1.) What is a Bengal? A) Bengals originally came from the breeding of Asian leopard cats and domestic cats. For more info on this subject please see our "About Bengals" page.
2.)What is the temperament of a bengal? Is it wild? A.)Bengals are pretty much like your average house cat. They also have distinct personalities according to the individual just like other domestics. Generally they are friendly and outgoing. Most are very good climbers and jumpers because Asian Leopard cats in the wild catch and eat birds. It is not uncommon for bengals to like water and this is because Asian leopard cat catches and eats fish. Bengals tend to be very intelligent and are easy to leash train. Generally they do not make lazy lap cats as they remain active throughout their lives. They are very playful, but can be loving and cuddly too. Of course there are exceptions to this and not all bengals act the same or like the same things. Bengals tend to be the boss and like things on their own terms. Especially when it comes to being held.
3.) What do bengals eat? Can they eat regular cat food? A) Bengals can eat dry food, however, I personally like to feed my bengals closer to what they would consume in the wild. I feed my bengals raw meat. This diet is easy for cats to digest because cats were designed to eat raw meat (we never see cats building fires and cooking meat in the wild). They tend to eat less because they can digest the food better and they receive the nutrients they need easier. Fat cats lose weight and skinny cats gain weight on this diet. It also eliminates any stomach and bowel problems. Cats with a history of loose stools and vomiting soon get better on a raw meat diet. Another good thing about feeding raw is it costs less and there are no stinky stools. That's right, no smell whatsoever!!! Best of all it is healthy. I have found personally that this is the best diet there is. I'm not a scientist though so please do your research before switching and if you decide it's best for you, switch over slowly. The only downside to feeding raw is the time it takes to prepare the meals. You can reduce your time considerably if you make a large batch of raw food and freeze it in individual servings, which should last one or two cats a very long time. I have a cattery so my prep time is a lot longer then if you are just feeding a few cats this diet. All of my kittens are fed a raw diet while they are with me. I know that not everyone can feed raw but I do encourage it. If you feed your own homemade raw, please be sure to stick closely to our raw diet recipe. You must feed a BALANCED raw diet. Cats cannot live on meat only. They must have the correct amount of bone in the diet as well. If you ever have any questions on the raw diet please do not hesitate to contact me. I would rather you feed a balanced raw diet, but I would rather you feed commercial food than an unbalanced raw diet. The raw diet is easy to feed as long as you stick closely to my raw diet recipe. The biggest thing to remember is feed the whole prey animal. Meat/bones and organ meats. Muscle meat being in the greatest quantity, then bone, then organ meats. If you buy a whole chicken with giblets, grind up the whole chicken, bones and all, and grind the giblets in, you will have a balanced meal. To this you can add a few supplements if you wish. I like to add taurine and a bit of brewers yeast. You don't need to add much. Don't overdo it with the supplements. More is not better. Just picture what a cat would eat in the wild if they caught a meal. That is a balanced raw meal.
4.)Do bengals get along with other cats/dog/children? A) Just like any other cat there may be a period of adjustment for your new bengal. Most bengals will eventually get along with your cat/dog once they become familiar with them and know that they are safe to be around. Bengals tend to like children because they are playful and children like to play with them. As with any cat though you have to be careful about letting very small children play with your bengal unsupervised. Any cat can inflict harm on a small child when frightened or hurt.
5.) How big do bengals get? A) The Asian leopard cat is a small wild cat getting no larger then a domestic in size. Therefore bengals do not tend to get any larger than most domestics. Males are generally larger than females weighing anywhere from 10-15 lbs. and females from 7-10 lbs.
6.) What makes better pets, males or females? This is a very common question. I'd say that as long as the cat is neutered or spayed there isn't much of a difference in personality. Generally speaking, it mostly depends on the personality of the individual cat and to some degree how well the cat was socialized as a kitten. Even cats from the same litter and the same sex can be very different from one another. I have had litters where the girls were outgoing and friendly and some of the males were more shy, and vise versa. Now if I had to choose between the sexes, I'd be very slightly in favor of the males. The reason is that females tend to be more independent. Again though, there are many exceptions to this. If you're looking for a certain personality, don't limit yourself to one sex or the other. It is best to meet the kittens you're interested in to see which personalities you like. It is normal for kittens to be shy towards strangers at first so don't take that as a sign that the kitten is not social or friendly.
7.) I currently have a female cat, what should I get, a female or a male kitten? OR I currently have a male cat, what should I get, a female or a male kitten? Most people believe that one sex of cat will get along better with the same sex or get along better with the opposite sex. Again, as long as the kitten you get is spayed or neutered and so is the current cat, it does not matter which sex of kitten you choose to bring home. No matter what the sex, it would depend on the personality mostly of the current cat at home. Generally speaking, the new kitten will try to play with the resident cat. The resident cat will not like the idea of another cat in his or her territory and hiss and maybe even swat at the kitten. Usually the kitten will back down but be persistent in trying to play with the resident cat. Eventually they usually work out a compromise and get along. If your current cat is the type that never wants to play or be bothered, I highly recommend that you get two kittens to keep each other busy. I really like for my kittens to go to homes together so if your considering getting two, I will usually give you a discount, just ask!
8.)Are Bengals mean? What is their personality like? Many people mistakenly assume bengals are mean because they look wild. A bengal that is 4 generations removed from a wild cat (SBT) has only a small percentage of wild blood left. Bengals are not mean cats at all (unless they are not socialized and are feral). They will cuddle you and sit on your lap. I have noticed with almost all of my bengals though that since they have lots of energy and love to play, they don't care for being picked up or held down. Bengals decide when they are ready to settle down, and then they will come to you for love. Most will crawl into your lap when they are ready for lovin. Bengals tend to be very energetic and they are very playful. They like to get up really high and will get into/onto cabinets, closet shelves, fireplace mantels, shower doors and anywhere else that is high. Providing a tall cat tree for them helps to keep the off of other things. Because bengals are so playful, they tend to do better in pairs or with another playmate such as a dog. If you're looking for a cat that sleeps all of the time and lays in your lap constantly, a bengal is not the type of cat for you, however, if you're looking for constant entertainment, a bengal is perfect for you!
9.)I have heard all bengals love water, is this true? In short, NO, not ALL bengals love water. For early generation bengals, most of them love water because asian leopard cats fish and hunt in water and they also defecate and urinate in running water, so EG's tend to take after the Asian Leopard cat. However, some SBT bengals tend to be more like that of a domestic cat. Many SBT bengals do have a curiosity when it comes to water, but won't actually play in water. Many of them like to play in water with just the paws and make a mess with water dishes. I can hardly keep water dishes filled when litters come around because kittens like to swat all of the water out of them onto the floor. Some of them actually will get into water or go out of their way to walk through puddles of water, play in tubs and toilets. I have noticed that if kittens are bathed from an early age, they tend to be more fascinated with water then ones that are not. It all depends on the individual cat.
10.) I have been to a website that says , among other negative things, that ALL bengals spray urine/mark territory, is this true? ABSOLUTELY NOT! SBT bengals spray no more than any other breed of cat. Early generation bengals (first 4 generations of bengals), commonly referred to as F1, F2, F3 and F4 tend to spray more than an SBT would. The reason is they are not as domesticated as the SBT level. All of my bengals are SBT's. NONE of my females spray nor have they ever sprayed and they are all unspayed. Only one of my studs sprays on a regular basis. Some of the other ones spray occasionally and a couple of them don't spray at all. None of the neutered cats I have sold have ever have been reported to spray If they were neutered/spayed in a timely manner. If your concerned about spraying, make sure your cat is spayed or neutered BEFORE they reach sexual maturity. Some cats reach sexual maturity as early as 5-6 months old. Spraying is NOT a bengal thing. All cats have the capability to spray, some will in all breeds. Just be sure there is no previous urine marks in your home and be sure to get the kitten spayed or neutered as early as possible and chances are you will never have a spraying problem.
11.) Q. Are Bengals Hybrids? A. No. Bengals originated from the crossing of a wild cat with a domestic, however, bred down many generations the breed is now considered domestic and has very little Asian leopard Cat blood. The Asian Leopard Cat coat pattern and "look" were carefully selected for in offspring thus creating a domestic cat in temperament that looks wild. Asian Leopard Cats are no longer needed to keep the bengal breed going. Some breeders do use Asian Leopard Cats and breed for early generation bengals, which are not considered domestic, however, they are not able to compete in shows and are not considered domestic until many generations of bengal to bengal breeding. Early generation bengals (not considered domestic) do not always make good pets. So before buying a bengal as a pet, make sure it is an SBT. If you intend to purchase an early generation bengal, be sure to do your research and to visit the breeder ahead of time to know what your getting yourself into. Again, early generations bengals (also sometimes called F1, F2, F3) and NOT considered a domestic bengal until after 4 generations of bengal to bengal breeding!
12.) Q: Should Bengals receive vaccinations and health care like regular cats? A: For most health issues Bengals should receive the same care as other domestic cats. There are a few exceptions which I will go over with you when you purchase the cat. However, it is our personal belief that cats in general may not need to be vaccinated exactly like many vets recommend. For our vaccination policy and for more information on vaccines, please go to the "Cattery" menu link.
IT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO BE INFORMED ABOUT THE BEST CARE FOR YOUR NEW KITTEN/CAT WHICH WILL BECOME YOUR NEW FAMILY MEMBER! PLEASE DON'T LEAVE IT UP TO THE VETS TO MAKE ALL OF THE HEALTH CARE DECISIONS FOR YOU. BE INFORMED IN ADVANCE, HAVE YOUR INFORMATION READY, AND BE WILLING TO PRESENT INFORMATION TO YOUR VET IF NEEDED.