Do you want to buy a pet, and you are caught between choosing either Egyptian Mau or Bengal Cat? Well, this is a battle that has been there for years among cat lovers. We can say that both of these cats have various characteristics that make them admirable and preferred by many. However, the main question is which among the two is the best to go for?
Worry no more because you’re in the right place. This detailed article brings you a head-to-head comparison between the two. Honestly, by the end of it, you will have a definite opinion and choice of which you would prefer best as your pet.
Both Egyptian Mau and Bengal Cat are wildcats, with the former having such fascinating cheetah-like looks and the latter resembling a leopard. These cats share some common similarities, but they also have some different traits. Maybe this is what makes it hard to choose between the two.
Herein we will compare their differences and look at any similarities they share. However, herein we majorly guide you to make an informed decision on which among the two pets to add to your family. And so, let the Bengal vs. Egyptian Mau cat battle begin.
The Egyptian Mau
An Egyptian Mau is a well-known pet by many, and it’s the only spotted cat that is naturally bred and domesticated. It is among the fastest housecat to be domesticated, and they can speed up to a speed of up to 48 kilometers per hour. They also have excellent hunting skills and are talkative and playful.
Let’s get into details and learn more about the Egyptian Mau.
The Historical Background of Egyptian Mau
Let’s start with the Egyptian Mau. Historically, it is believed that this breed originated from Egypt. Archeology works around ancient tombs of Egypt have recorded cat remains that looked exactly like the current Egyptian Mau.
Interestingly, this pet is the lone domesticated wild cat that boosts a coating that is naturally spotted. Its linage can be traced way back to Nathalie Troubetskoy, a Russian Princes who first visited the US in 1956. Additionally, the Egyptian Mau was initially recognized as a unique breed in a cat show competition held in 1986. This shows that it’s not a hybrid and dates way back.
Egyptian Mau isa very social cat breed even though they are somehow reserved when interacting with strangers. However, they are known to make perfect companions when happy. Basically, you’ll hear them making exciting noises to show their contentment.
What makes this breed more preferable is its beautiful nature and less maintenance. They are also peaceful creatures that love to interact with children and visitors and have a high immune system.
Every animal has a set lifespan, and as much as we love them, it would be great to know how long one can live. For example, the Egyptian Mau cat records a lifespan of 12 to 15 years.
The Appearance and Size
Egyptian Mau is a long, medium-sized, athletic cat with well-built muscles. The breed is highly distinct from other cats exhibiting salient green eyes and spotted coating. Apart from spotting, its coating is shiny and dense. Most of them are jet black and charcoal-like looking. However, it is essential to note that the coating may also exhibit bronze, smoke-colored, or silver spots colors.
This makes them different from the Bengal, which more often has a reddish coating. Egyptian Mau is as well firm and bold.
To describe them further, they have a triangular-shaped head, and the breed is commonly known for its great dark strips running from head to tail. They feature an M-shaped forehead with the cheeks having mascara lines. The ears are medium to large sized.
Best Temperaments for Egyptian Mau
Before deciding which among these cats you want to take home, it is vital to know which temperaments suit each of them. You don’t want your cat running away within the first few days. So typically, it’s one of the crucial factors to consider when buying a pet.
Egyptian Mau is known to be friendly and very loyal. They love places with warm weather and more often are seen enjoying sunspots. They also love to bask on high perches where they can survey the rest of the surrounding environment from their place of comfort.
They like to climb and are genuinely excellent climbers. Therefore, you need to expose them to an environment with climbable things, for instance, trees, or they will do it in every appliance you have in the house.
What is more, they are very intelligent, and they get along so well with children. Therefore, if you have kids in your home, they will likely enjoy the company with this breed. Egyptian Mau is as well very friendly with other pets.
Just like all cats, Egyptian Mau cats shed their fur moderately. If you notice excessive shedding, the coating is probably invested with ticks and needs to be cleaned with disinfectant right away. You can do a weekly combing for normal shedding to remove the excessive loose hair.
Health Problems of Concern?
This is another critical area to consider when comparing these pets.
So far, there are no health problems recorded for this breed. They are considered to be robust and very strong cats. However, it is good to note that the cat might get obese in rare cases if improperly fed. This is not only for Egyptian Mau but also other breeds, and excess weight attracts such illnesses as arthritis, diabetes, and other diseases that may lead to death.
To maintain a positive health condition, you need to ensure your cat has superb nutritious and excellent meaty food considering that all cats are carnivores. In addition, if you purchase it as a tiny kitten, you have to ensure that the cat is fully vaccinated and dewormed as needed.
In the case where you notice any abnormal signs or ill behavior with your cat, don’t hesitate to take them to a vet for a check-up as soon as possible.
Egyptian Mau sheds more as compared to Bengal. However, it is essential to comp them more often to do away with the loose hair. Cleaning them regularly is vital to maintain cleanliness and keep them off bacteria.
Similar to other cats, Egyptian Mau doesn’t weigh so much. In fact, the maximum weight recorded for a normal and healthy cat of this breed is 15 pounds which are typical for male cats. The minimum weight, on the other hand, is 6 pounds.
The Living Needs
Pets need to be taken care of, so the best part about owning this breed is that minimal efforts are required in order to keep it happy and healthy. All you need to do is provide them with ways to charm them up, exercise, and keep their minds active.
Expose them to trees, cat wheels where possible, buy them toys, and self-regulate their nutrition, and you’re good to go. Unfortunately, unlike Bengal cats, Egyptian Mau cats are temperature sensitive, so they are negatively affected by cold weather.
How to Identify Egyptian Mau Cat
You can quickly identify an Egyptian Mau cat from far, and however, when buying from a breeder and you don’t want to go home with the wrong breed, it is essential for you to know what to look for when shopping for a kitten.
- Check on the physical characteristics
This is the first thing that you cannot miss at all. You’ll be looking for a uniformly spotted coat that may be shiny, dense, or medium length. In addition, the spots maybe of different colors, as mentioned above.
- Check the eyes
All Egyptian Mau cats have distinctive green eyes, which are actually almond-shaped and light green. The more vibrant they look, the better the breed.
- Consider the proportion of its body
Check for a medium-sized cat with a graceful body alongside lean and long legs. The body parts should be proportionate to each other and exhibit a long tail.
- Confirm its muscular appearance
There is some clear muscle definition on the Egyptian Mau, even on the little one. These muscles are best defined in the shoulders and neck. This means that they are highly flexible and agile.
Egyptian Mau Fun Facts
- Expectant Egyptian Mau Cat has the most extensive gestation period recorded as compared to all other domestic cats. That’s around Seventy-three days.
- Egyptian Mau can jump as high as six feet straight up. The potent hind legs boost this.
- It is widely accepted that the name Mau was derived from the Middle Eastern word called “mjw,” which means cat, however, there is a fancier breeder theory stating that the name came to be because it sounds exactly like the vocalization of the so breed.
- The Egyptian Mau spots or unique markings occur naturally, and so there are not as a result of human manipulation.
Bengal exhibits an exquisite coating that looks like a leopard. In addition, they are knowledgeable and friendly to the owner’s family. So what more do we have for this cat? Check out.
Unlike Egyptian Mau, this is a newer breed known to originate in the United States. However, there is a controversy that its initial origin is Asia, considering it resembles the Asian Leopard, which is not valid. Instead, it was just created by crossing a domestic cat with Asian Leopard genetics.
However, the cross breeding of this cat started more than one hundred and twenty years ago, and it was not fully established until the 1970s. Jean Sugden Mill bred is the scientist behind this fine breed.
If you mention the name Bengal Cat to a random person, they are likely to describe it as a cat with iconic markings and a jungle cat appearance. Yes! that is what they look like. However, they are extreme and can launch fast since their hide legs give them powerful strides.
They have round ears, which makes them highly reflect their wild ancestors. Bengal cats also have various eye and coat color variations which we will look at in detail in the following sub-sections. This makes it easier for anyone who cannot differentiate between the Egyptian Mau and Bengal yet.
The life expectancy of Bengal cats ranges from 10 to 16 years. However, this will depend on some other relatable factors such as the overall care, health, and their adoption to the environment.
Appearance and Sizes
The Bengal, on the other hand, looks exactly like the Asian leopard and can grow as high as 70cm. It is known for its almond-shaped eyes and muscular legs. The eyes are either blue or green. Like the Egyptian Mau, Bengal also has a wide variety of color coating and patterns. They can either be grey, red, brown, black, clouded, rosette or spotted.
Size-wise, Bengal can either be large-sized or medium-sized yet long, lean, and muscular. One of the best characteristics of Bengal is that they are low shedders as compared to the Egyptian Mau. This makes them hypoallergenic, meaning there is a lower chance for them to cause allergies to their owners.
Best Temperaments for Bengal
This breed is more intelligent, playful, and energetic. This means that you will need to buy them some toys to play with. What is more interesting, they love to frolic around water masses. Most individuals owning this cat breed attest that it is pretty friendly to humans and highly enjoys interacting with them.
How do they achieve this? They have a remarkable ability to form good bonds with their owner’s family, and not only do they become affectionate but also loyal. However, they are dramatic when they don’t receive as much attention and love as they give. They also don’t love to be held or restrained.
Just like Egyptian Mau, they are also brilliant and learn quickly. They are the kind of pet you teach something once, and they easily adapt the lessons. One important thing you need to note before buying this cat is that Bengal is partly a wild cat, and only the fourth generation (T4) are classed to be tame.
Considering that it has wild traits, don’t find it strange when it surprises you with a dead bird, mouse, or mole. However, generally, it is a pretty friendly and lovely pet to have around.
Health Problems of Concern
Considering that Bengal is a relatively new breed, some noted illness commonly attacks them even though in rare cases. One of which include Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy, widely known and abbreviated as HCM.
Once this disease attacks Bengal cats, their heart muscles thicken, and they are unable to pump blood as they should. It’s a life-threatening genetic disease, and so the cat hence has your cat screened every year to keep it off HCM.
Another issue or illness bothering this breed is Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA),an eye disease. This is, however, very rare and commonly happens during breading.
Lastly, it’s essential to check on Hip Dysplasia. This is a dog disease, but recently Bengals have been shown to suffer from it, mainly where your dog pet suffers from it. The major adverse effect of this disease is it causes lameness. Therefore ensure to buy your kitten from a reputable Bengal breeder. In addition, have your cat screened for PRA more often since it can cause blindness.
Considering that they are muscular and long-bodied, the breed may look more extensive than what they actually weigh. However, most of them are medium-sized. For example, males weigh as much as 15lbs, whereas females weigh as low as 6lbs.
Bengals are very active both outdoors and indoors; therefore, they do burn the excess calories continuously, which helps them maintain a healthy and comfortable weight despite how much they grow. Something worth considering is how you feed them. Please provide them with high-quality food with ingredients that are minimally processed. This ensures they maintain a healthy dieting habit that supports carnivore needs.
Bengal Cat Fun Facts
- Even though Bengal Cats result from human manipulation, they record wild DNA.
- Unlike other cat breeds, Bengal is excellent fun of water. Basically, if allowed, the cat can drink directly from the tap. They also love to swim. Most people have attested they follow them into the showers.
- Bengals hunger for attention so they can use their intellect to manipulate the owner to give them the attention they require. As a result, they also learn very fast.
- With Bengal around, you have a little thief. They are known to hide the most essential things to gain the owner’s attention.
- Unlike Egyptian Mau or other cats, Bengals learn how to leash with minimum effort.
What Similarities do Egyptian Mau and Bengal Cat Share?
As there are notable differences between the two cats, as seen above, they also share some similarities.
- Both of these two fancy felines love people; however, their reaction towards them is expressed in different ways.
- The second similarity is that they both love to play even though the Egyptian Mau is more talkative. In addition to this, they love company and attention. Interestingly the Bengal goes to the extent of demanding it.
- They both are very intelligent and thrive on toy plays and interactive games.
- Both are perfect hunters; therefore, keeping small pets such as fish and birds out of reach is recommended. Also, expect them to surprise you with a mouse or a dead bad when out for a hunt.
- They love their own sound, so expect them to be noisy more often. Egyptian Mau is very talkative, though.
To sum it up, let’s have an essential quick reference table that briefly shows the traits and characteristics of these lovely felines.
Egyptian Mau Cat
|Coat||Silky and Short/Medium length||Rough and Short|
|Life Span||12 to 15 Years||12 to 16 Years|
|Weight||3 to 6 kgs||5 to 7 kgs|
|Grooming||Moderate maintenance||Low maintenance|
|Colors||Black, Silver, Smoke, and bronze colored||Red-clouded, Rosetted or ticked, black, brown, and spotted|
|Liter size||2 to 5||2 to 6|
|Temperament||Gentle, Playful, Social, Cheerful, Docile, Curious, Outgoing, Loyal, Territorial, Affectionate||Docile, Affectionate, Gentle, Cheerful, Social, Territorial, Energetic, Curious, Friendly, Territorial, Loyal|
|Domestic or Hybrid||Domestic with spots occurring naturally||Hybrid 4-5th generation accepted as a complete domestic breed|
|Body Size||Moderate||Muscular/ Athletic|
|Lifestyle||Suitable for families, individuals, and children. It suits most lifestyles. They get lonely when left alone and seek attention when neglected.||It suits children, individuals, and families. Highly comfortable with a moderately busy lifestyle. Exhibit undesirable behavior like theft resulting from loneliness and boredom hence fight for attention|
|Relationship with other pets||Gets along perfectly||Might need supervision when around birds and other smaller pets|
|Behavior around strangers||Extremely shy at first but gain confidence after a short while||Most of them are naturally outgoing; however, others are skittish though; after a few minutes of hiding, they come around|
Might be sensitive to Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM)
Egyptian Mau vs. Bengal Cat: Which Is the Best Pet?
Having discussed everything you need to know about the two cat breeds, this is where you make the decision on which you would prefer best. So, on the one hand, you have the sleek, impressive, and elegant Egyptian Mau, while on the other, you have the robust yet powerful Bengal.
Both of them are great pets when treated, maintained, and appropriately domesticated. As much as they have few differences, they also share similar traits, especially in their endless love to play, receive attention, and massive energy.
All that is covered herein, so the main task is for you to decide which one to go for. Both are beautiful and friendly beings to add to the family, and it’s absolutely fine to have them both if you can’t choose between them. All the very best!