How Cats Evolved from the Savanna to Your Sofa
Savannah cats are a hybrid breed created by crossing a domestic cat with a serval, a wild African cat species. The process of domestication for Savannah cats involves several steps:
1. Breeding: The first step is to breed a domestic cat with a serval. This is typically done through artificial insemination, as servals are difficult to breed in captivity. The goal is to produce a hybrid offspring that has the appearance and traits of a serval but the temperament and behavior of a domestic cat.
2. Socialization: Once the hybrid kittens are born, they are raised in a domestic environment from an early age. Breeders handle and interact with the kittens regularly to ensure they become accustomed to human contact and develop a bond with their human caregivers.
3. Early exposure: Savannah kittens are exposed to various stimuli, such as different sounds, smells, and environments, to help them adapt to different situations. This early exposure helps them become more adaptable and less fearful of new experiences.
4. Selective breeding: Over generations, breeders selectively breed Savannah cats with desirable traits, such as a friendly and sociable temperament, while minimizing the wild instincts inherited from the serval parent. This selective breeding process helps to further domesticate the breed.
It is important to note that while Savannah cats are considered domesticated, they still retain some wild traits and behaviors due to their serval ancestry. They require special care and attention, and potential owners should be prepared to provide an appropriate environment and meet their unique needs.