If you’re considering bringing a Savannah cat into your home, one of the first questions you’ll have is how much it will cost. Savannah cats are a relatively new breed, and their unique features and personalities make them highly sought after. Unfortunately, however, they can also be quite expensive. In this article, we’ll break down the different factors contributing to Savannah cat cost and give you a comprehensive guide to the expenses you can expect when bringing one of these beautiful felines into your home.
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What are Savannah Cats?
Savannah cats are a breed of domestic cat created by crossing an African serval, a wildcat native to sub-Saharan Africa, with a domestic cat. The breed was first developed in the 1980s and recognized by The International Cat Association (TICA) in 2001. Savannah cats are known for their unique appearance, high energy level, and intelligence.
Savannah cats can vary in size, depending on the generation and the specific cats used in their breeding. The first generation, or F1, Savannah cats are usually the largest and can weigh up to 20 pounds or more. Subsequent generations are typically smaller but still larger than most domestic cat breeds. Savannah cats have a distinctive coat pattern similar to the serval, with large, dark spots and stripes on a golden or tan background.
Savannah cats are known for their high energy levels and need for activity and stimulation. In addition, they are brilliant and curious and require plenty of playtime and interaction with their owners to prevent destructive behavior. Savannah cats are also known for their vocalizations and can be pretty chatty and talkative.
Savannah cats are considered a rare and exotic breed and can be expensive. The cost can range from $1,500 to $20,000 or more, depending on the generation and quality of the cat. Despite their high price, Savannah cats have gained popularity in recent years and are sought after by cat enthusiasts worldwide.
Average Savannah Cat Cost
The cost of a Savannah cat can vary widely depending on several factors, including the cat’s generation, the breeder’s reputation, geographic location, and the cat’s age. On average, a Savannah cat can cost anywhere from $1,500 to $20,000 or more.
F1 Savannah cats, the first generation resulting from breeding a serval with a domestic cat, are typically the most expensive and can cost anywhere from $10,000 to $20,000 or more. F2 and F3 Savannah cats, which have less serval DNA and a domestic appearance, are usually less expensive and can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $10,000.
Savannah Cat Breed Standard
Savannah cats are a hybrid breed created by crossing a domestic cat with an African serval. As such, they don’t have a traditional breed standard like purebred cats. Instead, they’re judged by a set of guidelines by The International Cat Association (TICA). This means that the cost of a Savannah cat can vary depending on how closely they meet these guidelines.
For example, a Savannah cat with a more “wild” appearance, larger size, and more pronounced spots will generally be more expensive than a cat with a less striking appearance. On the other hand, if you’re looking for a show-quality Savannah cat, you can expect to pay more than you would for a cat primarily intended to be a pet.
Savannah Cat Generations
Before we dive into the cost, it is essential to understand the different types of Savannah cats. There are several generations of Savannah cats, ranging from F1 to F7. The F1 Savannah cat is the closest to its wild ancestor, the Serval cat, with the most significant percentage of wild DNA. The higher the generation, the more domesticated the cat, with a lower rate of wild DNA. Each generation has its characteristics, and the price varies depending on the generation.
Here is a breakdown of the average cost of Savannah cats in the United States, based on generation:
F1 Savannah Cats
F1 Savannah cats are the most expensive and most exotic type of Savannah cat. They are also the rarest, with only a few breeders producing them. The F1 Savannah cat is the first generation of a Savannah cat, and they have the most significant percentage of wild DNA, making them closer to their wild ancestor, the Serval cat.
The cost of an F1 Savannah cat ranges from $10,000 to $25,000, depending on the breeder, location, and quality of the cat. The higher the quality, the more expensive the cat.
F2 Savannah Cats
F2 Savannah cats are the second generation of Savannah cats. They have a lower percentage of wild DNA, making them more domesticated than F1 Savannah cats. In addition, F2 Savannah cats are larger than the F1 Savannah cats and have fewer wild tendencies.
The cost of an F2 Savannah cat ranges from $4,000 to $10,000, depending on the breeder, location, and quality of the cat.
F3 Savannah Cats
F3 Savannah cats are the third generation of Savannah cats. They have a lower percentage of wild DNA, making them more domesticated than F2 Savannah cats. F3 Savannah cats are smaller than F1 and F2 Savannah cats and have fewer wild tendencies.
The cost of an F3 Savannah cat ranges from $2,000 to $5,000, depending on the breeder, location, and quality of the cat.
F4 Savannah Cats
F4 Savannah cats are the fourth generation of Savannah cats. They have a lower percentage of wild DNA, making them more domesticated than F3 Savannah cats. F4 Savannah cats are smaller than F1, F2, and F3 Savannah cats and have even fewer wild tendencies.
The cost of an F4 Savannah cat ranges from $1,500 to $3,500, depending on the breeder, location, and quality of the cat.
F5 Savannah Cats
F5 Savannah cats are the fifth generation of Savannah cats. They have a lower percentage of wild DNA, making them more domesticated than F4 Savannah cats. F5 Savannah cats are smaller than F1, F2, F3, and F4 Savannah cats and have fewer wild tendencies.
The cost of an F5 Savannah cat ranges from $1,000 to $2,500, depending on the breeder, location, and quality of the cat.
F6 Savannah Cats
F6 Savannah cats are the sixth generation of Savannah cats. They have a lower percentage of wild DNA, making them more domesticated than F5 Savannah cats. F6 Savannah cats are smaller than F1, F2, F3, F4, and F5 Savannah cats and have fewer wild tendencies.
The cost of an F6 Savannah cat ranges from $800 to $2,000, depending on the breeder, location, and quality of the cat.
F7 Savannah Cats
F7 Savannah cats are the seventh and last generation of Savannah cats. They have the lowest percentage of wild DNA, making them the most domesticated of all Savannah cats. F7 Savannah cats are smaller than F1, F2, F3, F4, F5, and F6 Savannah cats and have no wild tendencies.
The cost of an F7 Savannah cat ranges from $500 to $1,500, depending on the breeder, location, and quality of the cat.
Savannah Cat Breeder Reputation
The reputation of the breeder you choose can also impact the cost of your Savannah cat. A reputable breeder will have a proven track record of producing healthy, well-socialized kittens with good temperaments. They’ll also be knowledgeable about the breed and able to guide the care and training of your new pet.
Choosing a reputable breeder may mean paying more for your Savannah cat upfront, but it can save you money in the long run by ensuring that you’re getting a healthy, well-adjusted cat.
Savannah Cat Geographic Location
The cost of a Savannah cat can also vary depending on where you live. Breeders in some regions of the country may charge more for their cats due to the higher cost of living, higher demand for the breed, or other factors.
For example, breeders on the United States West Coast may charge more for their Savannah cats than breeders in the Midwest or Southeast. However, it’s worth noting that shipping a cat from a breeder in another state can also add to the overall cost.
Savannah Cat Age
The age of the Savannah cat you choose can also impact the cost. For example, kittens are generally more expensive than adult cats, requiring more care and attention in their early months.
However, adopting an adult Savannah cat can also come with its expenses. Depending on the cat’s age and history, you may need to invest in additional veterinary care or behavioral training to help them adjust to their new home.
Savannah Cat Health Testing
Savannah cats are generally healthy, but like all breeds, they can be prone to certain health issues. As such, choose a breeder who conducts thorough health testing on their cats and kittens.
This can include genetic testing for conditions like heart disease, hip dysplasia, and progressive retinal atrophy, as well as regular check-ups and vaccinations. Choosing a breeder who invests in these health tests can mean paying more upfront for your Savannah cat, but it can also save you money on potential veterinary bills.
Spaying/Neutering Savannah Cats
Many breeders will require that you spay or neuter your Savannah cat, especially if you’re purchasing a pet-quality cat rather than a show-quality one. This procedure can add to the overall cost of your cat.
However, spaying or neutering your cat can also save you money in the long run by reducing the risk of certain health issues and unwanted behaviors like spraying or roaming.
Savannah Cat Supplies
When bringing a new pet into your home, there are a variety of supplies you’ll need to purchase to ensure their comfort and well-being. This can include items like food and water dishes, a litter box and litter, toys, scratching posts, and a bed.
The cost of these supplies can vary depending on their quality and where you purchase them. Investing in high-quality supplies can mean paying more upfront, but it can also save you money by reducing the risk of replacing or repairing items down the line.
Savannah Cat Training and Socialization
Savannah cats are highly intelligent and active, requiring a lot of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy and healthy. This can include training and socialization, which can come with additional costs.
Working with a professional trainer or behaviorist to help your Savannah cat learn good manners and behaviors can be a wise investment in your cat’s overall well-being. Similarly, enrolling your cat in classes or activities like agility training or cat shows can also be a great way to keep them engaged and stimulated.
Savannah Cat Lifetime Costs
Finally, it’s important to remember that the cost of owning a Savannah cat isn’t just about the upfront purchase price. Cats, like all pets, require ongoing care and attention throughout their lifetime, and these costs can add up quickly.
This can include expenses like regular veterinary check-ups and vaccinations, food and litter, grooming, and unexpected veterinary bills. As such, set a budget for these ongoing costs before bringing a Savannah cat into your home.
Here’s a quick list of some of the lifetime costs associated with owning a Savannah cat:
- Initial purchase price: As mentioned earlier, the initial cost of purchasing a Savannah cat can range from $1,500 to $20,000 or more, depending on the generation and quality of the cat.
- Veterinary care: Regular check-ups and vaccinations are essential to keeping your Savannah cat healthy. You can expect to spend several hundred dollars per year on routine veterinary care, and unexpected veterinary bills can arise if your cat gets sick or injured.
- Food and litter: High-quality cat food can be expensive, especially if your cat has specific dietary requirements or health issues that require specialized food. Litter is another ongoing expense, as you’ll need to regularly keep your cat’s litter box clean and filled with fresh litter.
- Grooming: While Savannah cats don’t require extensive grooming, they need occasional brushing to keep their coats healthy and shiny. You’ll also need to invest in grooming supplies like brushes and combs.
- Toys and accessories: As a highly energetic and intelligent breed, Savannah cats require plenty of playtime and interaction with their owners. Investing in toys and other enrichment activities can help prevent destructive behavior and keep your cat happy and healthy.
- Training: Savannah cats can be trained to walk on a leash, use a toilet, and perform other tricks. However, training takes time and effort, and you may need to invest in training classes or hire a professional trainer.
- Boarding and pet sitting: If you travel frequently or need to be away from home for an extended period, you may need to board your Savannah cat or hire a pet sitter. These services can be costly, especially if you need them regularly.
- Miscellaneous expenses: Other expenses to consider include flea and tick prevention, scratching posts, and other supplies to keep your cat comfortable and healthy.
Savannah cats are a beautiful and unique breed that can make excellent companions for the right owner. However, they can also be quite expensive, and carefully consider the factors contributing to their overall cost before purchasing.
By understanding the breed standard, generation, breeder reputation, geographic location, age, health testing, spay/neuter, supplies, training and socialization, and lifetime costs of owning a Savannah cat, you can make an informed decision about whether this breed is right for you and your budget.