If you prefer a tiny cat that the teacup cat is the ideal cat for you. Teacup cats are smaller than the usual cats due to genetic, hormonal and environmental factors. Interested in getting one? Read on to check how much they cost and for a more information about these miniature cats.
Teacup cat prices: How much does a teacup cat cost?
Teacup cats usually cost from $700 to $2,700 depending on the breeder, history of the cat, breed and color. Medical costs and maintenance are usually around $300 to $500 per month. Munchkin cats usually cost between $500 to $1,200 depending on the age, color, gender, leg size and breed of the cat. Kittens are usually more expensive compared to older cats.
However, if you prefer adopting from a shelter you can get a real steal since shelters offer low or no-cost adoptions. Teacup cats from shelters are usually spayed or neutered and free vet visits may be included with the adoption cost.
What is a teacup cat?
Teacup cats are small breeds of cats that are bred to be as small as possible. They are commonly known as dwarf cats and munchkin cats although the latter is a recognized breed that suffers from chondrodysplastic dwarfism. Munchkins are dwarf cats with stouter legs but teacup cats are much smaller because of chance mutations.
Teacup cats are bred to be about two-thirds of the size of average adult cats which are around nine to 10 pounds. Most teacup cats only weigh around five to six pounds. These cats are the mini versions of typical domestic cats. Sadly, inbreeding among teacup cats increases the risk of genetic diseases.
There are now many cat breeds that have teacup cats but are not formally recognized as breeds. Unfortunately, because of the lack of actual recognition, some people sell so-called teacup cats although the kittens were just sickly, poorly nourished or the runt of the litter. Thus, you should only get one from a certified local breeder.
Important things to remember when purchasing teacup cats
These are the vital things to remember when purchasing a teacup cat:
- ask for a health certificate stating that the cat is free of diseases
- ask for proof that the cat already got its shots
- ask for proof that the cat is already spayed or neutered
- ask for proof that the cat has been dewormed and is flea-free
- request a signed contract that includes a health guarantee that the cat is free of congenital defects
- have your cat microchipped in case she gets lost or wanders away
- have your cat checked by a professional vet within 72 hours after purchase
- schedule your cat for booster shots after a year
- consider pet insurance for your cat
- beware of unscrupulous breeders who may pass off normal yet small cats as teacup cats to earn more
- look for a good breeder who limits the number of kittens to keep the mama cat healthy and to avoid inbreeding
Are there benefits in buying a teacup cat?
Cat experts agree that there are no clear benefits to buying and having a teacup cat. While these miniature cats are good for people living in small spaces or apartments, typical domestic cats can similarly do well in such places. It appears that people who own teacup cats buy them for their cuteness and “instagrammable” physical features. The downside is that people tend to disregard the negative health effects the breeding process may have on the cats.
What are the common health concerns of teacup cats?
These are the common health issues among teacup cats due to interbreeding and selective breeding:
- heart disease including heart murmurs and enlarged heart
- seizures, epilepsy and neurological signs
- osteoarthritis and bone deformities; severe growth retardation
- misshapen jaw and bowed legs
- slow rate of muscle mass growth; possibility of decreased use of limbs
- soft spot on top of the skull
- polycystic kidney disease
- shortened life span
- kidney disease
- reproductive issues
- slow growth rate
- pain or distress
- hearing impairment
Various kinds of teacup cats
These are the various kinds of teacup and dwarf cats as recognized by cat associations like the International Cat Association or TICA and the Dwarf Cat Association:
- Lambkin – a cross between a Munchkin and a Selkirk Rex
- Dwelf – the result of crossbreeding a Munchkin and American Curl
- Napoleon – the result of crossbreeding a Munchkin and a Persian cat
- Bambino – the result of crossbreeding a Munchkin and Sphynx cat
- Skookum – the result of crossbreeding between a Munchkin and LaPerm cat
- Genetta – the result of crossbreeding a Munchkin, Bengal cat, Savannah cat, domestic short hair and Oriental shorthair
- Minskin – the result of crossbreeding a Munchkin and Sphynx, Devon Rex and Burmese cat
Cat lovers are generally drawn to teacup cats because of their miniature size and cuteness. These adorable furry babies cost around $700 to $2,700 depending on the history of the cat, breed, color and breeder. However, while most people fancy them for their small and endearing physical appearance there are no real benefits in having one and there are many health risks and conditions associated with these cats.
Image: istockphoto.com / Thomas Leirikh