Like all cats, the Burmese cat is elegant and self-assured. It ranks high on many cat lovers’ favorite list because of its playfulness, intelligence and willingness to interact with its human companions. Learn more about this beautiful cat and find out what makes it such a wonderful addition to your family.
Burmese Cat History
The Thai name for the Burmese cat is Suphalak. It means beautiful, splendid-looking and fortunate. The term is clearly appropriate name for this breed. Most Burmese cats in the U.S. today are likely to be descendants of a cat named Wong Mau who was brought to America from Burma in 1930. Wong Mau herself was half-Burmese and half-Siamese, a breed that is nearly similar.
Although Wong Mau was from Burma, early records indicate that cats resembling the breed originally came from Siam, now known as Thailand. After the invasion by Burma, the cat was brought by soldiers to their home country. From there, it was only a matter of time before the Burmese traveled the world.
Burmese cats have glossy, satiny short coats, with a body size that ranges from small to medium build. They weigh about 4 to 6 kgs. as adults. The eye color of the true Burmese is yellow or gold.
In the past, Burmese cats had dark brown or sable coats but with breeding practices, modern cats of this breed have begun to appear in different coat colors, including chocolate or champagne, lilac or platinum, red, tortoiseshell, cream and blue. In competitions, the sables were judged differently from the rest of the colors, which were categorized in what was then called ‘dilute division’. These divisions were eliminated in 2010.
Burmese cats are long-lived, so pet owners are assured of their company for as long as 16 or even 18 years.
The Burmese cat is not known for being lazy, so be prepared to keep yourself active because this breed likes to play. If there ever was a breed of cat that remained ‘kittenish’ even in adulthood, this is it. They are energetic and smart companions, quite attuned to their human’s moods. Females tend to be very active and curious. Your Burmese companion will always want to know what you are doing and why. New objects will fascinate her endlessly and she does not bore easily. Males, however, are much more relaxed but also like to be involved, particularly if new things and opportunities for play present themselves.
With a Burmese cat, be prepared to have your very own feline shadow. He will follow you around, content in your presence. However, if he needs anything, you can be sure that he will let you know. Burmese are not very vocal but they will insist that you pay attention to them until their needs and wants are met. His vocalization is quite distinct – soft, sweet and slightly hoarse. This works for him, though because it makes it nearly impossible to say no to this cat.
Burmese integrate easily into a home and are excellent as indoor cats. They are no-fuss travelers and can be wonderful companions to children and even dogs. This is one cat who likes its human, so if you give it unquestioning love and loyalty, it will respond in kind quite readily.