar to the Bengals.

      • profile image

        Katy Riley 

        5 years ago

        I love my Bengals, and I find your stories and information to be true to the crazy breed!

      • profile image

        meegs supergirl 

        5 years ago

        I am a dog person slowly moving over to the cat world. This is the most dog-like cat i have heard of... hmmmm :)

      • Stephen Govoni profile image

        Stephen Govoni 

        5 years ago from Coastal Massachusetts

        Your hub made me smile. My wife and I bought two bengal kittens while we lived together in college, one male and one female. They are absolutely beautiful animals with striking markings. The affection that these animals offer is outstanding. If you love animals and can offer discipline I firmly believe Bengals are the most amazing breed. We have 3 sons now, all under 5 years old, and they constantly chase and wrestle with the cats. Cougar (the male) is big around 20lbs and he has never bit or clawed. Never, as in no strangers, no family, and not even a wild 2 year old pulling on his tail or yanking his feet. Cougar will follow me around the house, sleep under our covers, lay next to us on the couch....

        These cats are not cats, they have doglike personalities with catlike tendencies. And yes, they HATE the vet! Thanks so much for this hub!

      • Theophanes profile imageAUTHOR

        Theophanes Avery 

        6 years ago from New England

        LoL, well thank you Enzosmom. I have to agree, Bengals are a handful and not for everyone! This weekend I got asked, "What's that howling noise?" "That'd be Howl....I named him that for a reason..." "That seems such a simple answer." (He was staring down my Snowshoe boy. SIGH.) My house is plenty full of felines right now but I have stated if I were to ever get another it'd have to be a Bengal. They're just too much not to love! Plus there are breeders now working with all sorts of new colors and even long-haired Bengals. Intriguing stuff. Who knew you could have beauty and brains!

      • profile image

        Enzosmom 

        6 years ago

        I just love this article and come back to it from time to time for a smile :)

        My bengal boy must stay inside. He is extremely territorial, and I fear not only for his well-being but for the well-being of all the outdoor critters.

        In addition, outdoor cats (esp in a city/suburb) have a very short lifespan and are subject to all sorts of nasty pests, germs, dirt, dangers (despite being fully vaccinated, why take a chance). We prefer for him to be safe and live to a ripe old age than to take a chance and have him hurt, injured, injure others or worse.

        He has plenty of space to play, (as another member wrote) "a pet store worth of toys", we horse around twice a day for at least an hour. He loves people and dogs. He is not lacking for anything. And if he is missing something, he has no problem letting us know! He is quite the talker! :)

        He goes for an annual check up with his favorite veterinarian. He is a very healthy, neutered 18 lb PITA (said with love, of course)

        In terms of biting and infection: that is true. A cat's bite can be messy. If your cat (any cat) mistakes your hand for a steak, after the incident, keep it clean and keep a close eye on the wound. It is painful and antibiotics may be in order. It's not the end of the world, though, as some posters mentioned.

        I have read that some variations of Bengals do seem to have long(er) toes.

        Bengals aren't for everyone. They are very demanding, incredibly intelligent and active. They insist on being "in" on whatever is going on around them and their dog-like antics are too funny for words.

        Oh by the way, mine starts pee'ing squatting and then stands up, too! I am so glad you mentioned that, Sarah C. I put his boxes up against the wall and stand up whole pages of newspaper between the box and the wall. I also have gallons of Natures Miracle ;)

      • profile image

        heavenblest-bengals 

        6 years ago

        I breed bengals in perth western australia my bloodline is HCM free & i been breedn for 8yrs. All my bubs fetch love water are cuddle sweet natured.

      • profile image

        Jaynie448 

        6 years ago

        Hi, Thank you for your reply,I think i will get him an out door run made and get him neutered. Thank you again for the advise

      • Theophanes profile imageAUTHOR

        Theophanes Avery 

        6 years ago from New England

        Oh boy Jaynie448, sounds like you got a handful there! To answer some of your questions... Melanistic Bengals are black cats with black spots or marbling. This color is not recognized for showing so show breeders do sometimes cull them but I think more often than not they get sold as pets because pet owners don't care to show anyway and some of us actually think melanistic is beautiful.

        As for your cat... he could have Bengal in him although to me he just looks like a Siamese cross. They show up very commonly as all black cats with long tails, lean bodies, and adorable faces. Being a cross he probably wouldn't display blue eyes either. At 9 months of age most cats are pretty close their adult size, he may grow a little more but by the time a year's out he's going to be done with that.

        Have you neutered him yet? If he's unfixed he will grow more muscular and he will beat the hell out of any other tom cat in sight. The surgery isn't just for the purpose of keeping the population down it also calms the animals down a bit, makes them more likely to be docile, especially towards each other.

        I had a Siamese girl who displayed most of these behavioral characteristics... climbing windows, dashing through doors, biting, trying to beat on the other cats. I'm afraid you're not going to get rid of these personality traits. I personally don't let my cats outside as I know they'll endanger wildlife and put themselves at risk for being eaten by dogs and other things. I have however made them an outdoor run I have yet to post photos of. I did however write an article on caging cats that goes though some ideas for outdoor runs, some more affordable than others. It'd keep him from harming other cats. Scroll to the bottom for the outdoor runs. https://hubpages.com/animals/Finding-the-Appropria...

        I hope this has helped you at least a little! Good luck!

      • profile image

        Jaynie448 

        6 years ago

        Hello everyone.. thank god Iv found this thread (very funny storys btw about sophra i was lol'ing)..anyway i really need as much peoples advice as possible pleease!.. i rescued a kitten 4 days ago, an ad off preloved etc said she urgently needed to rehome her kitten etc, and due to recent text messages iv come to the conculsion she knew what sort of cat he was and that he was quite feisty etc (as he is lol) she was pregnant too and she said she just simply didn't want him..anyway! we weighed him and he weighs 5kg (11 lb) hes 12 inches from floor to top of shoulder and 14 iches long from shoulder to base of tail, hes 9 months old..& when wev let him out as he was climbing the walls, running past us when we was opneing doors to which we had to shut them quickly, and also climbing the windows yes the actual window!! we were amazed! so put butter on his feet my neighbour told me about that and he battered every poor cat in sight,, a woman was even out in her dressing gown at 8am watching him and she said theyv been at it for an hour, there were 4 other cats he battered too :( this particular white one, there was fluff all over the garden so i went and chased him. caught him and he scratched and bit me he eventually came in tho :? i felt truly awful though and im scared of letting him out.. i want to know what sort of cat he actually is??!! this isn't normal atall!! how big he wil get length and weight etc,, should i keep him in now and build a cattery? is he a bengal do u think?? iv taken looads of pics and iv posted a few on a link (which ill add at the end)he is all black but he has like a marble "rust" when the light of my flash hits it and in sunlight iv captured this on the pics too.. hes very long and can touch my cuboard side..please help as i need to know what to do.. i dont want any harm to come to my neighbours cats, i dont want him to go missing and i need to know how big hel actually get?? do they come in black? iv read something about melanistic? & iv read breeders get rid of the black bengals or savaanhs quick as no one wants a black one :( which is awful i think.. im not saying i think hes a wild cat lol but i would greatly appreciate any advice or opinions u have on him... my email address is jaynierichardson@gmail.com and the link to his pics is here www.photobucket.com/benji-cat please help me... he also likes to eat...alot! and meows alot too and hes always demanding attetion off me and my fiancé...any thoughts or ideas?? i welcome all your comments etc :) thankyou in advance x

      • profile image

        Sarah C 

        6 years ago

        My Female Bengal is 13 this year - She has pee'd standing up her whole life. She starts off squatting but as she ee's she slowly stands up more and more - I have a high sided litter tray which is over 12inches tall - But she still manages to do it (as this tray has handle holes which I have covered with tape in the vain hope none will escape) She is a mad cat LOL - She is not ill, she is just a bengal who does this... Just glad I dont have carpet anywhere near the litter box lol

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        Tammy 

        6 years ago

        I have 2 Bengal female kittens, 1 spotted & 1 marble. They are a total handful and very clingy. The one is very boisterous and the other just follows us everywhere and YELLS at us to be carried. Bengals are very demanding I have descovered but also very loving.....

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        Beverly 

        6 years ago

        Thank you for your reply, I really don't know if this is what they are, but they certainly don't look like any Cats feet I've ever seen before.

      • Theophanes profile imageAUTHOR

        Theophanes Avery 

        6 years ago from New England

        Your Bengal might have "double paws," (more correctly called polydactl) which just means he has more toes than is normal. It's a common trait in Maine Coons and ferals and because Bengals are from a whole mess of other breeds they sometimes have things like this pop up. Sometimes double pawed cats look like they have mittens or baseball mitts for front feet and I knew a Siamese once that had ten toes on each back foot, which is extreme and very unusual, not to mention very bizarre looking! Hemingway had a bunch of these double pawed cats, that's why any cat which displays this feature is sometimes called a Hemingway Cat. :) And if your cat isn't double pawed then I don't really know what to say. Bengals feet generally look pretty normal...

      • profile image

        Beverly 

        6 years ago

        I have a Bengal Cat and I was just wondering, do Bengals have different feet to other Cats? Her feet look like hands.

      • Theophanes profile imageAUTHOR

        Theophanes Avery 

        6 years ago from New England

        Sushi Bengal Adoption: Previously owned Bengals are a completely different thing. They are peculiar animals. I must say though if he climbs on your bed to watch cartoons with you there is hope he'll eventually start to feel safer in his environment and more amiable towards you. I have met a lot of these cats though that will never readjust, they end up holy terrors and bad biters. That's why I stress people really know what they're getting into when they take one of these guys home because it will be a lifelong commitment.

        To all those who feel keeping cats indoor is cruel: Please understand it's not just for the cat's safety it for everything within claw's reach. Bengals can be ferocious hunters and there's certain bird species that are being completely devastated by feral and outdoor cats. Also the possibility of your cat picking up a disease from another cat he encounters is MUCH greater when he's allowed outside and at least here in the United States more cats are killed by cars and wildlife than anything else. In fact the average age of death for an outdoor cat is a pitiful 2 years, compared to house cats who live well into their teens and beyond. Personally I am building a large outdoor pen for my beasties. It keeps them away from most dangers and allows them to play in the grass and feel the sunshine. That being said any animal which is raised 100% inside will not know what it's missing. Right now I am guessing Howl is going to be scared to death of the new pen as he's never been outside and tends to act this way in new environments. Sophra I am sad to say passed away and so this is really for my other kitties enjoyment but I'll probably make a hub on it one of these days.

      • profile image

        Tundraleigh 

        6 years ago

        I have two beautiful bengals, India and Sati. Liked hearing about your kitties but couldn't disagree more about forcing your cats to live indoors. Our cats live for their time in the forests and fields. They climb everything. They catch bugs and small fish in the stream behind the house. They roam all over the mountain. I would rather they live shorter, but more fulfilled lives than be cloistered away, never able to feel the wind ruffling their fur, never able to stalk prey, never allowed to melt away into a dappled wood to spend quiet time in nature. I hope you don't take any offense, but I would never want my little wildcats to live a life of sheltered domesticity. I can also tell you that during the winter months when it is too cold for them to spend time outdoors, they become much more destructive and fight more often. They are just so much healthier and happier, physically and mentally, when they have a natural and mentally stimulating outlet for their energy. I think a lot of the behavioral issues people have with bengals stem from them being cooped up indoors where they end up causing trouble to alleviate their boredom. Added bonus, we no longer have to fence our gardens since they have become incredible little hunters. I will agree with one thing you said - we will always have hybrid cats from now on, they are amazing and beautiful companions.

      • profile image

        hobe 

        6 years ago

        "BTW, if you get bit by one you could be in for thousands of dollars of medical bills,"

        Sure, if you don't have health insurance, or if you don't take care of it right away.

        I was recently bit by a friend's cat, who clamped her jaws onto my wrist. It was the singular most painful experience, worse than breaking my arm. In less than an hour, my wrist was completely swollen, and I had to enlist the help of said friend to cart me off to the hospital.

        It took two solid weeks before I was able to bend my wrist without pain. Imagine the looks of surprise on people's faces when I explained that my arm was not actually broken, but rather that I had suffered from a gnarly cat bite.

        Cat mouths are festering cesspools of nastyness, & deep puncture wounds are no joke. W/ kaiser insurance, I paid my usual co-op fees for two visits + shots + generic antibiotics. A whopping $80... of course, it depends on your provider+plan... but far from 'thousands of dollars.'

      • profile image

        Sushi Bengal Adoption 

        6 years ago

        I just adopted an F6 2 yr old male Bengal, He spends the majority of his time under our bed. Only coming out at night and then likes to get on the bed and watch cartoons with us! He has been eating so long as I put his food under the bed. He seems very fearful of just about everything! Will he get better eventually and be one of the fam?

      • arusho profile image

        arusho 

        6 years ago from University Place, Wa.

        Great hub, I love all cats. I've never seen a service cat, but I live in the Tacoma area and maybe I'll bump into Patty and her service cat!

      • sen.sush23 profile image

        Sushmita 

        6 years ago from Kolkata, India

        Our three Bengal kittens be playing around the house, chasing each other and jumping over the back of the sofa, and in their inertia would be shooting like little furry cannon balls against the window. I was ever so afraid that they would one day go straight out of the first floor window and land outside. But they clung to the window grille with their tiny claws and dangled, making us laugh with relief. Very informative and yet personal Hub. Enjoyed reading it.

      • profile image

        fordgirl89 

        6 years ago

        i really enjoyed reading about your bengals! i have one and i swear he is my best friend some days! he is brillant! i came across a marble bengal at a shelter today that they had for adoption for only 60 dollars. i don't think they realized what they have on their hands. i was absolutely taken back by this little guy and felt horrible for leaving him behind. i came home only to sit and wonder how my six year old bengal would do with a year and a half year old. lets face it, the young one would be a snack for my 12 pounder. it breaks my heart and i am so tempted to at least try and see how the introduction would go, but i am worried i will end up with some battle wounds, and worse, i would have one less cat on my hands. my bengal actually got a pit bull puppy by the neck and refused to let go at a rather young age. i turned to your article for some advice, and after reading i think i have come to the conclusion that it would be a bad idea. it is so nice to see what other people have to say about these gorgeous pets! i love mine! i will never own anything but a bengal!

      • profile image

        Valerie 

        6 years ago

        I have a 9 month old F2 Bengal boy and he is all that you describe, purrs like a choo choo train even louder when you talk to home or pet him. Follows me everywhere, cries when I leave and is at the door when I get home. I think the most amazing thing he has done is jump from the floor to the top edge of an open door and walk around like he is on a tight rope.. He talks a lot and will only eat raw chicken, he loves it and everything else gives him diarrhea. At nine months he weighs 12 lbs, is 12inches high at the shoulder and 16 inches long from shoulder to base of his tail which is very thick. His papers say he is brown spotted but he has much contrast with a silvery brown background and milk chocolate spots. H has all the wild type characteristics to his appearance and I wish I had more just like him. I have a female Siamese that is his buddy, a Siamese/Bengal mix female and an American Tabby mix female all spade. I plan to get my boy neutered in the next couple of weeks. I used to honk Siamese was the martest breed until I got this Bengal and thy definitely are smarter than Siamese and much more active. They re fantastic pets and companions but hey re not the usual cat, you definitely have to love them more than your belongings.

      • profile image

        Enzosmom 

        6 years ago

        Thoroughly enjoyed the article. So incredibly accurate: similar to watching a great film, I laughed, I cried, I cheered. We have Enzo, our adopted 6-year old, 17-lb amber furry ball o' love/terror. The first moment he came home, he was affectionately referred to as our Little Mike Tyson: all muscle, agile, active, definitely high maintenance, loving - but on his terms, EXTREMELY territorial, maddening, quirky, incredibly smart, so loud, and frankly, a little smarty pants(said with love, of course). Now, after a year together, we're convinced he is a lifetime member of the Terrible Two's Club disguised as a Pit Bull in a Bengal Outfit. We've "adjusted" to each other, but we tend to make most of the concessions in his favor. We love him so much, we can't imagine life without him. But he is definitely a handful, and like living on a roller-coaster, being loved by a Bengal is not for the faint of heart.

      • profile image

        Enzosmom 

        6 years ago

        Thoroughly enjoyed the article. So incredibly accurate: like Like a great film, I laughed, I cried, I cheered. We have Enzo, our adopted 6-year old, 17-lb amber furry ball o' love/terror. The first moment he came home, he was affectionately referred to as our Little Mike Tyson: all muscle, agile, active, definitely high maintenance, loving but definitely on his terms, EXTREMELY territorial, maddening, quirky, incredibly smart, so loud, and frankly, a little smarty pants(said with love, of course). Now, after a year together, we're convinced he is a lifetime member of the terrible two's club disguised as a Pit Bull in a Bengal Outfit. We've "adjusted" to each other, but we tend to make most of the consessions in his favor. We love him so much, we can't imagine life without him. But he is definitely a handful and like living on a roller-coaster, not for the faint of heart.

      • profile image

        Anne 

        6 years ago

        I have ruru. A new Zealand Bengal. She is six months old lives with 2 bichons. Runs the house and the property. We live in the bush with lots if native birds. Hoping she won't go on a killing spree. Love her to bits. Bengals rock

      • rachealomack profile image

        rachealomack 

        6 years ago from levittown, NY

        I enjoyed this article! I also learned a lot from it :)! Voted up!

      • profile image

        tiggy2006 

        6 years ago

        We have 3 Bengals all brown spotted, here in the UK Bengals are still on the dangerous animal list therefore we cannot let them out. We have converted the garden and the house with two huge cages with trees and waterfalls in them, they love this and the one off the patio includes sleeping bags and pots that they curl up in and they just love our two german shepherds and our new arrival white oriental cat called Holly !!

      • profile image

        Vanessa 

        6 years ago

        Bengals are wonderful. I have one that swims in the bath, & i certainly am not allowed to ever have a shower without him. He also stalks toddlers & large dogs down the street reguarly. [And he's dead serious about it!]So serious that one lady picked up her dog & ran....

        It always concerns me that some people get bengals without realizing how high maintenance they are though. They're so smart & so social that if you leave them alone all day in a house they'll go nuts. Life would be very traumatic if i didn't let mine outside at the crack of dawn each day. They are not designed to be inside cats

      • profile image

        Chanda 

        7 years ago

        I have been owned and loved by a few Bengals in my day! My first was a little Brown Spotted darling named Takarra. She was as wild as wild could be. Her first day home at just over 7 weeks, she stole my husband's dinner, a chunk of roast bigger than her! Josh tried taking it back and darn near lost a finger! She growled over food and would help herself to what she wanted. At 7 months old, she passed away. We have no proof, but we believe the catfood recall of 2007 was the cause of her death since she had eaten one of the brands recalled since we had gotten her. She dies 3 weeks before the recall. Heartbroken, we turned back to our breeder, who by then was a good trusted friend. She responded by sending her pregnant brown marble, Targa home with us. We got to raise a litter and take our pick. Josh fell in love with a silver marble who we named Kianna while the runt of the litter, a brown marble boy named Kaidyn stole my heart. Because he was sickly at birth, he was totally bottle fed and raised. He was so cute about it that we bottle fed until he was 6 months old! Kaidyn was harness trained and even rode in his own baby stroller! He went everywhere with me and became very well known around town. he even did Halloween pet costume shows and beat out all the dogs one year to win the contest at the dog shelter! Kianna was never happy in a home with other cats and after her first birthday, I placed her with a friend of mine whom she adored! She is happy and healthy and has even adjusted to other cats with time. Kaidyn passed away last year on Christmas day from HCM. He is dearly missed and thought of every day. Kimiko is my first Snow Bengal, a Snow Mink, we call her the Princess and she demands being treated as such! She never harness trained and doesn't like leaving her house at all. She does give kisses though and loves both her Siamese cats! She will yell at you for no reason other than to say, look at me! I'm cute! The one thing she hates though is our other Bengal cat, Mayayna, a brown spotted kitten. Mayayna is Bengal in every sense of the word! She loves water and she can open doors as well as turn on light switches. She also has the food aggression and will steal it as you go to take a bite! Bengals are the best cats and I love each and every Bengal I have ever met!

        After Kaidyn's passing, we found out I am pregnant. I found this out exactly 2 months to the day he left us. Both my husband and I agree that the baby is a gift from our beloved boy! We are due Oct 23rd, right before Kaidyn's favorite time of year. We believe that Kaidyn didn't want us to be lonely and that he wanted something to fill the new baby stroller that we gave him for Christmas morning. We are having a girl and have decided we will honor Kaidyn in her name. She will be named Savannah Rayne. Savannah for another breed of cat we both dearly love and Rayne in honor of Kaidyn's sister's middle name.

      • profile image

        Melissa 

        7 years ago

        Just Put a deposit on a kitten and loving it...I'll c here on Mother's Day. What a gift. Her name is Rahza, she is a brown spotted and her mother is stunning.

      • profile image

        derins 

        7 years ago

        i really want to know is bengal cats good with babies and i would to have 3 reasons why and yes you should have a bengal cat !!!!

      • Esmeowl12 profile image

        Cindy A Johnson 

        7 years ago from Sevierville, TN

        This is a great hub. While I don't have Bengals, my kitten exhibits many of the traits you mentioned. I LOL at the antics you described. To know a cat is to love one.

      • profile image

        Michael Stevens 

        7 years ago

        Hi

        I have a 6 month old female bengal who is getting spayed this week. She seems to urinate on the bed all the time so now i dont let her in the bedroom. I want her to learn not to so she can sleep with me and partner. Can anyone help and advise me if this is normal for bengals and how to train them not to urinate? p.s. it is only on the bed....

        thanks

      • profile image

        sherry 

        7 years ago

        This was a great read. I adopted a free kitten about a year ago now, and ended up with the most delightful cat I've ever met.

        She is most certainly part Bengal, part silver Bengal to be more precise. I was pretty sure because of her markings, however, reading the personality traits and characteristics of the Bengals solidified my guess.

        She is a treasure of a kitten. I named her Benny (before I knew she was a Bengal - in fact before I even brought a new cat home, I knew that was going to be her name)

      • Fossillady profile image

        Kathi 

        7 years ago from Saugatuck Michigan

        Love, love this Cat!

      • profile image

        austin 

        7 years ago

        Erin, there is nothing you can do. They will howl their entire life. these cats are not cats, but rather half/breed wild animals. they are still so early in their breeds bloodlines that they have not worked out the charactersitics of a more wild animal. I have had many, and they are not for a new cat owner. Some of mine had to be put down, just couldn't deal with not sleeping. BTW, if you get bit by one you could be in for thousands of dollars of medical bills. My last bengal bite was by my beloved Max, three puncture wounds that neded stiches. Was Max's last bite.

      • profile image

        Erin 

        7 years ago

        I loved reading your post. I have two male Bengals, one spotted and one marble. They are both wonderful babies. We just celebrated their first birthday. They are not as wild as your cats. The most annoying thing that Oliver does is cry during the night, which frustrates me. I am trying to find a way to get some sleep but it seems that punishing him does not work. Do you have any ideas?

        Thanks! :O)

      • profile image

        Alfie 

        8 years ago

        How sad that you insist they should be kept in the house. Against all of theor natural desires. We have a Bengal and he cames and goes as he pleases. He loves nothing more than climbing trees and racing around chasing flies. I cant see the pleasure in keeping a Bengal if you are only going to keep it 'safe'

      • Enelle Lamb profile image

        Enelle Lamb 

        8 years ago from Canada's 'California'

        What a great hub! Absolutely love the stories!

        I am adding a link to your hub on my blog about cats (A Cat's Tail - the 'Purr'fect Blog) on blogspot.com

        Thanks for a great read!

      • profile image

        Julie Chitwood 

        8 years ago

        Loved your description of the Bengels. We have George - all 18 lbs of him. He LOVES doing pushups on my husband's legs in the middle of the night (mine he leaves alone, of course I can sleep through anything and Bill can't). He also has a "thing" about getting up on the bar and trying to hang on the mirror. No matter how many times he gets in trouble about it he just keeps doing it. Are pressently trying time outs when he does it - but as you can tell - he keeps doing it. Our house looks like a pet store of toys, plus he adds things to his treasurers (we have to bring him back a present when we go away - he immediately checks the suitcase). He loves people - runs to the door to greet them. You are right on about the IQ - I just wish he would use it to quit doing the things that get him in trouble.

      • David Fallon profile image

        David Fallon 

        8 years ago from Pomona, CA

        great stuff

      • Theophanes profile imageAUTHOR

        Theophanes Avery 

        8 years ago from New England

        No more so than a regular cat, Ebony. These guys are domesticated, they're just a lot smarter and little wilder looking. :) 'Course there are times when a cage can be used as a tool for any cat, as I have written about in one of my other articles (https://pethelpful.com/cats/Caging-Cats-When-and-W... )but Bengals don't require them any more than a regular cat.

      • profile image

        Ebony 

        8 years ago

        hi there. do you have to cage these cats?

      • Theophanes profile imageAUTHOR

        Theophanes Avery 

        9 years ago from New England

        Oh don't get me started on crating the little buggars and bringing them to the vet! I have to bring Howl in soon and I am dreading it. He needs a blood test but I am more than willing to bet he'll probably have to be anestatized to get it! He doesn't trust anyone but me and tweaks in a new situation or location... and has no scruff to hang onto. Oh that should be fun... ;) Thanks for the comment! This article and my The Evil Scheming of a Vicious Cockatoo (https://pethelpful.com/birds/The-Evil-Scheming-of-... ) story has to be my favorite animal hubs to write and to share!

      • Grundge Hedgehog profile image

        Grundge Hedgehog 

        9 years ago from Durban

        hahaha!i enjoyed this immensely! I do not have a Bengal cat, I have 2 normal domestic short haired. Your story of the 2 bengals in your home sounds almost similar to what's its like trying to convince my small cat into the cage for a vet visit! Nicely Done - Love this hub!

      • Trisha's Artworks profile image

        Trisha's Artworks 

        9 years ago

        Wow!! nice hub, great pictures, ok,.... some part of me is sayin you should keep one just look at their magnificent fur..and the other part of me...no pls. your mom's vase is gonna be in trouble...,love your hub..i'm gonna show this to my dad,..:-D

      • profile image

        gracen/wolfie399 

        9 years ago

        i know the joy/pain of owning wild cat mixes....i have a bobcat/domestic shorthair...she is a handful,but i wouldn't trade her for the world...also the pictures on this site were pretty cool..i think i might get one to add joy to my exotic life with exotic animals.

      • profile image

        Jennifer 

        9 years ago

        Your post had me absolutely crying with laughter! Or maybe relief...I have 2 male silver Bengals, and it's so nice to know there are others who have the joy/pain of living with these wonderful monsters! I wouldn't trade them for the world, although I would like a night of solid sleep, without fear of something crashing on my head...

      • profile image

        Christopher 

        10 years ago

        Wonderful photos! My cats LOVE playing with straws. We always pick up extras when we get fast food, so we can bring home "presents" for the cats.

      • Theophanes profile imageAUTHOR

        Theophanes Avery 

        10 years ago from New England

        No, Oscar is a dusky headed Conure. Sophra's very small for a Bengal... The males can get over 20 pounds sometimes of pure muscle. Females tend to be smaller, 8 pounds or so is probably average for them.

      • Zsuzsy Bee profile image

        Zsuzsy Bee 

        10 years ago from Ontario/Canada

        Great Hub. Is Oscar an amazon? Just trying to judge the size of your cat...nice pictures too.

        regards Zsuzsy

      • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

        Patty Inglish 

        10 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

        Fascinating and unique hub! Your pictures are simply fantastic, especially cat and bird friends and singing cat.

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