Who doesn’t remember the song “We are Siamese if you please, We are Siamese if you don’t please” the classic from Lady & the Tramp. I’m sure a lot of you are currently familiar with the likes of Disney+ during this COVID-19 pandemic. But it is a song that always comes into my head when I see Siamese patients! I think it sums them up purrfectly!
Siamese cats are beautiful, they come in a variety of different coat colours and even iris colours. They can be very striking in appearance. However they do come with strong personalities. Siamese are one of the oldest breeds of domesticated cats and possibly originated in Thailand in the 14th century.
Siamese are definitely one of the most chatty of the breeds, they will meow for food, attention, to be let outside – definitely more than the domestic short haired! So be prepared. They can come with distinctive traits including kinks in their tail and occasionaly crossed eyes which sadly are part of their genetic make up. These things do not impact on their quality of life.
There are a few health problems that we do see in this breed including:
Often at a young age Siamese can develop very bad gingivitis (inflammation of the gums) and periodontal disease, often requiring frequent dental proceudres
Again at a young age we often treat this breed for kidney disease which can include polycsystic disease, amyloidosis or chronic kidney failure. We often see clinical signs of weight loss, increasing in drinking and illness .
Siamese are prone to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, this can lead to heart failure. It is a non curable condition but can be managed with medication.
The final interesting fact about Siamese is their coat colour is controlled by temperature. So at their extremities i.e. tail, face and legs there is an enzyme that becomes turned on by the cooler temperature and accounts for the different coloured fur. So if your female Siamese is spayed the vet may ask if you are happy for us to perform this on their side, their coat will grow back a different colour, but will be replaced by normal coloured fur when the hair cycle is completed so please don’t worry.
If you would like to speak to any of our vets as to whether a Siamese cat is right for you please don’t hesiatet to cotact your nreaest Swaynes branch.