Toyger Cat: Characteristics, Breed Profile & Care

Toyger cats are medium-sized, tiger-spotted, and extremely rare short-haired cats. The Toyger cat breed was created in the United States in the 1980s.

It is one of the most distinctive and unique-looking cat breeds. The Toyger is a domesticated cat. This is why it has a rugged, tiger-like look. The Ocicat has natural markings.

The Toyger, however, is a designer breed. It’s similar to the Bengal, Savannah, and nearly extinct California spangle. The Toyger, a combination of “toy” & “Tiger,” is an intelligent, playful cat that can be owned without being considered wild.

Toyger breeders hope that the cats’ resemblances to tigers will grow over time. The International Cat Association recognizes the cat, not Cat Fancier’s Association.

Overview of Breeds



WEIGHT: 7 to 15%

LENGTH: About 18 Inches

COAT LENGTH: Short hair

COAT COLORS: Orange and black.


EYE COOR: Usually ranges from dark brown to hazel

LIFESPAN: 10-15 years


ORIGIN: United States

Toyger Cat Characteristics

Toyger cats are friendly and easygoing, with a great temperament. Toygers are great companions for families with pets or children. They love to play and give affection.

The Toyger may not be the right cat for you if you are looking for a low level of commitment when exercising your cat.

Toygers are intelligent and can be bored easily, so it is essential to give them play time. Toygers can be trained and taught tricks.

Affection LevelHigh
Exercise NeedsHigh
Energy LevelHigh
Tendency To VocalizeHigh

The Toyger Cat’s History

Judy Sugden, the daughter of Jean Mill, was a breeder who worked with mackerel tabbies in the 1980s. These cats were known for their wild stripes and an “M”-shaped marking on their foreheads.

Sugden noticed that Millwood Sharp Shooter, a Bengal cat she had, had round spots on her head. Sugden realized that a domestic cat with a similar appearance to a tiger could be created from these spots.

Sugden began a breeding program with two cats: Scrapmetal (a domestic shorthair tabby) and Millwood Rumpled Skin (a big-boned Bengal). Sugden imported Jammie Blu, an Indian street cat with unusual spotting, from Kashmir, India, in 1993.

He added him to the breeding program and accelerated the process. Later that year, Sugden brought in pioneering breeders Anthony Hutcherson and Alice McKee.

The International Cat Association accepted the registration of the Toyger and listed it as a champion breed in 2007. This made it eligible for cat shows.

Toyger Cat Care

Most domestic cats have a standard care schedule for Toygers. Because of their friendliness, grooming and playtime should be easy for both cat and owner.

Toyger cats require regular exercise because they are naturally active. You can train your Toyger how to fetch and walk on a leash. Leash-walking is not a requirement. Toygers can play alone indoors and are often active on their own.

Even though they are short-haired cats, Toygers should still be brushed weekly. Regular nail-trimming, ear cleaning, and tooth brushing are all critical.

Common Health Problems

Toygers are a rare breed. This makes it difficult to understand their health issues. It is believed that Toygers are at higher risk of heart murmurs. 

You should follow a regular check-up schedule. Also, ensure you have immunizations and preventive care measures for your Toyger.


Toygers are a distinct tiger-like breed. They have broken, vertical orange stripes and brown-bordered stripes.

According to the International Cat Association, “dark markings with bright orange backgrounds on the outer and top parts of the cat enhanced with gold glitter on the bottom. Every cat has its markings.

Unlike the round rosettes or mackerel stripes of a tabby cat, a Toyger’s fur pattern is random. Toyger heads are unique in that they have circular markings. The unique pattern of its fur is non-hypoallergenic.

Toyger cats are muscular, long-legged, muscular, but not bulky. They have a long, thin, rounded tail and a short, skinny tail.

A Toyger’s profile head is called a “half hexagon.” It has small, round ears and brightly colored or blue eyes. The nose is wide at the base, and the jowl area is more significant.

Diet and nutrition

Toygers eat the same diet as any other domestic short-haired cat. Obesity can decrease your cat’s lifespan. So consult your vet for the best diet plan.

Your Toyger should have access to high-quality, fresh, and clean water and wet food. A small amount of meat can be a nice treat for your Toyger.

  • It is a relatively young breed with no significant breed-specific diseases.
  • The cat must get along with older children and other cats.
  • They are energetic, active, and highly trained.
  • Toygers are exotic looking but have the sweet disposition of a domestic cat.
  • These animals are hard to find and can be difficult to adopt or breed.
  • This breed is not known to have any significant health issues, but it could be susceptible to a slight heart murmur.

Where to Adopt or Buy a Toyger Cat

You may be able to find a Toyger at a purebred rescue if you prefer to adopt. Although you may be able to find a purebred Toyger cat through your local breeder, there are only 30 other Toyger breeders worldwide. A Toyger cat can be purchased for between $2,000 and $3,500. Toyger cats are subject to permit requirements in some states due to their closeness to Bengal cats. These cats have more genetic overlap than wild cats. This could be an important consideration when adding a Toyger to your family.

Different types of Toyger Cats

Only one type of Toyger cat exists. Toygers are not like other cats. Maintaining the breed’s pedigree is essential by ensuring they have a tiger-like appearance.

Toyger Cat Overview

Toygers can be a beautiful, rare, and elegant breed. Although finding a Toyger for you may be challenging, they are great companions and need a high standard of care.

Additional Research and Breeds

These cats are a great choice if you’re interested in similar breeds.

  • Bengal Cat
  • Savannah Cat
  • Egyptian Mau

You can also check out our other cat breeds.


What's the difference between a Bengal cat or a Toyger?

One genetic half of a Bengal cat is a Toyger, which creates many standard features. Both cats look very similar to wild cats. However, Bengals have more round spots than Toygers and are more striped. Toygers are slightly smaller than Bengals and have different head shapes. They also have different angled eyes and tail lengths. Both breeds make excellent pets and are very well-mannered.

What shelters can I get a Toyger?

A Toyger breeder is the best way to find the cat due to its high-value pedigree, rarity, and price. A shelter would be the best place to find a Toyger if it appears. There are very few chances of finding a Toyger kitten at shelters.

Is there a connection between Toygers and tigers?

Toygers can only be related to tigers by name. This breed does not contain any tiger blood. However, Toygers transmit some genetic material with the Asian leopard cat.

How much do toyger cats cost?

Pet rate Toyger cats can cost as low as $1500, but Toyger kittens that are show grade or breed quality range between $2500 and $3500. Most will need a $200 pet deposit beforehand as well.

How big do toyger cats get?

Like Bengal cats, Toygers often look more extensive than their weight indicates. According to Catster, adult females generally weigh between seven and 10 lbs. Adult males norm between 10 and 15 lbs.

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