The Birman cat is a beautiful semi long haired cat of legend and mystery. There is no clear record behind the origins of the Birman cat, but it is believed to have originated in Burma where they were considered sacred, the companion cat of the Kittah preists.
The modern history of the Birman is almost as mysterious as its legendary origin. What is known for certain is that around 1919, a pair of Birman cats, a male and female was brought from Burma to France. The male cat did not survive the long journey, but the female, Sita, did survive and was pregnant. From this small foundation, the Birman became established in the western world with the French recognising the breed in 1925. The Birman became recognised in England as a separate breed in 1966 and by The Cat Fanciers' Association in 1967.
The ideal Birman is a large, strongly built, elongated and stocky cat, neither svelte nor cobby. They are colour pointed cats with long, silky hair and four pure white feet. The hair is not as thick as the Persian cat, and is of a texture that doesn't mat consequently requiring very little grooming. The coat colour is light, preferably with a golden cast. The very distinctive white feet known as gloves and laces are ideally symmetrical.
The Birman personality is loving, gentle, active and playful with a docile, quiet demeanour and a soft-spoken voice. Birmans also have a strong people orientation. Owners of Birman cats find them to be very affectionate and social cats, having been bred as companion cats for many years. They love spending time with their humans and take an intelligent interest in everything that their humans do. Birmans also get along very well with other pet animals.
The Birman comes in blue, chocolate, lilac and seal points. The points on the face, legs and tail are similar to the Siamese and colour pointed Persian colour patterns. Some associations also accept red, cream, tortie and lynx points while the International Cat Association accepts many other point colours, including cinnamon and fawn. Eyes are found round and blue with a sweet expression.
Birman Cat Club - UK UK based Birman Cat Club with articles, breed standards and breeders directory.
National Birman Fanciers CFA club devoted to the Birman.
Birman Cat Club of the UK Breed and club information.
Northern Birman Cat Club GCCF Affiliated British Cat Club specializing in the Birman.
Birman Cat by Karen Cummings, Karen Commings.
Birman Cats : Everything About Acquisition, Care, Nutrition, Breeding, Health Care, and Behaviour by Phil Maggitti, Michele Earle-Bridges.
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