The Siamese, originally from Thailand (also called Siam Country) is one of the most popular breeds in Asia. Became very popular in the 19th century, it is distinguished by its beautiful blue eyes, its triangular head and slender body.
The earliest siamese cat traces date back to the 14th century when the description of the “Winchienmaat” (the Siamese cat) returns in the ancient manuscripts of Tamra Maew (translated by the poems of the book-cat), which would come from the kingdom of Ayutthaya. In these stories, there is also talk of cat Korat and the Suphalak (not to be confused with the controversial Burmese).
When the capital Ayutthaya was sacked on April 7, 1767, at the end of the Burmese-Siamese war, the Burmese army burned everything and returned to Burma, bringing with it Siamese nobles and members of the royal family in captivity. The Buddha images were cut for their gold, and all the royal treasures were stolen. According to Thai legend, Burmese King Hsinbyushin found and read the poem for Thai cats in Tamra Maew. The poem describes all Thai cats as being as rare as gold, and all those who own this cat will become rich. He told his army to gather all the Suphalak cats and bring them back to Burma with the other treasures. Today in Thailand this legend is told as a humorous explanation as to why Thai cats are so rare.
Two types of Siamese Cat
It should be noted that there are 2 types of Siamese: the “old” Siamese and the Siamese called “Thai”. The “old” Siamese has long ears and a triangular head that is very similar to the Oriental Shorthair and Siamese “Thai”, face rounder and beefy.
At the origin of several breeds
The Siamese cat is also at the origin of several feline breeds well known today, such as:
- The Balinese (A long-haired Siamese)
- Bengal (cross between an Asian Leopard and a Siamese)
- Havana Brown
- Savannah (the first savannah was a mix of Serval and Siamese)
- And many others…
The colors of the Siamese
Originally, the only color accepted was the Seal Point, but as Blue Point, Chocolate and Lilas Point appeared, these colors were also accepted. In the 70s, Tabby Points and Red Cream were also their entry. In 1989, Silver Tabby and Smoke Points were accepted.
The Siamese is a cat that needs interaction with his human. He is a loyal cat with often only one master, although there may be several members to his family. He gets on very well with the other chats and enjoys the company.
They also are very talkative, like the cat of Bengal. It was not unusual for my Mya to tell me about her day when I came back from work.
The life expectancy of Siamese is between 10 and 14 years. Studies show that they are sensitive to gastrointestinal problems as well as lower urinary tract diseases.
Currently a global research is launched by several European and American laboratories. These are sensitized on a disease that affects the race of Siamese and Oriental: feline amyloidosis, called “family” amyloidosis.
This disease affects mainly cats between 1 and 5 years old, but can also reach older cats. It is a genetic disease that presents as kidney failure or as hemorrhage internal to the liver or pancreas. Studies are still in progress to determine the exact cause.
Some interesting facts:
- Several accounts say that the Siamese cat kept the treasures of the King of Siam, which caused the eyes to end by squinting at the sight of the treasure.
- Bob Dylan mentions the cat” in his song “Like a Rolling Stone” (3min 10 sec)
- In The Lady and the Tramp, the two petty cats are Siamese who are named Si and Am.
- In the Garfield series, Garfield’s rival is a Siamese named Nermal.
- According to the Guinness World Record, the oldest Siamese to date would have lived 30 years and was named Scooter.