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5 Popular Exotic Cat Breeds That Are Legal To Own!

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Looking for Exotic Cat Breeds? Keeping exotic cat as pets might seem a great idea: beautiful, graceful, elegant – they catch the eye and hypnotize with their posture and movements. However, you should think twice before letting one in your house.

With their enormous beauty, come tremendous difficulties and challenges with behavior, feeding and care. Expecting a wild cat to behave like a domestic one is the biggest mistake done by many owners.

Which wild cat might become a good companion, and what you should know about such animals? Let’s overview the most popular options.

Exotic Cat Breeds

1. Ocelot

This small wild cat originates from South America. It has distinctive markings on the body and big eyes, which makes this species very appealing and unusual. It’s very difficult to find ocelots for sale, such a pet is a rare occasion, though Salvador Dali used to have one.

If you’re considering owning an ocelot, you should know it’s very hard to maintain and even harder to train. These wild cats do not have social skills and rarely let people pet them. Don’t expect them to obey your commands, and training is very likely to be fruitless.

Also, ocelots have a specific unpleasant smell and produce intense growling, so it’s not an option for a family with small kids. The good news is that ocelots may live up to 20 years in captivity and have a diverse diet (birds, fish, small mammals, birds, insects).

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2. Caracal

This wild cat comes from Africa and some Asian countries. Sandy fur and long elf-like ears make it remind of puma and lynx mixed together. If you don’t like loud cats, this one may be just right for you because caracals prefer hissing. One more thing which makes them suitable for petting is that caracals may interact with the owner, play, and even allows a slight touch – all on their terms, of course. Yet that does not mean such a cat will show affection or let you express it: the games might become pretty violent and destructive.

3. Geoffroy’s cat

Opposite to other wild mates, Geoffroy’s cats are pretty small (4-8 lbs) and won’t hurt you seriously. They have leopard-like coloring and can survive in extreme weather conditions. If you want to acquire such a cat, be prepared for a long and tiresome search – they are hard to find because there are not so many domestic cats in the world. Besides, trading is regulated very strictly.

Geoffroy’s cats are not likely to show their affection and can become pretty aggressive. Such a pet needs a lot of private space and can get pretty noisy. You should keep a distance and give your pet some time to get used to living at home.

4. Asian Leopard Cat

Another ‘compact’ and safe cat in this list, Asian Leopard cat, is as big as domestic species. Such pet may live up to 13 years in captivity and mostly eats rodents, so it won’t be hard to find food for it. Such cats are pretty shy and prefer a nocturnal lifestyle. It’s better to build a separate enclosure for such a cat because it isn’t likely to feel comfortable at home. The less you disturb it, the less aggressive it will be.

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At the same time, the owner can try to tame such a cat – it’s possible if the contact is frequent and stress-free. Since one subspecies of Asian Leopard cat is on the brink of extinction, obtaining such an animal might be hard, and you need certain documents for owning it.

5. Servals

One of the most popular wild cat breeds in the US, servals remind of cheetah due to their long legs and similar coloring. Long fox-like ears are its main distinguishing feature. The animal is pretty safe for keeping home – it is not prone to aggression. If a person irritates a serval, it will flee and avoid its presence

Servals prefer being alone but will tolerate other pets in the household. Just build a separate open-air cage, and you both will feel comfortable. There’s no need to create a zone for climbing like a tree – servals do not need it.

Is it fun to have such a pet? Servals can be walked and trained, so you will enjoy its audience. Be prepared to move a lot together with such a pet – it requires regular physical exercise to avoid overweight.

Bottom Line

Having an exotic cat living side-by-side with you is both pleasure and a great responsibility. Each wild cat has special needs in diet, wants a lot of personal space, and can be quite capricious. So if you decide to adopt such a pet, you should prepare for it thoroughly. Learn how to maintain such a cat, which living conditions it needs, and whether it’s possible/advisable to train it. Being a wild cat owner requires a lot of dedication, but it’s worth all the efforts.

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