7 Hybrid Cats Breeds

Bengal cat on back.
Bengal cats are popular hybrid cats.


Hybrid cat breeds are created when a domestic cat is bred with an undomesticated or wild cat breed. This breeding may be done in an attempt to get more wild patterns, colors, and other physical features or to combine favorite personality traits and other attributes of domestic and wild cats. Wild-looking stripes and spots, large eyes, and more can be characteristic of a hybrid cat breed so these unique features have set them apart from their domestic counterparts.

Tips

While hybrid-cats often look like domestic cats, many early generations can have very wild personality traits that may make them more of a challenge to care for when compared to domestic house cats.

Breed Characteristics

Some hybrid cat breeds are more mischevious and active than others but they all can have very wild instincts. First, second, and sometimes even third generations of hybrid cats will have more of these wild traits than later generations so pet owners that are interested in getting a hybrid cat breed should be aware of this. More mental and physical enrichment will be required for these earlier generations.

Here are seven hybrid cat breeds that have grown in popularity over the years.

  • 01 of 07

    Bengal Cat

    Bengal cat sitting on weathered deck

    itsabreeze photography / Getty Images

    Bengal cats, not to be confused with Bengal tigers, are a hybrid cat breed that has combined the Asian leopard cat with various domestic cats, especially the Egyptian mau. These cats are known for their wild-looking spots and marbling but they also often like water and have very dog-like personalities. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, retinal atrophy, and pyruvate kinase deficiency are three diseases that Bengal cats may be predisposed to developing.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 8-10 inches

    Weight: 8-15 lbs.

    Coat and Color: Short hair, wide variety of colors with spots, rosettes, or marbling

    Life Expectancy: 9-15 years

  • 02 of 07

    Savannah Cat

    Savannah cat sitting against a gray background

     Volchanskiy / Getty Images

    Taller than the Bengal cat, Savannah cats are also spotted hybrid cats that are popular for their exotic markings. They are a cross between a serval and a domestic cat and is the largest type of recognized and registered pet cat breed. Some states and cities have laws against owning Savannah cats, especially earlier generations of them, but most recognize them as domesticated pets.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 14-17 inches

    Weight: 7.5 - 24 lbs.

    Coat and Color: Short hair, brown, silver, or black colors with spots

    Life Expectancy: 12-20 years

  • 03 of 07

    Chausie

    Chausie cat laying down.
    Chausie cats are medium to large hybrid cats.

    Getty Images/tania_wild

    Chausies are a cross between jungle cats and domestic cats. They are playful cats that enjoy the company of other cats, dogs, and people and are very social. Chausies are built for running and jumping and also often resemble Abyssinian cats but like some other hybrids, they can be prone to developing intestinal issues.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 14-18 inches

    Weight: 8-16 lbs.

    Coat and Color: Short hair, solid black, black grizzled tabby, and black/brown ticked tabby

    Life Expectancy: 12-14 years

  • 04 of 07

    Serengeti

    Serengeti cat
    KrissiLundgren / Getty Images

    Unlike other hybrids, the Serengeti is a cross between two domesticated cat breeds - the Bengal cat and Oriental shorthair. They have slimmer features than their Bengal cousins but maintain the exotic, spotted coat and the ultimate goal of this breed is to look like a Savannah cat without using wild cats to breed. They are very active and agile and maintain the vocal attributes of their Oriental shorthair ancestors.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 8-10 inches

    Weight: 8-15 lbs.

    Coat and Color: Short hair, variety of colors with spots

    Life Expectancy: 8-12 years

    Continue to 5 of 7 below.
  • 05 of 07

    Cheetoh

    Cheetoh cat walking in grass

     Chris Rue / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0

    If you like spots then you will love cheetoh cats. This newer hybrid cat breed was developed from crossing the Bengal cat with an ocicat in an attempt to create a gentle but wild-looking breed. This hybrid cat is a large-bodied cat but is said to get along well with other pets as well as people. The cheetoh is not as common as the Bengal or Savannah but is growing in popularity due to its striking markings.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 12-18 inches

    Weight: 12-25 lbs.

    Coat and Color: Short hair, multiple colors with spots.

    Life Expectancy: 10-15 years

  • 06 of 07

    Toyger

    Toyger cat against a yellow background

    Erich Schmidt / Getty Images

    If you're after stripes without having a pet tiger than a toyger may be what you're looking for. Developed by crossing a Bengal cat with a domestic tabby cat, this breed is friendly and highly trainable. Like many other purebred cats, toygers can be prone to developing heart disease but are very playful and make great house cats even though they are not as common as Bengals.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 9-13 inches

    Weight: 7-15 lbs.

    Coat and Color: Short hair, brown to orange with black stripes

    Life Expectancy: 10-15 years

  • 07 of 07

    Pixie-Bob

    Pixie-bob
    Pixie-bob cats have some bobcat features like tufted or tipped ears and a shorter, bobbed tail.

    Getty Images/Nynke van Holten

    Generally agreed to be a cross between a bobcat and a domestic cat, pixie-bobs are thought to be the only pet hybrid cat that may have naturally occurred. Like bobcats, pixie-bobs have a bobbed or shorter tail and ear tufts. They make chirping noises and usually have polydactyl toes.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 9-13 inches

    Weight: 8-17 lbs.

    Coat and Color: Often short-haired but can have long hair, brown, red, or rust color with spotting

    Life Expectancy: 13-15 years

Many hybrid cat breeds are recognized as domesticated cats but like other purebred cats, each breed is known for its own unique features. Researching any breed of cat before committing to caring for it is important for any cat owner, regardles of whether or not you are considering a hybrid.