Show News - 1977

The First Specialist Burmese Show for our Club in Australia.

Burmese Benny took it all so calmly.

Tse Keow Tuhan Bentala did not look impressed. His owner had flown him all the way to Sydney from Shailer Park, Queensland, in a silly, dark box, only to place him in a cage next to 250 other Burmese cats.

But it turned out to be worthwhile because Benny (that’s his pet name) was voted outright winner at the annual Specialist Cat Show in Glebe, Sydney.

It was easy to see why – Grand Champion Benny is sleek, chocolate brown, strongly muscled with large, expressive eyes. He has more class than a court full of royalty.

Like his feline colleagues, Benny looked detached – which is more than you could say for the owners. Many were attending their most exciting day of the year.

The Burmese, unlike many other pedigrees, are affectionate and placid – not highly strung. They go out of their way to attract affection.

I was near a woman holding Istana Red Baron, a delightful red Burmese, who, had taken first prize in the male intermediate section. Istana eased his head toward me and lovingly caressed my cheek with his, so I stroked him behind the ears and, in ecstasy, he rolled his head in a series of peculiar movements.

To the novice exhibitor and visitors, the stimulation, and the touch of melodrama surrounding the cat show is entrancing.

It takes a real cat lover to own a Burmese. They spend a lot of time discussing subjects like how to improve breeding and listening to talks by veterinarians and judges.

At the show exhibitors decorated cages with curtains and sponge rubber "carpets." And each cat was carefully groomed, first with a damp cloth, then a dry one.

The history of the Burmese in interesting and also long and detailed. They are the only natural breed of brown cats though there are now blue (a predominant colour), champagne, lilac, red, torti, cream and blue/cream Burmese cats. Like the Siamese, the Burmese were bred in Burma, and long considered sacred.

Mrs M. Oliver, an international judge at the show, says a professional can see at a glance if a Burmese is a true representative of its breed.

reproduced from THE AUSTRALIAN WOMANS WEEKLY, May 18, 1977, page 58 STORY: Kim Robbins

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