Bengal cat cattery opens in Springfield: ‘They just have a little bit more touch of wild to them’

A Bengal cat cattery is open in Springfield for families looking to adopt a unique pet.

“They’re not for everybody, but most people who have them say they are the best type of cat because they have these characteristics that make them a little bit different than a normal house cat," Shawn Kaeser, co-owner of KZR Cattery said.

Kaeser owns the TICA (The International Cat Association) -registered cattery, located at 6675 Middle Urbana Road, with his wife, Jamie.

“She is really the brains and the mind behind this operation," Kaeser said.

They decided to move to Springfield from the Columbus area to be closer to their family and to allow their kids to experience the “farm life,” he said. Jamie was interested in Bengal cats and wanted to open a cattery with her prior knowledge of operating dog kennels. Once they moved, they decided to go all in and open the cattery, he said.

“It’s a lot of fun,” Kaeser said.

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“The cats are something the kids can do and are not really scared of. They can be a part of it and they can see the circle of life, so to speak, in action," he said.

Bengal cats are a mixture between an Asian leopard cat, which is a wild cat, and a domestic cat, Kaeser said. They have many characteristics of a wild cat like their love for water, athletic ability, fur patterns and high energy level.

“They just have a little bit more touch of wild to them," Kaeser said.

The Bengal kittens are ready for adoption at eight weeks and cost between $1,200 and $2,000 depending on their color and markings, he said.

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Kaeser explained that the popularity for this cat breed is growing because they are hypoallergenic. He said they have had families from states all over the country wanting to adopt their kittens including Louisiana, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

He added that Bengal cats are regulated in some states depending on how close generationally they are to wild. Most states have no regulations, including Ohio.

“They are a great way to kind of see a different side of a cat," Kaeser said. "It’s not exactly an exotic animal, but it’s not your normal cat either.”

For more information or to adopt a Bengal cat, visit www.kzrfarm.com or search for KZR Farm on Facebook.