As a unique and mostly hairless breed, the Minskin is quickly becoming a popular alternative to the Siamese cat. Being a fairly new breed, they are highly sought after by cat lovers and come with a fairly high price tag!
The breed has a distinctive look as their facial features and body are disproportionately large in comparison to their head and leg size. However, the selling point for this munchkin cat breed is their shining personalities.
|Minskin Breed Overview|
|Height||7-8 inches (17-20 cm)|
|Weight||4-6 lbs (1.8-2.8 kg)|
|Colors||Gray, black, pink; much of the body is hairless|
|Suitable for||Singles, families with children or other pets, elderly|
|Temperament||Affectionate and interactive|
|Breed Traits Overview|
History Of The Minskin Cat Breed
The Minskin was created by a series of breeding efforts by cat enthusiast, Paul McSorley in Boston, Massachusetts. McSorley had the desire to create an experimental breed with looks similar to that of a Siamese, so beginning in 1998 he began to crossbreed.
The first breeding was between a Sphynx and a Munchkin cat to accomplish the hairless characteristic and small stature that he desired in the Minskin. Later, a Burmese and Devon Rex with a full coat of fur were crossed to complete the Minskin breed in 2000.
Just five years after the breed was developed, there were 50 Minskins—which got their name through the combination of the two words “miniature” and “skin”.
The Minskin isn’t yet recognized by the International Cat Association since it’s still too new and more monitoring of genetic traits needs to be done before it can be listed on the Cat Fanciers’ Association website.
How Much Does The Minskin Cost?
As an advanced new breed, the Minskins join the highly-priced Sphynx cat breed category, listing them at the high price of $1,500 and $5,000. This averages around €1260 to €4200, £1080 to £3600, and A$1990 to A$6630.
Although they come at a high price when compared to several other breeds, in comparison to the Sphynx breeds, they come in at the lowest price point. Since the similar Peterbald and Elf Cat can range upwards of $6,000 to $8,000, the Minskin is a great option for buyers looking for a hairless cat with a lower budget.
Unfortunately, since this is a newer breed, it’s extremely difficult to find reputable breeders or rescues available. This is in part because there is a lack of a breed list online where buyers can find cats for sale.
For those who are sold on buying this breed, it may take a bit more research than usual to get your hands on a Minskin cat!
Personality Traits Of The Minskin
Although their hairless skin can look a bit rough or intimidating, the Minskin is an extremely affectionate cat. They have no problem with human interaction and across the board, love being lap cats.
Since they are a small and peaceful breed, they’re very family-friendly, and also very welcoming to strangers in the home.
Some Minskin owners have reported that the breed fails to recognize danger due to its calm demeanor. This can be a downfall if your cat is outdoors a lot but can be a huge benefit for those with small kids and lots of guests coming into the home.
In addition to this, the Minskin has no problem getting along with other household pets.
While they will enjoy playing with other animals and humans alike, they cannot jump as high as most other cat breeds due to their short legs. However, you will soon see that this will not stop them from trying! The Minskin has an average amount of energy for a cat and will enjoy scaling your furniture until they reach the highest point their little legs can get to.
The breed is relatively smart and known for its creativity. Since they have small bodies that can’t get around as well as other breeds, they channel their intelligence into problem-solving which you can cultivate by offering a variety of toys as well as multi-level cat perches.
To help them in climbing as high as they can, you can buy window perches and get creative with a cat hammock to encourage your cat to stay off of the furniture but still use their problem-solving skills.
How To Take Care Of A Minskin
Since the Minskin is a small and hairless breed, they have a few specific care requirements that your average cat doesn’t.
As with all breeds, it’s important to give your Minskin the highest quality diet you can afford. Kittens will rely on their mother’s milk but once they are weaned off make the switch to quality kitten food. Once they reach about one year of age you can start to give them adult cat food to ensure they are receiving the proper nutrients.
When your Minskin becomes an adult, it is important not to continue feeding them milk as they will develop lactose intolerance. Beyond that, they don’t have any specific food restrictions or requirements besides having a diet made up mostly of animal protein.
It’s highly encouraged to consult your veterinarian before changing your cats’ diet to ensure the food you are purchasing has all the necessary nutrients they need.
Make sure to have a clean water dish out for your cat at all times. You’ll find that your cat’s overall health will improve with frequent cleaning of both their food and water dishes as well.
While exercise is recommended for the breed, it’s strongly discouraged to bring your Minskin outside with you, whether it be for exercise or otherwise. There are several reasons for this, the first being that their skin is extremely sensitive because of their sparse coat. They’re more prone to getting sunburns and other skin injuries like reactions to allergens.
Since they are very trusting and unaware of dangers to themselves, they’re more likely to have a potentially dangerous run-in with another animal or human. This leaves them at a higher risk of getting lost or injured with poor survival instincts.
Similarly, since the breed is relatively new and unique, high levels of theft have been reported among Minskins! So, whenever you’re traveling around with your Minskin, be sure to keep a close eye on them.
Consider investing in a cat playpen that you can transfer outside if you insist on bringing them outdoors to play every once in a while. This will keep them within a safe boundary until brought back into the home.
With that said, it’s highly recommended to do all playing inside the safety of your home. By making your Minskin exclusively an indoor cat, there is still much you can do to entertain them!
Invest in some small toys that will be easy for them to play with, keeping in mind that many cat toys will be too large for this small-bodied breed. A great choice would be to invest in kitten toys as their size is consistent with that of a kitten of other more common breeds.
Although brushing will not be a huge consideration with this breed, there are other grooming needs that accompany hairless cats. About once a week it’s recommended to wipe down the skin of your Minskin. With regular cleaning, you can prevent a yeast infection from forming on the skin.
Maintaining skin health and hydration is important in optimizing the health and comfort of your cat. This may entail more frequent baths than would normally be recommended for cats since they don’t have that layer of fur protection.
Due to their large ear size, it’s a good idea to clean their ears frequently and keep an eye out for any potential infections, discomfort, or mites. If you see any abnormal behaviors consistent with ear troubles, be sure to treat them as soon as possible to avoid any inner ear problems.
With intelligent breeds, training is entirely possible and highly encouraged! If you start training your Minskin as young as possible, you can maintain more control and order within your home.
Although they are smart enough for training, this breed will not need too much behavioral training since they don’t have higher than average energy levels. Basic training such as litter box and furniture training may suffice for this breed.
Although the Minskins generally have good health, it’s important to consider the health issues common in the breeds of cats that were crossed to create the Minskin breed. By looking at the Sphynx, Munchkin, Devon Rex, and Burmese, there are a few common health problems that could present themselves in your cat.
Spine curvature or injuries are prominent in dwarf breeds primarily due to their skeleton having a long body and short legs. This lack of spine support can result in injuries and cause them to get sunken or concave chests.
These issues can be exacerbated if your cat is constantly jumping down off of high platforms or furniture, which further drives home how important it’s to get multi-level perches or cat trees to avoid this unnecessary jumping.
In addition to these potential problems, if you live in a colder environment you must keep your cat warm; due to their lack of hair, they are quite sensitive to cold temperatures.
With a breed that has poor heat regulation, a heated bed is a great investment regardless of your climate as your cat will naturally seek out a warm place to snuggle up.
If you are unable to provide additional sources of heat for your Minskin, you may find that they over-eat during colder months to help insulate their body. This can put them at higher risk of obesity and heart problems, like hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
Physical Attributes Of The Minskin
Just by looking at a photo of this breed of cat, it’s not difficult to see that they are unique in their appearance. However, there are many features beyond their odd proportions and general lack of hair to be aware of before purchasing one of these cats.
- Head: With a rounded head and some sparse hair coverage, the head of the Minskin is very similar in looks to that of a Siamese. They also have small and often slightly compressed noses, a broad muzzle, and rounded chins.
- Body: The long, stocky body of the Minskin is disproportionately larger than the head and legs of the cat.
- Ears: Ears are triangular and very large in comparison to head size. The outer edge of the ear comes down to meet the edges of the cat’s eyes.
- Eyes: The Minskin’s eyes are large and round; again, the size of the eyes are disproportionately large for the size of the cat’s face.
- Legs and Paws: Legs are very short compared to the body size. With front legs slightly longer than back legs. Paw size is proportional to leg length, making for a short stocky frame.
- Tail: Lean, sometimes hairless tails with a slight curl to them are the most common tail type in this breed. Tails are usually shorter than body length.
- Coat: Although they have mostly a mostly hairless coat, it’s most common to find some hair coverage on the face, ears, tail, legs, and nose. The coat that they do have is thin and sparse.
- Color: Much of the cat is pink, gray, or black. The body and belly are generally a pink hue due to the fact that there is no hair, while the face will often have black or gray tones.
Since the hair patterns can differ greatly from cat to cat, you may find that each Minskin breed has different colors or parts of its body that are hair-covered.
This variability does not mean they are a different breed, just that there is still a lot of inconsistency within the breed itself.
Conclusion On The Minskin Cat Breed
Although it’s likely to see more changes in the Minskin breed over the next few decades as breeders perfect their genetics, the Minskin is already an incredible addition to any household. As low-maintenance active lap cats, they are both energetic and affectionate, which allows them to integrate into any human family with ease.