Toyger Fiasco

Warning – mild cat-related rant follows:

I think I’ve seen it all now. A news clip from National Geographic says there’s a woman who is creating a new kind of cat, modeled after Bengal tigers – called a toyger.

According to this article, this woman thinks she’s helping wild tigers by creating a small housecat in their image and donating part of the sales of kittens to tiger conservation. She says people will possibly remember wild tigers by having toygers.

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Photo from National Geographic newsletter

What is wrong with this picture? First, the world does NOT need another kind of cat, tiger-striped or otherwise. What – the standard “tiger cat” isn’t pretty enough? The breeder admits the toygers have absolutely no tiger genes (thank God!) and that she is striving for a look-alike. I have one more question: Why? OK, two more questions: Are you insane?

The world is overrun with unwanted cats and kittens. Controlling feral cats is a huge, huge problem with no workable solution as yet. Cats are responsible for the deaths of literally millions – millions in the big plural – of birds and small animals every day. And we need to ‘create’ (where are the ethics in that?) another breed to remind us of wild tigers which we have allowed to become nearly extinct? This will ease our consciousness about how we treat the creatures of Planet Earth?

The toyger creator seems to think toygers will “make up for the loss of these species [tigers] on Earth due to our stupidity.” Huh? How is a look-similar domesticated artificially bred housecat on velvet pillows going to make up for wild tigers – Bengal or otherwise? Gasp.

The article also mentions Bengal cats – similarly created years ago by breeders to resemble another wild cat – ocelot, I think – that are now “overwhelming” shelters. Fashion gone bad at the expense of the cats.

I like cats. I like cats that are fat and lazy and sleep on the windowsill. I don’t like cats that roam free and kill just because they can. And there’s something just wrong with artificially creating a cat for money and ego using the very real and very serious threat to wild tigers as an excuse. If I were a tiger, I think I’d really be insulted.

It would seem to me that much more would be accomplished for saving tigers if people would gain some common sense; if government would create and enforce environmental laws that work – and if those willing to plunk down $3,000 or more for a tiger-lookalike to impress their egotistical friends just donated the money to tiger conservation organizations instead.

Sometimes – life is ridiculous.

35 Responses to “Toyger Fiasco”

  1. Lynne from Hasty Brook Says:

    Ridiculous is RIGHT!! Ceating a new cat breed is just crap. I ditto everything you just said. You KNOW the breeder’s bottom line is $$.

    Give me a nice gray and black tabby please.

  2. Laura Says:

    Ridiculous is right, but it’s cool-looking and I won’t admit to even liking cats. But I see the attraction – look how cool!

    I’m kidding, really. Foolish people will buy them because they’re *in* and they’ll end up in shelters when folks move on to the next craze.

    I preach the whole “don’t breed or buy while shelter pets die” thing as much as possible, but people don’t get it. They seem to feel that because they’re buying it, they have an inherent right to get whatever they want, no matter how foolish.

    I admit to liking certain breeds of bunnies, but I don’t go out buying them. I wait until one shows up in rescue and satisfy my *wants* that way. Most people see taking an animal second-hand as negative – as if *used* is bad. Silly!

    • Billy Louvin Says:

      Let me know when I can get one… Don’t listen to these other responses they don’t have the means to really help. By the way, I want to launch a conservation course that will create tons of jobs and raise awareness for having a life. : )

  3. obi4240 Says:

    The bottom line is $$ – and I think what irks me the most is the use of wild tigers as an excuse to make it right.

    Cool looking – yeah, I agree with you Laura, it’s a pretty cat. But underneath all those stripes, it’s still a cat!

  4. John Says:

    I don’t necessarily see a problem with breeding cats to look a certain way. Humans have been doing that for millennia, and cats of almost any breed could end up feral or abandoned in shleters. But I agree with your point that people interested in tiger conservation would be better off donating directly to organizations that work on habitat and advocate for better environmental protection.

  5. John Says:

    Of course, “shleters” should be “shelters.”

    I like cats myself, but if I were to get a cat, it would probably be a tabby. They have a bit of the tiger look about them anyway.

  6. obi4240 Says:

    John – I appreciate what you’re saying (and by the way, I do like cats too – especially indoor cats). I think what I’m trying to say is that, at some point, shouldn’t we say ‘enough?’ We have enough cats; surely we have enough cat breeds to satisfy nearly everyone. Like cars – just how many different kinds of cars do we really need? I mean really – they all do the same darn thing!

    We don’t have enough tigers. But I think what bugs me the most is the thought that breeding tiger lookalike cats will somehow help save real tigers. I think it’s going to require far too many kitten sales to accomplish that, and the problem for tigers goes deeper than conservation funding.

    Tabby cats are cool – my first cat was a tabby. Thanks for commenting.

  7. Dave Says:

    “I have one more question: Why?”

    You answered your own question before you even asked it… to raise money and donate to tiger conservation sites. Yes, the lady will probably get a ton of money for herself, but its also helping out an endangered species. In other words, its a win-win situation no matter what way you look at it. The lady gets rich, the tigers are closer to being “saved” and someone crazy about tigers gets a cat looking like a tiger. Why do you care so much anyway? No one is forcing you to buy one.

  8. Amie Says:

    Because people are trying to play God nowadays,
    It’s not right!
    If house cats don’t look like tigers, they aren’t meat to be tigers.
    You’re just fucking up the whole system balance of things.

  9. Granada Says:

    I too have something to say on this subject. I have a cat that acts and looks like this new “toyger” breed. I sent a picture of him to a “breeder”, just to get their opinion on his appearance. From the pic I sent I was told by no means do I possess a “toyger”.
    He looks virtually identical, if not prettier, than the pics on the Net.He also displays traits that these breeders claim are displayed by “Real Toygers”.Talk about arrogance on behalf of the designers. My cat is a natural “toyger” and they will not admit it.
    Now, I do not agree with designer breeds. What everyone here has said is 100 % true. Millions of furry folks die every day because of our human indulgences. I personally care for around 10 cats that people keep dropping off outside my home because I love animals. I do not have ythe time or money to care for these poor, uncared for felines, but I do what I can.I wonder how mant more will be deposited on my lawn in the purr-suit of the coveted “Toyger?
    Time will tell.

  10. Granada Says:

    A last note people- Remember the Miniature Pot Bellied Pig craze?
    ‘Nuff siad.

  11. Half-Tiger Half-Cat Hybrid: Toygers Top 6 Links via BuzzFeed « TheMostBoringBlogInTheWorld Says:

    […] The World Is Overrun with Unwanted Cats and Kittens Already! by naturalnotes3.wordpress.com […]

  12. Al Jones Says:

    Don’t be such uptight snobs. I think these “toygers” look really cool, and I would certainly be tempted to look after one! And FYI I also rescue ferals, which is probably a darn sight more than most of you do.

  13. Tony Blair Says:

    Granada,

    In “doing what you can” you’re very likely exacerbating the cat population problem. Instead of trying to take care of them collect them and deposit them in a shelter so they can be spayed and neutered.

    Better they be neutered than allowed to randomly reproduce.

    As for breeding toygers I don’t see the problem here.

    The reasoning invariably seems to be that prospective owners should somehow be obligated to choose castoffs/strays/unwanted cats as their personal pets.

    I don’t subscribe to that reasoning, though I have rescued several dogs myself, and had them as beloved family members.

    So long as she is not adding to the cat population in an irresponsible way, meaning she takes care that her cats, and their offspring are not freely breeding without regard for her ability to care for them, then I see nothing wrong with what it is she’s doing.

  14. Michael Phillips Says:

    To those who say the shelters are overun, that is true and unfortunely will always be true until people who buy cats for pets restrict themselves to neutered pets.

    Most Toygers sold are neuters.
    They help dedemonise Tigers.
    They help raise and maintain awareness of true tiger’s peril.

    I do not see the “Tabby Associations” doing anything about raising awareness and FUNDS for tiger conservation.

    It is so nice to hear the barrage of regurgitated tripe from the Sunday Socialists “there are too many cats” and “I would think a tabbey from the shelter would be fine” “these designer cats end up in shelters”

    Few if any pay $3,000 for a cat and throw it away.
    Free be Tabbeys in their millions end up in shelters.

    Once again can Americans keep their views of American problems in their LOCAL context.
    The rest of the world can make up its own mind.
    If there is a problem in Australia about ferral cats, I do not
    impose upon the rest of the word readers the localise solution on you.

    regards,

    MCP

  15. CINDY Says:

    I HAPPEN TO OWN A BEAUTIFUL TOYGER, MYSELF. SHE WILL BE NEUTERED WHEN SHE IS 6 MONTHS OLD, AND SHE IS THE LOVE OF MY FAMILY’S LIVES. SHE IS VERY “CANINE” IN THE WAYS SHE ACTS (COMES WHEN CALLED BY HER NAME, FETCHES, SLEEPS IN THE BED WITH US, LOVES OUR LITTLE MINIATURE PINSCHER, ETC.) I THINK PEOPLE SHOULD BE ALLOWED TO VOICE THEIR OPINION, BUT THEN REALIZE THAT IS ALL IT IS, OPINION. OH, BY THE WAY, SHE ALSO DOES NOT PRODUCE THE DANDER THAT MOST PEOPLE ARE ALLERGIC TO.🙂

    • Morgainne Says:

      Um…sorry but she does. The protien in her saliva flakes off her coat when it dries after grooming like all other cats. Genetic experiments haven’t even been able to remove the protien without sever congenital problems in the kittens. Wouldn’t want them to remove it anyway. It’s a mirror molecule that mimicks the scent of detergent, thus giving them their ability to clense themselves and distinct fragrance. Love my kities scent!

  16. Izrul Says:

    The picture of the cat looks more like a tiger.🙂

  17. kagr Says:

    i personally think they’re beautiful.

  18. Dez Says:

    This post is hogwash. You can’t attach morality to a carnivorous animal. Just because you like birds doesn’t mean you have to hate cats. Cats kill birds. Get over it.

  19. Casey Says:

    I love how you are complaining about the cats yet look at what we have done to dogs and horses and almost every other animal. Get over it. So what people breed animals, don’t complain about one and not the others.

    About the cats attacking birds and bunnies? Doesn’t every animal do something like that? If you want to get so sentimental then maybe start getting mad at birds because they eat worms. There are worm lovers out there.

    Basically, your not being forced to buy the animal. If some of the profits are going to help save the tigers then thats even better. At least they aren’t being completely selfish in the process. Get over it.

  20. Dustin Says:

    ok for starters what the heck is wrong with you? learn some facts about both sides of the arguement not just one you simple minded idiot.

    Things are meant to come and go in life so who cares if we try to re-create or atleast remember all of things once living.

    I’m sorry you dont have a love for this majestic animals as most do, but you shouldnt sit here and say this is an ludacris idea cause you dont love the nature that is around you.

    These animals are a re-creations yes, and yes its because we love the animal that is about to DIE FOREVER! so why not try to create something other than pictures and memories for this once great thing.

    I believe since it is man’s fault for the tiger going extinct that it seems fit in a way for us to create another in its liking. Maybe in the future we can great the actual thing once more.

    As for the killing of the DAMN birds, who cares there are way more flippen birds in the world than there are cats. Death travels through many living thingsand many once living things its how the world goes round. As for your death i hope you get mauled to death by a tiger so you can see its true power and hatred toward those who do not understand it.

    YOU ARE AN IDIOT FOR WHAT YOU SAY AND THINK. LEARN MORE THAN ONE SIDE TO THE ARGUEMENT AND BE OPEN MINDED TO ALL SIDES!!!!!!!!!

  21. darkjinzo Says:

    sorry i think you are wrong i like those cat and im getting one and if it helps more wild tiguers so be it

  22. Adam Says:

    Why do people always mark cats as murdering vermin!? I think people have to be reminded that human beings are overpopulating and are guilty for the deaths of entire species. But yes Toygers are a preposterous idea.

  23. Anne Viner Says:

    What two breeds are bred to make a Toyger offspring? I really wanna know cuz I don’t think there are any Toygers around here and I was just wondering what two cat breeds I need to have Toyger kittens please can somebody tell me cuz i have no clue.

  24. CLSnNWC Says:

    making a new type of cat i think is awesome for the people that want bigger cats but not all the dangerous behaviors. i personally think its crap that people can let the cat and rabbit and any other fast multipling animal species increase(SEPERATE THEM) but i think its great that they are trying new things, besides the fact that there could be health risks for those animals. i would hate to hear about them dying.

  25. Shayna Says:

    I think its a neat idea. This cat is gorgeous and why does it matter if there’s another breed of cats. They’ve been around for many years and more to come. Its like having your own personal tiger without being so big and being afraid of being eating of every second. 😀

    • Raziel Blackmore Says:

      a neat idea?

      how many kittens u think were thrown in the dumpster before they came up with this result.

      • Reason Says:

        What makes you so sure any kittens were thrown away in the dumpster at all? Don’t jump to conclusions you ‘tard.

  26. Tory H.. Says:

    Every debate has pro’s and con’s. I personally feel that it’s an interesting idea; a tiger-like appearance compiled into a loveable, loyal feline house companion. For hundreds of years we’ve been reproducing other animals for either their survival, or just the pure love of it all. It always comes down to money as the primary issue; but as stated, a good profit of what’s earned will be used in the reservation of this dying breed. People just need to take responsability for the wellfare of these animals, and know when enough is enough. Stop complaining about the care and cost for these animals. Can’t afford one? Then don’t buy one; but admire them. If you can, kudos. You will probably enjoy having the cat, and feel accomplished in knowing some of your proceads will go toward the tigers, which are close to extinction.

  27. amk Says:

    Not disagreeing with your view point, one bit. Stop creating new breeds and stop cross breeding, for sure!
    It has been my experience, that people who pay that kind of money for an animal, typically don’t let them “roam free”. As a shelter worker, what we would complain about, is the lack of microchipping your cat, whether or not you choose to spay/neuter, the animal. Just because you may intend it to be indoors. Accidents happen. And plenty of people are completely uniformed about their county services. We are constantly told by life long county residents, they didn’t even know they had an animal shelter! We would hope people are better informed and maybe check their local shelters before paying thousands of dollars for a cat or dog. We get many pure breeds in as give ups or strays.

  28. ninata sinama Says:

    cats are useful creatures. they rid houses of pests such as mice that carry diseases. they also kill pidgins and starlings that carry diseases and kill off native birds.I think promoting cats is a great way to help keep america healthy. also the company of some cats can also increase life expectancy in elderly people by promoting an easier life. i am felinologist from the Tokyo University of Pharmacy and Life Science. i have studied felines for 2 years and i know what I’m saying.

  29. ryn59934545 Says:

    that’s cool don’t care what others think its part of the world

  30. edward lindsey Says:

    The initial argument in this post is absurd. If you take it to an extreme there would be no dog or cat breeders of any kind. Responsible breeders provide resources, genetic stability and knowledge about their animals to the table. Creating a breed of cat or dog is common for a specified use. For example the Great pyrenes dog was created by taking a mastiff breed and blending it with a sheep dog so you would get an excellent guard dog and shepherd for the rough pyrenean winter. The Borzoi was created by blending a a greyhound with a russian sheep dog like a collie. the result was a skilled coursing hunter who could withstand the Russian winter. The list goes on and on. If raising awareness about the plight of the wild tiger is the purpose of the toyger breed then it is a noble cause indeed. Fanciers can buy one and donate to the cause. They will be reminded everyday by their pet of the cause and probably will donate more and make others aware. How in the world is that wrong?

  31. Dana Says:

    Um…..keep trying to save the world. There are probably less than a few thousand toygers in existence, which doesn’t mean anything in the scheme of “cats on the rampage” and probably most of them are neuter or spay…secondly, many people who get toygers may not have considered cats good pets before they saw the toyger (it is different in person, let me tell you)…which could lead them to loving cats in general, which may lead to them rescuing a cat(s) someday…you cannot paint such things with a broad brush….Oh and another thing, there are more tigers in back-yards in America than there are left in the wild….maybe this breed of cat will help these ignorant folks get off of the tiger crack.


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