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Dwarf Cats – The Origin Of The Names Of The Breeds
The dwarf cat has interesting breed names. Dwarf cats are unusual and popular. People are interested in them. What is quite unusual and interesting are the names of the different types of dwarfs and, also, how interesting the names are to us. Here are the stories about how they were created.
Stories about the origin of the name come from the person who created the breed and made the name. Accordingly, sometimes the name, such as the dwarf cat, is a hybrid body.
Genetta: This is a dwarf cat created and named by Shannon Kiley of Pawstruk Cattery in 2006. Genettas are labeled as an experimental breed with The International Cat Association (TICA).
Shannon came with the name “Genetta” as was the breed “Designed as an African Genet and part of the scientific name for the gene is ‘genetta’. So I think it will be very fitting and unique.” (Shannon Kiley). African Genet is catlike in appearance and habit but not a cat. It has a long body and dark spots that are very spacey. It is a member of the Viverridae family, which includes mongooses.
To achieve the look Shannon developed Genetta using breeds such as munchkins, bengals, savannas, DSH, and Eastern Shorthairs.
Skook: This type of dwarf kitten is developed Roy Galusha by the intentional breeding of Munchkin to LaPerm. When I asked him how he came up with the name for the dwarf cat breed he gave a detailed and interesting answer, which I reproduce here with his permission:
“I can tell you the answer on Skookum, since the breed was created.
When the breed first started (our first accidental cross), we (not only us, many people in our community who know about them), jokingly referred to them as LaMerms (take the M from Munchkin and replace the P in LaPerm. ) When we look for recognition as a breed, we want to find a good description of the breed, and the name “Poco Chino” which means short and curly in Spanish. However, someone in the UFO who knew Spanish pointed out that that also meant “Little Chinese”, so we canceled that. After much discussion and deliberation, we decided to give him a Native American name. My wife is part Cherokee, so we researched Cherokee names; however, the descriptive name does not have a good flow. Then we decided to go with a Native American Northwest name (since we live in Washington State). We look at many names, and research the meanings. A local Native American word derived from the Chinook language that is part of the Chinook Trade Language is Skookum (pronounced Skoo Kum). The word Skookum means strong, mighty or great. It is also used to denote good health or good spirits. If someone really likes something, they can point out that it’s really skookum (“A boy says apple pie is skookum”) or if they really like a horse (“That’s a skookum horse). So we found that was the perfect name for TICA Officials used the name to protest that it was accepted as a breed and they said the word Skookum meant a scary monster like a big foot. Below is a statement from Tony Johnson, Cultural Council Chair for the Chinook Tribe.
“According to our conversation this morning, the Chinuk Wawa language has two words that differ only by their stress that is universally written as “skookum.” We write these two words the same, except for their stress: “sku’ kum” for something. strong, tough, brave or powerful, and “skuku’m” for something scary or a “monster.” Usually English speakers emphasize the first syllable of a word, and its spelling (which is a historical representation) shows that. “skookum” for its use both is not “devil,” and it should be true. Further discussion of the word “skuku’m seems not important in that it is not a word that is used. As I noted, the word you are using can also be used in a context to mean something like the English “healthy.” In this case it means basically it (the body is) “strong.” I hope this helps you, and I can see where this confusion is coming from. The confusion is based on the difficult nature of people writing native words and then other people reading them who have never heard the exact pronunciation. In our language you cannot confuse these two words or their associated meanings.”
hayu masi (thank you), Tony A. JohnsonCulture Committee Chairman Chinook Indian Tribe / Chinook Nation
The person who I believe started all the flack at TICA about Skookum’s name would know the difference because your husband is one of the leading experts on big foot in the entire country, and I understand that he has written many books and manuals on Big Foot. , to include a passage about the use of the word Skookum in the Chinook language and how it relates to Bigfoot. They will know the correct pronunciation for Big Foot as used by local natives and will know the difference in meanings; however apply that to the rail group registration process. Skookum is also referred to as the Shirley Temple Cat, because it is short and curly. That was the marketing strategy when Cat Fancy first allowed us to advertise them. We came up with the slogan as the best description of the cat. If you have any questions, feel free to ask.”
I can’t add anything to that! Great answer.
Napolean: This small dwarf cat was developed by the intentional mating of the Munchkin to the Persian or shorthair, by Joe Smith. Napoleons are currently registered as Experimental with TICA but recognized as a breed with TDCA (The Dwarf Cat Association).
I admit that I have to have my questions answered about this name. However, some rational thinking and logic led me to this conclusion. This cat is a short dwarf cat. Napolean Bonaparte (French general during the French Revolution) was short of stature by today’s standards (5 feet 6 inches). Also most of the napoleons I have seen are white and Napoleaon Bonaparte rides a white horse (is there a connection there?). Perhaps there is no connection there and the name originates from the short compact profile of the dwarf cat that depicted Napolean Bonaparte.
Kinkalow: The dwarf kinkalow results from the mating of an American Curl to a Munchkin. Terri Harris developed this breed and said this about the name:
“The name Kinkalow was decided on while I was there Kinkos getting some copies done. The Kinkalow has kinky ears and small legs, Kink + small = Kinkalow”. Although Terri didn’t mention this, there is a cat-like animal called Kinkajou (Honey Bear or Cat Monkey) and I wonder if this name influenced her decision.
Twelve: This is easy! He is a mixture of cat dwarf and elf. Being a Cross between Muchkin, Sphynx and American Curl. This dwarf cat is short, hairless and has ears that go back at the tips.
Munchkin: In 1983 music teacher Sandra Hochenedel discovered two cats hiding under the car. He saved them; both have short, stubby legs. He called them Munchkins after the little people in The Wizard of Oz. This is the base of the dwarf cat.
Bambino: Stephanie and Pat Osborne of Holy Moly Restaurant set this dwarf cat breed. As Pat is of Italian extraction and as the cat keeps its cat like appearance and character throughout its life they named it “Bambino”.
Lambkins: A straightforward dictionary definition, I think, provides the answer. Lambkins means “very lamb”. Lambkin cats are a new dwarf cat breed that comes from a cross between the Munchkin and the Selkirk Rex to produce kittens that are furry, just like a little lamb.
Attack: A Knook is a kind of immortal being or ghost in the work of L. Frank Baum. Knooks are keepers on animals. They have this shape. (source: Wikipedia). I admit that I did some research on the name of this dwarf cat breed and it turned up nothing.
However, if a gut is a ghost that gives insight. A fairy is delicate and small. Knook is a Kinkalow with a coat of a LaPerm/Skookam type and that means this cat is going to be cute and small….
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