ALL CAT BREED PROFILES

Minskin Cat: Short and Sweet

Image showing a hairless cat sitting
Stella Noble
Written by Stella Noble

Do you have a taste for the exotic? Then you’re probably considering adopting a hairless cat. Hairless cats have been growing increasingly popular these days, and there’s no shortage of different breeds to choose from. It could get confusing very quickly, but if you don’t mind sparing some extra care and attention for your baby in exchange for everlasting love and fun, there is nothing that could compare to the Minskin Cat.

The Minskin cat is lovable and playful; they get along really well with other animals in a household. The hairless “corgi” of the cat world is the cutest thing you’ve ever seen—not to mention their affectionate nature which will endear them to anyone. As a word of warning, there will be some genetic health issues that you as a pet owner need to be wary of. Still, if you’re prepared to learn more about them to provide them with the right kind of care, they will keep you company for many years to come.

Cute-New-Born-Sphynx-Kitten

In this article, you will learn more about the Minskin cat and find out about their nature, history, and other facts related to this breed so you can take great care of your feline companion.

Breed Characteristics

  • Adaptability: High

  • Grooming: Low maintenance

  • Health: Average

  • All Around Friendliness: Very good

  • Exercise Needs: Average

Cat Breed GroupSemi-Hairless, Crossbreed
SizeSmall; average height of 7 – 8 inches
Weight4 – 6 pounds
Lifespan12 – 15 years

Minskin cats have Boston roots. Paul McSorley, a cat fancier, wanted to create a cat with a color similar to that of a Siamese, but semi-hairless. He proceeded to cross a Sphynx with other breeds like the Munchkin, Burmese, and Devon Rex cats. The first Minskin cat was born in July 2000. The efforts to breed continued and resulted in at least 50 new cats in 2005.

The Minskin’s name came from combining the words “miniature” and “skin.” Since the cat is still considered a new breed, their breeding development is closely monitored by the International Cat Association. This new breed is yet to be listed under the Cat Fancier’s Association’s website.

The cat can be found in all colors and patterns—solids, tortoise shells, tabby patterns, and colors with white. The Minskin is described as semi-cobby because of their stocky and small build. They have a rounded head with large round eyes and a heart-melting sweet expression. Even after they’ve grown into full adulthood, the cats will keep their kitten-like appearance.

Image showing a Minsk cat lying on her back

The cat has a dense fur point that feels like cashmere or satin. Seniors would especially love petting the cat because their sparse coat makes their body feel warm to the touch. Cat lovers would greatly appreciate having this cat around because their coat does not shed as much as other cats.

Minskins are engaging and affectionate. They love to be around people and children. They are like dogs who would wait for their humans at the door, waiting for them to come home. They coexist well with other animals, so if your home has a dog, you will have very little problem introducing the two of them.

A cat lover’s dream, the Minskin is intelligent, playful, and entertaining. This lap cat will love to snuggle with their human especially because they need warmth to keep themselves protected from the cold.

Studio picture of a Minsk cat

Minskin cats require a healthy diet, but they do not need any specific food. Thus, owners can feed them any nutritious and veterinarian-recommended brand of cat food. When feeding, it would help to select food that is suitable for their life stage, especially when they are still kittens since they would need a specific formula to promote growth and health. Giving them treats up to 5 or 10 percent of the cat’s diet is also encouraged.

The Minskin do well indoors, but homeowners have to make sure that they have easy access to food and drinking water, bed, toys, and other indoor essentials. If the cat insists on going out, make sure to keep them supervised and provide ample clothing during winter months because they are very sensitive to the cold.

Like all cats, it helps to take the Minskin regularly to the vet for checkups. They need to have up to date vaccinations.

Main Highlights

  • The Minskin is the result of a crossbreeding experiment between a Munchkin, a Sphynx, and other types of cats by Paul McSorley. There were at least 50 individual cats of this breed recorded in 2005.

  • Since it is a relatively new breed, it is still not listed on the Cat Fancier’s Association website.

  • The name Minskin is a combination of the words “miniature” and “skin.”

  • This cat breed has short legs and a stocky body—earning them the moniker “corgi of the cat world.” They sparse hair in different parts of their body.

  • The Minskin has different coat color and patterns, including but not limited to solids, tortoise shells, tabby patterns, and colors with white.

  • The Minskin will retain their kitten-like appearance throughout their life—a trait that makes them endearing to people.

  • Minskins are very friendly and could live well in homes with children and other animals.

  • This cat breed is very intelligent, playful, and entertaining.

  • Because they easily get cold, their owners have to keep them warm by bundling them up in clothing.

  • While they are generally healthy, the Minskin is predisposed to abnormalities of the spine and the chest due to their unique body shape.

  • This cat breed is not a picky-eater but should be given veterinarian-recommended food.

Breed History

The Minskin is only a decade old. This breed was developed in Boston in the year 1998 by Paul McSorley. He wanted to create a cat breed with sparse coat and a warm and friendly attitude. By crossing the Sphynx and a Munchkin, he was able to produce the first standard Minskin by 2000. In the year 2005, there are at least 50 Minskin in existence.

Size

The Minskin cats are about 7 to 8 inches in height and weight around 4 to 6 pounds. The cat breed is known for their very short legs and stocky body. They are known as the kitty version of the corgi due to their unique appearance.

Personality and Character

Minskin cats are known for engaging with people and other pets, and they are also very affectionate. They love their human, so it is normal to see them waiting at the door to greet people. They also go well with canines and other felines in the household—a manifestation of how playful and entertaining they are.

They are also known for being very intelligent and determined, so they are good at solving puzzle games. A good example can be seen when they want to climb to a higher place. As they have short legs, they would not be jumping and would instead find another route that will still take them to the top.

Close-up image of a minskin cat getting rest in the sun

The friendly Minskin is also athletic and playful. They love to speed around the house and playing with toys that can keep up with their activities. They are also excellent lap cats because they seek out other people’s warmth. Families with children, senior family members, and other dogs and cats would also enjoy cuddling with this cat breed as their skin feels warm to the touch.

Health and Potential Problems

The Minskin is a generally healthy breed as long as their human companions keep the cat warm because their scant hair makes them greatly sensitive to temperature extremes. However, despite their general good health, Minskins are predisposed to some genetic conditions. Due to their unique body shape, the cat may develop related health problems as they grow older, such as:

  • A spine curvature condition known as lordosis

  • Concave or sunken chest

  • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

  • Increased food consumption during the winter months

  • Ear infections

  • Eye irritation

Care Features

Their predisposed conditions aside, a Minskin cat is relatively healthy but, as we’ve mentioned previously, they require protection against the elements because they greatly lack a protective coat. The cat should be bathed regularly—preferably every couple of weeks—to protect their skin from dryness. They also have a tendency to accumulate oils which can result in rashes.

The Minskin is also an active cat, which means they will require some physical activity. Giving them toys for chasing would be enough to keep them active inside the house. In fact, the Minskin has a soft spot for interactive toys that would get them jumping and pouncing.

Close-up of a Minsk cat lying down and looking at the camera

Their short legs definitely do not stop them from climbing to high places—although they may not do so by way of jumping the way other cats do. They are very clever and creative and can use find routes to reach their destination. Veterinarians discourage owners from taking their Minskins outside especially during seasons with extreme temperatures because of their vulnerabilities.

Feeding Schedule

The Minskin cat, like every other cats out there, would need a healthy diet although there are no special requirements for this breed. What’s very important is for the cat to be given nutritious food as recommended by your veterinarian. In addition, these cats would need a specific vitamin called taurine to keep them healthy. The Minskin can be given treats up to 5 or 10 percent of their diet. It is best to consult your veterinarian to determine the frequency of feeding especially during winter time when they tend to eat more.

Coat, Color, and Grooming

The Minskin is almost hairless, but there are a few parts of their body like the tail, ears, legs, groin, and face that have some hair. They are known to come in different coat colors like solids, tortoise shells, tabby patterns, and colors with white.

Two hairless cats sitting and looking at someone

Minskin cats do not have much hair, so there is no need to brush them regularly. Owners can simply wipe the coat as needed. After every bath, wrap a warm towel around their body to keep them warm as they are very sensitive to the cold.

The large ears of the Minskins need to be cleaned regularly to keep them safe from infections. Their teeth should also be cleaned, and their nails must be trimmed regularly.

Children and Other Pets Compatibility

The Minskin is the ideal companion for people who want a lap cat, for people with cold or arthritic hands, for senior citizens, for families with school-age children, and for families with dogs and other cats. This breed is famous for being outgoing and playful. They love to be handled. They love sleeping in their human’s lap, and they bask greatly in the attention given to them by their human companions. They love being with humans who satisfy their needs for playing and affection. Thus, school-age children would make perfect companions for them.

Close-up image of a Minsk cat in a towel

They could get along well with other pets like dogs and other cats. As the Minskin cats also have their fair share of the feline hunting gene, it would come as no surprise that they also love spending some time playing chase with other pets in the household. But make sure to clip the other pets’ nails often as the Minskin has very thin and fragile skin. You don’t want them getting hurt accidentally during playtimes.

Wrap Up

The Minskin is known for their short, stubby legs, and their almost hairless appearance. Despite these traits, they are known for being athletic as they move around and run fast just like any other cat. They are also very intelligent. They could use different furniture to reach a height that their short legs would otherwise not allow them to get to in one go—earning them the cat parkour reputation.

While they may be small and are vulnerable to extreme temperatures, Minskins are generally healthy cats. But owners have to watch out for genetic problems that they may develop like the spine curvature issue, concave or sunken chest, and heart problems.

An attendee holds a Sweet Minskin cat during the 141st Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in New York City, U.S.

They are very warm and loving. They love to be around people—greeting them at the door or climbing into their laps for a tickling session. Their temperament makes them a great companion for homes with children, senior members, and other pets.

Do you find the Minskin, with their wonderful personality and unique features, attractive? Or would you prefer adopting a cat that doesn’t come with as many genetic health issues? We would love to hear from you, so please share your thoughts in the comments section below!

About the author
Stella Noble
Stella Noble

Stella Noble lives in Warren, Michigan with her family and three cats. She is a Certified Cat Trainer and a member of the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants.

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