Archive for the Birman category

Is a Birman Right for You?

Do you want a cat that is considered to be a sacred animal? Many people think that the beautiful Birman cat breed originated from cats that guarded the Burman temples. This breed is even rumored to have helped the Burmese monks fight off attackers when a Birman’s coat turned the golden color of the goddess the monks worshiped, except for his paws which stayed pure white. Of course, less fanciful cat lovers say the Birman is simply a French relative of the Himalayan cat breed.

While no one is completely sure where the Birman breed came from, all cat fanciers agree that it is an older breed. Some breeders say the Birman is closely related to the Siamese cat, since it resembles a slightly stockier Siamese in appearance. In fact, more than one person has said that when the pure white Burman temple cats changed color, it was probably because a stray Siamese cat fathered a few litters of kittens.

In the nineteen twenties, the Birman cat reached Europe. A single female survived the long voyage from Burma to France and gave birth to a female kitten who is the ancestor of today’s Birman cats. This cat was most likely crossed with a Siamese cat. After World War II, the Birman was in grave danger of extinction, as only one known pair of Birmans had survived the German occupation. The breed was again outcrossed with another cat to avoid extinction, although this time the Persian was most likely used.

With all of the inbreeding that was done to save the Birman breed, it would be no surprise if these cats were prone to several hereditary diseases. However, the breed is surprisingly healthy overall. Just be aware that most of these cats are prone to anesthesia sensitivity and this problem, along with the fact that Birmans can be either A or B blood type, can cause trouble on the operating table. The breed is also prone to developing hairballs.

Since the Birman is prone to hairballs, you may want to feed your cat a diet that is formulated to aid in hairball prevention. If he becomes lethargic and does not eat as much as he normally does, you should consult your veterinarian about treating him for hairballs. Since this breed is not as active as some other breeds, you may also need to ask your veterinarian about feeding your cat a weight control diet if he becomes overweight.

While this breed is a longhair breed, it does not have a heavy coat. As long as you comb your Birman’s hair once a week, you should not have a problem with the coat matting.

If you are looking for a cat that isn’t quite as demanding and attention seeking as some of the more affectionate breeds, but also isn’t too standoffish, the Birman breed is a good choice. These cats are still somewhat playful, curious and affectionate, like their Siamese relatives, but are more laid back and relaxed than the Siamese, like their Persian relatives.

Birman – The Facts Every Owner Of This Cat Breed Should Know

By Robert Benjamin

The history of the Birman cat is steeped in mystery. According to legend, the people of Asia built a temple to worship a golden goddess with sapphire-blue eyes. A priest often knelt in meditation with a white temple cat. One night the temple was attacked at the priest killed. As the priest died, the cat placed his feet upon the priest and faced the golden goddess. As he did, the hairs of his white body turned golden, and his yellow eyes to sapphire-blue, his four white legs turned brown, but where his paws rested, they remained white. Where this legend ends, history begins.

The temple was raided at the beginning of the 20th century. Two westerners, Auguste Pavie and Major Gordon Russell, came to the aid of the priests. As a gesture of gratitude the priests later sent the two men a pair of Birman. The male cat did not survive the trip but the female, who was pregnant, did. The Birman is an average size cat (males generally ranging from eight to twelve pounds, females seven to nine pounds).

Birmans have a medium length coat that requires very little grooming. The coats are usually a light color on the face and darker over the rest of the coat, with golden shades being the most popular. Their eyes are always blue and their paws are white. Birman coats are long but not very dense, so they are not prone to matting. As the third most popular longhaired cat, Birmans are good pets. They tend to enjoy the company of their human families.

Birmans are described as ‘soft spoken,’ but social and friendly. Birmans are considered sweet and because of this, they are able to adapt well to changes and adore their family. They tend to be a healthy breed; Birmans are generally free from any medical concerns, but some are sensitive to anesthetics. Birmans also require relatively little training and will learn to use the litter box on their own.

There is a website that has great information on Birmans and most other breeds of cats. It has details that pertain to a cat breeds health, grooming, living conditions, best food choices and more, the website is called: Dog And Cat Facts, and can be found at this url:

By Robert W. Benjamin

Copyright © 2007

You may publish this article in your ezine, newsletter, or on your web site as long as it is reprinted in its entirety and without modification except for formatting needs or grammar corrections.

Robert W. Benjamin has been in the software business on the internet for over 5 years, and has been producing low-cost software for the past 25+ years. He first released products on the AMIGA and C64 computer systems in the late 1970’s-80’s.

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