Long-Haired Siamese Cats (and Other Relatives)

Here we take a look at long-haired Siamese cats, as well as other long-haired and short-haired cats related to the breed. We also look at other cats that may seem like related breeds of Siamese cats, but which actually aren't.

The Siamese cat breed has lent its genes to so many cats that now have their own breed names. Let's start with the long-haired relatives.

Long-Haired Relatives

The Balinese – the Long Haired Siamese Cat

The Balinese cat breed really is a long haired Siamese - it was developed from the long haired kittens that occasionally appear in Siamese litters.

These long haired kittens were thought of as accidental, but in the 1940s two US cat breeders began developing them into their own distinct breed.

Balinese look like Siamese cats with long silky coats and distinctive plume-like tails.

Balinese catBlue Lynx Point Balinese - note the fluffy tail
Image: Wikimedia Commons | D Mirjam Kessler

The Javanese

The Javanese cat is similar to the Balinese. Also long-haired with feather-like tails, there's confusion surrounding Javanese cats.

The Cat Fanciers' Association considers Balinese cats found in any colors other than the four main point colors of Seal, Chocolate, Blue and Lilac to be Javanese.

In other words, the Red, Cream, Lynx and Tortie point colors would all be Javanese. But in Europe, the name Javanese is sometimes given to long haired Oriental (one-colored) cats, too. Hence the confusion!

The Himalayan or Colorpoint Longhair

'Himmies' are a Siamese/Persian cross. Their body type is stocky like a Persian's and their coat is thick and long, but their coloring is pointed, making them look like long haired Siamese cats.

I must confess to a weakness for Himalayan Persian cats, these are absolutely gorgeous cats! They have fluffy tails, thick ruffs around their necks and bright blue eyes.

Himalayan Persian catSeal Point Himalayan
Image © iStockphoto | Suzanne Mulligan

Short-Haired Relatives

The Snowshoe

Snowshoes (often, mistakenly, called Snowshoe Siamese) were first developed in the United States through the breeding of Siamese cats with American Shorthairs.

Image with thanks to and copyright © Liz Briggs

Their body shape combines the stocky build of the American Shorthair with the body length of the Siamese, and like their Siamese forebears they have short coats and brilliant blue eyes.

Their distinguishing features are their four white paws, from where they get the name Snowshoe, and a white inverted 'V' over their noses.

The Tonkinese

The Tonkinese cat breed is a cross between the Burmese and the Siamese. Like their Siamese cousins, Tonkinese are pointed cats, having dark colorpoints that blend into their body color.

Tonkinese catBlue Mink Tonkinese
Image © iStockphoto | Julie Marshall

Their coat color is somewhere between the Burmese and the Siamese – not quite as dark as a Burmese, but neither is it quite as light as a Siamese! Their eyes should be a greeny-blue or aquamarine, not the brilliant blue of Siamese eyes.

Non-Related, Lookalike Breeds

The Birman

Birmans are often mistaken for a long haired type of Siamese, but are more likely to be a completely separate breed, said to have originated in Burma. Their history is rather mysterious.

Blue Point BirmanBlue point Birman (with 'golden' aura)
Image © iStockphoto | David Cannings-Bushell

The Birman cat breed first appeared in Europe in the 1920s, and although modern-day Birmans may have some Siamese genes, this is by no means certain.

The long haired Birmans have bright blue eyes, silky coats and color points, but their most distinguishing feature is their snow-white feet, similar to the Snowshoe's.

The Ragdoll

The Ragdoll cat breed is also sometimes mistakenly known as a long haired Siamese breed, but the founding Ragdoll queen was actually a long haired white cat who was injured in an accident.

Her kittens were found to relax completely when cuddled, making them floppy like the rag doll from which they get their name.

Mitted RagdollThe Mitted Ragdoll - white mittens and chin, thin white stripe on nose
Image © iStockphoto | Linn Currie

Ragdolls are large cats with long silky coats and bushy tails. There are three varieties, the Mitted, the Bicolor and the Colorpoint.

Learn More

Read About Other People’s Long-Haired Cats

See contributions from other visitors to this page.

What Breed Is My Cat? 
Recent visitors have asked for help in identifying their adopted or rescued cat's color or breed. Rescue cats tend not to come with the kind of pedigree …

Leonard Berlioz 
I recently adopted this cat from a private owner off of Craigslist. I was told he was a purebred Snowshoe Siamese but he just doesn't look like any Snowshoe …

I adopted Duster from a no kill shelter last August. I am not sure what type of long hair Siamese or relative he is actually, but honestly, I am happy …

Yuki The Great 
I'm really not exactly sure what kind of cat Yuki is. She is definitely a long haired Siamese of some sort. She is always getting into things and is very …

Our Birman / Snowshoe Siamese 
We love our cat! Her name is Yuuki, and she is very unique. After adopting adult cats over many years, we decided to get a kitten, hoping it would …

Shaggy, My Domestic Longhair Seal Point Feral Kitteh! 
Shaggy was one of five in a litter that a Domestic Shorthair Blue female gave birth to in my backyard three years ago. The father was a long haired Siamese …

Turkish Angora? 
We adopted a sweet kitty from the Austin Siamese Rescue, but after seeing some pics of a Turkish Angora, I wonder if this is what our new baby is, or at …

What Kind of Cat Is This? 
This cat was abandoned on our property just over a month ago. She's gone from hissing and growling at every move to becoming very affectionate and sweet. …

My Balinese 
My cat is a Balinese - very affectionate, loves attention! He reminds me of a dog, he likes to be walked on a leash and goes to the door when he wants …

Solomon, The Mystery Kitten 
Last weekend I rescued a Siamese kitten. I've always admired Siamese from afar but never thought I'd have one of my very own! He was in a pretty bad …

Rescued Pregnant Siamese Cat - Is Zoey a Snowshoe? 
Here is Zoey, who we rescued three weeks ago. She just gave birth to seven kittens - all white (the tan one is really white but mama was too tired to …

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