Federation Internationale Feline World Cat Federation
1998 saw Paul McSorley begin the development of the Minskin in Boston, Massachusetts. Just as the Siamese has color restricted to the points (or extremities), Paul McSorley envisioned a cat with short legs and fur restricted to the points. To accomplish his goal, he crossed a Munchkin with short legs and fur with a Sphynx for the hairless characteristic where fur can occur on the extremities. He also used Devon Rex and Burmese in his breeding program. The first cat that met his goal was born in July, 2000. And by early 2005 about 50 cats meeting the Minskin vision existed. The Minskin is currently in TICA's program that monitors the development of new breeds.
The Minskin is a noticeably small and stocky cat with a sweet and alert expression. They have a rounded head, large round eyes and a semi-cobby body. Minskins are easy to identify by their short, soft fur-points and their short-stature. The Minskin coat has an overall look and feel of a soft cashmere garment and they are quite warm to the touch. The short stature of the Minskin accentuates their otter-like appeal; this is the result of a natural spontaneous autosomal dominant mutation. Their size and stature do not hamper mobility or quality of life. They are swift and agile, sweettempered and respond well to being handled.
Shape: rounded, wider than long, with no flat planes.
Ears: large, open and alert, with slightly rounded tips. Broad at the base with bell cups or jugs. Placement is as much on the side of the head as the top.
Eyes: large and round. Set wide, more than an eye’s width apart. Expression is open and alert.
Chin: firm and strong, aligning with the tip of the nose.
Muzzle: short and broad. Prominent whisker pads.
Nose: slight curvature at the end, neither straight nor humped.
Profile: visible stop.
Neck: well-developed and flexible. Not bulky.
Torso: semi-cobby, may appear longer due to short legs. The back is straight but allowance may be made for a slight rise from shoulders to tail as the back legs are, or may appear to be, slightly longer than the front legs. The chest is broad, strong and wellmuscled.
Boning: sturdy, not fine boned, may appear and feel heavier with muscling.
Musculature: hard, lean and muscular.
Legs: short. The front upper and lower forelegs should be equal in length. The back thigh and lower legs approximately equal in length and may be slightly longer than front legs.
Feet: rounded, compact and strong. All four feet point directly straight forward and not inward or outward.
Tail: slightly longer than the body, tapering gently from the base to a slightly blunted tip.
Length: short. Fur-points (short, closely packed soft fur, covering the entire mask, ears, legs, tail and scrotum). Fur-points are defined by the density of the fur on the outer extremities in comparison to the rest of the body which is visibly more sparsely coated. The fur extending from the legs may rise up onto the shoulders, the hips and the buttocks. The temples (forehead in front of ears) are noticeably sparse with bareness extending from the top of the eyes to the frontal base of the ear. Furnishings, if any, are sparse. Ear muffs may or may not be present. Whiskers may be present, sparse, broken or absent. The neck, chest and abdomen may appear hairless but are covered in a very thin, fine down. Both adults and kittens may have some wrinkling to the skin but this is more apparent in kittens.
Texture: rippled and soft like a fine cashmere garment.
Dexterous and playful.
Weight — 3.5 kg.
The outgoing Minskin is an affectionate cat that loves the company of people, especially children and it gets along well with other cats and dogs. They are intelligent determined cats that can do everything their larger counterparts can do but sometimes use their intelligence to puzzle out a new route to the same end. These friendly little cats are very playful and will entertain you with their athletic antics as they speed around your house like a radio-controlled miniature race car.
The Minskin’s minimal coat is nonshedding and easy to groom. Regular bathing with mild shampoo is necessary to keep the skin supple and healthy.
Lifespan — 10-14 years.
Good with children, good with household cats and dogs, low shedding, high sociability with strangers.
The breed is easy going and may be kept and bred without any problems.
We gather that they are generally healthy cats.
In the early days there were reports that some Munchkin breeding lines may have genetic issues related to their pseudo-achondroplasia (short-limb dwarfism with normal size head).
These reports have never been substantiated and the TICA geneticist has confirmed that the Munchkin is a genetically sound and healthy breed.
As the Munchkin was used to develop the Minskin, it may be worth talking to the breeder about these conditions: lordosis (exaggerated inward curvature of the spine) and pectus excavatum (a deformity that causes a funnel chest or sunken chest).
It is also important to note the above conditions are certainly not restricted to the so-called dwarf breeds.
As the Minskin is closely related to the Sphynx it may also be prone to the genetic heart condition Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM).
We urge all potential owners to discuss these potential health problems with the breeder.
Naturally, you need to deworm your cat regularly and vaccinate against feline infectious diseases.