The many variations of genes lead to a number of other unrecognized appearances among the Bengals. One of these is the long haired Bengal. A Bengal with the long haired gene possesses all the qualities of the standard Bengal but has a longer coat. This difference is due to a recessive gene that both parents must carry in order for it to surface in a litter. Long haired kittens are typically born into a litter along with standard kittens who possess the required short coat.
Cashmere is the name being used for the long hair variety of the Bengal cat, a recognized domestic breed known for their captivating appearance and endearing personalities. Early on Abyssinians, Burmese, Siamese, Maus, and even Himalayans were used to cross with the forest dwelling Asian Leopard cat to produce the first generation (F1). As a result, there have been long hair kittens born from short hair parents since the beginning.
However, since the goal has always been to develop a domestic cat with the exotic look of the leopard, breeders have worked on developing a short, tight pelt, and selectively bred away from the long hair trait. Until recently, breeders were shocked, and even embarrassed to see a long hair kitten pop up in one of their litters! Some even thought that the long hair Bengal kitten was a mixed cat. The truth is, they are pure Bengal cats, just like their short hair brothers though very rare, and certainly something to be cherished and adored!
A Cashmere must still be an excellent representation of the Bengal "standard". Many years have been spent searching for top quality Cashmeres from some of the top Bengal bloodlines in the world to form the foundation of our breeding program. We feel that "mixing" another breed into the gene pool to add the desired characteristics would be an unnecessary step backward. Years of hard work and dedication from hundreds of outstanding breeders have gone into the development of the Bengal as we see him today. Our goal is to contribute by expanding on the coat type within the breed.
A number of Bengal breeders in the USA, England, Germany, and other countries around the world are working to develop the "non standard" long hair variety, and they are currently being shown in the New Breed, New Trait, and Household Pet divisions at cat shows. We are so very proud to be part of the development of the Cashmere.
Those who are truly interested in obtaining a long hair Bengal for a pet or breeding purposes, should contact us to be added to our waiting list. Because this trait is rare, pets are priced at $1500. To protect the integrity of the gene pool for the standard, short hair Bengal, inquiring breeders must have a registered cattery with a program in place for the advancement of the longhair trait. Our priority is to place our kittens into show/breeder homes for it is our hope that, through display and competition, the Cashmere will gain recognition within the cat fancy, and in turn, become accepted as a new trait within the Bengal breed. Then, alas, the Cashmere will become a loving companion, providing years of joy to those who welcome one into their home.
How Is A Cashmere Different From Other Bengals?
Our vision of the Cashmere Bengal is one with dense, semi long hair, no undercoat, and minimal to no shedding. The hair should lay fairly close to the body, be non-matting, and require little to no grooming. We have selected highly glittered breeders that should produce unusually soft, silky offspring, displaying a lustrous sheen that is very inviting to the touch. With each generation, we hope to include an abundant ruff and breeches. And the final touch... a tail that is extremely voluminous and plume like!
Does A Long Hair Bengal Require Grooming?
When people think of cats with long hair they think of shedding and brushing out matted fur. Bengals with long hair are unique because their hair still has the same qualities that their short hair littermates posess. Cashmere's have a silky, semi-long pelt that is not likely to mat and only requires basic grooming like their "standard", shorter haired Bengal brother's and sister's. A light brushing or comb through can help to remove loose hair and dander, which can make their coat look unkept and shabby. Although many bengals minimally shed, an occasional grooming helps to prevent hair from collecting on furniture and causing digestive issues, and it can also be a great way to bond with your kitty.
Gallery Of Cashmeres
Yep, They Come In All colors and Patterns!