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Facts about a Bengal;

Early history

The earliest mention of an Asian leopard cat × domestic cross was in 1889, when Harrison Weir wrote of them in Our Cats and All About Them.

The next recorded mention of an Asian Leopard Cat x domestic cat cross was in a 1924 Belgian scientific journal, and in 1941 a Japanese cat publication printed an article about one that was kept as a pet.

The early breeding efforts always stopped after just one or two generations. Jean Mill was the breeder who decided to make a domestic cat with a coat like a wild cat.

Bengals as a breed.

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Jean Mill of California is given credit for the modern Bengal breed. She had a degree in psychology from Pomona College and had taken several graduate classes in genetics at University of California, Davis.

Jean Mill made the first known deliberate cross of an Asian leopard cat with a domestic cat (a black California tomcat). However, Bengals as a breed did not really begin in earnest until much later. In 1970, Mill resumed her breeding efforts and in 1975 she received of a group of Bengal cats which had been bred for use in genetic testing at Loyola University by Willard Centerwall. Others also began breeding Bengals.

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