Minuet cats are a new breed. The breed is human-made and still in the early stages of development. The cats are a cross between short-legged Munchkin cats and members of the Persian family. They’re sometimes called Napoleon cats.
These cats are enthralling creatures that are adorable enough to win their way into a wide variety of hearts and homes.
Characteristics of a Minuet Cat
Body size. The Minuet cat size seems smaller than most cat breeds due to their short legs. But they should actually have substantial, medium-sized bodies. Size may vary based on sex. Make sure to talk to your veterinarian if you’re concerned that your cat is too far underweight or overweight.
Body shape. Minuet cats have bodies that are a lot like the cat version of a dachshund. They have very short legs that are caused by a genetic mutation. Some kittens are born with long legs, but they don’t qualify for the breed standard.
The short-legged cats have low-slung bodies that are sturdy and well-boned. They also have thick musculature that’s the most pronounced on their front legs.
Other Minuet characteristics include rounded heads and small ears. Their ears have rounded tips and are set far apart.
Unlike Persians, these cats should have noticeable muzzles with short noses. They shouldn’t have the typical squashed face that’s a standard in the Persian breed.
Their tails are either proportional to their body or a bit long.
Their long-legged siblings have similar features but lack their overall shortened appearance.
Lifespan. Since the Minuet is a relatively new breed, the exact lifespan isn’t well established and could depend on your pet’s exact ancestry. In general, you should be prepared to spend about a decade with your pet, especially if you adopt them when they’re still a kitten.
Coat. The Minuet cat breed can come in both longhaired and shorthaired varieties. Your cats’ coat length will depend on the genes they inherit from their parents. Both long and short coats are dense and full. They should feel plush when you pet them. The longhaired versions aren’t quite as fluffy as a standard Persian, but the coat should still be substantial.
The cats can also have a slight undercoat. This is the second type of coat that’s dense and close to the body.
Minuets come in all the colors and patterns that are found in their parent breeds. This is a wide variety. Colors include:
There are also a number of different patterns that these cats could have, such as tabby and bicolored.
Eyes. Minuet cats have large, round eyes. They should be wide open but not protrude from the skull. The coloration depends on the coat color. In general, the breed standard prefers deep, brilliant colors.
Personality. The Minuet cat personality is incredibly charming and affectionate. They’re people-oriented cats that love taking an interest in their owners’ activities.
The breed combines personality traits from both of its parent lines. Minuets have the gentleness of a Persian and the spirited energy of a Munchkin.
Like many cat breeds, Minuets are very inquisitive. They’re often motivated to take action on their own and will freely explore the world around them.
Caring for a Minuet Cat
Grooming. A Minuet’s grooming requirements depend on whether it has a long or short coat. Longhaired Minuets need to be brushed more frequently or for longer periods than the shorthaired versions.
For the best results, a short daily brushing is best no matter which kind you have. This will prevent mats and tangles. As a bonus, Minuets love being brushed. You both may find the activity relaxing.
In general, you should always check your cat's ears for signs of debris or infection. Brush their teeth at least a few times a week with a cat-safe toothpaste to complete their grooming routine.
Feeding. Minuets don’t have breed-specific dietary requirements. You should consult your veterinarian for the most accurate feeding advice for your particular pet. In general, you need to make sure that you’re tailoring your cat’s diet to their stage of life and activity level. Cats at different ages have unique nutritional needs. Cats that are less active don’t need as much food as energetic ones.
Make sure that your pet has access to clean, fresh water at all times. Some cats may struggle to get enough to drink. To get your cat to drink more water, you can add ice cubes to their water bowl or use a flowing fountain.
Exercise and mental stimulation. You need to make sure that your Minuet has plenty of toys for both their physical and mental stimulation. They can be good at self-motivating, so you could try leaving simple toys lying around for them to find.
They also love engaging with their humans. They’ll benefit greatly from just a few minutes of interactive play every day.
You should also make sure that your cat has access to a scratching post or somewhere to sharpen their claws. This gives them an outlet for their natural scratching instincts.
Veterinary visits, medications, and immunizations. Your veterinarian is the best person to determine the vaccinations that your pet needs, but all cats should get a core set.
This includes vaccinations for:
- Feline distemper
- Feline herpes virus
You should also discuss non-core vaccinations with your veterinarian to see if they’re right for your pet. For cats, these can include vaccinations for problems like feline leukemia:
All cats are susceptible to flea infestations. Oral and skin-based applications are available from your veterinarian or other distributors. You should follow the directions for these very specifically. Use them at any time of year that your cat needs them.
Heartworms are less common in cats than in dogs. Unfortunately, there isn’t a treatment for heartworms in cats. This means that your best bet is prevention. Have your veterinarian check your cat for signs of heartworms on an annual basis. Also have your cat take a preventative that your veterinarian recommends.
Health Problems To Watch for a Minuet Cat
In general, Minuet cat health issues are uncommon. They're a very healthy breed of cat. There aren’t any conditions that are specifically associated with just this breed. One health concern to keep in mind comes from their short legs. The gene that causes this condition also alters the cartilage found in joints throughout your cat’s body.
People have noted that Munchkin cats with the same mutation have an increased rate of osteoarthritis — a painful condition that affects your cat’s joints. The condition can make movement difficult. Your veterinarian can look for and treat this condition on a case-by-case basis.
Also, polycystic kidney disease (PKD) is a very common health problem in Persians. This is something that you should be aware of if your Minuet comes from a recent cross to a Persian. There’s a genetic test to check for this condition. You shouldn’t breed cats that carry the trait.
PKD can eventually lead to kidney failure. Your best bet is to bring your cat to a veterinarian at least once a year for a checkup.
Special Considerations for a Minuet Cat
Minuet cats are generally very agreeable animals. This means that they don’t usually have problems with children and cat-friendly dogs. But each animal is unique, so it’s important to pay attention to how your cat behaves in social situations. All cats can benefit from early socialization with an array of people and pets.
Also, note that these cats are not hypoallergenic. They do shed, particularly when the weather transitions from cold to warm.
One thing to keep in mind if you want to breed your Minuet is that their short legs aren’t as dominant of a trait as they are in dogs. This means that the genetic calculations are slightly more complicated for these cats than they are in short-legged dog breeds.
For example, even when you cross two short-legged cats there’s still a 50 percent chance that each individual kitten will be born with long legs. These cats aren’t able to pass on the short-legged trait to any of their offspring.
History of Minuet Cats
The history of the Minuet cat starts in the mid-1990s when a basset hound breeder named Joe Smith first heard about the Munchkin breed. He’d enjoyed working with short-legged dog breeds and was interested in doing similar work with cats.
In his mind, the problem with Munchkins is that the long-legged versions look just like any other common cat. There aren’t any defining features about Munchkins that clearly point them out as a purebred line.
So he created the first litter of Minuets by breeding a Munchkin female with Persian ancestry to an exotic shorthaired male. The founding litter was born in 1997. These cats were bred to Munchkins and members of the Persian group. The Persian group also includes Himalayans and exotic shorthairs.
It took years and many persistent advocates to get the breed accepted by the cat community. This finally happened in 2016 when the breed gained full championship status in The International Cat Association (TICA). This means that Minuets can now compete in TICA championship shows.
One of the main reasons that TICA came to accept this breed is the widespread enthusiasm that people have for these animals. Once people started hearing about Minuets, breeders cropped up all across America. But keep in mind that they’re still a rare breed and may be difficult to find.