A cat with a very gentle temperament, Birman cat is the ideal companion for all members of the family. It’s appreciated for Its calm, Its delicacy, but also for Its playful side which is expressed quite often and Its great tenderness, sometimes bordering on hyper-attachment.
It’s medium in height and has a gorgeous, silky mid-length robe and stunning deep blue eyes. All associated with the white gloves that adorn its paws and which are part of the physical specificities of the breed.
Its origins are debated, but it is admitted that it was in France that the Sacred race of Burma was created.
History of the breed
Also called Burmese , the Birman cat should not be confused with the Burmese. The historical origins of this breed of cat are unclear. Various theories are advanced depending on the sources.
According to one of them, more mystical, it was born from a miraculous event that occurred a long time ago in a Khmer temple. All the cats that lived there would have seen their appearance totally transformed after one of them, possessing a white robe, asked the goddess Tsun-Kyan-Kse to resuscitate Its master, a monk who had just been murdered.
The felines in question would have received a golden coat, blue eyes, and brown paws. Only the feet would have retained their white color.
According to other leads, more down to earth, the Birman is the result of a cross between a Persian and a Siamese female with white feet. The couple were reportedly imported by boat to France from the Burmese temple of Lao Tsun.
The male would have lost Its life during the trip, but not the female. She gave birth to kittens, including a seal point female called Poupée de Maldapour.
The Birman cat was near extinction at the end of the Second World War, but numbers have been gradually restored.
- Its body: medium in size, rather long, and characterized by good musculature. The back is straight, the neckline muscular, the legs of medium height and sturdy, the feet large and round.
- Its hair: mid-length, shorter on the face, and longer on the back and sides, silky, forming a collar. The outer coat is associated with a fine undercoat.
- Its color: all colors except admitted, but only solid and white, tabby and white, silver/smoke and white patterns are accepted. The paws must have white gloves.
- Its head: triangular in shape but with rounded contours, medium size, rather large. Without stop, the forehead is a little rounded, the nose arched, and the muzzle broad.
- Its eyes: large in size, almost round in shape, set wide apart and blue in color.
- Its ears : medium in size with rounded ends.
- Its tail: of medium length, in accordance with the proportions of the body.
Behavior and Characters
A cat with a very calm temperament, the Birman is an excellent companion for the whole family, including children. It also gets along quite well with other animals, including dogs.
Although quiet, It also knows how to be active and very playful when It wants. Extremely cuddly and affectionate towards Its owner, Its attachment can sometimes cause It to become clingy.
It’s, in fact, the type to follow Its master absolutely everywhere. The Birman also has a reputation for being a very talkative cat.
The Birman cat adapts perfectly to apartment living. This does not prevent It from appreciating the fact of having a secure exterior at Its disposal, allowing It to express Its instincts as an explorer. It also likes to hunt when It has the chance.
Health & Maintenance
Overall, the health of the Birman is rather solid, the breed is predisposed to certain diseases:
- The hypertrophic cardiomyopathy: cardiac muscle hypertrophy
- The polycystic kidney disease (PKD) presence of multiple cysts in the kidneys compressing them and leading to a kidney failure
- The Mucopolysaccharidosis VI: genetic disease whose cause is the abnormal accumulation of glycosaminoglycans in the cells
In addition, the cat can suffer from urinary problems due to too high a concentration of urea or creatine in its urine.
The older Birman cat can also have a tendency to gain weight if they are not given the right diet. The vet will help choose the right diet.
Hypoallergenic Breed: No
The life expectancy of a Sacred of Burma is between 14 and 17 years .
The maintenance of the Birman does not pose any particular problem. This cat needs a good brushing done carefully once a week, in order to prevent tangles and to keep the coat and skin clean.
The brushings must become more frequent during molting. They are then ideally to be done every day. The goal is to help the cat to remove dead hair and reduce the formation of hairballs.
The eyes and ears are also to be monitored and cleaned regularly, as are the teeth which must be brushed once a week.