15-08-2021 by Leni Frau
The Mijikenda tribes call it 'Khadzonzo', a word that refers to their mottled coat, and it is the true indigenous cat of the Kenyan coast.
Originally from the Arabuko Sokoke Forest, it is known as the Sokoke Forest Cat.
The purebred specimens of this breed are less and less.
Nowadays, the Khadzonzo suffers from the arrival and the mixing with other imported species and maybe even more beautiful and harmonious, with the shiny coat, the more rounded muzzle and the less pointed ears. But the Sokoke cat remains one of the species to be protected.
It was already considered rare when some Englishmen from Watamu domesticated, about fifty years ago (without too many problems) some specimens of Khadzonzo of the forest. After several years, the sokoke breed was recognised by animal welfare organisations worldwide.
The first non-resident Italians, who arrived in good numbers on the coast at the beginning of the eighties and bought large villas with gardens and used to spend their winter holidays, especially in Malindi, brought their beloved domestic felines from Italy, but many already found several Khadzonzo around the town and welcomed them into their homes.
The sokoke cat is very active, prefers insects as protein food, climbs well (a legacy of its forest life) and is sociable with other domestic animals. It emits a rather high-pitched and insistent meow and this characteristic sometimes makes it an element of disturbance, but if it spends a lot of time outdoors it is able in a short time to become independent while remaining a "cat" of the house and seeking a relationship with the man who cares for it and with children. Its life, on average, lasts about 15 years.
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