From what I've read they are supposed to be loud and the most "doglike" of the cat breeds. How true is that? How affectionate are they, and how do they show it? Are they "in your face"? Is it a healthy breed? What are some characteristics of the breed?
I'm a fan of the traditional or "applehead" siamese. They're what siamese cats looked like 50 years ago. They love to talk at you and they are quite affectionate, but they can be more than a little demanding. They're also very intelligent and have been known to learn how to open doors on their own! As far as health problems go, the only one I know of is that they tend to have pretty bad teeth. Brushing their teeth several times a week will stave off those problems.
As always, seek out a reputable breeder if you're looking for a specific breed of cat. Never buy from a pet store.
This is a quote from the Fancier's Breeder Referral List about Siamese cats (regular type):
"It is vocal, lively, and affectionate. The breed can be very demanding and should not be left alone for long periods of time. Daily play and interaction are critical to a Siamese's emotional and mental well-being. Active feline companionship will help keep a lonely Siamese happy, but there is no substitute for human interaction as well. This breed is not for those looking for a quiet companion -- Siamese are intelligent and if you don't give them something to do, they will find something to do instead!"
Siamese are intelligent cats (well all cat's are) and they are very social, so try to get two if you plan on getting a kitten and can't be home a lot (like working outside the house for several hours). A pair or more can keep themselves company and you will be happier about it. Siamese can also be trained tricks and learn to fetch (which is pretty "dog like").
I've only had non-full-breed cats before, but spending time with a Siamese for 3 weeks straight was a great experience. They aren't "up in your face" type of cats, but they sure like to be with you, be petted and have your full attention. But like all animals (and humans) they also like their own space now and then.
One thing that amazed me with the Siamese we know was that he was so smart. I don't like to have a cat sleeping in my bed at night and I told him once "no cat's in the bed" and he got it! Actually, the first time I told him that was 3-4 years ago and when we spent Christmas with him (the 3 week vacation) he knew to not be in the bed where I slept. No problem jumping up on the couch and sit and cuddle with me there, but the bed was out of bound and he knew it (and was grumpy about it of course).
I can't wait until we get our two Siamese kittens in 3.5 weeks. A brother and sister. We are going to "fix" him as soon as the vet says it's ok. The sister is proably going to have one litter before she gets fixed. The breeder who we are buying the cats from are well reknown and she wants to breed with our female with a new siamese cat she has, so we're going to do a joint venture there.
I'm no pro when it comes to Siamese, but I've read up a lot of info on the Internet before we decided what breed to get. I wanted to be sure it was the right breed for us, since the cat we've learnt to know might not have been a pure bred Siamese (well he sure is!). Then we were lucky to find a breeder close to us (takes about an hour drive) that just happen to have a cat that were inseminated recently. So first we had to wait a few weeks to find out if the cat was actually pregnant and then another few weeks for the kittens to be born and then 12 weeks for the cats to be ready to be delivered. So, it almost feels like a real pregnancy, all that waiting! 3.5 weeks left before they can come home!!!!
Oh, a great fun comic strip which has a Siamese featured can teach you a lot about Siamese cats. It's almost scary how to the point the comic strip is.
I mentioned this in another post - I met my first siamese at the shelter, and having been around cats all my life I can sure say it was the most different cat I had met. VERY vocal - to the point it sounded in pain (in pain because it wasn't being petted). I mean - literally, when there was a person in the room it was making this long continual meow until someone started petting it (and then it would have shorter continuous meows). Adorable though - very pretty eyes, and soft fur. But I don't know if I could take something that needy.
Yes, Siamese dislikes to be alone and breeders suggest to have two cats so they can keep each other company. But it doesn't have to be two Siamese, it could be a crossbreed cat or even a dog. It's not that they crave attention 24/7 and want to be petted that much, but they dislike to be alone. I can just imagine that the cat in the shelter was howling, all alone in a closed confindment.
I had a applehead sealpoint siamese as a child. He was 19 and I was 13 when he died. He was I am convinced actually a guardian angel sent to me and I was devastated when he passed away. He was EXTREMELY smart, could open doors, taught HIMSELF how to use the toilet, and KNEW when I was upset before I even started crying. He guarded my door at night, and on occassion woke my mother up to tell her I was having another epilieptic seizure. I outgrew the epilepsy at 13, and he died about a month later. I sometimes wonder if he was sent just to protect me and watch over me and warn my mother of my condition and when I grew out of it his job was done and he passed on.
I am now very bonded to my Bengal Envy, but am considering getting a siamese mix from the shelter as a companion to her. There will never be another Sammy.
Payge, what a heart warming story! I'm sure you are right, Sammy was there to protect you. And what made my hair stand out of my neck is that one of our kittens are named Sam (Sammy) and I have a condition that could be fatal.
Whats even odder is my mother told me when they got Sam they also got his sister that they named Suzy, she died before I was born in a horrible accident apparently she climbed into the dryer when my mother was doing laundry and she didnt notice. Im so freakishly afraid of that happening with Envy I lock her in the bathroom when im doing laundry now.
Sam & Suzy... hmmm... I sure hope Suzy won't have an accident, would hate to lose her (or Sam).
Luckily we don't have a drier or washing machine in the apartment (there's a shared one in the basment and we're only 6 that uses it). The only thing I'll have to be careful about is always putting down the lid on the toilet and make sure the windows are closed on the balcony (all glassed-in with sliding windows that opens up too big).
Going to kitty proof the house as much as possible, all cables are already off the floor, but I'm sure there's lots of stuff we haven't thought about (going to check plants this coming week so they are ok).
Im sure her and Sam will live a long healthy life as your forever friends. Besides our Sam and Suzy were applehead seal points. But if you do happen to have the reincarnation of my Sam, tell him I said thank you and I love you.
Payge, well both Sam and Suzy are Seal Points and the name Sam just came to us out of the blue. I think he wanted to be called Sam. Same with Suzy. So *if* Sam's your Sam incarnated I'm going to thank him from you and I will treat him as a prince (well, he is).
This is amazing and I have a great feeling about this.
(btw, sorry about "hogging" this thread about our Sam's)