to SELECT EXOTICS, a progressive, innovative, TICA registered cattery which continually strives to produce the highest quality domesticated companions.
Established by hybrid pioneers Dale Hummel, Professor of Animal Science, and his family in 1988 when the Bengal breed was still in its infancy, Select Exotics has grown into a state-of-the-art cattery. Today, working with his wife Holly, the cutting edge facility has expanded in many directions. The illusive Safari cat has been added to its programs, the Habari and the Jambi cats have been created, and Select Exotics holds the distinction of being the longest standing, one owner/breeder of the elegant, ever-popular Savannah cat.
Dale's knowledge of animal genetics, nutrition, and health, plus his access to leading vets and academicians in animal research are impressive credentials and assets that set Select Exotics apart. They have been invaluable to Select Exotics. For instance, when researching the possibility for the yet unknown Savannah breed in 1994, Dale is tremendously encouraged by Dr. Favero, a fellow graduate student pursuing his PhD in reproductive physiology. Further encouraged by visits with leading geneticists at UC Davis and Cornell, Dale's plan for mating the large African Serval with the much smaller domestic cat is set into motion.
Years of work and many disappointments later, Select Exotics achieves success! And not only is Select Exotics successful, breeder Joyce Scrouf's program for a serval/domestic cross bears fruit as well. Reassured by Joyce's accomplishment, Select Exotics realizes their creation of a Serval hybrid isn't a once in a lifetime fluke. The Savannah is, indeed, feasible and re-creatable. Being the longest standing, single owner cattery/breeder of Savannahs, Select Exotics feels its extraordinary felines are due to the years of hands on experience and carefully calculated matings.
In 2002, Select Exotics launches a program to retrieve the forgotten Safari cat, a cat more difficult to breed than the Savannah. While the similar size of the Geoffroy's cat and the domestic affords an easier mating, problems arise due to chromosomal differences. It is rare to have a female recognize her pregnancy as self and carry to term. There also appears to be a sex-linked lethal gene affecting the male kittens, making males extremely rare. While the past few years have seen more and more breeders try to produce the Safari, Select Exotics feels fortunate to be able to say it has been the most successful.
Shortly after starting its Safari program, Select Exotics envisions a new breed, the answer to years of requests for a wild-looking, good tempered, BIG CAT! Drawing on its diverse genetic base, Select Exotics selects for size, a striking rosetted coat, an extremely social, interactive personality. and the Habari is born! Selection of three traits, versus a multitude of traits when conforming to a breed standard, has allowed the Habari to advance at an accelerated pace. Select Exotics is extremely pleased with the Habari's progress as are those who have chosen to make a Habari part of their family.
In 2004, Select Exotics acquires its foundation Jambi cat Asia, a playful, affectionate Fishing Cat/ domestic hybrid. A breed in progress, Select Exotics is working to create the ideal mate so Asia will be able to produce large kittens with the thick, cobby Fishing Cat physique.
Although Bengal pioneers, Select Exotics now breeds only a couple of Bengal litters yearly. However, the quality within those litters is powerful. While not a big cat, the wild-appearing Bengal is a show stopper with its striking, clear, contrasting coat dappled with large, open rosettes.
Select Exotics constantly endeavors to produce the best in wild-looking, healthy cats that are loaded with personality. As Select Exotics' programs evolve, consultations with leading geneticists and veterinarians will continue. This insures everything possible is done to produce the quality clients have come to know and expect.
Both Dale and Holly hold college degrees. Both have hands-on knowledge and diverse animal backgrounds since childhood. Experience, plus their deep, sincere love and respect for their cats, have richly contributed to Select Exotics' success in exotic feline breeding.
Dale and Holly have also been blessed with four wonderful children. Dylan, Tara, Chase and Kadie all help to socialize Select Exotics' kittens, roles they most certainly enjoy. To learn more about the Hummel family, go to the Our Family