House cats that look tigers. Domestic cats that look like leopards. Sweet and gentle cats that look like cheetahs.
Love the wildcat look but don’t want to deal with the hassle of owning a hybrid wild cat breed? You’re in luck ’cause there are a number of gorgeous cat breeds that have wildcat looks but come from domestic cat roots.
That means you truly get the best of both worlds: a cat who looks like her wild counterparts but behaves like the gentle domestic cat that she is.
Unlike with hybrid cat breeds, you’ll find that these house cats in wildcat clothes tend to be sweet, gentle and friendly. The best part? Many of these cats tend to fall on the active side so if you’re looking for a feline partner in crime for games, walks and even dips in the lake – you might just meet your match here!
Fierce-looking and large – it can weigh as much as 20 lbs – the Maine Coon looks a lot like a feral bobcat. But whereas no one really knows how it came to be, the Maine Coon is as domestic as they come – loving, affectionate, and patient. It’s even got some wildcat traits, too, with top-notch hunting skills and the willingness to explore the water and the outdoors on a leash. Read more about the Maine Coon.
The Ocicat’s exotic, wildcat looks are a tad deceptive since it doesn’t have a drop of wild DNA in its genes – the Ocicat is actually the result of an experimental breeding program that paired a seal-point Siamese with a ruddy-colored Abyssinian. As such, its nature is pure domestic feline, friendly and affectionate. But the Ocicat is not just an indoor kind of cat – it’s also adventurous and playful and can be taken out on walks…with a leash, of course. Read more about the Ocicat.
Despite its wild looks, it’s not true that the Pixie Bob originated from the accidental pairing of a wild bobcat and a domestic cat. The Pixie Bob is actually the result of an experimental breeding program that very intentionally produced a cat breed that resembled a bobcat but descended purely from domestic lines. But the Pixie Bob is more like a canine than a feline – domestic or otherwise – with its ability to be trained, taken for walks on a leash, and its high level of devotion to its humans. Read more about the Pixie Bob.
The Serengeti looks very wild and that was the intention to begin with. You see, the Serengeti is the brainchild of a conservation biologist who wanted to create wild-looking felines from domestic parents to meet the demands of cat fanciers jumping on the exotic pet bandwagon, thus protecting wild cat species from capture and domestication. The experimental breeding program aimed for the look of the Serval and was successful in producing it through breeding Bengals and Oriental Shorthairs. The result is the Serengeti, a highly active, devoted cat breed. Read more about the Serengeti.
The Sokoke is a naturally occurring breed that hails from the Arabuko-Sokoke Forest Preserve, right in the heart of Kenya’s coastal zone. They’ve been thriving in the forests for as long as the natives remember ’til they were ‘discovered’ by a horse breeder who mistook them as wildcats and were surprised by their docile personality. The Sokoke is now considered a domestic cat breed – loving, smart, and bonding closely with its humans – but it’s also one of the rarest cat breeds in the world and not easy to get your hands on. Read more about the Sokoke.