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Toyger Cat – Cat Breed Guide

Adopt a Toyger Cat, Cat Breed Guide


The Toyger cat breed was first developed to specifically resemble the wild and exotic appearance of the tiger. This domesticated cat breed aimed to appear a toy tiger or miniature version of the large wild cat that is famous for having beautiful coat stripes.

This breed is considered to be a designer cat and not a naturally bred domestic breed. Today, only The International Cat Association recognized the Toyger cat breed as a distinct domesticated cat breed,

Official Name

The breed’s name depicts the toy tiger appearance, with striped coats that is similar to the wild tiger.


The Toyger cat is a relatively young cat breed that was first developed in the United States during the 1980s. Pioneer breeding credits goes to Ms. Judy Sugden. Although created in the US, the male progenitor of the Toyger cat is from India.

Recognized By

The International Cat Association – First to recognize and granted full recognition status as a Championship Breed in 2007.


There is a theory that this particular breed was created from crossing a domestic cat with the Bengal. However, this has been unverified and a more accurate historical account of the Toyger cat involves one Ms. Judy Sugden.

The Toyger’s creation was purely accidental as the breed’s creator; Ms. Judy Sugden did not originally aim to create this “designer” cat breed. Ms. Sugden was actually only making some clarifications on the mackerel markings in cats with tabby-patterns. While looking for the answers to clarify her queries, she noticed that one of her cats displayed very distinctive and noticeable markings.

This particular specimen showed tiny spots that are on the temple area of the cat’s face. This distinct pattern is typically not known to appear on any domesticated cats. The pattern is very similar to the wild tiger’s striped coats and proves that the circular tiger-face pattern can possibly appear on a domesticated feline. Ms. Sugden initiated a development program, using one tomcat that was imported from India because it showed similar and very noticeable spotting seen on one of her cats. As the breeding program progressed, Ms. Sugden used 40 domestic cats from various parts of the world, all of which were selected to provide the specific and desirable traits to achieve the closest possible resemblance to the large wild tiger.


Although relatively young, the Toyger cat is gaining popularity not just because of their exotic tiger-like stripes, but also for their very desirable traits. These cats are known to be very friendly. It is a cat that will be sweet and calm towards people and other pets. This is because the Toyger cat is generally easy-going and very docile.


Toyger cat is a short-haired cat breed that is medium in size with the appearance of a miniature tiger for having elegant movements and well defined striped coats.

The Toyger cat is essentially a designer cat that was created to resemble the coat pattern of the big tiger cat. It is also created to have the confidence and elegant movements of the tiger but the temperament that will make them desirable household pets or the perfect cat companion.

Domesticated felines under the Toyger cat breed are cats with medium to deep and long muscular bodies that have rounded contours. These cats are built strong and robust but do not appear chubby.

Head, Ears and Eyes
Toygers have medium-sized heads that are oval in shape and with a dominant deep, skewed and cylindrical muzzle feature.

Coat and Tail
The tails of these cats are very long but not thick and covered in dense and short fur. The tail tapers slightly towards a blunt and rounded tip. The coat is typically short in length but may be longer in the temple area. Coats are divided into different markings that are typically stripes and with a mackerel tabby pattern. Stripes will differ in every part of the body. Body markings are stripes that are generally vertical in alignment with encircling markings on the tail, legs and neck. Head markings are facial strips that will be circularly aligned around the face.

Toyger cat comes in virtually black to brown, and in some specimens, tan in color.


This relatively young breed is generally healthy. Heart murmurs may occur and it indicates hypertrophic cardiomyopathy or other cardiac-related problems.



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