My love for Serval cats started about 20 years ago, when I was at a cat show in Atlanta. I was approached by a man who asked me if I would be interested in breeding one of my Bengals to his F1 Savannah (Serval Hybrid). I did not have any idea what a Savannah was and when he showed me his award winning 2 year old f1 Savannah, I fell in love instantly.
That very next day I started researching the Savannah and found out in order to get one I would have to breed a Serval to a domestic cat. I didn't know what a Serval was at that time, so I started researching them also. Much to my surprise I found out that they were even more exotic looking and that they have been kept as pets for thousands of years, starting with our ancient ancestors. I also read, even though the servals ancestors were 100 percent wild cat they were much easier to tame and were alot more socialable than early generation savannahs (f1, f2).
After searching the web and contacting a few serval breeders I located a broker that had a first generation male Serval that needed a new home. Kaos was a 3 years old serval from Africa. His mother was bred in the wild by another wild serval. Kaos had been rehomed three times due to the fact that he was not human imprinted. When I first got Kaos he was not very friendly and I had to sit with him for hours, days and months on end in order to win his trust. Now he will come to me and love on me when ever he chooses. He can be a lap cat when he wants to, but on his on terms. I am lucky to have any kind of relationship with him. No one else can even get close to him. Rehoming a Serval is a very hard thing to do and I would not recommend it unless the new owner is very experienced and patient with exotic animals. He/she must fully understand that they may never have a friendly relationship with a rehomed Serval. But I have had pretty good luck with my Serval's and found out that I am very good with them.
Since Kaos, I have acquired 4 females servals. Tiki was 2 years old and about as hard as Kaos to bond with. Shera was a one year old serval and took to me almost immediately. Shera loves on me and is very affectionate, more like a dog than a cat. Ziva was a 4 weeks old serval kitten when I got her. She came from a breeder who was having trouble getting her to eat. This breeder was very busy with the rest of her animals and did not have the extra time needed to take care of Ziva. When a kitten does not eat or drink it usually means there is something seriously wrong. Ziva's breeder took her to the vet several times for treatments and tests but still she would not eat. When I got her I took her to Andrews Avenue animal Hospital in Ozark Alabama and they kept her for several days running tests and lab work on her and found out that she had a very bad kidney infection. The vet did not think she would make it and felt that she might go into kidney failure soon. The Vet kept her for a few days longer and she surprisingly got better, but when she came home we still had to hand feed her by forcing one little piece of food in her mouth at a time and finally as she started to regain her strength she was able to eat on her on. Ziva developed a very strong bond with my husband because on the days I had to work he would sneak her into work, and put her in a box under his desk in order to be able to hand feed her every two hours trying to nurse her back to health. My latest rehomed Serval is Puma, she came to me at 4 months old. She was playing too aggressively with a 7 an 4 year old and the father and mother became scared that she would hurt them. That's why I recommend not to attempt to adopt a Serval as a pet unless all your children are grown. Because Serval kittens love to play and they have very sharp claws. Although, Servals are very smart and be can be taught as a kitten to only play with toys and not to use your kids as toys