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Introducing a new F2 kitten to my 12 Y.O. DSH

Carykd7kau

Reincarnated cat Moderator
Aaron. Tell your wife that the people who actually have Savannah cats in their lives (IE Us up here on Savannah Chat) will tell you that what she has heard about Savannahs being wild could not be further from the truth. MY 2 SVs are the most loving and sweet kitties I've ever had. And I have had about 15 cats in my adult life. Tell her the kids will love them and they will love the kids, as any other cat would. These cats are DOMESTIC House Cats... Just with a different genetic linage and appearance. ( a beautiful appearance, I might add...)
 

Patti

Admin
Staff member
The irony here is painful. I would expect that TICA would train its office staff to be minimally knowledgeable about the breeds it represents to prevent the staff from perpetuating negative stereotypes about cats. Sheesh.
Well there are over 50 different breeds registered with TICA, it would be pretty difficult to expect clerical staff to be knowledgable about all of them. Frankly, I don't know how the judges do it!
 

WitchyWoman

Admin
Staff member
Well there are over 50 different breeds registered with TICA, it would be pretty difficult to expect clerical staff to be knowledgable about all of them. Frankly, I don't know how the judges do it!

Simple. Anyone who has contact with the public is trained on what is improper to say or given the information in writing or told to give no information that is not fact. It's not difficult to do. Can you imagine calling a pit bull rescue and being told by the person on the phone that all bully breeds are vicious and shouldn't be kept as pets? Public relations nightmare.
 

Patti

Admin
Staff member

No, but I can certainly imagine that happens at non-breed specific rescues and shelters... I know it does with Savannahs from time to time.
 

Charley

Savannah Super Cat
SV's get a bad rap because of their wild heritage. Heck, my vet said they "known" for behavioral issues. My response is yes, they are very bad cats. They never let you alone in the bathroom, they talk a lot and a roll of paper towel has no idea what's coming should a savannah get a hold of it.

SV's are not lap cats but they can and some have moments of it but mostly they like to play and eat-A LOT! Lol! At least mine do. I have lower gen cats an f7sbt and an f5b - even at the lower gen they are nutty and off the wall. They are a barrel of fun. I never recommend them to people unless they understand what they are in for. I think they are great cats for families with children because they are so playful. They are also very smart - my house is much cleaner now because of them. They are a lot like dogs in some respects. No,one would get a dog and not walk it or play with it, same with SV's - they need to be played with and some like to walk outside.

In our house we trade pets for play. It is not a strange sight to see one or both boys parked right in front of a toy just waiting for you to play with them. Biz brings me toys even if I'm sitting on the toilet, hahah.

They are really sweet cats. Everyone I've ever seen and the those of them who are a bit anti-social like my f7 would rather hide until you leave then hiss or bite, neither boy has ever, ever done that - to each other yes to any human - no. They will also greet you at the door, cry at the top,of their lungs for you if should ever close a door on them and when they are sleepy they will plop down next to you for a cozy nap.

Servals historically have liked to live around people and are pretty easy to domesticate. They have different needs than a savannah which makes them much more difficult financially to own and they are still wild but not like am Asian leopard.

I will admit that I was a bit disappointed when we got our f7 because he wasn't a lap cat. I know of thought he would want to cuddle a little bit. He didn't. He hid and his only relationship was food and play with us. It took me time to understand him, once I did it's the best relationship I've ever had with a pet, maybe even a human, lol. Biz started out a cuddler then quickly became a hyper little cat who only plays and can't sit still long enough to be pet. I always say we have playing cats not petting cats hahaha. If you want to pet them give them food or sneak in a stroke while they hunt the mouse.

I've been overjoyed with both kitties. And I agree people who work for agencies should know what they are talking about. I've corrected my vet lots of times. SVs misbehave as much my friends tortie does. They are cats! I don't care what breed it is some are hyper and playful. They also mellow with age. I will attest that my f7 stayed in his kitten phase about 2.5 years. He's probably full grown now - he grew for a long time 9lbs when we got him at 7 months to 17 pounds today - that was 2.5 years ago. He acted like a kitten the entire time. Now that he has a buddy he's back to kitten mode. It's nice because he plays like a lunatic but is mature enough to sit with you, cuddle, he can be pet now, lol without running off to get a toy. It's a great mix honestly and fun to have a "kitten" for so long.
 

Chris Elliott

Savannah Super Cat
I'm reading this while Ziggy, my F2, comes up and is sitting in my lap--well, the front half is. He loves to sit in people's laps, but, like you said, on his time.

Ziggy can be aggressive with people, in particular Carolyn, my wife. I think someone teased him or was mean to him at some point in the past, probably a woman or girl. I know there was an au pair at his previous home that he didn't get along with--I have no idea if it went further than that, but something happened sometime. He's great with strangers and at the vet. We continue to work with him. Any cat can become aggressive when abused. He's so sweet 99.9% of the time, and we know many of his triggers. And, when he is aggressive it's mostly hissing. Occasionally swatting, usually without claws--but occasionally with. The few times he's bitten it's been a warning with no harm done. Ziggy is an exception among Savannahs and it's a learned behavior, not something in his Serval genes. We've only had him for 2.5 months and I wouldn't give him up for anything. We've made great progress and we are committed to making this work well for all of us.
 

Brigitte Cowell

Moderator
Staff member
It can be so difficult sometimes...in the case of Ziggy one REALLY wants to be able to learn from him what happened to him. It seems obvious that something did... and kudos to you for not attributing this to his "wild" heritage!
 

SV Dad

Savannah Super Cat
By the way, I think my wife emailed Brigitte and possibly Patti (within the past week or so) expressing her concern for bringing a Savannah home . Thank you for putting her mind at ease. I guess she's afraid of the "wild" stereotype, I've tried and tried to have her research as much information as she can on them to debunk it. I'm nervous that she's not going to accept him as easily as I'd like her to, due to the anxiety that is going on for her. She is onboard, but just anxious. I'm trying to tell her its just a cat! Only more rambunctious and fun!! I just wanted to thank you guys for emailing her back to reinforce the fact that there should be no more concern when it comes to safety and aggression than with our DSH kitties. Hate human fear mongering and ignorance (which has given her the anxiety)!!!! She was scared that I was putting the kids at risk in bringing home a "wild" hybrid. She actually talked to someone at TICA before being given your names (Brigitte and Patti)... and the lady told her that Savannah's above F3 or F4 can't be shown due to a fear of aggression toward their breeders (or those showing them). I'm assuming this is complete B.S.!!
Aaron, this was my position exactly, nine years ago. I agreed to a F5 so as not to have a wild cat loose in my house. I could not have been more wrong. And I added two F3 boys over the years as positions became available. (4 cat limit) The personality of this breed wins everybody over.
Have I seen an aggressive savannah? Yes. My son's. But we have turned this cat around in the last 6 months by understanding his triggers (as Chris Elliott has done with newest arrival) and now this cat is well on his way to being a happy kitty.
So, when you get your second, and you will, smile at your wife and let her pick it out.
 

Charley

Savannah Super Cat
For what it's worth and I tell this to everyone my friend has a rescue and he is extremely aggressive. I've never seen a meaner cat snd he's not " wild" he is also super loving with my friend. It's like 2 different cats.

I watch my cat from hell most of those cats are not wild cats just cats that have issues that we as people don't understand. I don't think it's fair to connect breed to issues because you can have a mean rag doll. It's just luck of the draw and then learning how to listen to your cat and help them.

I will also add it takes a long time to get know a cat just like a human. During quarantine I would have sworn Biz was a cuddler, he is not, lol! He is an insane, running around kitten. You have to respect the animals for who they are. Just the other day Biz jumped on the bed with me and took a nap, he didn't cuddle close but it was really nice. We are still learning each other. I'm still taking special "mom" time with each cat because they get jealous and just to have that one to one bond.
 

Rafiki

Site Supporter
In some ways, I am happy that the early Bengals were aggressive. I always loved the way that they looked but did not want an aggressive cat and I had seen some of the later generation ones aggressive as well. That got me to look at the Savannahs. I had been around servals and knew that people were able to successfully domesticate them and have them as pets but that it was extremely rare to do the same with the Asian Leopard Cat. That alone led me to believe that the Savannah breed overall, including the high-gens, would be sweeter on average than the Bengals. Rafiki proved my theory and I simply adore my furkid.
 
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