American Cat Fanciers Association        

Egyptian Mau Breed Synopsis




  Egyptian Mau Breed Standard




First noticed is the striking and bewitching beauty of the Egyptian Mau!   It is no wonder it was worshiped, cherished and protected by the Egyptians.   Pasht, an Egyptian goddess, was descripted with the head of a cat.   At first Pasht was the symbol of fecundity and beauty.   Next Pasht became the sun, moon, motherhood, and love goddess as well.   She was born to rule (the Mau has never forgotten this) for her mother was Isis and her father was Ra.   The cat reached its peak around 950 BC when more than 700,000 pilgrims traveled by boat each spring to Bubastis for her festival.

The Mau, Egyptian word for cat, was mourned and mummified upon death.   Harming a cat in Egypt was illegal and punishable by death.   An elaborate funeral was given, a wake was held and as a show of grief eyebrows were shaved by their owners.


The only natural domestic spotted breed it is believed to be a subspecies of the African wild cat. Tomb hieroglyphics found on the walls of the pyramids depict this spotted cat domesticated more than 4,000 years ago. When agriculture was well established in Egypt by 2500 BC silos of grain attracted rats and mice. Cats with very similar markings to those of the African wild cat were tempted out of the woods. Thus they became useful members of Egyptian society.

The Mau traveled to the United States in 1956 with royalty. Nathalie Troubetskoy, a Russian princess carried a wicker basket with three Egyptian Maus when she emigrated. A silver female BaBa, a bronze son JoJo and a silver barren female Liza. BaBa had been presented to Princess Troubetskoy by a young boy who had been keeping the tiny kitten in a shoe box. He had been given the kitten by a member of diplomatic corps of Mideast embassies. Research was done and she discovered the shoe box kitten was an Egyptian Mau. From these she started Fatima cattery. Since that time imports have broadened the gene pool.

A medium sized, well muscled, moderately active cat. The Mau is extremely intelligent, healthy, affectionate and becomes quite attached to its caretakers. They are randomly spotted, while their legs and tails are banded. The head is slightly rounded wedge without flat planes, medium in length. Ears medium to large may be tufted. Eyes large and alert almond shaped, slight slant to eyes. Body medium long and graceful. Hind legs slightly longer than front giving an appearance of being on tip toes. Feet small and dainty with five toes in front and four in rear. A primordial flap of skin extending from its hind legs to its abdomen is thought to give its exceptional speed and agility. Gooseberry green eyes that develop generally by 18 months of age. Mascara lines, a scarab mark on the forehead and the large eyes gives a worried expression to this ancient beauty. Acceptable colors for the show ring are silver, bronze, and smoke. Also, there is the black that is not eligible for show.












Breed chair
Phyllis Goodell
Colony, KS