What is a Himalayan Cat

What is a Himalayan Cat? [the exotic Persian Siamese crossbreed]

The Himalayan Cat originated by cross-breeding a Siamese and a Persian cat. They have many unique characteristics such as point colorations, beautiful blue eyes, and calm personalities. The Himalayan cat does not need much space and makes a great family pet!

 Keep reading to learn more about this amazing cat! 

Persian Siamese crossbreed

Himalayan Siamese Cat

The long-haired Himalayan Cat is a more placid cat that will have entertaining bursts of extreme energy. 

One moment your Himalayan will be napping next to you in the sun, and then in the next moment, they are exploding with energy and life. 

Himalayan Siamese Cat

They have become one of the more popular pet cats since they were first officially recognized as a breed in the 1950s.

Himalayan cats are such good pets because they will always love being around you. 

Whether stretching out to cuddle with you on the couch, jumping up into your lap, or even sleeping on your bed. While they are relatively calm, they have plenty of energy to play. 

One of the best aspects of the Himalayan cat is that they easily adapt to change and like people so much. Usually, they are extremely friendly with just about anyone. 

History of the Himalayan Cat

For a long time, the drive to create a Persian cat with the beautiful and unique “pointed patterning” of a Siamese cat had been highly coveted by many cat breeders. 

Finally, the Himalayan Cat was created in the 1930s in the United States. This new breed has the colored points of the Siamese but resembles the body style of the Persian. 

History of the Himalayan Cat

The Himalayan Cat is the best of both worlds. 

This long-standing dream became a reality due to cat breeder Virginia Cobb, efforts from Marguerita Gorforth, and Dr. Clyde Keeler. 

The breed gained even more popularity when British breeders visited the US and began to produce breeding programs in England. 

The Himalayan Cat is a strictly human-engineered cat breed. It took over ten years for the British breeder Brian Sterling-Webb to develop and earn a breed registration status in the 1950s. 

As a result, in parts of the world, especially England, the Himalayan is known as the “Colourpoint Longhair” instead of being called the Himalayan Cat.

When Was the Himalayan Cat Recognized?

When the mid-1950s came around, the Himalayan would gain official recognition from the American Cat Fanciers Association. 

By the 1960s, every registry in the USA began accepting recognition of the Himalayan Cat in the show ring. 

Some registries will place the Himalayan Cat in the same class as the Persians, and some put it in its own category. It is generally referred to as the “pointed Persian.” 

Himalayan Cat Names

Other names for the Himalayan Cat include:

  • Persian-Himalayan
  • Himalayan-Persian
  • Himalayan
  • Himmy
  • Colourpoint Longhair
Himalayan Cat Names

Himalayan Cat Health Issues

According to many medical researchers, the Himalayan breed is prone to health conditions. Therefore, it is a good idea to have a good veterinarian that you work with to maintain and prevent as many of these common problems as possible. 

Himalayan Cat Health Issues

Himalayan Cats are at a higher risk of developing:

  • Difficulty breathing and generalized breathing issues, due in part to being a Brachycephalic breed. 
  • Dental Malocclusions
  • Eye problems including the “Cherry eye.” and Progressive Retinal Atrophy.
  • Polycystic Kidney Disease
  • Nervous System Disorders- generally Feline Hyperesthesia Syndrome. 
  • Ringworm

How to Find Himalayan Kittens?

Himalayan kittens are beyond adorable so they are not always easily found! They are considered a “designer” cat breed and generally will not be found in shelters. 

There is always a possibility to may be able to rescue one, but they are scarce in shelters and rescues. Your best option is to find some responsible breeders and be added to their waitlist. 

You will want to use a reputable breeder to ensure their pedigreed cats don’t have any genetic defects or abnormalities. 

A good breeder will care for their animals and ensure their welfare and health. 

Do Himalayan Cats Make Good Family Pets?

The Himalayan Cat has an amicable and usually laid-back demeanor. However, they have bursts of crazy and playful energy while still being calm and well-mannered cats. 

They are an excellent option for families with older and younger children. 

When treated with respect, care, and affection, Himalayans will be great household pets. The determining factor of how animals will act is how they are treated. 

Himalayan Cat Characteristics

There are quite a few physical characteristics that set the Himalayan Cat apart from others.

Himalayan Cat Characteristics

Some of these unique features include:

Himalayan Facial Features

  • Himalayan Persians have flat faces 
  • Small ears
  • Full cheeks
  • Blue eye color
  • Darker face 
  • Short noses
  • Thick necks

Himalayan body type

Himalayan Colors

The Himalayan cat color points are: 

  • Blue points
  • Lynx points 
  • Chocolate points
  • Lilac points.

The Himalayan is a medium or medium-large-sized cat with a distinctively compact body. They usually have a relatively large, rounded head and a short, thick neck. 

The Cat will generally have a “kind” expression due to the large deep blue eyes that are set far apart. They have short, cute noses with small ears

Their coat is elegant and low, but it does require consistent grooming due to their thick undercoat, which can become prone to matting.

A Himalayan cat has specific color points on the ears, legs, feet, tail, and face. There is a noticeable contrast between the color points and the cream color of their body. 

Himalayan Cat Personality

The Himalayan Cat is well-known and loved for its happy attitude. They are affectionate and usually very quiet cats. 

They prefer to cuddle with you and watch a long movie rather than run around the house chasing objects or climbing your walls. They are brilliant cats. 

They are a little vocal but not as much as a typical Siamese would be. So no worries. While they love attention, they are not demanding and aggressive for it as some breeds can be. 

Like most other cat breeds, they love to play with toys and interact with you.

Similar Breeds to the Himalayan

Himalayan cats are technically a “sub-breed” of both the Siamese and the Persian Cat. There are a few breeds that look similar to a Himalayan.

Similar looking cats

Himalayan Cat Associations

If you are looking to register litters, a cat, find a breeder or even a show schedule, you can find all of this information on these sites.

Himalayan Cat Grooming and Care Requirements

Himalayan cats are beautiful, but with all of that beauty comes a few daily grooming habits that will help with reducing shedding and maintaining a healthy coat for your kitty. 

The Himalayan Cat has a highly thick undercoat. Getting familiar with grooming techniques will help keep your Cat looking and feeling great.

Are Himalayan Cats Hypoallergenic?

Himalayan cats are considered NOT hypoallergenic due to their long, thick coats. They are considered one of the worst choices if you have severe cat allergies. 

Do Himalayans shed a lot?

YES, they are one of the heaviest shedding breeds of cats. However, this can be maintained if you groom on a daily basis. 

Daily grooming will help remove excess hair to keep you, your furniture, and your home clean and de-haired. You can also purchase a lint roller to get any shed hair off your furniture. 

Feeding Your Himalayan Cat

Cats are carnivores by nature, so choosing a diet for your Cat that is meat based is essential. You can either feed a commercial or homemade food. Ensuring you provide high-quality, filler, and additive-free food is critical. The best recommendation I can give you, along with the easiest, is to speak with your vet about what their advice would be for your specific Cat. 

You can also add treats to your kitties’ diet. Great treat ideas include pieces of meat, tuna, occasionally deli meats, and turkey. 


You can add supplements like fish oils or vegetables to optimize your Cat’s nutrition. 

Before adding anything to your cat’s diet, please speak with a vet or animal nutritionist as they have been trained on what will be the most significant nutritional value for your Cat. 

Setting up a consistent feeding schedule will also benefit your Cat. 

Famous Himalayan Cats

The loveable movie Homeward Bound

In the 1993 adventure, tear-jerking film Homeward Bound, they use a Himalayan Cat named “Sassy.” Sassy’s character doesn’t like change and chances and loves her people. 

The animals journey far and wide to find their way back home to their children’s arms facing perilous adventures! Sassy’s character was one of the first Himalayan cats in the media.

Fun fact: Martha Stewart was a lover of the Himalayan cat breed. She owned two Himalayan cats named Vivaldi and Verdi. 

Before their passing, she even held birthday parties for them with multi-tiered cakes! They lived to be 19!

Colonel Meow

Colonel Meow was an infamous American-based Himalayan-Persian crossbreed. He held the 2014 Gusiness Book Of World Record for the longest hair ever on a cat. 

His hair was an astonishing nine inches long. He also became an internet celebrity after his owners began posting pictures online of his “angry,” disapproving facial looks. 

Colonel Meow was known as “The Grumpy Cat” and even became a meme sensation. 

Related Himalayan Cat Questions

Do Himalayan Cats require a particular litter due to their fur length?

While you don’t necessarily need special litter or litter boxes, getting a litter box and clumping litter that won’t stick to their fur is a great idea. 

Himalayans are well-known for getting litter stuck in their long hair. Daily grooming and monthly bathing can help with any litter-built-up-related issues. 

There are also many products, some of which you can purchase on Amazon or at your local pet store, that are made for daily use, such as dry or waterless shampoos and conditioners. 

How much do Himalayan Cats cost?

Himalayan cats can be very expensive, mainly depending on whether they are “show cats” or not. Some show cat-worthy Himmys can cost upwards of $2500-3000 (or more.) 

They are not a cat for the fainthearted if money is greatly concerned. 

Rarely can you find a Himalayan cat for $200-500 if you rescue one from a shelter or purchase one that someone is trying to find a new home for one. 

What is the Himalayan Cat’s average lifespan?

The “typical” lifespan of a Himalayan cat is 8-11 years old. Still, with exceptional care, they can live up to 19+ years, like Martha Stewart’s cats. 

The lifespan will depend on many factors such as overall health, activity level, vet care, genetically inherited diseases or illnesses, and so forth. 

Is a Himalayan Cat a good choice for a first cat?

There is no simple answer to this question, as some first-time cat owners can be better owners than people who have owned numerous cats through the years. 

The most important thing to consider is how willing are you to educate yourself about these cats and are you willing to put in the time and effort needed to keep them healthy and happy.

Most first-time cat owners will probably prefer a cat that has fewer daily requirements, but if your heart is set on a Himalayan, then ensure you are well-educated.

Himalayan Cats Can Make Great Pets

The Himalayan Cat is not only exotic but a great pet choice for just about any individual or family. 

If you are considering getting one, then do some additional legwork and contact a good breeder, and if you haven’t already, try to meet one in person! 

If you just want to see a Himalayan cat check out your local cat show as there will probably be one there. I wish you the best of luck in finding your next feline family member.

What is a Himalayan Cat

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