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Bengals - Personality and Gender

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
I have been researching bengals for about 8 months and know that a bengal would bring me such joy, laughter, and entertainment. I recently went to a TICA cat show and am looking for potential breeders. My research has come to a stand still concerning gender.

I was contemplating the possibility of showing a bengal, but due to the lack of monetary means necessary that would be required per show, I have decided to pursue this course at a later time in life.

I have had thoughts and opinions from numerous breeders on the personality and behavior of both genders. I would love to find a friendly, outgoing, curious, and very loving bengal (which may possibly include some random mischief). I am looking at the possibility of getting two bengals so that they may offset each other in activity, but also out of sheer frustration of falling in love with both spotted and marbles.

One of the concerns I had for a male was the potential for spraying. However, if neutered early enough this should not become an issue. I, at this time do not know if 2 males, 2 females, or one of each would be best. I will have one other cat, Lexi, who is very sweet, laid back, and friendly. I also am open to just seeing what happens once I start looking.

For those who have bengals, what are your bengal's personalities like? Do you find that similar genders get along better or does it matter at all? I am looking at getting bengals only as a pet at this time. I would love any advice since I really am torn on the issue.
post #2 of 19
In my experience over the years, (doesn't matter if its a pedigree or mixed), males tend to be more outgoing, friendly to strangers, more accepting of new pets coming in, and easier to adjust to things. Females tend to be more territorial to new animals (especially if the resident cat is a female). They are more accepting of a new male coming in then a rival female.

Of course there are exceptions

I have a mixed breed female, a neutered male Ocicat and will be getting another male Ocicat next year. Ling hated Charlie for months; and he was just 4 months old coming in the house.

So I would recommend you adopt males. Bengals are very high energy cats, so it may be wise to adopt 2 kittens (littermates). Most breeders will have them neutered/spayed before you adopt so you don't have to worry about things if you choose to get one male and one female.
post #3 of 19
I know you're looking for mostly owner input on this question, so I'll make this brief.

Over the years we've placed more kittens as pairs than just a single kitten. Having sent them out in all combinations, MM, MF, FF, I've found that since they are kittens growing up together, they always do well and seem to remain fast friends for life.

The caveat is the resident cat. This is where the trouble can start. If the resident cat is particularly unaccepting of the kittens, tensions will rise and the kittens may actually start fighting with each other, along with the resident cat.
In most cases things will settle down in short order and they all will get along once a loose pecking order is established.

Kittens usually want to be accepted by the resident cat and they will make efforts to be submissive and get in the good graces of the head cat. This is usually a short process and having 2 kittens who will play with each other, gives the resident cat a break from a single rambunctious over-active kitten.
post #4 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kai Bengals View Post
I know you're looking for mostly owner input on this question, so I'll make this brief.

Over the years we've placed more kittens as pairs than just a single kitten. Having sent them out in all combinations, MM, MF, FF, I've found that since they are kittens growing up together, they always do well and seem to remain fast friends for life.

The caveat is the resident cat. This is where the trouble can start. If the resident cat is particularly unaccepting of the kittens, tensions will rise and the kittens may actually start fighting with each other, along with the resident cat.
In most cases things will settle down in short order and they all will get along once a loose pecking order is established.

Kittens usually want to be accepted by the resident cat and they will make efforts to be submissive and get in the good graces of the head cat. This is usually a short process and having 2 kittens who will play with each other, gives the resident cat a break from a single rambunctious over-active kitten.

I agree that is why I am deciding on getting two bengals, but do not know if it will be from the same breeder or not. I will get them pretty close in age. Lexi is so laid back that I don't want the one bengal terrorizing her. So have decided on two to keep each other occupied until I get home from work.
post #5 of 19
Getting two to give Lexi a break is a very good idea.

As for male/female. I think gender isn't that important really. Nikita is female and she's friendly, outgoing, very sweet and active. She's pretty good with strangers and confident. Not a lapcat but she'll snooze next to me on the sofa quite often (often using my thigh for a pillow).

Having said that the females are often more territorial and have a harder time accepting new cats but if you're not planning on adding more cats I don't think that'd be a problem. The males can be bigger but some of them don't get big and some of the females are quite large. My Nikita is a 12lbs cat and actually bigger than her dad, go figure.

It's great that you're doing your research.

I ended up getting a female because I live in a rented place so didn't want to have as little risk as possible for spraying, not that spraying is common in male cats that are neutered early enough.

So yeah, I think it's more important to get the cats from a really good breeder than what gender they are. It might be easier for Lexi accepting male cats since she's female so there's that but if she's easy going that might not be an issue.
post #6 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Siggav View Post
Getting two to give Lexi a break is a very good idea.

As for male/female. I think gender isn't that important really. Nikita is female and she's friendly, outgoing, very sweet and active. She's pretty good with strangers and confident. Not a lapcat but she'll snooze next to me on the sofa quite often (often using my thigh for a pillow).

Having said that the females are often more territorial and have a harder time accepting new cats but if you're not planning on adding more cats I don't think that'd be a problem. The males can be bigger but some of them don't get big and some of the females are quite large. My Nikita is a 12lbs cat and actually bigger than her dad, go figure.

It's great that you're doing your research.

I ended up getting a female because I live in a rented place so didn't want to have as little risk as possible for spraying, not that spraying is common in male cats that are neutered early enough.

So yeah, I think it's more important to get the cats from a really good breeder than what gender they are. It might be easier for Lexi accepting male cats since she's female so there's that but if she's easy going that might not be an issue.
Lexi was the last addition to our household. That being said, she was pushed around by all the others, male and female, however, she does seem to get pushed around more by the girls.

I also think with the tables turned, with her being the dominant cat, that kittens will be easier to introduce than adults. I will leave gender open for now. Finding a breeder is the first step.
post #7 of 19
In my experience with all my past and present cats the males are more laid back and affectionate cats. My very special cat was a male mixed breed. He was the very special love of my life. I have never had any of my male cats spray. I always had them fixed before they had a chance to get their hormones going.

Our youngest addition is a female bengal kitty, she is almost 8 months old now. She was given a hard time by my eldest female but that didn't last long. Zoey in her young age is gaining rank as alpha female. Zoey is affectionate, she loves to be with us all the time, but she has her limits on how much she likes to be cuddled.
Feeding time is amusing because she is very protective over her food. She makes a growling noise that is so funny, it sounds like a growl while she is saying yum yum yum.... She loves to play in water, and loves picking up the water dish and tossing the water all over the floor. Yesterday she threw my big plastic water container off the counter all over the floor. I love it when they are naughty.

If I could have done it again I think I would have bought her litter mate also, so they could have grown up together.

I haven't had any problems with her getting along with the other cats...
post #8 of 19
I have one female bengal, Coco. I got her when she was 10 mos old. She came into my household when I had 2 DSHs, one male, Toby, and one female, Zara. Toby was ~2 yrs old at the time and Zara was 1 1/2 yrs old. From the very beginning Coco treated Toby and Zara like they were her long lost best friends, much to T and Z annoyance! She quickly fit right in.

About 1 1/2 yrs later I got Jeta, a female about 1 1/2 yrs old. All 3 resident cats, including Coco, growled and hissed at her a bit for a few days but that was about it. They all get along fine now.

Oh yeah, personality wise, Coco is shy with more than one strange person at a time but warms up pretty quickly. She is very sweet and affectionate with me. Sleeps curled up against me every night and frequently naps curled up in my lap.
post #9 of 19
I went with boys when I decided on Bengals just because I find my three females DSH to be moody and my DSH boys love bugs. I have 8 boys and 3 girls. None of my boys spray. Not one! They were all neutered early.

Within six months of getting Takoda I was back to Nial and Teri for Bengal number #2. Takoda did so well with the resident cats but he would wear them out. They would sleep the day away and Takoda would walk around the house crying for playmates.

As soon as we arrived home with Magnum it was a perfect click between the two boys.

Takoda and Magnum have two very different personalities. Takoda doesn't like to be held. Loves a good round of chase human or cats he doesn't care. Thanks to my 14 year old son. He will talk up a storm if he thinks I've offended him in some way or if I'm late with breakfast. He greets me at door after work. He doesn't know when to take a break when it comes to Da Bird. We normally have to call it quits or he will totally wear himself out. He is a Momma's boy. Everyone says he does no wrong in my eyes. He doesn't do anything wrong.

Now Magnum oh my goodness. This boy is such a love bug. Loves to cuddle up on my lap in a blanket and just purr his heart out. Magnum loves the shower. I have to keep a watch or I will find him sitting at my feet in the shower. He loves everyone in the house and spreads out his loving between all of us. He is a follower when it comes to getting into trouble with Takoda.

Both boys are shy around company. They will watch from the hall or sprint through the living room until they figure out that all is good. They love playing chase with our 15year old dog tails.

I can't offer advise about girls but I do know that boys are just about the sweetest things on earth.
post #10 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by snosrap5 View Post
I went with boys when I decided on Bengals just because I find my three females DSH to be moody and my DSH boys love bugs. I have 8 boys and 3 girls. None of my boys spray. Not one! They were all neutered early.

Within six months of getting Takoda I was back to Nial and Teri for Bengal number #2. Takoda did so well with the resident cats but he would wear them out. They would sleep the day away and Takoda would walk around the house crying for playmates.

As soon as we arrived home with Magnum it was a perfect click between the two boys.

Takoda and Magnum have two very different personalities. Takoda doesn't like to be held. Loves a good round of chase human or cats he doesn't care. Thanks to my 14 year old son. He will talk up a storm if he thinks I've offended him in some way or if I'm late with breakfast. He greets me at door after work. He doesn't know when to take a break when it comes to Da Bird. We normally have to call it quits or he will totally wear himself out. He is a Momma's boy. Everyone says he does no wrong in my eyes. He doesn't do anything wrong.

Now Magnum oh my goodness. This boy is such a love bug. Loves to cuddle up on my lap in a blanket and just purr his heart out. Magnum loves the shower. I have to keep a watch or I will find him sitting at my feet in the shower. He loves everyone in the house and spreads out his loving between all of us. He is a follower when it comes to getting into trouble with Takoda.

Both boys are shy around company. They will watch from the hall or sprint through the living room until they figure out that all is good. They love playing chase with our 15year old dog tails.

I can't offer advise about girls but I do know that boys are just about the sweetest things on earth.
Thanks for the insight! If I do go with boys, they will be neutered as soon as recommended! However, I have heard from many breeders that a lot of the boys are more laid back and friendly.
post #11 of 19
I agree with Siggav,

Finding the right breeder is much more important than the sex of your cat. That breeder will be your resource, they will know their cats well for many generations and can help you pick the best cats for your household in their litter, since they will have raised that litter and know each kitty in it very well. Also, if you live close enough seeing your kittens in person will help a lot, you can get a feel for which ones you like and talk about it with your breeder about that, since it is litter specific and not huge sweeping generalities that you have heard about. Each kitten is different, they are all individuals, and can't always be boxed in so easily.

Since you already have a certain look that you are in love with, don't box yourself in even more with a sex. The less demanding you are the easier it will be to get two the best kitties for you from one of their litters IMO. If the Bengals are from a good breeding program, male or female, either one is a great choice. Good luck in your search.
post #12 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cococat View Post
I agree with Siggav,

Finding the right breeder is much more important than the sex of your cat. That breeder will be your resource, they will know their cats well for many generations and can help you pick the best cats for your household in their litter, since they will have raised that litter and know each kitty in it very well. Also, if you live close enough seeing your kittens in person will help a lot, you can get a feel for which ones you like and talk about it with your breeder about that, since it is litter specific and not huge sweeping generalities that you have heard about. Each kitten is different, they are all individuals, and can't always be boxed in so easily.

Since you already have a certain look that you are in love with, don't box yourself in even more with a sex. The less demanding you are the easier it will be to get two the best kitties for you from one of their litters IMO. If the Bengals are from a good breeding program, male or female, either one is a great choice. Good luck in your search.
Thanks! I am very open to either gender and finding the right breeder who produces cats with a good temperment will be the most important. There are a few breeders who live close by, but have yet to see them at a show. One is a closed cattery so I would have to be a potential buyer to see the cats. I have some others I would like to visit, but they are much further away so I will be going to a few more shows to get to know as many breeders as possible and getting to know the ones I have already met, even better.
post #13 of 19
This is my first message on this forum and I apologize ahead of time for my messages. We are a fledgling cattery and we are so completely in love with Bengals that I can be pretty long winded.

Congrad's on your choice and I think it is great that you not only decided to get two, but that you are taking the time and effort to research it all ahead of time. Bengals are a spectacular breed but like any cat can vary in personality tremendously.

IMO the largest variable that affects the development of an individuals personality traits is the manner in which they were socialized. I have a strong preference for fully in house catteries. I also beleive the kitten should not be removed from its mother before it has been 100% fully weaned for at least several days. Weaning is a large and perhaps the most important part of early socialization.

Given proper socialization a Bengal will fully develop the breed traits that have helped make them one of the most popular cats in the world. If possible it is nice to spend some time at the cattery prior to the placing a deposit for your kitten(s).

The personality of the mother cat will tell you much about the expected personality of her kittens as she is their primary social trainer. The secondary influence will be the owner of the cattery and the environment that the cats are kept in.

I personally find that the Bengal male and females exhibit exactly the traits one tends to attach to the sexes.

The males crack me up. The are big boned and well muscled and tend to believe they can muscle their way though things. They can be aloof and a bit self centered and at the same time they are massive suck ups when they want to be and seem to be more likely to be a bit of a lap cat.

The females are often more delicate and very athletic. They seem to chose to think their way though things rather then muscle their way though. I find the females to be more detail oriented and more concerned about their surroundings and the others that share them. In my experience they are less likely to be lap cats but they like being close to people and will snuggle up beside you.

They are astonishing animals and if the genetics are strong and the socialization handled correctly they are capable of surpassing any pet you have ever owned. They are capable of becoming a true personal companion of the highest level...at least that is how we feel about ours.
post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by WildExpressions View Post
This is my first message on this forum and I apologize ahead of time for my messages. We are a fledgling cattery and we are so completely in love with Bengals that I can be pretty long winded.
Welcome to TCS. Hope you stick around, we can use a few more breeders here and I'm happy to welcome a fellow bengal breeder.
post #15 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kai Bengals View Post
Welcome to TCS. Hope you stick around, we can use a few more breeders here and I'm happy to welcome a fellow bengal breeder.
thank you very much, I truly appreciate it. I've been hunting around for a place to hang out a bit and so far not having much luck. Lots of very catty cat owners out there ... imagine that

edit:_______________________

wow! I went and had a look at your site. Your stud Premiercats Loki Locomotive has sharp clean clear tri-colors that are just spectacular and Drinkwater Six K of Meridian has huge potential. You have quite a few nice Queens. Meridian Tuscany really jumped out at me. Very nice. I hope to be you in a few of years
post #16 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by WildExpressions View Post
This is my first message on this forum and I apologize ahead of time for my messages. We are a fledgling cattery and we are so completely in love with Bengals that I can be pretty long winded.

Congrad's on your choice and I think it is great that you not only decided to get two, but that you are taking the time and effort to research it all ahead of time. Bengals are a spectacular breed but like any cat can vary in personality tremendously.

IMO the largest variable that affects the development of an individuals personality traits is the manner in which they were socialized. I have a strong preference for fully in house catteries. I also beleive the kitten should not be removed from its mother before it has been 100% fully weaned for at least several days. Weaning is a large and perhaps the most important part of early socialization.

Given proper socialization a Bengal will fully develop the breed traits that have helped make them one of the most popular cats in the world. If possible it is nice to spend some time at the cattery prior to the placing a deposit for your kitten(s).

The personality of the mother cat will tell you much about the expected personality of her kittens as she is their primary social trainer. The secondary influence will be the owner of the cattery and the environment that the cats are kept in.

I personally find that the Bengal male and females exhibit exactly the traits one tends to attach to the sexes.

The males crack me up. The are big boned and well muscled and tend to believe they can muscle their way though things. They can be aloof and a bit self centered and at the same time they are massive suck ups when they want to be and seem to be more likely to be a bit of a lap cat.

The females are often more delicate and very athletic. They seem to chose to think their way though things rather then muscle their way though. I find the females to be more detail oriented and more concerned about their surroundings and the others that share them. In my experience they are less likely to be lap cats but they like being close to people and will snuggle up beside you.

They are astonishing animals and if the genetics are strong and the socialization handled correctly they are capable of surpassing any pet you have ever owned. They are capable of becoming a true personal companion of the highest level...at least that is how we feel about ours.
That's why it is so important to me to find a good breeder and kittens that are very well socialized. Determining who truly does socialize is the hard part and I suspect I will be spending many hours driving to catteries.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kai Bengals View Post
Welcome to TCS. Hope you stick around, we can use a few more breeders here and I'm happy to welcome a fellow bengal breeder.
Nial...in all honesty, if I am not satisfied with any here, I will ask you to interview me, but that is still some time to come. I will go over the potential breeders once I have a list narrowed down and understand the pedigree. How many hours is it from Texas to North Carolina driving?

(P.S. my mom has not been well, so I have not had a chance to look at Loki's pedigree)
post #17 of 19
We got a boy and a girl, but that was just by chance since we got them through rescue. They are not siblings, but fromt he same breeder and just a few weeks apart in age so are best friends. Our other cat is a 13 year old female (12 at the time we got the "Bs").

Anyway, like others have said, if you have another older cat in the household, two bengals are almost essential. One of these kids would have driven Eliza nuts, but since they're are two of them, they keep each other entertains, mostly.

That said, there have been issues with the female. She's definitely more alpha than Eliza. The cat we lost just before getting the bengals was alpha so Eliza is used to not being top cat. Lily does seem to understand that she is sort of subordinate to Eliza, because we'll observe her doing a submissive show of her belly to Eliza now and then. On the other hand though, she does chase her on occassion and gets really annoying with her. I think it's really just that Lily wants to play with Eliza, but Eliza doesn't see it that way. Rajah (the boy bengal) on the other hand, mostly ignores Eliza. He's definitely way more laid back than Lily, as others have said. He's a good lapcat, while Lily will barely tolerate being picked up. She'll sit on your lap only if you are sitting in certain places in the house (weird), and she'll come up to you to be petted, which she loves, but she doesn't like to be held.

Anyway, good luck to you. I'd definitely recommend either two males or a male and a female. I like having the male and female, even if Eliza doesn't, mostly because they're so different.
post #18 of 19
I can't be much help with Bengals per se, but hopefully I can help reassure you about your spraying worries, because I think male cats are wonderful and I wouldn't want you to rule out having boys

I have 3 young male cats. The first, Radar, was neutered at 6 months old, and has never sprayed. The second, Sonic, was added as a kitten when Radar was 9 months old, and he was neutered at nearly 7 months old. He went through a brief period of upset which caused inappropriate peeing, but it was mostly stress related, hormones may have played a part, but it stopped when he was neutered. The third cat, Jacob, was neutered at 1 year old after a short career as a stud, and came to live with us 6 days after his surgery, when Radar was 21 months old and Sonic 15 months old. He has never sprayed, even when entire, even though he was sexually active. Even the stress of a new home with new cats and new smells did not cause him to spray. My boys have perfect litterbox habits.

Neutered males that were neutered at an appropriate age, and that haven't started spraying beforehand, do not normally start spraying. I actually think that males make better pets, but that is just my personal opinion and I admit that I am biased
post #19 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Epona View Post
I can't be much help with Bengals per se, but hopefully I can help reassure you about your spraying worries, because I think male cats are wonderful and I wouldn't want you to rule out having boys

I have 3 young male cats. The first, Radar, was neutered at 6 months old, and has never sprayed. The second, Sonic, was added as a kitten when Radar was 9 months old, and he was neutered at nearly 7 months old. He went through a brief period of upset which caused inappropriate peeing, but it was mostly stress related, hormones may have played a part, but it stopped when he was neutered. The third cat, Jacob, was neutered at 1 year old after a short career as a stud, and came to live with us 6 days after his surgery, when Radar was 21 months old and Sonic 15 months old. He has never sprayed, even when entire, even though he was sexually active. Even the stress of a new home with new cats and new smells did not cause him to spray. My boys have perfect litterbox habits.

Neutered males that were neutered at an appropriate age, and that haven't started spraying beforehand, do not normally start spraying. I actually think that males make better pets, but that is just my personal opinion and I admit that I am biased
I am pretty certain I will be getting two now. Whether a boy or girl or two boys, two girls...who knows. I will see who I fall in love with, but I think I may be getting at least one boy.
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