You Must See This
On a regular basis people inform me a cat is a cat. While I admit, floating around the world, I rarely encounter a cat in somebodies house that is memorable. I don't mean to cast shade on your average European shorthair, but, Im not terribly impressed. So I see why most people think " a cat is just. a cat". I will now add they have not met one of my cats. In the film featured below, you will see my main cat, Bruce Lee II. It will prove conclusively these cats are not like your average cat. Honestly, I have stopped trying to describe them in words. You just have to experience them. They are so weird and loving and peculiar. And all in their own special way.
This little precious bit of footage came about accidentally. I came onto my husband vacuuming Bruce. We live in a big old rambling country house and a lot goes on here that I don't see. I was zipping around and I discovered Toly vacuuming Bruce. Bruce was twisting around indicating which part of his person he desired vacuuming. I was like, what is going on. I came to discover that Bruce presents himself to be vacuumed when Toly is vacuuming. Who knew. The whole scene was beyond absurd and yet totally predictable. Toly grew up in the Soviet Union which is to say no pets. So, the Toly/Burmese cat interaction often leads to moments of amusement. However, this one takes the cake. Enjoy. Also be aware, if you get a cat from me, you might find yourself with a cat presenting his or herself for a vacuum treatment.
As I said, I started out breeding American Burmese, found them increasingly unhealthy, and created a scientific breeding program to improve the health of my cats. When it comes to breeding, you cannot get good from breeding bad to bad. So, I brought in new. Specifically cats from Thailand. The cats from Thailand came carrying all kinds of genes and I got a lot more than Burmese kittens in the litters.
As a scientist, I do not like common names. I used to be primarily a botanist and common names were a disaster. Yerba Buena is mint in Venezuela. Tasty. Yerba Buena in Colombia is castor bean. Deadly. I prefer scientific names because they do not change, from country to country, or in the case of the cat word, from registry to registry. Different breeds call the same cat a million different common names. Frankly, I have a hard time keeping it straight. A cat is this in one registry and that in other. So, for the sake of keeping things tidy, I will prefer to file my cats by their scientific designation. Sorry guys, but we are going to have to get scientific and learn some new terms.
The scientific designation of a Burmese cat is a cat that inherits two Burmese genes from its parents. In the science world, the shorthand for "inherited two copies of the Burmese gene" is cbcb.
The scientific designation of a Siamese cat is a cat that inherits two Siamese genes from its parents. In the science world, the shorthand for "inherited two copies of the Siamese gene" is cscs.
The scientific designation of a Tonkinese cat is a cat that inherits one Burmese gene and one Siamese gene from its parents. In the science world, the shorthand for "inherited one Siamese gene and one Burmese gene" is cbcs.
Below you will find examples of my cats that fit into these scientific descriptions.
Why I do this.
Believe it or not, I am to one of those, I "heart" my Burmese cat bumper sticker kind of guys. In fact, I always made fun of people who had such bumper stickers. And then I got this Burmese cat named Bruce Lee. It was a super weird time in my life. I had left a country I had lived in for decades, come back to an America I did not recognize, I telecommuted to a magazine job. My only human time was my nightly trip to the gym. At this odd time, Bruce Lee came into my life. I suddenly had this incredible sidekick. We went to Starbucks together, he rode on my bike in his Bruce Basket, he slept under the covers every night, loved watching tv, and more. He was great company. Sadly his life was cut short. I was wrecked, in a way I never wanted to be wrecked. I never wanted to be that guy that could not see straight because his pet died. But I became that guy. I replaced saintly Bruce Lee I with Bruce Lee II. And I am happy to report Bruce Lee II as fab as Bruce Lee I.
When I found out that the Bruce breed of cat, Burmese cats, were teetering on the edge of extinction, due to inbreeding and poor breeding practices, I decided to do something about it. I decided to figure out a way to make healthy Burmese cats. That involved a lot of research. I am a medical researcher by nature and education, so it was in my skill set. I came up with a new breeding plan. To that end, I have imported dozens of Burmese cats from Thailand. I experimented with all kinds of matings. I feel I now make a healthier cat.
When I started doing this, the reason was selfish. I wanted to make sure I could always have a Bruce Lee in my life. If Burmese cats went extinct, no more Bruce Lee's for Doug. But as time has passed, my reason has become less selfish. CFA and TICA registered American and European Burmese cats are dying really young. That is a fact. I get kitten requests from people replacing American and European Burmese cats that died at 2, 8, and 14, every single week. What is also true is they live miserable lives before they die. MISERABLE.
Below you will see pictures of Bruce Lee II. He came from one of the best Burmese catteries in America, The Laki Cattery. A cattery the CFA and TICA handed endless ribbons. He comes from "award" winning lines. He would have won at cat shows if I had taken him to them. He is fully CFA and TICA approved.
And here is the reality. Bruce Lee II is 13 years old terminally ill. He can't breath. Literally, his nose does not work. Because he breathes through his mouth, all of his teeth rotted, had to be pulled out. He has chronic infections because he is now a mouth breather. I converted the guest bathroom into a Bruce spa. Complete with heating pad and humidifier. Once a day I have to dry him with a towel because he sits there so long he gets water logged. Once a day he leaves his spa, eats a can of Gerbers' chicken baby food, goes to the toilet, and then returns to his spa. That is his life. And that is not right. He is a relatively young cat. He should not be sick all of the time. He should not have to spend the last part of his life unable to breath. Why can't he breath? Because breeders decided to turn Burmese cats into short faced cats with noses that do not work. Because short faces win shows. Yeah for them, sad for the cats. There is life after the show and you will see what that looks like In the pictures below.
I do this because I want to make healthy Burmese cats can a live a normal life. I want to create a Burmese cat with the classic Burmese cat personality that walks around on a healthy body. I want a healthy Burmese cat for me, for people who love Burmese cats, and now, mostly, for the cats themselves. My first cats lived to be 27 and 29 and never went to the vet. That is what I am working to re-create.
My objective is to make a healthy Burmese cat. Some people may like me for it. Some people may hate me for it. I do not care. If you are going to hate on me for trying to make healthy cats, I would take a look in the mirror. I just want to do what I can to prevent cats, and cat owners, from going through what I am going through with Bruce Lee II. Have a look.
Indian Spring Cats
Burmese Cats CBCB
Siamese Cats CSCS
Rip Off Alert
Dear customers and Potential customers,
It has come to my attention that there are scammers out there ripping off kitten buyers. I have had multiple emails from people who have been scammed out of a lot of money for kittens that never arrived. It is pretty astonishing how quickly predators move in. As you may or may not know, the Corona Pandemic has caused a shortage of cats and dogs, both from breeders and shelters. We have been getting an astonishing number of requests from people stuck at home who suddenly decide they need a pet. We are unable to help them because they want a pet RIGHT NOW and we have perpetual wait list. But they are super possessed to get a pet, RIGHT NOW, and this is leaving them vulnerable to scammers who sell them a pet, from a distance, that never arrives.
In fact, several kitten buyers who have been ripped off have contacted me.... and thrown me shade when they discover we don't let people come and see the kittens or cats. Which is fine, because, as I have already said, we have a wait list and always have a wait list and I don't need their business.
In the event you don't know our policy, we don't welcome visitors. In the first instance, we have kittens here and until they are 8 weeks old, they are vulnerable to infection. When we used to let people come, they would drag in cat viruses, kittens would get sick, and we would have to tend to them. In the second instance, there are two of us that run this show, and, if one of us goes down with Corona, we would be in a world of hurt. So nobody is coming here other than to pick up a kitten. And that is a special dance of social distancing.
BUT.... please beware there are a bunch of rip off artists operating, requiring full payment for a kitten or dog, who never deliver the promised kitten or dog. We ask for a $200 deposit to get on our waiting list. And the better portion of the payment is due when you pick up the kitten. We use the deposit to weed out the window shoppers. People who don't put a deposit down are unlikely to actually show up to pick up a kitten. But, payment in full before you receive the kitten or dog is a super bad idea.
I can only speak for Burmese breeders, but, the breeders I see on Pets4U and FBRL are breeders that have been around for awhile. I don't know them all personally, but, I have never heard of the people on those two lists ripping anybody off. You might use those two as a guide. I believe both throw people off their list if there is any reported fraud.
Its so crazy that there are people so low that they would pull this stunt, but, corruption is super popular in America today. There are even people who try to scam cat breeders. Once a month I get a deposit check from somebody for $2000..... not the requested $200. Then they send an email saying, oh, sorry, I sent my paycheck, would you mind sending the extra $1800 back to me via Western Union. In your dreams douche bag. Like I would fall for that one. And the checks always look like they were printed on some kind of cheap printer. I tried to call the FBI to report this ongoing scam, and, you will be pleased to know you can no longer report a crime on the phone to the FBI. You have to send it via the post office. So, if you get scammed, don't think law enforcement is going to help.
Exercise extreme caution at the moment.
As I said, I began as a Burmese breeder and still consider myself a Burmese breeder. But, when you import cats from Thailand, you get all kinds of surprises in your litters. Like I had mentioned before, that includes Siamese kittens, Tonkinese kittens, and more. More now includes a newly identified type of Thai cat. They have no doubt existed in Thailand for thousands of years, but, they were only recently "discovered". What is discovered? I imported four cats from Thailand and had the four cats genetically tested at the UC Davis cat genetics lab. Their genetic test came back and said they were black cats. However, they were not black cats. When I queried Davis about the fact they were not black cats, they just never got back to me. I sent the DNA samples off to a lab in England, and got a more professional response. The English lab said, "though they test as black cats, clearly they are not black cats. Our tests just cannot detect what they are. They are something undetectable by our current tests. In time we have discovered what they are. They posses their own unique mutation gene called cm. I call the cats that carry this gene Bangkoks because that is where the first four cats were found. Other people call them Mocha but I prefer Bangkoks because, well, its where they were first found. Below you will see pictures of some of my Bangkoks. Mine usually inherit one Burmese gene and one Bangkok gene,(cbcm) but, I have some that inherit two Bangkok genes(cmcm). They look enough like Burmese that you can see why the new gene went unnoticed for so long. And they do look a lot like Burmese. One key feature of this mutation is they all have stunning eyes.
Breeders Dr.Douglas Schar and Dr. Anatoly Vinokur
Burmese... and a Few Siamese and Tonkinese Cats
About the Cats
When I started Indian Spring Cattery, it was my intention to breed Burmese cats. In my opinion, Burmese cats make the best pets in the entire world. But, I soon discovered the American Burmese breed was in trouble. The breed was created with two cats, Wong Mau and Tai Mau, imported from Asia in the 1930's. Virtually no cats had been imported from Thailand since and not surprising, the breed had become inbred. A rather sobering study by Dr.Leslie Lyons, renown cat researcher, revealed that American Burmese are the most inbred cat breed in the world. The prospects for the breed did not look good.
I decided to do something about it. My thought was this. The American Burmese breed was CREATED with a Siamese and a Tonkinese cat, imported from Thailand, 100 years ago. The only sensible thing to do was to import more cats from Thailand and add some genetic diversity to the American Burmese breed. And that is what I did. I have imported a spectrum of cats from Thailand and use them in my Burmese breeding program. And, as a result of importing all these cats, not only do I have healthy Burmese kittens, I also have Tonkinese(Dong Tang) and Siamese (Wichienmaat) in the litters. Half of my breeding stock came from Thailand, and, as a result, I get more colors than the usual Burmese breeder. Over time, I suspect my cats will develop a more uniform look and color range. But, for now, the imported Thai cats, and their incredible genetic diversity, results in truly rainbow litters. So though I am a Burmese breeder, I now I have BURMESE, SIAMESE, and TONKINESE kittens!
Though I think my cats are beautiful, they do not look like the American Burmese you see at cat shows. They have long noses and super short hair and all kinds of eye colors. But, I do not aim to produce cats that will win at shows. I aim to produce the healthy pets that will bring joy and happiness to their owners for years and years. I breed for health and personality and…….. for health and personality. And honestly, trying to bring those two attributes out in my cats, keeps me plenty busy.
I feel that what sets these cats apart from the other breeds is their fantastic dog-like personality. All of the American Burmese cats in my breeding program, and those imported from Thailand, have that irresistible personality we associate with the Burmese breed. They are pushy, demanding, constant companions. If you are looking for a healthy cat, brimming with personality, you have come to the right cattery. The same is true with the Siamese and Tonkinese that pop up in my litters.
If you are looking for a healthy Burmese cat(or Siamese or Tonkinese), I have those. My goal is to maintain the characteristic dog like personality of these breeds and correct the health problems that have become associated with these breeds. Its taken some work, but, I now have kittens that have the American Burmese personality with the health and longevity one should expect.
My name is Dr. Schar. In addition to being the owner of Indian Spring Cats, I am specialist in natural medicine. I believe in working with nature and never against it. In my medical practice, I study foods and medicines that make people healthy. When I I expanded my studies to Burmese cats, I realized the starting point was improving the genetic health of the breed. They were inbred and inherited a catalogue of genetic life ending diseases. Doomed from birth. Im here to tell you, no supplement or diet can fix bad genetics. I am actively researching and instituting ways to improve the health of the breed, and that includes importing cats from Thailand and a whole lot of genetic testing, planned matings, and more.
I am kind of a mad scientist type. But, I want to emphasize scientist. I am not a show cat breeder. I am a scientist who is using science to make healthy cats with great personalities. If you want to know more about me, and what I do when Im not breeding cats, you can visit my website.
Our cats follow you around, demand attention, want to be with you at all times, wait at the door for you to return home from work. Its the best combination... the dog minus the walk!
An Example of What You Can Expect!
There is this fabulous website, www.messybeast.com, created and managed by Sarah Hartwell. This woman writes the best articles about cats. I use her site as a resource constantly. I don't know her but I would like to know her. The site covers all manner of matters cat topics. Below is the link to her article on Bangkok cats. So, if you want to know more not written by me, click the button below. Once you get to the site, plan on getting lost in all the information!
The next kittens ready to go home are from Coconut Booty, Permatitten, and Lavinia. The father is King George. King George is a Burmocha. The Bangkok Mocha gene he carries changes the eye and coat color in the kittens. As you can see, their color is all over the place.