- Weight — 7 to 10 pounds
- Coat characteristics — Short, smooth, and luxurious coats. They come in four primary colors – blue point, lilac point, seal point, and chocolate point.
- Enrichment needs — High
- Intelligence — High
- Vocalizations — Frequent and loud
- Life span — 13 to 15 years
- Temperament — Social, intelligent, loyal, vocal, and fun-loving
- Hypoallergenic — Yes
- Origin — Thailand
Siamese fun facts
- In Siamese cats, coat color comes later in life. At birth, Siamese cats are born all white. Coloring comes in the beginning the first week of their life, and can develop throughout the first year.
- The breed has a royal history. These special cats were often associated with Taiwanese royalty, dating back as far as1350 A.D. and possibly earlier!!
- Siamese cats are talented tricksters. Members of this breed are known for their intelligence, as well as their ability to master tricks quickly.
Siamese temperament and characteristics
Siamese cats are known for their playful, sweet demeanor, communicative body language, and whip-smart intelligence. Physically, their bright blue eyes and unique crooked tails are hallmarks of the breed. Siamese cats are extremely social and generally enjoy the presence of other humans, as well as small children or other pets in the home. This makes them an ideal choice of house pet for many, as they’re a rare breed which is almost always ready for whatever adventure you have in store.
While many other domestic cats act aloof or borderline irritated at new people in your home, your Siamese will usually warmly welcome them. They’re known as one of the most talkative cat breeds for a reason! You can expect a wide (and loud) range of vocalizations as you go throughout your day, occurring most often around mealtimes or when they need attention. These types of “meows” are also known as “chattering” across breed types.
Common Siamese cat health problems
While Siamese kittens and adult members of the breed are relatively healthy, there are a few genetic health issues to keep an eye out for over your furry friend’s lifetime. Early detection is key to addressing health problems successfully, increasing their chance of a long and healthy life.
- Progressive retinal atrophy . This eye condition can affect Siamese cats, and occurs when there is degeneration that’s found in photoreceptor cells. This can lead to blindness. Your veterinarian can help you choose medication and/or supplements that may prolong your cat’s vision for as long as possible.
- Kidney disease. Unfortunately, chronic kidney disease is common in these kitties. However, there is plenty your vet can do to help them have the highest quality of life possible. Interventions include fluids (IVs), supplements, injections, and surgery if needed.
- Hip dysplasia. This condition occurs when the femoral head or the top of the leg bone doesn’t fit well into the hip socket. This shifting can cause inflammation and discomfort. Your vet can intervene with surgical or nonsurgical intervention, such as physical therapy or weight loss.
- Periodontal disease . Siamese cats can get periodontal disease, even with routine dental hygiene. Vets can remove plaque regularly, helping you to keep teeth as polished and clean as possible.
🚨Male neutered cats are especially susceptible to feline lower urinary tract disease (FLUTD), which can become fatal if left untreated. Make an appointment with your vet immediately if you notice that your cat is having accidents.
Cost of caring for Siamese cats
While Siamese cat vet bills may vary based on the type of medical condition the cat is experiencing, most trips shouldn’t exceed $1,500. The average annual cost of the first year of cat ownership can range from $2,500 to $3,000, depending on if you chose to purchase from a breeder or adopt. This cost accounts for the one-time fees of cat ownership, such as the purchase of the cat and any licensing fees. It also accounts for all the medical care and supplies they might need over their first year of life. Subsequent years after should only cost you about $1,000 between food needs and annual vet visits.
If you’re looking for ways to save on your pet budget, we recommend signing up for pet health insurance. You can save on out-of-pocket expenses that way, and may even be eligible for additional savings opportunities if you sign up early. You can also experiment with a flexible pet savings account, which can give you similar perks in a more easy-to-access way.
History of the Siamese cat
The first Siamese cats ever recorded originated in Thailand, formerly known as Siam, around the 13-14th centuries. Researchers found them depicted in early works such as cat book poems like the Tamra Maew, or “Treatise on Cats”. They also appeared throughout royal documentation, as they were known as a luxurious and honored breed.
Siamese cats emigrated to Europe in the late 1800s, where they became a popular family favorite known for their unique appearance, sweet disposition, loyalty, and vocalization. Today, they make nearly every popular cat breed list in the United States, and are easily distinguished by their sharp blue eyes, large ears, and beautiful faces.
Caring for your Siamese cat
Giving your pet the care they need can prolong their life and increase their level of happiness as you welcome them into their human family. Before you read on to the next few sections, it’s a good idea to start with the basics. First, take them for their first wellness visit. You can get any necessary shots or support there. Then, sign up for FidoAlert. It’s a free service that can connect you to your pet if they get out unexpectedly. Siamese cats have high energy and a strong personality—making this a good idea to do early on.
Siamese cats enjoy spending time grooming themselves. They are generally very clean creatures, known for their good looks and one of a kind Siamese coat. While there are many type of Siamese cat sub-breeds (such as the Tonkinese), they all generally share the same silky coat and breed standard ear size.
There are a few things to keep in mind as you learn to properly groom your new Siamese cat:
- Siamese cats don’t have an undercoat. This means that they can get extremely cold quickly, and won’t regulate well after a bath or time in the elements. Keeping these kitties as dry as possible throughout the grooming process can keep them happy and healthy in the long run.
- Their large ears can attract buildup. This breed is known for having larger ears than other breeds, leaving plenty of room for waxy buildup or dirt accumulation. Be sure to keep an eye on the cleanliness of their ears and the surrounding areas.
- They enjoy being brushed, but be gentle. The Siamese has a single coat. While brushing can feel nice, excessive brushing can lead to irritation or hair loss. Once a week is a good average for most pet parents.
Regardless if your cat is an expert at grooming themselves, there are still some routine tasks that you should help with to prevent issues like gingivitis. Brushing your cat’s teeth, bringing them to the vet for routine dental care, and trimming your cat’s nails are all essential to a healthy cat and a happy pet parent.
No breed is truly hypoallergenic. Allergic reactions occur due to the protein found in a cat’s dander, hair, and saliva. Hypoallergenic cats simply shed less and thus have less of an effect on those with cat allergies.
Diet and nutrition
Siamese cats are carnivores, like other cat types. They generally do best with a higher-protein and lean fat diet, which can be attained with a high-quality blend of wet or dry cat food. No matter what brand you choose, though, we recommend looking into how it’s made and what it contains. Your cat has a high energy level,and will do best with a food that’s free of carb-heavy ingredients or unhealthy fillers.
It’s also important to feed your cat the right amount, avoiding over- or under-feeding them. While kittens generally need four small meals per day for their development, adult cats can be fed ¼ cup of food just twice per day, on average.
We do want to note that feeding preferences may vary based on your cat’s age, health conditions or developmental status. We always recommend that pet parents get a vet’s support for personalized feeding recommendations, keeping your cat as healthy and happy as possible through diet.
Lastly, your cat also needs an abundance of fresh water to thrive. It can be difficult to get some cats to drink water, so if you notice any disruptions or avoidance, we recommend exploring possible hydration alternatives with your vet. Some common fixes include:
- Fresh-running cat water fountains
- Hydration-rich wet cat food
- Non-reflective feeding bowls
Enrichment and environment
Siamese cats don’t need too much space to thrive. This breed can live long and happy lives in nearly any setting that has adequate food, water and care—from apartments to multi-bedroom houses. While they can occupy themselves, they are incredibly intelligent. This means that they can get bored if pet parents are “busy” or away for too long. Be sure to build in plenty of time for play and engagement with your Siamese to keep them from developing anxiety, depression, or other behavior disorders.
If you have to step away for a bit, we recommend investing in toys to keep your cat busy and mentally stimulated. Some of the most enriching options for your Siamese include prey-like cat toys that encourage chasing, challenge, puzzle, or maze toys, and climbing towers or cat trees with attached toys.
Siamese cats are considered easily trainable due to the breed’s high intelligence. You might also want to invest in a few high-quality cat treats to help in your training process, or just to give them a tasty surprise during your next playtime!
The environment of your play space can affect the health and wellness of your Siamese. This breed is extremely sensitive to excessive cold or hot temperatures, as they have a single-layer coat. Regulation can be difficult, which means that it’s important to keep the room in range of safe temperatures for cats, which is generally between 60*-70* Fahrenheit. If you don’t have central air regulation, we recommend finding pet-safe portable units that can keep the temperature of the home safe for your furry friend.
Breeds similar to the Siamese cat
Not quite sure that a Siamese is right for you? Even if you are, it’s worth taking the time to research and consider other similar breeds. Here are a few to get you started:
- Balinese. Balinese cats cats are a close match to a Siamese, with the only noticeable difference being their coat length. Their appearance, temperament and intelligence is the same, making this a great breed option for pet parents who are living in colder temperatures.
- Himalayan. Himalayan cats are known for their striking appearance, featuring darker Siamese-like features and a long, luxurious coat. They are quieter and calmer than the Siamese, and may be a better-suited companion for pet owners with busier schedules.
- Tonkinese. Tonkinese cats have Siamese breed roots, as they’re the product of a cross between Siamese and Burmese breed members. They are generally smaller than Siamese cats, but still have their same intelligent, boisterous, and sweet personality.
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Frequently asked questions
What are Siamese cats like?
Siamese cats are known for their long legs, dark brown accent coloring, a bluish-white body and a wedge-shaped head. They are one of the most popular breeds in North America due to their beauty, personality and love of human interaction. They have a rich history as a generations-deep member of the royal family in Thailand, and are frequently seen around hubs for locals and tourists—such as Buddhist temples and tourist sites.
Are Siamese cats good house cats?
Siamese cats love people, and get along well with small children or other animals. Many enjoy their company as house cats. However, their high intelligence can make them more demanding compared to other breeds, as they require more attention and play time to meet their needs. Be sure you set aside enough time to engage them and play with them!
What’s special about Siamese cats?
While many cats are intelligent, few are actually trainable. Your Siamese will enjoy rigorous training sessions, especially if they’re paired with delicious treats!
What’s the average lifespan of a Siamese cat?
A Siamese cat generally lives between 12-15 years, on average. However, certain members of the breed have been noted to go beyond that—reaching ages between 18-20 years old. Environmental factors and the care level available can influence your cat’s lifespan.
Do Siamese cats shed a lot?
While shedding is normal for any type of cat, Siamese don’t shed as much as you’d see with other breeds. This is because they have only a single-layer coat, making the quantity of hair less, on average.