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It's Not Nice to Fool Mother Nature

I enjoy writing about personal experiences with my family. I am interested in traveling, any culture, ancestry relationships and animals.

African Serval Cat

African Serval Cat

Savannah Cat Personality and Cost

I came across a website the other day featuring the Savannah cat. This exotic cat is a crossbreed between an African Serval and a domesticated house cat. Savannahs are noted for their tall and slender bodies and their big ears. It is one of the newest breeds in the world and there are just a few breeders worldwide that have achieved their goal of successfully mating a Serval to a domesticated cat.

All Savannah's have an F and a number to denote how many generations they are from their ancestors. The owners of this particular one started in the 1980s to develop this new species.

They advertise them as having a good temperament, a good pet for a family with children (“they get along well with well-behaved children"), so they might not be perfect for all families. They get along well with other pets. They are fun loving, and they have outgoing personalities. They are said to be highly intelligent and learn quickly.

Their sizes range from 15 to 28 pounds and take up to 3 years to reach their full size. Their colors vary slightly but they all have long legs, big ears and wild appearance. The breeders suggest you don’t get them declawed so I can only imagine the size of a scratching post that would be suitable.

The price is a bit mind boggling:

Males: Females:

F1 $7,500-$22,000 F1 $6000-$22,000
F2 $4,500-$16,000 F2 $4,500-$14,000
F3 $3,000-$6,000 F3 $3,500-$5,500
F4 $1200-$3,000 F4 $1,200-$4,500
F5 $950-$6,000F5 $950-$3,000
SBT $950-$6,000 SBT $950-$3,000

Is is Okay to Manipulate Mother Nature?

Something just doesn’t seem right about cross-breeding animals for personal reasons. It’s not a natural change that is caused by Mother Nature, but one that is man-made for the purpose of money or maybe just to see if it can be done.

I wouldn’t consider a cat that size but I also wouldn’t consider paying that price. I would be concerned about small children being scratched or bitten as well. I know there must be a market or they wouldn’t be in business, but it certainly isn’t for everyone.

Don't Mess with This Big kitty!

Savannah- A New Crossbred CatSavannahs, A new Crossbreed Cat from an African Serval and a domesticated cat.

Savannah- A New Crossbred CatSavannahs, A new Crossbreed Cat from an African Serval and a domesticated cat.

Cross Breeding Explanation

A crossbreed or a crossbred typically refers to an animal with purebred parents from two different breeds. The goal is to produce an offspring that shares the traits of both parents. Crossbreeding is used to maintain the health and viability of animals but irresponsible cross breeding can produce an animal of inferior quality.

A hybrid animal is one with the parentage of two separate species, differentiating it from crossbred animals, which have parentage of the same species. Hybrids are usually sterile Sterility is a natural protective mechanism preventing a breeding break down the opportunity for a new species. There are a few exceptions, such as the ligers and tigons. Even though it is rare it could happen over thousands of years where we would see evolutionary change.

The most common animals that are crossbred are cattle, sheep, llamas, dogs and horses. A common ancient crossbreed is a mule, a cross between a female horse and a male donkey or ass. The liger is a hybrid cross between a male lion and female tiger, and there are several other crossbreeds in existence. A dog of a mixed breed is referred to as a mongrel or a mutt, a cat is referred to as a moggy,

Savannah Beautiful Markings

Savannah Beautiful Markings

A Cama is a hybrid between a camel and a llama. They are born via artificial insemination due to the huge difference in sizes of the animals which disallow natural breeding. A Cama usually has the short ears and long tails of a camel.

A Cama is a hybrid between a camel and a llama. They are born via artificial insemination due to the huge difference in sizes of the animals which disallow natural breeding. A Cama usually has the short ears and long tails of a camel.

Hybridization in the Wild Rare

Hybridization in the wild doesn’t happen very often, except for domesticated animals, such as dogs and cats. It is extremely rare for wild animals to interbreed. For instance, in the wild, the Grant's and Thompson's gazelle live together happily in mixed herds. The species are very alike and only experts are able to discern one from the other. Despite this, there are no known instances of this gazelle interbreeding.

The domestic dog will mate indiscriminately with another breed, but wild dog breeds, including wolves, foxes, and coyotes, mate only within their own species.

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In the early 1900s, Indian natives regularly spoke of an animal they knew as the dogs. It was claimed to be a hybrid between the leopard and the tiger. Though there were some large leopards in the area with striping on their abdomens, it was never established that the native claim accounted for the source of this odd coloring.

Throughout Mexico and South America, there is a widespread belief that natural hybrids occur between pumas and jaguars, but animal biologists have been unable to find evidence which would substantiate this.

All crosses between wild and domestic animals are automatically considered to be domesticated. This includes animals like the buffalo (American bison x domestic cattle), Zorses (zebra x horses), zonkeys (zebra x donkeys), the wolf-dog, and the various small wild cat x domestic cat hybrids.

Zebroid A zorse is the result of crossbreeding a horse and a zebra. A zonkey is the result of crossbreeding a donkey with a zebThe Zony is the result of crossbreeding a pony to a zebra. All these three are called zebroids - defined as a cross between

Zebroid A zorse is the result of crossbreeding a horse and a zebra. A zonkey is the result of crossbreeding a donkey with a zebThe Zony is the result of crossbreeding a pony to a zebra. All these three are called zebroids - defined as a cross between

How to Tell the Breed of Your CAT

Crossbreeding Okay or Not?

PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) does not take a stand against cross-breeding as long as pets are owned by kind loving families whom they love and care for properly. They are against puppy mills where pets are animals that are not given necessary attention and just used to gain a profit. They did not address crossbreeding on their website.

I think this is an interesting topic, one I haven't thought about before. Obviously, I am aware of crossbreeding to get a better grade of beef, a faster racehorse, and that dogs and cats don't ask our permission. I don't particularly like crossbreeding like the Savannah cat and I have my own opinion. What is yours?

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.


Robert Sacchi on November 16, 2020:

You're welcme.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on November 16, 2020:

Hi Robert,

I wrote that article a few years ago when I ssw somwthing about the animals and thought they were interesting. Thank you for your comments.

Robert Sacchi on November 16, 2020:

An interesting article about animals I never knew existed.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on August 01, 2012:

Katie, Thank you for sharing your personal experience. I have 2 cats and one of them is large (18 #s). He is the most lovable cat I have ever owned. I appreciate the information you have added to this hub.

Katie on August 01, 2012:

Hi Pamela- Have you ever seen/experienced a Savannah cat? As with any other topic, the Internet is often not a reliable source of info. Check your local area for cat shows and attend one if there are Savannahs in it. This would give you the ability to see for yourself why some folks love this breed. They are a very social, high energy breed. Some compare them to the "siamese breed", but with more energy. LOL- as a long time Siamese lover, these qualities were very appealing to me. I also loved the "look" of my Savannah- she has spots like a "wild cat" and the temperment of a "domestic cat". BTW- Savannahs are considered to be domestic cats. This breed has been accepted by TICA as a Championship Breed. (Feel free to Google TICA and see for yourself).

I own a F2 Savannah (along with 2 rescue cats and a Lab). As a long time pet owner, my Savannah stands out as the most amazing and loving pet I have ever owned in my life. She is very social- she greets strangers to my home, she loves to play with my young children, she follows us all around the house, she shows more interest in our Lab than any cat I have ever owned. LOL- I have never owned a cat who permits my kiddos to push them around in empty boxes or toy shopping carts-- she seems to enjoy this just as much as my kids do!

I noticed many incorrect opinions here- not all Savannah cats are large- size varies. My girl is the same size as our DLH shelter rescue male- about 14 pounds. Savannahs have a very long and lean body- they often appear larger due to this. Typically, F1 generation Savannahs are larger, but size does vary in other generations. Savannah cats use the same cat trees/scratching posts that other cats use. As a long time cat owner, I did not have to "prepare myself" for ownership of my Savannah. I also did not have any worries about my young children being around her- I applied the exact same rules/education to my children re interaction with her as I did with any other pet that we own.

I respectfully, feel that all of you would benefit from going to a cat show and witnessing one of these amazing cats with your own eyes. I'm thinking that many of your opinions may change if you do so.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 07, 2012:

Melissa, I wasn't criticizing the people who purchase the pets as much as the process. It is my opinion that it in not natural to crossbreed different types of animals. Dogs are crossbred with other dogs.

I disagree with you that most cats and dogs aren't good family pets. Some are not, but I would not say most. As a pet lover I have had many through the years. Everyone has a right to their own opinion. I agree that personal responsibility is key to owning any pet. You made some valid points and everyone is entitled to their own opinion. I appreciate yours.

Melissa A Smith from New York on May 07, 2012:

If owning a Savannah cat isn't for you, you're fully entitled to not buy one. What I can't understand is why you would lightly criticize those that do. What exactly is wrong with a hybrid animal? You didn't provide a single real explanation other than "it doesn't feel right" and that they are expensive. Domestic dogs are highly deviated from nature, how can people miss that? And hardly any dogs and cats should be fully trusted with small children. Personal responsibility is a must when obtaining any pet. Please do not allow misconceptions and stigmas criticize alternative pet owners.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on April 01, 2012:

lizo, I appreciate you sharing that information and I'm glad you are enjoying your new pet.

lizo on March 31, 2012:


Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on March 20, 2012:

You make some very valid points and I appreciate your comments.

Dan Harmon from Boise, Idaho on March 19, 2012:

An interesting hub - while I've heard of a liger and of course a mule, most of the other hybrids are news to me.

Such animals are, I think, both good and bad. I don't particularly like the idea of producing "specialty" animals but at the same time they are apparently nearly all sterile - a good thing for too many pet owners as they won't sterilize their pets voluntarily.

Some, such as the mule, have been of great benefit to mankind. Others, though, are simply a show piece; something that no one else has and something that can be quite dangerous if not handled properly. In this regard I am definitely against such breeding.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on January 23, 2012:

Yuki, I am concerned that so many people are not responsible and that's why we see Boa Constrictors and other animals and reptiles thrown away into a new environment. I appreciate your comments and agree that it takes the right owner and environment it you were going to pursue this route.

Yuki on January 22, 2012:

There are a lot of very good reasons why you shouldn't cross a wild and domestic animal together than then send them off to homes where people are expecting a bundle of fluff, just larger than normal.

On the other hand, a prepared owner might get extraordinary enjoyment out of these animals. Were I well prepared and with the appropriate funds, I know I would be able to train and maintain a Savannah cat that was at SBT. Responsibly done, these animals likely make fantastic pets. Irresponsibly, they'll become destructive at best and dangerous at worst. It just takes the right owner and environment.

Marcia Ours on January 11, 2012:

Beautiful cat, but I wouldn't trust it!!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on March 20, 2011:

Mrs. Menagerie, Thanks for your comment

Mrs. Menagerie from The Zoo on March 20, 2011:

Very interesting!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on January 13, 2011:

georgiecarlos, You gave a lot of good reasons why we shouldn't mess with mother nature. Thanks for your comments.

georgiecarlos from Philippines on January 13, 2011:

I agree with you that we shouldn't mess with mother nature. It may seem interesting, even beautiful, but so many things can go wrong. Plus, the fact that they are of different species, there is a risk that these animals may later have some sort of mutation or unnatural "disability"

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on January 07, 2011:

Ben, It is beautiful. I guess they will cross breed for money in nothing else. Thanks for your comment.

Ben Zoltak from Lake Mills, Jefferson County, Wisconsin USA on January 07, 2011:

I can't decide about cross breeding either Pamela. That serval mix sure is gorgeous though! And expensive, whoah!

Beautiful words and pics!


Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on June 09, 2010:

4foodsafety, Yes, pets our part of our families and I am sorry to hear about your loss. Thank you for your comments.

Kelly Kline Burnett from Fontana, WI on June 09, 2010:

Fascinating - wow! Never knew! thank you for the info. Playing God - hmmmm.

My Golden needed a shoulder operation and his brother had cancer - it broke my heart to put both down together. It is comforting to hear I may have made the right decision with your lab having died shortly after the surgery. Pets are a lifestyle change and they are part of the family. Miss my two goldens tremendously.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on March 21, 2010:

Madame X, That is how I felt when I read about this and that's why I wrote this hub. Thanks for your comment.

Madame X on March 21, 2010:

They just can't resist playing God I guess. I always felt that the poor animal that is the result ends up having no place in the world. They're an anomaly, they get to have no mate and no "pups" so to speak. It doesn't seem quite right.

Very interesting hub Pamela :)

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on March 11, 2010:

Jack, Thanks for your comment. I love labs also as they have such a good disposition. I had one I adored but he died having his shoulder operated on. It broke my heart. I have a 16 pound lovable cat now. He comes when I call him just like a dog does. Pets become a part of the family.

TnFlash from Tampa, Florida on March 11, 2010:

Excellent Hub! I was watch the TV show "Cats 101" and saw the Savannah cat for the first time. I liked the traits of the cat. It's not so cat like. As you can tell from my avatar, I'm a BIG fan of Labrador Retrievers. My buddy Latimer has been the best dog I've ever owned. Labs are incredibly smart and easily trained. The downside is the shed a ton of hair continually. I've hear they're breeding Labradoodles (Lab & Poodle mix.) I'm not giving up my Lab! Great Hub!

Support Med. from Michigan on February 24, 2010:

Another GREAT hub! I did not know that much cross-breeding was going on. Man, the power he craves, the trouble the world gets into. The good book says, "My people perish for lack of knowledge." Just because research is done and we "think" we know all of the answers, we really don't know until these 'man-made creatures' are introduced among us, that in itself is more research and experimentation. It reminded me of the profound statement Jeff Goldblum made in the movie 'Jurassic Park'--"...The lack of humility before nature that's being displayed here, staggers me.... genetic didn't require any discipline to attain it...preoccupied with whether or not they COULD, that they didn't stop to think if they SHOULD." And if "discovery" is one of the OTHER reasons people are doing this, especially in the light and intelligence of nature itself, his further quote rings true "...discovery is a violent penetrative act...the rape of the natural world".

This rings so true to my ears, especially after you have given us 'the reason chosen by nature' why these animals do not breed with one another 'naturally' in the first place.!!. Nature, DID NOT select these animals.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 23, 2010:

Vrajavaia, Thank you for your comment.

vrajavala from Port St. Lucie on February 23, 2010:

right. In the long run, it's probably not nice to play with Mother Nature.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 18, 2010:

Mekenzie, I agree. Thanks for your comment.

Susan Ream from Michigan on February 18, 2010:

Pamela, oh my goodness.. I never knew such a cat or the other animals that were crossbred existed. That's Scary! I wouldn't trust a cat that had been crossed with an African wildcat. These animals would not naturally gravitate to each other ... human nature should not be manipulated. Crazy pictures girl! Kinda creepy though. Thanks - Great Article!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 18, 2010:

Tammy, Thank you for your comment. I am a cat lover also.

Tammy Lochmann on February 18, 2010:

This is going to sound inhumane but it someone saw that cat roaming around the neighborhood here it would be shot or something. This sounds very dangerous. I am a cat lover and some of my relatives cats are as big as that one so WHY?

I am absolutely against GMO's this is just another thing for us to be concerned about. Great article, you have raised a very interesting debate.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 17, 2010:

Thank you for your comment.

anglnwu on February 17, 2010:

Your hub raised an interesting question--to crossbreed or not? Personally, I'm with you--nature should not be messed with. Sure, men may think they can outwit nature but nature is never fooled. Your examples of how animals in the wild will not naturally crossbreed makes a powerful statement. Thanks for the very interesting hub.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 17, 2010:

BK, Thank you for your comment. I reacted the same way thinking how beautiful, then should we be doing this?

BkCreative from Brooklyn, New York City on February 17, 2010:

Wow Pamela 99! What a great and informative hub. This is news to me. There was a time we were taught about the balance of nature - and as long as we had it, everything would be fine. Well, no man, is smarter than Mother Nature. Except that is not proving to be true.

The cat is big and beautiful as all are - but I would never buy into this.

Thanks for such a thorough hub with great photos!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 14, 2010:

Very well said. I agree with you completely. Thanks for your comment.

mdlawyer on February 14, 2010:

There is a purpose behind the natural sheme. Shaking that sheme to suit your fancy is unethical and dangerous. And the result is the aggravating confusion and turmoil.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 14, 2010:

Prasetio, This is definitely a lot of cat. I am glad you enjoyed the hub.

prasetio30 from malang-indonesia on February 14, 2010:

I like cat very much. And this cat look big. I never seen about this cat before. Very interesting. thanks for share with us.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 14, 2010:

Roberta, I agree with you. Animals are very sensitive probably much more than we give them credit for. Thank you for your comment.

Roberta99 on February 14, 2010:

I certainly agree with you. Never would I consider having such an animal. I would never trust it. Animals sense your feelings and that would be double trouble.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 13, 2010:

Ehern, Thanks you so much for your comment. My opinion is the same as yours.

ehern33 on February 13, 2010:

I am not sure I would feel safe with one of these near my grand-daughter. I think I will still prefer a normal cat. Great hub here Pam.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 13, 2010:

Tubbs, You are the first person who has told me they have checked out one of these cats. It's nice you are a member of the ASPCA. Thanks for letting me know your opinion.

Korsita Korchenko from Louisiana on February 13, 2010:

Great hub and one that hits home with me. I looked into owning a Savannah 2 years ago and talked with the breeders but I soon realized this was anything but ordinary. To own one of these, you really have to be equipped in your home to handle it, not like a normal kitty kat, not to mention local and state laws that might prevent you from having an exotic animal in your home. I am extremely fond of animals and a current member of the ASPCA. I know owning one of these would be kool but the owner sure better know what they are getting into.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 13, 2010:

Tin-tim, Thanks for your comment/

Priscilla Chan from Normal, Illinois on February 13, 2010:

Very interesting hub! I don't know if I want one of those. I am afraid that it might not be safe. Thanks for the information Pamela.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 13, 2010:

Carolina, I had never heard of most of them either. The mule was the only common one. Thanks for your comment.

carolina muscle from Charlotte, North Carolina on February 12, 2010:

I never heard of some of these crossbred animals... a zorse? what possible benefit is that to nature or man? bizarre. Great hub, very interesting!!!!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 12, 2010:

Sheila and Jordan, Thanks for your comment. I like cats to curl up and be cuddly also.

JORDAN on February 12, 2010:


sheila b. on February 12, 2010:

Gosh, imagine cats that big going wild. And they do! In both city and country, I've met people who bring food to the wild cats. All of your article was interesting. Not something I've been aware of, for the most part. As for the cat, don't we like cats to curl up in our laps?

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 12, 2010:

James and Nancy, Thank you for your comments. I think we all agree with having concern about a cat this size with its genetic background.

nancy_30 from Georgia on February 12, 2010:

I'm with everyone else. Mother nature should not be messed with. Can you imagine how much it would take to feed this new cat. I have two small cats and they eat a lot. I would definitely be afraid to have it around my children.

James A Watkins from Chicago on February 12, 2010:

I can't help but be concerned about this. I had not heard about it before. I fear somebody is going to get hurt. I hope not. Thanks for the information.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 12, 2010:

Patriot, That is the best a laugh of the day! Very clever. Thanks for stopping by.

partisan patriot on February 12, 2010:


I’m all for these experiments; may I suggest they next try to cross breed Al Gore with Arianna Huffington of the Huffington Puffington Post; the off spring would be the first critter that you could shine a flashlight in one ear and the beam of light would come out the other. There simply would be no brain to impede the flow of the beam of light!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 12, 2010:

Coffeesnob, I agree that it is sad. Thanks for our comment.

Lisa, IT is beautiful but I would be a little worried about it being with small children. Thanks for your comment.

Eovery, Yes, dogs are more obedient. Thanks for your comment.

eovery from MIddle of the Boondocks of Iowa on February 12, 2010:

Interesting cat, indeed.

I wonder if its temperament is basically the same as a regular house cat. I think if I wanted an animal that big, I would take a dog. They are much more obedient.

Keep on hubbing!

Lisa from Pennsylvania on February 12, 2010:

The Savannah Cat is extremely beautiful,but I have to agree that it probably would not make a good household pet,especially with children. It is usually best not to mess around with nature.

coffeesnob on February 12, 2010:

It's sad, really that some feel a need to change how something looks to satsify our boredom with life - and life and nature is so rich and vast already.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 12, 2010:

Video and Cari, I agree with you both, obviously. I would like nature take its course and I wouldn't own an animal that was half wild. Even domesticated dogs have been known to suddenly turn on their owners at times. Best to be safe. Thanks for you comments.

Cari Jean from Bismarck, ND on February 12, 2010:

This is a very interesting hub.

I would never want an animal that is half wild and half domesticated in my home. I just wouldn't be able to completely trust that their wild insticts would be completely gone. I would never own a dog that's part wolf for this reason nor a cat that's part African Serval.

Video Express from Boston, MA on February 12, 2010:

Those are some crazy looking animals. Some of them look pretty cool but, I think I would much rather have nature take its course.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 12, 2010:

Hmrjmr, I agree. Thanks for your comment.

Hmrjmr1 from Georgia, USA on February 12, 2010:

Pam _ I'm with you and the crowd on this one, I think messing with Mother Nature just cause you can tends to bring unintended negative consequences more often than not. Good Hub!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 12, 2010:

Hello and RTalloni, I am glad to see your comments reflect my views. You don't know how many failures they might have had or was there pain and suffering. Mother Nature does a fine job of giving us beautiful animals and plants without our interference.

RTalloni on February 12, 2010:

Questioning the process, failed attempts, potentials for pain and suffering, etc. causes one to think as seriously as we should about the issue. The cat is beautiful, life is beautiful, however, what are the answers to the questions that come up?

Hello, hello, from London, UK on February 12, 2010:

I agree with you. I don't think it is right. Also, mostly when they meddled with nature it went wrong. I think, as beautiful this animal is, but what if people start to through it out again, as they do, and it turns wild. After all it is a cat and they are unpredictible when wild. These people who breed them don't care or don't think what they doing.

Thank your for a wonderful hub but scary.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on February 12, 2010:

Tom, I think cats are great pets but this one was over the top for me. Thanks for your comment

Tom Whitworth from Moundsville, WV on February 12, 2010:


I agree with you on the cross breeding issue. I know I wouldn't want a cat that big. Salem blames me for the snow and he takes it out on me. If he were half that size I'd be dead by now.

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