The beautiful appearance and wonderful coats of Ocelots, Leopards and Jaguars have captivated feline enthusiasts for centuries but never before has there been a successful attempt to breed an entirely new domestic cat. Ocicats offer the beauty of wild cats yet retain the wonderfully predictable disposition of domestic cats. The exotic look of the Ocicat belies its affectionate personality and temperament, and there are NO wild genes whatsoever used in Ocicat bloodlines.
The first breeder of Ocicats was Virginia Daly of Berkley, Michigan, US, who attempted to breed an Abyssinian-pointed Siamese in 1964. The first generation of kittens appeared Abyssinian, but the result in the second generation was not only the Abyssinian-pointed Siamese, but a spotted kitten, Tonga, nicknamed an ‘ocicat’ by the breeder’s daughter.
Tonga was neutered and sold as a pet, but further breedings of his parents produced more spotted kittens, and became the basis of a separate Ocicat breeding program. Other breeders joined in and used the same recipe, Siamese to Abyssinian, and offspring to Siamese. In addition, due to an error by CFA in recording the cross that produced the Ocicat, the American Shorthair was introduced to the Ocicat giving the breed larger boning and adding silver to the 6 original colors, so now we have 12 official Ocicat coat colours. The Ocicat has an all-domestic temperament but the wild appearance.
The Ocicat Classic Breed
Increasingly over recent years Ocicats with the Classic coat pattern (Ocicat Classics) have been appearing in Ocicat litters in the UK. The Classic pattern was introduced in the early origins of the Ocicat by the American Shorthair breed, this breed further contributed body substance and the silver colour gene.
The Ocicat Classics are extremely beautiful, and it is hoped that their recognition as a separate breed alongside their spotted relatives will be a success.
Apart from the beautiful coat pattern there are no other differences from the Ocicat itself.
Ocicats are very outgoing breed’s, they are often considered to have the spirit of a dog in a cat’s body & most can easily be trained to fetch, walk on a leash and harness, come when called, speak, sit, lie down on command and a large array of other dog-related tricks.
Most are especially good at feline agility because they are very food and toy-driven, some even take readily to the water, some are known to drink from taps in sinks, take baths/showers, or a dip in the neighbours pond after the goldfish. They are very friendly & will run to greet you on your return home & announce that they’d like to be petted, they will soon realise who are cat people from your friends, they adore to play so show a child how to hold a feather stick & await the giggles. This makes them great family pets, and most get along well with animals of other species, they are lovable rogues, comedians, great for a cuddle but also they always seem to know when you need a friend to talk too, or pillow to cry on….them. Ocicat’s make excellent pets for people who like to spend a lot of time with their cat but are not suitable to be left on their own day in day out, if you work full time hours, due to being so sociable they become very lonely…..