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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 2:31 am 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:49 am
Posts: 9
Hi There,

My Husband (an cat-allergy sufferer) and I are considering purchasing a Bengal cat. Is anyone on this forum also allergic to cat dander? I've heard that this breed is hypoallergenic and does very little self-grooming and hardly sheds...all good news for those with allergies. We will be visiting a cattery 1 1/2h drive from where we live on March 4th to see how my husband feels around the cats. I am hopeful that all goes well. I spoke with the breeder over the phone last week to ask lots of questions. She has 13 years of experience in breeding Bengals and use to show them but no longer does. She says that she typically sells her cats between $1,500-$2,500 and this depends on color, markings and personality. Since we aren't interested in breeding or showing the upper end seems very steep. How negotiable is price, or is there no negotiating involved? What recommendations do you all have as far as what to look for while at the cattery?

My next set of questions is specifically related to living with children. I have a 4, 2, and 8wk old, all little girls. They have lots of toys (such as wooden doll house figurines, plastic pretend produce for role play grocery shopping, puzzels, pretend doctor tools, etc...). I'm trying to think about how to "bengal proof" our house so that it is a safe environment for the new kitten but also keep some toys out for my girls as well. I'm concerned that the girl's toys will be constantly scattered and hidden around the house so that we are living in a complete wreck all the time. We have scheduled "clean up" times throughout the day where every toy has it's place... the 4 & 2 year old are great about this. Should I put away all our little toys for a while or not worry about it if the Bengal has plenty of it's own toys? I'd LOVE to hear from owners who could speak into this...as a side note. What do ya'll do about your end-table lamps? Do the cats knock those down while jumping on the end tables?

Thanks for your support! I'm really hoping to get all these questions (and more) answered and have a plan in place so that we can welcome a curious little kitten home with a sense of preparation and realistic expectations.

Mrssos3


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2017 7:29 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
Posts: 8148
Welcome to our forum! The first thing to know is that a bengal doesn't shed as much as a regular domestic cat, but they do shed. There are some people who are allergic to bengal dander. Hopefully, things will go well with your husband and he won't suffer any reaction.

The price you are being mentioned is high for a pet quality bengal. However ... your breeder has a ton of experience and may have a cattery name that screams "gorgeous kittens from a line of Supreme Grand Champion cats." Those catteries charge more due to the quality of the cat. A bengal is a bengal -- so it's up to you if the quality of the cat is more important. Know, too, that many breeders socialize the kittens to the point where the kittens can tolerate children and other pets. If you're willing to give me the cattery name, I'll let you know any information I have on them.

You will HAVE to bengal proof your home. Know that bengals are cat burglars. They love to steal things and hide them, so make sure small children toys are not available to the cat. You don't want anything that could cause a choking hazard. Keep anything of value well away from a cat. They are known to jump high and knock things over.

Bengals are curious creatures and will inspect every nook and cranny in your home. They are high energy and need human interaction. Playing with them is a must. They want to be close to you. They will follow you around. They also want to be HIGH in the air, so a tall cat tree is a must. Bengals are nothing like a domestic regular cat. They can be challenging. They are intelligent and will test you. They are a life-time two-year-old toddler. They can open doors.

You obviously have a bustling household. Once the kitten arrives, you need to place the kitten into a safe room so it can acclimate to its new environment. It is stressful to be taken away from your mom and siblings and put in a home with new people, new smells, everything is strange. It's best if the kitten is given a chance to calm down. Bathrooms are fine. You may not have a spare room. But, a litter box and food and water and bed need to be placed in this area. The kitten can be played with -- even brought out into an open room to hold and handle. Children can get very excited over a new pet and they are anxious to hold and cuddle it, but your kitten may need a more quiet environment (unless the breeder has children and the kitten is used to being picked up). Note that many bengals are not lap cats and do not like being held. You will have to play most of this by ear. Feel free to play with the kitten. They love wand toys. You will want to keep the kitten on the food and litter that the breeder has been using.

Hopefully others will chime in on things I may have left out.

Let us know how it goes.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 12:01 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Sat May 19, 2012 8:00 am
Posts: 707
Location: Ogden, UT
Hi there,

Sherry did a great job in hitting the highlights of the concerns of and preparation for a new Bengal kitten.

I do not have children in my home anymore but my gut feeling is, if you have baby-proofed your home, you will have a lot of the Bengal-proofing covered.
My boy was quite clumsy as a kitten so anything that was not fastened securely was likely to be knocked over, usually inadvertently, by him as he explored his world. Place anything breakable that you treasure out of his reach (i.e. locked away in a secure drawer or closet).

As far as grooming goes, Quasar is grooming almost constantly, including sharpening and lengthening his talons. He doesn't seem to shed a lot but his hair is so fine and light that the only place I notice it accumulating is on the comforter on our bed, where he sleeps in the afternoon. I can only see the hair when the sun shines on it and the glitter gives it away.

Please give careful consideration to adding this new, sometimes needy, member to your family. It is a lifetime commitment.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 12:50 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2010 1:00 am
Posts: 4142
Location: Portland Oregon, USA
I've never really been a hard-core negotiator, but I think in general you have more leverage once the kitten gets some weeks/months past the 12 week mark, or is one of the colors the fewer people look for (blue/black) or has a coat that people think are undesirable (low contrast marking, and I think less people look for marbles). Also if you get two, many breeders will heavily discount the second.

Bengals aren't really hypoallergenic, but many people report that their allergies are lessened than with other cats. It's good that you are visiting!

Could a Bengal knock over a table lamp? Absolutely :lol: Mine never have, but it's the kind of thing they would do!

What to look for? For me it's pretty simple: health is #1 and personality is #2. Find a nice, big, active kitten who seems to be thriving, no eye or nose discharge. And then if he/she shows a particular interest in you or your family, I think you've found your new cat!

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 8:15 pm 
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Bengal Cat

Joined: Sun Dec 11, 2016 12:25 am
Posts: 32
Hello, Sherry worded it perfectly for me.

I will just add a couple of things, I'm allergic to all sorts of dander, horse, cat, dog, gerbil ect, but with my bengal the allergies are not bad at all, just being in a room with a dog made my eyes swell up and I'd sneeze alot and my asthma would get triggered, but with my bengal it's not like that at all, she does groom herself frequently though. The only symptoms I have had is itchy eyes and that's only if I've touched near my eye area without washing my hands first and I don't do that very often anyway or if she licks my face or puts her face on mine but I would say that they do produce less dander and our bengal sleeps on our bed and on my lap and this hasn't effected my asthma or eyes, you can get wipes for their fur but I'm unsure how well these work, also don't forget that when your viewing the kittens there will be alot more dander produced than just one in your own home :) Oh and yes bengals are very cheeky they push stuff off of the table all the time so hide the smashables and don't panic if you loose your bengal in a room because they have probably found the smallest place that you didn't even check because you didnt think that it was even possible to hide there!

With the kids toys, I have a nearly 4 year old and she's very good at tidying them all up, however our bengal will go after them if left out occasionally but it hasnt been a very big deal as she is quite content with her own toys, if my daughter has alot of small toys out then I will shut the door to be on the safe side, my daughter will play ball with her so they share toys anyway!

I hope it goes well they really are a joy to have around!


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 8:25 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2010 1:00 am
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Location: Portland Oregon, USA
Sherry wrote:
They are known to jump high and knock things over.


Are they? :eek:

youtu.be Video from : youtu.be



youtu.be Video from : youtu.be

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 9:52 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Sat Oct 31, 2015 9:44 pm
Posts: 676
Both of these videos is my Pearl x 2 I have no books, ornaments or damagable items on display any more, when it was just Magic he wasn't too bad but since having Pearl Magic has picked up and learned alot of her naughty behaviour.

Although she is really naughty I find it quite amusing to sit and literally see her mind going round thinking what can I do next.

I have never known a cat that can jump so high it can take a picture from the wall, that's my girl.

She walks along the radiators so she can reach up to things on the wall, we've had pictures, clocks, calenders you name it off the wall so I now put everything out of reach.

They are both very loving but not lap cats and Pearl especially has a very high energy level, she is on the go all the time and loves to play none stop.

Magic tends to shed more than Pearl but there is never any on the furniture, I mostly see it in the areas they use most like brushing past the curtains, I vacuum these off regularly as I also have allergies but I take a tablet every day from the doctors and eye drops which keep it at bay.

I do sometimes find them a little hard work especially Pearl, if I am having a bad day with my back and fibromyalgia I find it difficult to play with them sometimes but we find a way.

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Magic (brown spotted boy born 31 March 2012)
Pearl (seal Lynx Point girl born 1 October 2015)
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 2017 6:03 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Joined: Wed Dec 21, 2016 5:17 am
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Just to chime in on the allergies issue:

Ever since I have been young, I have always been allergic to both cats and dogs- more allergic to dogs than to cats. Came in the form of a super stuffy nose and itchiness/hives, but I always loved playing with both when I was younger.

Since getting older though, I have found my allergies to dogs getting much worse. They have a certain aroma or smell that when I encounter it, I just start feeling all itchy and uncomfortable. It really sucks because I love dogs. I do still play with them, but it certainly has its consequences, and I always keep an anti-histamine closeby.

My allergies to cats; however, have only gotten better with time. One of my ex-girlfriends in college, whose place I would crash at often when we were in school together, had an adorable rescue cat that I loved. She would often change the bed sheets and sweep/vaccuum to keep the dander to a minimum to accomodate my allergies, but there is only so much you can do. And although there were nights where I woke up with hives all over itching myself like a mad man, I think it was all worth it because I think it helped desensitize me a bit to cat dander.

Either that, or my bengal is more "hypoallergenic" than most other cats, because I rub my face and my arms all over him sometimes and haven't gotten hives once. I do occasionally get a stuffy nose when he decides to climb in bed with me at night, but it's always gone by morning. Also remember, Hyper means "More" and Hypo means "Less", so hypoallergenic doesn't mean "Not causing allergies", but it means "Less likely to cause allergies".

Anyways, that probably wasn't any help at all lol but I would say that a trip to the breeder's would probably be your best option to gauge your husband's allergies. Only he can be a realistic judge as to whether or not a bengal would be a good fit for him long-term.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2017 4:41 am 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:49 am
Posts: 9
Thank you ALL so much for the helpful feedback. I feel like the some of the breeders I have spoken too tend to "play down" the Bengal naughtiness. Although, the one we are visiting next month "Allure Bengals" has told me up front that they will explore kitchen cabinets and drawers and to lock them if I don't want them accessible. I was pleased with her honesty.

We are very thoughtfully considering ALL aspects of potentially owning one of these beautiful and mischievous cats including on-going costs, their energy level and channeling that in a positive way. I have already begun brainstorming ways to Bengal-proof our home (eg: putting safety locks on our oven control knobs) so that I can have an exhaustive list that I can run by you all if the time comes to prepare our home. Has anyone tried using museum gel or earthquake gel with any success?

Thankully I believe we are a little more prepared than some owners from the get-go since we have a Bengal-esque 2-year old daughter who is stealthy like a silent ninja and very fast to get into mischief. :D haha.

Will post an update after our visit.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2017 6:52 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
Posts: 8148
Do yourself a huge favor and put anything breakable AWAY and out of sight of a bengal. Yes, many owners find their bengals on top of their kitchen cabinets and many can open them. (Mine has never done this.) I'm just saying this because if one of your precious pieces of china ends up broken into a million pieces, it won't be the kitty's fault. A bengal will explore EVERYTHING. While small children are unable to climb up high, a bengal will do this. You are going to have to change your lifestyle for the cat -- not the other way around. If you want a nice calm kitty who sleeps 20 hours a day, you want a plain domestic cat or a breed that is not so energetic, intelligent or curious. When you choose a bengal, you choose a daily adventure. They are gorgeous kitties, but they are not like your regular cat. They change your life.

Allure's cats are beautiful -- they have a variety of colors (cool pelt, warm pelt), and a snow bengal. They don't have parent information on their website.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2017 9:51 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2017 11:19 pm
Posts: 7
Hi there, I am allergic to cats and chose bengals as I had heard that the chemical structure of bengal hair differs from standard cat hair. There is definitely a difference, as I can play with and even snuggle Charlie, whereas our black moggy causes me to get hives, then my eyes swell and fill with jelly. Charlie only had a slight affect on me when he decided to lie on my chest and rest his head on my chin for hours when I was really poorly. It was worth it though! Regarding stealing, oooh they love shiny, interesting things and Charlie's place to store them is under our dining room table! It makes it easy to find things, but it looks like an aladin's cave! Knocking things off tables and shelves is a big issue with us. Charlie does this regularly for attention and even turns on the touch lamps with his nose to wake us up. He doesn't open cupboards, but if you leave them open, he is in there!


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 3:54 am 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:49 am
Posts: 9
Update on visiting a Cattery...

Sadly, our scheduled appointment got canceled because a new litter had been born just 4 days prior and the breeder didn't want to potentially exposed the new litter to any illnesses.

That being said, I didn't bother rescheduling because she doesn't vaccinate her kittens or get her Queens and Studs scanned...
We plan on visiting Bengaland Bengal Cats Cattery and possibly Jungle Trax in June. Until then we are working hard to bring our home renovations to a close so that our home will be a safer place for a curious kitten if we decide to move forward. Will update in a few months.

Thank you all for great advice, insight, and continued support.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:19 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
Posts: 8148
I'm so sorry your appointment got canceled. Bengaland and Jungletrax are great breeders. A ton of Supreme Grand Champions. You may have to pay a little bit more through them.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2017 10:16 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:49 am
Posts: 9
So,

I found a local lady who is a breeder of Bengals...I WOULD NEVER consider purchasing from her because of her practices (or lack thereof) but she was kind enough to welcome us into her home so my husband could see how his allergies are. Unfortunately the trip was inconclusive. We could only stay for 30 minutes because there were antiques ALL OVER THE HOUSE and antique shot guns under the couches. We brought our 4 and 2 year old...so you can imagine how that trip went. :) Also she was a very heavy smoker and the smoke in the house was very irritating to me so I can imagine it affected my husband as well. He had no reactions while we were there (which is hopeful) and had very very minor nasal congestion and runny nose after leaving.

Hoping to connect with another owner (who vacuums weekly and whose Bengal loves to shower...which would be a similar future circumstance) within driving distance to see how things go.

Will update soon.

Thanks for continued support. This is a wonderful community!

Mrssos3


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