Pet Keen is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you. Learn more.

Home > Cats > Cat Breeds > Suphalak Cat: Breed Info, Pictures, Temperament, & Traits

Suphalak Cat: Breed Info, Pictures, Temperament, & Traits

Suphalak Thai cat

The Suphalak is a rare sight to behold. This cat breed is endemic to Thailand and hasn’t made a splash outside of Asia. So, importing a cat from Thailand isn’t a viable solution to the problem of their rarity.

Breed Overview


9 – 13 inches


8 – 15 pounds


12 – 20 years



Suitable for:

Families, singles, new cat owners, experienced cat owners


Intelligent, social, playful, friendly

Those privileged enough to meet a Suphalak in their life will be able to enjoy the company of one of the most unique and heralded cats in the world. The Suphalak isn’t just intelligent, playful, and friendly (though they are all those things), but they’re also thought to bring good fortune to people who are kind to them!

Suphalaks have gotten a fair bit of attention in modern media because of their rarity, and people are scrambling to get a glimpse of their gorgeous coats and playful attitudes.

Suphalak Cat Characteristics

High-energy cat will need a lot of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy and healthy, while low-energy cats require minimal physical activity. It’s important when choosing a cat to make sure their energy levels match your lifestyle or vice versa.
Easy-to-train cats are more willing and skilled at learning prompts and actions quickly with minimal training. Cats that are harder to train are usually more stubborn and will require a bit more patience and practice.
Some cat breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, and some more than others. This doesn’t mean that every cat will have these issues, but they have an increased risk, so it’s important to understand and prepare for any additional needs they may require.
Some breeds, due to their size or their breeds' potential genetic health issues, have shorter lifespans than others. Proper exercise, nutrition, and hygiene also play an important role in the lifespan of your pet.
Some cat breeds are more social than others, both towards humans and other animals. More social cats have a tendency to rub up on strangers for scratches, while less social cats shy away and are more cautious, even potentially aggressive. No matter the breed, it’s important to socialize your cat and expose them to lots of different situations.


Suphalak Kittens  

Suphalak kittens are rare, even in Thailand, where they’re endemic. Getting a true, purebred Suphalak will require you to import the cat from Thailand, as only one Suphalak has ever been exported from Thailand. If your heart is truly set on a Suphalak cat, make sure to do your research on the cat breed, find ethical breeders in Thailand, and expect high prices due to the rarity of the breed and the cost of transportation.

Suphalak cats are known for being very playful and energetic. They’re highly intelligent and make a great fit for experienced cat owners since they can have a strong personality. Keep reading the Suphalak’s full guide to see if this cat is the one for you!

Temperament and Intelligence of the Suphalak

The Suphalak is intelligent and friendly. Like many other Eastern cat breeds, the Suphalak is very affectionate and vocal. The Suphalak may seem like they’re trying to converse with you as they “talk” to their owners.

The Suphalak is very high energy as well. So you won’t be able to keep your Suphalak busy with just a few stuffed mice. Instead, you’ll need to dedicate time and energy to play with your Suphalak, or they may become destructive out of boredom.

Suphalaks need a lot of attention. They won’t be happy with a home where they’re left alone all day. One option is to get your cat a housemate, but it is better if they have you around to interact with as well.

Are Suphalaks Good for Families? 👪

Suphalaks make good family pets if you can afford one. Their high energy means that they’ll be able to keep up with your kids during playtime, and since they’re playful, affectionate, and social, they’ll be up to play whenever your kids want to.

Singles who work from home make good owners for Suphalaks as well. However, Suphalaks need a lot of space to run around. So, if you live in a smaller apartment, consider taking your cat out on a leash or getting an exercise wheel.

Do Suphalaks Get Along with Other Pets?

Suphalaks tend to get along well with other cats and dogs since they get lonely quickly and enjoy the company. Just ensure that you spend enough time one-on-one with your Suphalak to avoid any jealousy that may arise.

Additionally, while Suphalaks don’t have a high prey drive, they have an exceptionally playful attitude, and they will chase anything that they can to try and play with it. So, if you have a bird or small animals, keep them away from your Suphalak for their well-being.


Things to Know When Owning a Suphalak

Food & Diet Requirements

Suphalaks don’t have any specific dietary needs that need to be addressed by their owners. However, you must feed them high-quality food that features the high-protein levels Suphalaks need as cats.

In addition to a high-protein diet, Suphalaks may require more food than average for a cat. Since they’re so active, they’ll need an appropriately large amount of food to sustain that activity level.

Giving your cat a combination of wet and dry food will ensure that your cat has enough moisture in their diet to sustain their high activity levels. Cats often forget to drink enough water on their own and including moisture in their diet through their food is necessary to preserve kidney function.

Exercise 🐈

Supahalaks require a lot of exercise to be happy. They are high-energy cats that need to be able to get their energy out somewhere. This means you’ll need to provide your Suphalak with ample space to run around, toys, and plenty of playtime to keep them from becoming bored.

Training 🧶

Suphalaks should quickly take to the most common cat training, like litter boxes and scratching posts. Then, they can be trained to walk on a leash and go on walks around the neighborhood if you don’t have enough space for them inside your home.

Suphalaks are highly intelligent, so you can also teach them to perform tricks. But, first, you’ll have to figure out what motivates your cat and provide them with proper motivation and rewards when they perform well.

Grooming ✂️

Suphalaks have a short coat that doesn’t require excessive grooming. However, brushing your cat twice a week will ensure that their coat looks glossy and silky at all times.

You’ll also want to ensure that your Suphalak’s nails stay trimmed. They’re very active and can accidentally damage their surroundings with their claws if they aren’t trimmed down.

Health and Conditions 🏥

Suphalaks are a relatively new breed in the Western world. So, we don’t have much information about their overall health outcomes since we haven’t had much time to perform empirical studies on them.

Still, Suphalak owners should keep their eyes peeled for common illnesses found in cats like feline lower urinary tract disease and cardiomyopathy.

Male vs Female

The most notable difference between male and female Suphalaks is their size. Males tend to be a little bit taller, longer, and heavier than females. Aside from this, there are not many differences to speak of.


3 Little-Known Facts About the Suphalak Cat

1. Suphalaks are thought to bring wealth and good fortune to their owners.

Thai legends published in the Tamra Maew, or The Book of Cat Poems, posit that the Suphalak brings wealth and good fortune to their owner. This legend is also the reason that Suphalaks are so rare.

2. Legend has it that Suphalaks were kidnapped to bring fortune to an invading king.

According to Thai legends, back when the Ayutthaya kingdom inhabited the land, it was invaded by the Burmese in 1767. During the invasion by the king of Burma was introduced to the legends of the Tamra Maew, and ordered his soldiers to capture all the Suphalak cats and bring them to Burma with the other treasures they’d taken from the nation.

3. The International Maew Boran Association (TIMBA) is working to bolster the population of Suphalaks.

In 2014, TIMBA announced that it would work to preserve the Suphalak’s population by boosting domestic breeders and aiding the introduction of the breed to other nations, especially those in the West.


Final Thoughts

Suphalaks may be rare, but they’re gorgeous cats and delightful to be around. So, it’s heartwarming to see an active effort to preserve the breed by TIMBA. Hopefully, their efforts will bear fruit, and the species will see a successful introduction to the West and propagate a substantial population both in and out of Thailand.

Featured Image Credit: Nattakorn Suphatheera, Shutterstock

Our vets

Want to talk to a vet online?

Whether you have concerns about your dog, cat, or other pet, trained vets have the answers!

Our vets