Everything You Need to Know About the Siamese Cat

The Siamese cat is a living work of art. With large ears, sleek coats, and stunning eyes, it's no wonder that this breed is so popular. In addition, Siamese are known for their air of distinction and their discerning attitudes. They know they're royalty and aren't afraid to show it! Pop culture likes to portray these gorgeous cats as unfriendly(i.e., Lady and the Tramp), but their regal attitudes should not be confused with indifference. Siamese cats love their owners unconditionally, much like dogs do, and are a very friendly cat breed. They take attachment to the next level and move beyond sitting solely on your lap or at your feet. Siamese will curl up on your laptop, book, e-reader, or anything else you may be holding. They only want your attention and are not afraid to interrupt your "me time" to get it.

That said, these cats aren't afraid to voice their thoughts - loudly. They have a serious set of lungs and are always happy to talk for long periods—just another way they say that they love you. Of course, the beautiful cat breed has its quirks, but their endearing traits are just another reason why this breed is so popular.

Understanding the Siamese

siamese cat plays on the couch with a ball

The Siamese cat is famous for its striking, aristocratic appearance. Its distinctive color pattern, with contrasts between light and dark, has fascinated people around the world since the breed was first discovered in Thailand, formerly known as Siam.

Siamese cats came from Thailand in the late 1800s and into England. They were first recognized as a breed by the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA) here in the United States in 1934. There are different types of Siamese cats, categorized by their colorings.

The Cat Fanciers Association (CFA) only recognizes the following four coat colors:

  • Seal Points: extremely dark brown, almost black
  • Blue Points: a light gray body color with cool, steely gray points
  • Chocolate Points: a lighter brown
  • Lilac Point: a lighter, warmer shade of gray than blue points

Siamese cats have several health issues you should talk to a reputable breeder about, including progressive retinal atrophy. These cats can also be prone to eye and vision problems associated with their blue eyes. Selective breeding can help minimize these health risks, but be sure to buy from a reputable breeder aware of these health issues.

Fun Siamese Cat Facts

Siamese cat sits on the floor

Here are some fun facts about this affectionate cat:

  • Siamese cats, thanks to their distinctive looks, feature heavily in popular culture, including Disney's The Aristocats and Lady and the Tramp and in the beloved children's book, The Incredible Journey by Sheila Burnford.
  • Siamese cats lent their genetics to many other cat breeds, including the Colorpoint Shorthair, Bengal Cat, Oriental Shorthair, and Oriental Longhair, among many others.
  • Siamese cats descend from an ancient breed of Thai cats, and the name Siamese comes from the old name for Thailand, Siam.

Siamese cats were part of the royal family! This royal cat has a reputation in Britain. Queen Victoria of England was reportedly fond of the breed, and Queen Elizabeth II was given seal point Siamese kittens as a wedding present.

This article was originally published on January 28, 2020. 

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READ MORE: How Much Do You Know About Siamese Cat Coloration?