Bombay Cat Breed Guide

Sleek | Strong | Curious. If the idea of having a miniature black leopard guarding the house sounds absolutely purrfect to you, the Bombay cat may just be the answer to all your prayers. And with a loving and people-obsessed purrsonality, one thing we know for sure is that these black cats won’t be cursing you with bad luck any time soon. So let’s deep dive into everything you need to know about the Bombay cat so that you can be the best pet pawrent possible to one of these cuties. 

Bombay cat lying down


Average Lifespan: 12 - 18 years 

Average Weight: 3.5 - 6.5kg 

Coat Length: Short

Colouring: Black

Shedding: Low


The name Bombay cat doesn’t point towards this kitty’s place of origin but rather the wild black leopards that they were bred to look like which frequently roam the streets of Bombay (modern-day Mumbai). This mesmerizing floof was developed by American breeder Nikki Horner who wanted to produce a cat with the mystique of a black leopard by breeding together sable Burmese cats and black American shorthairs. 

Her early attempts were unsuccessful but with continued effort she was able to produce a stunning short-haired black cat with golden eyes, eventually gaining recognition by TICA in 1979. Within the UK, the Bombay cat is recognised under the Asian breed, either referred to as a Bombay or Burmese Self. 


Like a black panther, they have an elegant and strong appearance. These kitties have a rounded face with two large golden eyes which add to their mystical look. British versions of the Bombay can also have green eyes which differentiate them from their American cousins. The most distinguishable characteristic of this sleek kitty-cat is its tightly packed jet-black fur but what really sets them apart from other black cats is that their whole body is black, down to their nose and paw pads.

Bombay cat close up


Although not from the warm climate of India, Bombay cats love the warmth, scoping out their homes like ninjas looking for the coziest nooks or patches of sunlight to bask in. They’re curious little critters and confident so you won’t see these floofs hiding for cover when strangers come knocking, rather you’ll be racing them to the door. 

Bombay cats are highly sociable and people-focused with some describing them as velcro cats or shadows so they suit furmilies who work from home or those with other fur babies that can keep their Bombay brother or sister company during the day. Like the leopards that their looks are based on they love to jump and climb so creating a cat-friendly home with suitable scratching posts and climbing frames will help your Bombay let out their inner panther and save your leather couch in the process.


Bombay cats are considered rare and are uncommon to see prowling the neighbourhood with resident moggies. However, there are eleven Bombay cat breeders who are part of the Bombay and Asian Cat Breed Club that are governed by the GCCF’s code of ethics and can help you out if you’re in the market for one of these cuties. 


Bombay cats are known to be healthy floofs, often living long into their nine lives. To keep them happy and purring they should be fed a cat food with high levels of quality animal and packed with the 41 essential nutrients and minerals they need to thrive. As they are active cats they also need to be fed the correct amount of cat food for their activity levels and regularly monitored using a body condition score to keep them in purrfect shape. 


Scrumbles wet and dry cat food

Bombay cats and their pawrents love our gut friendly cat food and here’s why:

  1. Kind on Tummies - We use gut-loving prebiotics or probiotics to optimise the health of kitty-cat tums and promote pretty poops.
  2. Packed with Delicious Fish and Meat - We load up to 77% fish or meat in all of our dry and wet cat food recipes to provide all of the essential amino acids Bombay cats need to stay fit and strong. 
  3. Avoid Nasties - We avoid common allergens and nasties in our recipes like added salt, sugar, fillers and artificial additives which are known to upset tums.
  4. Built-in Feeding Calculators - We build feeding calculators into all of our cat food pages so that you know exactly how much to feed your Bombay cat adjusting for their size and activity levels. 
  5. Vet-Approved, Complete Recipes - All of our wet and dry cat food recipes are complete and nutritionally balanced so that you can feed your Bombay our recipes daily with the confidence that they’re getting all they need from their dinner bowl.  
  6. Top-rated Taste: Even the fussiest of Bombay cats love our drool-worthy recipes, just take a look at the thousands of five-star reviews from satisfied British kitties! 
  7. Climate Conscious - With our eco-friendly packaging, B-Corp certification and a commitment to promoting both the health of our pets and our planet, Scrumbles is the ideal choice for climate-conscious furmilies. 

Whilst you're here, why not read:

  1. Russian Blue Cat

  2. Snowshoe Cat

  3. Cornish Rex Cat

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