With regal airs, the Balinese cat is a stunning breed with deep blue eyes and a beautifully plumed tail. Athletic, energetic and highly intelligent, the Balinese loves to play but also forms strong attachments with family members and is a loyal companion who will happily follow you from room to room.
The Balinese breed has a muscular but lithe body with a wedge shaped head tapering down from unusually large ears all the way to the tip of the nose which gives the Balinese regal airs. The legs are long and slim with the hind legs slightly longer than the front. Small and dainty feet seem specifically designed to accentuate the royal heritage. A long plumed tail enhances the delicate look as it tapers off to a fine point.
The coat of the Balinese is the only characteristic separating the breed from that of the Siamese as it is a medium length coat that is fine and silky to the touch. The hair is longest on their beautifully plumed tail. The Balinese also shares the same point colours with the Siamese and is available in seal, chocolate, lilac, and blue. Balinese cats always have almond shaped, deep blue eyes and sometimes appear cross-eyed due to an inherited condition.
The breed was not actively developed until the 1940s and 1950s but it has been around since the early twentieth century. The Cat Fanciers Federation finally entered the Balinese as its own breed in 1961, followed a few years later by the Cat Fanciers Association in 1970.
Personality wise, when you have a Balinese you essentially have a long haired version of the Siamese cat. That is to say they become extremely attached to their people, and will follow them around all day if necessary. If you’re sitting down, you can expect to have a Balinese in your lap. In bed they will be under the covers and resting their head on the pillow next to yours. If you have a career which keeps you out of the house for long periods, then it’s probably best to get two Balinese so they can keep each other company.
A naturally curious breed, they are frequently getting into cupboards so you may need to kitty-proof your home. They also tend to get under foot as they follow you from room to room so they are probably not a wise choice for the elderly or people who get around with canes or walkers.
As an athletic and energetic cat the Balinese cat loves extended play times. You will need to keep them entertained with plenty of toys and places for them to climb or they will find something to do that you may not appreciate; such as reorganise the toilet paper or tissue boxes. Blessed with a high level of intelligence the Balinese will also enjoy a walk on a leash and will even learn the odd trick or two
Did you Know?
The Balinese are actually a long haired variety of the Siamese. However, the origin of the species is shrouded in mystery as it is not known whether the long hair is because of a natural mutation or a pairing between a Siamese and a long haired breed such as Turkish Angora or Persian.
The Balinese does not originate from Bali, but it does get its name from the graceful exotic dancers of Bali due to its lithe frame and delicate legs and feet.
Caring for Your Balinese Cat
The Balinese is an extremely healthy breed with few known health issues.
It does sheds frequently though, so weekly grooming is essential to keep its magnificent coat in prime condition. You will rarely, if ever, be required to bath your Balinese but they are pedantic about having a spotless litter box.
If you have a Balinese cat in your life, please share your experiences below.