A Birman is a cat with sapphire eyes, clothed with silk and wearing a velvet mask, with the most immaculate white gloved paws.
The position of the gloves, its type and color made the Birman one of the most complicated and difficult cats to breed (compared to a Ragdoll for instance).
HEAD : rather round, small ears but well open and well placed in order to leave a dome above the head. The eyes must be big, almond-shaped, and slightly round, as dark blue as possible and uniformly colored. Its forehead needs to be bombed, with a Roman nose and a strong chin in line with the nostrils when you see it from profile.
BODY : massive corpulence without resembling to a Main-Coon (males weight between 11 and 13 pounds, and females around 9 pounds), low on paws.
TAIL : as thick and fluffy as possible and with no nods or kinks.
ROBE : semi-long hair with a nice fur collar around the neck in winter time.
HAIR: semi-long and as silky as possible. A traditional Birman doesn’t have hair that tangles like a Persian (one of the issue with today crossing with Persian lines to create the new colors).
COLOR : The robe must be as clear (white) as possible in order to contrast well with the points which needs to be of a uniform color on the triangle of the head, the pawns and the tail. Colors are either: seal or bleu ; chocolate or lilac ; red or cream, tortie (seal, chocolate, lilac cream, blue cream) silver or smoke ; all these colors exist in tabby/lynx (tiger face) or unified points.
PAWS : The white gloves must end at the plow of the front paws ; the white rear gloves must be identical to the front gloves on the top of the pawns and in symmetrical (triangular laces/spur in 7/8rd of the paw) on the bottom.
The two tables show the limits. First table is the lowest markings. The second table, the highest marking authorized.
A knot in the tail, strabismus, a drop of milk (chin), points in the laces, white drops in other places than the gloves or laces, absence of laces/spur, fingers recovered by point color, head too Persian or too Siamese, nose insufficiently Roman, eyes too pales, lack of morphology…
As it is so hard to get the perfect Birman, distinctions are made between the following (and price is equivalent):
- •A pet quality cat, with a few defaults according to the standard, and it is unadvised to reproduce.
- •A breeding cat, with also some defaults but also some qualities interesting for reproduction.
- •A Show cat, who meets all the necessary basic criteria and who can become a champion without problems.
- •A Podium cat, perfect, ... rare and exceptional !