White Burmilla kitten with large green eyes and pink nose in a close-up.
(Photo Credit: jennybonner | Getty Images)


With a Cheshire cat smile and stunningly good-looks, the Burmilla, a hybrid of the Burmese and Chinchilla Persian cats, is a magical, medium-sized cat with a shimmering silver coat. While not actually magical, this crossbreed exudes an otherworldly and elegant beauty thanks to their large, lined green or gold eyes and tipped fur. Their coats can be short to medium in length, and are usually plush, dense, and luxurious. Females are typically smaller and daintier in size and demeanor, while males tend to be larger and robust, with a stockiness inherited from their Burmese lineage. Burmilla cats can sometimes be referred to as Asian Shaded, referencing their Asian cat breed parentage.

Are Burmilla cats rare?

You’re not likely to encounter a Burmilla cat unless you’re seeking one. This breed was an accidental creation by two cats waiting to breed with other cats, and still remains bred by only a few catteries. As a result, buying a Burmilla cat tends to be an expensive endeavor, costing up to $2,000. Additionally, due to the potential of polycystic kidney disease inherited from the Persian side, it’s critical to choose a respected and vetted breeder. It’s important to consider health over looks with this intelligent and gentle breed, though that shouldn’t be an issue considering they are objectively gorgeous cats.

When considering a Burmilla cat, it’s advisable to prioritize adopting from rescue organizations or shelters to provide a loving home to a cat in need. However, if you decide to purchase a Burmilla kitten, it’s crucial to choose a reputable breeder. Conduct thorough research to ensure that the breeder follows ethical practices and prioritizes the well-being of their cats. Reputable Burmilla cat breeders prioritize the health and temperament of their cats, conduct necessary health screenings, and provide a nurturing environment for the kitties. This active approach ensures that you bring home a healthy and happy kitty while discouraging unethical breeding practices.

Quick Facts

  • Origin: United Kingdom
  • Size: Medium (7-12 pounds)
  • Breed Group: Asian
  • Lifespan: 7-12 years
  • Coat: Short, dense, and luxurious, with a unique “ticked” pattern where each hair has multiple bands of color. Comes in a variety of shades like silver, chocolate, and golden champagne.
  • Temperament: Friendly, playful, affectionate, intelligent, curious, enjoys human interaction and playtime.
  • Exercise Needs: Moderate – thrives on daily playtime and mental stimulation.
  • Training: Easy to train due to their intelligence and desire to please.
  • Grooming: Weekly brushing to prevent matting and maintain their sleek coat.
  • Health: Generally healthy, but some potential for genetic health conditions
  • It can take up to five generations of breeding before the cats are up to Burmilla standard.
  • The eye color of a Burmilla takes up to two years to develop fully.

Burmilla Pictures

Burmilla History

The Burmilla is another example of the accidental creation of a new cat breed. The unplanned mating between a Burmese and a chinchilla Persian in England in 1981 produced four black shaded female kittens with short, thick coats. The breeder realized how attractive such a breed could be and went on to develop what became known as the Burmilla.

The Burmilla is recognized by Britain’s Governing Council of the Cat Fancy and Europe’s Federation Internationale Feline. The breed entered the Cat Fanciers Association Miscellaneous Class in February 2011.

Burmilla Size

These cats are generally medium-sized with a well-balanced and muscular build. Adult Burmilla cats typically weigh between 6 to 12 pounds, with females being on the smaller side of the range.

Burmilla Personality

The Burmilla brings together aspects of the Burmese and the Persian into one sweet, friendly package. He is quietly affectionate and gentle but more extroverted than the typical Persian. He is adventurous but a bit of a klutz, so put away breakables when he is around.

Burmillas remain playful into adulthood. They love their people, but they aren’t excessively demanding of attention. When a lap is available, though, the Burmilla is there.

Burmilla Health

Burmilla cats, like any other cat breed, may be prone to certain health issues. However, it’s important to note that not all individuals will experience these problems, and responsible breeding practices can help minimize the risk of inherited conditions. Some potential health issues associated with Burmilla cats may include:

  • Respiratory Issues: Burmese cats, one of the parent breeds, are known to be more susceptible to respiratory problems such as brachycephalic airway syndrome.

  • Dental Issues: Some cats, regardless of breed, may be prone to dental problems. Regular dental care, such as brushing their teeth or providing dental treats, can help maintain oral health.

  • Obesity: Like many other breeds, Burmilla cats can be prone to obesity if they are not fed a balanced diet and do not get enough exercise. Maintaining a healthy weight through proper diet and regular play can help prevent obesity-related issues.


Burmilla Care

The Burmilla’s short, smooth coat is simple to groom with weekly brushing or combing to remove dead hairs. A bath is rarely necessary. Brush or comb a longhaired Burmilla two or three times a week. Brush the teeth to prevent periodontal disease. Daily dental hygiene is best, but weekly brushing is better than nothing.

Trim the nails weekly. Wipe the corners of the eyes with a soft, damp cloth to remove any discharge. Use a separate area of the cloth for each eye so you don’t run the risk of spreading any infection. Check the ears weekly. If they look dirty, wipe them out with a cotton ball or soft damp cloth moistened with a 50-50 mixture of cider vinegar and warm water. Avoid using cotton swabs, which can damage the interior of the ear.

Keep the litter box spotlessly clean. Cats are very particular about bathroom hygiene. It’s a good idea to keep a Burmilla as an indoor-only cat to protect him from diseases spread by other cats, attacks by dogs or coyotes, and the other dangers that face cats who go outdoors, such as being hit by a car. Burmillas who go outdoors also run the risk of being stolen by someone who would like to have such a beautiful cat without paying for it.

Burmilla Coat Color And Grooming

Besides their sweet personalities, Burmillas stand out for their coats, which have a silver-white background color that is tipped or shaded with a contrasting color. In Burmillas with a tipped pattern, the color tips about 1/8 of the entire hair length and is evenly distributed, giving the coat a sparkling appearance.

Burmillas with tipped coats generally look lighter than Burmillas with shaded coats. In the shaded pattern, about 1/3 of the hair shaft is shaded, which is why the shaded cats look darker. Colors in both tipped and shaded patterns include black, brown, lilac, blue, chocolate, cream, red and tortoiseshell.

The silky coat can be shorthaired or longhaired. Longhairs may have ear tufts and a fully plumed tail. In all other respects, they look much like the European Burmese with a gently rounded head that tapers to a short, blunt wedge; medium-size to large ears with slightly rounded tips that tilt forward a bit; large eyes that can be any shade of green; and a medium-size body with slender legs, neat oval paws, and a tail that tapers to a rounded tip.

Children And Other Pets

The gentle and playful Burmilla is well suited to life with families with children and cat-friendly dogs. He can learn tricks, enjoys interactive toys, and loves the attention he receives from children who treat him politely and with respect. Supervise young children and show them how to pet the cat nicely. Instead of holding or carrying the cat, have them sit on the floor and pet him. Always introduce any pets, even other cats, slowly and in a controlled setting.

Life Span
10 to 15 years
6.5 to 13 pounds
Country Of Origin
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