California Spangled Cat

The California Spangled Cat was specifically bred to resemble spotted wild cats. Originally bred in the 1980s, these cats have always been rare and have coats that resemble wild cats like ocelots and leopards. They are often referred to as ‘House Leopards.’

California Spangled Cat History:
The California Spangled Cat was introduced to the public in 1986 by way of the famous Neiman Marcus catalog. The cover featured a Spangled, and the cats were advertised for sale for as much as $2500 each. The price included a personal training session with Paul Casey, a Hollywood writer/playwright who was involved in the breeding of the Spangled Cat. Along with celebrated anthropologist Louis Leakey, Casey had begun developing the breed in 1971. They had a common goal: to bring attention to the tragedy of leopard poaching in Africa. Casey had witnessed leopard poaching firsthand after a visit to Tanzania. His novel ‘Open The Coffin’ includes the story of how Casey and Leakey began to breed the California Spangled Cat.

It was Leakey and Casey’s belief that people would be far less likely to desire or purchase leopard furs if their housecats had similar coats. The crossing of Siamese, American Shorthair, Abyssinian and Angora cats eventually led to the birth of the Spangled Cat, which was perfected in 1985, and subsequently featured in the Neiman Marcus catalog the following year. The publicity stunt backfired when animal activists pointed out that the catalog sold several animal fur coats.

The uproar had little effect on cat enthusiast, however, and a large demand for the Spangled actually slowed down the breeding process and eventually put the breed close to endangerment. It is believed that the breed is currently down to a few hundred cats, although several committed breeders are working to save the Spangled.

California Spangled Cat Characteristics:
The California Spangled Cat is an enthusiastic companion and enjoys interactions with humans in general. The Spangled is very athletic and a skilled hunter as well. They are curious, extremely social and quite devoted to their owners.