What Is a Caracal?
A caracal is a special kind of cat that is considered exotic. As such, owning one will have different rules for cat owners that want to own a special cat.
A caracal is a medium-sized cat that is sometimes also called a Persian lynx. Its ears are distinct and tufted and can swivel in a way slightly different than the domesticated house cat. This is for them to see their prey. Its paws are also heavier and padded so that it can prowl and move around its environment without being detected by predators.
The average caracal reaches 3.5 feet long and will weigh between 25 and 40 pounds, whereas the average domesticated house cat will reach 10 to 15 pounds in a healthy weight. Owners that want to own caracals will need to take into consideration that there are multiple additional expenses to owning this breed of cat.
Costs of Caracal Ownership
The average caracal purchase can start at $1,500 USD and can reach as high as $20,000. This is the standard upfront cost of an exotic cat. In addition to this initial cost, food costs for a caracal will be high. An adult caracal will eat up to three pounds of meat every day, and has protein needs higher than household pet food can provide.
Many caracal owners will need to work with a specialized veterinarian to create a plan that will meet the needs of the caracal. Specialized veterinarians are required for every caracal owner, as this is an animal with unique needs, weight, and nutrition preferences. A caracal is also going to have different health needs than the average domesticated house cat. It will face unique health challenges that the average cat owner will not have to worry about. Health insurance for a caracal may be difficult to attain.
Caracals are wild creatures, even when purchased for domesticated purposes. They are difficult to train and are independent. This independence can make caracals difficult to live with. Owners will need to invest in home furnishings and make environmental changes to accommodate life with their caracal.
In Which States Is It Legal to Own a Caracal?
There are only a few states that allow ownership of caracals. In each of these states, licenses are required. The states that allow a pet caracal to be owned are: