The Bengal Cat is a popular breed that is relatively new to the scene of cat breeds. Originally bred in 1963, the breed did not gain acceptance until 1986 by the International Cat Association (TICA). Bengal Cats are relatively unique in that they are bred from domesticated cats to wild Asian Leopard Cats. These animals feature a jubilant personality with the markings of their wild forbearers.
In this article we are going to look at the behavior and temperament of bengal cats.
Bengal Cat Behavior
Bengal Cats tend to have wonderful personalities. If you get an early generation cat that is more closely related to or bred to the Asian Leopard Cat, they may act a little bit wild. Most cats in homes are fifth generation cats or F5s.
Bengal Cats tend to be very active kitties. They love to explore their surroundings, which has the potential to get them into trouble, especially if you don’t provide a lot of environmental stimulation. If your Bengal Cat is interested in the outdoors, you could always walk him or her on a harness and leash to give them more of an opportunity to explore their environment.
Bengal Cats tend to love water, a trait which harkens back to the Asian Leopard Cat rather than most domesticated cats who typically aren’t big fans of being wet. Instead, the Bengal Cat is an agile and active swimmer. Providing your cat with opportunities to enjoy the water is a great way to keep them fit.
Bengal Cats need a lot of attention. They tend to be relatively hyperactive and sociable. You need to provide them with games and activities to keep their mind active and engaged. Because they tend to be rather intelligent cats, you can train them much like you would a dog. Many emit chirps or sounds similar to a bark, making them even more dog-like.
Bengal Cats are often very loving cats. They are loyal and attach themselves to their families readily. You may find your Bengal waiting for you at the front door when you get home from work. While you’re doing housework in your home, you may find that you have a little shadow in your Bengal, who might follow you around and watch your every move.
Bengal Cats also tend to get along well with other animals, especially other cats and dogs. Some have even been housed with ferrets, sharing their space readily. You will want to be careful with your Bengal Cat and any prey species, such as birds and rodents.
Bengal cats are known to sometimes exhibit “difficult” behaviour, such as aggression or excessive meowing. We will cover this more in future articles.
Why Breed Bengal Cats?
Some people wonder why Bengals Cats are so popular and what inspired breeders to breed them. In short, many people originally bred them to have a domesticated cat with the features of a wild cat. After all, they look very similar to the Asian Leopard Cat with stripes and rosettes in their coat.
What keeps people coming back to the Bengal Cat is its personality. These loving felines make great pets, but you’ll want to be careful if they’re your first cat. Unlike many domesticated cats which laze about during the day, the Bengal Cats are constantly on the move and may get into trouble if you don’t provide enough enrichment for them.
Many of the breeds used to create the Bengal as considered friendly cats in their own right. They include breeds such as the British Shorthair, the Bombay, and the Abyssinian. Nowadays, Bengals are bred without having to cross them to wild cats, which is making the breed more of a true breed. That said, many organizations throughout the world don’t allow Bengal Cats to be shown in their organizations.
Caring for Your Bengal Cat
The most important things to provide for your Bengal Cat are preventative health care, proper nutrition, and environmental enrichment. Take your Bengal to the veterinarian regularly to ensure that any health problems are caught early on, when treatment may be most effective.
They should also be regularly vaccinated for diseases such as rabies. The good news is that, like most short-haired cats, they need limited things in the way of grooming. Regular nail trims and a brushing from time to time is usually sufficient to keep their skin and coats healthy.
Environmental enrichment means that you provide physical and mental stimulation for your Bengal Cat. This can involve playing games with them, such as fetch, or taking them for a walk on a harness. If you have the ability to provide a place to swim, many Bengal Cats really enjoy that exercise activity. Things as simple as playing with a feather on a string give your Bengal some stimulation and also improve the bonding that occurs between you and your cat.
In Summary – What Is The Temperament Of A Bengal Cat?
Bengal Cats tend to be loving cats with energetic but even temperaments. You’ll want to provide them with plenty of care to keep them out of trouble, making them less than ideal pets for someone who isn’t going to be home very often. While these cats have wild ancestry within the last few decades, they are truly domesticated housecats and deserve lots of love in their own right.