15 things you didn’t know about the Birman

15 things you didn't know about the Birman

The Birman, also known as the Sacred Cat of Burma, is seen as the perfect cat. This is because the breed is beautiful, easy to care for and adapts easily to different lifestyles.

1. Its coat color changes with age

The Birman is known for its beautiful beige coat. With that being said, the breed’s coat color changes as it ages. For example, when a Birman gets older, the color of its legs, ears, and muzzle start to darken. When they are younger, they are lighter.

2. All Birman kittens are born white

Speaking of their coat color, when they are kittens, their coat is entirely white. All kittens are born white and it isn’t until they reach the age of two years that they have their final color.

White Birman cat
A white Birman kitten

3. Resemblance to the Siamese

While this cat has recognizable physical characteristics, it is often confused with the Siamese cat. That being said, no link has been determined between the two breeds.

The physical appearance of these two cats may be quite similar, but regarding their personality, they have many differences. For example, while the Sacred Cat of Burma is a very relaxed cat, the Siamese cat is known to be rather active.

4. The origin of the Birman is unclear

Although this feline is talked about in many legends, its origin remains unclear. Many people believe that this cat breed originated in Burma, which is now Myanmar. This cat breed is said to have been found in France in the 1920s.

5. This cat acts like a dog

This cat breed has an adorable personality! Families all over the world swoon over the Birman because it is affectionate and very attached to the people it lives with. Additionally, they are known to be playful and get along well with children. For this reason, the Birman cat is considered to be like a dog.

Many Birmans have been trained to learn tricks, like dogs. They can fetch their toys, walk on a leash, and respond to their name.

A Birman cat lying down
A Birman cat lying down.

6. They expresses themselves with a particular sound

This cat breed expresses itself a lot! They have a very soft voice and never hesitate to make themselves understood. However, the Birman meows very little. They prefer to communicate using a very soft sound that sounds like a bell ringing. In addition to this, they are very discreet cats. If you don’t keep an eye on them, you won’t hear them coming into a room!

7. The Birman doesn’t like to be high up

Cats are know to prefer high places to dominate their environment. However, this does not apply to the Sacred Cat of Burma. Indeed, this breed generally likes to stay on the ground, or in places very close to the ground. This cat is not very adventurous and prfer to relax on the sofa. With that in mind, Birman cats are still curious, discreet, sometimes try to sneak into inappropriate places. It’s important to always make sure that your Birman is safe!

8. The breed nearly went extinct

During the Second World War, the Birman nearly went extinct. Indeed, during this difficult period, many breeders had to stop their breeding. It is said that there were only two Birmans left before breeders started to repopulate it. Thus, crossbreeding was carried out. The breed later became famous and admired by all. In 1967, the Sacred Cat of Burma was finally recognized in the United States.

9. Karl Lagerfeld’s cat, Choupette

In February 2019, when Karl Lagerfeld passed away, he left his beloved cat Choupette an orphan. This world-famous Birman received all the royalties of the German fashion designer. Today, Karl Lagerfeld’s former housekeeper takes care of the pretty blue-eyed Birman. She lives a peaceful life, continues to be fed with home-made meals and is even represented by an agent.

10. This breed doesn’t like to be alone

While some cats like being left alone, this is not the case for the Birman. This cat breed loves interaction. They love to hang out with humans just as much as other animals. For this reason, this breed is very popular with families. They are very easy to live with and adapt very well to daily life with children and other animals.

11. Their health

This cat breed lives quite long and is reputed to have robust health. With that being said, it can be subject to certain diseases such as glaucoma, cranial malformations or feline hyperesthesia syndrome. There are also cases of calcium oxalate stones in the urinary tract for some cats. If you see a vet regularly, these diseases can be quickly detected and taken care of.

12. Their paws must be white

The Birman is often called the gloved cat because it has white paws. This physical characteristic is mandatory regarding the standard of the breed. The white must be pure. It can stop at the edge of the toes and must not go past the ankle.

A Birman cat breed hunting
A Birman cat about to pounce.

13. The Birman does not require much maintenance

While the Birman has a medium-long coat, this cat’s coat is not complicated to maintain. Its fur is actually rather silky. This allows the coat to not have too many knots. On the other hand, it is necessary to brush it at least once a week.

14. Hypoallergenic cat

If you are interested in adopting a cat but are allergic to them, the Birman could be a great option. Although the breed has a very nice coat, it is considered hypoallergenic because it has less Fel d 1 than other cats. This allergen, which is present in their sebaceous glands as well as in their saliva, is the cause of cat allergies found in humans.

15. The Birman is the perfect companion

As you may have understood from this article, the Birman has many qualities, both physical and behavioral. A couple of their qualities include its medium size and beautiful coat that is surprisingly easy to maintain. This cat breed also adapts very well to many environments. Furthermore, they typically get along with everyone. Last but not least, they are affectionate, playful — all the qualities that cat owners are looking for!