Munchkin (cat)

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The Munchkin is a relatively new breed of cat characterized by its very short legs, which is caused by a naturally occurring geneticmutation. Named after the short-statured characters from Wizard of Oz, the breed was developed in the 1980s in the United States. Much controversy erupted over the breed when it was recognized by The International Cat Association in 1995 with critics voicing concern over potential health and mobility issues.

Characteristics

Munchkin kitten, 7 months old

The Munchkin is generally described as a sweet-natured, playful, people-oriented, outgoing and intelligent cat which responds well to being handled.[12] The shortness of their legs does not seem to interfere with their running and leaping abilities.[13]

The Munchkin has similar characteristics to normal domestic cats, due to their frequent use as outcrosses. It is a small to medium sized cat with a moderate body type and medium-plush coat. Male Munchkins typically weigh between 6 to 9 pounds (3–4 kg) and is usually larger than a female Munchkin, which typically weigh between 4 to 8 pounds. The hind legs can be slightly longer than the front which creates a slight rise from the shoulder to the rump. The legs of the Munchkin may be slightly bowed, although excessive bowing is a disqualification in the show ring. Cow-hocked legs are also penalized.[1][3]

The Munchkin comes in all coat colors and patterns. It also comes in a long-haired variety which is shown in a separate Munchkin Longhair category. The short-haired variety has a medium-plush coat while the long-haired has a semi-long silky coat.[1] TICA rules for outcrossing allows the use of any domestic cat that does not already belong to a recognized breed. Similarity to other breeds is grounds for disqualification. Non-standard Munchkins are not allowed to be shown[12]

Recognized derived breeds

The Munchkin has been crossed with the curly-coated LaPerm to create the Skookum, the hairless Sphynx to create the Minskin and Bambino, with the extremely curly-coatedSelkirk Rex to produce the Lambkin, the Persian breed group which includes Himilayans and Exotic Shorthair, to create the Napoleon and crossed with the Bengal to create the Genetta.Image

http://pictures-of-cats.org/munchkin-cat.html

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