Cat Breeds

Tonkinese Cat Advantages and Challenges


  • Tonkinese cats are very people-oriented and sociable
  • Most Tonkinese cats are adaptable to other pets and gentle kids
  • Tonkinese cats are intelligent and fun-loving
  • Most Tonkinese cats require little grooming


  • Tonkinese cats are very energetic – loves to jump to high places
  • Tonkinese cats are full of mischief when feeling bored or ignored
  • Tonkinese cats crave companionship and must not be left alone for long periods
  • Tonkinese cats should be kept indoors or in an enclosed garden for its own safety

Tonkinese Cat Physical Characteristics


  • Medium


  • Short


  • Point colors of natural mink, champagne mink, blue mink, and platinum mink
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Tonkinese Cat Personality

A man-made cross between the Siamese and Burmese, the Tonkinese combines the best characteristics of these two popular breeds.Known as the Ancient Copper Cat of South-East Asia, the elegant Tonk has the darker coat of the Burmese and the point pattern of the Siamese, but with dramatically darker points.

This beautiful Tonkinese cat has a colorful personality to match its colorful coat; it’ll happily spend the day inventing games – it’ll play fetch, tag or hide-and-seek with you, or with other Tonks. This cat has been described as part puppy, part monkey (it flies through the air with the greatest of ease!) and part elephant, as it gallops noisily through the house. ‘Cat proofing’ your home, much as you would for a toddler on the loose, is bound to save you some frustration and breakage in the long run. Naturally, this Tonkinese cat delights in helping to manage the household. It needs and expects to be at the center of your universe, so if your schedule keeps you away from home for more than a few hours each day, then your pet would enjoy having a pet of its own – another Tonkinese cat will be an acceptable companion,and it will lessen the mischief one bored Tonkinese cat can get into.

The Tonkinese cat is warm and loving, highly intelligent and very opinionated. This is a strong willed breed - stubborn, even, and requires persistent persuasion in the training process.

Always vocal, your Tonkinese cat will chatter happily to you as it follows you around from room to room. Incorrigible curiosity means this cat can often get itself into difficult scrapes, and for this reason should never be allowed to roam outdoors unsupervised.

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Tonkinese Cat History and General Information

History and Origin

The first documented Tonkinese was the legendary Wong Mau, a cat brought from the Far East to South-East Asia in the 1930's, who was bred with a Siamese male to create the modern Burmese breed. She was the only known cat of her kind in the West. The modern Tonkinese breed was developed in Canada in the 1960's, and was given championship status in 1984.

Grooming requirements

Grooming needs for this short haired Tonkinese cat are minimal. An occasional bath, a bi-weekly brushing, and your Tonkinese will remain sleek and beautiful throughout the seasons.

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Tonkinese Cat Health

Health Ailments

In general Tonkinese cats are healthy cats with no known common genetic problems. As a Siamese derivative they do share common distinctive genetic “faults” including a tendency toward crossed eyes and kinked tail, all of which are cosmetic and require no medical treatment. Selecting a qualified breeder or buying from a reputable pet store can help eliminate many of these genetic issues. Maintaining your Tonkinese cat’s proper weight and grooming requirements will also help insure its good health, along with regular checkups at the vet.

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Tonkinese Cat Community

Your Tonkinese Cat

Send us pictures and stories about your Tonkinese Cat.

Tonkinese Cat Discussion Group

Get tips from other Tonkinese Cat lovers – and submit a few ideas of your own.

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