The origin of the breed
The name Chausie comes from latin for jungle cat - Felis Chaus. It would be logical to assume, that the cat bearing this name is in fact a Felis Chaus and domestic cat (namely Abyssinian) hybrid. With this undertaking american breeders were planning to produce a cat with the appearance, temper and unique pattern of a wild animal, and the behavior of a docile pet. Chausie is shortened to F, where number stands for their relation to a wild precursor. F1 will have a real Felis Chaus parent, thus having 50% of wild blood, F2 should have a wild grandparent, and a wild blood yield of 25%, there are F3, F4 and F5 notations, working on the same principle. There is a problem with breeding chausies however, namely it’s males’ bias towards infertility, which limits the development of this breed almost exclusively to professional catteries.
It took 30 years for these cats to acquire its current name in 1995, even now only TICA has acknowledged them as a breed. Large and shorthair, these felines have a worldwide renown, yet may only be considered somewhat popular in the US, in Europe they are still too few.
A cat with a beastly frame, it’s weight can go as high as awe-striking 35 lbs. Long legs, developed muscles and ideal proportions all fit these cats well. Sexual dimorphism affects this breed, males are greatly larger, yet females are much more active than males.
Head: shaped as an elongated wedge not wide in frontal view, angular cheeks make muzzle look angled slightly upwards. The muzzle itself is neat, slightly elongated and rounded. Nose is long and straight, and the chin is strong and full.
Eyes: Eyes are medium to large in size, with desired colour being gold, amber and yellow, with light green and hazel being tolerated.
Ears: High set, large, wide at base and pointy at the tip.
Neck: While short and thick, it is proportional to the body and looks well on it.
Body: With wide chest and developed rump it manages to be more flexible than it looks.
Legs: Long, strong, and lean.
Paws: Medium to large in size and oval in shape.
Tail: Medium length, straight and flexible.
Coat: Short to very short, shiny and very dense, with a developed undercoat.
Colours: There are only 3 colour options acknowledged for this breed. - Brown Ticked Tabby - each hair has 2 to 3 ticking stripes, numerous tabby-markings are present are present on tail, front legs inner side and hocks. Bright (not white) appears as contour around eyes and as a mark on chin, no other tabby markings are allowed on body proper (except for young animals of 10 months and less). Desirable is golden-red undercoat - Solid black - no tabby markings, rich and evenly coated black. - Black grizzled ticked tabby - 2 to 3 ticking stripes on each hair, alternating between lighter and darker it should only end in black. Ghost tabby is not desired.
Disqualification on shows: Short, as in less than ¾ body length short, tail; white or discoloured spots on coat.
Universal disqualification: Amputated claws, cryptorchidism, deafness
Character traits and features
Chausies are very active and playful cats, also renowned for their loyalty to the owner, despite that they can hardly be called lap cats, being naturally self-reliant they still make good friends with other animals. Born hunters, they can jump far and do it recklessly, so a large house, preferably a high one at that, is rather vital for them to maneuver freely in. With their inherently strong immunity, they are considered healthy and rugged, seldom falling to a disease they live happily an age of 15 and beyond.
Maintenance and care
Rugged individuals, Chausies require little in the way of care. Hair is to be brushed, ears and eyes are to be rinsed when necessary, some grooming would never hurt however. Best care for them will be ample time on fresh air and vast living space, some owners go as far as to take them outdoors on a leash.
When planning a diverse diet for your Chausie pet, note that their bowels will not digest cereals and crops, oftenly present in popular dry feeds. Be cautious, for given the chance, they will likely overeat.
Selection and breeding
Allowed crossings: Abyssinian
Breeds relative to or derived from Chausie: None
Alternative and obsolete breed names