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Birmans?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
So after a lifetime of rescuing strays, and fostering and rehoming an endless stream of dumped kitties (including purebreds - mostly Persians and Siamese from crappy breeders) I have decided that before I die I would like a purebred cat just once!

After doing some research, it seems the Birman would be a good choice for me. I need a cat who is fairly gentle and sweet and who could be a nice companion for my feral female cat, who lost her own companion last fall and who is lonely and sad.

I would rescue one, but could go for the rest of my life never seeing a Birman kitten in any rescue or shelter within 2000 miles of me.

I"m told Birmans get along with other animals..?. I have a dog also.

I have found a breeder who seems highly reputable, but could other owner/breeders tell me something more about them - health, temperament, how much grooming is required?

I'll only be getting one purebred cat and want to make the right decision!

Thanks.
post #2 of 14
Well, I'm not a Birman breeder, but I am priveleged to live with two! Birmans are very loving and gentle. They have no real congenital health defects that are breed-specific. Temperment is usually fairly laid-back. They like to cuddle, but are okay with you being busy and will leave you alone. Little to no grooming is actually required, as they have a single layer coat that is similar in texture to rabbit fur - very soft and doesn't mat. They get along really well with other animals provided they have proper introductions, and are actually quite social and in general do better with company than being alone.

If you really want a kitten, go with a breeder. But I would ask that you consider an adult, which you might be able to find as a rescue. I haven't seen any emails go out on my listserv recently about any cats specifically needing rescue.

This is a great place to start looking for a breeder. http://www.birmanbreeder.com/site.htm

This is National Birman Fancier's website and includes contact information about rescues. http://www.nationalbirmanfanciers.com/

Best of luck - I adore Birmans and hope you will too!
post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thank you for the info! "Loving, gentle and laid-back" is perfect for my home situation! Your cats are beautiful.

While I would prefer to rescue, Birmans are a really rare breed here plus I need a kitten for my feral cat to bond with, as she is frightened and hostile towards adult cats. She was always an excellent mom, and she does like female kittens! I also have her son, and he is equally gentle and kind.

The breeder I found shows his cats, supports rescues, and spays and neuters all pet quality kittens before sale which I like. I don't want to support disreputable breeders.

I just must overcome any guilt at actually buying a cat, since I deal with the homeless on a daily basis.

Thanks again for your input!
post #4 of 14
Well, for most Birman breeders that I know, they breed their cats in order to produce show cats with which to improve the breed. Unlike breeders for other more popular cats, they don't breed just to sell the kittens. Instead, they sell as pets the kittens who's genes would not improve the bloodline - so you're still providing a home for a cat who needs one!

Just to make sure, this kitten will be indoor only, won't she? Most Birman breeders are very careful who they sell a kitten to. I know my contract states that I am not allowed to let them be outdoors on their own. Just thought I'd check, since your other cat is a feral, and I don't know whether she is indoor or out.
post #5 of 14
Too bad you're in Canada because I have a beautiful Birman (spayed) for adoption. She is a refugee from Hurricane Katrina. She's absolutely beautiful and oh so sweet. Please try to adopt from a rescue organization or a rescuer. As long as people keep supporting breeders, the overflow of animals in our shelters and on our streets will never end. Until no animal is put to death because there are not enough homes, please adopt instead of going to a breeder.
post #6 of 14
There is absolutely no reason you shouldn't consider a pedigreed cat. There is no shame in it nor should you feel the need to explain yourself to anyone. You have obviously given quite generously of yourself to rescues and other needy cats so I don't think anyone can say you haven't given back to the feline community.

Do what makes you feel good and don't worry about what others have to say about it.
post #7 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by gayef
There is absolutely no reason you shouldn't consider a pedigreed cat. There is no shame in it nor should you feel the need to explain yourself to anyone. You have obviously given quite generously of yourself to rescues and other needy cats so I don't think anyone can say you haven't given back to the feline community.

Do what makes you feel good and don't worry about what others have to say about it.
I heartily agree. There is no need to feel guilty because you want a beautiful Birman and you don't need to justify it to anyone.

I raised a bunch of cats needing homes before I finally decided to get my much wanted Blue Point Siamese. He and his sister Mika bring so much joy to our lives - we all can hardly wait to get home after work to be with them.

I know that in years to come I'll again rescue and pamper non-pedigreed cats, but for now I'm living my dream and enjoying every minute of it.

You go girl - get that kitty of your dreams!
post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 
Patsy, I know about all the homeless cats - I'm a rescuer myself and will continue to rescue and foster stray and abandoned cats as long as I can!
We have rescued and placed hundreds of kitties (not to mention dogs, birds and even miniature sheep!) We s/n ferals and will help any animal in need.

If there were any way to get a Birman kitten through rescue, I would do it in a heartbeat. I have searched the entire internet again and again and have none closer to me than California - about 3000 miles.
http://search.petfinder.com/petnote/...?petid=4957395

Believe me, I also urge people to adopt and have a great dislike for breeders pumping out litters of untitled and unhealth tested animals merely to make money and cash in on a fad.

But if someone comes to us asking if we have a Cairn Terrier, Siberian cat or some other breed that will never be found in rescue here, I tell them to do research and find a reputable breeder and to NEVER support mills/petstores or bybers.

Quote:
Just to make sure, this kitten will be indoor only, won't she? Most Birman breeders are very careful who they sell a kitten to
Yes, this breeder specifies indoors only, NO declawing and pet quality kittens are s/n before going to new homes at 12+ weeks old.

My feral cat stays indoors as well which is why she needs a gentle companion.
post #9 of 14
I thought she would be. But with some people, you never know. There's an email going around the listserv from a lady who wanted an unaltered female so that she could breed it to her Siamese to "see what they would produce."

A breeder would be a great idea, since you're looking for a specific personality in your kitten. You'll be able to find a gentle kitten, instead of a hyper-active rambunctious one that would frighten your poor feral to death. Good luck - we want pictures when you get her!

Also, did you see the classified ads on the Birman website I posted? That's how I got my boys.
post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 
No I didn't see classified ads on the site you linked. Where are they? The other link, the Birmanbreeder.com, does not work.
post #11 of 14
Strange, it works for me. Try this link for the classified ads.
http://pub6.bravenet.com/classified/...55210088&cpv=2
post #12 of 14
I made the decision last month to get a Birman and was lucky to have found a breeder nearby. I get to take her home in March (little Blue Point girl) and can't wait! I went to visit the breeder 2 weeks ago and fell instantly in love with all of the kittens (it was a litter of 4 born in December and the other 3 were already sold). The breeder raises them "underfoot" so they have the run of the house and were obviously well taken care of. This will be my first experience with a Birman and I definitely think I made the right choice! I hope you are able to find an available kitten soon. You won't regret it.
post #13 of 14
Thread Starter 
And who wouldn't fall in love with these beauties!! Such cuteness should be outlawed!

Here are two kittens from the breeder I am talking to:


Sandtigress, that link worked, but it's breeders also and very far away! If I choose to get a kitten from the breeder here, he's only 2 hours away so I can visit and see what his place is like.
post #14 of 14
That's good, I just didn't know where you were from and hoped the link would be helpful. They are such cuties!!!
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