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Bobcat Face

Lynx rufus-Bobcat.This native feline ranges in size from about 15 to 40 pounds. Found throughout the county, there are wide variations in body conformation and coat patterns. Some are beautifully spotted, some are plain, northern bobcats have longer fur throughout the year, southern bobcats seem to be longer legged and lankier, and can have stunning rosettes and spots.

Bobcats are certainly not for everybody. In fact they are only right for a special few. But when the right person hand-raises a baby bobcat in the right environment, they will experience the intense affection, and powerful bobcat personality, that will provide many years of wonder and joy.

Bobcats are an important ambassador species for wildlife educators. When baby bobcats are exposed to lots of environmental stimulus and people, they develop outgoing and confident, friendly, personalities. According to the USDA policy, bobcats, like all other carnivores, cannot be declawed, so outreach educators need to habituate their young bobcats to regular nail clipping to reduce the risk of injury. Adult Bobcats tend to loose their interest in traveling so most outreach education program bobcats only have a working life of about 2 to 4 years. After that, this species usually prefer to stay home in their familiar enclosure.

Bobcats are predators armed with sharp teeth and claws. This makes them unsuitable to be around small children who cannot be trusted to show good judgment reliably. Couples with young family members, or contemplating starting a family, need to pass on purchasing a bobcat.

Additionally, being a native species, many state Game and Fish or Natural Resource Departments require permits to possess this species.. When people want to raise bobcats as companion animals, it is counter to the agency's hunting mindset that they are wild animals to be harvested, and not to be cherished as loving companions. Some states only permit licensed educators or zoos to possess bobcats. For those interested in bobcats as a companion, you must live in a state that permits this kind of ownership.

Bobcat kittens are hand reared starting at about 14 days. They will nurse a bottle until eight weeks to twelve weeks of age. Bottle feeding is a psychologically important activity for these felines. The milk formula should be a quality product like KMR or Milk Matrix 33/40 with additional calcium and vitamins. When the kitten reaches 5 to 6 weeks, begin adding Iams Kitten formula canned meat diet to the milk mixture.

Kittens raised with dogs or puppies or domestic cats can develop friendships with them. Bobcats generally do well in the house, aside from climbing on the kitchen counters and cabinets, racing across the furniture, or playing in the toilet. Kittens will use a litter box naturally and hardly ever miss until they reach sexual maturity, at which time their toilet habits change.

It is very important to spay or neuter your pet before it reaches adulthood if you wish to continue to allow it access to your home.

Adult bobcats benefit from a large outside enclosure. Build an enclosure of at least 600 square feet so that they have plenty of room to run and play, and you have space to visit them in. Feed weaned bobcats canned Zupreem, Mazuri dry or a raw meat diets with calcium and vitamins added. The calcium/phosphorus ratio must be at least 1.2 to 1. Boneless meats are especially unbalanced without calcium supplementation. Chicken necks provide a rich source of calcium and are a good item to feed in addition to boneless meat sources like chunk beef, or liver and kidney.

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Feline Conservation Center
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Feline Conservation Center 

Bart & Lynn Culver
lynnculver@hughes.net

(479) 394-5235

 

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Bobcat Jumping