Cat Breeds from Africa: 2 Domesticated Cat Breeds that Originate from Africa
The African continent is home to many big cat species, but did you know that there are also several domesticated cat breeds from Africa? Both the Abyssinian and Somali cats originate from Africa.
Cat Breeds from Africa
Two of the most common cat breeds from Africa is the Abyssinian and Somali, both from Ethiopia. African cats make loveable companions for adults and active playmates for children. If you don’t mind their hyperactive behavior, you should consider these breeds as a possibility.
The Abyssinian breed traces its beginnings to the northern regions of Ethiopia. It’s unknown whether they share an ancestor with their Asian counterparts or if they were domesticated separately.
These cats are known for their lithe body, blunt wedge-shaped head, large eyes, and ears that sit low on the sides of the head.
Abyssinians are a popular breed due to their attractive appearance and friendly personalities. They enjoy being around people, cuddling on your lap, and playing with you. These affectionate cats get along fine with children and other pets that reside in the household.
Another African breed comes from the Somali region in northern Ethiopia. They are considered the long-lost cousins of Abyssinians as they look similar but have longer fur. These cats also have wild ancestors in Asia and most likely became domesticated at the same time as Asian cats.
The Somali is a solid-colored cat that comes in brown, white, or grey and has a lush, thick coat. The ticked pattern of their fur makes the brown variety look similar to Abyssinians. They have a silver undercoat with darker topcoat hairs, giving them a shimmering appearance.
Somalis are active cats that can be described as hyperactive or “buzzy” due to their playful nature and seemingly endless energy reserves. They love being outside and playing in the open but need to be watched when they’re outdoors.
Somalis are also very intelligent and determined. They quickly learn the boundaries of the house and adjust their behavior accordingly, but try your best to keep them out of rooms with delicate objects such as glass figurines. Somali cat training is not an easy task, and you need to be firm in enforcing rules.
Somalis are great with children and other pets, but they do have a tendency to get overstimulated easily. They can play roughly with you or your kids if they’re not appropriately socialized.