The prospect of Bengal cat ownership is something that can seem very daunting for many.
Although Bengal cats are famed and desired worldwide for their unique nature and striking, beautiful appearance (I mean who doesn’t want a “mini leopard” at home?) there do seem to be many questions that people have about this breed.
On this website, our goal is to answer your questions about Bengal cat ownership. We are gradually working our way through lists of just about every Bengal cat ownership question we can find, in order to build the most comprehensive source of information on the Internet about this fascinating breed of cat.
In this article, we look at a broad overview of Bengal cat ownership, answering the following question:
“What do you need to know about owning a Bengal cat?”
Let’s look at the key points you need to be aware of when it comes to Bengal cat ownership.
What You Need To Know About Bengal Cat Ownership
In no particular order, here’s what we think you need to be aware of and understand when it comes to bringing in and keeping a Bengal cat in your home:
- Bengal cat ownership is a lifelong commitment. We cannot stress this point enough. It seems that the vast majority of problems come from owners who are not sufficiently committed, and not understanding of the fact that a Bengal cat is a new family member and not just an appliance or a toy. Of course this doesn’t just apply to Bengals – most other breeds of cats suffer from this problem as well – just ask anyone who works for a cat protection society, RSPCA etc). Do not – under any circumstances – bring a Bengal cat into your home unless you are sure you can commit for the long term. If you know you are the kind of person who may bore or tire of Bengal ownership (especially once the novelty wears off) or if you do not have a suitable lifestyle, e.g. frequent relocations or absences due to work, then you are ill advised to consider a Bengal. Many a Bengal has wound up in a rehoming shelter or up for adoption due to owners who simply weren’t prepared for a lifelong commitment. We don’t wish to sound negative or condescending, but this is such a critical point to get right.
- There will be ups and downs. Bengal cat ownership (like owning any other breed of cat or animal, for that matter) is not all positive. Yes, there will be ups, but there will be many “downs” and frustrations too. You may find furniture damaged, potential challenges with integrating new pets or animals, and a number of other possible frustrations. Do not be fooled by appearances. We love Bengal cats, but also think it is critical that any owner accepts there will always be challenges and difficulties from day one. Provided you can mentally prepare for this, then you should be fine.
- Ensure you are ok with a potentially noisy cat. One of the aspects of Bengal cat ownership that seems to cause the most problems is the potential for a noisy/vocal cat. Bengals are known to be a rather vocal breed (read our article here on why Bengal cats talk so much). If you don’t like the idea of a cat that might talk to you – with increasing volume and frequency as he/she ages – then a Bengal cat may not be a good proposition. However, if you don’t mind a vocal cat, then a Bengal could be a great choice.
- There will be costs. Do not underestimate the cost of ownership. The purchase price is really just the “cost of entry”. Much of the expense of having a Bengal cat comes after that initial cost of entry. You will need to purchase food (check out our guide here to the best food for Bengal cats, for more information on what you should be feeding your pet). There will be toys to buy (once again, view our favorite toys for Bengals) and you will also face vet bills over the lifetime of your cat. You may even wish to consider pet insurance for your Bengal (we hope to do some more content on this topic in the near future, looking at the pros and cons of taking our pet insurance on your Bengal). Whatever you do, ensure that you do not purchase a Bengal kitten if your financial position will be stretched too thinly. It is unfair on the cat – and challenging for yourself – if you are struggling to pay for food, vet bills, toys etc.
Hopefully you now understand what you need to know about owning a Bengal cat.
The most important concept – in our opinion – is that Bengal cat ownership is a lifelong commitment.
You will almost certainly have frustrations and difficulties with your cat, especially as an energetic kitten. If you have a house full of Ming Dynasty vases and expensive soft furnishings, then a Bengal may not be the best bet for you.
However, with the right approach you can improve the chances of your “ownership experience” going as smoothly as possible for both yourself and your new cat.
We hope you found this article helpful. If you have any feedback, questions, or queries, then you can leave a comment below.
Otherwise you may wish to browse our other articles on Bengal cat ownership – we’re sure you will find helpful information on a wide variety of topics such as food for your Bengal, the best toys to keep your cat entertained, and more.