This is one cat like creature that has always fascinated me and I am not sure there is a lot known about it.
Civets are called "toddycats" in English and "musang" in Malay. The latter may lead to some confusion as 'musang' also refers to foxes, but civets are more commonly encountered by humans.
Civets have a broadly cat-like general appearance, though the muzzle is extended and often pointed, rather like an otter or a mongoose. They range in length from about 17 to 28 inches (43 to 71 cm) (excluding their long tails) and in weight from about 3 to 10 lbs (1.4 to 4.5 kg).
The civet produces a musk (also called civet) highly valued as a fragrance and stabilising agent for perfume. Both male and female civets produce this strong-smelling secretion, which is produced by the civet's perineal glands. It is harvested by either killing the animal and removing the glands, or scraping the secretions from the glands of a live animal. The latter is the preferred method today.
Animal rights group, such as the World Society for the Protection of Animals, express concern that harvesting musk is cruel to animals. Between these ethical concerns and the availablability of synthetic substitutes, the practice of raising civets for musk is dying out. Chanel, make of the popular Chanel No. 5 claims that the natural civet has been replaced with a synthetic substitute since 1998.
(I HOPE CHANEL ARE CORRECT IN THIS CLAIM AS I DO WEAR NO. 5 WHEN I CAN AFFORD IT AND I DREAD THE IDEA OF USING ANYTHING THAT MAY HAVE CAUSED DEATH OR PAIN TO ANY ANIMAL).
Palm civets often venture into urban and suburban environments, with people often complaining about civet faeces or noise from the animals climbing on roofs. Some studies have been undertaken to examine and mitigate human-animal conflict in these cases.
The Raffles Museum of Diversity at the National University of Singapore has adopted the palm civet as its mascot and volunteers call themselves "Toddycats".
Some of the indigenous people in Peninsular Malaysia, the Orang Asli, may occasionally keep pet civets.