Is My Cat a Bengal?

What are the differences between Bengal cats and other tabby cats?


Tabby Cat vs Bengal Cat
Spot, the Bengal Cat

Some of the most common questions we’re asked are “What are the differences between a tabby cat and a Bengal cat?” and “Is my cat a Bengal cat?” So we thought it might be handy to write our thoughts down on how you can tell whether your cat is a Bengal or a lovely tabby or even some other breed.

Tabby Cat vs Bengal Cat
Hello from Robbie!

Before we go any further, we must point out that in writing this article, we’re not inferring that tabby cats are in any way inferior to Bengal cats – we love all cats in our World, and have our very own ginger tabby cat, Robbie and have had lots of tabby cats in the past, including our gorgeous girl, Friday.

Tabby Cat vs Bengal Cat
Beautiful Friday

They’re going to help us explain the differences between Bengals and tabbies in this article πŸ™‚

My Cat has Spots, so it must be a Bengal, Right?

Not necessarily!

We’llΒ begin by saying that just because a cat has spots or marbling in its fur, this doesn’t automatically mean it’s a Bengal! There are many cats who have this who aren’t Bengals. Regular tabby cats can have spotty or marbled fur too – here’s our very own Robbie cat showing off his spots!

Tabby Cat vs Bengal Cat
Robbie’s spotty tummy


There are other spotty and marbled pedigree breeds too, so let’s look at the spotty ones first: there’s one of the oldest domesticated breeds, the Egyptian Mau, and also the Ocicat, Brown Spotted Manx, Brown Spotted British Shorthair, the Oriental Spotted Tabby and the Brown Asian Spotted Tabby. Here’s some examples:


Tabby Cat vs Bengal Cat
Egyptian Mau
Tabby Cat vs Bengal Cat
Oriental Spotted Tabby
Oriental Spotted Tabby

Turning our attention to marbled breeds, there’s theΒ Marbled British Shorthairs, marbled Manx cats, and marbled Oriental and Asian tabbies. Here’s some photos of these lovely cats:

Tabby Cat vs Bengal Cat
Marbled British Shorthair
Tabby Cat vs Bengal Cat
Marbled Oriental tabby
Tabby Cat vs Bengal Cat
Marbled Manx tabby

On ourΒ Bengal Cat Facts page, weΒ explain lots of different facts about us Bengals which may help you if you want further information about the breed; in this article, we’reΒ going to be more specific about what makes Bengals different to the other cats we’ve mentioned.

Β Spots and Marbles

So in our quest to identify whether your cat is a Bengal or not, let’s first examine what coat patterns are unique to a Bengal cat, whether spotted or marbled… If your cat doesn’t display these features, then they are not a pedigree Bengal.

Tabby Cat vs Bengal Cat
Jessie Rayment’s Fire Dancer


This lovely girl is called Fire Dancer – she belongs to Jessie, who’s a great friend of ours from our Facebook page πŸ™‚

We’re using her gorgeous photo to demonstrate to you how fantastic a Bengal’s spots – or rosettes – can be. Β In the other spotty breeds we mentioned, the spots are round and evenly distributed, though they might vary in size. A Bengal’s spots should be more randomly distributed, with no set patterns, and are usually larger and more distinct than those of other breeds.

A Bengal’s spots are often arrowhead-shaped like you can see on some of Fire’s in the picture and there should be a sharp contrast of colour between the spots and the base coat. Here is where we can talk about rosettes too – which is a unique feature to the Bengal cat (unique when talking about domestic cats, many of our wild cousins have rosettes). A rosette is a spot that has a dark outline with a lighter colour inside, with the inside colour being darker than the base coat. I’m sure you can see why we chose this pic of Fire to illustrate this – her rosetting is superb!

Because a Bengal’s spots are random, the pattern on each side of the cat will be asymmetrical – i.e. one side will be different to the other.

Tabby Cat vs Bengal Cat
Marbled Bengal Cat

In the same way that Spotted Bengal cats have asymmetrical markings – marbled Bengal cats do too. This makes it quite easy if you’re wondering whether or not your marbled fur baby is a Bengal. All the other breeds we mentioned have a symmetrical pattern on both of their sides, but Bengals don’t and this is unique to the Bengal breed.

So take a look at your marbled cat: if the coat is the same on both sides, you don’t have a Bengal! If it’s different, you do!

The Bengal marbling is a unique patterning of horizontally aligned swirls that are not found in the other breeds who tend to have bull’s-eye patterning. The patterns should be in at least three colours – the base colour, pattern outline colour and pattern centre colour (if you read the info on rosetted spots, this should sound familiar to you!).

Each cat has their own unique marbling pattern which often develops over time.

In what other ways are Bengal cats unique?

Alongside the specific markings we’ve discussed for the spotties and the marbled, there are other things that are unique to the Bengal that can help you if you’re still not sure….

One of the most beautifully unique characteristics of the Bengal cat is the glitter in our fur. This is so exquisite, yet so hard to capture in its entirety on film! The golden glow of a Brown Bengal or the pearl dusting effect on a lighter coloured Bengal must be seen in person to be fully appreciated. Here’s a photo of our Uncle BooBoo which shows some of his glow to demonstrate a little of what we mean, though even this great picture doesn’t capture it fully:

Tabby Cat vs Bengal Cat
Uncle BooBoo

There are other aspects of the Bengal fur that are also unique – it’s often said that you can tell a Bengal by touching it when blindfolded. Some find the best way of describing it is that it’s more like a pelt than fur with its feel of satin or silk, being short and plush.

The fur of Β a regular tabby cat is often “ticked” whereas this should not occur in Bengals – ticking is where each strand of hair is broken up into different bands of colours. Our Friday cat has ticked fur – we can see the difference this makes compared to a Bengal:

Tabby Cat vs Bengal Cat
Friday the tabby and Spot the Bengal

As well as the fur and the coat which we’ve focused on a lot, there are other characteristics of the Bengal breed which when you put them all together, makes us a uniquely beautiful cat.

Our bodies are large, lean and muscular with substantial bones. Our back legs are slightly longer than our front ones, reminiscent of our wild ancestors. Our heads are relatively small in relation to our bodies and should be a little longer than wide, with medium to small ears. Our tails are thick and can be ringed, spotted or marbled, but should always have a solid dark coloured tip. Our chins should be light and our whisker pads prominent. Noses are large and broad with slightly puffed nose leather which is often a rich colour.

Tabby Cat vs Bengal Cat
The inquisitive Bengal Cat

Even our voices are different to most other cats and we use them often – you certainly know if you have a Bengal in your house, because we loudly remind you often throughout the day! We can be quite fussy about our litter trays, and will refuse to use them if not clean so will let you know when they’re not up to our standards πŸ™‚ We’ll also remind you when it’s dinner time – you’ll soon stop whatever you’re doing, just to shut us up!

We hope you’ve found this a useful guide for you to identify if you have a true Bengal or not.

528 thoughts on “Is My Cat a Bengal?”

    1. Hi Sandy! I didn’t talk so much about personalities as they are quite subjective and not all things are necessarily unique to the Bengal breed. We are confident and active cats who love to play. We are loyal to our hoomins and usually get on well with dogs and other cats. We can be a bit naughty sometimes (I’m not of course, but my sister is) and we can get bored easily so can be a little destructive. It’s best not to have too much in the way of houseplants or ornaments on your windowsills if you have Bengals πŸ˜†

      1. Hi Spot…my name is Spott too, but with 2 “t”s so as not to be confused with Dick and Jane’s Spot. I think I may have a distant cousin of yours who was abandoned and starving. We have 5 other cats in the house, as well as 6 to 8 ferals outside that we feed since we’ve trapped and fixed them. This little girl just showed up one day at our house and helped herself to the buffet. After she was around for about a week and wasn’t going anywhere, we brought her to the clinic to have her spayed but it turned out she was already spayed. Who would do that to such a precious baby? So she started letting herself inside and is very affectionate, loves the water dripping from tap if we turn it on, is intrigued with me in the shower, and has a wild meow. She was so underweight when she showed up, but a couple months in our house with fabulous food, treats, love and new brothers and sisters to play with has doubled her weight. She is marbled and I see the glitter, but she is not a purebred since her fur, although very rich, thick and soft like a pelt, is ticked. The design of the marbling is asymmetrical so it seems like she has some Bengal blood in her. I’m also not sure if she is only 3rd generation removed since she will out of the blue whack my face if I’m hugging her too much and she wants to get down. 😯 I do hiss at her and she totally chills and starts purring again while I pet her and scratch under her chin. πŸ˜› One way or the other, she is a precious doll who loves to snuggle and lays on her back on my lap while I’m on the toilet with all four paw curled in the air, purring all the time. Couldn’t be happier – all of us!

          1. I have a cat that does that she loves to sit with u and be in the tub all the time I wonder if she’s part Bengal or not she’s marble with a lot of white under her and some spots on her belly

        1. Replying to Spott – sitting on your lap whilst on the toilet is a very definite Bengal trait. My snow bengal does this every single time I make a trip to the toilet! I’ve never come across this in any other breed we have owned in the past (Siamese, Burmese, oriental etc.). Don’t you just love them.

          1. Bengals are a little different to other breeds in many ways πŸ™‚ Glad you love them as much as we do, Linda πŸ™‚

          2. My Vitani is a just the same. I too have had many cat breeds, and Vitani, one of my bengals, is the only cat to jump on my lap while I’m on the throne. They are such fun characters.

          3. Hi Spot,
            My bengal doesn’t join me in the Loo, but my Blue Burmese Fin does- either sitting on my lap or climbing onto my shoulders….

          4. lol πŸ™‚ It’s so lovely that all cats have their individual purrsonalities πŸ™‚ Obviously, we have to generalise when writing an article πŸ™‚

          5. My 10 week old kitty. Her name is KiKi. A friend of mine said she thinks my baby girl is part bangal… She seems to have a lot of the traits you’ve been talking about..

          6. Main Coon’s are very affectionate and attention-seeking as well. He will crawl up on my lap while in the bathroom and want to cuddle. He is a big furry boy and takes up a lot of space.

          7. This is not a Bengal-only trait. I either have some Bengal or Australian Mist blood in me (I was a rescue, so it’s hard to tell), and I definitely do this! But the kitty who came before me was an orange tabby cat and my mom says he did this to her all the time. The first time I did it she got a little weepy because he’s at the rainbow bridge now, and it reminded her of him. I never met him, but mom says he definitely was not a Bengal. She also knows a Maine Coon who does this to his mommy which is hilarious, because he weighs almost 30 lbs!!!

          8. I have a siamese that will only sit on your lap when on the toilet. My bengal is only interested in the running water.

          9. I have a sweet timid cat I first thought was a Maincoon, has several sounds like chirps, clicks from high to very low vocals ranges, when I talk to him he replies & he loves to jump up into my lap while sitting on the toilet. He was a stray kitten I rescued on a freezing January day. My vet said he was only 5 weeks old & another night he wouldn’t he had made it. He grew very fast & within 5 months he was 2 1/2 ft long (nose to tail) he sits, lay downs & fetches on command, he wakes me up in the morning when my alarm goes off. He let’s me know when his litterbox isn’t up to standards. I have had cats before but he is the smartest one by far. Like he truly understands every work I say. He is like a ragamuffin or a ragdoll loves to be held & goes completely limp when I pick him up.loves for me to rub his stomach, loves to be brushed and no issues clipping his front or back nails. I sometimes wonder if he is a reincarnated human! He is semi long hair solid gray, baby blue eyes are now yellow, big thick boned & bushy tail, wide paws with tuffs of hair on his paw pads lion collar. His name is Pookie. My daughter cat is a house guest for a few weeks, Pookie is on alert & a little scared of Gus. Gus is a very tall tabby with Hugh eyes, large nose, marbling & spot with a solid line down his back & tail, ring down his tail ending black tip. Small paws large head & isn’t vocal at all.

          10. When I go to the back of the house Julius comes bounding on his long legs just to see if I’m headed for the bathroom!!! He leaps up onto the sink waiting for me to lift up the stopper and run just exactly the small amount of water he likes. Sometimes I come and use the toilet even when I don’t need to just because he likes me to sit there petting him telling him how pretty he is and what a good boy he is. Julius came to me as a stray. He obviously had been abused. When I reached down to pet him he would jump up and bite hanging onto my bleeding arm. It’s been four years. The bathroom sink is obviously a place he was never abused. It was the first place he trusted me to lovingly pet him. Now of course the sink is his favorite place with sleeping on the pillow next to mine the second. I can carry him around and pet him at all times. He has an unusually rambunctious quality and it doesn’t surprise me the vet said he is a Bengal. Julius is a deep dark rust color and looks quite striking. The most important thing about any cat is his or her personality. I’m happy to say Julius has become a cat with good behavior as well as good looks. (Not perfect behavior since he likes chasing my other cats and is quite jealous when it comes to me)

          11. OMG! My Elsie follows me when i go to the toilet and sits on the windowsill watching when I brush my teeth. She is loving friendly & loyal in a way I only thought dogs were capable. My little Bengal is a beauty and would recommend to anyone wanting a cat

          12. My Garfield resembling orange tabby does this. πŸ™‚ My grey tabby who may have some bengal sits on my shoulder while I am in the bath. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

          13. I had a yellow tabby that laid on my lap when I sat on the toilet every morning before work. At the time we had 2 dogs, 2 puppies, and 3 young cats. His name was Tommy. He wasn’t pushy like the rest, I figured he saw his opportunity for his share of attention and took it. I didn’t mind😺He was a sweet boy, we loved him bunches! That was in the late 70s. Oh yes he was my first house cat, his momma was feral and left a litter in my folks she’d. He came in the house at any 6 weeks. Miss that boy!

        2. I’m wondering if someone would have a look at the kitten I am buying on Sunday? It’s the first Bengal I’ve had and although I’ve been told she is pedigree (comes with her family tree and pedigree document) because she hasn’t been registered to tica or anything like that, I’m concerned she isn’t. So if anyone is available to look at my pictures and let me know your opinions that would be great :-). Thank you x

          1. Hello Bryony!

            Apologies for our late reply, you have probably already got her by now, but you can still email us with pics if you wish πŸ™‚ x

          2. hello Mike,I saw your comment and its really touching.hope they get the love and care from you.I am interested in owning a bengal, I will need to get more information on how to purchase a Bengal.

        3. Bengals do come in ticked fur aswell. My bengal has ticking. The reputable breeder i purchased him from has a few ticked. And they are all TICA registered. Its nit a preferred coat for show bengals but it is a bengal trait aswell.

          *In addition to the rosetted or marble pattern, there are three other factors that come into play when describing the color and pattern of a bengal. “Glitter”, “Patina” and “Ticking.”*

          1. We’re not saying that Bengals can’t have ticked fur, and we’re also not saying you can’t register a ticked Bengal, but ideally they shouldn’t be ticked πŸ™‚

      2. Hi, sorry to interrupt this way but couldn’t find a way of commenting and being able to ask you a question, how can you tell if you have a cat that may be half bengal?

      3. Hello there
        My issue is that i cant tell if my cat Is bingal marbled or no, becouse half of things you mentioned are there and in some other are not, i took her to more than 10 vet clinc, half of them said pure bingal and the other said mixed, so im in big delima, any advice

      4. Hi my tortoiseshell cat had kittens and I know that she is 3/4 bengal as I met the parents. She is being spayed next week but wondered about the markings on one of her kittens (3xginger and 2xblack).
        One ginger kitten has loads of spots on his sides and not identical. He is only 6 weeks if they are bengal markings will they develop more as time goes on?

      1. Ocicats have spots whereas Bengals usually have rosettes, Sandi. Also, They have different shaped heads. If you look both breeds up via Google, it may help you to decide.

    2. I had. Ed. Interested in buying a Bengal I saw the weirdest ad on Craigslist for a “snow Bengal” for 100 dollars. I’ve emailed back and forth with the person including them cursing at me that it was a Bengal. Is there anyway you could tell me. I have pictures of the cat but I’m sure it’s a tabby cat. They showed me pictures of supposedly is the first born kittens that look Bengal which I’m guessing the father was Bengal and mother a tabby.. I’ve never seen a stripped Bengal. I’m curious to see if it’s true that it’s a bengal

    3. Hi I’m Jake and I’m questioning if my cat is a Bengal. He has the pattern of a Manx on one side, but not so much on the other. He has a very distinctive meow that almost sounds like there is not one or kind of a squeak. If there are stuff on the windowsills like plants and things he tends to eat them and knock them down. I have 4 other cats and bowser tends to jump a lot higher than them. I have an extremely high cabinet that my other cats can’t get to only bowser can. He is very curious and all my cats are indoors, yet he tries to get out when the others don’t. Is bowser a Bengal?

    4. Hello! I just want to say that we have a female Bengal who (we think) has a nerve problem from lack of oxygen at birth. So she moves back and forth almost constantly unless she is sleeping. She prefers to stay in our bedroom away from the other cats. She is the sweetest cat I have ever had the pleasure of owning and I never want to live without a Bengal again. However, there is only one of her. She is our nurse when we aren’t feeling well and sleeps with us in the bed when the weather gets colder. Otherwise she sleeps in her little box at the foot of the bed or in a laundry basket. She even has her own body pillow which is much bigger than she is! Love love love this kitty❀️.

    5. Hi, I think my little boy is part Bengal. He has smooth fur no ticks in it but seems to have more marbling than spots. His marbling as different tones of black and grey (probably due to his momma being a black domestic) but he has the beautiful browns in his paws and on his face in some places. He’s 5 months old and is pretty big in size. From front paw to tip of ear he’s about 7 1/2 in tall and from tip of tail to nose he’s about 11 1/2 in. I’ve had Tabby’s before but they never were that big. Also his tail kinda reminds me of a raccoon but the tip is all black. I got him as a 3 week old kitten with no known father. I’ve been told by many people that he looks Savannah or Bengal. His back legs are longer than front and his paws are still big for his size. I don’t mind emailing pictures if you need them. Please help cause I’m confused and don’t want to classify him as the wrong breed.

    6. Hi my name is charlotte and i would like to show you a picture of my cats I do believe one might be a bangle. his marble printing is not the same on either side and he does have stripes. he also has a brother that could possibly be a Egyptian mau. he has stripes and spots but if both are tabbys im fine with that to. but I would like to show you a pic for your opinion.

  1. Hi spot

    I think this was good read
    The photos are great.
    I like Robbie <3

    I think u are a good writer
    You should print a book
    Get it on shops
    Many people but it as made good read & photos are top notch!

  2. What a lovely, informative “brief” Sir Spot (by the way I have decided to “knight” you & shall from now on refer to you as Sir Spot πŸ˜€ ) I do have a question … is it a Bengal trait that you ALWAYS have to have the last word? If Aneksi thinks she should go out & it’s after “curfew” will have an argument about it & we could go on all night because she always answers back & ALWAYS has the last word!!! xxxxx

    1. I like it – Sir Spot! Ha ha! πŸ™‚ Yes, it is only right and proper that us Bengals should have the last word, we need to remind you hoomins who’s boss after all! 😎 πŸ˜‰ xxxx

  3. Love your comment Clare Rosser! πŸ˜†

    As usual Spotty your columns are informative, funny and cute and I soo love the pics that accompany them! Love you and all your brothers and sisters! xxx

  4. Fabulous and informative Spot. You should be writing for Cat World. I love the bit about Glitter in your fur…Daddy does an amazing job of captuirng it too, but you didn’t mention your absolutely stunning eyes, and the differing colours – yours and Lula’s are very different. πŸ™‚

    1. Thank you, Mairi! I didn’t say anything about the eyes as they’re not something you can use easily to tell us apart from other breeds πŸ™‚ After all, Lula gets her lovely blue eyes from the Siamese cats in her ancestry πŸ˜† My mummy agrees with you, though, she is always saying how beautiful our eyes are πŸ˜‰ xxx

  5. Your eyes
    They mesmerize
    Your glitter… πŸ™„

    Can’t think of anything for glitter that isn’t yucky 😳

    Terrific post!

    1. I think I have a Bengal kitten she is nearly a year old she loves coming with me to the toilet and loves drinking water from the tap when we first got her she used to put her paw in her drinking water bowl there is one thing she does that I’m not sure about tho she has her wet meat or biscuits an she tryes to cover her food is that normal for that breed

      1. Hi Amanda! Yes, this is quite normal and natural. When cats in the wild don’t finish the prey they have caught, they use their paws to cover it up with twigs and dirt etc. This is to stop others from stealing it. This is what your girl is doing, though of course there’s no twigs or dirt in your house πŸ™‚

  6. This is an excellent article to especially
    help those of us who are novices to the fabulous world of bengals. I had no idea about the asymmetrical markings until now. It is so wonderful that you take the time to write this information for us. I, like Zoe, think you should publish informational books–oh and children’s books with the BCW family would be fabulous! Starring Spotty Cat and Lula with of course photos by daddy! So many ideas and so little time! xxxxx

    1. Your last sentence hits the nail on the head, Linda! I have so many ideas about different things, but never enough time to do them all! Thanks for your lovely feedback! <3 πŸ˜€ xxxx

  7. Can you get tabby/Bengal mix? I live in turkey and have been adopted by Fred who many say has Bengal markings but I think he’s just a unique tabby but he has very similar markings to the picture of spot that you have.

    1. Yes, you can, Ashleigh! There’s nothing to stop a tabby mating with a Bengal, though if I’m honest, I don’t think it happens quite as often as people think it does πŸ˜‰ But it is entirely feasible! πŸ˜† xx

      1. ❗ THIS is very true – I think many of us *want to think* we have a cat that is part Bengal, but in reality, it’s just a uniquely coloured tabby. I LOVE tabbies and I LOVE Bengals. I just recently adopted a cat who I really did believe might be part Bengal – but it’s just hard to imagine being true. She fits about 50% of the criteria which makes it even harder to tell. Her face is small, her whisker area super prominent, her ears are the right size, her nose is very broad (especially when compares to my three other cats – even the boy cats) her hind legs are longer, her tail is thick with a prominent black tip, she walks like a puma, she hunts like a big cat in the wild and she’s got PATCHES of that sort of unbelievably silky soft fur with Bengal type markings – it’s almost like her fur glows in the light – do you know what I mean? She’s also got these big paws (even though she’s a 7 pound cat) with loooong finger like digits and webbed toes – I thought that was also a Bengal characteristic, but I’m not sure about that.

        BUT, the top part of her is so much more Tabby – while her markings are symmetrical, they are also not very distinguishable. She’s got a few “wannabe’ rosette markings on her, but most of her back is covered in single coloured stripes of some kind. And her meow is the tinniest little squeak peep you’ve ever heard – though she is very demanding for attention. The peeping could be because we adopted her and she is sick and now on antibiotics. But I imagine the meow won’t becoming that of the very vocal Bengal.

        So you really never know…maybe somewhere, somehow, a little Bengal made it’s way into her mix. I try getting a good photograph of her to show it – but it’s impossible to get one that REALLY shows her off – it’s so strange – she’s unbelievably gorgeous in real life, but the photographs just don’t do her justice!!! Truthfully, the last picture you posted of the “Inquisitive Bengal Cat” made my heart skip a beat for a second because that looks JUST LIKE MY MINNAH!!! Only, her side/back area is different. But the face, legs, and chest? Damn near identical!

        Anyway…thank so much for your very brief yet informative posting on the differences between the two breeds!!! I found it very useful! You rock!

          1. Hello Devin! Thanks for your great comments and feedback! I’m pleased you enjoyed our article πŸ˜† Your girl sounds like a real character xx

        1. I have a bona fide Bengal cat who “peeps.” She and our other Bengal came from the same breeder and are related; she never says anything louder than a “peep,” but her cousin is a typical loud Bengal. (We call him “the loudest cat in the world.”)

        2. I am Princess Kiara, and about a year ago I did something that really upset my human parents. I was in heat and every inch of being wanted out of my home. I was going out of my mind. So I waited for the doorbell to ring and I escaped. For two whole days I panicked my parents and angered them terribly. I came home scared, hungry, thirsty and PREGNANT!! I ended up having my biggest litter yet-6 kittens. I should have mentioned my parents are responsible and ethical Bengal Cat breeders. My babies were just like you described your Minnah, who sounds beautiful by the way. So the moral here is there are probably lots more Bengal/Tabby mixes out there roaming the world than you humans think. We cats are very creative when it comes to ways to sneak out the door. Each of my babies from this litter were as precious as all my others from the past and will be as special as all my future kittens as well. Oh, and just to let you know, long webed toes are a Bengsl trait as is keeping the kitten meow. My sister sounds like a itty bitty kitten when she cries and I sound like a huge lion!

  8. Wow, what a wonderful article. Some stuff in there that I knew and loads that I didn’t know!
    Very informative and helpful=D

  9. I loved this! Informative and fun to read. The pictures were gorgeous. Im wondering how common are snowy Bengals like Lula? Also spot, you and Lula are it common for mama Bengals to only have small litters?

    1. Brown Bengals are the most common colour, Rita, snows are more common than blues, silvers or black (melanistic). The size of the litter will depend on Mother Nature and can vary as it can for any breed, so it’s not a particular trait of a Bengal queen to only have small litters. Our mummy, Pandora’s last litter was of 4 beautiful little ones πŸ˜‰ xx

      1. Love the explanation on how to toell the differences between Bengals and Tabbys, but having said that, just letting you know, I love ALL cats, big and small. My Gracie as I think you may remember is a Tuxedo and tomorrow, (Friday) we are going to get our second cat, but unsure of what colour or sex to get. We shall find out when we get to the Animal Refuge. Can’t wait to have another cat around the house. Love your Spotty Cat Blog and all your advice is invaluable. Thanks so much <3 xxx

  10. I think Linda’s book idea is great Spotty! Your mum is very articulate, clever and funny and your daddy is a brilliant photographer. Perfect combo for a book! πŸ˜€

    1. Thanks very much, Em! There are lots of things we have ideas for… hopefully some of them will come to fruition soon! :mrgreen: xxx

  11. Love the explanation on how to toell the differences between Bengals and Tabbys, but having said that, just letting you know, I love ALL cats, big and small. My Gracie as I think you may remember is a Tuxedo and tomorrow, (Friday) we are going to get our second cat, but unsure of what colour or sex to get. We shall find out when we get to the Animal Refuge. Can’t wait to have another cat around the house. Love your Spotty Cat Blog and all your advice is invaluable. Thanks so much <3 xxx

  12. Very nice article,my understanding of TICA standard says the pattern on a bengal should be symetrical with good flow of pattern. Also there are a lot of inky black spotted lovely bengals out there. That would have been nice to include in your article. Thank you for a good job and for sharing!

    1. Thanks, Eileen! πŸ™‚ We are registered and show with GCCF so I was basing the article more on those standards of points, though I think TICA and GCCF don’t vary widely πŸ™‚ xx

    1. Good question, John! A black melanistic bengal will still have bengal markings (spots or marbling) – but you may only be able to see them in the light. If you can’t see any markings, it’s more likely to be a regular black cat πŸ˜‰

  13. I am wondering if my cat is a Bengal. He is the most different cat than I’ve ever had (which is quite a few). Most of my cats have just been cats but four of them have been really special cats in regards to intelligence and relationship. Bootsie Boy is the fourth but he is the most different cat than I’ve ever known. He was a stray in the townhouse complex I live in which is how he got his name. He walked up to my and my neighbor and since his back legs are white I just said, Hey Boots, where’d you come from? 3 of my neighbors were feeding him and I was just petting him when I was outside. One day he met me at my car and walked with me to my door and it was obvious he expected to come in with me and that was that. I tried to change his name once he was my cat but he said no. He is very vocal, changing his tone based on my tone (I guess). If I ask a question that I would expect a Yes (like Are you a hungry boy?) he’ll respond with a meow that sounds positive (yes) or just the opposite if I ask a ? where I’d expect a No. He loves to be high. He often gets as high as he can and then will stretch himself up the wall staring at the ceiling with body language that says I want to climb this wall. He jumps and chases his treats, giving us quite the entertainment, we’ve decided that he thinks he’s a basketball player. He’s the only cat that I’ve ever had that I actually had to put him in Time Out because he is causing trouble. He loves to play Jungle Kitty and Stalk. He gets very annoyed with Poke but I think he secretly likes it. I’ve never played these games with any other cat. I mean HE wants to play them and taught them to me (except maybe Poke). He loves to lay on me vertically on the left (heartbeat?). He “makes love” to our shoes, not literally, but rubbing his head in and through my sandles or shoes. He is the most curious cat I’ve ever had and if a cubboard door gets opened he HAS to go in. Twice he got locked in the coat closet when my roommate got out her coat and didn’t notice him. When he walks he lopes like a Big Cat and swaggers a little bit. I thought he was a tabby (black/gray with a brown nose, lighter brown lips, white chin that disappears into my chest area, then the gray then a white tummy with light brown swirled in there. I just checked him to see if he was the same on both sides and it’s hard to tell (he;s not cooperating very well). He does have a ringed tail with the tip completely black. Visually I would never have thought of him as anything but a tabby (I agree, not shabby either), it’s his personality and other traits that have gotten me thinking. I don’t know how old he is because when I took him to the vet his teeth were completely rotting and when tested, was positive for Feline Aids. whih is the only reason why we can keep up with him at all!!!! He is extremely loving and personable. He has to meet anyone who comes over and will jump up to get a loving. He also is the most claw-iest cat I’ve ever had!!! There’s more too. Visually I think he mostly fits the description, it’s really his behavior. What do you think?

    1. Hello Jadean! It sounds like he shares a lot of the purrrsonality traits of a Bengal. He could well have Bengal genes in him based on what you say. I don’t think he’s a full breed if his back legs are white, but he could be a Bengal cross 😎

      1. I would be surprised if he was a full breed since he was a stray who chose me out of four people, 3 who were feeding him and me who was only petting him. He sure does have most of the traits though. I would think that someone who bought a Bengal wouldn’t just treat him/her like a regular kitty and then to become a stray. In fact I had to stop this reply to chase him around (to entertain him) because he’s needing to get in “trouble”!

  14. Hi Spot!
    Mama was told I am “probably” a Bengal mix, but she wonders. I have the large bones and sturdy, athletic build, and the marvelous silk pelt texture to my fur. My fur glitters but is not ticked (my sister is a ticked tabby) I have the “catitude” and a wild streak. Bark, howl, chatter, and cry, but never meow. But I have a cute little white slippers and a white bib. My tummy looks like a dark chocolate Milky Way when you bite into it. White surrounded by golden brown, ringed in black. Is it fair for mama to keep calling me Bengal mix or should she just say I’m an unknown hybrid? I’m cool, whatever, and very intelligent. I stare in mama’s eyes when I sit on her knee but ate to be cuddled. And I tuck her in at night. Best of all, I can talk! I have about 20 human words in 2 languages.

    1. Hello Karamel! You certainly sound like you have a lot of Bengal genes in you πŸ™‚ I would say your mama is OK to keep calling you a Bengal mix πŸ™‚ xx

  15. Thank you!
    My vet is 100% sure that my Schrodinger is part bengal, she has a good deal of experience with them.
    He is 9 months old and as big as our 15# maine coon mix! But weighs a slight 7.5#.
    He has all the attributes you describe, legs, facial features, fur softer than silk! Fussy about that box, and man does he talk! We thought his tail being 13″ long was unusual, but it begins to make more sense when if you look at how big bengals can get. He has been slightly cross-eyed since birth and is most likely part -mese of some kind. I have never had a kitten with more energy or personality! He loves water and dogs more than anything else there is. He is prone to curtain climbing and long cuddle sessions. As he grows his patterning becomes more prominent and his fur colour changes more gold-ish.
    Our other cats are a marbled maine coon mix, and a b & w lady. We raised both from kittens and never did we have to work as hard to entertain or feed right that very second with them.
    Being part Bengal definitely explains so many many things!
    Thank you for your well laid out easy to understand explanation of the differences.

    -Angela & Schrodinger

  16. Hi again spot I had been wondering about cheetahs markings etc i know he is pedigree but haven’t sent in the papers or blue sheet. He is not talkative and doesn’t really like water but he is hyperactive a nd cunning. And if we play he has to come back and have the last lunge at me. He uses his teeth a lot but he left mummy so early he doesn’t know better yet he is a brown Bengal but seems to be getting a fine almost fleck of colour at the edges of his fir my eyesight is not good but it actually looks pale coloured to me. Thanks to your mummy for all her advise when I was hand rearing him and loves to you a Lula. Cheetahs mummy

  17. Hi There. I’m pretty sure that my cat is a Bengal mix. She has glittery fur, a strong personality, a marbled pattern, really soft fur, and the face of a Bengal. Everyone says that she is really unique. The only thing that is different about her is that she has tufted ears too. I don’t know what she is mixed with because we got her at a humane society but she is really something special. I love my Sophia. Cats have a way of touching your heart in a way you never forget. Love your article. πŸ™‚

  18. I’m wondering about size and bone structure, large thick tail….We got our cat “Suki” a few months ago from a add on Craigslist (free). She is aprox 3 years old, no papers but we are told that she was used as a breader then spaid and now we are her 4TH owners. She has sensery issues, she can’t stand to be picked up, she is terrified of hands, she just shivers and pees all over when you have to pick her up. We only get to pet her tail and I sometimes get to stroke her tummy while she stands by me, she purrs so loud the windows shake. Back to my question…Suki is SMALL she only weighs 8lb. she eats great but she is thin and her tail is long but not what I would call thick. She fits All the other discription markings. The Vet says she is healthy. I’m wondering if anyone has heard that breaders are trying to produce a smaller Bangle or is she just a runt (why would they bread a runt). How much should a female Bangle weigh? Suki has begun to climb in bed with us… and the dog… and the 2 other cats at night. I’m SO happy to report that she is HAPPY in her new home and we are working on her trust issues.

    1. A female bengal on average weighs between 8 and 12 pounds, so she is on the small side but not unusually so. Just like with humans, you will get variations in size and weights between individuals. I’m pleased she’s making progress with you and hope things carry on getting better and better <3 xx

  19. Hi

    I have been offered a “Bengal” But with no papers, I have a couple of photos but I am struggling to tell if its a real Bengal.
    Collection is a 6 hour round trip so can anyone help me?

    Many thanks

    1. We would only recommend that you buy a Bengal from a reputable, registered breeder who will always give you the papers. Are you adopting this cat or buying them? If the former then great, if the latter then I would advise you to not contribute to back yard breeders and find a reputable one instead, you can find one in your area by looking at the TICA website.

  20. I’ve got the same issue as Daniel! I’ve been looking for a bengal kitten for awhile now, and finally found 2 little boys that I think are so adorable in their pictures! Wanting to make sure that I’m not paying an extreme amount of money for a regular house cat, I’m attempting to figure out if they are tabby or bengal but I’m lost! If anyone could possibly help, I can email a couple pictures?

    Thanks so much!!

    1. Feel free to email us photos, Tina, you can use the “contact us” tab. 😎 But as with Daniel, I would never recommend that you buy from a non-registered breeder. A registered breeder may cost a little more, but you know they have conducted proper health screening and will have socialised their kittens. It often costs more in the long run buying from a back yard breeder because of extra vet bills due to ill health. If you are getting them from a registered breeder, they will always give you the papers.

  21. it takes more than a picture. My Bootsie Boy looks like a tabby, but his behavior if very different than any cat I’ve ever had. So I started looking into it. Turns out he’s a bengal mix, but I would never have known by looking at him (without learning what to look for). I doubt I would be able to see it by a pic.

    1. That’s true, Jadean, That’s why we wrote this article as it is very difficult to tell from a pic or two, particularly if we’re talking about Bengal crosses.

    1. OK. You will need to keep her separated for a while and do introductions gradually. If you email us a photo, we might be able to tell if she looks like a Bengal or not, you can use the “contact us” tab and we’ll let you have the email address πŸ™‚

  22. thanks, I found out that my cat is a bengal mix through your website. You are very helpful. Without close inspection, one would never say my cat is a Bengal. Not until they lived with him anyway!

  23. HI i recently got a kitten we were told he was a bengal cross but he has every marking of a marble benga would i be able to send a pic

      1. I have a question. I tried googling this but have found no information. I have a Bengal boy who just turned 1. I thought I had read that bengals chirp and chatter, but mine doesn’t. He just whines more like a kitten. Not really a meow, or a howl but more like a kitten whine. He is fairly good and it isn’t constant (thankfully lol). Will he ever chirp or chatter?

        1. Hello Kerry! Although there are traits that are common to the breed, chattiness being one of those, it doesn’t mean that every Bengal will adhere to those traits! Each cat is an individual, just as hoomins are πŸ˜‰ So your boy may become more chatty as he matures, though he may not too! Either way, it’s all good! πŸ™‚ xx

  24. We got our kitten as advertised as a bengal cat and she shows every sign of a bengal, the vet nurse straight away said she was a tabby but I’ve alot of research and it points to my kitten “khloe” being a bengal.

    Things she does:
    Plays in the bath with water and always drinks from the tap, she cleans her paws with the water and sometimes just sticks her head under the tap and likes to get soaked lol.

    She has climbed a tree which is a height of a at least a 3 to 4 story home and when in the house she always stays up really high.

    She is very active and very particular about her litter box, before she gets out she makes sure her paws are really clean.

    She has silk coat

    Her face is not as big as a tabbys maybe when scrunched but when she walks its sticks out

    She makes lots of different noises

    She has big paws

    Does look like her back legs are larger in size to her front

    Her markings are lines but couple to slightly circle

    Black tip of the tale.

    Please can you help me find out if she is a bengal

    1. Hello Samuel. Did you buy your girl from a registered breeder? That is the safest way to ensure you are getting a true Bengal as they will be able to provide you with pedigree papers to prove it. But if not, please send us a photo via email and we will have a look for you πŸ™‚

  25. I believe our kitty is a mix. Yes, Willow is vocal and fussy about her litter box, food and water. She lets me know when she wants attention. Her fur is silky smooth. She doesn’t have the marbling on her back but she does have the spotted belly and ringed tail, longer back tails, very long and athletic. She’s beautiful with tons of personality. We love her dearly!

  26. hi I was just got two kittens and was wondering if they are bengals? they are about 8-9 weeks, extremely hyper, and have awesome personalities. they do have the spotted bellies but I heard tabby cats can have this too. I would love to post pics of them but im not sure how??

  27. I don’t agree with your statement saying bengal cats won’t ever have ticking in their coats. Most breeders try to breed the ticking out and usually won’t sell their ticked kittens. However ticking is a trait found in most wild and feral cats. Ticking can occure and can’t justify your bengal as being a common domestic “tabby”.

    1. Thanks for your thoughts, but you have completely mis-quoted what I said. I didn’t say that Bengals “won’t ever” have ticking, I said they “shouldn’t” have ticking – quite a big difference! 😯 And I haven’t said anywhere at all that if your Bengal does have ticking, this means they are a “common domestic tabby” ?? I’m all for constructive criticism – but I would rather it’s based on thing I have said, not based on things I haven’t!

  28. Hi, Thanks for a very informative post. My cat, Richard Parker arrived on our doorstep. We tried to find his owners and put up posters, but nobody claimed him. This was two years ago and he’s given us so much pleasure. I always thought he was an exceptionally beautiful tabby until I met someone at a party, who keeps bengals and showed him a photo of Richard P. He told me he was sure I had a Bengal. Richard is a beautiful silver colour with dark spots and stripes. His fur is also silky soft, so it’s impossible not ot cuddle him. It is his behaviour that is most striking though. He has very different vocalisations to my two domestics, his greeting and show of affection is not a nose touch, but a nose lick. His tongue is exceptionally rough – much more so than my domestics – so, while I grin and bear it, I cringe inwardly when Richard sandpapers the tip of my nose. Oh, then there is the water thing. He loves water and has no problem getting soaking wet. He’s also much more agile and acrobatic than my other two – does aerobic somersaults. He also does scary ninja stuff when a strange cat tries to come into our home. He’s very affectionate but I always warn people to back off when the tail starts lashing because if angry, he doesn’t scratch, he leaves deep cuts. He very rarely becomes angry though, he is the most affectionate, sweetest boy ever. His markings are assymetrical, but not very much so. On his one side he has more spots than on the other, which is more stripey than spotty. Having written all of this, I think he does sound like a bengal. Would you agree?

    1. He certainly sounds like he is, Marianne, from the description you have given πŸ™‚ He sounds like a real character πŸ™‚

  29. Thanks for the info. Its all the things I knew mainly, except for the asymetrical trait. Which mine has. The one thing you left out is the flash down the back on some. Mine has what I call her confimation cross. She has the flash and then acrossways near the shoulders is another cross stripe. I have noticed this on many Bengals. Although My Pashie is a cross breed apparently with Russian Blue. She is quite small for a Bengal but walks like a large Tiger. She is very vocal and almost talks to me. She loves climbing, so much so that as a young kitten not having developed her muscular strength she fell and broke her leg. After surgery with metal plates you would never guess to see her now. She is a great little hunter and caught her 1st mouse at 8wks old the 1st week we had her. Since then all sorts have been brought in to me. insect world stands no chance. Anything that moves she catches, I do sometimes manage to rescue them. Birds, mice. frogs, all insects. .She had a sister who was much larger and muscular from the same litter. Her markings were more precise then so I think now she would have displayed a better coat than Pashie who has more white. She got run over as she had a fascination on going into the road. We were all greatly upset and Pashie greived for her for some time . She was spoiled a lot to help her.. She loves a cuddle and is boss of the house. I have had many cats including tortoishell, tabby and ginger toms, but none quite like her, she to me is a one off ,who I love to bits.. I still feel upset when I think of the wasted life because a car driver did not stop at the road end as should have, where we live. He/her MUST have been speeding.. Im just glad that Pashie is a garden girl and afraid of traffic noise.

    1. Thanks for your thoughts, Iris. We’re so sorry about the loss of Pashie’s sister, it must have been a very tough time for all of you πŸ˜₯ It sounds like Pashie has wonderful fun in her garden and she sounds like a real character, as many Bengals are <3

  30. This was very helpful in understanding and loving my tabby, and makes me want to plan for a Bengal eventually. I currently share my house with a Somali and a ginger tabby, both females, and we don’t plan on adding to our family until both pass after a glorious life. They are 4 and 5 respectively, so I have a few years to research. I also admire the Main Coon, so I was wondering how the 2 breeds get along – Bengal and Main Coon? My husband and I are thinking they will be my next companions, in about 10 years. We will likely acquire them simultaneously form different breeders, so that they grow up together from kittenhood.
    Thanks for the great information.

    1. Hello Loraine! Thanks for your feedback and lovely comments. We adore Maine Coons too, we have heard that they make excellent companions for bengal cats πŸ˜†