A brown sokoke looking at the camera


Sokoke cats are a rare and unique breed of cat that originate from the coastal region of Kenya. Known for their distinctive appearance and playful personalities, these cats have captured the hearts of many cat lovers around the world.


Sokoke cats have a distinct appearance, with their short, smooth coats marked with a unique pattern of dark stripes and spots. The pattern is often described as being similar to that of a wild cat, which is fitting as the breed is thought to have originated from a wild ancestor. Their coat is usually a warm brown color, although some cats may have a slightly reddish or greyish tinge.

Sokoke cats have a medium-sized build with a muscular, athletic body. They have a long, lean tail and large, pointed ears. Their eyes are a bright green or yellow color, which contrasts beautifully with their coat.

One of the most distinctive features of the Sokoke cat is their webbed feet, which are thought to be an adaptation to their coastal environment. This trait allows them to swim and climb with ease, making them excellent hunters and playful companions.


The Sokoke cat is believed to be one of the oldest and most purebred of all domestic cat breeds. It is thought to have originated from a wild ancestor that was found in the Sokoke forest, which is located in the coastal region of Kenya. The breed is also sometimes referred to as the “Sokoke Forest Cat.”

It wasn’t until the 1970s that the breed was recognized as a distinct type of cat. In 1978, a woman named Jeni Slater discovered a Sokoke cat in the forest while on a research expedition. She was struck by the cat’s unique appearance and brought it back to her home in Nairobi.

Over the next several years, Slater worked to establish a breeding program for Sokoke cats. She was able to find more cats in the wild, and through selective breeding, she was able to establish a breed standard for the Sokoke cat.

Today, the breed is still quite rare, with only a few hundred cats in existence around the world. In 2003, the Sokoke cat was recognized by The International Cat Association (TICA) as an official breed.


Sokoke cats are known for their playful and affectionate personalities. They are intelligent and curious, always exploring their surroundings and seeking out new adventures. They are also highly social and love to be around their human companions.

Despite their active and playful nature, Sokoke cats are also known for their calm and gentle demeanor. They are not typically vocal cats and prefer to communicate through body language and affectionate gestures.

Sokoke cats are also highly adaptable and can do well in a variety of environments, including homes with children and other pets. They are also known to be quite independent and self-sufficient, making them a great choice for busy households.


Sokoke cats are generally healthy and do not require any special care beyond the standard requirements for all cats. They are typically low-maintenance when it comes to grooming, as their short coats do not require much brushing or trimming.

Like all cats, Sokoke cats require a balanced diet that meets their nutritional needs. It is important to provide them with fresh water at all times and to keep their food and water bowls clean.

Sokoke cats are also highly active and require plenty of opportunities for exercise and play. Providing them with plenty of toys and play structures can help keep them engaged and entertained.

One potential health concern for Sokoke cats is hip dysplasia, a condition that affects the hips and can lead to mobility issues. While the condition is not common in Sokoke cats, it is important to work with a reputable breeder who screens their cats for this and other health issues.


Sokoke cats are a rare breed, it can be difficult to find them available for adoption. However, it is always worth checking with local animal shelters and rescue organizations to see if any Sokoke cats are in need of a forever home.

If you are interested in adopting a Sokoke cat, it is important to do your research and find a reputable breeder or rescue organization. Look for a breeder who prioritizes the health and well-being of their cats and who screens their cats for potential health issues.

When adopting a Sokoke cat, it is important to provide them with plenty of love, attention, and opportunities for play and exercise. These cats thrive on interaction with their human companions and will quickly become an important part of the family.

Final words

Sokoke cats are a rare and unique breed with a fascinating history and distinctive appearance. These cats are known for their playful personalities, social nature, and independent spirit. While they require some basic care and attention, they are generally low-maintenance and adaptable, making them a great choice for a variety of households.

Whether you are looking to adopt a Sokoke cat or simply appreciate their beauty and charm, these cats are sure to capture your heart and become a beloved companion for years to come.

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