The Bombay cat is an attractive shorthair hybrid breed with a shiny black coat and copper eyes. The Bombay was developed in the US by Burmese breeders trying to improve their cats’ color and body type. Against the rules of the day, they out-crossed their Burmese to black American Shorthairs and produced some attractive cats. In 1953, a Kentucky breeder named Nikki Horner set out to produce a mini panther. The black leopard of India inspired the choice of the name “Bombay”. She began breeding champion Burmese with champion black American Shorthairs and through a careful breeding and outcrossing program developed the Bombay cat breed. Because the black gene is dominant the Bombays bred true. The Bombay finally achieved the Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) championship status in 1976. Outcrossings are still being made to the Burmese in order to maintain the body type.
he Bombay is a medium-sized elegant and supple black cat resembling a diminutive version of the black leopard that inspired the choice of its name. With the exception of its black and shiny coat and copper eyes, the Bombay resembles the Burmese in all of its characteristics. The body is muscular and medium-sized with the male being larger than the dainty female. The legs and tail are of medium length and the tail is fairly straight. The head is rounded with no flat planes and the eyes are round and set far apart with a color ranging from gold to deep copper. The coat is fine, short, close-lying and satiny to the touch with a gleaming patent leather shine that responds well to polishing with a silk cloth or leather chamois.
What They Are Like to Live With
Bombays are happy, friendly cats who love to play and interact with humans and other pets. Many can be trained to go outside on a leash, and like to play fetch with a small ball, catnip toy or crumpled up piece of paper.
Although they tend to be busy cats, they also enjoy cuddling up and are intelligent and affectionate. They like strangers and children.
Things You Should Know
Bombays are social cats and like a lot of attention.
They are sometimes mistaken for Burmese.
Bombays are active cats and need plenty of stimulation.
Bombay cats are healthy and easy to maintain. A once per week light combing with a fine-toothed steel comb will suffice. Regular shining with a leather chamois or silk cloth will impart a beautiful sheen to the black coat. Bombays do not like loud noises as they have very acute hearing.