Cats from Kenya

Introduction from Michael

I love to see domestic cats from places other than in the West. It broadens the website and our knowledge. We need to read more about domestic cats in countries in Africa, Asia and South and Central America. Joyce emailed me with pictures and text of two cats she adopted which have been imported from Kenya, Africa. The Sokoke forest is in Kenya and that is where the rare Sokoke cat comes from. The Sokoke is a registered purebred, pedigree cat in the USA. The breed looks somewhat like a wild cat hybrid.

Kenyan cats

Kenyan cats. Photo by Joyce. For me the cat on the right is a black tortoiseshell – lmost all black. The cat on the left looks like a black cat. Click on the picture to see a larger version.

This is what Joyce says about these Kenyan cats.

By Joyce

Hello…I found your blog. I wanted to share my cats with you. They are from Kenya, given to a local person by his cousin, who is an American teacher in Kenya, who brings kittens back to USA when she comes home for a visit. This local person posted on Craigslist that he had them and DIDN’T WANT NOR NEED THEM…well I phoned him and went to rescue them.

Kenyan Cats

Kenyan cats. Photo by Joyce. For me the cat on the right is a black tortoiseshell – almost all black and the cat on the left is a black cat. Click on the picture to see a larger version.

After I got them home, and looked at them I realized they were rare…different than house cats I was used to. I believe them to be a cousin to the Sokoke. They are not Sokoke. I had DNA (UC Davis) done on the male: NO KNOWN BREED…DNA does put them from Kenya but blood line is western Europe and not from the islands like Sokoke from central Kenya. They have web feet, no whisker pouch, thin fur, stiff tail, chirp and they are small.

When they are scared they puddle down…don’t really climb much, strong muscles on these cat – the fore legs – you can’t hold them in they want to go. The male is black and the female is black with bark on her and a slash of orange down her nose. Ee are blessed with 8 week old kittens.


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Cats from Kenya — 11 Comments

  1. I have a beautiful sokoke cat, rescued from a road side vendor in Nairobi, as a very tiny kitten. I was initially unaware that she was a Sokoke and had her spayed as there were a few un neutered Tom’s on our compound.

    I took her to the vet for a health certificate as we were due to leave and wanted to bring her with us to South Africa. It was the vet who recognised her as a Sokoke.

    She has all the traits and markings described bar one,she is very loving and follows my husband and I around demanding we sit so that she may sit on our laps. She is now 9 years old and as demanding and chatty as ever.

  2. Beautiful cats. With their slender faces, almond shaped eyes and high cheekbones, they have a very regal look about them.

    • I thought Joyce’s description of their behaviour and appearance was interesting. They look like fairly regular domestic cats but there appears to be differences. Black cats are feared in Africa so their lives might have been in jeopardy there. The Africans are even more superstitious than we are in the West in respect of black cats. I have that on first hand advice from a lady who I know who is Kenyan.

    • New pictures are coming, my indoor lights are all LED, and the pictures are so dark, so I must corral them and it will take 2 of us to contain them long enough for pictures.

      It’s been over 25 years since I’ve had kittens born in our home, I’ve forgotten, the pleasure of kittens,and the speed of the tiny ones.

      • Thanks for commenting Joyce. Future comments will published automatically. You can upload photos to comments but if it does not work it will be because the image too large. The size can be reduced online (see text below comment box).

  3. Michael i turn nostalgic on “KENYA” akin to you Britishers being nostalgic on “India” although you’ll as colonizers and me as a ordinary Indian origin Kenyan as i was born in Mombasa under British rule !Spent 8 years of my life in that city.Remember having “hedgehogs” as pets in my house and also a pet Siamese cat presented to me by my parents friends, the first cat i ever owned in my life.Sadly, today Kenya is in the headlines more for its religious intolerance than for its beautiful natural wild-life.Strangely the “Sokoke” cat resembles the “Bombay Cat” in the photo

      • Honestly Michael, Kenya could have become the “SINGAPORE” of Africa with its gift of “Natural Resources” and “Wild-life wealth. Just after Independence it was a wealthy country although most businesses were in Indian hands and its currency higher than the Indian rupee.I have seen the rise of Singapore also a former British colony just during a mere 20 years of my shipping career.Bizarrely, never got to see its fabled “Singapore Cat”, the smallest pedigree cat in the World.The World is getting to be a more dangerous place due to religious intolerance as well as natural forest degradation.

        • Yes, Kenya had massive potential. Africa is a great place being badly managed. It is a great shame. The Singapura cat which I meant to be a ‘drain cat’ (feral cat living in the drains) in Singapore never existed in my opinion. It is more likely that the breed has been created in America. Breeders like to create interesting cat breed histories as it makes their cats more marketable. Sarah Hartwell went there and never found one she said.

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