Some time ago I asked the people who are held in respect amoung birman breeders, to answer on questions regarding the development of Sacred Birmans at nowadays. Different opinions were interesting for me due to they were given by breeders and judges from North and South parts of Europe and shown moderm tendencies of breeding.
My questions were:
1. What type of the body ( length, proportions, weight and length of the legs and tail) is best for you at the moment?
2. Could you specify the shape of the forehead and nose( strong roman, Greek etc.) do you like in the Birmans?
3. How much strong chin do you like?
4. What is the ideal shape and placement of the ears for Birmans?
5. In some countries we could see the modern cats with long fur and strong undercoat. What type of Birman coating do you like more?
6. What is the maximum high of the back socks and gauntlets for the real show quality? Do you prefer narrow or wide angle of gauntlets (“V”)?
7. Between two Birmans identical to the standard whom you will choose____________ ( feature?)
8. Would you like to add something more to my questions?
Gabriela Kamber – Birman breeder since 1979 from Switzerland, cattery “von Achor”, more then 50 cats have FIFe Euro Champion title.
1.A Birman must be harmonious in everything! Birman are cats in medium size, not too largely but not too small. Ideally, 2.5 to 4 Kilos for a girl, 3,5 to 5 Kilos for a Boy. Birman may not be toо long, many are too long in everything, if the tail and the legs are long then also the nose and head are long, Birmans have not be to long… in addition, not briefly like a Persian.
2.The rules of Fifé nothing say of "Roman nose" this are a mistake of many people. If the Birman has clearly a "Roman nose", then often the nose is too long. The nose must be very harmoniously to the head, straight or easily Roma,! those lengthens the nose of "easy" stop, to top of nose must be alike as lengthens from "easy" stop to forehead. Many Birman have a too long nose and a too little round forehead, this must be round. Birman must have, clear Muzzles, without "Pinch", thereby the head are harmonious
3.If the chin is too strong, then the Birman loses its friendly expression, then one misses the "smile" the Birman. Chin must be good to see, but no dominant.
4.The ears should be suitable to the head , straight do not show the point of the ears upward, but somewhat easily after the side. The distance between the ears on the head must be at least minimum equal to the width of an ear. So if you check the head: the width of the ears corresponds the distance between them and not less, probably more then this !
5.Birmans are not Persians, they shouldn’t have too much coat!
Many breeders wish much coat because under strong coat many errors in the type could be hidden. Under much coat it can become well hidden, bad ears, to close eyes and much more besides, because the coat makes more beautiful and everyone can be confused thereby. Birman is a semi long hair cat, with semi-long hair, but still perfectly enough in order to be able to see errors. Many breeders face with difficulties to breed a correct cat, with semi long hair.
6.The regulations of the Fifé explain how it must be the ideal white shoes in Birman. Only such cats which have nearly perfect marks are suitable for show. The "V" is to be perfect, rather too briefly, than too long, all toes must have something white. Knows better less, than too much knows. No more runners, also not completely few no white marks not at chin, or at legs.
7.Better type and correct head, before perfect feet.
8.They have forget the eyes, where counts many points with Birman. These are not to be as approximately as with Persian, easily diagonally almond form, but not so diagonal as Siam, the distance between the eyes is to be 1.5 X the broad of an eye, the color - as dark as possible, blue and not violet!
….. and also the special character of the Birman, always friendly to all people and animals, never aggressive in any situation….
Lena Nordstrem – FIFe judge I, II from 1985. Birman breeder since 1975. SVERAK Sweeden.
1. I am glad to see that many breeders are coming back to stronger and bigger Birmans today. They have been small for a long time.
2 I would like a very soft profile not with a strong intendance just a curve a rounder forehead is to prefer. But not bald.
3. Just rounded so they are following the line from the eyes.
4. Quit broad and not tilted forwards. Open.
5. Yes I have seen the problem but the coat shall be semi long not Persian long and not that much undercoat so it will “ lift ” the rest of the coat
6 It is not that easy to get them to stay where you want. But as long as they are there they could be high or low. I will be happy if the go 1 third from the angle.
7. Still I have never seen to identical cats when I have judged. There will always be something they have different.
8.I whish breeder to understand that it takes time to breed something near to the top standard and that they shall not just “ collect ” cats. Don ’ t have more cats then you have time to share with them.
Henry Hornell – FIFe judge I,II, IV, Birman breeder with big experience, Norway.
1. The cat is a medium built cat the legs should be strong boned, high of legs is in proportion to the body,. The tail is after the standard to be of medium length. But lots of judges find this to short. Myself I will follow the standard but must admit I prefer a longer tail.
2.The head should also be strong boned, nice strong rounded cheek bones , good high rounded forehead the nose length not to long but not so short that it gives rounded shape , no roman nose.
3.The chin should be strong, from the tip of the nose in a straight line to the bottom of the chin. The depth of the chin should not be to flat.
4.The ears should be smallish wide apart on the head.
5. I like a soft silky texture, little under coat, strong under coat gives a fluffy appearance, which is wrong.
6. The max high of the gauntlets is max 2/3rds up, that’s the perfect standard, but for me the most important thing is symmetric, that also applies to the back gloves, which can be higher than the front gloves.
7.My preferred birman cat must have a heart shaped head which is not pointed in form.