The Felidae or family of cats has two subfamilies, pantherinae and felinae. The pantherinae comprises of the tiger, jaguar, lion, leopard, clouded and snow leopards. The felinae are the non-pantherine cats. We have all known cats as domesticated companions, like our pet dogs, but did you know that they are only semi-domesticated? After a recent study, researchers have found out that there is only a slight difference between the genome of house cats from that of wildcats. Some pet owners are fascinated with the idea of having wild cats in their homes. One of the popular wild cats that attract pet lovers is the serval cat.
The serval cat is an African wild cat. It is medium-sized, has long legs and large ears. It is slender yet strong. Its long legs make it a tall cat. The fur pattern varies, but usually, it has black spots with a couple of stripes from the head to the neck and back. There are a few people who keep serval cats as exotic pets, but mostly, they are kept in zoos. These cats are still considered wild animals with special needs and inherited instincts that must be nurtured in a particular environment. There are states that even prohibit ownership of serval cats, while others require special licenses. Those who are considering having these cats as pets must be aware of the risks involved in keeping them at home. They may not be ideal for homes with children for they may play roughly using their claws and teeth. Here are other exotic cats. Some keep them as pets, while others choose not.
Like serval cats, bobcats are also medium sized but they are from North America. They are muscular and can be friendly when raised since their younger days. When aggressive, they can attack humans so they should be kept away from children.
Caracals are similar to serval in terms of behavior, but they are stockier. They can be as tall as 16 to 17 inches. They are called desert lynx and are found in Asia and Africa. When they play, they can be destructive. Do not expect them to initiate affection, for remember, they are still wild in nature.
The Canadian lynx is thickly furred and is found in parts if North America. They climb well and prefer to stay at high points. They easygoing and less moody, but they do not develop a rather devoted relationship with their owners.
The Siberian lynx can grow as tall as 24 inches and weigh 40 to 80 pounds. They are ideal pets because they have this dog-like personality. They love to walk on a leash and are active in nature, which means they might need more space so as not to break any valuable in your house.
The ocelots are native to South America. They have large eyes and nice markings, making them appealing as pets. They are small and a bit challenging to maintain for they have pungent odor and hardly pay attention to commands. Ocelots are now rarely used as pets.
Fishing cats love water. They are now endangered, so you might not take them as pets. They are medium-sized and found in South Asia. The fur is spotted olive gray with horizontal stripes. The face is long and the nose is flat. In the wild, they love to stay in wetland.
Geoffroy’s cats are small and native to parts of South America. They are among the smallest in the wild cat species, weighing only about 4 to 8 pounds when grown. They can adapt to extreme weather conditions and are used to make very rare hybrid, the safari cat.
Jungle cats are the largest cat species that are native to Asia. They are also used to make hybrid cats. They can live as long as 12 to 20 years and are nervous cats that are rarely kept as pets. These cats prefer privacy, like a quiet household or a big outdoor enclosure when captured.
Asian Leopard Cat
These cats are elusive and shy, for they are nocturnal. They are best kept in large enclosures but they can be tamed to interact with owners. Asian leopard cats are responsible for the existence of Bengal cats. Some of their species are endangered so it might be difficult to obtain them as pets.
African Golden Cat
The African golden cat is a sturdy, powerful cat that can be as big as two domestic cats. They have short legs, a stout and big paws. They are forest-dependent and are rarely used as pets. It was only in 2002 that this cat breed was photographed, but it has been known for already 200 years.
Cats are popular human companions, but not all cat breeds. These wild cats are not recommended to be adopted as pets, simply because they have special needs. It may be expensive and difficult to care for them because they require special enclosures, diets and health care.