Siamese Vs. Birman Vs Himalayan Cats [Differences & Similarities]

There are many different types of cats in the world, and each one has its own unique set of characteristics. In this blog post, we will be discussing the similarities and differences between Siamese, Birman, and Himalayan cats. These three breeds are all very similar, but they have some key differences that you should know about before deciding which one is right for you!

Siamese, Birmans, and Himalayan Cats are all much-loved species who make excellent family pets due to their playfulness and affectionate nature. Though these species are closely related, they also have some notable differences.

Continue reading to the differences between these breeds, including physical appearance, temperament, color, coat, face, and health. Plus, discover which of these breeds needs the most attention and which is happy to play independently.

What Are The Origins Of Siamese, Birman, And Himalayan Cats? 

The Birman is the sacred cat of Burma. It was exported to Europe from the Far East after the first world war.

The Himalayan cat sometimes referred to as a Himmie, began as a cross between the Persian and the Siamese in the 1930s. Though crossbred, each of these cat breeds has a distinct personality.

The Siamese is one of the oldest cat breeds, originally from Thailand.

What’s The Difference Between A Siamese And A Birman?

The easiest way to tell the difference between a Siamese and a Birman cat is to assess their appearance. While Siamese cats have long, slender bodies and triangular faces, a Birman has a bulkier and more compact body with a round face.

The markings on a Siamese cat tend to be darker than those found on a Birman, and a Siamese cat’s tail is more prolonged and skinnier than that of a Birman.

What Is The Difference Between Siamese And Himalayan?

Siamese cats are a natural breed, whereas Himalayans only came into existence following the intervention of humans. Though Himalayan cats share their DNA with the Siamese cat. Their features are much more similar to that of a Persian.

The main difference between these two cat breeds is that the Himalayan cat has a long fluffy coat while the Siamese is short-haired. Also, the Siamese has a slender body and short hair, while the Himalayan cat has a bulkier body with long, fluffy fur.

Himalayan cats have short noses that give their face a flat appearance, and their ears are small and circular, whereas a Siamese cat has a triangular-shaped face and long triangular-shaped ears.

What Is The Difference Between A Birman And A Himalayan?

It can be challenging to differentiate between a Birman and a Himilayan cat as they have many similarities and are both attractive breeds. However, the Birman cat is rarer than the Himalayan, so it may take you longer to source one as a pet.

A Himalayan cat is often slightly bigger and more heavily boned than a Birman. In addition, the longer coat of the Himalayan cat gives it a softer and fluffier appearance. The Birman has a slightly more triangular face, while the Himalayan has a domed head with a snub nose.

Siamese Vs. Birman Vs. Himalayan Cats [Differences ; Similarities]


Siamese cats are famous for their tanzanite blue eyes and striking points of color spread over their body. They have long legs with a slim tubular body and large triangular ears.

The Birman cat has similar markings to the Himalayan cat, but the Birman has four white paws referred to as socks or gloves and a golden sheen to its coat.

The Himalayan cat looks like a Persian cat with Siamese markings. They have a light body with a range of colored markings, including chocolate, lilac, tortoiseshell, cream, black, seal, or white.

Himalayan cats are known for their striking appearance with sparkling blue eyes and longhaired coats. They have short legs and a long body; their cheeks are full, and their ears are small with rounded tips.


Siamese cats are a short hair breed and come with various color markings, including chocolate, blue, seal, and lilac. They have a short fine coat with points of color on the face, ears, tail, and feet.

The Birman is a semi-longhair breed; while he will require regular grooming, his fur will not mat. In contrast, the Himalayan requires daily grooming to avoid matted or tangled fur.

Birman kittens are all born white, so you may not know what color cat you have until it has grown into an adult.

Himalayan cats have long, straight fur in various colors, including brown, seal, cream, fawn, black, white, and tortoiseshell. They require more maintenance with daily grooming to avoid matted or tangled fur.


A Siamese cat is talkative, social, and active, relying on human companionship for love and attention. They are a curious breed who get lonely reasonably easily.

Birman’s are smart, affectionate, and easy to handle. They are an ideal family pet as they love human company and are very talkative, often making bird-like sounds. Birmans are social cats who play well with others, but they don’t like to be left alone for too long. 

The breed thrives on playing interactive games and exploring the outdoors, and they are equally happy to curl up on your lap for a cuddle. It’s best to adopt a Birman if they have company most of the time as they don’t like to be left alone for too long. 

Himalayans are laid-back, good-natured cats ideal for a house with kids and pets. As Himalayans like to keep their paws on the ground, they are playful and energetic but less likely to climb up your curtains than a Birman.

Himalayan cats are known for being sensitive to the mood of their owners, and they form a strong bond with their human companions. Himalayan’s are less talkative and demanding than 


Siamese cats’ common health issues include eye problems such as progressive retinal atrophy, asthma, and systemic amyloidosis. In this condition, protein builds within internal organs, preventing them from working correctly.

In addition, Siamese cats may be more at risk of developing a form of cancer called mediastinal lymphoma and abnormal hip joint development called dysplasia.

Birman’s aren’t predisposed to any known significant health issues. However, they are still at risk of common cat diseases such as obesity and kidney disease.

Himalayans face an increased risk of health issues compared to Birmans. While Birmans don’t appear to carry any hereditary disorders apart from cardiomyopathy, which weakens the heart muscles, Himalayans are at risk of dermatitis on the face, eyelid cysts, and tumors. 

In addition, Male Himalayans have an increased risk of developing urinary tract stones.

Siamese Vs. Birman Vs. Himalayan Cats [Comparison Chart]

Height8-10 inches8-10 inches10-12 inches
Length15-20 inches15-18 inches17-19 inches
Weight6-14 pounds6-12 pounds7-12 pounds
Life Span8-15 years12-16 years9-15 years
TemperamentSociable, affectionate, and talkative.Laidback, easygoing, friendly, and quiet.Affectionate, mellow, docile, independent, sweet, and quiet.
Good WithFamilies (and children) Seniors, Cat-friendly dogs.Families (and children) Single people, Seniors, Cat-friendly dogs.Adults, Gentle children, Seniors, Cat-friendly dogs, and other cat breeds.
IntelligenceHighModerateModerate to High
PlayfulnessHigh ActiveModerateModerate
Coat LengthShortLongLong and Straight
ColorsBrown / Chocolate / Seal / Cream / Beige / Cinnamon / Red / Lilac / Fawn / Blue / Black / White

Colorpoint patterns
Chocolate / Seal / Cream/ Cinnamon / Red / Lilac / Fawn

Color Points or mitted
Brown / Chocolate / Seal / Cream / Cinnamon / red / Lilac / Fawn / Blue / Black / White / Tortoiseshell
SheddingLowModerate to HighHigh
BodySlim tubular body with long legsstockier bodyShort, heavy-boned body (similar to a Persian) Looks soft and round.
FaceTriangular shaped face and long triangular earsTriangular face with a Roman nose.Domed head with a short, thick neck. Large round eyes, small ears, and a snub nose.
Eye ColorBlueBlueBlue
Grooming NeedsLowLowHigh – long coat requires daily grooming.

Final Thoughts

It’s pretty easy to spot a Siamese cat with long, slender bodies, triangular faces, and short hair. While it’s harder to differentiate a Birman from a Himalayan, you can look for clues in their body shape, fur style, and face shape.

When choosing which breed to adopt, consider each cat’s individual needs. A Birman may be easiest to maintain as it does not require the same attention as a Siamese or have the grooming needs of a Himalayan. In addition, a Birman is less likely to experience the health problems of the other two breeds.

If you’re looking for a cat that requires lots of attention, is highly intelligent, and will love playing games with you, look no further than the Siamese. Still, if you want a cat who is happy to lounge around independently, then the Himalayan may be a better fit.

Whichever cat you choose, these are three friendly, lovable, and beautiful breeds that will make the perfect addition to your family.

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