The gooseberry-green-eyed Mau is the only natural spotted domestic cat. It may be descended from the small African wild cat, Felis libyca. The Mau, whose name means “cat” is a very rare breed.
Description: The head is a rounded, modified wedge shape, with a medium sized, rounded muzzle and a slight stop to the line of the nose. The medium to large ears are placed well back on the head. The large, almond-shaped eyes are gooseberry green. The facial expression is that of “I didn’t do it!” or one of surprise.
The semi-foreign, medium-long body shows well-developed musculature and medium boning. The hind legs are longer than the front legs. The high-set shoulders blades, higher than most breeds, give the Mau a cheetah-like gait. The Mau is equipped with a “belly flap” which allows the hind legs to stretch out a considerable distance, making it a very swift runner.
The medium-length coat is silky, fine and resilient. The cat’s spotted pattern and its light green eyes give it a beautiful, wild look.
History: The Mau closely resembles the cats in the wall painting of ancient Egypt; its ancestors could have been the cat loved and worshipped in those times. The modern Mau reported dates back to 1953 in Italy. Exhibition of these cats took place in 1955, at the Rome Cat Show.
Temperament: Egyptian Maus are active, colorful cats, curious about everything, yet reserved. They love to lap sit or ride on their owners shoulders and have been known to “cup” their paws like hands to drink water. They are quite friendly and affectionate to the people they like but will sometimes shy away from strangers. When the Mau is happy, it will wag its tail like a dog, Maus are delightful pets.