This is a nice comparison between a melanistic (black) Jungle cat and a melanistic Chausie in a single image. The Chausie is a rare wild cat hybrid and a cross between the jungle cat and the well known Abyssinian. I think, strictly speaking, the cross is usually the Abyssinian but it might on occasion be another domestic cat.
The noticeable thing about these cats is the “ticked” coat. Although it is black it has that typical Abyssinian ticked coat that becomes more apparent when the background colour is black. This is a tabby coat without the tabby markings (pattern). Although the Abyssinian does have some markings but few.
Update: 10th Feb 2013. The original photo of a melanistic jungle cat has been removed because the photographer, Christian Hunold, decided I could no longer show it here despite offers of payment and more. Some people are like that.
The jungle cat in the picture has a very wild cat look. In fact he looks a little like a dog! It is interesting that the male jungle cat has a loud howl that sounds like a bark. Maybe this cat thinks he is a dog. While the Chausie, which I think is an F1 (first fillial or generation from the wild), has a relatively sweet appearance. There is, though, a definite likeness.
The jungle cat is not usually black but black versions of brown wild cats are not uncommon. The best known is the generic “black panther” which is a melanistic leopard, jaguar or less commonly a cougar. Black servals are not uncommon either.
The jungle cat is actually a water loving smallish wildcat weighing about 8-13 pounds with a tawny coat. They are one of the water loving wild cats and use streams to escape dogs etc. They also fish. Their range extends from the Middle East to India and includes Southeast Asia.
The ancient Egyptians apparently trained jungle cats to hunt wildfowl and mummified remains have been found in tombs. The Chausie is a very active and intelligent wild cat hybrid. They are definitely domestic cats but you’ll have to be pretty active yourself to live with one!
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