Known for their gentle and extremely devoted nature, the stunning Egyptian Mau has many unique and wonderful qualities that make this cat stand out among other breeds.
Their appearance sets them apart due to their unique brow marking and dramatic eyes, giving them a naturally worried look. Egyptian Maus are also the only domesticated cat with a naturally occurring spotted coat and have an “M” shape or "scarab beetle” marking on their forehead. Their "tiptoe" posture makes their hind legs appear proportionally longer than their front legs, which give them a graceful look.
The Egyptian Mau’s exotic appearance fascinates many cat owners and enthusiasts. They find this breed unique not only because of their striking spotted coat patterns, but because of their remarkable intelligence and loyalty to their human companion.
They are powerful and athletic felines with exceptional leaping ability and are considered the fastest cat breed capable of boundless bursts of speed. Because of their lineage, they retain many characteristics of their wild ancestors, such as the Cheetah’s gait and a loose skin flap that expands from the flank to their hind leg. This permits the Egyptian Mau the agility and freedom in twisting and leaping.
Despite their astounding athletic skills and physical power, Egyptian Maus are calm and reserved cats. They thrive on being a part of a family but are wary of strangers. Early socialisation is important; otherwise, these cats can be easily frightened by unexpected events or noises. Egyptian Maus communicate enthusiasm or happiness by wagging their tail and kneading their paws. They may also talk to you with gurgles and trills.
This energetic cat breed is moderate to highly active. They are agile and powerful leapers and climbers – making cat trees and high perching spaces a must-have in a household with an Egyptian Mau. If they find that their perches are not enough, you can expect to see your cat on top of bookshelves and refrigerators.
Because of their intelligent and observant nature, Egyptian Maus can teach themselves to open drawers, cabinets, cupboards and doors. They also love to play with water, so expect them to learn how to turn on the faucet.
Egyptian Maus are devoted family feline companions. They get along wonderfully with playful children and other cat-friendly pets. While they have high energy levels, these high-spirited cats do love to snuggle with their human companion when they are feeling sleepy.
- Grooming: Once a Week 2/10
- Shedding: Low 2/10
- Hypoallergenic: Low 2/10
- Activity Level: High 10/10
- Playfulness: High 10/10
- Friendliness to other pets: High 10/10
- Friendliness to children: High 10/10
- Affection towards it’s owners: High 10/10
- Vocality: Low 2/10
- Intelligence: High 10/10
- Independence: High 10/10
The ancestors of the Egyptian Mau are very evident in the artworks of the Ancient Egyptians. Many of their images were of heavily spotted cats with the distinctive and unique mascara marking and barring seen on today's Egyptian Maus. Current research studies headed by feline geneticist Leslie Lyons, PhD, stated that these elegant cats first originated in Egypt. There is genetic and archaeological evidence that show these cats first originated in the said location.
Egyptian Maus arrived in the United States in 1956 when Russian Princess Nathalie Troubetskoy, transported three Egyptian Maus, first to Italy and then to America. They were a bronze male named JoJo and two silver females, Baba and Liza.
Over the years, breeders found it challenging to meet the original Egyptian Mau standard while maintaining their distinctive characteristics and qualities. This was especially challenging due to their very limited gene pool. Current imports have widened their gene pool and helped improve their overall uniformity and quality.
This has all been a trial to cat breeders and judges, but now, Egyptian Maus are stunning and healthy. As a result, The International Cat Association accepted the Egyptian Mau breed into championship status in 1979.
Egyptian Maus are the only natural spotted breed of the domestic cat. Their coats boast a beautiful contrast between the background colour and dark patterning. Their pattern is random and their distinct spots can be any size or shape.
Most American Egyptian Maus have an "M '' on their forehead, frequently referred to as the scarab’s mark. A dorsal stripe travels the length of their spine to the tip of their tail. Their shoulders and haunches show a transition between their spots and stripes.
Their large eyes are alert, shaped like somewhat rounded almonds, with an oblique towards their ears' base. Their eyes contribute to the characteristic of their "worried" look. Their eye colour is gooseberry green.
Their head is a little rounded, wedge-shaped and of medium length. Their profile has a moderate concave rise from the bridge of their nose to their forehead. Their somewhat flared ears are medium to large, moderately pointed and broad at the base. Their hair on their outer ear is very short and close-lying, which results in a nearly transparent look when combined with the subtle shell pink inner colour.
Egyptian Mau is a majestic breed that frequently strikes poses on the judging table. The muscular, graceful body of this beautiful feline athlete is solid and supple. When standing, the Egyptian Maus have a "tiptoe" stance, with their hind legs longer than their front. Their body rises slowly from the back of their prominent shoulder blades to their hips.
Their medium-length tail tapers a little towards the dark tip. Their hair displays a glossy sheen on all three accepted colours: bronze, silver, and smoke. The smoke colour’s texture is smooth and fine, while the silvers and bronzes are dense and tough to the touch. Their coat is medium in length.
Egyptian Maus have frequently been thought of as reserved and shy. But to some extent, the cat breed can also have a unique attraction with people, typically commanding their human’s attention. They will not permit you to ignore them, as they crave the touch of their special person that they see as theirs and theirs alone.
Your Egyptian Mau will be the centre of your world, taking over your life with their remarkable but gentle perseverance. They adore their human companion and their families so much, and they want to be a part of everything that their families do. The cat breed is profoundly loyal and yet happy to go about their business of being a cat.
Some cat enthusiasts call the Egyptian Maus the gentle cousins of Abyssinians. Although this cat breed is not hyper, it has been said that they have some of the fastest reflexes ever seen in the cat world. They are also the fastest domestic cat breed, capable of running as fast as 30 miles per hour.
While the Egyptian Maus are people-oriented, they are also sensitive. They like doing things on their own terms. In fact, these cats can be picky about who can carry or hold them and when.
Egyptian Maus have an extraordinary power of sight, hearing, and scent. They are a cautious, sensitive cat that is easily upset by abrupt loud, unpleasant noises.
Egyptian Maus are intelligent and very observant. Combined with their need for love, attention and interaction, these cats are easy to train. You can start them young by teaching them simple tasks such as using the litter box, jumping onto a cat tree and using the scratching post. As they mature, you can train them using puzzles and interactive toys, playing a game of fetch and walking comfortably using a safe leash or harness. Encourage good behaviour by giving them small rewards such as their favourite kibbles or treats.
These gentle cats are strongly dedicated to their human companion. So take advantage of your cat’s natural character by teaching them commands. When an Egyptian Mau is appropriately socialised and trained while young, they will blossom into being a well-behaved and respectful feline companion for your family.
Egyptian Maus have a medium-length coat. The texture of their fur differs depending on the cat’s colour. Egyptian Maus with smoke colouring have smooth, fine fur, while those with silver or bronze colouring have fur with a thicker, tough texture. Weekly combing or brushing their coat will keep it shiny and healthy.
Train your Egyptian Mau kittens to get used to regular grooming by using a very soft brush to not pull their kitten hairs or hurt their young skin. You can upgrade your brush or comb to one that addresses their coat needs correctly once they are comfortable with being groomed. Don’t forget to reward them if they behave well during the grooming session.
Keep their ears clean and free from infections by checking them once a week for dirt, wax or any buildup. Observe your cat for any foul smell coming from their ears, as it may be an indication of an ear infection. You can clean them using a fresh cotton ball or a soft cloth with a vet-approved cleanser.
Just like their ears, it is essential to check their eyes for discharge and dirt regularly. Use a clean, soft cloth to remove any stains. Just make sure to use a separate part of the fabric to avoid the spread of infection.
Regarding dental hygiene, weekly brushing is adequate to keep your Egyptian Mau’s teeth in good condition and free from any tooth and gum diseases. In keeping their nails clean, you can trim them twice a month or when needed.
Lastly, make sure that their litter boxes are always clean. Egyptian Maus, like many other cat breeds, are meticulous about their bathroom hygiene. Know that clumped litter may stick to their magnificent coat and cause mats and tangles. Also, if their litter boxes are left dirty all the time, this cat breed may develop the habit of using other areas of the house to do their business.
The long history of crossbreeding done with the Egyptian mau has resulted in pushing out most common cat ailments Therefore, Egyptian Maus are generally a healthy cat breed, with just a couple of health condition tendencies you should keep an eye out for.
- Pyruvate kinase deficiency (PK-Def) – is a genetic blood disorder characterised by low levels of an enzyme used by red blood cells.
- Urolithiasis – is a term used to describe calculi or stones that form in their urinary tract.
Despite their natural good health, like all cat breeds, we strongly suggest you seek out a highly trusted and registered breeder to buy a Egyptian Mau from. Ensure they run DNA health checks on their cats as this will rule out the possibility of them having any inherited genetic diseases.
Egyptian Maus are gentle, intelligent and sociable cats. They are also very outgoing and high-spirited. That’s why this cat breed is one of the top choices of families with children. While they are gentle and laidback, it is still recommended to oversee your children when interacting with an Egyptian Mau or any other cat breed. This is to avoid any undesirable event like tail pulling or scratching that may take place because of rowdiness or mishandling.
These friendly cats can live harmoniously under one roof with other pets such as cats and cat-friendly dogs. Still, keep in mind that not all cat breeds are the same; familiarise your pets slowly and in controlled environments to make sure that they learn to get along well together.