The Munchkin kittens are an exceptional cat breed that has been very rare in the world so far. The animals look a little different than the previously known breeds: They have extremely short legs, which makes them look like a dachshund.
Many cat friends, therefore, consider the Munchkin to be an agonizing breed, but so far no strong health restrictions due to the short legs have been demonstrated.
Munchkins are intelligent and calm cats. They are very affectionate and loyal. Her name comes from the little people in the children’s book “The Wizard of Oz”.
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Where Do They Come From?
The first signs of the breed are in the United States in the 40s, specifically in New York. Previously, very short-legged cats had been spotted elsewhere, but the necessary attention was not given to these animals to enhance this characteristic. Apparently, it was a farmer who saw a kitten grow with very short legs, but, not properly documented, that characteristic disappeared with him.
Therefore, it would not be until years later, after World War II, when these animals began to be reported as a possible breed of their own. Specifically, it would also be in the United States and in the 80s, when a music teacher was left with a street cat that had abnormally short legs. This cat was also pregnant, and half of the kittens with short legs similar to those of her mother were born in the litter.
From then on and from these specimens, the breeding of what is now known as the munchkin kittens began, enhancing the characteristic short legs that are so popular today in homes around the world.
The most curious thing about this breed is that it is still in the process of development, and has not been officially recognized as such by all feline associations.
The TICA recognized the munchkin kittens in 1994 and included it in its development program, but FIFE has not recognized this unique feline breed until now.
Although at first, there were not too many breeders or lovers of cats interested in this breed because of the controversy generated around their health, doubts soon dissipated and munchkin kittens began to be valued and desired by people around the world.
So much so, that it is now easy to find copies of the breed of munchkin kittens anywhere, either as a companion animal or as part of a breeding program to perpetuate the breed and to continue developing and improving its characteristics.
Characteristics of the Munchkin Kittens
If it were not for the most distinctive feature of the breed, the short length of its legs, the physical features of munchkin kittens would be very similar to those of most feline breeds.
In fact, one of its qualities is that it has a multitude of variations in terms of its facial features, type of coat and hue since none of these requirements was essential for a copy to be considered of the munchkin race. Hence, the only concern of the breeders had to do with the length of the legs.
It is difficult, therefore, to define the physical characteristics of the munchkin cat breed. It is not strange to find specimens of this breed with features similar to the Persian cat or the Siamese cat, and with a coat that does not respond to any of them.
In general, the fur in this breed is usually soft, dense and spongy, and can occur in various lengths, from short to long. As for coloring, there is no restriction, and within the breed, all colors and patterns are accepted.
The legs of munchkin kittens are naturally modified by genetics, and unique among all feline races. And it is that they are short or very short legs, especially the front ones, which give it a very concrete appearance even though they have no negative effect on their health.
Because of the difference in length between the front and rear legs, it is common to find copies of the so-called munchkin dwarf cats supported like kangaroos, only on the back legs and with the front legs collected.
For the rest, the dimensions of the breed of munchkin cats are the normal and average of other breeds, perhaps significantly smaller. The most common is to find cats of weights between 3 and 5 kilos, similar weights to many other races.
The Behavior of Munchkin Kittens
It might seem that the characteristic short legs of the munchkin cat involve a quiet animal that spends most of the day sleeping. Nothing could be further from the truth. This kitten is very active and playful, who is always running and jumping, and shows very remarkable agility.
Perhaps it could even be said that it is faster and lighter than other races precisely because of this characteristic. So do not doubt that you will see your cat climb, climb, jump and slide through the most remote corners, just like a cat with the longest legs.
In addition, it is a very affectionate race and accustomed to the presence of people from their origins. That is why it is one of the most advisable cat breeds as a pet for families of all kinds.
They get along great with children and even with other pets as long as the baby munchkin kitten socializes correctly. And he is very intelligent, awake and curious, so he spends much of his time exploring and learning new things.
It is not a cat that enjoys solitude and tranquility precisely because of its energy. It requires a high level of physical and mental activity, so your family should have time available to spend with it and to perform all kinds of challenges on a daily basis. In addition to giving all the love they deserve.
Main Diseases of Munchkin Kittens
The most important thing about the health of the munchkin cat is to make it clear that its short legs are no problem for them. And that does not involve any genetic or inherited disease, or back problems or joints or mobility.
On the other hand, these are strong and healthy animals that generally show greater resistance to common feline diseases than other breeds. Maybe because of the variety of genes found in their DNA.
Of course, some healthy habits and guidelines will have to be maintained so that the cat is always in good condition, especially when it comes to feeding. And it is that these cats tend to get fat easily, and obesity is a serious health problem for cats in general and for the munchkin cat in particular.
Basic Care of the Munchkin Kittens
Munchkin are cats that do not require special care or different from any other breed. Within normal and usual care, we must take into account its type of coat to keep it in good condition through baths and brushing. Although trying to brush it in any case between once and twice every week, and bathe it every six or eight weeks with special products for cats.
On the other hand, it is essential to go to the veterinarian a couple of times a year to review it completely, and also to keep your vaccinations and deworming up to date.
To also prevent them from getting fat and developing other health problems for that cause, you must always offer quality food and in the right amount for their weight.
Being such an active and energetic animal, it will require a higher dose of food, but always be careful not to overdo it, because these cats are very greedy.
Following these guidelines, and providing exercise and various activities, and proper guidance, the munchkin cat will undoubtedly be a great pet for the whole family.
Remember also the importance of the socialization of the animal from the first moment, so that as an adult it has a good relationship with both human beings, as with cats and other animals.