Egyptian Mau – The Great Pharaoh Cats

Egyptian Mau cat is a small to medium-sized breed with a short hair. The evident characteristic is the coat with either silver, bronze, or smoky color with the silver fur tipped in black along with large green eyes.

This cat breed is one among the few naturally spotted breeds of domestic cats. They have either scarab beetle marks or M marking on their forehead, later said to be from the United States.

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Egyptian Mau is considered a rare cat breed, only less than 200 kittens register with the Governing Council of the Cat Fancy every year. They are considered one of the ancestors of the modern-day domestic cats. The breed conformation is outlined as the balance between the Siamese slim elegance and Burmese compactness.

Egyptian Mau Cat Breed Profile & Overview

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Egyptian Mau

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Egyptian Mau Origin

Historical evidence points the Maus origin to Egypt but the genetic data published in the Pentascope document shows close relevance to Korat, Mine Coon, and American Turkish Angoras. PlosOne phylogenic tree shows Mau belongs to a group of western-derived breeds.

Egyptian texts and paintings dating back to the 1550 BC depict Egyptians worshipped spotted cats. Scarab marking on the forehead may be the reason for worship. The breed was recorded in Europe before the World war II, which almost wiped out the Egyptian Maus.

French princess, Natalie Troubetskoy was gifted a female silver kitten in Egypt. She returned to Rome with a female kitten and coined her name Baba and bred to a male kitten brought to Rome this time by the Syrian ambassador. She moved to the United States in 1956 with Baba and her progeny and wrote a breed standard and began breeding Egyptian Maus.

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The breed was first recognized in 1968 by Cat Fanciers Federation followed by Fanciers Association (CFA) in 1977 and The International Cat Association (TICA) in 1979. Today most of the cat associations recognize this breed.

Egyptian Mau Facts

  • Egyptian Mau has a distinction of being the fastest running domestic cat as they notch upthe speed of 48 km/hr (30 mph).  
  • If they are not jumping or playing around, they prefer to sit over the lap or snuggle beside you and being worshipped as their ancestors may have been.  
  • Mau means ‘cat’ in Egyptian language and Egyptian Maus are called as Pharaoh Cats.
  • They are sensitive to medicines and anesthesia. 
  • They are more sensitive to cold temperatures and fond of warm temperatures. 
  • Spots appear only on the tips of the hairs of its coat. 
  • They have an unusually long gestation period of about 73 days. Normally, cats have 63-65 days of gestation, although Siamese may take one to two days longer.
  • Maus own musical voices, known for chirp, chortle, and emit other unusual distinct musical voices when stimulated. 
  • Facial expression changes according to mood and eye color changes to turquoise from the green.
  • They love to play with water and smart enough to quickly learn how to turn on the faucet.

Size and Weight

Egyptian Mau is a small to medium-sized breed with a weight of 6 to 14 pounds. The height of Egyptian Mau ranges from 8 to 10 inches and the adult male is slightly taller by on to two inches compare to the adult female.

Egyptian Mau

Coat and Colour

They come in six different colors, black, smoke, caramel, bronze, silver, and blue. The most common color among the Egyptian Maus is silver, while blue Mau is considered the rarest.

The medium-length coat is fine and silky in smoke coloration whereas dense and resilient texture in bronze or silver colors. They have natural spots all over the body and banded tail and legs. M shape on forehead and mascara lines on cheeks. Maus must have green eyes and the amber cast is acceptable in kittens and young ones up to 18 months old.

Appearance

Egyptian Maus have a medium length muscular body with natural spots ranging from small to large that vary in shape. It looks unusual with wild looks but known for being calm and friendly. A wedge-shaped soft head with medium to large ears sits atop the muscular body contains M shape on forehead and Mascara lines on cheeks.

Hind legs are longer than the front which gives Mau an appearance of standing on tiptoes when upright and have a small and delicate feet. Mau is the fastest domestic cat with a unique flap of skin from flank to back knee that assists in running by allowing the legs to stretch back farther, providing for greater agility and length of stride.

Another unique feature of Mau is the dark, long dorsal stripe that runs from head to its tail through the spine. They change facial expressions depend on the mood and gooseberry green eyes change to turquoise blue. They are notable for being the only cats with natural spots that are not a result of human manipulation of feline genes.

Personality

These cats are one of the most favorite pet cats as they are friendly, loyal, and calm. They are devoted to human beings and show happiness by meowing in pleasant sound. Egyptian Maus are moderate to high energy dogs and you may find them on top of bookshelves or refrigerators.

These cats feel happy when with their families and devote themselves to the family or owner.  Egyptian Mau goes well with playful children and other cat-friendly pets at home who matches with their high energy levels and active lifestyle. They are wary and reserved about unfamiliar guests.

Egyptian Mau

Behavior

Egyptian Mau breed cats are known as highly active cats. They like to climb and jump, and love to stretch out maximum height along a long cat tree and appreciate window perch and solid scratching post.

When feels happy, Egyptian Mau vocalizes in a pleasant voice. Emit unusual and distinct musical vocalizations like chirp, chortle when stimulated. They swish their tail slowly and knead with front paws. Happy Maus shows another behavior called ‘wiggle tail’ in which cat wiggle and twitches its tail appears to be marking its territory known as spraying, although it doesn’t urinate.

They love to show their hunting artistry by chasing and retrieving the toy. These cats love to play in the water and don’t surprise if you find these cats dipping their paw in your aquarium or pool, turn on the tap of your kitchen or bathroom, etc. These cats prefer the family members over others.

Egyptian Mau Diet

Cats are carnivorous require food that simulates the fresh meat. They need food with high protein with a mix of carbohydrates, vitamins, amino acids, and minerals. Avoid low-quality cat food that contains a mix of grains like wheat and soy as fillers.

Provide them a balanced diet that suits their energy levels. Like other cats, Maus often don’t drink enough water, so provide them dry kibble with wet cat food. Never feed high carbohydrate food alone as they suffer from obesity and diabetes.

Lifespan

Each cat breed has a different life expectancy with its shape and size. The average life expectancy of Egyptian Mau is 13 to 16 years. The life expectancy depends on various factors such as lifestyle, diet, etc. If you take proper care it may live a few more years.

Egyptian Mau Grooming and Care

Generally, they don’t need extra care but brush it weekly to maintain the coat healthy, shiny and to remove dead hair and distribute skin oils.

Trim nails once in a couple of weeks and clean the ear if unclean or dirty with a gentle cleanser with vet advice or wipe with a soft damp cloth with 50:50 cider vinegar and warm water mixture.

Brush its teeth daily by using the vet-approved toothpaste to maintain fresh breath and overall health and to prevent periodontal disease. Daily brushing is best but weekly brushing is better than nothing. Better to trim the nails and brush the teeth of Egyptian Mau from the stage of kitten or difficult for Mau to accustom.

Keep the litter box clean, as they are specific about bathroom hygiene. Spotted litter boxes may force them to use other places of the house. Make sure to keep indoors only to prevent disease spread from other cats, and to avoid other dangers like attacks by dogs or run over by a car.  

Egyptian Mau Price

The average price of Egyptian Mau is $700 – $1200. Depending on the variety and breeder, you may have to spend anywhere between $700 to $1200.  

Shedding

Unfortunately, Egyptian Mau is not hypoallergenic. They have medium to dense coats with fine, silky, and resilient texture respectively, and shed constantly.

Egyptian Mau Kittens
Egyptian Mau Kittens

Health Issues

Like pedigreed cats and mixed breeds, Egyptian Mau is also prone to develop genetic and non-genetic health problems. Egyptian Mau generally considered a healthy cat, but the only predispositions include urolithiasis and pyruvate kinase deficiency. Purchase the kitten from the certified breeder. Check the genetic line of the breed you are going to purchase.

Other diseases include Leukodystrophy, a neurological condition that affects the kitten at an early age of 7 weeks. Control the weight of your cat to prevent arthritis as they grow. Another disease that may affect them is Cardiomyopathy, which is a heart muscle disease that leads to heart failure. Ensure the heart condition of Mau by visiting the veterinary cardiologist.

Egyptian Mau Cat FAQs

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