Cat Breeds 101: Savannah!

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Cat Breeds 101: Savannah!Photo – Wikipedia – lic. under CC 3.0

The Savannah is a medium-sized hybrid cat developed by crossing a Serval and a domestic feline. The first Savannah cat was produced on April 7, 1986. [1]

This breed became popular in the late 1990s, but the Savannah was not recognized by the International Cat Association until 2001. The following year, the Savannah was registered as a championship breed.

The Savannah is easily recognized by its bold markings and dark spots. They have a tall, lean and slim build which makes them appear larger than they actually are. As kittens, Savannahs have blue eyes, but as they grow older the color may change to gold, brown, green, or dark gray. In addition to their “boomerang-shaped” eye markings, this breed has heavy brows protecting their eyes from harsh sunlight. [2] The Savannah cats’ peculiar features make this domesticated cat look particularly wild.

In terms of loyalty, Savannah cats are often compared to canines. Like other feline breeds, the Savannah tends to follow their master all around the house. Owners of this cat have reported that the breed can be very friendly toward children and other pets at home, even dogs. [3] However, it is not uncommon for them to be entirely unwelcoming toward strangers. In fact, they may hiss or growl whenever they encounter them.

The Savannah is known to be highly active, curious and inquisitive. Therefore, this cat will be prone to all sorts of trouble. Also, they are happy and confident cats that love to interact with humans. And unlike most cats, this one enjoys playing with water.

How friendly your Savannah will be relies heavily on early socialization and positive reinforcement. If the owner does not invest in such training, the cat may become shy and only be seen when the party is over.

[1] Nancy Robbins, Domestic Cats: Their History, Breeds and Other Facts (Nancy Robbins, 2012).
[3] Jill C. Wheeler, Savannah Cats (ABDO, 2011).

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