Birman Breed Summary
Sweet-natured, Patient, Affectionate, Loyal
Birmans are gentle, playful and affectionate cats – so it’s no wonder that these cats have become popular companions and family pets in the UK and across the world! Known as the ‘Sacred Cat of Burma’, these kitties have striking blue eyes, a beautiful silky coat and a noble look about them. A relatively quiet cat, the Birman communicates in a soft voice – mainly to remind their humans when it’s time for dinner or a cuddle on the sofa! This cat enjoys being held and will relax comfortably into your arms. Birmans are found to be immensely attached to their family members and love to follow them from room to room. They're well suited to elderly people due to their placid nature and they also gel well with children and other pets – they’re ideal for those who want a loving and gentle cat to care for. Fun Fact: Legend has it that the Birman descended from Burmese temple cats who were raised by Kittah priests.
|Lifespan||12 – 16 Years|
|Height (at the withers)||Males and Females: 20cm – 25cm|
|Weight||Males and Females: 4kg – 5kg|
|Coat||Semi-long, soft silky coat|
|Colour||Colour-pointed with contrasting white ‘gloves’ or ‘socks’ on each paw. Their colours range from frost, blue, chocolate, seal, red, cream, cinnamon, lilac and fawn|
|Common health issues||Congenital hypotrichosis, corneal dermoid, spongiform degeneration, shaking/trembling (in kittens)|
|Other Names||Sacred Birman, Sacred Cat of Burma|
Birmans cats are known for their cool but loving personality. Gentle by nature, these calm kitties like to spend a lot of time relaxing in the house and as they’re quite the private breed, they’re known to attach themselves to one person in purr-ticular. Due to their friendly, somewhat docile temperament, it’s best they aren’t left to roam outside as their sociable, welcoming nature can backfire and prove dangerous, especially with other cats and dogs! These cats aren’t particularly vocal, but they'll make themselves known when it’s time for some attention or dinner time comes-a-calling. Male Birmans are also said to be chattier in nature. While not as active as some other cat breeds, Birmans can be playful and lively, a trait that sticks with them into their senior years. As they're easy to train and have a laidback personality, Birmans have been proven to be suitable for everyone and tend to get along well with the elderly, children and other pets.
Known as the ‘Sacred Cat of Burma’, the Birman is an ancient breed of cat whose true origin is a bit of a mystery! The history of this breed is steeped in legend and it's believed that they were given their gorgeous coat and piercing blue eyes as a reward from a Goddess, because a temple cat was paw-ticularly loyal and dedicated to a priest. The legend further tells of how priests who pass away come back as temple cats. Although just a legend, there's evidence of similar looking cats who've been around for a long time, which makes it plausible that this kitty isn't a newly developed breed. In the 1930s, many seal-point cats were seen living in temple ruins in Burma and although feral, they were fed and protected by locals who believed in the legend of the Birman, as they thought their lives would be in danger if any harm came to these cats. More recently, photographs of similar looking cats have been found in a shop in Burma, while cats resembling the breed were also found in the shop’s garden. In 1988, other cat breeders visited Burma and found photos of very similar looking cats. As these cats were not allowed to enter Burma because of political unrest, there’s a strong belief that the Birman does in fact originate from Burma and could therefore be an ancient breed. First recognised in France back in the mid-twenties, it wasn’t until 1966 that the breed was finally accepted by the GCCF. Today, these cats remain popular companions due to their kind, placid natures and adorable looks.