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PREOSSIA is the international breed club for the Old-Style Siamese.
PREOSSIA was the first club in the world to coin the term Old-Style Siamese as a formal name for the old type of Siamese that originated in Thailand.
(NOTE: The Old-style Siamese Club in the United Kingdom adopted the name Old-Style Siamese in 2000, a year after PREOSSIA, because their members had a great deal in common with ours and wanted to show solidarity with PREOSSIA. The Cat Fanciers' Federation recognized their version of the Old-Style Siamese in 2008 after two members of PREOSSIA brought the idea to them.)
So, yes, PREOSSIA originated the concept of the Old-Style Siamese and named it the Old-Style Siamese. We were the first.
From 1999 to 2013, we were the champions of the Old-Style Siamese on the international stage. Our over-riding goal was to ensure the survival of our breed, which by the 1990s was facing either extinction by numbers and extinction by adulteration. (The latter is what we call the mixing of non-Siamese cats with true Old-Style Siamese, coupled with selective breeding for a look that is not correct or authentic.)
We sought breed recognition from the world's third largest cat association, TICA, because, of the top three, it is the most truly international and is currently growing. We also chose TICA because of its genetics based registry and understanding of natural breeds. Through TICA, our European and American members could support the breed together, and we could use the remaining Western Old-Style Siamese as well as cats imported from Thailand to create a healthy gene pool and a promising future.
In 2010, TICA granted championship status to the Thai breed. In TICA, our Old-Style Siamese are called Thais. This is because the name Thai was adopted by many European registries circa 1990 for the old type of Siamese. (See our sections on the history of our breed.) However, the TICA breed standard clearly states that the Thai is the same as the Old-Style Siamese, and many of our cats transferred directly from the Siamese breed to the Thai breed in TICA when the Thai became a registration option. The remainder were direct imports from Thailand, which had to qualify as Thais in TICA via their import documents.
Many people refer to the Thai as the Thai Siamese. That makes perfect sense. The Old-Style Siamese is the Siamese that came from Thailand, which is the Thai Siamese.
By 2013, the Thai breed in TICA had passed through probationary championship to earn permanent championship status. At this time, it seemed as though all efforts on behalf of the breed could and should be done through TICA channels. All of our active members were also members of TICA and of the Thai Breed Section in TICA. The members had elected a breed committee in TICA.
As time has passed, however, it is apparent that there is a need, more than ever, for an Old-Style Siamese breed club independent of all the cat associations. This is a lesson that has been learned in other breeds. The cat registries and the cat show system are vital for the survival of breeds. But when it comes to breed education on a larger scale, only an independent breed club can maintain a membership that works together on behalf of the breed. More than ever, we need to provide clear and reliable information about our breed if it is to survive in this rapidly changing world.
That's the purpose of this website. Here we tell the history of the old type of Siamese. We explain how the breed is defined in TICA, what the breeding rules are (and why), and we soon will display many photos of authentic Thais -- genuine Old-Style Siamese. The photos will illustrate the correct features of the breed.
Last but not least, we will provide links to locations where breeders of authentic Thais may be found. But, given the foibles of human nature, we also will provide a guide to evaluating breeders. Breeding authentic cats of the breed in an ethical manner, preserving the health of the cats, requires a great deal of knowledge and experience. Some breeders take the time to work with others in the community and to learn before they leap. Others plunge right in and may make mistakes. We hope the guidance on this website will help the public determine which breeders they want to work with. And we hope that fostering a better understanding of our breed will ensure its preservation for posterity.
We are currently updating the educational and other resources to be available on this website. For now, we highly recommend the following book. More than any other, it will help you understand the origin of the Thai Siamese in Thailand, as well as its subsequent development in Western countries. The book is published in Thailand. It can take some effort to obtain copies, but it's well worth that effort.
Siamese Cats: Legends and Reality, by Martin ClutterbuckThis 2004 book, a considerably expanded version of an earlier book by Mr. Clutterbuck, contains the first complete English translation of the 14th century Siamese Cat Poems. It also contains the first published, factual, detailed account of the evolution of Siamese cats in their ancient homeland and their place in ancient and modern Thai culture. Western myths about the cats are debunked, and the reader hears, for the first time, the Thai side of the story. A charming, enlightening, unique book by a university-trained expert in Asian cultures.
For more about the Old-Style Siamese and PREOSSIA:
TICA's Thai Breeders List (scroll down to the Thai breed)
Note that this is TICA's list, which is open to all TICA members. The breeders on the TICA website do not have to be PREOSSIA members and some may not breed authentic Old-Style Siamese. It is a place to start, but be careful in evaluating breeders.
Click the links below to find out if PREOSSIA is the right club for you and about PREOSSIA services and activities:
The International Cat Association's Thai Breed Standard
This is the breed standard used internationally (both North America and Europe) when showing Old-Style Siamese at cat shows. To understand exactly what this means, keep watching this site. We will be doing a 2020 update and explanation of the international history and politics of the Old-Style Siamese (aka Thai) breed.
Click the links below to learn more about Old-Style Siamese, their genetic traits, behavior, and care:Siamese Eye Colors from Whitish Blue to Navy Blue (see photos showing the full spectrum of Siamese blue eyes)
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