Chausie cat
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Chausie Cat Breed Profile

Est. read time: 8 min.

Don’t panic! The cat you’re looking at is not a wild animal, despite their cougar-like features. The Chausie cat rivals the Savannah and Bengal in terms of “cats that make you do a double take.” 

Chausie cats have quite the history, with roots that stretch as far back as ancient Egypt. This breed of cat is sought out for their exotic looks, but most people end up falling in love with their playful and energetic attitudes. 

To learn more about this unique breed, such as their origin story and what it’s like to live with them, continue reading.

Chausie cat a glance
Personality Energetic, playful, adventurous
Life expectancy 10-15 years
Weight 12-25 lbs
Coat & colors Short; brown or black, ticked tabby
Energy level High
Affection level High
Friendliness High
Shedding level Medium
Required grooming Low

Overview of the Chausie cat

Chausie cat

The Chausie is a long, lean, and limber cat with bounds of energy. They are large-sized cats with spunk that fills them to the brim. They have remarkably long legs that give them a statuesque and elegant look but also help to rocket them around the house at lightning speed. 

Chausies are usually not ideal cats for inexperienced pet parents; they deeply rely on their humans to keep them active and happy. They are bubbly but with a high drive, making them better for experienced cat lovers who have the time and knowledge to properly take care of them.


Chausies are large cats by all definitions. They are tall with long legs, a long neck, and a long body. They can weigh up to 25 pounds when fully mature, with males usually being larger than females. 

These cats range between 12 pounds and 25 pounds, depending on their family history. However big they are in size, the Chausie will easily maintain their weight on their own by staying active. 


This breed of cat is famous for their strong yet slinky appearance. They have a lean, athletic build that boasts the sheer amount of power they contain. They can reach up to 22 inches in length, from their adorable little noses to the end of their tails. 


Chausie cats are short-haired with a plush undercoat and a coarse upper layer. Their fur feels thick and dense when stroked, and they don’t typically shed as much as other cats. 

The Chausie cat can come in a variety of colors, but they typically end up resembling the Abyssinian. The preferred coat color and pattern will be black, brown solid, or tabby. Tabby markings are prevalent in a Chausie’s youth but can disappear as they grow and mature.

Some Chausies will have ticked coats, giving their fur a “salt and pepper” or “sand” appearance that seems a bit darker than it actually is. Around their muzzles, you can expect lighter tan or white coloration.

Life expectancy

Chausie cats typically live 10 to 15 years, though some live longer. They are a relatively healthy breed. With frequent vet visits, proper nutrition, enough exercise to satisfy them, and lots of love and attention, they will happily spend years by your side.

History of the Chausie 

Chausie cat outside in field of flowers

The Chausie breed can be traced back to ancient Egypt when mummified cats that highly resembled the Chausie were found in Egyptian tombs. These cats were likely created by pairings between jungle cats and domestic cats. They were highly regarded for their excellent hunting and survival skills, as well as their laid-back demeanor. 

Their name is even derived from the scientific name for a jungle cat, “Felis Chaus.” If you are looking for an exotic pet, the Chausie might be the closest you can get to one!

This breed of cat, a hybrid between a domestic and jungle cat, has been around for thousands of years. They have thrived independently and as a companion for humans. 

The Chausie today

In the 1990s, breeders in the United States took an interest in the Chausie and wanted to find a way to breed them intentionally. This project set out to create a more ethical way to house a “wild” cat, which took some experimenting. 

At first, this breeding program relied on multiple breeds of domestic cats to try to get the “look” of the Chausie. Breeders working on the Chausie found that Abyssinians bred with Domestic Shorthairs was the way to accomplish their goals and diversify the breed’s genetic makeup

What came of this hybrid was a friendly, affectionate, energetic cat that would surely surprise any house guests the first time they are spotted. 

Chausie cat characteristics

The Chausie’s appearance is what makes this cat so special. They are a large breed that can look downright enormous due to their long, lanky legs. They have an athletic build with a deep chest, high cheekbones, high-set and pointed ears, and gold-colored eyes. 

The tail of a Chausie is actually short in comparison with the rest of the body, but it is thick and muscular, aiding in balance as they bound around the house. Their legs are also extremely muscular, with hind legs that are slightly longer than the front legs, giving them a raised appearance. They are mighty and athletic cats.

Personality and behavior

Chausie cat

If you think that the Chausie would behave like a wild cat, you’d be wrong. While they're incredibly active and energetic, they are also playful, intelligent, even-tempered family cats. They can do well in a family with children or other animals, such as dogs or cats, but they still need to be introduced properly to adjust.

They are cats that really need their humans around, so they won't do well if left alone for long periods of time. This is why having another animal in the house might be beneficial for your Chausie.

Need for attention

This breed needs a lot of attention. They can become bored, sad, and potentially destructive if they are left alone for too long. They are not very independent cats, despite their wild looks. 

The Chausie is highly energetic, and if you don't meet all of their activity needs, they will not be as happy as possible. This cat needs an experienced cat parent who can devote time and effort to giving them what they need. Interactive toys, playing fetch, learning how to walk on a leash, and going on adventures (safely), will help you to meet your Chausie’s needs. 

Caring for a Chausie cat

Chausie cat sitting in grass

Caring for a Chausie is a mixed bag. While they do require a lot of exercise and interaction, their coats are fairly easy to maintain. They can benefit from weekly brushing with a soft slicker brush. You will also want to keep up with trimming their nails and dental cleanings to limit the risk of periodontal disease. 

With ancestors prized by the ancient Egyptians, your Chausie is used to royal treatment. You are going to want to keep their litter box area clean, and using a self-cleaning litter box will make it a lot easier to keep up a fresh bed of litter. Plus, your Chausie will thank you!

Exercise and entertainment

Chausies are active cats that need to be kept entertained in order to be content. They require a lot of brain power to keep them occupied, so be prepared to host game nights almost every night.

Having interactive toys present throughout your house will limit their boredom. You can also work on teaching a Chausie how to walk on a leash and play fetch. These are two activities that your Chausie is guaranteed to enjoy with you.

Health-related issues

While the Chausie is considered a relatively healthy breed, they are thought to have inherited shorter intestinal tracts from their wild relatives. This can develop into inflammatory bowel disease because the shorter tracts can cause a lower tolerance for certain nutrients. 

Chausies are also prone to food allergies, meaning you may have to switch around their diets until you find the right fit. Keeping up with veterinarian appointments can ensure that your cat stays healthy and well-cared for.

Loving a Chausie at home

Welcoming a Chausie into your home will bring you endless entertainment and lots of love. They will also be the talk of the neighborhood based on their gorgeous wild appearance and charming personalities. 

As the human of a Chausie, prepare to be involved. They are adorable felines that need human interaction to feel happy. Make sure you have enough time to be an active pet parent. It’s good to find a cat breed that will match your energy and lifestyle so that you can form a healthy and loving bond.

Know yourself and what you wish to get out of a feline companion before you choose a breed as active and needy as the Chausie cat!


Photo credits: © Wilczakrew / CC-BY-SA-3.0