The Ocicat cat is loved worldwide for its exotic looks, playful nature, and friendly habits. This guide discusses how exactly you should care for an Ocicat since this unique breed has some special characteristics you should look out for. However, before we get into these tips, we will focus a bit on the characteristics and history of this breed.
What is The Ocicat Breed Like?
The Ocicat cat breed is one of the most popular feline breeds out there. Ocicat cats are a wild-looking breed of feline, and it is these wild and exotic looks that attract so many people to this unique breed. However, do not be fooled by their wild looks.
In reality, these cats are incredibly adaptable and friendly. They are not wild cats, which originated in the jungle. They are completely tame and find it easy to live in houses, whether the family living with them is small or large.
This breed weighs an average of 6 to 15 pounds and is not too big, making it easy to handle. They also have a healthy average lifespan and are generally a sturdy breed that is not prone to many health issues. In addition to this, these cats are not too vocal. This means they usually do not meow a lot until and unless they want to tell you something.
Ocicats are also able to befriend little children. So if you have some toddlers in your house and are looking to adopt a cat, the Ocicat cat is a great option! They are friendly, playful, and safe!
What is The Breed’s History?
The history of the Ocicat cat is fascinating. Believe it or not, these cats were bred due to an accident. What transpired was that in 1964, a woman named Virginia Daly wanted to make a cat that had the characteristics of Siamese cats and Abyssinians. To do this, she bred both of these breeds together.
However, she did not achieve the result that she was looking for. In the first batch of kittens that came, all of the cats looked only like Abyssinians. However, the second batch was more successful and surprising. What was surprising was that in this second generation of cats, the cats not only resembled Abyssinians and Siamese but also had spots on them!
These spots were not present in any of the parents, which showed an entirely new breed. Ms. Daly’s daughter thought this little spotted cat was adorable and kept it for herself. She called this cat Tonga and believed that this breed should be called an “Ocicat,” so that’s where the name comes from.
However, you will be surprised to find out that Tonga, the first original Ocicat, was not used for breeding Ocicats. A professional researcher contacted Daly, and then this breeder started professionally breeding Ocicat cats.
Eight Tips for Caring The Ocicat
The Ocicat cat is a unique breed of felines. This is because the unique breeds that were cross-bred to produce this breed have a range of different characteristics, which the Ocicat seems to have adopted. This is why the care of an Ocicat cat involves certain special tips that make it different from the care of other cats.
With our eight tips, you can ensure that your Ocicat cat stays happy, healthy, and fit. These tips are the combined knowledge of experts and Ocicat cat owners that help guarantee your pet’s physical and mental health.
1. Walk Them Regularly
The first and most important thing about the care of the Ocicat cat is taking it out on regular walks. This is because this breed is extremely physically active and energetic. If all of this pent-up energy is not appropriately released and productively, then your Ocicat cat can become lazy or even aggressive.
Walks in the park near you or a special cat park are ideal for this breed. You will love to see your Ocicat cat enjoy itself in the outdoors since this breed loves physical activity. However, are you worried about losing your Ocicat cat? After all, felines are known to wander off far from their owners and return hours later.
Well, with the Ocicat, you do not need to worry about this. This is because you can put Ocicat cats on a leash, just like a dog! Ocicat cats are brilliant and can be very quickly trained. This is why if you adopt a young Ocicat kitten, you should start training it to walk on a leash.
This will help you keep your Ocicat cat on the correct pathway and prevent it from straying too far away while you go with them on your outdoor excursions. If they are appropriately trained, the Ocicat cat is pretty comfortable on a leash, so do not think you will be hurting them with it.
However, you should never tie the leash too tightly or pull it too hard since this could hurt your feline. If you have any problem learning how to handle a cat on a leash, ask your vet to give you a demonstration before you do it yourself.
2. Take Care of Their Cardiac Health
We have all heard of human beings being prone to cardiac diseases. With the Ocicat cat, cardiac diseases can be pretty common too. While they do not have any particular vulnerability to these diseases, the Ocicat cat can still have congenital and acquired heart diseases. Congenital conditions are those that the Ocicat cat has from birth, while acquired diseases come with age.
To ensure that the Ocicat cat does not contract any of these diseases, you should regularly visit your vet. Your vet can easily examine your pet in detail and carry out all necessary tests to diagnose cardiac diseases. If your cat has this cardiac disease, then early treatment can help make it easy to manage and may even end up curing it altogether. If you do not visit your vet too regularly, look out for signs of laziness, difficulty breathing, and lethargy.
All of these could indicate cardiac diseases, which is why closely monitoring your Ocicat’s behavior is extremely necessary. In addition to this, to care for your cat, think about getting cat health insurance as well. This is because getting medical treatment for your cat can be expensive, and cat insurance which covers congenital and acquired diseases can help your cat in times of ill health.
3. Give Them Toys to Play With
One of the best ways to take care of your Ocicat cat is to keep them occupied with a healthy supply of cat toys. You can easily find these toys from any good pet store. However, do ensure that none of these toys pose a choking hazard to your cat. Toys are necessary for Ocicats because this breed is very smart and needs objects to keep it mentally stimulated. Opt for toys that are the play-alone type.
These can include furry balls that your Ocicat cat can chase or toys that make a noise that intrigues your cat. You should opt for these toys because even if you do not have the time to play with your cat, your pet can keep itself happily occupied with them. In addition to these toys, you should also try and play some games with your cat.
You can play with them using laser pointers, feather wands, or furry balls. You can spend some quality time with your cat through these games and give them some mental stimulation. This part is essential for an Ocicat; a cat as intelligent as this breed should not be left without anything to do.
4. Care for Their Fur
The next part of caring for an Ocicat cat is looking after its fur. Unlike their Siamese parent, these cats do not shed too much, so you do not need to worry too much about them shedding and your carpet becoming full of cat hair. The Ocicat cat is what we call a seasonal shedder, which means it sheds more fur in some seasons.
This cat has a dense fur coat, but thankfully, the fur is pretty short. Due to this, you can use a rubber comb to take out knots and do not need to buy very expensive fur grooming products. In addition to regular brushing, if you want your furry Ocicat to look bright and shiny, we have a tip for that too.
If you gently rub your Ocicat cat with a chamois cloth, you can bring out the hidden shine in your cat’s fur. Trust us and try this tip, and then share the results with us. When your Ocicat cat has its coat all rubbed and brushed, it will look fit to go in any top pet show in the state.
5. Feed It At Least Twice a Day
To care for your cat, you should feed it at least twice in one day. The Ocicat cat is highly active and needs food to keep it energized throughout the day. One common way of feeding the Ocicat is to put food in its bowl and let it eat from it throughout the day. However, this way, your Ocicat may overeat and gain a few pounds. This is why it is better to give it two meals per day, consisting mainly of proteins from animals, such as fish, chicken, and even rabbit!
6. Use Treats for Training
The next way to care for your cat is to give it a healthy amount of treats. By this tip, we do not mean that you should only feed your cat treats since too many can be unhealthy. However, treats play an integral role to encourage positive behavior in your Ocicat cats. For instance, the Ocicat cat is extremely easy to train.
So you can teach it to walk on a leash, perform tricks, open doors, etc. To train the Ocicat, you can give them a treat every time they do something you want them to. This kind of reinforcement will encourage the behavior you want to teach the Ocicat cat, making it a well-trained pet.
7. Keep Them Hydrated
The next thing you need to do to take care of your Ocicat cat is to keep it hydrated. While a cat’s diet consists mainly of protein, it also needs water to stay active. The Ocicat breed needs more water than other breeds. This is because the Ocicat is extremely physically active and playful, and to keep active, it needs plenty of water.
One way to incorporate water into their diet is to give them canned food. Another helpful tip is to keep a bowl of clean water for your Ocicat cat with its food bowl. This way, anytime your Ocicat feels even mildly thirsty, it can easily access water and manage its hydration needs. After all, you do not want your cat to be dehydrated since that can lead to laziness and a lack of energy.
8. Wipe Them Down Once in a While
The last thing you need to do to care for the Ocicat cat is to give it a good wipe down at least once a week. Unlike other breeds, the Ocicat cat does not need frequent bathing since it has small fur. The fur does not get dirty too easily, so a bath or wiping down once a week is good. However, if your cat looks especially dirty or soiled, a bath is necessary! After all, even cats need to have good hygiene.
We hope that these tips on caring for an Ocicat cat helped you out. Even though the Ocicat originates from the Siamese and Abyssinian breeds, its characteristics are completely different. These unique cats are extremely lovable animals, and these eight tips will help you care for them like they deserve to be cared for.