The Munchkin cat breed is a medium sized cat with extremely short legs and a long spine. Munchkin cat's movements are described as being like that of a ferret, so it has not the feline grace of longer legged cats. Munchkin cats have a thick body with a well-rounded chest. The breed may have long or short hair. Both varieties have plush, all-weather coats with a silky appearance. The longhair Munchkin has a plumed tail. Munchkin cats can be in any colour or coat pattern and their walnut shaped eyes and can also be any colour.
Seen as the feline equivalent of the Dachshund, this breed has caused controversy in the cat world. The Munchkin cat mutation was discovered in America in 1983 where it was named after the 'little people' in The Wizard of Oz. Shortlegged cats, like the Munchkin cat, were reported in England in the 1930s and in Russia in the 1950s but these breeds were not perpetuated. This breed is not recognised in the UK by the main UK cat fancy association.
Country Of Origin
Munchkin cats are sweet and outgoing. Their curiosity and playfulness continue well into adulthood. The Munchkin cat breed is sociable and enjoys company. They can be taught to play fetch and to obey voice commands. While Munchkin cats can leap on to counter tops, many prefer to intelligently find an easier way up. They can also run fast, despite their short legs.
The short leggedness of this breed is a deformity that is linked to bone and spinal problems, so it has not been welcomed by all cat associations. Dog breeds with similar conformation are known to have problems with arthritis and it is feared that some will occur in the Munchkin cat breed. As with all cats, Munchkins need vaccinations, parasite control and annual veterinary health checks.
Every cat is unique and each has their own particular likes, dislikes, and needs when it comes to food. However, cats are carnivores and every cat must obtain 41 different and specific nutrients from their food. The proportion of these nutrients will vary depending on age, lifestyle and overall health, so it's not surprising that a growing, energetic kitten needs a different balance of nutrients in her diet than a less active senior cat. Other considerations to bear in mind are feeding the right quantity of food to maintain 'ideal body condition' in accordance with feeding guidelines and catering to individual preference regarding wet or dry food recipes.
Munchkin cats may not have the flexibility to groom themselves as well as other cats do, so will need some assistance. This is especially true for those with those sporting long coats.