Minuet (Napoleon)


United States



Adult Weight

7-8 pounds

Life Span

15+ years


Playful, affectionate, and laid-back


Napoleon cat


Medium, long hair or short hair



Personality and Temperament

The Minuet cat, formerly known as the Napoleon cat, is a dwarf cat breed created by crossing Munchkin cats with Persian cats, Himalayan cats, and Exotic Shorthairs. The Minuet’s short legs come from the Munchkin. The Persian breed group contributed the Minuet’s abundant coat and rounded head, eyes, and ears. When the breed was first being developed, it was called the Napoleon cat, named for Napoleon Bonaparte, the short-statured French general with a notoriously big personality. However, the The International Cat Association (TICA) voted to change the breed name to Minuet in 2015, just before the breed achieved full championship status. Minuet cats inherited a mix of wonderful traits from the parent breeds the were used in the breed’s development. They are gentle and sweet like the Persian, but can also active and curious like the Munchkin. Minuets are very friendly, loving, and become very bonded with their people. They enjoy cuddles and get along well with people and other pets. The Minuet comes in short-haired and long-haired versions; both have an abundant and dense coat, which may be any color or pattern. The breed has a semi-cobby, well-rounded body and very short legs. Though the body is medium sized, adult Minuets weigh just 7 to 8 pounds. Some Minuet kittens have the gene for short legs and others do not. Minuets with long legs are referred to as “nonstandard.” These Minuets have all the same wonderful attributes as standard Minuets, but they have long legs like a regular cat. Nonstandard Minuets cannot compete in cat shows—these kittens are sold to pet homes. For this reason, a nonstandard Minuet kitten might cost a bit less than a standard Minuet kitten. Although Minuets can’t climb up quite as high as cats with long legs, they can get around easily. They can run surprisingly fast, especially when they get a case of the zoomies, and their low-to-the-ground body is agile, taking turns with ease. If your Minuet has trouble jumping or climbing onto the couch or your bed, you can provide pet stairs or a pet ramp to make it easier for them.


Minuet cats have no specific nutrition requirements, but like all cats they should eat an age-appropriate complete-and-balanced diet. Cats are obligate carnivores, which means the majority of their nutrition should come from meat.
Minuets come in long and short coats, but all Minuets have double coats, which means their coat consists of two layers: a shorter, softer undercoat and longer, dense outercoat. Regardless of length, Minuets should be combed and brushed at least every other day, but daily is best. Regular brushing and combing will prevent mats from forming and keep the coat soft and healthy. Like all cats, Minuets need nail trim every week or two and tooth brushing once a day.
Like their Persian cousins, the Minuet is rather laid-back and does not need a huge amount of exercise. That said, less active cats should be encouraged to play for exercise, something that keeps them physical fit and mentally engaged. Use a variety of different toys and entice your cat to play for 15 minutes at least twice a day—more if you and your cat are up for it!
The scientific name for the condition that causes abnormally short legs in cats is called chondrodystrophism, also known as dwarfism. Chondrodystrophy happens when an autosomal dominate gene causes abnormal cartilage development, leading to abnormal growth of the long bones. A few dog breeds also have dwarfism, including the Basset Hound, Corgi, and Dachshund.


Affection Level 100%
Activity Level 40%
Pet-Friendly 90%
Kid-Friendly 90%
Sociability 100%
Intelligence 60%
Playfulness 70%
Independence 50%
Vocality 20%
Grooming 90%


The Breed Standard


Semi-cobby and well-rounded with a straight topline preferred.


An open and round face with a sweet expression. The muzzle is moderately short and broad, with rounded whisker pads.


The large, round eyes should not protrude nor tear.


Medium sized or slightly smaller, set wide apart with rounded tips.

Legs & Paws

The legs are short and well developed with firm musculature. The front legs front should be short and straight with little to no bowing. The feet are round and neat, but longhairs have tufts.


In proportion to body length or longer. In longhairs, the tail is plumed and flowing.


Double coated. The short coat should be slightly longer than most short-haired cats, dense, plush, and standing away from body. The long coat is dense and full, with a soft, slight undercoat.


All colored permitted.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Are Minuet cats healthy?

    Are Minuet cats healthy?The Minuet is a healthy breed with few genetic health concerns. The breed’s short legs don’t generally cause this cat any problems, and they can run fast and turn on a dime.
  • What is the difference between a Munchkin and a Minuet cat?

    What is the difference between a Munchkin and a Minuet cat?Both the Munchkin and the Minuet are dwarf cat breeds with extremely short legs. The two breeds are related. The Munchkin cat was developed first, in the 1980s. The Minuet was developed in the 1990s, using Munchkin cats and Persians. The breeds are similar, but the Minuet looks more like a Persian in appearance, and also inherited the Persian’s gentle, affectionate, laid-back personality.
  • How much are Minuet cats?

    How much are Minuet cats?The price of a Minuet cat varies, but a standard Minuet (short legs) might cost anywhere from $1,000 to $2,500. Nonstandard Minuets (those with long legs, sometimes called “talls”) are usually less.
  • Can Minuet cats jump?

    Can Minuet cats jump?Minuets have short legs caused by chondrodystrophism, but their legs should be straight and not bowed. Despite their short leg length, Minuet cats can run faster than you might expect and can turn on a dime. Minuets can also jump and climb, but they can’t jump or climb quite as high as cats with long legs. Minuet cat owners appreciate the fact that their short-legged cats don’t get into trouble by climbing up on high counters, bookcases, and shelves.
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