The Bengal Cat
Bengal cat makes a loving, intelligent housecat. Curious and
entertaining, some even enjoy playing in water and bathing with
their owners. They enjoy the companionship of both adults and
children and usually adapt to other family pets. Some owners
regularly walk their Bengals on leashes. Exercise, nutritional
and immunization requirements are the same as for all domestic
household cats. The domestic Bengal (four generations or more
Asian Leopard Cat)
has normal litter box habits, is recognized in several cat fancy
registries and currently makes up the largest number of cats
competing in The International Cat Association (TICA). Also
recognized by registries such as AACE, ACF, ACFA, CCA, FIFE,
GCCF, FIFE, NZCF and QICC, this entertaining and affectionate
cat is finding its way into more and more living rooms.
The first registry to recognize the Bengal, The International Cat Association (TICA) recognizes several colors (brown, seal lynx point, mink, sepia, silver) and patterns (spotted and marbled) for Championship competition. In the New Traits class, any other color may be shown, as well as longhair bengals.
Spotted Tabby Bengals
spotted tabby (leopard spotted) Bengals have dark spots on a
lighter ground color ranging from gray or tawny to sorrel to
golden, very rufused (bright orange) and to a rich mahogony.
Note: The Asian Leopard Cat is considered a brown spotted tabby
in the cat fancy and ranges somewhat in color.
Brown includes variations of
tawny, sorrel, golden, hot rufus and mahogany.
Lynx Point, Sepia and Mink Spotted Tabby Bengals
The seal lynx
point (blue-eyed) and seal sepia (gold or green-eyed) spotted
tabbies (fondly referred to by breeders as two of the "snow"
leopard spotteds) have ivory backgrounds with contrasting spots.
The seal mink (aqua or green-eyed) spotted is a combination of
one each of the above pointed Siamese and the Burmese sepia
genes. Extreme contrast between the markings and the ground
color is desirable in each spotted color.
Spotted Seal Lynx Point Bengal
Spots of all
colors and patterns vary in color, size, rosetting and intensity
but preference is given to random and horizontal pattern
alignment with wide spacing or "acreage".
tabby gene creates the marbled Bengal and represents a change of
pattern from spotted to swirled or marbleized. This dramatic
pattern is comprised of swirls of brown spotted colors flowing
in a horizontal fashion instead of traditional spots. Preference
is given to the more horizontal, flowing and "ocelot-like"
patterns. The "marbled" pattern can also occur in lynx, sepia
and mink color/patterns (see above).
A Brown Marbled Tabby and a Seal Lynx Point Marbled Tabby
Colors & Characteristics
the high shine (usually on a clear, nonticked coat) that has
been discovered and developed in the Bengal is a welcome
addition to the breed.
the dark outlining of coat markings (both in the spotted and
marbled) that are around a third rich color, are found in many
Asian Leopard Cats and other wild cat species. Rosettes showing
two distinct colors or shades, such as paw print shaped,
arrowhead shaped, doughnut or half-doughnut shaped or clustered
are preferred to single spotting but not required.
Bengal kittens go through what is referred to as the "fuzzy
uglies". A beautifully clear kitten at three weeks old may
begin to acquire a ticked kitten coat at four to five weeks old.
This coat begins to clear again to higher contrast at about 12
weeks and is again breathtaking by 6 months.
There are a variety of other colors (such as blue, black, torbie,
etc.) and characteristics (long hair, flat face, etc.) of the
Bengal cat which are derived from the domestic genes that DO NOT
meet the Bengal standard in
TICA... but which may be quite
beautiful and shown in UFO and other registries.
are relatively large-boned, shorthaired cats with males
averaging from 10 to 15 pounds and females usually smaller. The
face should have a distinctly non-domestic expression, with small,
rounded ears and intense facial markings. Careful selection
ensures Bengal cats that are friendly, loving domestic cats that
bear a strong physical resemblance to their Asian Leopard Cat
ancestors. Please click on
read an article about the Bengal's head and face.
are categorized as to their quality when compared to the
TICA Bengal Standard.
The Standard for the Bengal cat describes the ideal. Kittens are
sold either as pets to be altered, breeders and/or show quality
cats. Show quality is the best of the best. Breeder quality is a
good cat that has something lovely to offer the breed and no
faults or perhaps one or two less desirable traits that can bred
out in a generation. Pet quality is a cat that for some reason
the breeder feels does not qualify to be offered as a breeder or
show cat. This might be due to a visual undesirable trait such
as a spot of white color on the throat or groin (referred to as
a locket) or a genetic defect that might put offspring at risk
for ill health.
standards as accepted by other cat registries in other countries may vary