Minuet cat (Napoleon)
Federations: TICA

As often happens with new breeds of cats, the fame of Minuet is essentially limited to your country of origin, United States.
Long-haired minuet cat with white and gray fur – William Parker, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons


Characteristics "Minuet cat (Napoleon)"

Coexistence is important that you have with your new friend. Before considering the acquisition of a cat of the breed "Minuet cat (Napoleon)" you know certain factors. You must take into account their character, their need for exercise, their interaction with other pets, your care and if you have young children, their level of tolerance towards them.


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Activity level

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Friendliness to other pets

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Friendliness to children

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Grooming requirements

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Need for attention

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Affection towards its owners

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The Minuet cat or Napoleon It is a recent breed of cat originally from the United States.

One fine day in June 1995, Joseph Smith, an American breeder of Basset hounds, came across a photo of a Munchkin cat and an article in the Wall Street Journal about this cat, also known as basset cat. He was immediately drawn to the breed and its distinctive characteristics: short legs (as the Basset hound that he was raising), round and expressive eyes, and the absence of a stop in the nose. He noticed that individuals with long legs that did not conform to the breed standard looked like stray cats.

He decided then to create an original breed of cats, including both short-legged and long-legged individuals, being the length of the legs the only difference between both. The former would be the only ones strictly in accordance with the breed standard, but the latter would be kept for use in the breeding program.

Turned to her friend Deb Kenny, creator of persian cats, who decided to help him in his research and over time became his mentor as his project progressed.

The two enthusiasts were first interested in the gene for short legs. This is the dominant genre, call M of Munchkin, is a spontaneous genetic mutation. However, an individual who inherits an allele M of each of his parents, namely, What is it homozygous for this gene, it is not viable. Therefore, it is not a question of raising two short-legged individuals, since otherwise you will have a litter in which, average, half of the individuals are not viable. The only way to obtain viable short-legged cats is to breed a short-legged individual. (a Munchkin) with a long-legged individual. In this way, all kittens are viable: the 50% of them have short legs (are heterozygous in the gene M), and the 50% have normal-sized legs (are homozygous in the gene for long legs).

Joseph Smith y Deb Kenny they then set about selecting the breeds with which they would cross the Munchkin. His choices were:

The choice of these races was intended to give the Minuet a rounded overall appearance, a coat with all possible colors (colourpoint or not), and legs that can be both short and long. In addition, the exclusion of the possibility of crossing with the Peke Face Persian (flattened nose) allowed to avoid the respiratory problems inherent in this variety.

The breeding program started in 1996 when Joseph Smith bought a female Munchkin (whose grandmother was Persian) - Penny Squires of Penhaven Munchkin Cattery and Deb Kenny provided him with a male of Exotic shorthair cat. The following year they reproduced and gave birth to their first litter. The initiative was successful, since the kittens obtained had the desired characteristics.

They called the new breed Napoleon, in reference to the first French emperor, and more specifically its small size.

Breed recognition

A long-haired white and gray hair minuet cat – Parkerwh, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Minuet cat (Napoleon) inherited the controversies of the Munchkin and of the Persians.

In fact, since its creation in the United States in the decade of 1980, the Munchkin cat has been the subject of numerous disputes. In fact, both breeders and some official bodies considered that raising a breed with a physical malformation (short legs) it was unethical.

With regard to the Persian, was beginning to be criticized, especially since the then recent appearance of the varieties Himalayan cat and Exotic shorthair. Not to mention the Traditional Persian catPeke Face“, that had already appeared in the 30s… In effect, your flattened face and flattened nose cause breathing problems, while her bulging eyes are the source of tear duct problems. Remember that Joseph Smith was careful not to introduce any Traditional Persian catPeke Face” in your breeding program, precisely to prevent the Napoleon cat suffer those problems.

In these conditions, it is easy to understand that the recognition of Minuet cat (Napoleon) by the different feline organizations, whether international or national, it was not a bed of roses.

Joseph Smith and Deb Kenny they then received the help of important support, in the person of Gloria Stephens, judge of the International Cat Association (TICA) and Solveig Pflueger, president of the organization's genetics committee.

The former helped them draft the breed standard, while the latter defended it internally. His efforts paid off in 2011, when the TICA recognized the breed provisionally. However, in 2015, TICA decided to change the name to Minuet, much more consensual. In fact, the reference to the French emperor could be considered an insult, although it was indeed small. The following year, the breed obtained the full recognition of the TICA, so their representatives were able to compete in the feline exhibitions organized under the auspices of the organization.

It could be that the latter emulates for years to come, but at the moment neither the Fédération Internationale Féline (FIFé), not even World Cat Federation (WCF), have taken the step in turn. The benchmark feline organization in the United States, the Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA), does not recognize the Minuet, nor do national organizations in other countries: the Canadian Cat Association (CCA), the Governing Council of the Cat Fancy (GCCF) British, the Livre Officiel des Origines Félines (LOOF) French… I.e., much work remains to be done to get people to talk about Minuet cat around the world.

Popularity of "Minuet cat (Napoleon)"

As often happens with new breeds of cats, the fame of Minuet is essentially limited to your country of origin, United States. Even there, this knowledge is relative, although its recognition by The International Cat Association (TICA) in 2016 has obviously given you some visibility. Of course, things could be sped up if other organizations followed suit.

In the meantime, there are about twenty breeders of Minuet in United States, but the breed has also started to spread a bit in other countries.

There are a handful of breeders in Australia, South Africa and France.

Physical characteristics

Minuet cat (Napoleon)
Minuet cat (Napoleon)

The Minuet cat It is a breed of cat of the brevilinear type (o cobby) distinguished by its short legs, inherited from Munchkin cat. In all other respects, owes most of its physical characteristics to Persian, starting with its general anatomy all in the round (body, head, ears, eyes…).
Built around a wide rib cage, his body is muscular and has a strong bone structure, with firm shoulders and hips. The tail it is medium in size and bushy. If the cat has a long coat, the hair he has is similar to that of feathers.

The legs they are muscular and short; the front ones are even shorter than the rear ones. May have a slight curve on the inside. The feet They are round, and in long-haired dogs they have tufts of hair.

The head rests on a short, strong neck and is small and wide. The head contour is completely round from all angles. The cheeks they are round and full, without being rounded. The nose is wide and moderately short, without being crushed. The eyes they are big, well rounded and have a soft and soulful expression. They can be of any color, and some subjects have them vairones (one eye of each color). The ears they are small to medium in size, widely spaced and rounded at the tip.

The Minuet it comes in two varieties, with shorthair cats and longhair cats. The only difference is the length of the coat, and both have a very dense undercoat.

On the other hand, regardless of length, the coat is soft and silky. In addition, all the colors and patterns are accepted by the breed standard.

Last but not least, this breed is characterized by the almost absence of sexual dimorphism: males and females are nearly identical in size.

Also keep in mind that, although officially they are only considered Minuets short-legged individuals, litters also include an average of long-legged individuals. Apart from this difference, they are identical in everything to their brothers and sisters. Its existence is essential for the survival of the race, since reproduction between two short-legged individuals is not possible: a good fraction of individuals would simply not be viable. Therefore, a short-legged individual can only reproduce with a long-legged individual.

Breed standard

The breed standards are documents produced by official bodies that list the conditions that a dog must meet. Minuet cat to be fully recognized as belonging to the race:


The Minuet comes in 2 varieties:

  • the Minuet shorthair and short legs;
  • the Minuet longhair and short legs.

Apart from the length of its fur, there is nothing that distinguishes one from the other, neither in appearance nor in temperament.

On average, litters also contain kittens with half long legs, that can also be short or long hair. They are not recognized as Minuets for its long legs, but they are absolutely essential for breeding programs. In fact, two short-legged cats cannot breed together, since some of his kittens would be homozygous for the short leg gene and, Therefore, they would not be viable. In any case, apart from the length of its legs, these cats have exactly the same characteristics as those with short legs.

Character and skills

"Minuet cat (Napoleon)"

Gato Minuet (Napoleón)
Minuet cat (Napoleon)

The Minuet cat has inherited the calm and kindness of his ancestor the Persian cat, but also the energy and curiosity of his other ancestor the Munchkin cat.

It is a very affectionate cat, who knows how to make his family happy. This is especially true of children.: as soon as they are old enough to know how to treat an animal with delicacy and respect, they find in him an enthusiastic playmate, and vice versa. However, even if it's not aggressive at all, should never be left alone with a small child, and this is applicable to any race.

However, they are still one-person cats, which means they have their own person, usually the person who spends the most time caring for them. He is very possessive of her, follows her around and doesn't miss the opportunity to snuggle with her or sit on her lap.

However, the fact that your relationship with a person is special should not hide that you are very sociable and get along well with all members of the family. In fact, it is ideal for him to have a human presence by his side almost all the time, since he is very reluctant to be alone. Therefore, they are not suitable for people who are away from home most of the day, that it would be better if they chose an independent breed of cat.

On the other hand, his fondness for humans is not limited to those he knows. Sociable and confident, do not distrust strangers, and they even approach them to be caressed. You have to be careful so that this is not counterproductive on occasion.

His sociability also extends to his peers. Usually, they get along well with other cats in the same house, as long as, of course, don't be aggressive with them. This company can also help you better cope with the temporary absences of your masters..

They are also among the cat breeds that get along well with a dog., as long as, of course, they themselves be friends with cats. However, if the cat is not used to living with the canine species from an early age, introductions and coexistence should be done very gradually.

Regarding coexistence with birds and small rodents, being the Napoleon cat peaceful in nature, everything is generally fine, as long as everyone has their own space.

Last but not least, the Minuet he is very active and playful. Toys for cats that stimulate their intelligence are a good way to stimulate them both physically and mentally, as you tend to be a bit lazy and sleepy if you have nothing to do. In any case, its high level of activity does not make it incompatible with life in a flat, to which he is perfectly capable of adapting if his master does not live in a house with a garden.

It is also very curious, and does not hesitate to make up for its small size by standing on its hindquarters, how does one “Suricata“, to better observe in height. In addition, although their legs are short, is able to jump on a chair, a bed or a low cabinet. However, better get him a cat tree that fits his size, otherwise you will not be able to fully enjoy it.


"Minuet cat (Napoleon)"

Gato Minuet (Napoleón)
Minuet cat (Napoleon)

As the Minuet cat it is of recent creation, information is still missing in this regard, but seems to be in solid health.

It is able to adapt to all climates. However, in hot weather, it is important to ensure that you always have shade and fresh water at your disposal.

It is not surprising that the diseases to which he is predisposed are those of his ancestors. Persians and Munckin:

  • waterfalls, that cause degeneration of the lens of the eye and, long-term, the blindness. If the retina is not affected, the animal can be operated on to regain sight;
  • The renal polyquistosis, a hereditary genetic disease that also affects the Persian cat and to the Himalayan cat, and for which there is no treatment. Leads to cysts in the kidneys and leads to life-threatening kidney failure;
  • The feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, which can be inherited and causes the myocardium to become abnormally large. It is often asymptomatic, but puts the animal at risk of sudden death. However, can sometimes manifest as a racing heart rate, vomiting and apathy. There's no cure, but there are treatments that can improve the daily life of the cat;
  • The lordosis, a genetic deformation that causes excessive curvature of the spine. May cause pain with age;
  • The had, a skin condition caused by a fungus, it is highly contagious and can be transmitted to humans as well as other animals. The most important symptom is the appearance of scaly lesions with loss of hair on the skin or at the base of the claws., without the animal frantically scratching.

As in the case of any race, it is best to go to a breeder of Minuet conscientious to maximize the chances of adopting a healthy kitten. They must be able to provide a veterinary certificate of good health, details of vaccinations administered and the results of any genetic tests performed on the parents or kitten, to reduce the risk of inherited diseases.

In addition, like any other breed of cat, the Minuet you should not miss your review with the vet, that must be done at least once a year. In addition to allowing the professional to check its general condition and detect any problem as soon as possible, it may also be the occasion to carry out your vaccination booster.

Another rule of thumb to keep your cat healthy is to make sure his parasitic protection is up to date.. Therefore, it is up to the owner to renew it throughout the year, whenever necessary.


The Minuet Cat's coat requires different care depending on whether it is short-haired or long-haired.. In the first case, one brushing a week is enough. In the second case, of 4 - 5 brushed is not too much.

During your annual molt, in spring, it is better in both cases to do a small daily brushing, to help you get rid of dead hairs. This avoids too long sessions at less regular intervals, that I might be reluctant to.

In any case, it's a good idea to start the session with a wide-toothed comb and finish with a wide-bristle carding brush.

Queue can be a problem, since knots are easily formed – especially in long-haired dogs, knots are easily formed. It is useless to insist if they do not unravel: it is better to cut above the knot.

It is also important to take a few minutes once a week to clean your cat's eyes with a damp cloth.. This is also an opportunity to check that there are no injuries to the eyes., and they are not beginning to be covered by an opaque veil, a sign of cataracts, to which this breed is prone.

It is also very important to clean the ears with a damp cloth once a week to avoid infections (otitis, etc.).

You also need to brush your teeth regularly, using cat-friendly toothpaste each time. This will prevent tartar build-up., that not only can cause bad breath in cats, it can also be the cause of more or less serious diseases. If your cat is used to daily grooming sessions, it is best to use them to brush your teeth every day. In any case, it is better to avoid doing it less than once a week.

It is also important to check the length of your nails every month to prevent them from being too long.: they could not only hinder, but also break and potentially injure yourself. If you have access to the outside, natural wear and tear is usually enough to file them down. However, if you do not have access to the outside, it is usually necessary to cut them manually. By the way, if you live in a flat, it is essential that you have a scratching post at your disposal. Otherwise, be tempted to scratch furniture or curtains.

Every owner must master the necessary gestures for the maintenance of the coat, the eyes, the ears, the teeth and claws of his companion. The first time, it is advisable to learn how to do it with a veterinarian or a professional groomer, because inappropriate gestures could injure or even harm the animal.

In any case, You should not hesitate to start quickly after the cat arrives at your home.. In fact, the sooner a cat gets used to being handled, more easily accept different treatments. In fact, as long as the owner knows how to do it and does not hesitate to rate them with caresses and small attentions, these maintenance sessions can become privileged moments with your animal, so close to his humans.


Like all other races, the Minuet you need a quality diet appropriate to your age and activity level to make sure you get all the nutrients you need.

In addition, although the breed is not prone to obesity, you need to monitor your weight at least once a month. In case of an unjustified weight gain that is confirmed or even accentuated in the following measurements, it is essential to go to a vet. Only a professional can diagnose the origin of the problem (improper diet, drug intolerance, disease, etc.) and indicate how to remedy it.

The same happens if the little feline loses weight abnormally.; this may be a symptom of polycystic kidney disease, to which you are predisposed.

Last but not least, like any cat, the Minuet you need fresh water at all times.

Buy a "Minuet cat (Napoleon)"

The Minuet it is a very recent and not very common breed of cat. For this reason, outside your home country, United States, it can be hard to get one, or at least need to wait many months on the waiting list.

In any case, the price of a kitten Minuet often haunt them 1200 EUR.

Whatever the country, the price depends on the reputation of the breeder, of the lineage from which the animal comes, but also and above all of its intrinsic characteristics; it is this last point that explains that different amounts can be given within the same litter.

In the case of a purchase abroad, It must be taken into account that transport costs and administrative costs are added to the purchase price. In addition, we must respect, of course, legislation on the importation of animals.

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Alternative names:

  • Napoleon
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