- Breed name: Burmese cat
- Country of Origin: Burma
- Weight: 5-9 kg
- Life expectancy: 10-15 years
- Burma is a real dog in a cat's body, which dotes on its owner and is ready to follow him on his heels.
- The animal's grace does not fit at all with its impressive mass, which is why cats are called "bricks in a silk robe".
- There are two breed standards – American and European, which differ from each other in appearance.
- Burmese cats retain their playfulness and activity until old age and will not give up chasing a thrown ball.
- The animal subtly senses the mood of the owner, so it will not bother with increased attention or, on the contrary, will make all attempts to cheer up the person.
- Does not require special conditions of maintenance and therefore is suitable even for those who decided to have a cat for the first time.
- Burmese get along well with other pets, if they do not show excessive hostility.
- This breed is a great option for families with children: cats are condescending to overly active games and take part in them as much as possible.
- Animals have high intelligence and are easy to train.
Burmese cat is a short-haired breed with an energetic temperament. It seems that the sun of the Ancient East – the historical homeland of the animal – is still reflected in the honey-golden eyes of the Burmese. The appearance and friendly nature of this elegant beauty will not leave indifferent even avid dog lovers. Prudence, extraordinary intelligence and wisdom distinguish the Burmese cat from its relatives. According to ancient beliefs, this breed brings wealth and happiness to the home of those who managed to become the "copper cat" best friend and loving owner.
History of the Burmese cat breed
The state of Burma (modern Myanmar) has since ancient times been famous for its delightful landscapes and charm inherent only in the countries of Southeast Asia. The pristine nature of the jungle contrasted with the snow–capped mountain peaks, and the white sand of the beaches contrasted with the stone buildings of ancient cities. It was on these mysterious lands that the ancestors of the Burmese breed – one of the most memorable in the world - appeared.
The first mentions of these animals date back to the XII century. Later, cats were awarded individual lines in an ancient book of poetry, which was replenished with new works during the XIV-XVIII centuries. No less vivid evidence of the ancient origin of the burmese are the images in the book of Siamese artists, in which, among all the representatives of the feline family, an animal with the physique and appearance of our oriental beauty stands out vividly.
The Burmese breed was highly revered by the inhabitants of the ancient state. These cats were allowed into temples because they were equated with higher creatures. The monks took care of them in every possible way, thereby demonstrating their commitment to religion and service to the gods. At that time, it was believed that the Burmese cat escorted the soul of its deceased owner to the afterlife, giving him eternal rest at parting. According to another legend, the Burmese brought good luck and wealth, so these cats were acquired exclusively by aristocratic and royal families. Commoners had to be content with more "modest" breeds.
At the end of the XIX century, the paws of Burmese cats first set foot on the lands of Great Britain, where at first the animals were known as black Siamese. Over time, the breed spread to all continents of the world. An interesting fact is that the ancestor of the breed in the form in which we know it was not a purebred specimen at all, but a half-breed of Burmese and Siam . In the first half of the XX century, a retired doctor of the American Navy, Joseph Thompson, got a charming kitten named Wong Mau. The baby has grown into a graceful and royally majestic cat of a reddish-brown color with a dark tan. Admiring the personality and appearance of the pet, Thompson began to search for like-minded people who would contribute to the breeding of a new breed and the creation of its standard. They were scientists from the University of California and enthusiasts from the local felinology club.
Based on the similarity of Wong Mau with a Siamese cat, Joseph Thompson chose the perfect partner for her mating – siamese nicknamed Tai Mau. In the first litter, babies of several colors were born: power point and dark walnut. This meant that Thompson's favorite herself was a half-breed siamese and Burmese breeds: otherwise the marks would not have appeared. However, the chestnut color became the decisive criterion in the selection of kittens for further breeding.
The crossing of the offspring of Wong Mau and Tai Mau "gave" three colors: chocolate with dark tan, brown and sable. Of these, Joseph Thompson liked the latter the most. According to the retired doctor, it was this color that looked the most noble and deserved further development.
The colossal experience of felinologists played a role: in 1934, the world saw the first standard of the Burmese breed. At the same time, three generations of its representatives were registered. Two years later, the American organization CFA registered the Burmese standard. Considering that work on the creation of a new breed began only in 1930, such a rapid success could be considered triumphant.
Burmese cats enjoyed universal love and recognition, but the number of individuals remained very limited. For a wider distribution of the breed , it was decided to cross the Burmese with siamese and other cats whose color slightly resembled Wong Mau. This led to the appearance of a huge number of mestizos, and in 1947 the CFA stopped their registration. Since then, the pedigree of each kitten has been carefully checked: so, it had to include at least three purebred generations.
The ranks of Burmese breeders have significantly thinned, and employees of American nurseries have entered the arena. Thanks to their efforts and organized work on the revival of the breed, in 1957 the registration of Burmese cats was resumed: the number of purebred individuals increased several times. A year later, the UBCF organization began to develop a generally recognized breed standard. The result was achieved in 1959 and has not been changed since then. As for the color, the first CFA registered was brown, later nicknamed sable because of the similarity with the fur of this animal. Long-term crossing turned into the appearance of other coat colors: platinum, blue, golden (champagne).
Burmese cats did not limit themselves to conquering the USA and continued to walk around the world with soft pads of paws. In 1949, three representatives of this breed appeared on the lands of Great Britain and caused universal love and recognition. During the second half of the XX century, clubs and societies of Burmese cat lovers were created every now and then in the Foggy Albion. To increase their number, breeders crossed animals with Siamese breed , which by that time had acquired familiar features. For this reason, there are noticeable differences in the appearance of English and American Burmese. So there was a second breed standard – European. It is not recognized by the CFA, exactly like the American one – by the GCCF organization. Crossing cats belonging to different standards is prohibited.
Having earned the love of America and England, the Burmese breed set foot on the lands of Australia, where it managed to oust the former favorites – brits and Abyssinians - and gain dizzying popularity. In Russia, the first Burmese appeared only at the end of the XX century, but every year they more and more conquer the hearts of cat lovers.
Video: Burmese cat
Appearance of the Burmese cat
Looking at the embodiment of grace and grace in this thin feline body, it is impossible to assume that the burmese are unexpectedly heavy, one has only to pick them up. For this feature, they earned a playful nickname – "bricks wrapped in silk." Cats are always heavier than cats: 4.5-5 kg and 2.5-3.5 kg, respectively.
The Burmese cat belongs to medium-sized shorthair breeds. Belonging to one or another standard determines the appearance of the animal: Americans are stockier in comparison with their relatives from Europe.
Head and skull
The head of the European burmese has a wedge-shaped shape, while the American one is slightly wider. The frontal part of the skull of both representatives of the breed is smoothly rounded. Pronounced flat "sections" in the face or profile are invisible.
Both standards of the Burmese breed are distinguished by a well-developed muzzle, which corresponds to the smooth contours of the head. The transition from the nose to the forehead is pronounced. The cheekbones are clearly visible. A strong chin forms a straight vertical line along with the tip of the nose. The American standard of the Burmese breed is distinguished by a wider and shorter muzzle, but the foot is as outlined as that of the European Burmese.
The triangles of the ears are located far from each other, and their outer side emphasizes the line of the cheeks (uncharacteristic for adult cats). The wide base flows smoothly into softly rounded tips. Due to the slight forward tilt of the ears, the burmese always looks wary.
The eyes of the Burmese cat are set wide apart from each other, quite large and expressive. The slight "oriental" slope of their upper line gives the breed a resemblance to orientals, while the lower one is rounded. The eyes of the burmese shimmer with all shades of yellow – from honey to amber, while a rich golden tone is more preferable. Pay attention to an interesting feature: the older the animal, the less bright the color of its eyes seems.
Jaws and teeth
If we compare the jaws of the Burmese cat, it can be noted that the lower one is more pronounced and therefore clearly visible when the animal is in profile. The bite is correct.
The Burmese breed is characterized by the presence of a long and thin strong neck.
The compact and taut body of a cat is the embodiment of grace combined with the firmness of developed muscles. The strong chest has a rounded shape. The burmese's back is straight from the shoulders to the base of the tail.
Has an average length and no bends. Being not too wide at the base, it tapers to a gently rounded tip.
The limbs of the Burmese cat are proportional to its body. They are relatively thin, of medium length. They end with elegant oval-shaped paws. The number of fingers on the front and back paws varies: five and four, respectively.
Representatives of the Burmese breed are characterized by thin and short hair. It fits snugly to the body of the animal and has practically no undercoat. To the touch – smooth and silky; beautifully shimmers with every graceful movement of the cat.
The upper part of the body of the burmese is darker in comparison with the lower, and this feature does not depend on the color of the animal. An even tone is more preferable, however, both American and European standards allow discreet points on the muzzle, ears, limbs and tail. Kittens and young individuals can boast tiger moire.
Recognized burmese color standards include sable, blue, chocolate, platinum (purple). Now there are various tortoiseshell shades based on them, as well as cream and red colors.
The defects of the Burmese breed include:
- tiger stripes on the limbs of adult cats;
- strongly elongated and oblong muzzle;
- round or oriental eye shape;
- sharp narrowing of the muzzle under the cheekbones;
- noticeable bump on the nose;
- sunken cheeks.
The breed standard also mentions disqualifying signs:
- malocclusion and developed upper jaw;
- green or blue eye shade;
- irregular tail shape;
- white points on wool;
Photo of a Burmese cat
Character of the Burmese cat
Among all cats, you will not find an animal more devoted and cheerful than a burmese. Do not expect to find a calm and restrained character in this breed. If the cat suddenly froze, then know: it's not for long. It is quite possible that in this way your pet is studying the situation and "planning" an entertainment program for the rest of the day. Activity is a constant companion of Burmese cats up to old age. Do not hide your pet's favorite toys in a drawer, referring to her old age. Many elderly Burmese will still give odds to kittens and will happily run after a sunny bunny or a fly that came from nowhere.
Representatives of this breed have gained fame as cats with a dog's soul. They love to spend time with their owners and participate in every moment of their lives, responding to care with boundless tenderness. Between a person and sleeping in an easy chair, the Burmese will not hesitate to choose the first. This cat likes physical contact with the owner. She will gladly follow you on your heels and climb under the covers at night to get her portion of love.
Burmese cats are sensitive to the mood and will take any action in an attempt to bring a smile to your tired face. These animals are reputed to be ardent lovers of intimate "conversations" – and not with their relatives, but with a person. Get ready for the fact that the pet will speak feline, while not taking her curious eyes off you. Her gentle purring will brighten up even the most difficult and unpleasant day.
An interesting feature of Burmese is their different attitude to the owner, depending on gender. Cats tend to love all family members equally, while a cat happily runs into their arms and caresses only their favorite. This is evident in the presence of two different-sex individuals in the house. The cat is destined to become the best friend who will relentlessly follow on your heels and try to smooth out your problems with the pleasant weight of his body. Cats, on the other hand, prefer to adapt to the mood of the owner and never impose themselves if he needs solitude.
The Burmese breed gets along well with other pets. These cats will be able to find a common language even with the most sullen dogs and certainly will not make a parrot their holiday dinner.
Burmese are no less friendly to children. They will never scratch the baby for a careless poke or too strong hugs. Moreover, the Burmese cat itself will take part in the children's game. Her graceful and light jumps delight and often gather all family members who want to admire the flexible beauty. Such attention to the humble person of the Burmese acts as a balm for the soul: the animal will jump even higher, bend even more, wanting to hear sincere exclamations of admiration.
Representatives of this breed cannot stand loneliness, because they constantly need a partner for games. If you spend most of your time away from home, take care of the mental state of the pet. The second Burmese cat is an ideal option. Be sure: the animals will not get bored in your absence, and on their return they will be able to amuse with active games of "catch-up".
Education and training
Among all breeds, Burmese are distinguished by a high level of intelligence, which is confirmed by many owners of these cats. They will easily open a door that is not tightly closed or reach for the switch with their paw to extinguish the big "sun" under the ceiling. With a sincere desire and patience, you can easily teach your pet simple dog commands: "Sit!", "Lie down!" and bring an abandoned toy.
Burmese cats easily get used to the tray and regularly use it as a toilet, so unexpected "bombs" in house slippers and shoes will not lie in wait for you.
Care and maintenance
Representatives of the Burmese breed are completely unpretentious in care. Short hair needs only combing once a week (during molting it is recommended to participate in this procedure). At the same time, you can use a special antistatic agent. There is no need to regularly arrange a "bath day" for your beauty: burmese are very clean by nature and therefore monitor the condition of the coat on their own. You only need to wipe the cat daily with a barely damp cloth or a piece of suede to remove dead hairs and apply a glossy sheen to the silky coat of the animal.
However, if the cat gets dirty somewhere, or you plan to take the first prize at the exhibition, wash the pet with a mild shampoo for shorthair breeds. Do not forget to regularly shorten the claws with a special pruner, if the scratching post does not attract your beauty at all.
Special attention should be paid to feeding the Burmese cat, otherwise you will become a frequent guest of veterinary clinics. It's worth splurging on premium dry food. They contain a complex of vitamins and minerals that will allow the burmese to preserve its noble appearance, and its wool to shimmer beautifully in the light.
It is not recommended to feed the animal the same thing. Burmese cats can be very picky, and it is possible that after a month they will not even approach a bowl filled with their previously beloved food. It is recommended to dilute the animal's diet with solid food: this will prevent the formation of tartar.
Pay attention to an important feature of feeding. As long as a mischievous kitten is running around your apartment, you should not limit it in food. However, this cannot be said about an adult animal that easily gains weight and soon turns into a clumsy bun on its paws. Make sure that your heart does not melt at the plaintively begging look of the burmese, and the cat will retain its natural elegance for a long time.
Is there a lot of food left after a fun feast? Do not rush to share it with an animal: not all "human" products are easily digested. Should be excluded:
- pickled, spicy and fried food;
- of vegetables – tomatoes, garlic, onions;
- of fruits – raisins and grapes;
- pork in any form;
- boiled potatoes;
- tubular bones;
Drinking water must be filtered. If you want to pamper the Burmese, buy bottled water of the highest category. But it's not worth boiling it: this is fraught with the development of urolithiasis in your pet.
Health and diseases of the Burmese cat
Among all breeds, it is the Burmese that is distinguished by strong immunity. These cats are not susceptible to hereditary diseases, which makes them excellent specimens for breeding. But still there are pathologies from which Burmese suffer. Among them:
- shortness of breath;
- severe lacrimation;
- skull deformity;
- gum inflammation;
- tail defects.
To maintain the health of the pet, it is recommended to visit the veterinarian regularly and vaccinate. Anthelmintic drugs should be firmly established in the animal "first aid kit". Even if your cat does not go out for a walk, it is necessary to give the medicine once every six months. With regular stay out of the house – once every three months.
How to choose a kitten
Burmese kittens are weaned from their mother at the age of 3-4 months, when the physical and psychological health of the babies is no longer at risk. Be prepared for the fact that due to the peculiarities of the breed, kittens may look much smaller than their relatives, but this is by no means a vice. Do not be confused by the transparent discharge from the eyes: this liquid serves to cleanse them. However, the yellow or white color of "tears" should be a wake-up call and a reason to visit a veterinarian.
The color of Burmese kittens is formed up to a year, so the sable coat initially casts shades of beige. If you plan to get a pet to participate in exhibitions, pay attention to an adult animal.
Purebred burmese are best purchased in specialized nurseries: so the chances of getting a cat full of energy and health in the future increase significantly. The bird market is the last place to go in search of a future friend.
Photos of Burmese kittens
How much does a Burmese cat cost
The price of burmese varies from $150 to $350, depending on the place of purchase of the animal and its pedigree. Abroad, these figures are increasing significantly: from $320 to $400. In pet stores, the price may be less, but do not be tempted by this. However, if you need a devoted friend, and not a future winner of exhibitions, you can take a baby without an outstanding pedigree.
Fortunately, many kennels provide a choice between elite kittens and owners of disqualifying signs. The latter are often sold with the condition of mandatory castration, since such animals are not suitable for breeding and development of the Burmese breed.