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Welcome, Crazy Cat People!
Bengal cats can make amazing pets, a lot of people are wary of Bengals due to their wild nature but are Bengals a good choice of pet for a first-time owner?
I did some research and used my knowledge of this breed to answer your questions.
Bengals can be a good cat for a first-time owner, but there are some things you may need to consider. Bengals have lots of energy, they can be very vocal and they can be a very attention-seeking breed. If you have the time and dedication to take on board a Bengal, they can make a great family pet.
It is about making sure that this breed is right for you and your family so later in this post we look into their personalities in a little more detail such as what you need to know before taking on board a Bengal cat and some recommended products to keep your cat happy!
So keep reading to learn more, lets get into this!
Cat Products I recommend
Are Bengal Cats Good for Beginners?
This is a very hard question to answer not just because every cat is different but also because every human is different and we all have different circumstances.
The one important thing is making sure you choose the right cat for you so I would urge you to take your time with this, there is no rush. Take on board as much information about this breed as possible to help you make the right choice.
If this is your first time reading one of my blog posts then please feel free to take a look around my site I have written lots of articles on the Bengals but also about many other breeds and my library of information is growing every day. I hope the information I provide helps you make the right decision.
I will also be linking to some other useful articles throughout this post but don’t worry the links will open in another window so you can come back to this post.
The last thing we need is more cats that are given back to cat shelters. According to the humane society of the united states, 6-8 Million cats enter a shelter in the US every year and of the 3 million cats and dogs euthanised in shelters every year, 80% of them are healthy!
Very sad statistics, so it’s more important than ever to make the right choice when it comes to your pet!
As a beginner and a first-time cat owner, one thing to keep in mind is the cost of the pet. Take a look at this article that I made that goes into how much a cat costs, this article looks at everything. The monthly cost and also the start-up costs of taking on board a cat.
I mean did you realise that the average cost of caring for a Bengal per month is around $79? If you decide to get two cats then it may cost you even more.
Is this affordable for you?
You may also be wondering about the personality of a Bengal cat which in the next section we will look at in more detail but generally, Bengal cats are very friendly. There is a common misconception based on their wild looks that they may be aggressive.
The Bengal was only recently domesticated in the 1970s and they are a Hybrid breed mix between a domesticated cat and a snow leopard according to Wikipedia. Some people assume they may be violent cats but it couldn’t be further from the truth.
Like any other cat as long as they are socialised well from a young age and they are trained well then yes they can make a good pet for a first-time owner!
What Should I know before getting a Bengal Cat?
As I said earlier in this post there are some careful considerations when deciding if a Bengal cat is the right breed for you.
If you feel that you are okay with some of their personality traits then they can make great pets for beginners. So here are some key points that you may need to consider.
Bengals are more territorial than some breeds
It is a well-known fact that Bengals tend to be more territorial than more docile breeds. I am not exactly sure why this is but what we do know is that the snow leopard is also very territorial and the Bengal originates from this species.
Territorial aggression can show up in several ways and it may be perceived as aggression.
That’s why if you have more than one cat in the home they need to have plenty of space they can claim as their own to prevent this from happening. Cats like to mark their territory with their scent and with the Bengal being more territorial than other breeds there may be instances of catfights.
There are some steps you can take to reduce this behaviour and one of them is making sure you provide an environment with lots of vertical space and by that, I mean wall mounted cat furniture and hiding places around the home. Not only is cat furniture important for cats but it can be visually appealing for humans too!
You ideally want a complete set, this one on Amazon not only contains 2 cat houses, 4 cat shelves and 2 ladders but it also has a wall-mounted scratching post too!
You also want to make sure if you have two cats that you have two of everything. Two Cat litter trays, Two scratching posts and Two feeding stations, should prevent any jealousy in your Bengals!
Another little trick you can use to help reduce tension amongst your cats is by using pheromone plugins.
All cats release hormones called pheromones which they release from their scent glands located on their cheeks and forehead. These work by imitating the cat’s naturally occurring F3 pheromones, which cats use to mark their territory. They help the cat feel secure and relaxed in the home.
These plugins imitate those hormones in a synthetic form –
Bengal cats can be very vocal
Do you want a quiet cat who doesn’t let you know when they want to feed and when they want to play?
If so then the Bengal cat may not be for you. Bengal cats can be very vocal, they are described as having a distinctive voice which has been described as cooing or chirping.
The below video by Kaja cattery may give you an idea of just how vocal they are!
Bengals cats can be very attention-seeking
They can demand a lot more attention than some other cat breeds. They love affection, play and they like to be the centre of attention.
So if you are looking for a lap cat then think again.
They will meow and purr until you give them the much-needed attention that they need. Don’t get me wrong this shouldn’t be constant but they will let you know when they want to be the centre of attention, so you need to be aware that they may be very needy at times.
Bengal cats have so much energy
They have a lot of energy especially when they are young so you need to sit down and think about whether their energy levels match what you and your family are looking for from a cat.
With Bengals being a highly intelligent breed, they need lots of mental and physical stimulation and if you don’t give them the play-time that they require they may begin to act destructively. It’s important to help them burn off that excess energy before it leads to any naughty behaviours.
Ever heard of the cat wheel?
If you have the space in your home then this can help use up some of your cat’s energy and also keep them fit and healthy.
You want lots of toys and you again want lots of vertical space which they can climb up onto.
It may be a good idea to check out a post I wrote called ”13 ways to keep your indoor cat entertained”. There are lots of cool hacks you can use to make sure your Bengal is stimulated even when you are out of the home.
You may also want to let your Bengal cat outdoors to use up some of their energy, please consider the pros and cons of letting your cat outdoors and to find out more about that I made a useful article that looks at alternatives to letting them free roam, check it out here!
Consider getting a companion for your Bengal cat
I would recommend when sharing your life with a Bengal to get two of them from a young age. Due to their extremely high energy levels having two pets around can be a godsend.
They will keep each other company and spend a lot of their day playing with each other which should take the pressure off of you.
Bengals are very sociable animals and can suffer from loneliness if they are left alone all day and this is when you could start to see some destructive behaviour and the last thing you want is to come home to find furniture scratched and your favourite ornaments broken on the floor.
In a post I made called ”Do Bengals need a companion’‘ I did a poll to ask owners if they have one Bengal or more and only 7% of people said they have one Bengal cat.
Bengals cats can also get along well with other pets, 42% of owners also had a dog too.
I don’t want you to think that I am trying to put you off of sharing your life with this super cute breed, I just want you to make the correct decision.
They are very friendly and loving pets and what we must remember is that all cats personalities do differ and a lot can depend on the love that is given to them and also socialisation from a young age.
They can be that affectionate that 74% of people also said that their Bengals sleep in bed with them at night time, How cute!
Key takeaways: Are Bengal cats good for first-time owners?
- Bengals have lots of energy
- They get along well with other cats and dogs and need companionship
- They are more territorial than other pets
- They can be a very friendly breed
- They are very vocal
- They will need a little more playtime so lots of toys and lots of vertical space is important
- Also you may be wondering which sex of Bengal to get, check out my post ”Male vs Female Bengals” to learn more”
As always take care of yourself and your little fur-babies!
Mark (The Crazy Cat Man)