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10 Types of Birman Cats: Colors, Variations, & Patterns (With Pictures)

Written by: Christian Adams

Last Updated on May 15, 2024 by Catster Editorial Team

Birman cat kitten with beautiful blue eyes lying on the floor

10 Types of Birman Cats: Colors, Variations, & Patterns (With Pictures)

What is a Birman? According to Buddhist stories, the Birman cat was created by a Burmese goddess. The tale tells of a litter of pure white cats that once lived in a temple dedicated to her.

But it wasn’t until the murder of one of the temple’s priests that the breed came to be. It was said that after the priest’s death, one of the cats stared into an effigy of the goddess, transforming it into a shiny golden color.1

Although the Birman is generally regarded for their traditional seal point coloring (more on that later), the breed can come in many different colorings. Let’s take a look at the different colors and patterns the Birman can take on.

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The 10 Types of Birman Cats

1. Seal Point Birman

Seal point Birman
Image Credit: Antranias, Pixabay

This is the classic Birman cat color and pattern most think of when the breed is mentioned. Seal point coloring is a golden cream (or beige) color with dark seal brown markings found primarily around the face, ears, and paws.


2. Blue Point Birman

Blue point is another classic pattern found for the Birman. It’s extremely similar to the Seal Point Birman. However, instead of dark seal brown markings, you’ll find blue markings instead. Blue doesn’t necessarily mean “blue”, either. In the cat world, blue is just another fancy name for gray.


3. Chocolate Point

sacred birman cat in the garden
Image Credit: Jeannette1980, Pixabay

The chocolate point pattern follows the same general look as the blue and seal point. However, there are a few distinct differences. First off, instead of a golden cream color, the base color is intense ivory. The markings are a deep chocolate brown—much richer than those of the seal point coloring.


4. Lilac Point

Lilac point is a very unique point pattern for the Birman. The point pattern remains the same; however, the colors are quite special. The base coat is a pale or white color similar to the original cats of legend. The point markings are a faded pinkish gray. Lilac point Birmans are one of the rarer patterns due to the recessive genes required to create the pattern.


5. Red Point

This color pattern features bright reddish-gold points that border on orange. With this pattern, the point colors tend to fade into the pale base coat. However, there’s something remarkable about this pattern. Redpoint Birmans tend to exhibit some tabby features and markings.


6. Cream Point

Cream point is the most unique pure colorpoint pattern. You might not even really see the point markings, either. And that’s because the point markings are a light coffee cream color against a golden or beige base coat. On occasion, the base coat can be paler or whitish, leading the markings to become more visible.


7. Tortoiseshell

Tortoiseshell points are a wonderful-looking pattern. Instead of pure color marking, the points consist of three or four different colors, all spotted together. The base coat of the Birman can either be ivory or golden, with the points consisting of blue, chocolate, seal, and there are even black burman cats.


8. Smoke

Sleepy Smoke Birman
Image Credit: casion, Pixabay

Just as blue coloring refers to gray, smoke generally refers to silver. It’s just a fancy way of saying it. As smoke coloring pertains to Birmans, it’s unlike any other pattern on this list. And that’s because it’s a smoke-on-smoke pattern. The points are a darker silver laid on a light silver background.


9. Tabby

Tabby Birmans aren’t necessarily defined by their distinct colors. They can come in any of the colorways mentioned above. And that’s for base coat and point colorings. However, they will exhibit the standard markings of any tabby cat, including the signature “M” marking on their foreheads.


10. Silver Tabby

Silver Birman tabbies are a special variety of tabby. They’re the rarest form of Birman, with only a few breeders focusing on this pattern. They’re extremely similar to smoke Birmans; however, they possess tabby markings.

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Coats of Many Colors

Birmans may come in many different colors and patterns. However, one thing is certain—they’re all adorable and lovely creatures, no matter the color. Being a Birman parent is a true joy and pleasure.

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Featured Image Credit: Daydream Photographie, Shutterstock

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