Cheetoh Cat – a glamorous and rare cat breed

The Cheetoh Cat is a cross between the well-known wildcat hybrid, the Bengal cat and an Ocicat (non-wildcat hybrid). This is a relatively large, gentle and wild-looking cat. Bengal cat breeders like the wild look. I have decided that this breed is a ‘once removed wild cat hybrid’ as it contains some wild cat genes but relatively little. Cats 101 say there is no wild blood but this has to be wrong.

Cheetoh Cat
Cheetoh Cat. Video screenshot.
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I have to refer to the ‘parents’. The Bengal cat is a wild cat hybrid, a cross between the Asian Leopard cat and a domestic cat. While the Ocicat is “a three-way hybrid interbreeding a Siamese, an Abyssinian and an American Shorthair to produce a domestic jungle cat”. So, the wild blood in the Cheetoh comes from the Bengal cat side.

RELATED: The Ocicat

Cheetoh cat
Cheetoh cat. Photo: Flickr creative commons.

The Bengal SBT (4th generation) has about 12.5% wild blood so the Cheetoh, on the face of it has little wild blood but that doesn’t stop this cat looking nice and wild while being thoroughly domesticated. Wildcat hybrids have a greater tendency to play fetch as shown in the video.

Note: This is a video from another website which is embedded here. Sometimes they are deleted at source which stops them working on this site. If that has happened, I apologise but I have no control over it.

Cheetoh cat
Cheetoh cat. Photo: Flickr creative commons.

As mentioned, the Cheetoh cat is noted for its nice temperament, intelligence and wild cat appearance. The cat above photographed by ‘pawsforportraits’ demonstrates the traits nicely. His name is aptly, King Louis. He looks regal.

The coat is a spotted tabby cat coat (see cat coats tabby). Their size is bigger than average at about 15lbs + for the males (see domestic cat size). The CFA won’t recognize domestic cats with wild blood so this rare cat is registered with TICA as an experimental breed and with the less well-known cat association, the United Feline Organization (UFO) (recognized in 2004).

Cheetoh kittens
Cheetoh kittens. Photo: Oz Zotic Cats.

As the breeding is quite involved here is a schematic:

Cheetoh schematic
Cheetoh schematic. Image: MikeB

As at 2022, I decided to update this page and refresh it. Below are some more details. The page has been checked over, added-to and republished as at 21 January 2022.


The breed was created in 2003 by Carol Drymon of Wild Haven Exotics Cattery. Her goal, apparently, was to create the most wild-looking domestic cat ever. Through selective breeding, within about 18 months, she had created the Cheetoh.

Wildcat within

The Cheetoh has some wild blood within to put this in layperson’s terms. This comes from the Bengal cats side. It’s a wildcat hybrid once removed if you like. Carol did not introduce new are blood but as this is a hybrid and one of the cats is a wildcat hybrid there is a little wild blood in this cat breed.

The Ocicat is not a wildcat hybrid. It is a fully-domesticate cat created itself through selective breeding.

The distinctive tabby spotted and rosetted pattern comes from the Bengal cats side.


The Cheetoh has inherited some of the Bengal cat character as expected. They like to play in water and have that inherited liveliness and intelligence that we have come to expect from the wildcat hybrids. There are said to be gentle, playful and affectionate. They are described as outgoing and good with people. And I’m told that they get on well with children. Although character is also dependent upon the selective breeding process and how the breeder raises the cat and therefore there will be differences between individuals.


The Cheetoh is not accepted by the major Associations to the best of my knowledge as at 2022. The International Cat Association (TICA) and the Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) do not recognise this breed formally. It is not listed on their website. It is said that the United Feline Organisation, which appears to be a minor cat association, recognises the breed. They don’t seem to have a website and I wonder whether they actually exist. In short, the Cheetoh, didn’t really take off as a new breed. Perhaps people decided that there were already enough wildcat hybrids and wildcat hybrid lookalikes in the cat breed marketplace.


They do resemble the Bengal cat which is to be expected. They are known for their beautiful coats decorated with tabby spots, rosettes or marbling. There are various colour types such as cinnamon with black/brown spots, sienna with black/brown spots and gold spotted or black-spotted smoke.

Hybrid vigour

It is said that the Cheetoh benefits from hybrid vigour in that it is bigger than either of their parents. They weigh between 15-25 pounds on average and are very muscular. In contrast, Ocicats weigh on average around 10 pounds. Although the Bengal cat can be quite large. I’ll presume that its size come from the Bengal cat side of the breeding programme.


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10 thoughts on “Cheetoh Cat – a glamorous and rare cat breed”

  1. This is not a breed of cat. It is an attempt of “kitten mill” breeders to make more money off kittens by declaring them to be a “rare” exotic breed. They will never be accepted as a breed by any reputable cat organizations. The spotted ones looks like a bad Ocicat and the rosetted ones look like bad Bengals. Their large size is a lie. Most cats when hybrid to another breed will produce larger sizes, example 1st generation Ocicat/Aby hybrids are normally bigger. But breeding like to like will bring the size back to a normal domestic size. These supposedly “Cheetoh” breeders live by the rule that “There is a sucker born every minutes”

    • Sonja is completely wrong. before you go throwing out accusations maybe you should visit the places. Not ALL cat breeding is done as a “mill”, in fact, most are not. Also, this IS a registered breed. Both are registered with TICA & Cat Fancier’s Assc. (unless you are going to try & convince everyone that those 2 are NOT reputable cat organizations)? Also maybe you should actually look at some of the cats firsthand before vomiting your opinions of something you have no clue about in fact. Maybe you’re jealous because you can’t afford 1 or because you don’t have the creativity to create something yourself so you must tear down others. I sincerely hope you find a better way to address your issues. Have a blessed day.

  2. need help identifying what breed my kitten is. he has beautiful features and markings. he has Bengal markings his fur is like a rabbit pelt classic marking’s with filling but his fur is kind of a ticked coat. you can tell he isn’t a mix/moggie he has his eyeliner chin straps rosettes on his stomach yes rosettes he is beautiful. I rescued him his coat is changing. on his side is a bulls eye with a filling in the middle. the same down his back its not bloched

    • Hi Sandra,

      His coat reminded me immediately of the famous Bengal cat Sundog:

      I think he is a exceptional random bred marbled tabby cat. Marbled tabby is classic tabby markings. I don’t think he is purebred. It is just that sometimes, rarely, tabby cats have very special markings. I believe this is one such case but I am happy to be corrected.

      Thanks for visiting and sharing. A very impressive looking cat.

  3. Yes a beautiful cat, but give me an ordinary moggie needing a good home any day, rather than an especially bred cat.
    Thousands of ordinary but beautiful cats are being killed every day in Rescue Shelters for lack of homes 🙁

  4. Beautiful cat but I still prefer my Bengal (3rd Generation). My Bengal Kiva has beautiful markings, wonderful soft pelt, is extremely intelligent, playful, inquisitive, learns quickly, watches what we do intently then tries to do it…will watch over & over until she learns to do it, i.e.: Kiva can turn the faucets on & off, she can turn a small fan on & off, she can open every door in our condo from watching us. That includes the large wooden folding doors to the washer/dryer. She is truly an amazing cat!


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