Minuet (Napoleon) Shorthair

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all colours and patterns
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The Minuet is a squat sweet-looking cat, which was bred in the United States in 90s of XX century. The combination of a doll-like facial expression and short limbs constantly stimulates the interest of cat lovers to this breed. There are short-haired and long-haired varieties of this cat and both of them may have both short and standard legs.

Photo: © cattery Gatil Martinelli (gatilmartinelli.com)


The originator of the Minuet is Joe Smith who began outcrossing Persians to Munchkins in 1996. He was an enthusiast and breeder of the Basset Hound, which is famous for its low-slung physique. Perhaps that’s why the genetic make-up of the Munchkin excited his curiosity and Joe made up his mind on developing a cat breed with similar characteristic.

However, his aspiration was to invent the feline variety, which would induce admiration regardless of the length of its legs. In his breeding program Joe Smith utilised old-fashioned Persians with exceptionally endearing doll-like faces. The resulting cat was granted with the name Minuet in honour of the short-statured Minuet Bonaparte.

In 2001 Joe petitioned the International Cat Association about enrolment of the Minuet on the list of Experimental breeds. In the next year he made the big step towards full recognition of this breed as it was moved forward towards Registration Only status. The process of developing a new cat breed takes determination and patience and it’s often associated with lots of temporary failures and setbacks.

In 2008 Joe Smith switched to other projects and passed on the baton of promoting the Minuet towards the championship status to other cat breeders. Thanks to the efforts of Sam Tate (Wonderfulkitty cattery), Margie Gardner (Creators) and especially Teri Harris (Munchkinlane) this cat was finally advanced to the Preliminary New Breed in September 2011. Its specimens were permitted to participate in cat shows in that class since May 2012.


The Minuet is a tender, good-natured and outgoing cat. It’s very generous in expression of its affection and expects getting the same amount of care and attention from its favourite people. It will faithfully tread in your steps while you are doing your housework or nestle up comfortably to your warm side at nights. The breed owes its people-oriented personality to the Persian side of its ancestry but its vigour and inquisitive mind it took from the Munchkin. The latter granted this cat with ability to move with mind-boggling speed and deftness.

In most cases the Minuet is affable with newcomers in the home environment although some initial restraint and shyness are also fairly typical for its member. Children like watching this cat playing and gladly invite it to their lively games. Remember that it doesn’t appreciate rough-housing and will defend itself with claws and teeth so your kids must know the rules of cat’s handling. This breed will live peacefully with other pets in your house but it would surely prefer the company of other felines.

The Minuet is lavishly endowed with typical feline curiosity so make sure that your pet has abundance of puzzle toys at its disposal. The training of this cat is a very easy task and it will eagerly retrieve small ball or other miniature objects at the command of its master. This breed will make a wonderful feline companion for anyone who likes vigorous cats with appealing look.

Health Problems

The most common problems for the breed include:

· polycystic kidney disease (PKD).


The amount of grooming that the Minuet will need depends mostly on the length of its coat. The short-haired cat will look tidy if you brush it only once a week.

Other care procedures, which are essential for keeping your pet in good health, include regular nail clipping and ear cleaning if they look dirty. This cat needs very rare bathing. Begin training your Minuet to above-mentioned routines as early as possible so the adult cat won’t dread them.