In China, the centre of its range, commercial exploitation has been heavy: hundreds of thousands of Leopard Cat skins per year were exported in the 1980s. Although commercial trade is much reduced, the species continues to be hunted throughout most of its range for fur, for food, and as pets. They are also widely viewed as poultry pests and killed in retribution. Island populations are small and seriously threatened in the Philippines and Japan. Leopard cats can hybridize with domestic cats, as is shown by the popular domestic breed, the "safari cat". Hybridization in the wild has been reported, but is not considered a significant threat. Although the species is less dependent on forest cover than others, habitat loss and fragmentation is still a major threat across most of its Asian range (Nowell and Jackson 1996).
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