The Savannah cat has become very popular in the past decade or so. For people who don’t know about this cat, it’s a hybrid breed of cats that is crossed between a Serval and a domestic cat. It is one of the largest cat breeds in the world, and it rose to fame in the 1990s, when breeders began to work with them.
By 2001, the International Cat Association had accepted the breed as a newly registered one. By 2012, it was classified as a championship breed. The first Savannah cat was bred in 1986, and since then, the cat has become more and more popular. In fact, many people who want a unique looking cat will usually always go for a Savannah.
Are They Dangerous?
You might have heard that Savannah cats are dangerous. Some will say that the danger usually arises from the fact that it was bred with a wild Serval, and thus, will never develop domestic tendencies. Clearly, that’s not true. If you have ever met a Savannah cat, you would know that these cats are anything but dangerous.
Despite the fact that they trace their roots to the wild breed of cats that usually turn destructive, there’s really no proof that these cats also turn destructive. In fact, much of what you might have learned about these cats is generally hearsay. The Savannah cat poses absolutely no harm to humans.
If you adopt one, you don’t need to worry about adopting a feline that is part wildcat. The best way to determine the tendencies of the cat and its behavior is by talking to the breeder and finding out more about its parents.
To give you a better idea about just how distant the Savannah cat is when compared to its wild ancestors, breeders usually prefer to explain using filial generation.
For instance, a direct cross between a domestic cat and a Serval will usually result in what is known as the F1 Savannah cat. Essentially, what this means is that the cat will give birth to offspring that are equal parts wildcat and domestic.
Now, the typical cat that is sold in the market is sired by a male F6 Savannah cat. By the time the cat reaches F4, the temperament of the cat becomes considerably more stable, and the size also meets the average standards that you might have read about. As a result of the breeding, by the time it reaches F4, all of its instincts are bred out, and it still retains its distinct personality.
Therefore, you should know that there is absolutely no danger to you for owning the Savannah cat. If you are interested in bringing a Savannah cat into your house, there are a few things that you are going to need to change. If you haven’t owned a cat before, here are just a few things that you need to understand.
Understanding Destructive Behavior
As mentioned above, these cats often turn destructive when they realize that they are being ignored. If the cat doesn’t get physically and mentally stimulated, it is going to exhibit destructive behavior. The best way to ensure that this tendency remains at bay is to engage with the cat as much as you can.
You can easily buy cat toys and other things that the animal will like and place them around the house or in its playpen. If you have dedicated a specific space for the cat to play in, make sure you put in the toys and shake things up. More importantly, you should dedicate at least an hour of play time for your cat. They love to hang around with their owners.
Tweaking the Setup
When you are bringing a large cat breed such as the Savannah into your house, it is important that you prepare the house before doing so. First of all, take a look at all exit points and close them off. Once your cat manages to get outside without proper training, there is a very low chance of it returning back to the house.
You also need to make sure that you make the entire place cat-proof. These cats are incredibly intelligent and they are able to easily figure out just how different things work. Therefore, it might be a wise idea to err on the side of caution and make adjustments around the house.
If you can, it’s a wise idea to install a few perches around the house. Savannah cats love to jump on wall shelves and perches, and it gives them a lot of stimulation. Thankfully, wall shelves and perches for cats are readily available in the market, so you don’t have to do a lot of research on your own.
Learn to Play with the Cat
Are Savannah cats dangerous? Definitely not, but they are likely to turn destructive if you don’t give the cat enough time. This isn’t exactly a problem, you just need to devote around one hour of your day to play with the cat. Most Savannahs just want to be around their owners, and they will be willing to give you all of their love as a result.
Unlike various other breeds, the Savannah isn’t an aloof cat. In fact, the cat really doesn’t like to be left to its own devices. This is a very social breed and loves to spend as much time as possible with its owners, so you have to come up with different ways to keep the cat engaged. These are also bigger cat breeds, so it’s important that you buy sturdy chew toys or toys for the cat.
The Savannah is also easily trainable. Just like dogs, the Savannah can be trained to go outside for a while and you can easily teach it to run around the backyard and play with you. There are even some owners who have managed to teach fetch to the cat. So, it’s really a fun way to bond with the animal.
Neuter the Cat
You also need to consider neutering or spaying the cat once it reaches around six months of age. This is imperative because it helps control the population of the animal and also prevents it from serious health problems as the cat grows old. You have to make sure that you make an appointment with a vet and neuter or spay the cat as necessary.
The Savannah cat is a fun cat that will have a strong presence in the house. Don’t expect this cat to just lounge around the house and be ignored; it’s relatively vocal when its needs are not being met. Furthermore, you might want to make sure that the cat’s claws are trimmed on a regular basis. Otherwise, it’s really going to tear into the furniture and use it as a scratching post.
These are just a few things that you should know about the Savannah cat and its unique traits. It’s a gorgeous cat that is sure to turn heads!