The Korat made it to the preserved records of the Bangkok National Library called “Tamra Maew” or The Cat-Book of Poems. It is a manuscript depicting seventeen cats, whose ownership brings good fortune, and six that are said to be omens. The Korat was listed under the good luck cats. The collection of poems is said to be traced back 600 years ago, which makes the Korat one of the ancient breeds.
The Korat was first introduced in America in 1959. Two Korats named Nara and Darra were offered by a Thai breeder to the Johnsons. The breeder received the cat as a gift when he retired from the Foreign Service in Thailand. The pair was brought by the wife, Mrs Jean Johnson, to the US. Since then, there were many Korat cats that were imported from Thailand, hence, they earned the moniker “silver-blue cat with the Thai passport”.
There were instances where the Korat was crossed with the Siamese. However, kittens having no blue coats were never registered as Korats as they do not fit the same descriptions as the original breed. Nevertheless, the Korats may produce Siamese or lilac kittens over the years because of the crossbreeding in the past.
In 1965, a breed club was founded to ensure a breeding standard for the Korats. A year later, they were awarded a Championship status in the US. The breed was then recognised by cat associations including The Cat Fanciers Association. The Korats made its first appearance in the UK in 1972, and in 1984, the breed was awarded another Championship status by the GCCF.
These strikingly silver blue cats may have gained popularity over the years, but the breed remains rare even in Thailand. After the establishment of the breed standard with a policy of no outcrossing, they became known as the “natural” blue coated cats.