Often called the "miniature black panther", the Bombay cat is made recognisable by its jet black coat and yellow eyes. Slender and of average size, it's an elegant and reserved cat.
Bombay cats are generally good house cats, being quite home-loving and sociable. They get on well with children who understand their playful temperament and agility.
The black Bombay cat is originally from the United States where Nikki Horner, a Burmese and American shorthair breeder based in Kentucky, created her dream breed. Her aim was to create a breed with the physicality of a black panther.
Her first attempt was in the 50's, where she crossed an American shorthair with a sand coloured Burmese. The kittens were black as she had hoped but they still had the morphology of an American shorthaired cat being too dense to ressemble a panther.
Horner then tried new crossings, still between the Burmese and the American Shorthair. Between 1966 and 1972, around a hundred kittens from 27 different litters were produced and she finally created the race of her dreams.
The Bombay was recognised by the main breed associations in America 1976 and 1979. In Europe, the breed still hasn't been recognised by the two biggest cat breed associations, remaining quite rare in both American and Europe today.
With the exception of its coat and its colour, the Bombay cat ressembles in every way the american Burmese.
It's an average sized cat with a "cobby" body, strong but compact. Its neck is relatively short but well developed. Its shoulders and hips are curved.
A Bombay cat or kitten's tail is neither too long or too short and finishes with a curl. Their legs are proportionate to the length of their body and their feet are round.
The Bombay breed has an average sized head that is round, without any flat surfaces. The muzzle is short and round, just like its chin.
A Bombay cat's ears usually have a round tip that incline forwards and are generally well spaced on their head. Their eyes are usually big, round and are golden and copper in colour.
A Bombay cat or kitten's coat is its biggest asset, having a particularly deep and brilliant colour.
The hair of this black cat is short and fine and is the same colour all over its body. Contrary to the Burmese, which can also be black, the Bombay's fur doesn't go sepia or ginger in the sun.
Bombay cats or kittens are the perfect compromise between a dog and a cat. They are very playful and obedient.
Some even love playing fetch, just like a dog. They are also renown for being very easy to take for walks on a lead.
As well as being playful, black Bombay cats are also very sociable. They love getting to know people and other animals so they can play with or cuddle them. They are also very affectionate and enjoy relaxing with their owner just as much as they do playing with them.
Thanks to their American Shorthair ancestors, the Bombay is very robust and doesn't suffer from many health problems. The breed hasn't developed any genetic illnesses so doesn't need any particular care to stay healthy.
The black Bombay's particularly short hair makes it a very easy cat to maintain. Brushing it every once in a while will suffice.