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Bobcat and Domestic Cat Breeding Question

post #1 of 31
Thread Starter 
I hope this isn't misplaced, but even though I'm referring to what I believe is natural cross-breeding (sorry, I have no idea proper terminology), I thought people in this forum might be best suited to help me out.

A kitten turned up in my family's yard. Because of her tanish-grey coloring and the black tufts on her ears, we at first wondered if she was a bobcat kitten. A quick look at bobcat traits (she has a long black tail, no ruff of fur around her face) proved that not to be true, and we figured she was just a slightly odd-looking stray domestic cat. We took her in.

However, I've since read that domestic cats can breed with bobcats. I live in rural Kansas, where, to my knowledge, bobcats are rare but not nonexistent, and I'm unsure if this can occur in the wild, or just in captivity?

She's a sweet, happy kitten, no larger than an average kitten (assuming she's between 2 - 3 months), but behavior seems far more aggressive than any other kitten we've had.

It would put my mind at ease if someone could tell me more about the possibilities of bobcat-domestic breeding, or point me somewhere that would explain just what such an offspring (if possible) would look like. I keep coming up with incredibly vague answers from the websites I've searched. I assume she's just a domestic, but I thought I should look into it more before she grows larger.
post #2 of 31
You sure she isn't a tufted Manx?
post #3 of 31
Thread Starter 
It appears from the search I did that a Tufted Manx would be tailless? Although the search did bring me to a picture of a Maine Coon. Her ears look like a Maine Coon's, but her coat (which is kind of odd and homely), tail, feet, and temperment don't seem the same.
post #4 of 31
I know someone who has a bobcat/siamese mix. tan, with darker tan points, a bobbed tail and blue eyes. He's a big, laid-back cat ( only a little bigger than the average housecat). being a hybrid, he is sterile. temperance varies from cat to cat.
post #5 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by CommonOddity042
I know someone who has a bobcat/siamese mix. tan, with darker tan points, a bobbed tail and blue eyes. He's a big, laid-back cat ( only a little bigger than the average housecat). being a hybrid, he is sterile. temperance varies from cat to cat.
Hmmm where did you get this information? I haven't heard of any Bobcat/Siamese crossing. Just because a cat has a bobbed tail, does not mean it was crossed with a Bobcat. When talking Bobcat, do you mean an American Bobtail, or a similar breed, or a true 100% Bobcat. There is a breed of cat that, as the legend goes, has been crossed with a wild Bobcat. The breed is known as the Pixie Bob. I have 4 Pixies and yes, they do have some traits that do resemble a Bobcat. Not just with their coloring and markings, but with their behaviors as well. Amber and Boris, pictured in my signature, are true wild Bobcats. The idea of crossing a Bobcat with any domestic cat is not as easy as some may think. For one, Bobcats are very aggressive breeders and have been known to kill each other while breeding in captivity. The thought of putting any domestic cat in with an intact male Bobcat is just asking for trouble. The legend of the Pixie Bob is that this breeding took place in the wild, with the crossing of a male Bobcat with a female domestic "barn cat". These male Bobcats may have been older males, who no longer could compete in the wild with much younger males. Whether or not this legend is true has not been proven. Yes, the look of the Pixie Bob does resemble a Bobcat to some degree. The Toyger cat, a new breed of domestic cat, has been bred to resemble a small tiger, the same size as most domestics. The coloring and markings are there, but there is now way that this cat was crossed with a tiger. These markings and coloring come about by selective breeding and take years to produce the final results the breeders are looking for.
post #6 of 31
I am origianally from Maine. There is such a thing as Bobcats and domestic cats breeding. They do it all the time there.
post #7 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by AmberThe Bobcat
Hmmm where did you get this information? I haven't heard of any Bobcat/Siamese crossing. Just because a cat has a bobbed tail, does not mean it was crossed with a Bobcat. When talking Bobcat, do you mean an American Bobtail, or a similar breed, or a true 100% Bobcat. There is a breed of cat that, as the legend goes, has been crossed with a wild Bobcat. The breed is known as the Pixie Bob. I have 4 Pixies and yes, they do have some traits that do resemble a Bobcat. Not just with their coloring and markings, but with their behaviors as well. Amber and Boris, pictured in my signature, are true wild Bobcats. The idea of crossing a Bobcat with any domestic cat is not as easy as some may think. For one, Bobcats are very aggressive breeders and have been known to kill each other while breeding in captivity. The thought of putting any domestic cat in with an intact male Bobcat is just asking for trouble. The legend of the Pixie Bob is that this breeding took place in the wild, with the crossing of a male Bobcat with a female domestic "barn cat". These male Bobcats may have been older males, who no longer could compete in the wild with much younger males. Whether or not this legend is true has not been proven. Yes, the look of the Pixie Bob does resemble a Bobcat to some degree. The Toyger cat, a new breed of domestic cat, has been bred to resemble a small tiger, the same size as most domestics. The coloring and markings are there, but there is now way that this cat was crossed with a tiger. These markings and coloring come about by selective breeding and take years to produce the final results the breeders are looking for.


He's half wild bobcat. They do not breed them. He was a fluke. Bobcats breeding with domestics does happen occasionally, from what I understand, and the kits are always sterile.

this link might have more info on your questions.

http://www.messybeast.com/hybrids.htm
post #8 of 31
Thread Starter 
Wow. I guess all the known information about bobcat/domestics is less concrete than I hoped it might be. But then, I suppose most geneticists' first priority isn't testing kittens to see if they might be half wild.

I suppose as long as she doesn't rip up the other cat (or her loving owners), it doesn't really matter either way.
post #9 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by SenshiG
Wow. I guess all the known information about bobcat/domestics is less concrete than I hoped it might be. But then, I suppose most geneticists' first priority isn't testing kittens to see if they might be half wild.

I suppose as long as she doesn't rip up the other cat (or her loving owners), it doesn't really matter either way.

I have a high precentage hybrid Chausie (Jungle cat/domestic) I was under the impression that genetic testing would not reveal "wild blood" in a cat. They have passed a law in NY state to outlaw Hybrids. My kitten got his name for that reason. His name is Jesse James. He is a sweet affectionate 4 month old.

Bobbie
post #10 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4kids4cats
I have a high precentage hybrid Chausie (Jungle cat/domestic) I was under the impression that genetic testing would not reveal "wild blood" in a cat. They have passed a law in NY state to outlaw Hybrids. My kitten got his name for that reason. His name is Jesse James. He is a sweet affectionate 4 month old.

Bobbie
Oh yes, New York state and their stupid ban laws This ban law is on exotics and hybirds.
post #11 of 31
Amber
The third big kitty looks beautiful is that another coloring of a bobcat??
post #12 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by CommonOddity042
He's half wild bobcat. They do not breed them. He was a fluke. Bobcats breeding with domestics does happen occasionally, from what I understand, and the kits are always sterile.
The ONLY way you can say this with any certainty would be if you SAW the pair breeding. We have NO idea of the parentage of this kitten.


SenshiG - how old is the kitten? What kind of shape was he in physically when you found her? It could be her coat is still recovering from life as a stray, and her characteristics may become more clear once she's healthy and settled.
post #13 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky
Amber
The third big kitty looks beautiful is that another coloring of a bobcat??
Actually what you are seeing are the different color phases of a Bobcat. During the winter months, they are brown or brown grey. That is why Boris looks grey in the center picture, that was taken during the winter. All 3 are now orange or a brown/orange mix. Nakoma has the most orange on him as does Amber. Boris, since he is still a kitten, just a little over a year old, he still has a combination of orange and brown. Next summer he will be more orange.
post #14 of 31
thank you and that is very kewl...
post #15 of 31
I was under the impression that a Bobcat (meaning the wild kind) would be thinking dinner if he ran across a domestic cat. Bobcats are also so much bigger than a normal housecat. I can't imagine them breeding. Do they really breed in the "wild?" I got to see a bobcat closeup at a cat rescue (the owner used to do wildlife rescue and this guy couldn't go back to the wild) and I just can't imagine him wanting to breed with a domestic cat, as opposed to eating it.

Amber
post #16 of 31
Its quite possible and has occurred naturally from time to time. Most bobcat crosses (males) are sterile. The females aren't. If you cat winds up being a 20 lb or more cat when grown, you probably have a cross. Make sure you have the cat neutered to avoid any behaviorial problems.

I've also heard that bobcats or crosses don't always use the litter pan in the proper way!
post #17 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45
Its quite possible and has occurred naturally from time to time. Most bobcat crosses (males) are sterile. The females aren't. If you cat winds up being a 20 lb or more cat when grown, you probably have a cross. Make sure you have the cat neutered to avoid any behaviorial problems.

I've also heard that bobcats or crosses don't always use the litter pan in the proper way!

Er...Cats can be upward of 20 lbs without being bobcat crosses. Large breeds like maine coons, for example. Some moggies can get fairly big as well.
post #18 of 31
I realize that - most normal size mixed breeds are 8-12 lbs. Only a few breeds are "large" - Maine coons, Siberians, Ragdolls (to name a few).
post #19 of 31
I have had quite a few huge boys.
My biggest though was nearly 30 pounds at 4 years old.
No clue where he came from, he ran into the house one evening, well fed and cared for.
He was about 3 months old, never could locate an owner.

I'd always figured he was Maine coon, until his vet actually said he could possibly have some large cat blood in him, he never said bobcat, just big cat.
post #20 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by CommonOddity042
Er...Cats can be upward of 20 lbs without being bobcat crosses. Large breeds like maine coons, for example. Some moggies can get fairly big as well.
My parents cat is over 20 lbs and he is lean...very long and gray..huge paws....he loves to "chirp" so we aren't exactly sure what mix he is (he was found as a stray)...but he's definately a moggie.

Katie
post #21 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arlyn
I have had quite a few huge boys.
My biggest though was nearly 30 pounds at 4 years old.
No clue where he came from, he ran into the house one evening, well fed and cared for.
He was about 3 months old, never could locate an owner.

I'd always figured he was Maine coon, until his vet actually said he could possibly have some large cat blood in him, he never said bobcat, just big cat.

May I see a photo of him, if you have one?
post #22 of 31
I wish I had pics, that was at least 20 years ago, I've lost everything I've owned since then.
Husband was a cat hater, refused to let me get him neutered and he ran off one day.

He looked just like a classic brown tabby Maine coon, just huge.
post #23 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by CommonOddity042
Bobcats breeding with domestics does happen occasionally, from what I understand, and the kits are always sterile.

this link might have more info on your questions.

http://www.messybeast.com/hybrids.htm
I've always loved Sarah's site, she gives excellent information. I submitted this story to her site -- about one of my father's cats when I was young.

Dad had a friend with a Persian queen who went into heat while he was camping with her in the woods. He wasn't worried since he didn't think she could breed with anything out there. She turned up pregnant.

She had two *huge* male kittens. They were so large that she died very shortly after kittening. My father's friend gave my dad one kitten and kept the other. The one the friend kept died at around four months old -- presumably due to some genetic flaw. Dad bottle-fed the kitten he named Pedro, who survived for a very long time before succumbing to feline leukemia.

He was the length of some dogs, and he had seasonal coat-shedding leading to what appeared to be color change. He had a lot of quirks and was very aggressive and territorial, to the point of biting through my mother's toe (yes, all the way through it) when she had the audacity to wear a black nightgown to bed with my father and kick Pedro out of his rightful spot. He would attempt to kill dogs in the neighborhood, and did kill several cats. He scared the postman so badly that he mentioned the situation to the city, who told Dad he would have to find some way to restrain the cat. Pedro would jump through screen doors and windows, and occasionally broke a glass window trying to get outdoors. Eventually they got a harness for him and tied the harness to a cinderblock -- to slow him down enough to give animals and people a chance to get away from him.

He was very good with children, though -- especially if Dad essentially told Pedro to mind a baby that was on a blanket in the floor. He'd pace around it and not let anyone else near it except Dad and sometimes the baby's mother.

Since he attempted to mate female domestic cats, my dad decided to breed him to his mother's Persian. The matings were actually successful -- but the kittens were still very large (much bigger than Maine Coons), requiring delivery by c-section. They were also very intelligent, and much more friendly than Pedro. There were never more than three kittens in a litter, and most often two or one.

I have no idea what the original Persian bred with, and also no idea why Pedro was fertile. My thought is that since he was half-Persian and bred with another Persian that there was enough genetic similiarity to allow perhaps half of the kittens to survive -- could account for the small litter size.

I have a picture of my dad and Pedro, with Pedro wrapped around his shoulders and so big that his body was nowhere close to being entirely supported by Dad's shoulders and neck. It's not very good as far as resolution (it's over 20 years old and was kept in my dad's wallet for many years) but the size of the cat is visible. As soon as I get a scanner I'm sending it to Sarah for her site. He had a full tail, so we've assumed that he was a Lynx-hybrid as they are common in the area where the kittens were conceived.

I hope this helps a bit..
post #24 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arlyn
I have had quite a few huge boys.
My biggest though was nearly 30 pounds at 4 years old.
No clue where he came from, he ran into the house one evening, well fed and cared for.
He was about 3 months old, never could locate an owner.

I'd always figured he was Maine coon, until his vet actually said he could possibly have some large cat blood in him, he never said bobcat, just big cat.
I see you're in Utah -- were you possibly in North Carolina at the time? That's where my father's suspected hybrid was from, and he sired several kittens that were given away (possibly getting abandoned later). This was over 20 years ago as well, so the timing struck me as interesting. It's probably a huge coincidence (no pun intended).

Moriah
post #25 of 31
I was in Mississippi actually.
Before Warehauser moved in and deforested most of the state.
post #26 of 31

Wow, That is an amazing story. Enjoyed it very much   creampersian.gif  Thank you for sharingthanks.gif. I'm getting a kitten that could be part wild bobcat......hum????? Who knows for sure? But she is a beautiful kitty and I really wanted another cat..... it's been a long time and I'm ready......heartpump.gif
 

post #27 of 31

FancyPaws - beautiful poodle!  I have 2 black spoos (and 2 kitties)

post #28 of 31

Wow where did we dig up this 7 year old thread!! I think this is a record....doh3.gif

post #29 of 31

i think that u might have a pixie bob. look it up and see if it fits...if so someone is looking for her and she may have a chip in her that a vet or aspca would check for free and return to the owner....

post #30 of 31

Some places have banned breeders claiming to have bobcat cross cats because they say they don't exist.  They say the genes are too different for them to interbreed.

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