COLORS & PATTERNS
|There are two patterns, first the spotted and the second one is the marbled pattern. The rosetted Bengal is subordinated to the spotted (but more about rosettes later).|
The brown spotted Bengal
"Trollspotting Ravenna" our spotted Bengal girl
in brown (spotted ) pictured @ 8 months
The traditional color of the Bengal is that of the leopard, black spots upon a gold background. This color is sometimes referred to by breeders as the “leopard” color. The intensity and colors of the spotted Bengal can vary considerably. The basecolor and the color and the color of the pattern should have the highest contrast as possible. The base, or background color can range from grey to sandy buff, golden, rust, brown, orange and ivory.
A warm rufus ground colour is preferred. Some breeder may mention the “sorrel” color, which is actually part of the spotted brown division. Sorrels have brown spots on an orange background.
Out of experience it´s proved, that if the basecolor is too rufoused (at young age) – the spots turn into brown instead of black and the cats lacks of contrast. Leopard and sorrel colored kittens go through many stages before they develop their true color. Often they do not attain their full rich color until they reach maturity at twelve to sixteen month.
Often, just when a kitten is ready to go to his new home, it is at its absolute worst stage – the “grey fuzzy stages”. Fuzzies is a term used to describe a period in a kittens life when it adopts a natural sort of camouflage, inherited by its wild ancestors the ALC, to blend in with the scenery and stay hidden from potential dangers. The kitten temporarily looses its short, sleek coat and its markings become less striking – the pelt actually becomes “fuzzy”. This period does not last too long, it mostly begin at 5 weeks of age and returning to normal about 13 to 14 weeks later. The period of fuzziness vary from cat to cat – some cats my need a little longer to clear up.
Back again to the color: As a rule, the blacker the spots, the slower the groundcolor come in. So these kittens, who look rather plain as infants, can be the most striking as adults with jet black spots upon a warm rich background.
The color of the spots can vary consideralble, from ink-black over dark brown, to rust-brown. The darker the spots the higher the contrast, but all shades (black-brown) are allowed, as long as the contrast is high enough. Big spots are more spectacular than little ones but also the size vary considerable.
Bengals spots should be random or horizontal. This means that vertical alignment is undiserable, because this doesn´t show by the wild cats. Stripes on body (ripstripes) are also undiserable and hardly bred out.
Rosettes are formed by a part circle of dark spots around a warmer centre. A rosetted Bengal has therefore 3 colors: the basecolor, the warmer centre and the dark border. There are many types of rosettes such as: arrowhead, doughnut, jaguar, pancake, pawprint, shadow . . . . . . .
"Millwood Xcite" ein brown rosetted girl
pictured @ 5 months
Breeder & Owner: Jean Mill (Millwood cattery)
Bengals which have rosettes remind us to wild cats. Because a rosetted Bengal is very desirable and spectacular, they are more expensive than spotted or marbled.
Chin, chest, belly and groins show mostly a cream-white basecolor which stays in contrast to the color of body, flank and back.
The belly must be spotted and distinct face-markings are very desirable. This means, eyes, lips and nose are black outlined. The nose leather is brick-red.
Paw pads and tailtips must be black. More about the phenotyp you´ll find under “The Bengal” – STANDARD
The brown marbled Bengal
"Edoras von Sindri" ( a beautiful Bengal boy from my friend)
pictured @ 7 months
Marking, while derived from the classic tabby gene, shall be uniquely different with as little “bull´s eye” similarity as possible. Pattern shall, instead, be random, giving the impression of marble, preferably with a horizontal flow when the cat is stretched. Vertical striped mackerel influence is undesirable. Preference should be given to cats with 3 or more shades: i.e. ground color, markings and dark outlining of those markings. Contrast with ground color must be extreme, with distinct shapes and sharp edges.
Belly must be spotted ! ! !
Basecolors: see brown spotted
Nose leather: brick-red
Paw pads / Tailtip: must be black ! ! !
The Bengal has a very soft coat, that reminds us to silk. The coat is short to medium and typical for a Bengal. Someone once said, that you can feel if you touch the cat in the dark, IT’S A BENGAL! Maybe its because the single hairs are very thin. There is also a connection between the silky coat of a Bengal and the next special feature: the goldglitter.
Some Bengals look like they were dusted with goldpowder. This glitter of the coat, most called goldglitter or golden shine. The hairs are not actually gold – hairs causing the glitter are hollow and thus reflect light differently, causing a glittered appearance. Especially in the sunlight or bright lamplight this is a very spectacular effect, which is also unique for the Bengal.
Beside the brown Bengals which are the most common, there are snows and silvers. Both colors also exist in spotted/rosetted and marbled.
Snows are subordinated in 3 shades: the seal sepia, the seal mink and the seal lynx. More about this color under “The Bengal” / STANDARD.
The silver Bengal is very very rarely in Germany and not allowed to traditional shows.
NEWS: Since 01.05.04 silver Bengals are allowed to be shown at TICA-Shows for Championship! ! !
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