Furry Hearts Blog

Bengal – Perth Rare Breeds Project

When cat lover Mike was trying to convince his self-avowed “dog person” wife Molly to consider a new feline family member the Bengal breed cat was offered up as a compromise.

Bengal cat walking

Keeping and eye on dad Mike

Curious Bazooka is wondering what that strange lady is doing on the floor haha!

Breed characteristics of the Bengal claim that they are somewhat dog like in their energy, outgoing nature and reputation for being able to be walked on a lead. So, Molly agreed and Bazooka the male Bengal entered their lives about 4 years ago.

A four image collage showing a Bengal cat in various poses

Bazooka just lazing about the house

Bengals were originally created by breeding with the Asian leopard cat and are known for their distinctive leopard markings (both spotted and marbled), though patterns and colours will vary through the breed. Bazooka has a warm brown colouring with big, very well defined leopard spots coupled with unbelievably large and luminous, vivid green eyes.

Another interesting Bengal feature that I previously wasn’t aware of is that some have a translucent type fur interspersed through their coat that sparkles in the sunlight with a glitter like effect… just in case they needed one more thing to mesmerise! This is apparently a particularly rare and desirable Bengal trait, which makes glittery Bazooka a special boy.

A four image collage showing Bengal coat pattern and green eyes

That gorgeous coat and amazing eyes

Bazooka lives with alongside a small black domestic female rescue cat Letty that he simply adores. Originally planning on getting an older cat from the shelter, when Mike and Molly went to pick one out tiny Letty crawled into Molly’s lap and made the choice for them.

Mike and Molly didn’t get Letty until Bazooka was about 2 years old and say prior to that Bazooka was quite destructive. Bazooka simply adores his little fur sister and once he had other catty companionship he settled down a lot, though Mike claims Bazooka is still a “big fan of science, with a keen interest in gravity. He conducts regular experiments by pushing breakable things off the counter to examine the effects”.

Bazooka and his favourite girl, little Letty

During the shoot Molly admitted that she didn’t really think Bazooka ended up very dog like at all which prompted some hilarious attempts to teach Bazooka some sit and lay down commands with treats. This actually worked reasonably well to the amused surprise of all present. It also revealed out a bit of his wild side, and more than a few times he decided not to wait for the hand with the food to come to him and instead chose the more efficient option of removing the treat directly from the hand.

Bengal cat chewing the finger of his owner

“I can’t wait for the fingers with the food to get to me”

The wild side coming out

Typical of a Bengal Bazooka is super active and playful and enjoys stalking both his feathered cat toys and his sister Letty. Perhaps not so typical is his dislike of water, which is usually something the Bengal breed is known to have an affinity with.

Bengal cat playing with his owner

Bazooka mid-hunt

Though not convinced that his Bengal is very typical of the breed, Mike suggests from his experience with Bazooka that if it’s a lap cat your after then a Bengal is probably not for you. That said, Bazooka is known to seek the odd warm lap during the colder months – though this is not a common occurrence and it is always on Bazooka’s terms! Bengals love and form tight bonds with their family but they are big personalities, high-energy and won’t spend their days cuddling quietly while you read a book.

Portrait of a Bengal cat with green eyes looking directly at camera

I wish to thank Mike and Molly for letting this crazy cat lady photographer in their lives for an afternoon to meet and photograph the beautiful Bazooka and Letty.

Want to find out more about Bengal Cats?

Facebook page for Bengal owners to show off photos of their pets.

Facebook page for a non-profit organisation that rehomes Bengal cats and kittens.

Information on Bengal breed physical attributes. The website is Elite Cats, the Queensland breeder that produced Bazooka.

A website about the origin of the breed as well as other general information about their appearance and behaviour.