There are hundreds of varieties of domesticated cats and the list keeps growing as breeders introduce new hybrids to the pride. Cats are some of the most highly favored pets in the world.
The domestic connection between felines and humans goes back more than twelve thousand years in our history. Cats have evolved through the centuries into multiple different breeds and hybrids.
They have been loyal and loving pets for humans for centuries. All cats are not the same. Although they do share some common traits, each breed has its own unique characteristics and traits.
Through the ages, people have cross-bred them to produce more unique and interesting breeds that caught on and became popular. They come in all shapes and sizes. Among the most desired breed is the Bengal cat. They are distinctly different than all other breeds of domestic cats. If you’re new to the world of Bengals, then here are twenty fun facts that you didn’t know about them.
1. Bengal cats enjoy the water
This may sound like some kind of joke, but we’re serious. When we said that Bengals are different than other domestic felines, we were being honest. This fascinating breed loves to get wet.
While most others will fight you claw and fang to avoid a bathtub, your Bengal will be thankful for a dip in the tub. It is not unheard of for a Bengal cat to take a swim in the family swimming pool.
This could be dangerous if there is not an access point for them to safely climb out, so great care should be taken for pool owners. The reason that they are so fond of the water is because their ancestors were great hunters and fishers. In fact, if you have an aquarium with fish, you will need to take precautions to make certain that your Bengal cannot get into the tank.
They are also good swimmers so it’s important to keep an eye on them around bodies of water. They drink water a bit differently as well. Instead of lapping it up with their tongues, they prefer to dip their paws into it and lick it off.
2. Descendants of wild ancestors
Bengal cats did not evolve on their own. They are the result of cross breeding domestic cats with members of the Asian leopard family. They have a tendency to revert back to wild behaviors so if you are looking for a sedentary breed, this may not be the best choice for you. At the same time time it’s pretty amazing to watch these animals as their instincts tend to be better than the majority of domesticated cats. If you enjoy a “zoo” like atmosphere you’ll get entertainment on a daily basis.
3. They are avid climbers
Bengals are very athletic cats and they have an amazing ability to climb into difficult to reach places. They are also great jumpers. Their behaviors are much like that of their ancestors. These behaviors are believed to be instinctual from the leopard genes that they carry. As such you might want to consider having things around the house they can climb on or taking them outside once in a while so they can partake in this activity.
4. Bengals require lots of toys
Any Bengal cat owner will smile at this statement. Bengal cats love to play and they prefer to have toys to bat around and chew on. It’s always a good idea to keep them well stocked with a variety of different toys. If they get bored, they may target some of your personal belongings to adopt as their own. Since these cats tend to get a little rough in their play, toys may become damaged and in need of replacement. Be vigilant to discard any cat toy that is worn to avoid the potential for choking. They also like playing games and being challenged.
5. They will get your attention
Bengals are hard core attention seekers. They truly enjoy spending quality time with their owners and other cats. If you neglect them, they will not develop as normally as they otherwise would if you showered them with love. they like to play and interact with humans. When denied interaction or attention, they may suffer emotionally and become alienated. Be careful when caring from your Bengal Cat. They are smart animals and know when they are being neglected.
6. Their temperament depends on training and development
Training is an important part of the personality and behavioral development of all felines. Bengals are no exception, but there is a caveat here that we should mention. This breed of cat may have more similarity to a domestic cat in some cases, or to their native wild leopard in others. Breeders recommend only purchasing Bengals who are fourth generation or later if the intention is to keep them as a pet. This helps to avoid wild behaviors which could be a problem with first, second or third generations.
7. Bengals have high intelligence
This is a very important fact to know about Bengal cats because their high intelligence means that they need to be mentally stimulated and often challenged. They are very fact to process and learn new concepts and tricks. This also counts towards training and manners. They learn very quickly if you are consistent with them. Also, remember to watch these guys closely. They can figure out some things that humans can so they can be quite sneaky.
8. They follow their owners everywhere
This is something that new owners must be aware of. They will follow you into the bathroom when you go to take a bath. If you allow them to stay in the room with you, your Bengal cat may even jump into the bathtub with you to enjoy a quick splash. When you set your Bengal kitty outside of the bathroom door, he may break out into loud meows of complaint to let you know that he wants to get back inside with you.
9. Bengals leash train easily
Most cats will raise a terrible fuss if you attempt to attach them to a leash. Bengals are different in this regard. If you start leash training your cat when he or she is just a kitten, the task will be much easier, however; adult Bengals may also be leash trained without too much difficulty. They are not as likely to tear you up during the process as most other cat breeds.
10. They have dog attributes
This is one fact about Bengal cats that few people believe until they have actually had personal experience with the breed. They are surprisingly similar to dogs. You’ll notice that they play the same kinds of games, and they also love to be taken out for regular walks. They won’t mind the leash either. While they do have these attributes, never forget these animals are felines and should be treated as such.
11. Bengals are dog friendly
Their tendency to make friends with dogs is one of the more interesting things about them. Although each cat is an individual, and it does depend on their experiences with dogs, many Bengals make great friends with family dogs. If the dog shows a Bengal the appropriate friendly behaviors, you may have two pals for life.
12. Bengal kittens are destructive by nature
This is another important fact that you should consider before getting a Bengal. The kittens have a natural instinct to rip and tear. They particularly delight in scratching and shredding furniture and other items from around the house. Until they are properly trained, nothing in your home will be safe from their destructive nature.
13. They are natural burglars
Bengals are well noted burglars. They will take personal objects from around the house and hide them in their special places. This includes car keys, money, jewelry, and other items that they are attracted to. Their playful nature makes them drawn to unique objects that they find fascinating. They are also known for shredding anything that is made of paper from a bag to important documents. It’s important to keep all valuables hidden out of their sight and stored in places that are inaccessible to your Bengal.
14. Bengals are bird hunters
It’s not a good idea to have a pet bird if you are going to own a Bengal cat. They are natural bird hunters. This includes both those which are found in the wild, and any pets which are in cages. They will pull out all of the stops when stalking their prey, and arising the victor of the hunt.
15. Bengals are ramblers
They love to travel and they are very active. They are not at all like most house cats who enjoy lazing around the house. They are great explorers and are also a bit on the nosy side. Bengals will not rest until they know every nook and cranny of the house, so if you are the type of person who craves privacy, this breed may not be the most suitable choice.
16. Their fur glitters
This is something that you may not notice if you’re just looking at a photograph of a Bengal. They have fur that is magnificently spotted and marbled and this is particular to every member of the breed, but some Bengals are more special than others. There is a certain gene that is passed through select Bengal lines that is known as the “glitter gene.” It makes their coat shimmer magnificently.
As kittens, their coats are very fuzzy and it the color begins to blur. This is a part of the development process that begins at three weeks of age. It continues until the kitten is 16 weeks old,when the beautiful markings begin to emerge and they take on the physical traits of leopards. The hair is short and thick so it will need to be brushed weekly to distribute the natural oils evenly.
17. They are selective biters
Bengals have an instinctual need to bite. If they are not sufficiently challenged or if your Bengal becomes bored, he will start biting your furniture or other household items. The one fascinating thing about Bengals that they are not prone to biting people. If your Bengal is properly socialized and trained he will avoid causing any harm to people.
18. Friendly and gentle nature
Bengal cats are known for their gentleness towards humans. It is rare when one will do harm to a person. When a Bengal plays with a human member of his family, he keeps his claws retracted so he doesn’t scratch them. They are a cat breed with a tendency to have a quite friendly nature. It is characteristic of Bengal cats to become very attached to one family member in particular. They will be loving, affectionate and loyal to that one special person for life. The catch is, the Bengal is the only one who will make this choice about who that lucky human will be.
19. Bengal cats are finicky about their toilet habits
This is one of the more important facts about Bengals that you will need to know if you value a clean house. They are very selective about where they toilet. They demand a kitty litter box that is so clean it will be close to spotless. This may mean that you will need to spend a great deal of time keeping it clean. This is not an exaggeration.
If a Bengal cat feels that their litter box is not clean enough, they will find another place in the house to go.This could turn into a big problem if you prefer to keep a litter box. The other best option is to start early when your Bengal is still a kitten, and train him to toilet outside. Some owners have been very successful in teaching their Bengal cats to use the toilet. It takes great time and effort, but because of the high intelligence of the breed, it is possible.
20. Bengals require knowledgeable owners
Because this breed of cat is so different from all of the others, it’s not a good idea to own one if you are inexperienced and don’t know what you’re getting yourself into. They are amazingly beautiful pets and they are loyal to the person that they love, but if you do not know what to expect from this particular breed, your home could be ruined and left in a shambles.
Bengals also have some very adorable traits but very distinct needs. If you have a strong desire to become the proud owner of one, the information that you need to consider is found right here. If you have any reservations about it, you should quite possibly benefit from considering a different breed that is less challenging.
Bengals are generally best suited for experienced cat owners who understand the needs and peculiarities of cats in general, but also, people who are willing to do the research about what is required of Bengal owners and what to expect when bringing one home.
You can also read:
- 10 of the Funniest Stories about Bengal Cats
- Bengal Cat Personality: Five Things You Need to Know
- A Complete Price Guide for Bengal Cats