The Savannah Cat is not a standard breed of cat, but rather a hybrid produced between the domesticated cat and the serval, a species of small wildcat found in Africa. Savannah Cats have grown in popularity over recent years for their exotic appearance and unique behavioral traits, but owners of the Savannah Cat must be well educated in their care. Savannah Cats are usually classified based on generation, which also corresponds to the amount of serval in their blood. The classic Savannah Cat is 50% cat and 50% serval, and of the F1 generation. Generations can go as far as F5 and F6, with the most removed generations being cheaper than the earlier generations. The Savannah Cat originated back in 1986 and became an official breed in 2001. These cats are said to be "dog-like" in behavior, and can exhibit such behavior as leash-walking and being trained to fetch. Savannah Cats are generally more sociable than other domesticated cats. They are also excellent jumpers, and have been reported to jump up to eight feet high. This means that they require special environments with reduced hazards. Also unusual to this breed is its natural affinity for water. Many Savannah Cats enjoy being immersed in water, and will play with any water they are presented with. It is important for owners to be aware of the unique attributes of the Savannah, as they are unique among other breeds of domesticated cat. Savannah Cats are larger than traditional domesticated cats, with a tall, slim build that emphasizes their size. A first generation Savannah Cat may weigh up to 20 pounds, with successive generations having a wide range between 7 and 30 pounds. The spotted pattern of the Savannah Cat is reminiscent of the Bengal breed, and they have short, thick fur. Early generations of Savannah Cat will often have large, pronounced serval-like ears. Savannahs may either communicate via meowing or by chirping. Due to the different mixtures of domesticated cat and serval, and the variety of s that may be used, the Savannah Cat may vary widely in appearance. In general, the Savannah has been found to be healthy, which may be a result of hybrid vigor. There are no noted medical problems specific to this breed, though care needs to be taken when prescribing medication because servals have smaller livers than domesticated cats. It is advised that Savannah Cats be kept on high protein diets, and raw food is preferable. Because the Savannah Cat is a wildcat hybrid, the laws concerning its ownership vary depending on area and it may be prohibited in some jurisdictions.
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