Burmese cats lived for
centuries in Burma, Thailand and Malaya. In late 1800s they were known
in England as Chocolate Siamese, but because they were not
favoured they gradually died out in England and Europe. The ancestry of
Burmese cats can be traced back to one cat named Wong Mau, who was
a brown female from Burma and arrived to San Francisco in the early
1930's to Dr. Joseph Thompson.
breeding to Siamese, the Burmese was established as a distinct breed.
Lighter coloured kittens were occasionally produced and eventually the
American breeders requested cognition from CFA for these "dilute" colours;
first, as another breed named Malayan, then later as a dilute division of
The Burmese Appearance
The Burmese is
a strong, athletic and elegant short haired cat that carry
surprising weight for its size and has often
been described as "brick wrapped in silk." It has a fine,
close, even, and glossy coat . Their coats are very short,
satin-like in texture, and generally require little grooming
other than daily petting. At maturity males are large, the
females are more delicate and graceful, and the difference in
weight between them may be two or three pounds.
The Burmese is a compactly built cat with a small round head and
wide-set eyes which are yellow or golden. A Burmese's tail is
tapered. The European Burmese is an elegant yet not so fragile
cat. It is medium sized, has good bone structure and muscular
development and very expressive eyes. The major difference
between these breeds is the colours:
Chocolate Burmese Cat
The Burmese cat has ten main
recognised colors in Australia, United Kingdom and Europe
Brown - the original
Burmese color, a rich warm seal brown. Blue - a soft blue-gray with a silver sheen. Chocolate - a warm milk chocolate. Lilac - a pale delicate dove gray with a pinkish cast. Red - The fur color is red-orange on the torso and melon-orange on
the outer coat Cream - cream with a distinct bloom on the head and back, giving a
powdered effect. Brown tortie - brown with shades of red. Blue tortie - Blue with shades of cream. Chocolate tortie - Chocolate with shades of red. Lilac tortie - lilac with shades of cream.
Sable, the same as
Champagne, the same as 'Chocolate' above
Platinum, the same a 'Lilac' above
Blue, the same as 'Blue' above
In America many cat
associations recognize the four principal colors (i.e., sable, blue,
chocolate/champagne, lilac/platinum) for Burmese cats. Only a few
organizations, recognize the remaining colors. In many American
associations, additional colors, as well as certain other physical
features, characterize the European (or "Foreign") Burmese.
Burmese Cat Personality
The Burmese is very friendly inquisitive cat with an outgoing, loving
nature - this is why Burmese are one of the most popular breeds. It has been said that the Burmese are more like dogs than cats
in their behaviour. When encouraged from kitten hood, they will fetch.
They will greet you at the door when you come home and comfort you when
you are ill or unhappy - they give unconditional love.
The Burmese is an upfront cat, not left out of where it is all happening.
It's a participator - alert, curious, intelligent, interfering and
gregarious: you cannot ignore it! When you sit down, the Burmese thinks
you are offering him a warm and comfortable bed. When you kneel to weed
the garden, the Burmese will use your back as a vantage -point from which
to observe the environment. When you do your daily chores in the house,
the Burmese will assume that your shoulder is the best place from where
tasks can be assisted.
The Burmese likes to explore the environment. Anything that is
mechanical and moves makes a good game for the Burmese. They understand
door handles very quickly, and the owners often have
fit door levers upside down. Height is not deterrent. Very muscular, the
Burmese loves to jump on the tops of doors and surprise unwary visitors.
Nevertheless, Burmese do settle down as they grow out of adolescence and
they can be trained by saying NO! kindly and firmly, but you need to start
early and may need to persist, because the Burmese are very strong-minded
and they effortlessly rule their families.
Even though the Burmese is an ideal breed for families, children and older
people - for those who want a less interactive pet, one that will spend all
its time in relaxation, the Burmese is not the right choice. Also, the
social nature of the Burmese does mean that they need company - human and
feline. Toys cannot replace this company. Therefore it is important that, when
the owner is at work, to buy two Burmese kittens, ideally from the same litter. That
way the stress of moving is halved and the cats' temperament is much more
relaxed and loving on long run. On the other hand, if they are left in the
home on their own they will want to play all night and disturb the owner's
sleep, also they will find something to occupy their time. Unfortunately,
what they consider fun we call destructive. This principle applies to all
cats, but with the more intelligent, social and active breed such as
Burmese, it is particularly important that they have company. A happy
Burmese is a blessing to the home; an unhappy one can disrupt the household.