What is a Savannah Cat?

A Savannah cat is a cross between an Exotic African Serval and a domesticated house cat. Savannahs are noted for their tall and slender bodies and their large ears. Savannahs are a newer breed starting in the late 80’s, and the breed grows more breeders worldwide are mating a Serval to a domestic successfully.

Unlike hybrid breeds of other animals, Savannah cats are classified by the amount of each breed that they contain. We have controlled our breeding process down to an exact science to ensure everyone receives the perfect pet for their household. From F1 Savannah Kittens through F6 Savannah Kittens, we have them all. When breeding a domestic household cat with a beautiful exotic animal such as the African Serval, it takes caution, care, a lot of work and a lot of love. Here at A1 Savannahs we breed our Savannah kittens from the heart. Our pure love of the breed has helped us create the very breed that many have come to love. Our adorable Savannah kittens are heart wrenchingly beautiful and are extremely intelligent.

There is no better family pet than a Savannah cat. With the energy and loyalty of a brand new puppy and the independence and awareness of the best domestic house cat, the Savannah kitten is breed to have it all.

Different Generations

There are many different number and letter variations to classify the different savannah cats, but to keep in in simple terms we differentiate the different generations using the (F). All Foundation Savannahs have an F and a number associated with it to indicate how many generations it is from its Serval ancestor. This however is not how TICA will recognize the breed. An F1 kitten would be the first generation removed from the African Serval. An F2 would be the second generation removed from the African Serval, and so on. The percentages are just an estimation. If more Savannah x Savannah mating has occurred rather than outcrosses of a different breed, their percentages will be higher.

  • F1 ~57% Serval - one parent will be a serval
  • F2 ~35% Serval - one grandparent will be a serval
  • F3 ~21% Serval - one great grandparent will be a serval
  • F4 ~16% Serval - one great great grandparent will be a serval
  • F5 ~11% Serval - one great great great grandparent wil be a serval
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    What is an SBT Savannah?

    The History of the SBT Savannahs starts here at A1 Savannahs. SBT stands for Stud Book Traditional. An SBT is also bred down from the Serval but it is at least 4 Generations removed. While many Savannahs F1 through F5 are diluted with blood of domestic house cats. The SBT Savannah is a “pure” Savannah that has guaranteed only Savannahs as parents for at least 3 Generations.

    The size or appearance of an SBT Savannah can be compared to an F4 or an F5 Savannah but there are several advantages to owning an SBT. SBT Savannahs are more consistent in their type. Personality and size are better foreseeable and the temperament is predictable. An SBT Savannah is the perfect choice for a family with other pets and small children.

    Why are Savannah Cats so expensive?

    Higher percentage Savannahs are very difficult to breed. It takes many years and a lot of luck to mate a Serval with a domesticated cat. Only a few breeders worldwide have had success but as the breed grows we are seeing a more and more.

    Servals are 100 % wild cats with special needs in terms of their caging requirements, diet and health care. Caring for pure Servals and mating them to domestic cats is costly, time consuming and demanding, but also rewarding.

    The difficulty in breeding the Savannahs and having success is the reason they are so expensive.


    Savannah cats need to be fed a high quality cat food in wet and dry form. Here at A1Savannahs our cats diet is typically a combination of a wet, dry and raw meat. The Kittens will get a high nutrient, well balanced wet and dry food as well as cooked chicken. Our Adults get a grain free dry food offered all day as well as a variety of wet food and raw meat once a day. We do recommend that you use a product with no corn as it is hard for the cats to digest and could cause intestinal problems.

    Litter Training

    All of our kittens are fully litter box trained prior to going to its new home. The kittens will stay with their mothers for a minimum of 6 weeks and the mothers do a great job teaching the little ones the ropes. We use a wood pellet form of litter which is all natural and a great natural deodorizer.


    All of our kittens are properly vaccinated prior to leaving our cattery. They are vaccinated against Rhinotracheitis Calicivirus, Panleukopenia, and Chlamydia Psittaci (KV & Chlamydia), and they are typically vaccinated at six, nine, and twelve weeks. All of our kittens are also vaccinated against Rabies for their first year and dosed monthly for protection from fleas, heartworms, roundworms (Toxocara cati), hookworms (Ancylostoma tubaeforme), and ear mites.

    Vet Care

    Please inform your veterinarian that you are purchasing a hybrid feline, so they can prepare and educate themselves for your new kitten. Savannah cats can potentially have smaller than average livers due to the Serval Ancestry, which can increase the risk of side effects with certain medications. Your veterinarian must use caution when using certain medications for surgical procedures. An isoflurane gas or an injectable anesthetic protocol that is specific to exotic or hybrid bred felines should be used. Your veterinarian is always welcomed to consult with our cattery veterinarian before any procedure. Please contact us for further information, if needed.

    Please Do Not Declaw!

    Please educate yourself completley before making the decision to declaw your feline. Declawing is actually an amputation to the first joint of the toe and we do not recommend it. Declawing can cause numerous health problems as your kitten gets older not to mention extremely painful all though out the cats life. There are several other ways to prevent your kitten or cat from scratching your furniture.

    Hybrid Laws and Regulations

    Since Savannah Cats are a fairly new breed and some are considered Hybrid cats, please consult your local fish and wildlife department for the hybrid laws and regulations in your area. Please note that each state, county, and city has different regulations and can change frequently.

    Check hybrid laws and regulations in your area by visiting: www.hybridlaw.com

    Registration Codes

    When breeding Savannah cats the specifics can become very confusing. Here at A1Savannahs we no longer use any other breeds other than Savannahs and Servals. This is where your abc’s would come from. Since we only breed Savannahs and Servals we will only have our Ancestry and Hybridizations Record codes as follows.

    Ancestry Record Code:

  • 01- The cat has at least one unknown or unregistered parent.
  • 02- The cat has at least one unknown or unregistered grandparent.
  • 03- The cat has at least one unknown or unregistered great grandparent.

  • Hybridization Codes:

  • AO- The Cat is the product of two cats from different breeds.
  • BO- The cat has at least one grandparent of a different breed.
  • CO- The cat has at least one great grandparent of a different breed.

  • Stud Book Codes:

  • SB- The cat has no cats which are unknown, unregistered, or of another breed or breed group within a standard three generation pedigree.

  • Codes:

    The Following Codes apply to the third position of the pedigree status code.
  • T- Traditional: Only the breed in question within a three generation pedigree
  • V- Variant: Crosses outside the breed but within the group within a three generation pedigree
  • P- Permissible: Crosses outside the breed or breed group which are permitted by the breeding program which has been established for the breed.
  • N- Non-Permissible: Crosses outside the breed or breed group which are not among those which are specifically allowed by the breeding program which has been established for the breed.
  • S- Species: Outcrosses to species other than Felis cats/Felis domesticus. Such crosses may be used in foundation breeding programs but are by definition considered non-permissible.

  • For Example:

    One of our F1 Savannahs would be TICA registered as an A1S.

  • A – (the cat is a product of two different breeds)
  • 1 – (one parent is not registered, which is the serval, but can now be registered for breeding purposes only)
  • S – (because it is an outcross to a species other than Felis catus , which again is the serval)
  • Sizing of a Savannah Cat

    The size of the Savannah Cat depends very much on the size and type of their parents and also of the percentage of wild blood they inherit from the Serval.

    The biggest cats we produce are the Male and Female F1 Savannahs and the F2 Savannah Males. They get about two and a half times larger than domestic house cats, with their weight from 15 to 20 pounds, and occasionally, over 25 pounds. F3 males are often still considerably bigger than a domestic house cat. We have produced F3 males ranging in the lower twenties with their weight but rule is 15 to 18 lean pounds.

    F3 Female Savannahs, and all cats of further generations decrease in size but keep their long legs, big ears and the wild appearance. Savannahs need up to 3 years to reach their full size, so please be patient with your kitten.

    Each individual cat will differ in size just like us humans. We can never know for sure exactly how big a kitten will get.

    Savannah Colors and Patterns

    Brown Spotted Tabby:

    A Brown Spotted Tabby is the most common color of the Savannah cats and is what will look most like the African Serval. This can range from a very golden coat with very distinct black spots to a more grey coat with subtle spots.

    Silver Spotted Tabby:

    A Silver Spotted Tabby has a grey or silver coat with black spots. This is the second most popular color of the Savannah Breed. Although not colored like a African Serval this color is very exotic and beautiful.

    Black and Black Smoke:

    Black Savannahs have an all black coat with even darker spots. If you hold them in specific lighting you can still very much still see their spots. Black Smoke Savannahs have a black coat with a white undercoat peeking through.


    Although Snow Savannahs are fairly rare and not a TICA Standard Color their coat is a light white with beige spots.


    Occasionally you will see a Marbled Savannah. Marbles have a very unique swirl pattern on their coat instead of spots and can be in both brown and silver.

    For Examples of the different color and pattern varriations please click on our Photo Gallery Link.

    Savannah Personalities

    Savannah Cats have very loving and outgoing personalities. They are highly intelligent cats and learn quickly. Most of them love to explore the outside on a leash, or play outside in the safety of an enclosed area. Some love to play fetch and follow their favorite person around like a dog throughout the house. A Savannah expects to be a family member that is involved in every activity, rather than being just a usual house pet. They definitely love water and have surprised us often with spontaneous visits in the running shower. If you are looking for a loving companion or a constant sidekick, a savannah is the pet for you. Take a look below to see which Savannah will be right for your home.

    Savannah Trait Differences Between Generations

    F1 Savannahs: If you are someone that enjoys being at home and spending tons of time with your animals an F1 Savannah is an option for you. Since these cats are closest to the African Serval they are the ones that require the most attention. If you are headed to bed, the Savannah will not be far behind you. If you are cooking in the kitchen, the Savannah will be there helping filleting the chicken. If you are doing laundry, you know you need help un-folding all the close you just folded. F1 Savannahs need that constant love and attention to remain that loving companion for you and your family. If you or your family travels frequently, or are away from home for 8 hours, then we would not recommend an F1 Savannah for you.

    F2 Savannahs: Much like your F1 Savannah your F2’s will also need a lot of time put in to keep that loving and affectionate personality. Although your second generation Savannahs are a little more laid back and they enjoy their cuddle time on the sofa, and that playtime in the shower. With an F2 Savannah you have a little more freedom with still that big exotic look. This is a perfect cat for anyone that wants to spend a little time away from home but still have that larger than normal cat that everyone awes over.

    F3 Savannahs: Now that we are entering the middle generations of Savannahs; this is where the more domestic traits come out, just with the added perks of the social aspect of the Servals. F3 Savannahs enjoy nap time, playtime, shower time, cooking time, etc. They will come when you call their name and know when they are being mischievous. F3’s still have that exotic demeanor in which they want their personal cat time to bask in the sun or grooming in the privacy of their kitty home.

    F4 Savannahs: F4 Savannahs are very personable and seem to want to know what is going on at all times. They greet your guest with frequent head butts and sample all food left unattended. F4 Savannahs enjoy sleeping in the comfort of your body heat and waking you in the middle of the night for play time. They are very intelligent and seem to get into everything, in a playful manner of course. They do great with other animals and children, especially if they think they have a new friend to play with.

    F5 and F6 Savannahs: Lower generation Savannahs are quiet honestly one of the best companions a person could have. They are so loyal to their owners and show so much love and affection to those around them. They still have the dog-like characteristics as the higher generations, but are also well equipped with their domestic behaviors. They love to play with toys, specifically for them, or not. You will often find that they enjoy hiding their favorite toys underneath rugs or in shoes. F5 and generations below will tug at your heart strings and will make you never want to let go. These Savannahs are very adaptive are an all around great cat for anyone.