Bengal Cats Are Safe In California!

A Bengal Cat Happy With the Commission's Decision

I am sure you remember when I shared with you the story of a petition to have hybrid cats, including bengal cats like me, Jacey, and Marley, banned. The humans behind the petition made outrageous claims about us.

They said that no matter what, we would spray inside of homes, and that we are aggressive wild animals that would even attack our larger feline cousins like tigers. They insulted us by calling us “Frankenfelines.” And they said that it is impossible to find homes for hybrid cats like bengal cats, savannahs, and chausies.

The Only Franken-Feline I Know Of
The Only Franken-Feline I Know Of

The human went to a meeting of the California Fish and Game Commission in the summer, when it was held here in San Diego. At the meeting, the vice mayor of a neighboring city spoke to the Commission about how bengal cats and other hybrid cats are not the dangerous creatures we were portrayed to be.

At that meeting, one of the Commission members said that humans who share their homes with hybrid cats were likely going to be very happy when they rendered their decision on whether to move forward with the regulation of bengal cats and other hybrid breeds.

That was good news, but humans who like sharing their homes with hybrid cats did not give up the fight. My human sent a letter to the commission and also signed a petition to the Commission to deny the call to regulate us. And yesterday, our efforts paid off.

A Bengal Cat Happy With the Commission's Decision
A Bengal Cat Happy With the Commission’s Decision

The Fish and Game Commission unanimously decided to follow staff recommendations and to deny the petition to have bengal cats and other hybrid breeds regulated. One of the Commissioners said something that should prevent future attempts to ban us.

“If someone brings us a petition to preclude other people from enjoying something they do, I think it is very incumbent upon them to be loaded with information as to exactly why that does pose — not might pose, not could pose, not maybe will pose — but poses a risk. Anything less than that I regard as just mean.”

He is right. It was very mean to attempt to take bengal cats and other hybrid breeds away from humans who love them. The humans pushing for the ban said that they would exclude any current cats, but we would need papers to prove that we are four or more generations away from our wild ancestors. Jacey, Marley, and I are all rescues who do not have that paperwork.

I am very happy that the human will not have to break the law to make sure Jacey, Marley, and I can live happily with him for a long time to come.

California Bengal Cats Need Your Help

This Sweet Bengal Cat is NOT a "Franken-Feline"

I am sorry to keep coming back to this story, my furiends, but it is very important. I started to talk to you to raise awareness of feline diabetes, but before I became a diabetic cat, I was a bengal cat. And now some humans wish to have bengal cats, and other domestic hybrid breeds, banned in California.

This Sweet Bengal Cat is NOT a "Franken-Feline"
Oppose the Ban on Bengal Cats Like Marley

My furiends, they are relying on lies about us to scare uninformed humans. Their press release announcing the petition for the ban starts by calling us “franken-felines.” Then they go on to say that we are larger than other domestic breeds and that we exhibit aggressiveness, spray more often than other cats, and are at higher risk of abandonment due to us being “wild” cats.

They lie more when they say that we cannot go to shelters because the shelters will not accept us. Someone needs to tell the San Diego Humane Society this, because they took in 30 bengal cats when a breeder died and placed all of them within a week.

The petition for this ban on hybrid domestic breeds is going to be on the agenda of the California Fish and Game Commission’s October 8 meeting. They will not decide whether to adopt or reject a ban at this meeting. Instead, they will decide whether there is a reason to begin the rule making process for a ban on bengals like me, Jacey, and Marley as well as our fellow domestic hybrid breeds of chausies and savannahs.

If they decide to begin the rulemaking process, there will be multiple public sessions and a 45-90 day public comment period.

We Bengal Cats are not "Franken-Felines"
Jacey and I are Not “Franken-Felines”

Furiends, I ask you to take a look at me, Jacey, and Marley and ask yourself if we should be banned.

I know you do not believe we should be banned. We are domestic cats with lots of energy, intelligence, and athleticism and for humans like ours, we make for great companions. Some workers came to the home to paint the balcony railing, and they could not stop talking about how cool they thought we were.

If you agree, please write the commission to let them know you do not believe we domestic hybrid breeds should be banned.

Latest on Bengal Cat Ban Petition

This makes bengal cats and other hybrid breeds happy

Yesterday, the human showed me that he cares very much about me, Jacey and Marley. I already knew this because he spends the additional time needed to care for a diabetic cat. But yesterday, he attended the public meeting of the California Fish and Game Commission. Here, misguided humans presented a petition to ban hybrid cats. These include bengals like me, Jacey, and Marley as well as savannahs and chausies.

It was a very long day for the human. There were many topics that were taken up before the petition was addressed.  Because the day went on for so long, the human was not able to speak to the commission. Instead, the commission asked that all the humans there to speak about the proposed ban on hybrid allow someone to represent the group.

That is what happened and here is the presentation that was given.

This makes bengal cats and other hybrid breeds happy
All Bengal Cats and our Fellow Hybrid Breeds Say This

The human feels that the Commission does not believe it should be in the business of regulating domestic animals. With the commissioner stating that he felt that the presenter would be pleased with their decision, he thinks that the proposed regulations of hybrid cats will go nowhere. That means the bengal cat breed and our fellow hybrid breeds will be allowed to stay in California.

The petitioner also had an opportunity to speak. And he lied about the bengal cat breed and our fellow hybrids.

There are so many lies in this presentation. First, the issue of rabies vaccinations is irrelevant in California. Cats are not required to be vaccinated for rabies. And when I lived with the human in a state where vaccinations were required, we used a regular rabies vaccination and that complied with the law.

The CDC actually says very little about vaccinations for hybrids. It only says that if a hybrid animal is suspected of having rabies, it should be euthanized and tested for the disease.

He claims, with no data, that hybrid cats are abandoned in large numbers by their humans. We are a handful for even a tolerant human, but most humans surrender us to animal shelters instead of abandoning us. And when we get there, we do not stay there for long. The San Diego Humane Society had to take in close to 30 bengal cats when a breeder died. All of my fellow bengal cats were placed within a week.

Finally, he lies again when he says that they do not seek to take away cats from their humans. The petition reads that all hybrid cats who are at least four generations removed from their wild ancestors and who have papers to show this will be grandfathered in.

Well, Jacey, Marley, and I are all rescues. I am sure that many humans who share their home with a bengal cat or two or other hybrids have paperwork to show it. But rescued cats do not. How will the human prove that we are far enough removed from our Asian leopard cat ancestor?

It is good that the Commission seems to have seen through the lies of the petitioners. I hope that I will bring you even better news when I tell you that they have refused to regulate hybrid breeds like bengal cats, savannahs, and chausies.