If ever there was a version of a Daschund, but in a feline form, it would most obviously be the Munchkin cat. This is one breed of cat that is well-known for its short stubby legs and could be mistaken for a cuddly toy if you’re not too careful. Since the ’40s, they have been seen in specific regions all around the world and no less, a fascinating breed. Everyone wants one.
When one British vet noticed these cats, which look similar to normal cats but with shorter legs, he documented it. Similarly, they were spotted in Russia in the ’50s and in America, thereafter, in 1970. Their history can be read about here
After they started to be noticed by the public and added as pets in many homes, their popularity soared, when they were televised in a cat show by The International Cat Association (TICA) in Oklahoma, United States.
Some say they were bred controversially and were not accepted as a legal breed for many years. Feline competitions would not have them, but households would. But when the New Breed development program, started back in September 1994, they started to be recognized and achieved championship status in early 2000.
Characteristics of The Munchkin
From their physical characteristics, we move on to their personality features. As per the above-mentioned paragraph, it is apparent that they are small cats with very short legs, and have a very cute demeanour. They can be small to medium in size and weigh up to only 9 pounds in total. The females tend to be smaller than the males and can get up to only 8 pounds at most.
Their well-rounded chest and thick torso match the length of their tail which is almost the same length as its body. They do not generally feel like heavy cats when you carry them, even though you can feel that they do have some muscle definition underneath that thick coat.
Their head fits their size and is in proportion to the rest of their body, with high-set ears they can hear very clearly what’s going on around them. They also have large eyes which add to their cuteness. These little felines come in many colours, from their eyes to their fur. Their eyes can range from shades of orange to blue, green and even hazel or yellow, and will depend on the colour of their coat, which could either be long or short depending on how they were bred and who their parents are.
There is no, one specific coat colour as they vary as wide as a painter’s palette, but one thing that makes them stand out from the rest is that they have an uncanny ability to stand on their back two legs like a person. The reason they can do this is that their hind legs are shorter than their front ones. When looking for something they will stand on their back two legs for as long as needed: https://www.tica.org/breeds/browse-all-breeds?view=article&id=857:munchkin-breed&catid=79
For a feline that has such short legs, they can run pretty fast. The only thing they cannot do properly is jump long distances. However, this trait does not stop them from trying to jump onto your furniture or bookshelves, so be careful, as they could topple things over when you’re not looking.
The Health of The Munchkin Cat
If you keep any pet, it is an essential criterion to make sure you understand what the health and dietary requirements are, as well as any genetic issues they may face so you are well-prepared if the time comes to notice any discrepancies in their behaviour or overall persona.
Some of the common health problems these little guys can face include but are not restricted to:
- Hyperthyroidism in Felines
- Feline lower urinary tract disease (FLUDT)
Similar to when adults get a urinary tract infection, felines get their version of this too. If they suffer from FLUTD, it means that they will find it hard to urinate on the go and may also suffer from IBS, or Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Some of the things you can try at home to help relieve them of any discomfort include:
A quality diet – adding some natural and highly nutritious foods to its diet can help his IBS and FLUDT. Moisture content is key so a wet food diet is recommended. Some vets also suggest a special diet for them which either they have pre-prepared or that you can prep for them at home. Try adding some CBD oil to their food, and water as well. Most holistapet cat breeds swear by this to help treat them for many ailments, and so do their owners.
Keep them hydrated – water is an important thing for any type of animal, be it a dog or a cat, if you do not keep them hydrated, they can suffer from a bunch of things you won’t know about until it gets too late. Always make sure they have a bowl of fresh and clean water next to their food at all times.
Reduce Stress – Yes, our animals go through stress as well, and helping them with this is significant to find a remedy to the situation. They can get easily irritated and scared especially with aspects of a change of environment of family members when they get adopted. If family members change their demeanour towards them, it affects them too so make sure there aren’t around any stressful situations within the home or elsewhere.
Besides this, keeping them comfortable and well looked after will help keep them safe, happy and healthy for a long time.