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Toyger Cat History, Character, Health, Breeding & more

Originating from the USA, the exclusive "designer cat" Toyger is a domestic cat bred to resemble a cat-sized tiger. Therefore, its name is composed of "Toy" like a toy and the ending of "Tiger". Thus, the appeal to their likeness is also conveyed acoustically. Even if the name of the Toyger suggests it, a pet should not be regarded as a toy, of course. But rather as a beloved animal, with which you spend a lot of time in a playful way.

Toyger Cat History

In the late 1980s, Judy Sudgen began breeding a cat that phenotypically resembled a tiger. The breeder amplified the tiger tabby so that the bands ran down the body and also down the face and temples. Thus, the tiger-like appearance was created.

Bengal male "Millwood Rumpled Spotskin" and domestic cat "Scrapmetal" formed the basis of the breeding program. Since 2007 it is officially recognized as "Californian Toyger".

The standard states that the Toyger is a "designer cat". Breeders define their breeding goal by morphing, generating graphic images of the ideal Toyger. In this way, they want to achieve or optimize their breeding goal, the small big cat for the living room.

Toyger Cat Appearance



The Toyger exists exclusively in a brown tabby pattern. The correct name of this pattern is Brown Tabby Mackarel (brown mackerel). The very silky short coat of the Toyger looks almost like that of a tiger.

The Toyger is medium-sized, and it has an athletic, muscular, and elongated body with a broad chest and medium-length legs, as well as large and powerful paws. The big cat in small size reaches a weight of 3.5 kilograms in the cat to 4.5 kilograms in the male. The appearance is as strong as you would expect from a tiger. The paws are large. The distance from the body to the ground is identical to the height of the body.

The Toyger's head is long and broad. Their ears tend to be small rounded in shape.
The same goes for the eyes, which are set deep in the skull of the Toyger. The chin of this cat breed is very distinctively shaped. Their nose is long and broadly shaped.

Toyger Cat Character

The Toyger's temperament is described as very pleasant: Playful, cuddly, very curious, and extremely intelligent.

The Toyger has been bred explicitly for indoor keeping and, unlike we would assume for a tiger, does not necessarily need outdoor access. A cat-proof garden or a run on the balcony with a cat net is of course nevertheless very suitable for her. Basically, the little tiger can lead a species-appropriate and thus happy life as a city and apartment cat.

In general, the Toyger is not so much a predator, but rather a cuddly cat. It perfectly combines the opposites of the appearance of the Asian big cat and the character of a cuddly live-in cat and thus fascinates its fans and owners. However, it is important that the intelligent, eager-to-learn, and the playful animal receives plenty of employment opportunities from you as its potential owner - in the form of intelligence toys and other employment opportunities with which it can play to its strengths.

Cat agility and clicker training are ways to provide mental challenges for these exceedingly intelligent house pets. Fun and games also mean a lot to the Toyger - as do extensive cuddles with their roommate humans. Only when your roommate kitty leads a life that suits her nature, strengths, and needs, will she be happy in the long run.

Toyger Cat Care and health

The rather hardy feline furry creatures with the appearance of a tiger should be examined, vaccinated, and checked for parasites by a veterinarian at regular intervals, just like all other house cats.

As a short-haired cat, the Toyger will be happy if you groom its coat with a soft cat brush from time to time.

Specific hereditary diseases are not known in the Toyger. Their health is generally considered to be very good.

Toyger Cat diet

The cat is a pronounced carnivore. Considering their natural eating habits, the meat content of their food is very high. BARF - from the English: "Biologically Adapted Raw Food" - corresponds to feeding with raw meat and offal. Many consider barfing to be the biologically species-appropriate way of feeding a cat par excellence because it comes closest to the cat's diet in the "wild". By the way, when preparing food according to Barf standards, you should never use household salt, but only Himalayan or sea salt.

While the Barf nutrition for cats can register a large fan community, others swear again on the conventional wet food. In many households, it forms the basis of cat nutrition. With wet food, however, it is essential to pay attention to high quality. Test ratings from recognized institutions provide information about, particularly recommendable varieties. Of particular importance in assessing the quality of cat food is, for example, the proportion of protein. This means that the recommended products contain high-quality proteins that can be easily digested by our beloved fellow cats.

The non-recommended varieties, on the other hand, often contain significantly too much phosphorus, in some cases up to six times the recommended amount. This overdose, however, damages the cat's kidneys. The decisive factor here is also whether the phosphorus is an artificial additive or whether it comes from animal feed ingredients. However, it cannot be denied that chronic kidney disease is a common cause of death in cats. Also, some foods significantly exceed the maximum amount of sodium considered healthy.

One positive aspect of wet food is its high water content of 80%. Dry food has a significantly lower proportion of liquid. Some people criticize dry food because it supposedly or actually puts the convenience aspect of humans in the foreground: Even if the cat consumes it throughout the day during the work-related absence of its human, it does not develop an unpleasant odor.

If you decide to feed mainly dry food, be sure to ensure that your little tiger meets its liquid needs elsewhere. For example, you can set up a cat watering hole and place water bowls in various places around the home. It corresponds to the natural nutrition of the cat to take its food and water in separate places. Your beloved furry creature should also find the conditions imitated by nature in your household. Because a cat that lives according to nature is a happy cat.

Find Toyger breeders

The number of reputable Toyger breeders is limited. You can recognize a serious breeder basically by certain aspects. For example, the kittens should have reached an age of at least 12 weeks before they start their journey to a new home. Also, as a prospective buyer, you can easily sense when the breeder cares deeply about the welfare of his cats. Form a comprehensive overall impression: How is the hygienic condition of feeding bowls and litter boxes? You can tell a lot from this as well.

It is also important that the cats have family contact. Among other things, this is because they are already accustomed to the conditions that they will encounter in a similar way in your household. Thus, your future roommate kitty will not react disturbed when you operate a loud vacuum cleaner. Dare to ask all the questions that are on your mind: A trustworthy breeder will be happy to assist you in all questions with competent advice and action.

You can also tell a lot from the cats' behavior: Do the animals seem basically open-minded towards people or rather apathetic and. fearful? The latter is to be interpreted as a warning sign. Pay attention also to the mother and brothers and sisters of your future kittens: How do they appear to you, and how do they behave among themselves? Only in the case of cats in the shelter, the very shy behavior of the cat would be classified as "normal" with corresponding negative previous experiences. Animals from the breeder, on the other hand, should not give a too shy or frightening impression. It is also positive if the breeder is a member of a pedigree cat club.

When you pick up the cat, you will also receive the following from a reputable breeder:
  • Vaccination certificate (EU pet passport)
  • Health certificate
  • Information about the pedigree of the animal
  • Proof of ownership
  • Chip data
  • Purchase contract
  • Nutritional recommendations
The price range for a Toyger is between 1.000 and 1.600 Euro. The price of a breeding animal is in an even higher price range, namely between 3,500 and 5,000 Euros. At the "International Independent Toygerbreeders Association," the following rule also applies: You can recognize serious breeders of Toyger by the fact that the small tigers are registered with TICA (The International Cat Association). Additional registrations with other recognized associations are possible, but not mandatory. They do not exempt the breeder from the need to be registered with TICA.

It is up to you whether you want to make do with a Toyger from the breeder or fall in love with another small tiger from the animal protection.

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