The California Spangled Cat’s strong, tubular body, short spotted coat and “hunter-like” gait give the illusion of wildness. Pale amber to deep copper eyes look out from a head with medium length and width and are framed by a slightly rounded forehead above and sculpted, wide, prominent cheekbones below.
The blocked or rounded spots that dot the back and sides of the body are sometimes grouped into rosetted patterns, and the top of each foreleg is marked with a dark bar. Colors include silver, bronze, gold, red, blue, brown, black and charcoal. Males weigh 12 to 15 pounds; females 8 to 10 pounds.
Intelligent and playful, the California Spangled Cat takes an active role in family life. It enjoys playing any games that involve chasing or pouncing on toys, and its athleticism makes it a good candidate for leash training.
This is a friendly cat who enjoys being with people. It gets along with other cats but has no objection to being an only cat. Like its leopard counterpart, the California Spangled Cat likes being in high places and will appreciate having a tall cat tree where it can keep an eye on household activities. It may or may not be vocal.
The California Spangled Cat is generally healthy.
California Spangled Cats require weekly grooming.
The California Spangled Cats cat is quite rare and is not readily available.
The idea for the California Spangled Cat came about in the early 1970s after writer and cat enthusiast Paul Casey visited Africa and became concerned about the plight of leopards and other spotted cats, who were poached for their skins. He decided to create a spotted domestic cat to help raise awareness of the need for wild cat conservation. Using only domestic cats—including Abyssinians, American and British Shorthairs, Siamese and spotted cats from Egypt and Malaysia—he began a breeding program to produce a cat that resembled a leopard in miniature.
By 1986, he had succeeded, and the cats with the exotic look made their first appearance in the Neiman Marcus Christmas catalog. While there was interest in the cats, they remain rare today. They are registered with The International Cat Association (TICA) and may be outcrossed with domestic long- or shorthairs, Abyssinians, and American and British Shorthairs.