Sacred Birmans

Albafeles Sacred Birmans
Claudia Zaino

tel. 0039-338-7566536

e mail sacro di birmania



Cuccioli Sacro di Birmania in vari colori
Albafeles Bellerofonte, seal point

Sacred Birman cat's description:

Body and structure

Standard FIFE

Scale of points

Points to obtain qualifications

Points to obtain Certificates

Colours & EMS codes (with pictures )


Albafeles Sacred Birmans
Albafeles Luna Rossa &
IcingSugar's Emily
Albafeles Sacred Birmans
in the photo: Albafeles Nike
colour: seal-tabby point, 1 month old

The Sacred Cat of Burma is a fine breed cat with a fascinating appearance.
Its magnetic look, sweet expression and charming appearance are due to a rigorous standard (= description of the Birman) which makes selecting this breed very difficult. Incorrect breeding may easily result in the loss of the sweetness and gentleness of its expression.
Parents well adhering to the standard rarely give birth to kittens of the same level, suitable for continuing the breed selection.
However, the Birman is often chosen as a pet for his loveable temperament.


Body and structure:

Albafeles Sacred Cat of Burma - body and structure
in the photo: Albafeles Minotauro
colour: seal-point, 3 months old
Albafeles sacro di birmania - corpo e truttura
Albafeles Naxos
colore: blue point

It is generally a medium-sized cat - not so big as a Maine Coon, but not small either - with robust bone structure.
The body is slightly elongated compared to the legs, i.e. the legs are short and robust compared to the body. Males are usually bigger and have a more massive head and a more majestic ruff than females'.

Standard faults:

- cobby structure: the body must not be short and rounded
- high legs compared to the body
- slim structure, thin figure

A female Birman with a slim structure should not be employed for reproduction, both in order to avoid out-of-standard cats, and for the sake of the cat's (and therefore the kittens') health.



Albafeles Sacred Birmans - fur
Albafeles Romeo
seal-tabby point, 3 months old
Albafeles Sacred Birmans - fur
in the photo: Albafeles' Minerva
colour: blue point

The Birman's fur is silky, soft, semi-long and with little underfur. The fur is short on the muzzle, gradually becoming longer on cheek, and long and thick around the neck, just as if it were a lion's mane (called "ruff"). It is long on the back and on the hips, lightly shortening on the legs and resulting in funny tufts of longer fur among the toe pads.

Standard faults:
- woolly fur
- presence of underfur
- matting and knotting fur
- rough fur
- fur too short
- fur too long



Albafeles Sacred Birmans - colour
Sinh's Heirs Etoile
colour: chocolate point
Albafeles Sacred Birmans - colour
Albafeles Odyssea
colour: seal point

The Sacred cat of Burma is a colourpoint cat. The points are: muzzle, ears, legs, tail, genitals.
The rest of the body is of the same tone as points, but in a washed-out, almost white version.

Standard faults:
- little contrast between points and body
- white spots on the body
- ghost marks presents also in an adult (except for the tabby variants and the colours red-point and cream-point and red areas of torties).

A Birman with white spots should not be employed for reproduction because it is a fault that will be transmitted to the offspring.
It is not visible in the phenotype, but it is present in the children's genotype.
It is a serious aesthetic fault, liable for disqualification at cat shows.
A Birman with white spots on the body is regarded as a pet for families.



Albafeles Sacred Birmans - Morphology
in the photo: Albafeles' Nympha
colour: seal point
Albafeles Sacred Birmans - Type
in the photo: Albafeles Nour
colour: blue-tabby point

The Birman cat's type is unique. Its characteristics are not similar to any other breed's.
The head has a rather robust bone structure and full cheeks.
The muzzle is heart-shaped, with prominent cheekbones and soft features.
The eyes are far from each other and well proportioned on the muzzle.
All the parts must be in harmony to convey the sweet, open expression.

Standard faults:
- Siamese-like, triangular shape
- Persian-like, round shape
- eyes close to each other

Albafeles Sacred Birmans - Roman profile
in the photo: Albafeles' Procida
colour: blue point, 3 months old
Albafeles Sacred Birmans - Roman profile
in the photo: Albafeles' Naxos
colour: blue point, 6 months old

The forehead is slightly rounded, the nose is medium-length, i.e. not too long (as in the Siamese cat) and not too short either (as in the Persian cat).
It has a slight stop - a depression of the nose channel in the eye area (therefore it's not straight as the Norwegian Forest Cat's).
The nose's profile is rounded, i.e. with a small bump, called "Roman profile".
The tip of the nose is downward and must be aligned to the chin by an ideal vertical line.

Standard faults:
- lack of a stop
- lack of a Roman profile (without a bump)
- receding chin

a prominent Roman profile is difficult to achieve in kittens although their parents have it. It is a peculiarity of the Birman which is often lost while breeding. The new colours introduced in the breed stem from mating with Persian cats. This is why kittens are often born without such a profile. It is considered to be a fault at cat shows.



Albafeles Sacred Birmans - Mask
in the photo: Albafeles' Minerva
colour: blue-point
Albafeles Sacred Birmans - Mask
in the photo: Albafeles' Lady Oscar
colour: blue-point, 2 years old

The mask is part of the Birman's coloured points. It is the area placed on the muzzle that frames eyes, cheeks and mouth, with the nose tip in the middle. It has a diamond shape and it is clearly separated from the ears.

Standard faults:
- incomplete mask, which particularly in light colours (e.g. chocolate-point) is often limited to the nose
- too big a mask, which reaches the ears and part of the ruff
- white spot on the chin



Albafeles Ramses - eyes
Albafeles Ramses
colour: blue-tabby point
Albafeles Nike - eyes
Albafeles Nike
colour: seal-tabby-point

They are among the elements that mostly give the fascinating and magnetic appearance to the Birman.
A wrong breeding programme which does not concentrate also on the eyes standard may result in Birman cats with questionable beauty and captivation.
The Birman's eyes have a slightly oval shape and are of an intense blue colour. The cat usually looks in the eyes of those who intensely stare at it.

Standard faults:
- squint
- small eyes
- eyes close to each other
- round shape
- light and feeble colour
- dull and glazed colour
- colour not uniform, with lighter or darker streaks
- outer parts faded compared to the centre

Squint is a typical fault in colourpoint cats, which has been almost eliminated for good by the breeders' selection. A Birman having kittens with such a fault should not be employed for breeding. It is an excellent specimen which will keep families company.

Round-shaped eyes cause most of the Birman cat's charisma to disappear. A specimen with such eyes should be employed for breeding only if its other features are very adhering to the standard, and in any case it should mate with a partner with a more intriguing and fascinating look.



Albafeles Sacred Birmans - ears
in the photo: Albafeles Ophelia
colour: blue point, 1 year old
Albafeles Sacred Birmans - ears
in the photo: Albafeles' Luna Rossa
colour: seal-tortie point, 2 years old

The Birman cat's ears are not too small (as in the Persian cat) and not too big either (as in the Maine Coon). They are medium-sized, placed slightly oblique and forward, not too much on the top of the skull but well-distanced instead. The tips are rounded. The shape of the ears is that of an isosceles triangle, the base of which is the same as the height.

Standard faults:

- ears placed too high, too long or sharp
- ears placed too close to each other
- ears bent backwards



Albafeles Sacred Birmans - tail
in the photo: IcingSugar's Minosse
colour: lilac-tabby point, 7 months old
Albafeles Sacred Birmans - tail
Loto incanto d'oriente before a judge
colour: blue-tabby-point

It is medium-length and plume-shaped. It is usually kept upwards and shakes every step the cat takes.
The fur is thick, long and does not mat.
The last part of the tail is rounded, unlike the Ragdoll's, which ends with a point.
The tail must be long enough to touch the shoulder.

Standard faults:
- short tail
- pointed tail
- tail with little fur



Albafeles Sacred Birmans - legs
in the photo: Albafeles Minotauro
colour: seal-point, 3 months old
Albafeles Sacred Birmans - legs
in the photo: Albafeles Minotauro
colour: seal-point, 3 months old

The legs are robust with big and round feet, reminding those of their sibling felines in the savannah.
Toe pads are usually pink.

Standard faults:

- slim legs
- long legs



Albafeles sacro di birmania - guanti
in the photo: Albafeles Otello
colour: seal-point, 1 month old
Albafeles sacro di birmania - guanti
in the photo: IcingSugar's Frodo Baggins
colour: blue-point, 3 years old

The main feature distinguishing this breed from the others is the presence of gloves - the fingers of all paws have white fur.
It's the only white part of the body.

"Perfect" gloves are difficult to obtain in kittens even if their parents' are within the upper and lower limits.
This makes the breeding of show quality cats even more difficult.
Besides, the gene responsible for white fur may bring tufts of white fur also on other parts of body.

Albafeles Minotauro - guanti

nella foto: Albafeles Onassis
colour: seal-tabby-point, 1 month old
limiti delo standard del gatto birmano
Gloves' limits

Upper and lower limits of white gloves:
In accordance with the Birman cat's standard, the white colour must be between the joint and the area between the fingers and metacarp.
White fur may be a bit higher on rear legs.
In the sole sheath in rear legs, gloves end with a point. Gloves should be symmetrical and have the same length.
If gloves exceed those limits, the Birman cat is often not regarded as show-quality.
Several breeders make the mistake of attaching too much importance to the gloves, even considering them the only parameter for distinguishing a show-quality specimen from a pet.

Standard faults:
- asymmetrical gloves
- tufts of coloured fur in gloves
- interruption of the glove and resume after a part of coloured fur
- low or high gloves beyond the standard limits
- runners, gloves climbing up beyond the standard limits
- lack of upside-down V's
- lack of glove on one or more fingers
- lack of glove on one or more legs

N.B.: Gloves must be present in a for-breeding cat, though irregular and/or not symmetrical. A Birman without gloves may have kittens with gloves, but also put the future offspring in jeopardy. Such a fault will appear in grandchildren.


Sacred cat of Burma: standard FIFE

Category II

Sacred Birman Standard


size: medium in size


shape:strong bone
forehead: slightly rounded
cheeks: full, somewhat rounded
nose: of medium length without stop, but with a slight indentation
chin: firm


shape: rather small with rounded tips
placement: set slightly tipped, not too upright on the skull with good width between


shape: not quite round, slightly oval
colour: deep blue


structure: slightly long body. Males must be more massive than females


short and strong
paws: rounded
gloves: the special feature of the Sacred Birman is the white feet, called "gloves", on both the front and hind feetthese gloves must be absolutely pure whitethey should stop at the articulation or at the transition of toes to metacarpals, over which they should not extendslightly longer white gloves on the hind feet can be toleratedon the back of the hind feet the white gloves end in pointsthe ideal "gauntlets" end in inverted "V" and extend 1/2 to 3/4 of the way up the hocklower or higher gauntlets are acceptable but should not go beyond the hockit is important that the gloves are equally long and show a symmetry of white, on either the two front or two hind feet, or even better, on all four feet.


of medium length, forming a plume


structure: long to semi-long, according to the actual parts of the body: short on the face, gradually growing longer on the cheeks to a full frill, long on the back and the flankssilky texturelittle undercoat
colour: shows all characteristics known from the colourpointed cats, but all four feet are white (gloves)the points include the face, ears, legs, tail and genitalsthe points shall be even and in good contrast to the body colourthe body colour and colour of the belly is a very pale eggshell; the back is golden beige in all varietiesonly in adult cats the colour of the points and the body colour are fully developed


the Sacred Birman shows a special morphology, which is unique for the breed


coat: pure white or coloured patches on the chest or the belly

Faults precluding
the certificate

nose: incompletely pigmented nose leather
legs: creeping up of the white on the sides or the reverse sides of the gloves of front and/or hind feet (known as "runners"); absence of "gauntlets" on the hind feet
coat: white patching in the coloured areas or the reverse; a white patch on the genitals


Sacred cat of Burma: scale of points

general shape, cheeks, nose, jaws and teeth, forehead, chin placement and shape of the ears shape and colour of the eyes
shape, size, bone structure legs and shape of paws
Tail length and shape
Coat body colour and points
quality and texture, length
Gloves on the front feet
on the hind feet
uniformity and symmetry of gauntlets and gloves


Sacred cat of Burma: points to obtain qualifications

for a minimum of points
very good
for a minimum of points
good for a minimum of points 61/100


Sacred cat of Burma: points to obtain Certificates

the cat concurs in the class of Grand International Champion/Premier, can be awarded a CACE/CAPE if it has obtained a minimum of points 97/100

the cat concurs in the class of International Champion/Premier, can be awarded a CAGCIB/CAGPIB if it has obtained a minimum of points 96/100

the cat concurs in the class of Champion/Premier, can be awarded a CACIB/CAPIB if it has obtained a minimum of points 95/100

the cat can be awarded a CAC/CAP if it has obtained a minimum of points 93/100

for Nomination title are necessaries points 97/100

it's necessary at least 3 cats of the same variety (colours), the "Best in Variety" title cannot be refuse if the exhibit has obtained the necessary points 95/100


Sacred cat of Burma: Colours & EMS codes

Self Colours Lynx Colours
Nympha, seal-point Albafeles Nympha
sea point
Nike, seal-tabby-point
Albafeles Nike
seal-tabby point
SBI n 21
Minerva, blue-point Albafeles Minerva
blue point
Ocean, blue-tabby-point Albafeles Ocean Blue
blue-tabby point
SBI a 21
Etoile, chocolate point Sinh's Heirs Etoile
chocolate point
Phoenix, chocolate-tabby point Albafeles Phoenix
chocolate-tabby point
SBI b 21
Polly, lilac point Albafeles Polly
lilac point
lilac-tabby-point Albafeles Paride
lilac-tabby point
SBI c 21
red-point Albafeles' Nettuno
red point
red-tabby-point Image not available
red-tabby point
SBI d 21
cream-point Albafeles' Nathan
cream point
cream-tabby-point Image not available
cream-tabby point
SBI e 21
seal-tortie point
Albafeles Luna Rossa
seal-tortie point
seal-tortie-tabby-point Image not available
seal-tortie-tabby point
SBI f 21
blue-tortie-point Albafeles' Hurricane
blue-tortie point
blue-tortie-tabby-point Image not available
blue-tortie-tabby point
SBI g 21
chocolate-tortie-point Albafeles Calliope
chocolate-tortie point
chocolate-tortie-tabby-point Image not available
chocolate-tortie-tabby point
SBI h 21
lilac-tortie-point Image not available
lilac-tortie point
lilac-tortie-tabby-point Image not available
lilac-tortie-tabby point
SBI j 21


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