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Siamese

One of the world’s oldest feline breeds, Siamese cats were first introduced to the world in the late 1800s, when they were exported from the kingdom of Siam, modern day Thailand. The Siamese cat made its European debut in England, as a gift to an English ambassador who brought them home with him. Almost immediately, they began appearing in English cat shows, and followed in the US by the early 1900s. Their sleek lines of the Siamese cat, the sharp color contrast, narrow wedge shaped heads, almond shaped blue eyes, and short silky coats make them strikingly unique and beautiful. Combined with striking intelligence, inquisitive, affectionate, and social nature, they are indeed a very well known and popular feline breed.

Siamese Cat

The first to arrive on the Western scene and to day still the most well known Siamese color variation is the Seal Point, a color scheme of brown fawn colored body, brown mask, brown ears and dark brown to black extremities. Other color variations of the Siamese cat are the Chocolate Point (creamy white body, milk chocolate mask, ears, and extremities), the Blue Point (bluish white body with slate blue mask, ears, and extremities), and the Lilac Point (white body with pinkish gray mask, ears, and extremities).

While color is indeed one of the Siamese cat breed’s most distinguishing characteristics, the physical structure of the Siamese also is unique, distinguishing, and very important. The Siamese breed standard is the longer the better, with long tubular, muscular bodies. The legs and the tail are long. The hair coat is short and silky. The large ears accentuate a wedge shaped head, which is adorned with large almond shaped blue eyes.

Siamese cats are known for being very intelligent and intuitive. By nature they are very curious and inquisitive, as well as very social cats, tending to thrive in a family, multiple pet environment. They are tolerant of small children, other cats, and even dogs. One of the Siamese cat’s most endearing features is their propensity to express themselves vocally and physically. In a household of Siamese cats, rarely more than an hour passes without hearing the meow of the Siamese, just as rarely is a person ever seated without a Siamese perched on his or her lap.

Health concerns for Siamese cats include hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and medially luxating patella. Therefore, it is important to ask breeders for documentation of pre-breeding screening of the tom and queen prior to purchase of a Siamese kitten. If from good breeding stock, kept indoors, fed a good nutritious diet, and with maintained with regular wellness visits to the veterinarian, Siamese cats are known to live long lives, averaging 13-15 years.

 

By: Roger L. Welton, DVM

Founder, Web-DVM

President Maybeck Animal Hospital

Author Canine and Feline 101