Is a Bengal Cat The Same as a Savannah? - Bengal Cat Club
is a bengal cat the same as a savannah

Is a Bengal Cat The Same as a Savannah?

Two of the most popular hybrid cat breeds, Bengals and Savannahs have similarities and differences between them. To fully understand what makes these breeds different yet similar, let’s take a deeper look into it with these topics:

  • The Origins
  • The Similarities and Differences
  • Genetic Similarity

The Origins

To start with, we need to understand where each of these breeds comes from and what gives them each the characteristics that make them unique from domestic cats.

Our primary breed, Bengal cats are an Asian Leopard Cat (ALC) and a domestic cat bred together. Breeding these cats together doesn’t just give owners a fun and unique pet cat to enjoy and live with, researchers look into this breed and its ancestor ALC’s genetics to find a cure or treatment for Leukemia in humans.

Savannah cats, on the other hand, are an African Serval cat (ASC) bred with a domestic Persian cat. This breed can be very large, even as big as a large breed dog, and even the average size is significantly larger than that of a Bengal.

These wild cats, from different continents, have very varied characteristics between them that is passed down through the generations to the filials.

The Similarities and Differences

There are many similarities between Bengals and Savannahs that remind owners that these breeds are similar in ways. One of these similarities is that cats from both breeds are known for their love of water, especially playing in it.

They also both, like many cats, enjoy utilizing scratching posts, as well as finding a dangling cord to be an attention getter. They both show affection to those that they love, are intelligent and active cats whose breeds were both first bred in the United States.

They have similarities in their coat health as well including moderate shedding, coming in spotted and tabby coats, and having a short, low maintenance coat.

But there are, of course, important and substantial differences between these breeds as well. Such as their similarity in coats, Bengals also come in a marbled coat print unlike the Savannah. Bengal coats are also notoriously more detailed than that of the Savannah.

Bengals are of a muscular build while Savannahs are lean by nature. In opposition, Savannahs are more intense and persistent cats than the Bengal is.

Largest Domestic Cat Breed advises that Savannahs are also significantly larger than Bengals, in size and weight. They are about twice the size of Bengals on average. This means that the Savannah is much more agile, can jump higher, and run faster. Having a larger amount of space for the cat to live in is more important when owning a Savannah than when owning a Bengal.

Having more space for a Savannah than would be recommended when owning a Bengal helps when living with a Savannah because they are more capable and likely of getting into more trouble than a Bengal can or will. This physical attribute leads to a significant difference between the two breeds despite their genetic similarities.

Genetic Similarity

A significant similarity between Bengals and Savannahs traces back to their genetic origins. Both breeds are made by breeding a wild cat with a domestic cat breed. The difference here, keeping these breeds distinctly unique, is what wild cat is used in breeding as well as which domestic cat breed is.

Both breeds are therefore influenced characteristically by their wild cat ancestry as well as the characteristics of their domestic breed(s) ancestry used in breeding.

Since a Bengal is an ALC bred with a domestic cat, a Bengal could be related to a Savannah if the same Persian cat is bred with an ALC and with an ASC. This would make the kittens produced from each litter full siblings with the other kittens in the litter and half siblings with the other breed’s litter.

Should each of these litter then have litters of their own, the kittens produced from this second breeding, F2 Bengals and F2 Savannahs, would be cousins, just with a different wild cat ancestor.

To see how these cousins might interact, check out the video below to see a Bengal and a Savannah wrestling and playing together.

As discussed, there are some similarities between Bengals and Savannahs but they are still distinctly different cat breeds. It’s important to remember the ancestral difference between these breeds, as it substantially effects the characteristics of the breeds.

So, what do you think about the differences between Bengals cats and Savannah cats?  Do you agree with what was said here?  Comment below to let us know!

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