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My Nonstandard Savannah

Bengal, Savannah, and Chausie, all Hybrids of domestic cats with exotic/wild cat species

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My Nonstandard Savannah

Postby cat person » Fri Nov 19, 2010 11:07 am

Hi All,

Well as some of you know I have always wanted an exotic cat. I have worked with bobcats and lynx, and met a few servals. But I have NEVER owned my own exotic pet.

So I decided I was going to do the next best thing. I got an F3 Savannah who is about 4 months old and is sweet as pied and HYPER and acts like no cat I have ever seen.

Now comes about 9 million questions. The breeder has been so helpful and patient over the past 48 hours I can not thank them enough. But I want to ask some people who own the these animals as pets.

Okay first question, is this: Is it normal for an F3 Savannah to run and jump and act like a Jack Russel dog or a Irish Setter? I mean the cat I have wants to be touched and held and played with CONSTANTLY. Is that normal?

Also he does he use the litter box so far. But I am so worried he will have an accident or spray. The breeder swears that it is not likely. Is that really true? I know any cat can spray but I figure a hybrid it is more likely to happen.

The breeder told me to keep him separate for the next two weeks. So he is in my spare bedroom. He runs around the furniture like a nut case. When I walk in he puffs up his tail and wants to be held. He climbs on my shoulder and grabs my hair and purrs in my ear and rubs his face all over me. Lastly he likes to bite my fingers like I am a bottle. I redirect him with a soft toy. Or throw something for him to chase. But my question is will he eventually want to stop nibbling on my hand?

Lastly I know these questions must sound dumb since I am a cat person. But he is nothing like a domestic cat. He seems more like a dog that can climb. Speaking of which he is kind of like a dog cause he is clumsy. Is the clumsy part normal or will that end?

Here are two photo's: He is very hard to photo graph as he will not stand still EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Image

Image

Thank you all for the help.
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Re: My Nonstandard F3 Savannah

Postby Lasergrl » Fri Nov 19, 2010 12:41 pm

Ahahahhaha!!!!

YES! This is all very "normal" savannah behavior. It is hard to express how very different they are then normal cats. I have already descided that a "regular" cat will never do for me again. Ive been spoiled by savannahs. They never outgrow the kitten stage. I mean, they are always active, and, they never lose that want for attention and play. Alot of times kittens are so cute and cuddley and playfull, then, they grow up and are very aloof. This is not a savannah.
BTW a two of my four savannahs never stopped wanting to chew my fingers. The F-1 is gross with it and salivates all over when doing it and it really hurts. She doesnt mean it though, just too happy.
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Re: My Nonstandard F3 Savannah

Postby TamanduaGirl » Fri Nov 19, 2010 4:01 pm

All of that describes Jake too. I'm quite convinced he's a low content Savannah that escapade a traveler. Along with those things you guys describe he used to dig and play in the water when young but now he just likes to tip over my drinks. And he chirps at birds though he used to chirp for his toys too. I also saw him jump up onto a 1 inch wide frame yesterday that is 7 feet of the ground like it was nothing. He's 10-11 pounds.

Jake is a year old and still chews on you when playing but he tries not to bite to hard. We got him neutered at 8 months because I was worried about a tom marking in general and he's never had a problem. Of course I have no real proof he's a Savannah cat but if he's pure domestic he's a freak, lol.

My first hybrid experience was a Bengal similar in markings, was orange spot with some white. He was at a store, full grown at not for sale. He was just laying there so I pet him then he was all over me.
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Re: My Nonstandard F3 Savannah

Postby cat person » Sat Nov 20, 2010 12:00 am

Hi Lasergirl,

That is normal Savannah behavior :roll: icon_biggin.gif ? To say they are playful and interactive is like saying a ice is cold or the sun is hot :lol: .

How are your Savannah's with the litter box? I know yours are breeders but I still want to ask. So far he seems to be doing well. But he is only 4 months old and been here 48 hours.

I am not the type of person to just fall in love with an animal. But I really do love him. He is so sweet and interactive. He even put his front paws around me neck like he hugs me when he see's me in the morning (I need to keep him separate from the rest of the cats for two weeks). Does that separation time frame sound good to you?

Tonight I also noticed that he can jump really high. I will try and post photo's of him jumping soon. I also noticed tonight when he is playing he wiggles the tip of his tail really fast almost like a raddled snake. Is that normal? Also when he gets excited he arches the hair on his back and puffs up his tail. But he is purring at the same time, is that part of the serval heritage? Lastly question for the night is he does not like to be alone, is that a normal Savannah behavior?

Are you upset I did not buy a kitten from you? I hope not. You know I love the nonstandard ones. He was just so handsome and reasonable priced. I just could not resist him. If you ever get a nonstandard F2 or F3 male and I can afford him I would LOVE to buy him. I do think he would like one of his own kind. What do you think about maybe adding another one later on?

Do you think he is an attractive Savannah? Minus the fact he is red. I know that is not good breeding but O well I love him. I will post more photo's tomorrow. I am too tired.

Hi TamandueGirl,

I do not think my boy is high percentage. He is only 12% serval. Your Jake so far sounds like my little red male. Has Jake calmed down a lot with age? Is Jake good with the litter box? Do you let him outside? I do not think I can let my boy out. I love him too much and he seems to have too much ADD or ADHD.

I would also love to see Jake's photo's to see if he looks like my red boy. He needs a name icon-sad . I have yet to name him. Anyone want to help me name a very loving and hyperactive cat?
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Re: My Nonstandard F3 Savannah

Postby TamanduaGirl » Sat Nov 20, 2010 1:29 am

cat person wrote:I do not think my boy is high percentage. He is only 12% serval. Your Jake so far sounds like my little red male. Has Jake calmed down a lot with age? Is Jake good with the litter box? Do you let him outside? I do not think I can let my boy out. I love him too much and he seems to have too much ADD or ADHD.

I would also love to see Jake's photo's to see if he looks like my red boy. He needs a name icon-sad . I have yet to name him. Anyone want to help me name a very loving and hyperactive cat?


Jake is the black cat the neighbors had stuck in their tree last year that wound up ours. No clues to where he came from. Some do breed black Savannah. I think he fell out of the tree as he had air under his skin, freaky sounded and felt like he had cellophane under his skin. So you've seen photos of him but I've not gotten one to really show him off. Tonight he was posed in front of the TV and the way he looked was just stunning. I think if I had managed to get that shot there would have been little question that he's no an ordinary cat.

He's officially my dad's cat since he made the decision to keep him and he's let outside. He's trained to come when my dad taps out a special rhythm. It kind of sucks though because he catches everything. He caught at least 10 humming birds this year and brought in a couple bats and let them go, not fun. He was scared to go outside at first but started coming out to be with this summer and now he likes it.

He's calmed down some but a lot of that is that he gets to go outside. When the whether is bad then he plays more inside. He doesn't jump for his toys as much as he used to but loves running after them. He used to leap repeatedly after his toys till he fell down panting, lol, he worried me some doing that. He still has hyper active moments where he's bouncing off the walls.

Oh on being clumsy. He is better but he used to be much worse. He would be running around and literally crash head on into walls. It's amazing her survived his youth.

He's just fine with the box. Funnily Kat did spray one in a crate I had kept a stray in over night after it was taken away. She's spayed and everything. She also took a chunk out of a stray's head that followed me into the house once. So it's nice she accepted Jake but that is likely because he was a kitten.

He also hates being left alone but he has gotten batter about that with age. He's usually right there with the dogs to welcome us home.

I think I read the hair thing is common. Jake doesn't do that one though.

Here's Jake jumping but he was still kitten then
Image
Circus cat by TamanduaGirl, on Flickr
Image

Three months old(when we first got him)
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I wanna go where she went by TamanduaGirl, on Flickr
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Sleeping soundly by TamanduaGirl, on Flickr

And one I took of him recently trying to show his long legs but it doesn't do him justice since he is curled up. Just have to get a photo of him posed nicely but he's rarely still if not sleeping, sitting or snuggled with someone.
Image
Jake showing off his long legs by TamanduaGirl, on Flickr
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Re: My Nonstandard F3 Savannah

Postby Lasergrl » Sat Nov 20, 2010 6:22 pm

F-3 is consider higher percent. F-4 is considered lower. Im not mad, my cats arent cooperating in the breeding department. Imstarting to wonder if there is a virus that is making them sterile. I havent had kittens here in over a year. The male is with them all the time so I dont know. My F-1 is getting old, 6 years. Her breeding time is dwindling away. Grrr.
My breeders are very terrible with the box. Every one that I have sold to that spayed and neutered has never had a problem. The bottle brush tail is a serval trait for sure.
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Re: My Nonstandard F3 Savannah

Postby cat person » Sat Nov 20, 2010 10:42 pm

Image

I am trying to show those " wonderful hooded eyes". I have no idea what they are :roll: maybe someone could tell me what they are please.

Image

That is him sleeping half on my head and half on the chair. Maybe that is a better face shot?


Hi TamanduaGirl,

Well I have only had my boy about 72 hours. But he sure seems like your Jake. I am glad to see your Jake was not hurt during his what I will call "spastic period". I am not sure if I can let my boy out. But I am sure it helps bleed off the energy. I am glad your dad adopted him. Thank you for all those photo's. My boy seems to jump like Jake used to. He also seems to be acting like your Jake did, well from your description. Plus Jake's hind legs look like my boys back legs. Muscle and bone wise I mean. If you want I will try and take a better picture of his back legs if you wish.

Lastly breeders breed for melanistic or black Savannah's. Not RED :roll: .


Hi Lasergrl,

Thank you for the information. My boy was neutered at around 12 weeks old. I really hope he never sprays, since I am already in love with him. I do not ever want to part with him. I did not know F3 was considered higher percentage. What is an F2 like to live with as a pet?

I am sorry that your cats are not breeding. What makes you suspect it is a virus? How do you know the male is not having his own "troubles"? Lastly you would keep your F1 girl if you retire her right?
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Re: My Nonstandard F3 Savannah

Postby TamanduaGirl » Sat Nov 20, 2010 11:44 pm

Jake used to try to sleep on heads too but he got big for that quick.

Here he's almost on my dad's head. He wouldn't let Jake actually on his head but Jake wanted to.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/tamanduagirl/4232417920

Here's one of his kitten legs when we first got him. He still had litter stuck to his feet from somewhere.
Image
Posing in a sun spot by TamanduaGirl, on Flickr

I do know a good breeder that chooses to breed nonstandard Bengals or Savannahs on purpose, don't remember which right now, okay I don't know her that well but she's a good breeder, my brain is a bit slow today. She likes to breed them with white marks then the colored portion has the spots. I know for TICA standards that's a no no though. The white mark or red makes them look more domestic and people want wild looking cats. The first Bengal I met was white and red.
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Re: My Nonstandard F3 Savannah

Postby cat person » Sun Nov 21, 2010 11:13 pm

Hi TamanduaGirl and Lasergrl,

That picture of your dad and Jake remind me of my boy and me. He loves to be under my neck and such. He acts like he wants to hug me and puts his paws and front legs around my neck as well. Its so cute/sweet.

But the most amazing thing is he has been around my neck/shoulders and just walk around the house with me. I think that is so cool, did Jake do or want to do that when he was younger? I will try and post photo's tomorrow to show what I mean.

If you could think of the breeder I would love to know, my brain is always slow so no worries :roll: .

Also Lasergrl will he most likely always want to sit/lay down on my shoulders like that? I think it is cool. So I hope he wants to his whole life, well I think I want him to :lol: .

Lastly he seems to eat a real lot compared to a "normal" cat/kitten. Is that just cause he is a growing kitten or is that how Savannah's are normally?
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Re: My Nonstandard F3 Savannah

Postby TamanduaGirl » Sun Nov 21, 2010 11:50 pm

Yeah he used to jump right up on your shoulders all the time. He even did it to the vet when we had him in. Not so much now but a lot of that is likely because people mostly don't like it. He's smart enough to get that. I'll pick him up and toss him over my shoulder and walk around with him and he doesn't care or hold him in my arms belly up and walk around and he's cool with it. Kat would shred me if I tried that.

The breeder's on another group I'm on so I should be able to come up with something eventually though she hasn't posted recently.

On being smart he likes puzzles. He'll put his toys in things just to figure out how to get them out or likes it when we put his toys in things. Today he was challenging himself by figuring out how to get his toy out of a bag without having to go into the bag even though that was the easiest way to get the toy. Then he'd be done till I put the toy back in for him so he could try it again.

My parents feed the cats but Jake does join us for meals and want to try what we are eating and sit there and wait for bites if it's something good like chicken.
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Re: My Nonstandard F3 Savannah

Postby Ash » Mon Nov 22, 2010 12:17 am

Wow... Savannah cats seem like amazing creatures. I always preferred servals, but knowing that they spray kind of turned me off. Savannahs seem like a perfect blend!
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Re: My Nonstandard F3 Savannah

Postby TamanduaGirl » Mon Nov 22, 2010 5:17 pm

Just replaced Jake's favorite old faded streamer toy with a new one. Boy he'll do jumps and back flips for that.
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Re: My Nonstandard F3 Savannah

Postby cat person » Mon Nov 22, 2010 9:56 pm

Hi Ash,

Trust me he is like NO other cat I have ever met. I have worked with MANY domestic cats. He seems like a cross between a monkey (climbing) and a dog (for energy and being clumsy). He is truly almost as loving as a baby or primate. So far he has been perfect with the litter box.

I would say if you ever want to own a serval first get an F2 or F3 Savannah it sure is an eye opening experience. In a good way. Well for me so far :lol: .

Image
Here is a photo of him and I with him on my shoulder. This is how he and I have been walking around lately.



Hi TamanduaGirl,

What type of toys does Jake like or liked when he was young? Can you post a link or photo of his present favorite toy?



Hi Lasergrl,

What are good Savannah toys?
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Re: My Nonstandard F3 Savannah

Postby TamanduaGirl » Mon Nov 22, 2010 10:25 pm

It's partly visible in his jumping photo. Here's a little better look at it.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/tamanduagirl/4493904975/
That one looks to have already lost the feathers but it has a few feathers, a couple rattles, some half lenght fuzzy wavy things to grab then the nice long streamers. All the color on the old streamers had faded to just silver and he wasn't much interested any more but I got the new one out and he went nuts. The long streamers make noise when I swish it fast too. Other toys pale in comparison.

He likes a rattle ball I just gave him too. I think he likes the noise. He most likes playing with it in his paper bag.

He plays with his big rabbit fur mouse sometimes too.

He liked the feather toy wands when young too but once he got the streamer one he didn't care for the others much.

Oh and he does like chasing a laser but we don't have any batteries any more. He'd chase it but lose interest after awhile due to not being able to catch it. Good for getting some running in though.
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Re: My Nonstandard F3 Savannah

Postby Ali_1010 » Mon Nov 22, 2010 10:28 pm

I know nothing about exotic cats but your kitty is super duper cute!! icon_biggin.gif

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