The Toyger is a newly-invented breed, which was developed to resemble a graceful and ferocious wild tiger. Nonetheless it owes its bright striped pattern and majestic gait to the efforts of breeders and doesn’t have a single drop of real tiger blood. Despite its wild appearance this cat is marked by a cheerful, loving and biddable nature so it makes a fabulous feline companion.
Photo: © cattery Wild Jungle (твойбенгал.рф)
Cats with tabby coats are often nicknamed as tigers although their patterns bear just pale resemblance to vivid and distinct stripes of the real king of the jungle. In the late 80s of XX century Judy Sugden started her breeding program with the object of making tabby markings in so called tiger cats more bright and expressed. Once she caught sight of two spots of tabby coloration on the temple of her feline cat Millwood Sharp Shooter. After some hard thinking Judy proposed this trait could be a missing ingredient in the recipe of a feline with a genuine tiger pattern.
Two cats played the major role in the development of the young Toyger breed: the striped Domestic Shorthair named Scarpmetal and the stout Bengal named Millwood Rumpled Spotskin. In 1993 Judy also brought Jammu Blu, a stray cat from Kasmir, India, who was remarkable for circular tabby markings between its ears.
Other breeders who contributed greatly into the development of the Toyger were Anthony Hutcherson and Alice McKee. Their joint efforts led to the creation a domestic feline with a sturdy, elongated body, rich tabby pattern that stretches and ramifies, and roundish head markings.
The International Cat Association (TICA) registered the first specimen of the Toyger in 1993, granted it the New Breed status in 2000, and gave the breed the right to compete for Champion’s title in 2007. Presently, TICA is the only feline registry that recognizes this young feline variety.
The amicable and frisky Toyger is fond of people and non-feline pets. Its favorite activities include playing fetch, dragging around its stuffed toys or just following on the master’s heel. Its carefree and communicable nature makes it a desirable feline companion for families with children. This cat is endowed with moderately vigorous temper and likes spending time in exuberant games with familiar kids.
Thanks to its natural quick-wittedness the Toyger commonly takes pleasure in training and can be taught to perform various tricks and commands. It’s quite easy to train it to a leash or to retrieve small objects. Make sure to encourage its progress with kibble and other food, which the cat likes best. This breed tends to observe the rules of behavior, which the master has set for it as long as it has enough interactive toys at its disposal.
The relaxed and easy-going disposition of the Toyger means that it’s a true delight to live with this charming feline. Be mindful though that it’s prone to feel a serious separation anxiety if left without company for a long period of time. If you work full time it’s highly advisable to acquire your Toyger a feline friend with which it will communicate in your absence.
The most common problems for the breed include:
· hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
The Toyger requires very insignificant grooming. Its sleek dense hair will remain healthy-looking and neat only with weekly brushing or combing.
The only other maintenance that this breed should receive is systematic nail trimming and ear cleaning. To get rid of dirt in the cat’s ears use a soft cloth dampened with a mild ear cleanser. Weekly brushing of the cat’s teeth will help to ensure their good condition for long years.
All care procedures must be initiated while your Toyger is still a pliable kitten since it’s extremely tricky to train an adult cat to nail clipping and other routines.