A Guide to the Burmese Cat

Photo of Karen Dell

Karen Dell

Senior Editor • Backyard Cat Enclosures

22 September 2016

burmese cat breed profile infographic


This cat’s ancestors lived in Buddhist temples, seeking spiritual enlightenment or whatever it is that temple cats do. Their quest for truth eventually took them to America and Europe, where they were crossed with the Siamese to create the loveable Burmese of today.


American and British aficionados bred these felines separately, so two variants of the Burmese emerged: the American is stockier with round paws and a shorter muzzle and a round head; the British are their stretched-out cousins, with slender, long bodies, oval paws and a larger nose. These cats might be small, but under their short coat they’re a slab of muscle. You might be surprised at how heavy these adorable little guys are. Forget Sylvester the cat, the Burmese has a lot more in common with Stallone. The colours on their silky coat ranges from a light biscuit-like cream to the more chocolaty shades of brown - and that’s as sweet as it sounds.


Burmese cats have many delightful traits but the most irresistible is their natural inquisitiveness. Doing laundry? Your furball is happy to play goofy sidekick. Getting dressed? Ask your Burmese whether that outfit  is working or not. Cooking pasta? These opinionated kitties will happily tell you how well (or not) you're doing. So don’t forget to keep their litter pristine and their water bowl clean and full. Fortunately, your devotion is a two-way street. Had a bad day? Your Burmese cat will comfort you with cuddles and low-soft purrs. Their outgoing nature means they get along well with other pets, kids and even strangers - so make sure to keep them inside or in an outdoor enclosure or they’ll be going home with one.


As far as playtime goes, the Burmese demand variety. It’s a personality thing - the Burmese are nothing but fun, so why would they settle for a boring old piece of string? Check out some real toys. Otherwise, this short-haired breed is fairly low-maintenance and the weekly brushing and regular nail-clipping is more about the bonding than anything else. Just don’t forget to brush their teeth!

Being a hybrid breed, this is one tough kitty, and lives longer than the average kitty.  However, pet parents must note that the Burmese cat is prone to feline leukemia - you may want to vaccinate your furry friend to be safe.


These golden-eyed beauties are medium shedders, and have no undercoat, so unless you’re sensitive to the slightest bit of kitty dust, you’re good to go!

Suggested names

Did we mention these cats are strong? Sorry, we can’t help but be a little awestruck, which is why we’ve used their raw strength as inspiration. Here are our best suggestions:

  • Arnie
  • Lou
  • Xena
  • Rocky
  • Athena

Still not sold on the Burmese? If these 5 reasons don’t convince you nothing will! Or, if you’re looking for the purrfect treat for your purrfect pal, click on through. Find the cat that’s right for you here.


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