The Cheetoh Cat is a feline with the ferocious looks of a wildcat, combined with the gentle temperament of a domesticated shorthair. These cats make fantastic pets; they are highly intelligent, affectionate, and playful.
The Cheetoh Cat is also a natural-born runner and climber, not to mention cuddler! Cheetoh Cats are beautiful, interactive, and happy to make friends with just about anyone… what more could you ask?
Cheetoh Cat Origins
In 2003, Carol Drymon of Wind Haven Exotics Cattery bred the first Cheetoh Cat. The goal had been to create the most wild-looking domesticated cat ever. This, without having to introduce new wild blood. After a year and a half of research, the Cheetoh was born! This extraordinary feline was bred from an Ocicat and a Bengal.
The Cheetoh Cat gets their distinctive spot and rosette patterning from the Bengal side. Bengals themselves are a shorthair and Asian Leopard Cat mix. As you can guess, Cheetoh Cats get their leopard-like coloring from the latter.
Unlike most cats, Bengals and their Cheetoh offspring tend to enjoy playing in water. Cheetohs also reflect the intelligence, athleticism, and liveliness of the Bengal.
Ocicats are covered in marbling and spots, much like Bengals are. However, despite appearances, they actually don’t have any recent wild blood in their gene pool. The Ocicat has been domesticated for such a long time that they have an utterly sweet and docile temperament -one that the Cheetoh Cat has inherited as well.
Where Can You Find The Cheetoh Cat Now?
The Cheetoh Cat has been a registered breed with the United Feline Organization since November 2004. They are listed as an experimental breed-only by the International Cat Association, as the breed is still fairly new.
Though places that breed them are somewhat rare, you can now find Cheetoh Cats in the US, Australia, Canada, and NZ. They cost between $400-$800.
Cheetoh Cat Appearance
Cheetos Cats are renowned for their gorgeous coats, which are decorated with spots, rosettes, or marbling. Rosettes are spots made up of two colors, each different from the main coat color. Marbling in Cheetoh Cats also shows up occasionally. This is a seemingly-random darker swirl pattern that moves horizontally across their lighter fur. Cheetoh Cat hair is short, velvety, and marvelously sleek!
When it comes to the appearance of the Cheetoh Cat, the effect is dazzling overall. As intended, this grand little feline greatly resembles its Asian Leopard ancestor.
Cheetoh Cats come in some breathtaking color variations, including: cinnamon with black/brown spots, sienna with black/brown spots, lynx-point or gold spotted, black-spotted smoke, and black spotted silver.
The Cheetoh Cat is simply regal. They have a fearsome appearance, with larger ears than your average cat, and a much stronger jaw as well. Their muzzles are broader than the Bengal or Ocicat, similar to a Cheetah or a Tiger. Cheetoh cats also have big, almond-shaped eyes, which are bright and expressive.
Through some fluke of nature, the Cheetoh Cat is bigger than either of its parent breeds: the Ocicat or the Bengal. The enormous feline weighs between 15-25 pounds on average, and they are nearly all muscle. Your average cat weighs somewhere between 9-12 pounds, and at 9-17 pounds, bengals are not much larger. Ocicats can be as little as 6 pounds, and rarely exceed 15. You can compare this to a Liger outgrowing both of its parents as well; the already huge Lion and even bigger Tiger!
Male Cheetoh Cats tend to be bigger than the females. They share the same muscular physique, however.
Cheetoh Cats walk with their shoulders down, giving them a distinctive, wildcat stalk. Like their Asian Leopard ancestors, Cheetohs move with confidence, grace, and power. These mighty little cats always look like they are on the prowl!
Here are some things you should know about the temperament of an average Cheetoh cat:
The most noteworthy aspect of the Cheetoh Cat’s temperament is how gentle they are. This is not a cat that will take a swipe at your dog, or hiss at a noisy child. Even male Cheetoh Cats tend to be naturally maternal, looking after others’ kittens as if they were their own! These cats are sweet as can be, especially to those they love!
The Cheetoh Cat is energetic and playful. You can keep them entertained for a long time with just a toy with a feather. They will want you to chase them, and after they flee, they may even be bold enough to chase you back!
For Cheetohs Cats, life is full of fun, and so they are very cheerful. You are sure to be amused at the speed and acrobatics that Cheetoh Cats have to offer. That, and their mischief.
Do you like to cuddle? Then the Cheetoh Cat fits the bill. These big-hearted cats are just full of love. Prepare yourself for headbutts, licks (perhaps attempted cleanings as well), affectionate chirps, and more. Just make sure not to leave your Cheetoh Cat outside unattended, or they may with the best intentions bring you a gift as well (perhaps half a mouse?).
The Cheetoh cat is also wildly clever. These intelligent animals share the innate curiosity of their species, and they enjoy puzzle games. Toys that they have to get their treats out of are also perfect for these smart, determined fellows. When it comes to simple tricks, like fetch, the Cheetoh Cat is a natural.
They can be attentive listeners, and they probably understand more of what you’re saying than you think!
Here is what you should expect sociability-wise from a Cheetoh:
Cheetoh cats are really outgoing animals. As a matter of fact, an antisocial Cheetoh Cat is unheard of. They are super affectionate, have lots of love to give. You see, that wild appearance is belied by a sweet and docile nature. Cheetoh Cats are incredibly gentle, and it is very unusual for them to express any aggression or fear. This makes them great with people. This includes children! Cheetoh Cats are quick to bond with the entire family, and are deeply loyal.
They are also interactive and expressive, and like to talk. Say hello to yours, and they will likely greet you back! Cheetoh Cats have a variety of tail movements (flicks, sways, etc.) to show how they feel. They are masters of the slow blink (one of the ways cats indicate trust). They are spirited and playful. The result? A real charmer!
Cheetoh Cats actually prefer to have other pets in the home, too. This cat breed is not shy, nor are they very picky with the friends that they make! They get along with their own kind, and can warm up to just about any animal. This includes big dogs (provided that they do not antagonize the Cheetoh, of course), and some have even made friends with horses and other livestock.
Cheetoh Cats are a little too friendly with smaller pets, such as rabbits, mice, guinea pigs, or ferrets, which they will stalk and kill. These felines are keen hunters. Due to their wild ancestry, they have an extra high prey drive. You will need to keep small pets away from your Cheetoh Cat altogether!
So, feel free to introduce your Cheetoh to other animals… just remember to do it in a controlled manner!
Health and Lifespan
As of yet, there are no known health conditions specific to the Cheetoh Cat breed. The lifespan of the Cheetoh Cat is 16 years on average; about the same as a fully domesticated shorthair.
What To Feed Your Cheetoh Cat
Feeding your Cheetoh shouldn’t be much different than feeding any other cat! Even the most domesticated, docile cat is still a natural-born carnivore, after all.
That being said, as Cheetoh Cats are a more muscular breed, getting enough protein is more important than ever.
So, what should a Cheetoh Cat’s diet look like? Fortunately for you, this is quite simple! All that Cheetoh cats really require is plenty of meat -and fresh, clean water.
Your best option is to feed your Cheetoh Cat meat that is raw. Cats’ bodies are specially designed to digest raw meat; smart as they are, they never did learn to cook! They eat birds, mice, and other small critters totally raw.
The healthiest meats for Cheetoh Cats are low-fat, high-protein fowl. Many opt for grocery store turkey and chicken. You will almost certainly need a meat grinder in order to pulverize the meat while it’s raw. For additional nutrients, and as long as they are ground thoroughly, raw organs and bones can be included as well (cooked bones are too tough for cats to chew).
If you are unable to make your own raw cat food at home, you can always buy premade food that is still raw. You can find these in the refrigerated section at your local pet store.
If premade raw food is out of your price range, canned food can also be OK. This is fortified with nutrients, yet compared to dry food, it contains less filler.
For cats, dry food is at the bottom of the rung. Most of these are stuffed with fillers (such as wheat, potatoes, peas, and other foods that cats have no use for), and the water content is always far too low. Cats have a naturally weak thirst drive, as they are used to hydrating from a fresh kill.
To keep your Cheetoh Cat hydrated, Raw food and canned food are the best options there are. Hydration is key to kidney health, and will help your Cheetoh live longer.
Foods That are Poisonous for Cheetoh Cats
Cheetoh cats share the same allergies as your average domesticated shorthair. The foods that are the most toxic for Cheetoh Cats include: chocolate, coffee, citrus, grapes and raisins, avocados, onions, garlic, chives, salt, Xylitol, yeast and uncooked dough, most nuts, and of course, alcohol.
Believe it or not, you don’t actually have to groom your Cheetoh Cat, thanks to their short fur. They do not shed much at all! If you’d like to brush your Cheetoh anyway, you can do it about once a week. This will take care of any loose hairs they may have leftover, and help keep their beautiful coat glossy and sleek!
Cheetoh Cats do shed a bit more seasonally, about twice a year. At these times, you may wish to brush them more -perhaps two to three times a week.
Exercise and Play
Cheetoh Cats truly are big wildcats at heart. They are fierce hunters, and won’t hesitate to take down birds, mice, gophers, chipmunks, and other small animals. This in mind, you can see why it is not advisable to have your Cheetoh outside unsupervised or unrestrained. For local wildlife, this could spell disaster!
Instead, feel free to take your Cheetoh on a walk. Restrain them with a harness that is good and escape-proof. This may take a little while for your cat to get used to -don’t worry, they will eventually figure out that wearing the harness means they get to go on a walk. Start walking your Cheetoh young to make training them to wear restraints and behave easier.
Cheetoh Cats not only love to walk, but they also love to run! One of their favorite games is Chase The Cheetoh. This entails… you guessed it: your Cheetoh Cat fleeing, while you chase after! Many Cheetoh Cats find this wildly exciting, and good fun.
Next, the Cheeto Cat is a climber. You will definitely want to provide cat trees and other climbing areas, or they will find some on their own (for example, the top of a dresser).
Despite how new the breed is, you can see how Cheetoh Cats have quickly become so popular. Simply put, they are a delight to have around! Cheetoh Cats are happiest in the company of their people. They are capable of true devotion, and they are full of friskiness and cheer.
These felines will run, climb, play, chat… then take a cuddle break. They get along swimmingly with other pets and people alike, and will be happy to say ‘hi’ to a visitor!
Soon, you will wonder how you ever lived without your ball-of-sunshine Cheetoh Cat in your home!