Wild in looks, the Ocicat possesses a tabby temperament. This breed thrives on the company of people – even first-time visitors to the home. Don't be surprised if they are the first ones to greet guests. Ocicats revel in busy, active households and eagerly enjoy the company of other family cats, dogs and other pets. They do not like being home-alone cats and may act out of boredom and lack of regular exercise.
- 5.5 - 14 pounds
Ideal Human Companions
- Active households
- Households with children
- Households with other pets
- Experienced cat owners
Ocicats on Catster
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- Wildcat-looking spotted coat
- Extremely outgoing
- Loves to hang out with family pets
- Never met a stranger
- Easy-to-care-for coat
- Adapts to new situations easily
What They Are Like to Live With
If you are looking for a cat who will interact with you and even engage in conversation, than the Ocicat is tailor made for you. Without proper training, they can be a bit demanding.
Highly intelligent, Ocicats are willing students who learn basic obedience commands and tricks easily. They are also easily trained to wear harnesses and walk on leashes.
These feline athletes love to play as hunters and to leap onto very high places.
Things You Should Know
The Ocicat coat is very low-maintenance and can be easily kept looking its best by rubbing a chamois across it once a week to remove dead hairs.
Keep items you don’t want your nosy Ocicat to find behind locked doors or cabinets with childproof latches.
Prone to gingivitis, this breed benefits by having you brush its teeth on a regular basis to prevent tartar buildup.
This cat evolved from taking the best of two popular breeds: Abyssinians and Siamese. In 1964, Virginia Daly, a cat breeder from Berkeley, Mich., bred an Abyssinian with a Siamese and produced a litter of ticked-coated kittens. The second litter produced a male kitten with a wildcat-looking spotted cat who she named Tonga. Further cross-breeding with these two breeds plus the American Shorthair led to the creation of the Ocicat breed.
Tonga was the first Ocicat shown at a CFA show in 1965, but the breed itself went into a temporary hiatus for 11 years while Daly, regarded as its main breeder, took time to care for a sick family member. She returned to breeding Ocicats in the early 1980s and the breed has steadily grown in popularity worldwide ever since.
Now ranked 18th in popularity among the CFA-recognized breeds, the Ocicat was granted championship status in 1987.
The Look of a Ocicat
The Ocicat trademark signature is the array of thumbprint-sized spots in a bull’s eye pattern sprinkled all over the body.
This agouti-spotted cat features solid muscles on a sleek, medium-sized, athletic-looking body.
The Ocicat’s spotted coat comes in 12 recognized colors: tawny, chocolate, cinnamon, blue, fawn, lavender, ebony-silver, chocolate-silver, cinnamon-silver, blue-silver, fawn-silver, and lavender-silver. If you look closely, you will note that each hair contains several bands of color. Females weigh between 6 and 9 pounds and males average between 9 and 14 pounds.
Talk About Ocicats
Cheerful, daredevil, and sensitive
I love the happy personalities -- the comedy, naughtiness, and cleverness of this active breed. Did I mention the spots? Gotta love spots. If a mischievous, active, attention-demanding, follow-you-all-over cat is going to annoy you, don't adopt one!
"Playtime is mandatory or they will drive you crazy," said one breeder -- and was she ever right! But I LOVE that about them. They will bug me until I play with them, walk them, or love on them. They cheer up many a grey day.
There cannot be toys left out, or things the cat may think look like toys, such as mini Beanie Babies. My cats steal them off my desk whenever possible. So don't scold them for finding joy and play in everything. That is Oci personality. Lock your stuff up where they can't get it -- they open cabinets, doors, and drawers.
They are among the brightest of cats. Mine know about a dozen words, including meat, cheese, ears, outside, bedtime, playtime, feeding. Just say the same word every time that thing is presented to them, and they will learn what you mean, like a preschooler.
Vocal Ocis will have different cries to express themselves -- people have thought I has small kids in the house! Not all are talkers. I have one who "calls" like a siamese and he is also my talker, who chirps and kisses.
Mine have all exhibited the Siamese sensitive tummy syndrome: Upset them, they throw up. If they fight after a meal, they throw up. Change diet too fast, they throw up. The food is too cold (out of the fridge) -- you got it -- they throw up!
Dry diet makes them constipated, now that they are middle-aged kitties. I make a raw diet now (cheaper than frozen patties) and all the cats are thriving. Coats improved, less nervous tummy episodes, better overall health.
They tend to be flea-allergic. But then so am I :-)) Revolution handles that.
They run to the door when someone comes, and ask to be petted, even of strangers. Everything new is a possible friend. They are confident and size things up fast.
Single-coated, they must be indoor-only. They shed very little. Mine paw a way under the covers to sleep with me. I often wake up with a kitty in the crook of each arm!
They do have some separation anxiety when left with a sitter. I think the Siamese loyalty is in there somewhere. If you work all day, I suggest a second cat, or playful and gentle small dog. Companionship matters to these guys. They are SMART! They will create mischief and be destructive if unplayed with, lonely, and bored. Ocicats are not peaceful, decorative cats, unless sleeping in your lap.
As kittens, they are rowdy bundles of energy, without good judgment. Read twice: "Kitten proof the house." Then enjoy.
~Carla R., owner of Ocicats