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WHAT ARE BENGAL FUZZIES?

Found in Bengal kittens only, there's actually a very good reason why these bengal kittens go through a fuzzy stage. In the wild, the Asian Leopard's kittens are covered in fuzz for extra warmth and camouflage from predators. Since bengal cats have some Asian leopard blood they have retained some of them most interesting traits from their wild ancestors. 

bengal fuzzies before and after

Here's a picture of Safari at about 16 weeks during his fuzzy stage and at a year old when his coat is completely done changing. 

Two distinct fuzzy stages in bengal cats

First bengal kitten fuzzy stage-

With the birth of a litter of bengal kittens you will see lots of spots on very fuzzy cute kittens. An experienced breeder will be able to tell right away which kittens are the most impressive out of the litter (most of the time, lol). Some of the kittens can really really surprise you though! There's been a few times when I was like "meh" about a kitten only to realize very soon after that the kitten was actually quite impressive!

 

This first fuzzy stage starts to clear up very quickly and at about 2 1/2 weeks old you can get a very good idea of what their pattern will look like along with the contrast and clarity of their coat.

 

The first stage of fuzziness is not the one you will hear most breeders talking about but I thought it was worth mentioning because if they came our perfect and then got fuzzy it would be much easier to have a "best guess" at what the kittens price would be. Not taking into account all the other important atributes that make bengals fit the breed "standard" of course.

 

"First fuzzies" as I like to call it is not too bad, clears up pretty quickly, and I think it has more to do with the kitten being a new born and having a little extra fluff to keep them warm. 

Second bengal kitten fuzzy stage-

In the wild, the Asian Leopard cat mom will have her babies hidden in her den and they will just be sleeping and nursing and they are a little fuzzy but you can see the spots pretty well. As the kittens start to wonder out and explore it's very important that they blend in with their surroundings so that they don't become some predators meal. cat will have to leave her young to go and hunt for food

Starting around 4-5 weeks old and lasting until the kitten is about 16-20 weeks old. The second fuzzy stage is at it's worst around 7-13 weeks old, right about the time the kitten is ready to go home.

 

Bengal kittens begin to have longer "guard" hairs protruding from their coat at about 4 weeks old. Many consider it a stage of being an "ugly duckling" where the kittens don't look nearly as cute. I'm very guilty of telling my clients "oh, they are in their fuzzy stage" right after they give a complement about how beautiful the kitten is. {Insert face palm emoji here. Lol!} But it really is true. The second fuzzy stage is the worse the kitten is ever going to look. 

 

Not only do the kittens look fuzzy but they also loose contrast and clarity and their coat takes on a very dull appearance. But the kitten is about to begin a great transformation.

 

The fuzz starts to disappear and the undercoat becomes more prominent in the weeks to come and continues to change color (becoming more beautiful) until the cat is about a year old.

Interesting facts about bengal kitten fuzzies

  • Some kittens get really fuzzy and look quite unimpressive.

  • Some kittens only get the smallest amount of fuzz and don't ever really seem to have a fuzzy stage. 

  • The fuzzy stage is different for each kitten some enter it earlier or later than others.

  • The fuzzy stage ends at different times for each kitten. On average they get out of it between 16-20 weeks old.

  • Once the fuzzy stage is over there is still lots of transformation that will take place until the cat is about a year old.  

Why some bengal cats don't seem to have a fuzzy stage-

No one really knows why a select few kittens seem to almost skip the fuzzy stage. All the kittens will have a fuzzy stage but some will just be a lot less noticeable than others. I haven't noticed that a kitten with very little fuzzies ends up any more beautiful than a cat that had a noticeable fuzzy stage.

Adult bengal cat coat

A bengal cats coat will change dramatically from birth until adulthood. Once the bengal is out of it's fuzzies it's still no where near how it will look as an adult. The colors will intensify, contrast will become greater, clarity will enhance, and the rosettes will really start to pop! Also the center of the cats rosettes will get lighter which looks so amazing when it's got a much darker outline going around it. 

If a kitten has a lot of gold on its face you can expect that golden color to travel all over the body, even if the background color of the kitten is cream. I always look at the face to get a good idea of what the background color will change to as the cat matures.  

A bengal cats coat should be done changing when they reach about a year old. 

Great example below of one of our kittens in the fuzzy stage and then as an adult.

bengal kitten in fuzzy stage around 4 weeks old
bengal cat out of fuzzy stage

Watch the transformation of our bengal cat Emma from a day old until an adult. 

bengal-kitten-cat-fuzzy-stage-days-old
bengal-kitten-cat-fuzzy-stage-1-week-old
bengal-kitten-cat-fuzzy-stage-2-weeks-old
bengal-kitten-cat-fuzzy-stage-3-weeks-old
bengal-kitten-cat-fuzzy-stage-6-weeks-old
bengal-kitten-cat-fuzzy-stage-8-weeks-old
bengal-kitten-cat-fuzzy-stage-14-weeks-old
bengal-kitten-cat-fuzzy-stage-progression
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