Are you looking forward to a spotted domestic cat? Ocicat may be the better choice for you!
This breed resulted as interbreeding of Abyssinian, Siamese, and American Shorthair cat breeds. Also, it is the only domestic cat that has been bred particularly to imitate the wild “ocelot.”
Larger than the normal domestic cat, this cat breed is a well-muscled and active cat. Besides, it is an adorable, gentle and social, too. This curious breed is devoted to humans and also gets along with other animals.
So, it proves to people who think that cats are independent and unfriendly. If you have this cat, you’re a fortunate owner!
This cat has an interesting history as well. And, it is available in more than 10 pleasing colors. A good pet for your family, it is a low-maintenance cat, too!
Let’s know more about this wonderful breed in this article!
Ocicat Breed Characteristics Sheet
- Origin: United States of America
- Size: Small to medium
- Lifespan: 10-15 years
- Height: 9-11 inches
- Weight: 9-15 lbs (males); 6-9 lbs (females)
- Coat Appearance: Short, Smooth, Shiny
- Coat Colors: Blue, chocolate, cinnamon, fawn, lavender, silver, tawny,
- Temperament: Playful, sociable, friendly, affectionate, intelligent, active
- Good With Children: Yes
- Intelligence Level: High
- Good With Pets: Yes
- Hypoallergenic: Yes
- Grooming: Less
- Shedding: Moderate
- Suitable For Apartments: Yes (with proper exercise needs)
- Need For Exercise: High
- Easy To Train: Yes
- Good For First Time Owners: Yes
- Health Issues: Amyloidosis, Pyruvate kinase, Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), Periodontal disease
- Litter Size: NA
- Average Price: $700-$1000
Ocicat has an interesting history!
The first Ocicat was born as an unexpected result of the experimental breeding between Abyssinian and Siamese cat breeds.
In the year 1964, Dr. Virginia Daly, a cat breeder, attempted to create a Siamese cat with Abyssinian points.
First, she mated a male ruddy Abyssinian cat (Dalai Deta Tim) with a female seal point Siamese (Dalai Tomboy Patter), which resulted in the kittens having Abyssinia’s looks.
Later, she mated a female half-Abyssinian from the previous litter (Dalai She) with the Siamese cat (Whitehead Elegante Sun). This resulted in the Siamese cat breed with Abyssinian points. After repetitive breeding, she spotted an ivory-colored kitten with golden spots on it. The kitten was named “Tonga.”
But, daughter of Mrs. Daly nicknamed Tonga as “Ocicat” as the ivory kitten resembled the wild cat breed “Ocelot.” Later, Tonga was neutered and sold as a pet.
Then, with the interest of Dr. Clyde Keeler, renowned geneticist, Dr. Daly repeated the breeding in 1980 to produce more Ocicats! So, you can say that the Ocicat was born truly in 1980.
In 1965, it was publicized and in 1966, the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA) recognized this breed. But, the CFA mistakenly named the parents of Ocicat as American shorthair and Abyssinian.
Later, it included the Siamese cat’s name but didn’t remove the American Shorthair from the parent’s list. This led to the silver color Ocicat.
After the rebirth of Ocicat in 1980, it got the provisional status from the CFA in 1986. A year later, it attained the Championship status. Now, you can see many Ocies in shows.
And, it has been recognized by almost all cat registries today.
Ocicat Appearance And Coat Colors
Ocicat is a strong, well-muscled breed with spots scattered over its body and also down the legs. Its almond-shaped eyes give an interesting expression. And, it has large, pointed ears that are triangular in shape at the top.
Having a wedge-shaped head and strong chin, its golden eyes have mascara-like markings. It has a broad, well-defined muzzle and firm jaw. Its eyes come in several colors except for blue.
- Body – Ocicats have a solid, long body and deep chest.
- Back – Its back is slightly level higher in the rear.
- Legs – Legs are well-muscled, powerful and of medium length.
- Tail – It is long, medium slim with only a slight taper and with a dark tip.
Ocicat has a short, smooth coat that gleams like satin. Similar to Ocelot, it has rows of spots right from the spine to the shoulder and to the tail. The spots are large and look like thumbprints, resembling bull’s eye pattern.
This cat comes in 12 pleasing colors. The predominant colors are blue, chocolate, cinnamon, fawn, lavender, silver and tawny.
The coat color can also be a combination of silver and other colors resulted in blue silver, chocolate silver, cinnamon silver, ebony silver, fawn silver, and lavender silver.
Ocicat also comes in four patterns: classic tabby, pointed, ticked and solid.
Generally, the area around the eyes, chin and lower jaw will have the lightest color. The tip of the tail will have the darkest color. You can see the distinctive markings from any orientation.
You can determine the correct color of an Ocicat by noticing the color at the tail’s tip.
Ocicat Size And Life Span
It is a large cat than the normal domestic cat with a solid, muscular body and medium-length legs. Generally, males are taller than females. Their height is between 9 and 11 inches.
Sporting an athletic appearance, its weight should surprise you. Females weigh around 6 to 9 pounds. And, males weigh between 9 and 15 pounds.
Ocicat is a healthy one. But, it may inherit a few health issues due to genetic reasons. So, it has quite a short lifespan. This breed lives for about 10 to 15 years.
Ocicat may have the looks of wild cat. But, it is a dedicated and affectionate cat to its owner. So, you can describe its temperament as “dog in a cat’s body.” This breed will steal your heart despite diversities in it.
Family Pet – This breed is friendly and is completely outgoing. It loves people and will greet the guests to your home. Also, it likes to sit in the visitor’s lap and play with him or her.
This cat can, therefore, serve well as a family pet in households where people pay more attention to it.
Adaptable – It adapts well to any environment and can be a great travel companion for you. It can also accompany you during vacation.
Vocal – Ocicats will tell you their whole day activities when you return home in the evening. Yes, they are vocal like the Siamese parents but they won’t bore you by giving a detailed explanation.
Tap dancer – It is a tap dancer like its Abyssinian ancestor. It will perform tap dances on the top of your bookcases. It entertains you well in this way!
Ocicat Shedding And Grooming
Ocicat sheds minimal and it has a short coat. It will keep itself clean. So, you can easily groom it!
But, it is recommended to provide grooming experience for your tabby from a young age. It will pave the way for easy grooming during the adulthood of this cat. Now, let’s take a look at the basic grooming requirements of Ocicat!
Grooming Requirements Of Ocicat
- Brush its coat with a rubber hand brush or natural bristle brush at least weekly once to remove dead hairs. It will also help for the even distribution of oils present in the skin.
- Start brushing from its back and then to sides, tummy and end up with chest. You can brush its tail, but be gentle while brushing.
- A chamois cloth will also be helpful in the removal of dead hairs.
- It is not much required for this cat. If your cat participates in shows, bath it with a cat shampoo for the enhancement of its coat color.
- So, choose the tone of shampoo according to its coat color (pearl tone for blue and fawn tabbies; bronze tone for chocolate, cinnamon, and fawn cats; whitening tone for silver tabbies).
Cleaning ears and eyes
- Check the ears weekly once for bad smell or redness. And, wipe the dirty ears using a soft, cotton ball dampened with vet-recommended ear cleanser.
- If you find any discharge in your tabby’s eyes, wipe the eye corners using a soft, damp cloth to remove it.
- It is advisable not to use the same cloth for both the eyes to prevent the risk of infections.
- Brush your tabby’s teeth with the vet-approved toothpaste on a regular basis.
- Don’t brush its teeth too hard as it may injure it! Gentle strokes will help for its teeth and gums.
- Have an appointment with the vet when needed.
- Trim your cat’s claws once in a few weeks to avoid pain when the claws become sharp.
- You need to trim only the white tip using guillotine-style nail trimmer. Don’t touch the pink area as it may hurt your Ocicat.
Ocicat Training And Exercise
You can easily train Ocicat because it loves the company of humans. But, you have to use positive training methods because it is sensitive. So, you shouldn’t be a harsh trainer to it!
Ocicat will also respond good to basic cat commands such as sit, come, speak, lie down, etc. It loves learning to walk on a leash and harness. You can also teach some dog-like tricks to this cat!
Reward-based training will also work better for it! You can provide treats such as lean deli meat, cooked chicken or turkey, cooked eggs, steamed broccoli, and mashed potatoes.
Ocicat is an intelligent, active, energetic breed and requires playtime and cuddles. It needs regular activities for its physical and mental health. So, you have to provide a lot of exercise to it!
You can make the Ocicat indulge in activities such as ball fetching, toy retrieving, etc. It will also enjoy the water and accompany you in the bathtub or shower. Let’s discuss how you can make the Ocicat play such activities and the things to ensure while playing!
Walking – This breed likes to go for walks. So, take it for a walk around the nearby area. It also loves to walk on a leash.
Puzzle toys – Provide puzzle toys to your Ocicat to keep them occupied. This activity will be challenging for it and it resolves the puzzle with intelligence. So, it is a good activity for its mental health.
Ball fetching – This breed likes to play fetching. You can try this activity initially using a mouse toy. Laser pointers and wand toys will also be helpful when your tabby grows up. Although it is a vocal breed, Ocicat is sensitive to harsh verbal commands and can lose its trust toward its master.
- Ocicat is agile and is able to make high jumps. So, it needs your attention more.
- This breed is able to unlatch the doors. So, keep important things such as keys away from it!
- Always keep it on a harness and leash. Ensure that the harness fits well to it and you have securely attached the leash. This will help the Ocicat to not get hurt if it climbs a tree or try to run off from the leash.
Ocicat requires high-quality cat food to keep it in good physical condition. It doesn’t have the tendency to become obese. And, it will burn the calories by being active.
Most cat foods contain taurine, an essential amino acid, which helps for heart and good vision. So, if you are choosing foods for your tabby, ensure that taurine is present in those foods.
But, you should know how much to feed your tabby and when to feed it. You should also know what to feed and what not to feed your cat. This will prevent it from health issues.
Choosing a high-quality cat food
The best way to choose this food is to read the ingredients. If meat is listed as the first ingredient, the food may be high quality and you can opt for it!
Cats like to have small food portion. So, divide the meals into two equally measured portions.
Don’t free-feed your tabby.
Maintain a regular feeding schedule for your cat. Follow the guidelines mentioned in the package of the cat’s food package and divide the recommended daily feeding amount into half.
For example, if the suggested daily amount is 2/3 cup, feed your cat 1/3 cup of food in the morning and 1/3 cup in the evening.
Consult the vet if you are unsure about how much to feed your cat.
Provide clean, fresh water to it in well-cleaned stainless steel or ceramic bowl every day.
If you want to give it treats, ensure that treats won’t exceed 5% of your tabby’s daily calories.
Want to name your Ocicat? Consider a few things before you find a name for it!
Appearance is the first thing to keep in mind while searching names for it! For example, if your cat looks small, name it as “Tiny.”
Personality is the next thing to consider. For the playful cats, the name “Tom” can be the best choice!
Coat colors are also a wonderful factor in finding names for your tabby. As Ocicats are available in more colors, you can find a lot of names for it!
The name “cinnamon” can suit well for the cinnamon-colored cat. And, you can name the blue-colored cat as “Sapphire.”
Ocicats are also able to learn to respond to their names. So, you don’t need to worry if you aren’t able to finalize a name.
Have a list of chosen names and call your Ocicat with the names. If it responds well to any name, consider it as the name for it!
Ocicat Male Names
Ocicat Female Names
Ocicat Health Problems
Generally, Ocicat is a healthy breed. But, it may have genetic health issues. You can see some health problems in this cat due to inheritance.
Amyloidosis – A hereditary disease in which the “amyloid, an insoluble protein,” will get deposited in the liver or the kidneys. It leads to lesions, dysfunction and finally organ failure.
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) – It is the most common heart disease in cats. Hypertrophy of the heart muscle will become thicken when this health condition occurs. An echocardiogram can confirm this disease.
Pyruvate kinase – It is a regulatory enzyme that plays a key role in the energy metabolism of red blood cells. When this health condition occurs, deficiency in this enzyme can develop anemia.
Periodontal disease – Both the Siamese and Abyssinian cats are prone to this disease. So, the Ocicat can have this disease genetically.
Ocicat Price And Breeders
Ocicats are expensive. It costs around $700 to $1000. But, sometimes you can get spotted cats from the range of $636.
The other varieties of this cat cost $530, including tax. You can get them neutered and spayed Ocicats from $106 to $318 depending on their age.
Ocicat Breeders in the United States of America
- Cosmic Spots Ocicats
Media, PA 19063
Tel: (484) 477-3335 (10:00 am to 5:00 pm EST, By Appointment Only)
- Purrfurrdots Ocicats
254 S. Church
Waynesboro, PA 17268
Tel: (717) 762-7222
- Dynamicats Ocicats
Jacksonville, FL 32034
Tel: (810) 919-5859