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Birman

Birman
A majestic feline with a mysterious origin - that's one way to describe Birman cats. From their beautiful semi-long coat to their distinct sapphire-blue eyes, everything about Birmans is royal! They're not just elegant cats; they have one of the most muscular builds among other cat breeds! Birmans are a highly intelligent and fun-loving cat breed. They love attention - a lot of it and are suitable for almost all families. Birmans are kid-friendly cats who tend to be very involved members of any family that they're a part of. Birmans come with a unique look with many different colors and patterns. However, one distinct feature is that all the Birman cats have blue eyes and white feet. They're loosely related to the Siamese and Korat cats, although they don't have a lot in common. If you're a fan of chatty cats with soft voices, then these royal felines can be just the thing for you!

Which Homes Are Best

Perhaps the best feature about Birmans is that they're highly social animals. These super friendly cats get along very well with other animals and the children in the house, so it's safe to say that any secured home is suitable for keeping a Birman cat. They are territorial at times, so don't be surprised if you see your pet Birman fighting with other stray cats every once in a while! The fun-loving nature of these animals will keep your children busy- something working parents always look for!

Lifespan

A Birman cat generally has a lifespan of 9-15 years. But that depends on many factors like exercise, diet, health issues, and overall living environment. There have been exceptions where Birman cats have lived up to 20 years. The problem with Birmans is that they can become overweight easily if there's a lack of exercise, so make sure your Birman gets their daily dose of physical activity!

Average Size

These cats are medium/large in general, as both males and females can weigh up to 12 pounds on average when they reach adulthood. They can grow up to 8-10 inches in height and 15-18 inches in length. While they may not have the highest length or height, Birmans have a stocky body shape that makes them look quite healthy all the time.

Breed Background

Breed Origin

The origin of the Birman cat breed is still quite unclear. There are a lot of folklore, tales, and legends regarding their origin, the most notable one being that Birmans were temple cats in the temples of Burma and were directly connected to their deities. However, we can be sure of one thing - they originated from somewhere in Myanmar.

Original Gene Pool

There are a lot of theories regarding the original gene of Birmans, but we can't say for sure if they're a mixed or a rare breed. The most common theory about them is that they're a cross of Siamese and Persian cats, but how these two breeds came together and who initiated their mating remains a mystery.

Breed Founder

Looking back at history, Birman cats were first put in the spotlight by two Frenchman, Gordon Russell and Auguste Pavie, who aided some priests during their visit to Burma back in 1919. The priests rewarded them with a couple of beautiful temple cats, and they took them back to France. The two cats gave birth to many kittens, and within the next few years, Birman cats were a trendy pet in France. Birman came from 'Sacre de Birmanie,' a French name given by Pavie and Russell. Birmans were imported to the US in 1959, and they finally got recognized by the CFA in 1967.

Appearance

These felines are unique in every way. From the cream-color long coat with contrasting points to the pure white gloves on their feet - Birmans are a treat to watch!

Description

Birmans have medium to long silky coats alongside pointed patterns like Siamese cats. They have a rounded, broad head with blue eyes and medium-sized ears. Altogether, the face of a Birman gives a sweet, happy expression all the time. The feline has four snow-white feet that people sometimes confuse for gloves or mittens! These are large/medium cats with a stocky and muscular build that make them quite powerful. Because of their strong build - Birmans can fight well against other felines, although they tend not to. Their thick coat comes with a little undercoat, so you won't have to worry much about excessive shedding. Birman cats come with many different point colors in their coat. The most notable point colors are chocolate, cream, blue, lilac, etc.

Personality

Birman cats have similarities with the Siamese cat breed in terms of pointed patterns, but while Siamese cats do make a lot of noise, Birmans are pretty gentle and don't fuss a lot about anything unless it's imperative. These are quiet and docile cats that crave attention and affection from people. They're not the bossy type like the Siamese - all they want is to be adored, and that's all! They might be gentle and relatively quiet, but that doesn't mean they're not smart. As a matter of fact, these felines are curious and intelligent animals that love to explore places around them. You might find this cat in weird places like on top of your car or the top shelf of your wardrobe! Birmans communicate in a rather soft tone and don't demand a lot of things from their fellow humans apart from food and adoration. You'll find them frequently sitting or sleeping on your lap all the time!

Indoors or Outdoors

Birman cats are usually laid back in nature, so they prefer to be indoors most of the time. However, they do love to go outdoors once in a while, especially when they notice stray cats hanging around their territory!

Noisiness

They're naturally quiet cats and don't meow much unless there's an absolute necessity. So, new Birman owners can rest assured - they won't bother their owners much while they're sleeping!

Interaction

Affectionate, sweet, and absolutely adorable - these are the three words that came to our minds while describing Birmans. They might look all majestic and royal, but in reality, they're highly social towards people, especially children. If introduced in the right manner, Birmans can live quite happily with other pets too!

Intelligence

They might be a bit docile and quiet, but Birmans are really smart when playing and exploring new areas. These cats love to play with plastic balls or plushy toys. They're pretty smart and caring too, and if you can train them from an early age - they can do a lot of tasks all on their own! The adult Birman cat usually wanders around new places and is generally excited to find new friends.

Playfulness

Nothing makes Birman kittens happier than the "chase the laser" game. Just point the laser light towards the floor or the wall and see how they chase it and play! Kittens also love movable toys, plastic balls, and stuffed dolls. The adult Birman are relatively less playful, as they prefer hanging out in new areas and exploring them. Birmans are a very curious breed of cats and can be labeled as 'moderately active' among cats. They love climbing on cat trees and playing with live animals too.

Friendliness

Birmans are as social as cats can get. These felines are very welcoming towards human beings, and their only nemesis would be stray cats who try to invade their private space!

Children

A Birman cat can be a perfect choice for families with little children and/or pet dogs. Birmans absolutely love the attention from children and can be friends with your pet dog too! Children play dress-up with Birman, making them wear cute little dresses - and the cat seems elated by that!

Other Animals

Birmans are calm felines that can adapt to most types of homes out there in the world. Playing chase with other cats or dogs is their favorite game where they take turns and run around the house. Birmans don't prefer being the single pet in the house as they might feel lonely and bored if kept alone. They're not very picky about companions, either - dogs or other animals are fine with them up until they attack the Birmans!

Breed Predisposed Ailments

This breed of cat doesn't have any significant breed-related issues, but they need to be assessed by vets on a regular basis. Dental cares are necessary as these felines are susceptible to oral illnesses like gingivitis. You'll also need to do regular checks because obesity is quite common among Birmans.
  • Gingivitis
  • Obesity
  • Hyperthyroidism
  • Constipation and urinary tract infection

Grooming

Birmans are blessed with little to no undercoats, which is why the chances of them forming mats are pretty low. However, you'll have to comb the coat every week with a comb. Trimming their nails and cleaning their teeth is also necessary.

Brushing

The cats have medium-long coats, which might make one think they'll require regular brushing. Interestingly enough, this isn't the case with Birmans as they're pretty easy to take care of and only require brushing once/twice a week. This is mostly because of their single-layered coat. Just comb or brush their coat gently, and they'll be clean in no time!

Ears

Ear infections can be critical for any felines, and Birmans are no exception. This is why you must check their ears every two weeks or so. If you notice any foul odor or an unusual amount of redness on their ear, this might be a sign of ear infection, and you must take them to a vet as early as possible. Cleaning their ears every week can reduce the chance of any infections. Simply use cotton balls or soft cloths with a cat-friendly solution and clean the ears at least once in two weeks if you don't have the time. Cotton swabs are a no-go when it comes to cats.

Finances

Birmans aren't the most common cats in the world, and it's pretty evident in their pricing. Cats don't usually come with a common price tag; it depends on the seller, the location, and the cat's condition. It's the same for Birman cats

Cost of Kittens

Normal Birmans from relatively uncommon breeding farms will cost you from $600-$1000. However, quality pedigree Birmans, ones that come from reputable breeding farms, will cost a lot more, on around $1500-$3000. Yes, they seem costly considering the price, but trust us on this - having a Birman cat is so worth it!

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • An excellent option for people having a cat as a pet for the first time
  • A very social and active cat
  • They don't make a lot of noise
  • Friendly with other pets and children

Cons

  • This cat breed isn't Hypoallergenic
  • Birmans are relatively more expensive than similar cat breeds
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Final Thoughts

Body 

Birman cats have a muscular and powerful body with an athletic demeanor. They might not be the biggest of cats out there, but they sure are quite heavy and have a stocky body type.

Head 

These felines have a broad, rounded head with a super-cute small nose. The head is perfectly proportionate to their body.

Ears 

They have medium to small ears. The ears have shades of two different colors.

Eyes 

Birmans are blessed with distinctive blue irises, a signature trait among their breeds. As a matter of fact, they’re born with blue eyes, and the color remains the same throughout their lifespan.

Legs and Paws 

All four legs of these cats are white with snow-white feet – a feature that makes them look like they’re wearing mittens while walking.

Tail

Birmans have a beautiful, thick tail that is medium in length. The tail usually has the same color as the coat. 

Coat 

Their long and silky coats are surely a beautiful feature, although the coat isn’t as long as Ragdolls or Persians. They have little to no undercoats.

Color 

Birman cats usually come in blue, seal, chocolate, lilac, and blue coats. On rare occasions, they might have tabby or tortoiseshell colors. 

Hypoallergenic 

Unfortunately, Birmans are not hypoallergenic, so if you’re allergic to cats, it might not be a good decision to have a Birman as a pet. But you sure can try!