PG 68 FANCY FE­LINE

Pets (Singapore) - - Contents -

Oci­cat

The Oci­cat may sport a Chee­tah-es­que coat, but this sweet kitty is a lovely, do­mes­ti­cated fe­line that en­joys the com­pany of hu­mans.

BY CHRISTIANN PRIYANKA

con­trary to its ap­pear­ance, Oci­cats aren’t as wild as they look. Sur­pris­ingly do­mes­tic, this cat breaks the stereo­types as­so­ci­ated with most fe­lines—it en­joys swim­ming and go­ing for walks! The Oci­cat was ac­ci­den­tally bred in1964 by Vir­ginia Daly who in­tended to mate her Abyssinian with her Si­amese cat to cre­ate an Aby­point Si­amese. The re­sult was a kit­ten that looked a lot like the small South Amer­i­can wild fe­lid, the Ocelot. Tonga, the first Oci­cat, was even­tu­ally neutered and sold as a pet.

Though most Oci­cats are spot­ted, they also come in var­i­ous pat­terns such as ticked, clas­sic tabby, solid, and pointed. These cats also have an agouti coat, which means that each strand of hair is colour­ful with the ex­cep­tion of the tail.

Oci­cats look wild in ap­pear­ance, but pos­sess a dog’s per­son­al­ity. Some of their favourite ac­tiv­i­ties in­clude re­triev­ing toys and walk­ing on a leash, which are very ca­nine-like traits. Ad­di­tion­ally, Oci­cats are deeply loyal to their own­ers and ex­tremely friendly. They love to fol­low their pawrents around and don’t mind be­ing car­ried. Should there be a guest in its owner’s home, this kitty will gladly walk up to ask for pets and cud­dles!

In­tel­li­gent and ac­tive, Oci­cats should have puzzle toys to keep their minds oc­cu­pied. These fe­lines are so in­tel­li­gent that they are per­fectly ca­pa­ble of open­ing doors and un­do­ing latches. There­fore, Oci­cat paw-rents have to take extra mea­sures to pre­vent their furkids from en­ter­ing rooms or ar­eas they're not al­lowed in. Oci­cats are also very mus­cu­lar, so they should be kept ac­tive with walks and games that will help main­tain their mus­cle mass.

Since Oci­cats are highly so­cia­ble an­i­mals, it would be a good idea to get two of them to­gether.

These kit­ties crave at­ten­tion and com­mu­ni­ca­tion, and so would re­quire a com­pan­ion. As nat­u­ral lead­ers, they may even be­come lead­ers of the pack, with even dogs fol­low­ing their lead.

This fe­line breed is gen­er­ally healthy, but has

the po­ten­tial to de­velop phys­i­cal prob­lems that stem mostly from its par­ent breeds—Abyssinian and Si­amese. Some Oci­cats have been known to suf­fer from pro­gres­sive reti­nal at­ro­phy, which leads to blind­ness. Oci­cats can also suf­fer from hy­per­trophic car­diomy­opa­thy, which is a com­mon heart dis­ease in cats. Dis­eases they may in­herit from their par­ent breeds in­clude re­nal or liver amy­loi­do­sis and early pe­ri­odon­tal dis­ease. There­fore, it is im­por­tant to brush this kitty's teeth fre­quently (at least once a week). Since this breed is mus­cu­lar, it's not prone to obe­sity.

The Oci­cat has a short and smooth coat, so groom­ing is rel­a­tively fuss-free. It usu­ally needs to be brushed just once weekly. Giv­ing baths to this cat shouldn’t be a prob­lem ei­ther be­cause un­like most cats, this kitty loves water! Oci­cats are great pets for first-time own­ers and for fam­i­lies with chil­dren. As this fe­line is very lov­ing and not at all fe­ro­cious, it'll get along with any­one in the fam­ily. The breed also adapts well to dif­fer­ent en­vi­ron­ments, mak­ing it a great furkid for any­one who fre­quently moves.

FAST FACTS • Size Medium; 3 to 15kg. • Colours Blue, choco­late, cin­na­mon, fawn, and sil­ver. • Groom­ing fre­quency Mod­er­ate; weekly brush­ing of fur and teeth, and trim­ming of nails. • Ex­er­cise High en­ergy lev­els; can be taken for...

RED DINGO COMBO CLAS­SIC CAT HAR­NESS AND LEAD The Oci­cat can be stub­born when taken out for walks, so it’s im­por­tant to put her in some­thing that’s com­fort­able. The Red Dingo Combo Clas­sic Cat Har­ness and Lead is durable and easy to use. Made of high...

OURPETS SMARTER IN­TER­AC­TIVE IQ TREATBALL FOR DOGS & CATS This treat ball is a great way to stim­u­late Puss men­tally and phys­i­cally. Sim­ply fill the ball with your kitty’s favourite treats and ad­just the dif­fi­culty to a suit­able level. A more chal­leng­ing...

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