Watch our TTouch demonstration from the Cat
Show with Elvis, a wonderful Savannah cat who, despite his size, is a timid and shy boy.
Elvis is a wonderful cat who is usually found at home with his other Savannah family -- but he "comes out"
about once a year for educational purposes, and he was a bit overwhelmed by the weekend activities. I had worked
on him several times over the weekend (he was so sweet!), and he was to be my "demo-boy" during the TTouch presentation.
As he snuggled in to me during the demo, with all those people watching, he was shaking. Typical cat, he prefers to be quietly
at home with his 'family!'
So, I used several specific TTouch techniques on Elvis to help him
relax and calm down easily. As the demo progressed, I could feel his whole body just settle in and relax. What
an experience! It was wonderful working with Elvis. Then, the weekend was over, and Elvis
left the building!Mary. Tavi & Friends/Mindful
Savannah is a hybriddomesticcatbreed. It’s a cross between the wild serval and a domestic cat. Like all cats, they should be indoor
only.They are a large breed and need a lot of exercise, and you should have
lots of room and provide them with lots of interaction and challenges.If you
do want them to “experience” the outdoors, make sure you have a solidly-built enclosure so that there is no way
for them to escape!
Bengal breeder Judee Frank crossbred
a male Serval with a domestic cat, producing the first Savannah cat in 1986.Thus
led to the establishment of a new ‘domestic’ breed based on that Serval/domestic cat cross, which led in 1996
to the accepted breed standard for Savannahs, as presented to the board of The International
Cat Association (TICA).The breed was accepted by TICA in 2001.
Savannahs are one of the larger domestic
breeds, being tall and slim built,the early generations weigh in around 20-30
lbs.(Later generations range from between
12-20 lbs.)But genetics led to random factoring so there can be significant
size variations, even within a litter.
Their coats depend on the domestic
breed used in the cross, but they usually have some form of dark spotting on a lighter coat, while some breeders prefer the
wilder-looking spotted breeds (such as the Bengal, Egyptian Mau) as the domestic out-crosses to preserve the markings.The breed standard calls for brown spotted tabby, silver spotted tabby, black and
black smoke only, however, and out-crosses accepted by TICA include: Begal, Ocicat, Egyptian Mau, Maine Coon, and several
others.Something to remember:Being a hybridized-breed, their appearance may vary much more than most cat owners
are used to.
Many compare Savannahs to dogs in terms
of their loyalty.They are known to follow their owners around the house everywhere,
can be trained to walk on a leash (which many cats can be), and to fetch.Like
most cats, Savannahs will greet you with a head-butt or an unexpected pounce.They can be social and friendly with new people and other cats and dogs, but may also run and hide, or revert to hissing
and growling at unfamiliar people and animals.Early exposure to lots of people
and pets is the key to socializing your Savannah kitten – as with any cat or dog.
They are intelligent, inquisitive,
get into everything (learning to open doors), are noted for their jumping ability (onto top of doors, high cabinets, refrigerators,
over fences…) and can jump over 8 feet from a standing position.If
you are even considering owning a Savannah, know that you will have to take special precautions to ensure their safety –
and to prevent them from getting into everything!They love water and will play
in it totally immersed – and will even play with their water bowls until empty!
Vocally, they can chirp like the wild
Servals, can meow like their domestic parent, do both, or a mixture.Their ‘hiss’
is more like that of a snake hiss and may be alarming to humans who hear it for the first time.The early generations (such as F1 or F2) may also exhibit more aggressive behaviors, but these can also
be found in later generations (F3 and lower), but may diminish as the Savannah is socialized.
Generally, the Savannah is a fairly
healthy breed, being a hybrid.However, you must find a veterinarian who knows
how to treat the Savannah.Care is advised in prescribing medications (lower
doses may be required); blood values may vary; may not respond well to anesthesia contain Ketamine; many believe modified
live vaccines should not be used, only killed virus vaccines.They usually have
no known special food requirements but many recommend a very high quality diet of no grains or by-products – including
partial or complete raw feeding of high protein. They require calcium and other supplements, especially while growing.However, the Savannah’s diet is not without controversy, so it is best to seek
the advice of a qualified veterinarian or exotic cat specialist before feeding.
Laws governing ownership of Savannah
cats and other wild/domesticated hybrid crosses, and wildlife vary by state.They
are illegal in New York State, Massachusetts, Hawaii, Georgia, and others –
and also specifically they are illegal in New York City.Check your state laws
before even thinking about adopting any hybrids.