Thursday, December 10, 2020

Siamese: The Social Butterflies of the Cat World


Tylan is a handsome seal-point Siamese who came to the United States after being rescued from Bangkok, Thailand.

My cat, Tylan, is a handsome seal-point Siamese. Tylan was rescued from Bangkok, Thailand. He was being cared for by a cat hoarder who rescued him from Bangkok's streets. True to a Siamese's nature, Tylan is loving, affectionate, and people-oriented despite the extraordinary challenges he's faced in his life.

I've been owned by Siamese for more than 15 years now. While their gorgeous appearance is what initially drew me to the breed, it is the breed's personality characteristics that stole my heart. I have no doubt that after you read about the Siamese, you'll fall in love with them, too.


Siamese cats originated in Siam, which is now Thailand. The Siamese was first depicted in an ancient manuscript called, “Tamra Maew” (Cat Poems), which dates from 1350. The breed made its first appearance in Europe in 1871 at London's Crystal Palace Cat Show. The first Siamese cat arrived in the United States in 1879. The cat, named Siam, was a gift to President Rutherford B. Hayes from the American Consul in Bangkok.

The Siamese occurred as a result of a natural genetic mutation. The Siamese have been instrumental in the development of several other cat breeds over the years, including the Balinese, Havana Brown, Javanese, Colorpoint Shorthair, Burmese, Tonkinese, Birman, Savannah, Bengal, Snowshoe, Oriental, Himalayan, and Ocicat.

Tylan loves tummy rubs. He actually follows me around the house and demands them from me throughout the day.


The original Siamese cats were in no way extreme. Rather, the breed's head, body, and tail were medium in size. In the 1950s and 1960s, show judges and breeders began to prefer the more extreme look of the modern Siamese. The modern or, “show-style” Siamese have an elongated, muscular body with a long neck and a thin, long tail that tapers into a fine point.

The Siamese's head forms a perfect triangle, from the tip of its nose to the tips of each of its ears. The breed has striking, expressive blue eyes and large, wide-set ears. Siamese cats that originated from Thailand often had kinked tails. However, kinked tails have nearly been eliminated from the breed because they are seen as a, “flaw” by breeders and cat show judges. Some street cats in Thailand still have kinked tails.

Today, there are two types of Siamese cats – the traditional or, “old-style,” and the modern or, “show-style.” The International Cat Association (TICA) and the World Cat Federation now accept the traditional Siamese for show under the new breed, Thai.

All Siamese cats carry the Himalayan gene. The gene is a mutation at the C locus, which causes partial albinism. Siamese also have a defective form of tyrosinase, which accounts for the breed's pointed pattern. Tyrosinase is an enzyme that plays a role in melanin production. Melanin is the main pigment in a cat's hair and skin that gives it its color. The mutated form of tyrosinase is heat sensitive; it doesn't function at a cat's normal body temperature but becomes active in cooler areas of the body. That's why Siamese, and other pointed cats, have darker coloration on their faces, ears, legs, and tails.

Siamese kittens are born white or cream-colored. They begin to develop their points over the first few months of their lives. These kitties tend to get darker in color as they age. Those who live in colder climates tend to be darker in color than Siamese who live in warmer climates.

You are probably the most familiar with seal point Siamese cats, which have pale fawn bodies and dark brown, nearly black, points. However, the breed comes in many beautiful colors, including blue, lilac, tortoiseshell, chocolate, flame (red), smoke, and cream. Siamese cats can also display a lynx (tabby) pattern on their points, which can occur in any color.

Tylan enjoys playing. His favorite toys include catnip mice and crinkle balls. 


If you like to chat, find a Siamese to spend time with! Siamese are known talkers; they want to tell you all about their days, what they're thinking, and how they feel. Tylan tells me about everything! If he's hungry, he'll let me know. If he's bored, he'll meow at me for attention. And, if he doesn't like something, you'll know it!

Siamese cats are very social and are known for being, “people cats.” They tend to bond very strongly to one person. They will follow you around the house, supervising your activities. A Siamese may join you in your bed with his head on your pillow. These cats tend to get along well with children and other pets, making them great family pets. Siamese cats thrive on interaction with their humans and will become depressed if they don't get enough interaction with their people.

Tylan definitely embodies these traits. He shares a strong bond with me and constantly follows me around the apartment, supervising everything I do. He doesn't want to miss an opportunity for an extra snack or treat!

Because Siamese cats are so social, they do not do well being left alone for hours at a time. If you work outside the home, you may want to get a second Siamese so that the cats can keep each other company while you're away.

As a breed, Siamese cats are very intelligent. You don't want to leave these kitties home alone without something to entertain them, or you may come home to find your toilet paper shredded all over the living room floor. One way you can keep your Siamese's mind active and engaged while you're away is to give him a puzzle toy containing his favorite dry cat food.

Don't be surprised if your Siamese cat steals his treats from the cabinet you keep them in or knocks objects off your bookshelf to get your attention.

Siamese cats love to play. They will often play fetch with you. They may also enjoy interactive toys, such as fishing pole toys and laser pointers. Tylan's favorite toys are small catnip mice and crinkle balls. 

Siamese cats are beautiful, communicative, and loyal. You should consider yourself lucky if a Siamese cat chooses you to be his human.


  1. Thank you for the information!
    The vet thinks that Chili Bruce has Siamese blood; his head and body shape, even though he's completely black. He's also our more talkative kitty.

  2. That is such a great bit of Info. Dads first heart kitty was a Siamese and he would have one now if we all had not fell into his home. Love Tylan you good looking kitty

  3. It was awesome learning more about Siamese kitties. My human's first cat as an adult had a Siamese mother. He was black, but his body, voice, and personality was 100% Siamese!

  4. That was lots of fun to read and we always love seeing you handsome Tylan!

  5. Nice post. I hope to be owned by a Siamese someday.

  6. Great information! And looking good, Tylan!