Bengal Colors & Patterns
Domesticated Bengal cats share many of the physical traits with various wild cats throughout the world while maintaining a distinctly positive social personality. As you can see in the photo gallery many wild cats have the same swirling stripes and patterns found within the Marbled Bengals as well as some Spotted Bengals. Notice the shared horizontal stripes/connected spots near the spine and the vertical stripes/connected spots near the ribs, known as "rib bars." Panthers are in fact just a Melanistic form of the Leopard. The same genetics applies to Bengals which create Menalisitic Bengals, or miniature Panthers!
Bengals have three accepted divisions for Championship competition. These are Brown, Silver and the three Snow colors, (Seal Sepia, Seal Mink, and Seal Lynx Point). Within each color division are two accepted pattern types, Spotted and Marble.
Currently the colors we breed for now are: Brown, Silver, Mink, Lynx, and Charcoal.
Recognized Bengal Colors
Brown Bengal cats have green or golden eyes and come in a wide color range with descriptive terms such as golden, creamy, caramel, taupe, honey, tan, beige or red. The brown Bengal is known for its leopard spots which are black or a deep brown pattern. Every Bengal regardless of color is capable of having Brown kittens since this is the default color. The example above is our Queen Bedazzle.
Silver Bengal's have a background color that is a shade of white or silver in color with dark ink like black spots (rosettes) or a marble pattern. Their eye color is green or golden. Silver Bengals are genetically just Brown Bengals but with an inhibitor gene added that washes out the Brown color. The above example is our Stud Prowler. Since he is our only stud, all of our Queens can have Silver kittens.
The Snow Bengal term refers to a group of colors with three distinctive genetic variations being the Seal Lynx Point, the Seal Mink and the Seal Sepia.
Seal Lynx (genetically a "cs, cs" Snow)
The SLP is the lightest of the snow group in color and most often is born white or with very faint markings. Their pattern usually comes in later and most often starting at the points. The one very unique thing about the SLP is that they are the only Bengal color with the clear ice blue eye color. Genetically they have 2 Siamese genes. Lap Leopard Bengals currently does produce the Seal Lynx.
Seal Mink (genetically a "cb, cs" Snow)
The SM will usually be born with a detectable pattern that will usually darken some as they grow. The color background of the SM is usually in ivory, cream or buff with an almost caramel-chocolate tone to their spotted or marbled pattern. Sm's have aqua or blue/green eyes. Genetically they have one Siamese and one Burmese gene that gives the intermediate color. Only our queen Sahara can produce the Mink color.
Seal Sepia (genetically a "cb, cb" Snow)
Are usually the darkest of the snow group and are most often born with a distinctive pattern in seal brown to dark seal brown spotted or marble pattern. The SS eye color is green or gold. Genetically they have 2 Burmese genes. Currently, we don't produce this color.
This color while believed by some to be a separate genetic color is also used by many as a descriptive term for the darkest range on the spectrum within the recognized colors. i.e. Charcoal Brown and Charcoal Silver. "Charcoals" have very little to no rufusing in their wild dark greyish and/or dark brownish background color. They will have very dark (if not black) spots or marble pattern. Charcoals have dark masks and in the spotted pattern you can notice a thick back stripe running the length of their body along the back, also known as a "cape". Breeders are also now noting the charcoal color variation in Snows and are referring to them as "Charcoal Snows". Genetically they have one non-agouti gene and one Asian Leopard agouti gene. Lap Leopard Bengals are one of the few catteries in the world that produce Charcoals.
Melanistic (Black) Bengal
This is a color that has a black background with faint dark brown-black spotted pattern which can sometimes only be seen in natural sunlight. In the above photo album is a picture of Melanistic Jaguars for your reference. Genetically they have 2 non-agouti genes. Our Shadow Walker can produce the Melanistic color with our new stud Havoc .
Blue Bengal's color tends to have a buttery-peachy toned background color with bluish-gray spotted or marbled pattern. The Blue Bengal's pattern and markings will never turn black. This dilute color is not found in the wild cat species and therefore currently not considered for inclusion in the breed. Genetically they care the dilute gene. Lap Leopard Bengals do not currently produce Blues.
Bengal Spotted Patterns
Although there are only two patterns under which Bengals Cats are shown (Spotted or Marble) descriptive terms are used to define the types of patterns. Single-Spotting, Cluster Rosettes, Paw-Print Rosettes, Doughnut Rosettes, Arrowhead (Rosettes), Embryonic Rosettes are the most common terms. All of these styles are classed for showing under "spotted".
A Single-Spotted pattern has no second color to the spot there is only the background color of the cat and the one spot color. This example is from our Queen Sahara.
Rosette Color Patterns
The rosette color pattern has a distinct alternate color different from the cats background color that is then "outlined or edged" by a darker or different distinctive color. Most Bengal Cats will in fact display a range of rosette styles within their coat pattern which lends to the random unique look the Bengal displays.
Cluster Rosettes are a pattern of small spots forming clusters around the second “inner” color that is different from the background.
Paw-Print Rosettes are open on one side and there are spots edging the second color creating a pattern that looks like paw prints walking across the background.
Doughnut Rosettes are completely or almost completely outlined with a darker color and the center is a distinctly different color to that of the background. This example is from our Queen Ebony Spice.
Arrowhead Rosettes are when a spot or rosette in triangular shapes with the “tip of the arrow” pointing toward the back of the body. This example is from our Queen Mystique.
Bengal Marbled Patterns