How to tell if your cat is a Savannah

How to tell if your cat is a Savannah

The Savannah is a breed of a cat that descended from a cross of an African wild cat and a domestic cat, specifically the Siamese cat. That’s why they have an interesting appearance and personality. They are highly intelligent and energetic felines with a large body structure, wedge-shaped head with large, tall ears, long neck, and a short, thick tail.

 Physical attributes of a Savannah Cat

Medium to large body Structure 

Savannah cats are medium-sized to large cats. They usually weigh 8-10 pounds, and on some occasions, when their breed is more pure, they can weigh 30 pounds. Since a Savannah cat is a hybrid of a wild cat and a Siamese, it is not surprising that this breed is relatively large in body figure. It must have inherited the body structure of its ancestor, serval.

Spotted tabby coat

Their coat texture ranges from slightly coarse to coarse. It must have been a characteristic inherited by the wild cat ancestor of the Savannah. Unlike some breeds like the Persian, Savannah has a shorter and coarser coat texture.

Savannah’s coat’s most common color patterns are brown-spotted tabby, silver-spotted tabby, black and black smoke. Some kittens are born with rosette, marble, pointed, blue, cinnamon, chocolate, lilac, and other dilute colors. Savannahs are well-known for making visually satisfying coat colors. Thus if your pet is good-looking and has a creative pattern and color, it must be a savannah.

The Savannah’s patterns are solid dark spots which can be either round or oval, continuously flowing across the body. Parallel stripes can be found at the back of the head up to the shoulder blades, and smaller spots are found in the legs, feet, and face.

Triangular-shaped head 

A Savannah’s head is triangular in shape and topped with large ears. In that sense, their head is a modified wedge with rounded contours and longer than it is wide. This is perhaps one of the most obvious features of a Savannah cat. So, the round faces and small ears technically mean that your cat is not a Savannah.


The tail of a Savannah is in medium length as to proportion to their body. The tail only agrees with the body structure since it is relatively long in general structure.


Female Savannahs has long legs which came from their ancestor, the serval. Although the Savannah cats’ ancestor is a male serval, luckily, the female savannahs were the ones to have inherited its long legs.


The Savannah’s ears resemble that of their ancestor, the African Serval Cats. They are remarkably large and high on the head. They are upright with rounded tips. They inherited a pattern at the back of their ears called ‘ocelli’ marks to scare off predators. Some marks look like butterfly wings. 

Almond-shaped eyes 

Savannah’s eyes are medium-sized and are usually set underneath their hooded brows. All eye colors are acceptable with the Savannah without interdependency with the coat’s color. The bottom half of the eye resembles an almond shape.

 Savannah’s Personality

Savannah cats are good jumpers.

With or without a trampoline, Savannah cats make up of good jumpers and they can jump up to feet. You may be surprised to find them on top of your fridge, cabinets or swinging on your chandelier.

Hunting instincts

Savannah cats inherit the ability of their ancestors when it comes to hunting instincts.

If your cat loves catching mice and even plays with your goldfish in the water bowl, it has a great chance of being a Savannah cat.

A curious and energetic cat

Savannah cats are naturally active and even love to play with water. They are playful and sometimes even destructive when playing with toys and or furniture. They are curious cats and always make ways for their own entertainment, which can sometimes turn out to be a wrong decision.

Savannah cats are friendly

This cat breed is a good choice for a family with children and other animal pets, even dogs. They get along well with strangers and other feline friends especially when they’re introduced at an early age.

Not a lap-cat

Savannah Cats couldn’t stand sitting on his owner’s lap for quite a long time

If your cat loves to be petted and sits on your lap all the time, that must be another breed but not Savannah. They tend to be independent most of the time but they always appreciate the attention given to them by their owners.

Frequently asked questions regarding the Savannah Breed

What does a Savannah Cat eat?

Just like any other cats, foods in the groceries can make a Savannah cat thrive. However, cheap filler foods can make Savannah’s bones brittle and weak, so feeding them with cheap filler foods can make their bone break easily. The best diet for a Savannah cat is raw meat that is properly prepared. 

Where are Savannah cats illegal and banned? Why?

Savannah cats are banned and considered illegal but at least not everywhere. A lot of misinformation has been spread about a Savannah; they are savage, they kill animals and tear a limb. Hawaii, Alaska, New York, Nebraska, Massachusetts, Texas, etc. banned the Savannah cats mainly because they are subjected to rabies issue regarding their ancestor but has not been proven yet.

Does Savannah cat make up a good pet?

Savannah cats are very active and adventurous cats, which means that they explore everything in the house and even destroy things only to get bored. They make a good companion because of their playful behavior but not a pet that would purr in your lap and would let you stroke its back.


The Savannah cat, despite its complex origin, is very easy to identify. You would only base on their physical characteristics, behavior, or the place they originated from. Just like any breeds of cats, the Savannah can be your little furry friend *only if you are not allergic to cats*. Identifying the breed of your cat is perhaps one of the most satisfying things you’ll ever experience, but if you are not yet sure if your feline is a beautiful Savannah, you can always go to the vet or any reputable breeders that might help on determining your cat’s breed.

How to tell if your cat is a Savannah


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

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