In a few decades, Bengal has conquered the hearts of the French. Perhaps because the beast that lies dormant in him has become as gentle as a lamb to live by our side.
The incredible story of the bengal begins in Arizona in 1963. As part of her research on feline leukosis, the American geneticist Jean Mill acquired an Asian leopard cat, which recent discoveries attest to. was naturally immune to the disease. She decides to cross the feline with a domestic cat. The pups born from this hybridization, of astonishing beauty, have the appearance of panthers with characteristic fur (sprinkled with gold and speckled with rosettes set in black) the size of a cat. Captivated by this discovery, the scientist sets out to create a new breed: the Bengal. The project is in line with his convictions: if we can accommodate a little panther in our home, we will be less inclined to exploit it.
The first generation of Bengals gives almost wild kittens, which cannot be sold to private individuals. It is only from the fifth generation that hybridized cats are considered domestic animals.
A WILD-LOOKING ATHLETE
If the Bengal owes its spotted coat to its ancestor, it also borrowed its identifiable morphology at first glance: a head smaller than the body, a fairly long and muscular neck, rounded eyes placed very low, a muzzle broad, small ears, taller hind legs and a thick tail set low on the rump. Its musculature is powerful from the head to the legs, which are strong and round with prominent toes.
“The Bengal is, like a beast, capable of moving in the night, in search of prey, of being on the lookout, then of pouncing”, specifies the breeder Marie-Ève Bédard of Shaushka Bengals cattery. However, he can be “excessively cuddly” even if “he does not like to be hugged because, being small, he can have the feeling of being captured”.
AN INSATIABLE EXPLORER
Bengal has a curious, lively and fearless character. At home, it requires almost constant stimulation, intellectually, physically and emotionally. He likes to climb everywhere. Offering him a wall space with a perch and a cat wheel will give him a 3D playground from floor to ceiling. He needs to reproduce hunting, stalking or pursuit behaviors. Or just play two-meter jumps before you land on it.
Contrary to popular belief about cats, the Bengal is irresistibly drawn to water. “Water points, taps, sink plugs, showers and even bathtubs fascinate him. He loves water like his ancestors of Asian leopard cats, who were fishermen, ”explains the breeder.