The Egyptian Mau is a natural breed, which originates from the Cairo area. (Mau is the Ancient Egyptian name for the divine household cat). They were first seen in Europe at a Rome cat show in the 1950’s and from there were imported into America in 1957. They gained recognition in America some fifteen years later but the breed has not been recognised by the Governing Council of the Cat Fancy in Great Britain.
The Egyptian Mau is the only natural domesticated breed of spotted cat, other spotted cats being the result of selective breeding of the humans' choosing. The Mau is not so substantial as the British Shorthair but is not so svelte as the Orientals. It is a cat of medium size with well-defined muscles and gives the impression of an athletic active cat. The head is a slightly rounded wedge shape with no flat edges. In profile there is a slight rise from the bridge of the nose to the forehead, which continues to curve into the arched neck without a break. The muzzle forms a blunt wedge and is not be pointed. The ears are large, alert, set wide apart and are broad at the base tapering to a rounded tip. The inner ear is a delicate shade of pink and may be tufted. The eyes are large and almond shaped slanting slightly toward the ears. The body is of medium size and is long and graceful with obvious muscular strength. The hind legs are slightly longer than the front legs. The paws are small, dainty and slightly oval in shape. The tail is of medium length and tapers from a broad base to a rounded tip.
|Colour||The coat of the Egyptian Mau is silky and fine and has a lustrous sheen. Each hair should show at least two bands of ticking. The Mau pattern is common to all colours. There must be good contrast between the pale ground colour and the darker markings. The forehead shows the typical ‘M’ and frown marks, forming lines on the forehead, which continue down the back of the neck. The lines then break to form elongated spots along the spine. As the spots reach the rear of the cat they meld together to form a dorsal line, which runs along the tail to the tip. The tail is heavily ringed and has a dark tip. The cheeks are lined. The first line starts at the outer corner of the eye and follows the contour of the cheek and a second line starts at the centre of the cheek and almost meets the first below the base of the ear. There are one or more necklaces around the neck and chest and at least one of these is broken. The markings on the shoulders are a transition between spots and stripes. The tops of the front legs are heavily barred but are not necessarily symmetrical. The markings on the body are randomly spotted and vary in size and shape, although round evenly distributed spots are preferred in show cats. The haunches and upper back legs show transitional spots and stripes which develop into definite stripes on the thighs and back to spots on the lower hind legs. The stomach shows small spots. There are three colours of the Egyptian Mau: - 'Silver' - The base colour is pale silver across the head, shoulders, back and tail and the underside is paler. The markings are charcoal and show good contrast against the pale silver. The back of the ears are greyish pink and tipped in black. The nose, lips and eyes are outlined black. The throat area and chin are brilliant silver so as to appear white. The nose leather is brick red. The paw pads are black. 'Bronze' - The base colour is a pale bronze fading along the sides and under the stomach to a pale ivory. The markings are dark brown and show good contrast against the paler base. The back of the ears are tawny pink and tipped in dark brown. The nose, lips and eyes are outlined in dark brown. The chin and throat area are a creamy white. The nose leather is brick red. The paw pads are black or dark brown. 'Smoke' - The base colour is charcoal with a brilliant silver undercoat. The markings are jet black and show good contrast against the paler base. The nose, lips and eyes are outlined in black. The throat and chin are pale silvery grey. The nose leather and paw pads are black. The eyes in all the colours are light green with gooseberry being the preferred shade for show cats (although a slight hint of amber is allowed).|
|Age Expectancy||Like most of the foreign and oriental types of cat the Egyptian Mau is quite long lived and ages in the late teens are not unusual.|
|Weight/Height Range||Egyptian Maus weigh between 2.5 - 5kgs.|
|Ailments||They have no specific health problems and can live a long and active life. However it is probably a good idea to have an annual health check from about the age of eight or nine to check the teeth and kidney and liver function.|
The Egyptian Mau is a loving and playful cat. They are extremely clever and love to learn tricks and are one of the few breeds of cat that enjoys walking on a lead. They adore fuss and attention and this makes them ideal family and show cats. They are active and need some stimulus such as toys or companions to play with and another cat is often a good idea if they are going to be left on their own for long. With their striking looks Egyptian Maus may be a target for cat thieves so it may be good idea to confine them to the house and take them out for exercise on a lead.
|Compatibility with Cat||High|
|Other Animal Compatibility||Medium|
Feeding & Grooming
|Feeding||The Egyptian Mau is an active cat and will require approximately 80 Kcals of food per kg of bodyweight per day. They are not prone to obesity and will limit what they eat themselves.|
|Upkeep||The Egyptian Mau requires no special grooming as its short fine coat is self-maintaining but the cat will enjoy being brushed with a soft brush as part of the attention it gets from its owner.|
Discover Other Cat Breeds