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The color of Ocicats.


About the Cheetoh

What Cheetohs Are

Other than a copyright infringement, the Cheetoh is supposed to be a unique, new breed blending Ocicat and Bengal. Unfortunately, it's not unique, new, or a breed. When the economy began to decline, a high-volume kitten breeder decided she wasn't getting enough money for her poor quality Bengal and Ocicat kittens. So she bred them together and called her results the "Cheetoh". She then enlisted other breeders of poor quality kittens. But, the Cheetoh is just a mutt. It is no different genetically than a Bengal, albeit an unregistered one, because the Ocicat was used initially to develop the Bengal.

Not a Domestic Cat

The Bengal does contain wild blood from the Asian Leopard Cat. Additional breeding to the Ocicat does no more to minimize the behavior and temperament issues from the wild cat than the careful breeding that is done by reputable Bengal breeders. A Bengal from a reputable breeder is much more beautiful than any Cheetoh (and probably less expensive!), and is the same hybrid cross! See Trendar Bengals if you'd like to see examples of Bengals - they can be beautiful!

Not a Larger Cat

One of the claims for the Cheetoh is that it is larger than both parent breeds. It shows an remarkable ignorance of genetics for the breeders to think it will be sustainable. All hybrid (crossing of two different breeds) animals tend to be larger than the parent breeds. However, it's not something that will be maintained in the "breed". It is only a characteristic of the foundation cross.

Not a Breed

It's unlikely the "Cheetoh" will become a recognized breed bred by reputable breeders. When recently proposed as a breed to a larger, more ethical registry, even acceptance into the process of recognition was denied. It will be difficult to establish any type of genetic distinction between this "breed" and the Bengal, other than the Bengal is much more beautiful and a better cat for the price. However, it certainly hasn't stopped its creator and associates from asking 2 to 3 times the price of an Ocicat or a Bengal for their "Cheetoh" kittens.

As P. T. Barnum said, there's one born every minute!

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January 2, 2017


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