Tonkinese Personality

The Tonkinese breed has been around in Australia for quite a while. So why is it only now becoming so popular?

Firstly, the personality of the Tonkinese is, to me, unique. A cat that will retrieve things for you, run and meet you at the front door when you get home from work, insist on sitting on your lap or the most comfortable position, a cat that not only gets along with dogs but has them wrapped around their little claws, can be taken for walks on a lead, are all characteristics of a fantastic breed.

Tonkinese Appearance


The look of the Tonkinese also draws many people in. It is a medium between the svelte elegance of the Siamese and the cobby boldness of the Burmese. The mink, although not unique to the Tonkinese, is certainly an outstanding feature. The incomplete dominance of the Siamese and the Burmese colour gene creates a stunning look, when added to the aqua marine eyes.

But wait – there’s more. The Tonkinese comes in Siamese and Burmese coat types as well. Many Tonk lovers choose a Tonk rather than the Siamese or Burmese because they don’t like the extremes both breeds can become. For example, many kitten buyers choose a colourpoint because they had a Siamese many years ago when they were much rounder in the face. Some Tonk buyers choose a solid coat type because they don’t like the face too short, combined with the stunning green colour that solid coat Tonkinese have.Lilac Tonkinese Cat

Tonkinese Colours

The Tonkinese come in 4 basic colours:-

Seal – dark brown

Blue – grey

Chocolate – ruddy brown

Lilac – a soft mushroom colour

(Added to this, the Tonkinese now come in Red, Tabby and Tortie coats as well. As you can see, we have a cat for just about everyone.


The Tonkinese in the last few years have become recognised by the major Cat Councils. As a result, there are more breeders producing cats which are now eligible for Championship status. Being shown brings them into the public eye.

When you put all these factors together, you end up with a stunning cat, with a fantastic personality that stands above all others. Why wouldn’t they be popular?

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