Considered one of the largest cat breeds to be domesticated, the Chausie makes its presence known. Mixed between Abyssinian and wild jungle cats (Felis Chaus), this breed has more wild physical characteristics than any other domestic breed. With slender faces, brown camouflaged fur, and large pointed ears, the Chausie looks as if it’s built to survive in the wild.
However, the wild jungle cat traits don’t just come out in their physical traits but also in their personalities. With high energy levels and the desire to run, jump, and play, these cats will keep any owner on their toes!
|Chausie Breed Overview|
|Height||14-18 inches (35.5-45.7 cm)|
|Weight||15-30 lbs (6.8-13.6 kg)|
|Colors||Brown, cream, black, and tan|
|Suitable for||Singles, families without kids|
|Temperament||An energetic, playful, and outgoing breed|
|Breed Traits Overview|
History Of The Chausie Cat Breed
The lineage of the Chausie is believed to date back to ancient Egypt as there are many similarities between the remains of mummified cats found in Egyptian tombs and the present-day Chausie. Despite the thought that the breed was maybe already a hybrid back in ancient times, it’s more likely that people were trying to domesticate purebred jungle cats.
The current domesticated mix wasn’t fully established until 1995 when it was formally recognized by The International Cat Association.
Beginning in the 1990s, breeders had a thought to mix jungle cats originating from the swamps of Southeast Asia with the current Abyssinian breed. The name Chausie was developed from the scientific name for jungle cats, Felis Chaus, and was chosen due to the wilder temperament and svelte appearance of the hybrid breed.
Later in 2013, the cat was officially rewarded championship breed status by the International Cat Association. Being considered an outstanding breed for their sociability and friendliness despite their wild roots, Chausies are a well-loved breed among cat lovers. This championship status skyrocketed the demand for Chausies as it brought more attention to the new domestic cat breed.
How Much Does The Chausie Cost?
The cost of a Chausie kitten can range between $8,000 and $10,000 (€6,700 and €8,400, £5,700 and £7,180, A$10,500 and A$13,200), making it one of the most expensive cat breeds on the market. This is because of their rarity and unique genetic makeup; however, the cost is dependent on the quality of the breeder and the location in which you are purchasing. Therefore, you may be able to find a Chausie for much cheaper, especially if you are buying as an adult cat, which can often be between $1,500 and $2,500 (€1,260 and €2,090, £1,080 and £1,795, A$1,975 and A$3,300).
If you’re having difficulties finding breeders, it could be that there aren’t many in your country. Up until now, the majority of Chausie breeders have been in the United States.
The Chausie is quickly increasing in popularity but is still decently hard to come by. As a newer breed, they have not yet reached certain regions of the world, and therefore, for someone living in Europe or Australia, it may just be that there are no breeders in your country yet.
Personality Traits Of The Chausie
The most important thing to note about the Chausie is that their personalities differ greatly from breeds that have been domesticated for longer. They retain many of the characteristics of wild cat species, making them a very outgoing breed. By committing to a Chausie, you are also committing to a decent amount of intense playtime with them.
Since they form strong bonds with their human families, it’s important that you spend sufficient periods of time playing with your Chausie to give them more human interaction. However, when they play by themselves, it’s non-negotiable to have a wide variety of structures and toys for your cat to play with.
As one of the largest cat breeds, they will very quickly destroy your furniture if they don’t have enough enrichment offered to them. You will need a cat tree made specifically for large cats, as well as several perches that they can jump onto. Any overly delicate toys will not last long in the home.
With their high level of intelligence, you will want to buy toys that require a bit of skill and focus, like a cat wheel. Offer them five or six toys then after about a week, switch those out for a new set. If you can rotate about four times before returning back to the first batch of toys, you will find that your cat is staying regularly entertained.
While it may not sound like it at this point, the Chausie also has a softer, more affectionate side to them. Properly expelling their energy, they’ll happily spend time sleeping close to you or receiving some hands-on affection.
It’s important to understand that because of their playful demeanor they should not be around children under the age of 13. Their bursts of energy aren’t delicate and when overly excited or in play mode could end up hurting a smaller child. They are extremely loving and personable cats but should be kept in a home with adults rather than young children.
This breed will do just fine being introduced into a home with other cats or dogs as long as they’re introduced at a young age. If you’re bringing a Chausie into a household that already has animals, be sure you have pets that can match the energy of the breed.
How To Take Care Of A Chausie
Caring for a Chausie can be more challenging than some other breeds of cats due to their genetic differences. As a more wild breed of cat, they require different levels of care in order to maintain optimal health.
The most important thing to consider when taking care of a Chausie is their need for a specialized diet. Cats are obligate carnivores, meaning that they eat only meat and cannot break down any plant matter or grains.
In the breeding and domestication of cats, many breeds have become more tolerant of these fillers and therefore can breakdown commercial cat foods more easily; but since the Chausie is half jungle cat, they have not yet reached a point of tolerance with these fillers.
This is because when the wild cat breed is so recent in the genetic makeup of the domesticated breed, their digestive tracts differ slightly from that of a breed that has been domesticated for a longer period of time.
By eating generic breed cat food, the health of your Chausie will not be optimized and they can suffer from obesity or intestinal issues. Not to mention, they will not be receiving the correct balance of vitamins and minerals necessary for their body type and will likely have a shortened lifespan or additional health problems.
It’s crucial that you consult with your veterinarian before deciding on a diet for your cat; however, you should be feeding them a diet made up of 100% high-quality meat products.
The Chausie is extremely low maintenance when it comes to their grooming needs. As a cat with a short coat, they only need to be brushed around once per week. This will reduce any hairballs that can build up from their personal grooming habits, and keep their fur knot-free.
It’s important to check their ears often and clean them if too much dirt is building. With larger ears and more aggressive playing, they are prone to getting too much buildup in their ears and having infections as a result.
If you get into the habit of cleaning their ears once per week when you brush them, you will be able to maintain them very well. The last thing you will want to stay very consistent with is trimming the nails of your Chausie. Since they will be running around the house and potentially jumping on your furniture, you will save many of your household items by keeping their claws short. This way when they are playing, you won’t have to worry about them ripping upholstery.
Since it can be common with larger more destructive breeds, it’s important to note that declawing your cat is incredibly painful and unethical as it deforms their paws and inhibits their natural behaviors. This is a completely unnecessary procedure as your cat’s nails can be easily maintained by trimming them at home.
One of the most helpful things you can do to help your Chausie acclimate to life as a domesticated cat is to train them early on in their lives. This is a big part of keeping them tolerant of social interactions both with humans and other animals. If you have other pets in your home, be sure to oversee all their early interactions to train them how to socialize in a friendly manner with other cats or dogs.
Training should begin when they’re kittens (or as soon as you get them) to use a scratching post rather than using furniture to maintain their nails. You can also train them to play with certain toys and to use their cat tree instead of using furniture around the house as their playground.
Since they are incredibly intelligent, they will do well with a clear set of boundaries and rules in their home.
The Chausie is amazingly strong and resilient with very few health concerns. Because of their ancestry with wild animals, they’re a very healthy breed but, the primary issue they can have is with their digestion when not eating a proper diet. If you fail to give them a diet of just meat, you will find that they will experience health issues; however, this can be solved by switching them onto a more ideal diet.
You should pay close attention to any ear infections and mouth health. And of course, always be sure your cat is up to date on their vaccinations to avoid any common feline diseases.
When it comes to climate, they are an incredibly adaptable breed allowing them to maintain their health and thrive anywhere. You will not need to worry too much about maintaining their body heat or offering them cool places as they will effectively regulate their bodies on their own.
Physical Attributes Of The Chausie
- Head: Chausies have slender rounded heads with very pronounced facial features. Their whisker pads are more defined than other domesticated breeds which is largely what gives the Chausie a more jungle cat look.
- Body: With a very athletic and slender body, the Chausie is extremely defined and thin with a deep chest. The length of their body is long but not disproportional to their head and leg size. Females range on the smaller end, being between 15 and 20 pounds (6.8 to 9 kg), while males can be between 25 and 30 pounds (11 to 13.6 kg).
- Ears: Built to hunt and avoid any predation, the ears of the Chausie are very similar to that of the jungle cat. With large ear bases that come into a rounded tip, their ears are large in size but proportional to their head.
- Eyes: Generally green or gold in color, their eyes are a rounded almond shape with a piercing gaze.
- Legs and Paws: Hind legs are slightly longer than the front legs, and all four legs are extremely muscular making for an agile and fast-moving breed. Their legs are athletic and slender.
- Tail: When compared to their lean body, the tail of the Chausie is quite short. In addition, when compared to other domestic breeds, their tails are thicker, more consistent with a cougarish appearance since the tail width does not taper off at the end.
- Coat: Chausies have short coats that are fairly coarse, but they also have a soft undercoat. This makes them prone to a small amount of shedding and therefore isn’t the best breed choice for those with fur and dander allergies.
- Color: In staying more camouflaged, the Chausie has an earthy colored coat. Ranging in tones of tan, browns, and black throughout the body, tail, and legs, and often having slightly lighter colors like cream or white on the muzzle. More officially, the International Cat Association has recognized three color patterns in the Chausie: the brown-ticked tabby, the solid black, and the grizzled tabby. In the tabby, the hair shaft is banded to create a beautiful patterning on the skin.
Conclusion On The Chausie
If you’re looking for a unique and playful cat to bring into your adult home, the Chausie may be the right choice for you! However, before bringing this breed in, be sure you think through your future as introducing children will not be ideal.
If you plan to introduce more animals into your home later on in your Chausies life, train them to socialize nicely with other animals while they are young to avoid any future issues.