Photograph by Shandris. License: Public Domain.
The Serengeti is a hybrid domestic cat breed, a crossing between a Bengal and an Oriental shorthaired. The cats are small, shorthaired, thick coated with medium-short, thick tails and extremely long legs. Their heads are longer than they are wide with long, thick necks. Serengeti cats have very large ears, equal to the length of the head; these are rounded at the tips. Their eyes are very large and usually come in gold and yellow. The overall appearance is that of a long and lean cat. Males can weigh 10-15 pounds and females 8-12 pounds.
Serengeti cats usually come in tabby, ebony silver, ebony smoke and solid black. The majority have distinct brown spots.
The breed has a friendly disposition and when introduced properly in a household will get along with other pets. Serengeti cats are playful throughout their lives; they love chasing moving objects, climbing, playing hide and seek. They are active and vocal and will play non stop for hours.
Serengeti cats are well suited to indoor living, as long as there are a lot of toys to keep them occupied. They can also live outdoors, however care must be taken that the area is escape-proof.
They are generally low maintenance cats; their coats require grooming only once a week and they can thrive on commercially available cat food. The Serengeti is generally a hardy breed, with few hereditary or genetic issues.
The Serengeti breed was created by Karen Sausman in California in 1994. Her goal was to create a breed that looked like a Serval, without having wild cat blood. To achieve that she crossed a Bengal with an Oriental shorthaired. As of 2002 the breed was accepted by TICA.