Many people are unaware that cats and bobcats are related. Bobcats, also known as Lynx rufus, is the smallest of the North American wild cats. Despite their wild nature, bobcats can live in harmony with domesticated cats — as long as a few specific steps are taken to ensure their safety.
Can bobcats and cats get along?
Bobcats and cats may look similar, but they are two very different animals.
Bobcats are wild cats with larger bodies and thicker fur than your average house cat, so it’s important never to assume that they can get along like two pets in the same family might.
Having an untrained bobcat in your household is not only dangerous for your house cats but also illegal in most states.
If you’re looking to bring some extra companionship into your home, leave the wild cats where they belong – in the wild.
The Relationship Between Bobcats and Cats
Bobcats belong to the same genus as domesticated cats, and the two species can produce healthy offspring when bred together. However, while it may be possible for a bobcat to get along with its domestic cousin, there is no guarantee that this will happen in all cases.
A variety of factors must be considered before bringing a bobcat into your home.
Safety Considerations for Keeping a Bobcat at Home
If you decide to bring a bobcat home, you should take every precaution necessary to make sure that both animals remain safe.
The first step is to ensure that the cage or enclosure where you will keep the bobcat is large enough to have room to move around comfortably. It should also be secure enough to not escape or injure itself while playing or running inside the enclosure.
In addition, it should have plenty of food and water available at all times — preferably in separate dishes or containers — as well as toys and other items to keep it entertained while confined indoors.
You should also ensure that you never leave your cat unattended with a bobcat, even if they appear to be getting along well together; there is always a chance things could turn sour quickly between them if left unsupervised.
What is a Bobcat?
Bobcats are impressive wildcats native to North America and Central and South America.
Uniquely adapted for life in the wild, these creatures are incredibly skilled hunters who utilize their remarkable senses to capture prey easily.
Bobcats have beautiful spotted coats, sharp claws, and powerful legs for running.
They can remain undetected by most animals due to their agility and efficient use of hiding spots along the forest floor.
Although they occupy a wide range of habitats, they usually prefer areas with a great game, seclusion from humans, and protective terrain features such as hollow trees or rock dens.
As formidable predators, bobcats have few enemies in the wild apart from other apex predators like mountain lions or wolves.
They are carnivorous animals feeding smaller animals like mice, voles, rabbits, and fish. With proper care and respect for their natural environment, bobcats can live up to 15 years in captivity.
Will a bobcat kill a domesticated cat?
Bobcats generally have no interest in domesticated cats and feel no need to hunt them.
It is rare for a bobcat to attack a house cat unless it is in bad condition due to starvation or injury or if the smaller cat is seen as a competition for resources.
When it comes to cats roaming outdoors, it’s much more likely that a bobcat would avoid contact with them than actively seek them out.
Just remember, any wild animal has the potential to be dangerous, and these predators should be given their space by providing your pet with a secure outdoor area – such as an enclosed porch – whenever possible.
It’s important to remember that just because two species are related doesn’t necessarily mean they can live together peacefully. When considering whether your cat could get along with a wild animal like a bobcat, proceed with caution by taking all necessary safety precautions for both animals involved before allowing them near each other. With careful monitoring and appropriate safety measures in place, however, cats and bobcats can live harmoniously together.
FAQs about bobcats and cats
Q: Are bobcats dangerous to humans?
A: Bobcats generally do not pose a threat to humans and are typically very shy around people. However, they will defend themselves if cornered or threatened. Therefore, it is essential to give them their space and respect their natural habitats when in the wild.
Q: Can bobcats and cats coexist?
A: Yes, it is possible for bobcats and cats to coexist under the right conditions. It is essential to ensure that each animal has its secure area with plenty of food, water, toys, and other activities. Additionally, it’s necessary to monitor them while they are together and never leave them unattended.
Q: What is the lifespan of a bobcat?
A: Bobcats typically live from 8-15 years in captivity, depending on the care they receive and their living conditions. In the wild, bobcats often have shorter lifespans due to predation or other environmental hazards.
Q: Can a bobcat and a cat breed?
A: No, bobcats and house cats are two distinct species and cannot interbreed. The offspring of such an attempt would not be viable. Additionally, it is essential to note that attempts at cross-breeding can result in serious health issues for both animals involved.
Q: Are bobcats protected in the United States?
A: Bobcats are listed as a species of particular concern in some states and are fully protected in others. It is essential to check with local laws before attempting to capture or remove bobcats from their natural habitats. Additionally, it is illegal to keep bobcats as pets in most states.
Q: What should I do if I see a bobcat in my area?
A: If you spot a bobcat, stay back and observe it from a safe distance. Do not attempt to approach or interact with the animal, as this can be dangerous for both of you. Additionally, it is essential not to feed the bobcat or leave food out as this can cause them to rely on humans for sustenance. If you are concerned about the presence of a bobcat, contact your local wildlife agency for assistance.
This concludes our overview of bobcats and cats coexisting together. By understanding their behavior, respecting their space, and providing appropriate