The Munchkin: Character, education, health, price - The right cat for you
Also called "basset cat" or "sausage cat", the Munchkin is the cat with the shortest legs in the world ! It is probably the smallness of its legs that gave it its name, inspired by the people of the Munchkins, small characters present in the film The Wizard of Oz by Fleming, released in 1939.
One would even have the impression that these cats remain kittens all their life!
Weighing between 2 and 4 kg and only 21 to 24 cm high, this is a very sociable and particularly active cat, but in addition to not supporting loneliness, it needs a minimum of affection and care. In the following, you will find everything you need to know about this cute and unusual cat, as well as everything you need to make this adorable fur ball happy and fulfilled.
The Munchkin in video
Who is the ideal cat for?
With his active and playful temperament as well as his overload of energy, the Munchkin is an eternal kitten who is very attached to his master, but particularly appreciates those who are active like him. He is very sociable and cannot stand being alone for long, which means that he accepts the company of adults as well as children, as well as that of pets other than his congeners (such as dogs), it is one of cat breeds the most sociable. In addition, with its sometimes mid-length coat, it requires regular maintenance.
Despite its needs to let off steam, it is a cat that prefers the comfort, warmth and security of the interior of a house, with its owners. So even when he comes out, it's not for very long. The Munchkin is therefore the ideal cat for families living both in apartments and in a house with a garden!
Origin and History of the Munchkin
The history of the Munchkin began in 1983 in the United States, when a breeder from Louisiana by the name of Sandra Hochenedel accidentally discovered an alley cat with particularly short legs. She adopted this beautiful ball of hair and named it Blackberry.
Fascinated by the appearance of Blackberry, Sandra decided to develop the Munchkin breed. This is how the first specimen of Munchkin will be officially presented in 1991 in New York, at a cat show. It was not until 1993 that the first Munchkin landed in Europe ...
Note also that cats with similar characteristics were discovered in England in the 1930s, as well as in Russia in the 1950s, but no one was interested in develop the breed.
Physical characteristics of the Munchkin
With a triangular shaped head with rounded contours, the Munchkin has broad cheeks (especially in males), a flat forehead, a thin muzzle with a moderately long nose, as well as a firm chin. Her large, walnut-shaped eyes have a color that does not depend on the color of the dress. Its ears are straight, triangular in shape and slightly wide.
Its legs, which make all its peculiarity, are short, with an average frame and a well-developed musculature, all supported by feet of average size, compact and round. Despite its small legs, the Munchkin has a medium-length body with medium bones and musculature, broad shoulders and a round chest. Small in thickness, its tail, which it wears very high and straight when it moves, has a rounded end. Which still makes it one of the smallest cats in the world among all domestic cat breeds.
Finally, the Munchkin's coat can be short-haired or half-long haired. Either way, this cat's coat has a silky texture and a medium undercoat. Note that with the exception of amber, all coat colors are permitted.
Behavior of the Munchkin
Very active, lively and playful, the Munchkin is a very sociable cat who is particularly attached to his master. He enjoys life with humans, is very kind and patient with children, and accepts the company of other pets, in this case dogs. Suddenly, this is a cat who does not appreciate solitude.
Relatively simple to educate, you can teach him orders and even go and get objects for example. All this therefore makes the Munchkin a perfect cat for family life!
Health and care of the Munchkin
In general, the Munchkin is a robust healthy cat. So far, no genetic, congenital or common disease specific to its breed has been observed, unlike other purebred cats. However, its short-legged morphology can make it prone to arthritis in some cases. This is why it is very important to make sure that the parents of your hairball are well at the time of adoption.
Basically, your Munchkin is vulnerable to diseases common to all cats, regardless of breed.
So, from the moment of adoption, you must make sure that your cat receives all the care necessary to stay in good shape. This involves, among other things, vaccinating it (against diseases such as leucosis, coryza, typhus and even rabies), deworming it, protecting it or treating it against external parasites (fleas, ticks, lice, etc.) ,… In addition, being a particularly active cat, the Munchkin can easily be the victim of an accident.
The costs of taking care of your animal in the event of illness or accident can amount to several thousand euros, not to mention the fact that they often unload unexpectedly. Thus, the best way to avoid unpleasant surprises while guaranteeing the best possible health care for your Munchkin is to subscribe to a mutual health insurance for him.
Does the Munchkin need specific food?
Like all cats, whether purebred or alley, the Munchkin simply needs a diet that is perfectly suited to their carnivorous diet. It will therefore be a question for you to feed your animal with croquettes containing as much meat or fish as possible, fats and minerals in very precise proportions, and all without cereals or food supplements.
Only premium kibble can guarantee you such a high level of requirement. You will find it in a pet store or in a specialized store. Of course, when you feed your Munchkin with dry food, make sure that he has enough water available at all times.
What budget to have a Munchkin?
As you know, the price of a cat strongly depends on its breed, gender, quality of pedigree, color and type of coat, as well as many other characteristics. To become the happy master of a Munchkin, plan:
- Between 400 and 900 euros for a female
- Between 400 and 1000 euros for a male.
Also note that its annual maintenance will cost you no less than 800 euros, or even 1000 euros.
Accessories adapted to the Munchkin
Although very lively, active and playful, the Munchkin is a cat that much prefers to stay indoors rather than outdoors. So, for it to be as fulfilling as possible, you must provide it with a set of accessories such as a cat tree (with scratching posts, hiding places, observation posts, rests, etc.), toys, baskets for cat, in short, anything that can ensure optimal comfort in your home.
Of course, do not forget the basic and essential accessories such as those intended for his food (bowls or kibble dispenser, water fountain,…), his grooming, as well as a toilet. Note that all of these items will need to be purchased taking into account the small size of the Munchkin.
Goodies for Munchkin Lovers
Munchkin Chat Strass - Ladies Watch - Bracelet ...
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Munchkin Cat - PopSockets Cat Lover Gift ...
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Munchkin Cat - Lover Gift Chat Sweat à ...
Photos of Munchkin
Where to adopt a Munchkin?
To adopt a Munchkin, you have 4 options: either go to a breeder, or to a cattery, or to a shelter, or finally to a private individual.
Getting closer to a recognized breeder is the most reliable solution to obtain a 100% authentic and perfectly healthy purebred Munchkin. In cattery and in a shelter, the quality of the animal is not always guaranteed.
Finally, if you choose to adopt your cat from a private home, it is strongly recommended that you get closer to someone you know personally rather than a stranger, in order to avoid any animal trafficking.