All About Savannahs

African Serval on Savannahs


A lot of people don't know what in the world is a SERVAL, let alone one of us! We are called 'Savannah cats' and we are what's called a Exotic HYBRID cause we originated from the African Serval who roam the Savannahs. Here's how it all started!

Juma F5 Savannah

There's this really creative and cool lady named Judee Frank. Back in 1986 Judee wondered what would happen if you got an African Serval together with a 'regular' or domestic cat. Wah-La… a savannah was born, in fact she actually named the cat 'Savannah'! Later on another really cool person, Patrick Kelly together with Joyce Sroufe developed the Savannah Breed – since June 2012 we officially became accepted by TICA as a breed standard…. Oh, just so you know, we are good friends with Patrick... We're pretty excited about that – MEOW-HOOO!

You might be wondering right about now… how is a Savannah different from a Serval or a domestic cat. Let me tell ya…. We are the best of BOTH worlds! First of all, we have an AMAZING personality. Some words that describe us might be…. assertive, curious, adventurous, and VERY energetic just to name a few. We don't, however, think much of hanging out on laps so if you're looking for one of THOSE kinds of cats you might want to check out the friendly Persian! Instead of laps we actually prefer head-butts and love to greet our peeps at the door as soon as they get home and then insist on following them from room to room. To put it another way…. think of a dog – that's right, a D-O-G!!! We do all their stuff like walk on leashes, play in the water, fetch, and hang with other dogs. So really, think of us as a dog…. In a cat's body

Savannah Eyes up close

SO, if you're looking for something a LOT different in a cat… something a little on the EXOTIC side who will be with you a lifetime ( we don't take kindly to being re-homed, would you?) and become an amazing part of your life adding that special touch of energy and pizzazz…. Look no further – we are Savannah's…. here us bark (okay, we still meow, but it'd be nice to have the option!)

Did I mention some of the things that make us look so exotic and cool… besides or ROCKIN' black spots??? Well, just like the African Serval we have these awesome ears and if we were bred well, they'll be HUGE and sit right on the top of our heads… straight up!

We have some pretty awesome eyes too, they're called 'hooded' this is what gives us a REALLY exotic look…. almost kinda 'bed roomy'… did I say that out loud? (Shhhh don't tell!) We have these legs that NEVER end and a body a mile long… well, almost! Some people think these features make us look bigger than we actually are, and we ARE big but more tallish then BIG, but we DO get big and HEAVY. Some generations, closer to having a serval as a pop, can weigh as much as 25 or 30 lbs. But in reality, we're really not THAT much bigger and sometimes not bigger at all then a typical house cat.

F1 Savannah Kitten

There's just a couple more things that set us apart from the regular dude cats… we have what is called ocelli. Ocelli are the spots on the back of our ears, again this comes from our ancestor's, the African Serval. This is to trick our predators into thinking they look like EYES from behind and scare them off – We think that is REALLY clever! We also have these crazy long necks, smallish heads with shortish tails, 'tear' drop looking lines down the inside corners of our eyes, and our hind ends sticks up a little higher than the front end. Here's how it plays out...

Now the BIG Question: what does the F1, F2, F3, etc. mean???

  • Savannahs are typically classified as an F1 through an F5
  • F1 has a serval as a parent and a Domestic Savannah as the other parent
  • F2 has a F1 and another Savannah as the parents, so the serval is the grandparent in this case
  • F3 has a a F2 and another Savannah as the parents, so the serval is the great grandparent
  • and so on for the F3 - F5's. After that they are considered "SBT" or "Purebred"
  • Think of is as "F" meaning Feline and the # is the number of generations away from the Serval they are bred. It continues on all the way to F5's. There are a lot of other variables that can make this a bit complicated, like when you start having both sets of parents as Savannahs for several generations… then you start getting into A, B, C and SBT status…. which SBT is what most of the peeps want if they're gonna try to 'show' their savannah. In June 2012, TICA adopted the Savannah breed into shows as the Newest up and coming breed. The other part 'bout "SBT" status, it is the most recognized generation to TICA as "purebred" Savannah, much like your purebred Siamese, Egyptian Mau, American Shorthair or Persian. To achieve "SBT" status, Savannahs must have a proven pedigree of five (5) generations of Savannah to Savannah breeding with no other breed in the mix.

    So there ya have it… Savannah Cat's 101! Consider yourself a graduate by our standards and we'll skip the quiz at the end!

    PRICING, what should you expect to pay to adopt an awesome Exotic Hybrid Savannah Kitten? There is a lot that goes into pricing a kitten. First, it starts with the Generation - since the first generations (the F1's) are very rare and most do not survive past 4 weeks, they will be the most expensive. Then you start dealing with what the intent of your kitten is, a pet or for breeding? When looking at price ranges below, know that the higher prices on the scale are for kittens with breeding rights. You never really know the exact outcome of a kittens looks, size, or personality as they change rapidly in the first year of a kittens life. However, a good breeder has a pretty good idea around 4 weeks old of what to expect. The other factors that determine pricing is the typiness of the Serval traits that are retained in the kitten. These would be the size of the ears, long legs, solid spots, black nose, short tail, ocelli's, large paws, weight or size, the coloring of the serval and much more. So here is a chart that helps give you a range of what to expect when adopting a Savannah kitten (this is a range and sometimes kittens may be priced outside these price ranges):

    Male Savannah Kittens: Female Savannah Kittens:
    F1's: $15,000 - $20,000 F1's: $18,000 - $25,000
    F2's: $4,500 - $9,500 F2's: $4,000 - $10,000
    F3's: $2,500 - $5,500 F3's: $2,000 - $6,000
    F4's: $1,500 - $3,000 F4's: $1,500 - $3,000
    F5's: $1,500 - $6,000 F5's: $1,500 - $3,000
    Purebred: $1,000 - $2,500 Purebred: $1,000 - $2,500

    Be sure and check out the SERVAL page for really cool stuff about the Wild & Domesticated African Serval – these are wonderful and exciting animals!