Sand Cats are a breed of cat with small body (length 50 cm, plus 30 cm) tail and short legs. They have a big head with ears that are lurking on the side of the head. There size is quite small and have soft dense fur on the back. The color of the cat is light gray and sometimes brown.
The fur is darkish on the back and slightly lighter on the belly. One of the distinctive sand cat adaptations is that these cats have very long tails and the tails have rings on it. Another feature is that there are hairs beneath the feet that make her avoid the hot desert sand. As a desert animal they have a large nose that avoids less water loss that is quite vital in surviving the heat in desert.
Hey hide during the daytime in dens and under the trees and come out at night to prey. They are distributed from the northern Sahara, through Egypt, Israel, the Arabian Peninsular and Iran, to Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Pakistan. There is no freestanding water throughout much of the range of the sand cat. They must rely on getting sufficient moisture from their prey.
Being a desert animal there prey is reptiles, rodents, lizards and sand hare. They have a very acute sense of hearing so they know the exact location of their prey. They must prey everyday to survive as these cats use the flesh and blood of prey as an alternative to water Sand cats display well-developed burrowing behavior. It has been proposed that they may also hunt for their food by digging. There are six different subspecies (types) of sand cat, each found in a different part of northern Africa or southwest Asia.
- F. m. margarita (The Sahara, Algeria to Arabia)
- F. m. airiness (Niger and the Sudan)
- F. m. meinertzhageni (Sahara Algeria)
- F. m. thinobia (Turkistan )
- F. m. scheffeli (Pakistan )
- F. m. harrisoni (Arabia/Jordan )
- F. m. thinobia is the largest of the subspecies and has almost no patterning at all.
Images of sand cats are of particular interest to the scientist as they tell them a lot about this breed that is not found in west. The images of sand cats are rare as they hide themselves pretty well from the outsiders thus making them quite a rarity. The sand kittens are produced at a rate of about 2 liters per year. They gain about 21 grams a day. Their eyes will normally be open by the 14th day, and they will begin to walk by the 21st day. They begin to take solid food at 5 weeks and become independent by 3-4 months.