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Ashera - the most exotic cat of them all

October 2007

The Ashera is the worlds newest, rarest, and most exotic domestic cat. The breed was developed by crossbreeding with two exotic wild species - the African Serval and the Asian Leopard cat, and then adding a dash of domestic cat into the mix. The result is certainly a beautiful cat with leopard-like spots and contrasting stripes, and elegant well-formed features with large pointed ears. This is however, one case where beautiful is not small - this is a cat which stands 4 feet tall on its hind legs. The Ashera likes to climb and is very playful, which is probably not good news for the curtains. Weighing a mere 30 pounds, it will deter mice, small dogs, or annoying ex-partners from hanging around your home. If you have any other cats on the premises, they probably won't be too thrilled either.

A 21st Century cat, the Ashera has been bred for a domestic environment. A spokesmen for the company which produced that cat (we did say it was a 21st century breed) says that these cats have a great temperament and they love children (presumably that is, they love children as friends, not as diet supplements). These cats are apparently so amicable they can be taken out walking on a leash, which is a great way of showing off this splendid beast to envious neighbours. Asheras do not need any particular home environment or food. They will eat the same cat food as a standard moggy, albeit in larger quantities, but a premium-quality dried food is, naturally, what they prefer. They are also happy to use a litter tray, although given the size required, a small child's sandbox might be more appropriate. The one thing which the Ashera does need which sets it apart from most cats, is a nice heated blanket especially during the winter months. Since the Ashera's ancestors come from a hot climate, these animals prefer to snuggle down on something warm for their snooze.

The company which developed Ashera is no other than Los Angeles-based 'Lifestyle Pets'; the same company which developed the first hypo-allergic cat in 2006. The owner, British Internet entrepreneur Simon Brodie, used a team of geneticists to develop the ultimate designer pet. The scientists estimate that Ashera should have a lifespan of approximately 25 years, which considerably longer than that of an average domestic cat.

If you would like to get Ashera for Xmas, remember that this lovable feline can do considerable damage - to your bank account. The cat comes with a price tag of $22,000. And while it will impress the neighbours, it won't if the neighbours are cat snobs, who will look down their noses, and say 'All that money for a Savannah cat without pedigree papers? There's one born every minute.' Indeed, breeders of the Savannah (which is also a large domestic cat with African Serval in its lineage) are already muttering things like this on blogs and at breed shows. This hasn't stopped prospective Ashera buyers forming a queue - the waiting list is about nine months, and the company plans to release only 100 (pre-spayed) Asheras per year.


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