Tonkinese breed was first created by crossing Burmese and Siamese cats. This is also called Tonks, Tonkinois or Tonkinesen. The name has its origins from the name of the gulf bordering China and Vietnam called, Gulf of Tonkin.
This was bred by Milan Greer, a cat expert who wanted to make a dedicated program for breeding this feline. This was also referred to as ‘The Golden Siamese’. The first breeding of this variety was done between a female chocolate point Siamese and a male Burmese. Greer continued this for five generations. Once he was assured of the stability of the breed, he passed the breeding over to the other professionals.
Edith Lux continued the breeding and is believed to be responsible for coining the name ‘Tonkinese’. It was in 1965 that efforts of cat breeder Conroy in Canada bore fruits and the breed was registered with the Canadian Cat Association.
In the 1990s, this was registered with the American Societies and by 1991 by the GCCF as well. Many associations refused to accept its registry owing it to the breeding program.
According to the genetic proof, when a Tonkinese was bred with another of the same breed, the result was not a pure breed of Tonkinese. The percentage probability was that 50 percent of the kittens could be Tonkinese, while 25 percent could be Burmese and 25 percent could be Siamese.
Many breeders also argue that the Burmese cat which started the breed of Burmese cats in America was actually Tonkinese. The beauty of this breed along with its sociable nature is making it increasingly popular amongst the cat lovers for a pet.
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