Are Bengal cats good pets? Untamed presents the pros and cons
Bengal cats are among the most popular breeds in the UK because they are playful and extremely clever. These tiny tigers are also absolutely gorgeous, but their wild looks make many people wonder—are Bengal cats good pets?
As descendants of Asian leopard cats, Bengals appear intimidating, but looks can be deceiving. This article will explain what you can expect when you adopt a Bengal, from their personality to care requirements, so you can decide if this breed would be the right fit for your family.
Do Bengal cats make good pets?
I know I wasn’t easy at first, but I love you so much now.
Bengal cats are terrific companions for single people and fantastic family pets.
- Exceptionally intelligent
- Easy to train
- A breeze to care for
Bengal intelligence is unprecedented
Three factors that determine a cat’s intelligence are:
Bengals score exceptionally high in all three categories. They adapt quickly to new situations, are incredibly inquisitive, and boast a fantastic memory. Mini leopards also love to explore and relish the thrill of hunting—and they are good at it!
How trainable are Bengals?
Thanks to their intelligence and remarkable memory, these felines are easy to housetrain and teach tricks. You can teach them to sit, lie down, high-five, or fetch. Keep tiny bits of high-quality snacks to reward your Bengal whenever they behave well, and never forget to praise them.
These smart and energetic felines will enjoy the cognitive stimulation and exercise provided by training. They will also appreciate the quality time they spend with you, as it’s a fantastic bonding opportunity.
A Bengal's energy is a challenge to control
Can we play now?
Bengals tend to behave like kittens their entire life. They are extremely playful and have loads of energy, so they demand a lot of space to jump and run. You may have to make changes to your home to accommodate all that vivaciousness and keep them occupied and entertained. The following can help:
- Cat trees
- Cat wheels
- Plenty of fun toys
- Food puzzles
Instead of sleeping on your lap, Bengals prefer to interact through play, so you should make sure your schedule allows regular playtime with your kitty.
Not a lap cat, but highly affectionate
Bengals are a loving breed and can become strongly attached to their humans. Although they are not the cuddliest pets, these felines are exceptionally loyal and will sleep beside you on your bed (until they decide it's time to wake up and play).
Bengals love kids and are a fantastic company for dogs who like cats. They enjoy the company of other felines once they get used to them. If you wish to have another kitty, it is advisable to adopt cats of similar temperament (if not another Bengal, a Siamese cat would be a good option).
A Bengal's territory is only theirs
Bengals are descendants of highly territorial wild cats, so they are probably the most territorial domesticated cat breed. They like to have their space, which will be marked and protected from intruders. You should introduce them to your family or other pets while they are still kittens.
Give me the attention I deserve, and it’s all going to be fine.
Source: Helena Jankovičová Kováčová
These felines can feel uneasy when a new animal enters their territory, which often results in a fight, but good socialisation and upbringing can prevent problematic behaviour. If you teach them how to behave from an early age and sanction rough play, your Bengal will grow into a fantastic feline companion.
Bengals are easy to take care of
Except for the amount of attention Bengals require, these felines are pretty easy to take care of. You can make your kitty perfectly happy with proper:
Grooming a Bengal
Bengals have short and dense fur, which is pretty easy to maintain. Brushing them once or twice a week is more than enough to remove dead hair and dander. You might need to increase brushing frequency during the shedding season.
Unlike most other cats, Bengals love water and will enjoy taking a bath.
Bengal cat health concerns
Bengals are a healthy breed. Most diseases they’re prone to can be prevented or managed with a healthy, well-balanced diet.
Some of the health niggles to watch out for include:
- Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM)—This disease affects a cat's heart muscle. As the illness progresses, the heart walls become thicker, making blood-pumping harder. Due to the progressive nature of the disease, felines often experience fatal heart failure. Many experts believe it is a hereditary condition that may become worse if a cat suffers from hypertension and/or hyperthyroidism. Other contributing factors include obesity and an inadequate diet that lacks taurine
- Chronic renal failure (CRF)—Age, genetics, other diseases (e.g. amyloidosis), diet, and environment can contribute to this condition. The good news is that if the disease is caught early, with appropriate medication and a strictly controlled diet, your Bengal can live a long and happy life. Common symptoms include:
- Increased urination
- Increased thirst
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
- Poor coat quality
- Patellar luxation—The condition causes a cat’s kneecap to slip out of place. It’s easily noticed because felines usually start limping. The good news is that even serious cases can be successfully treated with surgery. Keeping your Bengal at a healthy weight with a proper diet and exercise routine minimises the risk of patellar luxation
Diet and health are inseparable
Whatever type of cat food you prefer—wet, dry, semi-moist, raw, homemade, or B.A.R.F.—it should consist of high-quality products. A well-balanced meal plan is the only way to ensure your cat's nutritional needs are met. If you drop the ball here, your Bengal may fall victim of:
- Kidney disease
- Urinary infections
- Heart disease
Although my human doesn’t allow me to eat outside, it’s nice to look at those squirrels and daydream.
How to ensure you Bengal gets healthy meals
Being so active and lively, Bengal cats require the right portions of highly nutritious food to get enough energy for their daily shenanigans.
Feeding them the subpar products can negatively affect their energy levels and cause health issues and behavioural problems. Good cat food should contain appropriate quantities of:
- Animal protein—at least 50%
- Animal fat—up to 20%
- Numerous vitamins and minerals
- Carbohydrates—up to 3%
Protein is an essential part of your cat’s diet because it:
- Maintains normal energy levels
- Boosts their muscle tone
- Keeps the skin healthy and the coat luscious
- Ensures healthy organ function
Cats are carnivores, and their organisms are not designed to digest plant-based proteins. In nature, cats eat small animals like slugs, birds, mice, and similar, so their diet should reflect their natural eating habits, which means you need to feed them animal-based protein from lean meat and fish, such as:
Meat is the only source of essential amino acids, such as taurine, which cats need for normal functioning, so a vegan or vegetarian diet isn't appropriate for felines. Your cat shouldn't eat food containing vegetables (such as peas, beans, potatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, broccoli), grains (including corn, sweetcorn, wheat, rice, soya), and carbs in general. These ingredients provide little to no nutritional value to cats and can only cause digestion problems (vomiting or diarrhoea) and food allergies.
Maybe I should have asked for the other tin.
Image (c) Untamed
Cats love the taste and texture of animal fat. Moderate amounts of the nutrient will make even fussy cats who are not huge fans of wet food go wild. Besides being crazy delicious to felines, animal fat is also an excellent source of fatty acids, such as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which cats need for:
- Proper organ function
- Nutrient absorption
- Cell integrity
- Strong immune system
- Healthy skin and fur
Vitamins and minerals
The table below presents all the vitamins and minerals your Bengal cat needs to be healthy:
Vitamin B complex
Cats get all their vitamins and minerals from meat. You should avoid cat food that lists supplements among ingredients because it signals that the meat content is low.
While cats don't need carbs, the tiniest quantities are acceptable, especially if you notice your cat suffers from constipation and needs more fibre. In this case, you can offer them small portions of cooked carrots, green beans, or broccoli.
Keep your Bengal happy and satiated with Untamed
Untamed offers nutritious meals to satisfy your Bengal’s dietary and energy needs.
- High quantities of animal protein—Every Untamed tin contains twice as much protein as other commercial products. We only use high-quality, whole meat, such as chicken breast, chicken liver, tuna steak, shrimp, salmon fillet, and similar, served in paw-licking jelly or gravy. Our single-protein meals (Chocka Chicken and Tuck-in Tuna in Jelly) for sensitive tummies are suitable for felines who struggle with allergies
- Vet-formulated meals—We worked with vets to create meals that fully satisfy your Bengal's dietary needs and respect their natural eating habits regardless of the life stage. Our dishes are suitable for kittens who have started eating solids, full-grown Bengals with high energy levels, and senior cats who have dental problems or have lost a few teeth
- Ethical production—All our packaging is 100% recyclable, we only source ingredients from sustainable and cruelty-free suppliers, and our operations are carbon-neutral
- Incredible taste—Thanks to the gentle steaming process, all the ingredients keep their nutritious value, and the taste remains intact
Even the most sensitive kitties can enjoy Untamed meals.
Image (c) Untamed
Order the Untamed trial pack today!
Get a trial pack of healthy Untamed meals for your Bengal in three simple steps:
- Visit our Try Now page
- Tell us about your cat
- Choose the meal plan and place your order
The goods will arrive in a day with no additional shipping fees. Once your Bengal approves with a soft purr and a cuddle, we can supply you with a fresh batch of your cat's favourite food every month.
Cat parents who switched their tiny tigers to Untamed report the following benefits:
Within a week
After two months
After four months