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Bengal, Savannah mixes

mickey

Savannah Super Cat
#1
I just did post this in reply to another post, but it is really the reason I joined this site. To learn more about the Savannahs and to help clear up the confusion as to what some of these cats are that I keep stummbling cross.
(This is getting quite confusing on here. It seems Bengal's were used in the development of the breed, but yet I hear things like what you just posted. Its almost like (from what I see) if it looks like a Bengal its a Bengal, if it looks like a savannah, it's a savannah.
Now I know I'm getting a little silly how I worded this, but really, the idea of the Savannah is to have a domestic that looks like a serval, but yet I see Savannah after Savannah, that I cannot see how they differ much from a Bengal. Not this kitten, but elsewhere)
ok, the latter paragraph was the post.
I posted a pic awhile bk of a supposed F5 Savannah to get opinions on, first guy said something like "killer" I replied with question mark, then another person replied "looked like bengal". Which is the response I would have expected.
But still I see ad after ad on the web of supposed Savannahs ppl are claiming came from original foundation breeders. That look either like my registered female F5 Bengal or my older, who knows what exactly, 20 pound plus male Bengal guard cat. I will post a pic of him for laughs and giggles.
A couple also of Kia Sarobie and Pickels,
 

Attachments

John Popp

Site Supporter
#2
There is definitely confusion abound, and what had brought us to the breed had more to deal with character traits than physical appearance. Not that our boy Chongo isn't a handsome fellow, just that when the breeder's daughter claimed that one likes to play a lot, we were sold.

I did have a conversation with the breeder on this topic, and with the breed standards came a lot of what a savannah was supposed to be. Some breeders were very involved in the process, and others were more concerned with pushing the boundaries of where they could take crossbred servals. I'm sure the buying public plays a role as well, as any long term breeder is likely to know which kittens command the most dollars and I'm sure that doesn't always follow suit with breed standards.

The breed standard doesn't permit outcrosses, although it's pretty clear that many breeders have introduced outcrosses into their lineage. Beautiful cats and kittens, but certainly wouldn't stack up against the breed standards. I also believe this is why we see so many breeders who have begun to advertise the percentage of serval. The kittens they are producing aren't in step with the breed standards, but yet they have very high serval percentages despite whatever outcrossing has taken place.

To your point, and by the book they probably aren't "savannahs", but what they are is very beautiful cats and kittens produced by breeders not content with the very narrow box of what the breed should be.
 

mickey

Savannah Super Cat
#3
There is definitely confusion abound, and what had brought us to the breed had more to deal with character traits than physical appearance. Not that our boy Chongo isn't a handsome fellow, just that when the breeder's daughter claimed that one likes to play a lot, we were sold.

I did have a conversation with the breeder on this topic, and with the breed standards came a lot of what a savannah was supposed to be. Some breeders were very involved in the process, and others were more concerned with pushing the boundaries of where they could take crossbred servals. I'm sure the buying public plays a role as well, as any long term breeder is likely to know which kittens command the most dollars and I'm sure that doesn't always follow suit with breed standards.

The breed standard doesn't permit outcrosses, although it's pretty clear that many breeders have introduced outcrosses into their lineage. Beautiful cats and kittens, but certainly wouldn't stack up against the breed standards. I also believe this is why we see so many breeders who have begun to advertise the percentage of serval. The kittens they are producing aren't in step with the breed standards, but yet they have very high serval percentages despite whatever outcrossing has taken place.

To your point, and by the book they probably aren't "savannahs", but what they are is very beautiful cats and kittens produced by breeders not content with the very narrow box of what the breed should be.
wow, good answer. Some are very beautiful lke you say. Others, I'm kinda saying this as a joke, seem like they are getting rid of their "cull". Like my Marble Bengal as an example, registered STB, but lot of flaws, very domestic shaped face for example.
 

mickey

Savannah Super Cat
#4
There is definitely confusion abound, and what had brought us to the breed had more to deal with character traits than physical appearance. Not that our boy Chongo isn't a handsome fellow, just that when the breeder's daughter claimed that one likes to play a lot, we were sold.

I did have a conversation with the breeder on this topic, and with the breed standards came a lot of what a savannah was supposed to be. Some breeders were very involved in the process, and others were more concerned with pushing the boundaries of where they could take crossbred servals. I'm sure the buying public plays a role as well, as any long term breeder is likely to know which kittens command the most dollars and I'm sure that doesn't always follow suit with breed standards.

The breed standard doesn't permit outcrosses, although it's pretty clear that many breeders have introduced outcrosses into their lineage. Beautiful cats and kittens, but certainly wouldn't stack up against the breed standards. I also believe this is why we see so many breeders who have begun to advertise the percentage of serval. The kittens they are producing aren't in step with the breed standards, but yet they have very high serval percentages despite whatever outcrossing has taken place.

To your point, and by the book they probably aren't "savannahs", but what they are is very beautiful cats and kittens produced by breeders not content with the very narrow box of what the breed should be.
That brings up another question, I was thinking by the time the were STB, the percentage of serval was pretty low, like 3 percent or so. Not true? Although I figured the F5 should be 12.5, but someone told me not so, idk
 

mickey

Savannah Super Cat
#5
I guess the real question would be, at what point is it savannah to savannah with no out crossing, seems percents would vary
 

Patti

Admin
Staff member
#6
Okay, to try to clear up some of the confusion... when Savannahs were in their infancy it was primarily Bengal breeders who decided to work on this new breed - a natural progression since they were already familiar working with hybrids. Obviously because of this Bengals were used heavily in the early years of the breed.

Up until May of 2012 outcrosses were allowed, however Bengals were not (they were requested but TICA turned the request down because they did not want a breed with more than one exotic species in its lineage). Outcrosses were not only permissible, they were essential because male Savannahs are sterile until about the 5th generation removed from the Serval - so if the breed was to survive and flourish we had to use non-Savannah males. It's only been in the past five years or so that we've had readily available fertile Savannahs.

When using an outcross of any breed (not just Bengal) with a Savannah the breeder has the option of registering the offspring as either breed - so if using a Bengal stud the kittens can be registered as Savannahs or Bengals, if using an Egyptian Mau (until May a permissible outcross) the kittens can be registered as Egyptian Maus or Savannahs.

As for advertising percentages, in my experience there is much less of that these days, especially with the evolution of SBTs now being produced, since percentages now stay rather static. However, regardless of the TWiG (theoretical Wild Gene) you can find Savannahs with 3% TWiG look as good or better as those with twice the percentage... and each kitten in a litter will have different type - some better than others. However, SBT does not necessarily equate low TWiG - I currently have a litter of F5 SBT kittens who both parents are F4C and their TWiG is over 11% Serval. I would consider one potentially show-worthy, two potentially breeder quality, and the other two pet quality... just the way the chips (or genes) fall....