How to tell if your cat is a hybrid

How to tell if your cat is a hybrid

The hybrid cat breed is a result of mixing a wild cat with a domestic cat. One pointer to tell if your cat is a hybrid is by their appearance. Domestic hybrid cats usually look like wild cats but with a house cat’s personality and sometimes are unpredictable because of their wild nature.

 General characteristics of Hybrid cats

Hybrid cats have a very unique appearance, highly intelligent, and energetic. Their sizes may vary. Some can be small, while some can be remarkably massive, depending on their cat ancestors.

 Their coat displays very sophisticated colors and patterns. Most domestic hybrid cats have stunning markings on their bodies, such as spotted, marbled, or rosetted, similar to their wild cat parents. 

Hybrid cats personality is remarkably unique as their physical appearance. This is because of the qualities they have inherited from their wild ancestry. Hybrid cats’ behavior may vary from breed to another, depending on what type of wild cat was crossed with the domestic cat. Some hybrid cat breed displays wildcat behavior. They may be aggressive, solitary, and extremely territorial. While on the other hand, hybrids like the Savannah, a product of crossbreeding an African wild cat with a domestic cat, are considered very friendly and loyal even compared to other domestic cat breeds.

If you see these features in your cat, it may be a sign that your cat is a hybrid.  

Most common domestic hybrid cat breeds

The list of cats below will help you determine if your cat is a hybrid. Each hybrid cat guide tackles the history and characteristics of their breed. Read on carefully and see if your cat carries the same features of any of these following hybrid cat breeds.

Bengal Cat

The Bengal cat is a new cat breed and is a result of a cross between a wild Asian Leopard cat and a domestic cat. For a Bengal kitten to be considered a domestic cat, they need to be at least 3-4 generation away from their cat parents. The Bengal cat has a domestic cat temperament and personality, but this breed got their wildcat parents’ look. They display a fascinating spotted coat from their back and belly, and their fur is short but dense like a pelt and shines under the sunlight.

Their size is typically more massive than the regular domestic cats because of their wild nature.

Chausie Cat

The Chausie hybrid cats, also known as the Stone Cougar, resulted from crossbreeding a domestic striped cat with a Jungle cat. These cats are medium to large, muscular with long legs and broad chest. They look like small mountain lions. These cats are very energetic, that’s why they require a larger space for activities. They may jump and climb around your house all-day. Chausies tend to be social cats and love to interact with their family members.

Savannah Cat

This hybrid cat breed is a cross between a wild African cat with a domestic cat. Savannah cats are considered as a tremendous hybrid cat to keep as a pet. This is because of their loyal, social, and friendly personality. Their coat may come in brown, silver, black and, smoke with solid black spots. These cats are highly intelligent, athletic, and spiritually sensitive. They are relatively taller and leaner than normal domestic cats.

Pixie Bob Cat

Experts believe that Pixie Bob cats are a cross between a wild male Bobcat and a female domestic cat. Their appearance is similar to wild cats. Their coat is spotted and wooly. They also got the ears and tail of a bobcat. However, their behavior is more like a domestic cat. They are intelligent, affectionate, and interactive.

Temperament concerns of hybrid cats 

The cat associations do not allow ownership of early generation hybrid cats, from first to third-generation (F1, F2, F3). This is due to their very unpredictable nature. Early-generation cats are difficult for many owners to handle as they still carry their natural wild behaviors. These behavior includes marking their territories with feces, urine spraying, and unpredictable aggression.

They also don’t get along well with other cats or household pets and even with other people. Some owners are shocked by these behavioral concerns because they’re not prepared to house a hybrid cat pet, which leads to irresponsible breeding or abandonment. 

Hybrid cats controversy

Some hybrid cat breeds are rare and pricey, depending on their uniqueness and rarity, such as the Bengal cats, which are considered as exotic. Though these hybrids are highly praised and cost a lot of money to purchase, some cat organizations such as the Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) doesn’t acknowledge hybrids as official breeds. This is because of the controversies of hybrids when it comes to their behavioral concerns, ownership, and responsible breeding. However, there are some group starting to recognize the hybrids, such as TICA (The International Cat Association)

There are also restrictions or requirement papers for keeping hybrid cats in some states, countries, or cities.

Common questions

Why is it challenging to raise a hybrid cat?

The challenging part of having a part-wild and part-domestic cat is adjusting to their unpredictable behavior. These cats can be aggressive; sometimes, their aggression may lead to scratching and biting. It is better to learn first your cat’s personality and how to tame them. 

Does the vaccine for normal cats work for hybrids?

Vaccination is another concern for hybrid cats. Experts say that there is no guarantee that the rabies vaccine will work in wild animals. Because of the lack of clinical testing on wild animals, the rabies vaccination became off label for the hybrid cats.

Is a hybrid cat a good pet?

Just like the other domestic cats, hybrid cats can also be a good pet. There are hybrids that possess the temperance of a domestic cat. They are sociable and affectionate. However, you should be prepared for their unpredictable behavior. And some hybrids are territorial and prefer to be alone. Hybrid cats can be a good pet but they are not for everyone. It takes more than effort and patience to responsibly raise a Hybrid.

Final thoughts

Hybrid cats can be identified by their wildcat-like appearance and personality. The most distinct personality of hybrid cats is being territorial and their aggressive tendencies. They usually look the same as their wildcat parents from their coat colors and markings. Their sizes are also relatively similar to their wild and domestic cat parents. 


I love animals. Growing up we had a lot of cats, rabbits and chickens.

Recent Posts