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Savannah cats
About the breed

 

Savannah cats are a result of "love" between the wild African Serval cat and a domestic cat.

Many people, when they see Savannah cat for the first time, notice its uniqueness and become big fans of this breed. Visually Savannah resembles a small cheetah. Noble posture, unusually large ears, long legs and a striking color. The fur is short and very soft and it does not require special care and do not cause trouble, even during molting.

First Savannah was born on April 7, 1986 from the domestic cat and African Serval. The first generation was called F1 (50% of Serval blood ).

Most signs of a wild cat are in the direct descendants of the African Serval, and they are the most expensive. Crossing Serval with a domestic cat is considered to be a big success, and thats why Serval cat costs even less than Savannah F1. There are not many kittens in the litter from such crossing, usually its only one kitten. Male descendants to the 4th generation - cannot have kittens,they are sterile. Thats why the females are more valued. To create this breed felinologists spent a lot of time and efforts. A lot of generations had been brought in order to make Savannah cats look like we see them now. So breeding of Savannahs is troublesome  and it requires a lot of money.

Since the male hybrid kittens are sterile to the 4th generation, Savanna females are usually  crossed with other breeds. More often with such breeds as Bengals, Egyptian Mau, and other breeds similar in type.

Savannah size first of all depends on the generation and the percentage of Serval blood. The biggest of all Savannahs are males of the F1 and F2 generations, they are about 2.5 times bigger than normal domestic cat and weigh up to 14 kilos. Savannah`s height is impressive - up to 45 cm high. Savannah needs about three years to reach its maximum size.

Cats of this rare breed has a long neck and large rounded ears. Long thin legs create the illusion of a big animal (up to 60 cm high). Savannah cats are unusually graceful. Wool has a distinctive spotted color.

The descendants of an African wild cat Serval and a domestic cat inherited from their ancestors all the best. From the "grandfather" they took grace, spotted color, playful character and everything that makes Savannahs similar to the masters of the African plains. From "grandmother" they got friendliness, loyalty, gentle nature and ability to live next to other animals and ability to get along with  children. One of the main things that differs Serval from other wild cats is that Serval does not consider humans as a prey.

Despite the exotic breed, Savannah cats have a strong immune system and good health. The great thing about this breed is its character. These cats are curious and very active. Intelligent, playful, cheerful and very energetic - Savannah resembles a dog. It is easy to train  and most of all Savannah cats love to play "fetch!", to ride in cars and enjoy outdoor walks on a leash. Cats of this breed do not like cold, like their African ancestor - Serval. Savannah cats are very fond of water, and, if you will permit, Savannah will take the morning shower with you, or bathe in your tub. And their ability to jump high vertically upwards, is simply awesome. Savannahs are very sociable, trainable, and they return fully all the love and affection to their owners.

Thanks to the natural agility and curiosity Savannah kittens  will be the best friends to your children. While growing up, these cats become gentle and caring "nannys".

Male cats are the etalon of courage and independence.

Savannah cat is a wonderful alternative for people, who would like to have an exotic cat, such as the African Serval.

 

Age development and care.

The period of gestation of Serval is 66 -77 days, and the domestic cat is about 55 days. This is the reason why kittens from Serval and cat, and the first hybrid generations are often born earlier and they are  premature, so they need special care just like a baby, a suckling. Usually hybrids of F1 and F2 generations have 1-2 kittens only and Savannahs of later hybrid generations(F3 and so on) have 3-5 kittens.

Savannahs feed kittens with milk during 8-12 weeks. The first 8 weeks of life, Savannah kittens sleep a lot, almost all the time. During sleep the organism of kittens produce hormones of growth, so it's better  not to disturb and not to wake up the kittens, as it may intercept normal growth. In the following weeks, their sleep becomes shorter and not so deep. So it's better to leave kittens with their mother at first months of their life. Although Savannah males up to F4, and in most cases, to the F5 generation are usually sterile, they are usually castrated at an early age, so they will not mark the territory and will be more domesticated. Following the recommendations of TICA, males are usually castrated or sterilized upon reaching the age of 10-12 weeks in order to send the kitten at the age of 12-16 week  to its new owners.

At this age the kitten is trained to the toilet, vaccinated, eats on its own and communicates with people and other animals, so the new owner will not have any troubles with it.

Advices to new owners of Savannahs coincide in general with the advices for kittens of other breeds. However, Savannah cats are more active, so they need more toys. And it is necessary to keep some distance to avoid scratches and bites. For example, the toy of feathers can be attached to a thin stick, similar to a fishing rod. Savannahs love to jump, especially Savannahs of F1 and F2. In addition to that, Savannah kittens are very curious, so until the age of 7 months, until their teeth haven`t change yet, you should secure the electrical wires and small parts of the interior decoration. It is important to remove from the rooms to which the kitten has access any plants that are poisonous for cats!

 

Feeding.

 

When you just bought a kitten, it is not recommended to change his diet, which he had at cattery of a breeder, because he got used to it. If it is necessary, the diet should be changed slowly and gradually. It is important to feed kittens with nutritious and quality food, especially at their first years of life, as the cats grows quickly.

Here are some brands of dry food, which I recommend:

ВIOMILL (Switzerland)

Go Natural Holistic

NOV Natural Holistic

ATTENTION!

It is necessary to consider that the high concentration of corn in the dry food can cause diarrhea for Savannah. This applies to the food where corn is listed in the first lines of the ingredients!

Don`t forget that Servals are among the most successful hunters among cats. Therefore, minced chicken, with the addition of chicken offal (heart, stomach) would be the best choice for diet diversity for Savannah.

Here are some recommendations on mixture preparation: take equal proportions of chicken meat and offal (chicken stomachs, heart and liver), cut all the ingredients in a meat grinder, and freeze in portions. During feeding add to the blend: taurine, amino acids, vitamins.