|Miniature cat, Lilly, |
photo copyright Pocket Kittys
As I read it the American Miniatures cat is simply a very small cat that is bred in America. So, what is the criteria? Well, this breed is recognized by the Rare and Exotic Feline Registry (REFR) who provide some good guidelines.
The criteria for a cat to qualify as an American miniature cat is as follows:
- there are no restrictions on coat color and pattern or hair length
- size is the criteria which dictates whether this is a miniature cat
- the American miniature cat is about half the size of the average domestic cat. See a size comparison between purebred cat breeds and wild cats
- the weight of a mature American miniature cat should not exceed 7 lbs
- a better method to decide if a cat is an American miniature cat is by the cat's length and height. To qualify for registration with the Rare and Exotic Feline Registry a mature cat (at least 18 months of age) should be a maximum of 12 inches from the base of the neck to the base of the tail "fully stretched out" and no more than 10 inches from the "top of the shoulder blade" to the "top of the paw" and finally weigh no more than 7 lbs as stated above
- these cats are proportioned like full sized domestic cats and are therefore not dwarf cats which have shorter legs but normally proportioned bodies. See Dwarf cats and Miniature cats
- the standard for the American Miniature cat is completely open such that tailless or short tailed cats (see Manx cat for example) and polydactyl cats are accepted (see American Polydactyl cat)
- the offspring of registered parents qualify for registration
The Rare and Exotic Feline Registry advises that breeding stock or unregistered outcrosses (cats not registered with the REFR) should:
- not exceed 7 lbs in weight
- not exceed a length of 14 inches from the base of the neck to the base of the tail
- not exceed 11 inches from "shoulder blade to wrist"
- the breeder should take note that an miniature female cat may have difficulty mating with a male that is too big or if the female is too small. As a result selection for breeding should be carried out with care.
Source: Rare and Exotic Feline Registry
Picture header: published with permission of the breeder Pocket Kittys