The Real Minuet Breeders

A website dedicated to preventing Minuet (Napoleon) lovers from being scammed by fraudulent websites claiming to be real Minuet (Napoleon) catteries.

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Education

Learn how to identify a fake cattery to protect yourself from fraud

Fake pet websites are becoming more and more prolific and professional looking. Their sophisticated sites draw unsuspecting pet buyers into their web of deceit, which ends with the theft of hundreds, and possibly thousands, of dollars. This type of fraud is profitable and presents little risk to the thief, since law enforcement is lax in these areas. These criminals know this, so if a buyer discovers that they’ve been defrauded, there generally is no recourse. The fake cattery simply stops communicating with the suspicious buyer, leaving the victim angry, heartbroken, and without money. And most of the time, the buyer has paid by a means with no way of recovering their lost funds.

Please read the following warning signs to learn how to identify a fake cattery. Any one warning by itself may not be indicative of a fake site, but each warning should be taken into consideration in the overall assessment of the site as being a fraudulent business.

1. Professional looking website.  While not all professional-looking websites are indicative of a fake cattery, it is a red flag simply because these criminals are getting more sophisticated in making their business enticing to buyers. In truth, many of the Real Minuet Breeders are hobby breeders who aren’t website-savvy or don’t have the time to make a professional-looking one, so they rely on referrals and social media sites to sell their kittens. However, there are some great websites of real Minuet (Napoleon) breeders, but they are usually personalized. If you find a professional-looking website that seems clinical, keep this red flag in the back of your mind. Surprisingly, a website that has it’s flaws in design is more realistic than one that is professional looking.

2. Impersonal website. A website that doesn’t show the home their cats are raised in is a red flag that the business is fake. However, I have seen some fake sites that are including a few candid pictures of kittens on their sites to make them look real. It was other clues within the site that confirmed them as being fraudulent. Examine these candid photos to see if they show the same background of a home or décor style, or if they come from a variety of home decors.

3. Grainy or poor photo quality. Many fraudulent pet websites steal photos of kittens off of other sites or social media forums. The picture quality can be compromised if duplicated. Examine all photos on the website to determine if the photos are crisp and clear.

4. Posed kittens. A site that shows kittens posed only in a “studio-type” setting is a red flag. This is not only a warning for a phony cattery, but also a kitty mill. Kitty mills are businesses that breed cats en masse, at the detriment of the cats; often using strays or non-pedigreed cats as their breeding stock. Look for kittens shown in their real home setting.

5. No parent pictures. Many fake websites are frivolous about showing pictures of kittens but not of the parents. A savvy buyer who knows something of genetics can look at the “parent cats” and know if a kitten possibly came from that pairing. However, many buyers are not that familiar with cat genetics. It is more likely that a fraudulent business doesn’t have the cats to show. A Real Minuet Breeder is very proud of their parent cats and will have their pictures on their website, on their social media sites, or provide them upon request. Be sure to look for candid pictures of the parent cats.

6. Number of kittens offered. It isn’t often that a Real Minuet Breeder has more than a handful of kittens at a time; and in reality, most of a Minuet (Napoleon) litter are generally spoken for before they are posted as available to the public. A website that offers several Minuet (Napoleon) kittens as available is generally indicative of a fraudulent business.  So how do you get a Minuet (Napoleon) kitten if the majority of them are spoken for before they are posted to the public? Get on a waiting list. Get on several waiting lists.

7. Multiple breeds offered. If a website offers a multitude of breeds, be wary of it. Proper breeding of cats is an expensive endeavor. Food, litter, vet bills, association fees, etc. cost a significant amount of money. The more cats a breeder has, the more expense is involved. Therefore, most Real Minuet Breeders only breed Minuets (Napoleons). They might also breed Munchkins or those of the Persian breed group because those are also used to produce Minuets (Napoleons), but aside from that, too many breeds offered is a red flag.  Question how the “breeder” can afford to have so many cats in their home. Imagine what type of home houses that many cats. The smell, the cleanliness, the tracking of which cat bred which cat, etc. If cats are really in existence, are they kept in cages?  This warning sign is also a sign of a kitty mill. Never purchase a kitten from a kitty mill. (See page on kitty mills, backyard breeders, and designer cat breeders on this website.) These businesses are the epitome of animal cruelty.

8. Age of the parents. If a website does give information about the parent cats, be aware that a female should not be bred beyond five to six years old, younger being the better age to retire a mother cat. Male cats can sire litters later in life because the effort doesn’t drain them as much as a pregnant or nursing mom. However, if a breeder states that the age of their mother cat is in the upper years, you are dealing with either a fake breeder, a kitty  mill, or an uneducated breeder. None of those are a breeder you want to deal with.

9. No pictures of a new litter. Real Minuet Breeders are proud of the arrival of their new litters. They will post information about upcoming litters, with little vignettes about the parents. However, fake websites don’t have any real cats, so they don’t have birth pictures of the kittens they will offer for sale later. Websites that have birth photos of new litters are more indicative of a real cattery.

10. Know the breed standard. I have seen many of these fake websites claiming to sell different breed cats that are definitely not the breed they claim to be. If you are looking for just a cute kitten, you’re better off shopping at a shelter or rescue, which has many adorable kittens that need good homes. However, if you want the full package of a delightful Minuet (Napoleon), make sure you are getting the real deal. If a kitten being presented on a website as a Minuet (Napoleon) doesn’t look like a Minuet (Napoleon), it is likely not a Minuet (Napoleon). Steer clear of that website.

11. Poor contact information. If a website doesn’t give the name of the breeder, this is a huge red flag. If there is no phone number to actually speak to the breeder, be wary of the website. Many Real Minuet Breeders do not put their address on their website, so the lack of an address shouldn’t be the only indication of a fake business. However, ask the breeder where they are located if you are able to speak to them on the phone. Ask for an address. Use county property appraiser tools to verify the address as an actual address.  I discovered a scammer when I ran his address in his county’s property appraiser website. The address was a fraud and the check he sent for a kitten was a bank fraud.

12. Kittens put on sale. The market for the Minuet (Napoleon) breed is a rigorous one. That’s why scammers have chosen this breed to make fake websites for. However, real Minuet breeders don’t have to put their kittens on sale. So if you find a website that has a holiday sale or slashes their prices, it is a fake business.

13. Be very wary if a breeder will not speak to you on the phone. A phone call with a breeder can give you a lot of information on whether the breeder is real or a fake. That’s one reason why these fake businesses will not speak to you on the phone. However, I’ve heard from a few people that they actually spoke to someone on the phone, but it turned out to be a phony business. A phone call will give you the opportunity to judge a person’s knowledge of the Minuet (Napoleon) breed. Know the Minuet (Napoleon) breed yourself before you question the breeder to see if they know the breed themselves. Know the genetics of how they get the dwarf gene (there are some pretty specific pieces of information that will weed out a fake business). Ask about their personality, their history, origin, who created the breed, why their name was changed from Napoleon, etc. If a breeder doesn’t know the answers to specific breed questions, avoid them. A breeder should know their breed inside and out. If not, they are a fake business, a kitty mill, or a backyard breeder, or an ignorant breeder that is not producing the best kittens they can.

14. Clipped and pasted paragraphs about the breed. If you see the same wording in a website that came from another website, especially about what Minuets (Napoleons) are, be wary. Someone is copying another person’s knowledge of these cats. Peruse several Minuet (Napoleon) websites to identify the clipped and pasted paragraphs. Look at what is written on Wikipedia or cat association sites to  see if a website has copied paragraphs from those sources. A good breeder knows the breed and can tell you what the Minuet (Napoleon) is and why it is such a prized possession. They know the standard and personality traits. They don’t need to copy someone else’s knowledge about the breed.

15. Paid deposits to get on a waiting list. Although some Real Minuet Breeders require deposits to get on their waiting list, it is a key way for fake businesses to make money. Ask if you can get a deposit back if you find a kitten from another breeder. Be wary of the amount of the deposit. Many fake websites are asking for large deposits, around $500. That’s a lot of money to lay down if you are not 100% sure that the breeder is legitimate. Discuss the deposit issue with a breeder to feel comfortable with the legitimacy of the breeder. Some great Real Minuet Breeders do ask for a deposit to be on their waiting list but they have been authenticated as being legitimate breeders.

16. Shady methods of payment. If a website doesn’t accept a method of payment that carries a payment protection against fraud, avoid it like the plague. Most credit card payments that end up being fraud can be recouped from the credit card company. Debit cards most likely cannot. DO NOT send a payment through Friends and Family via PayPal. Money sent via Friends and Family in PayPal is not protected against fraud. I encountered one person who sent money through Zemo and they weren’t able to recover the lost funds. Wired money cannot be recovered, nor can money orders. A check might be able to be disputed, depending on the bank. There are several methods of payment that are available nowadays, but if a breeder doesn’t allow you to protect yourself against fraud, don’t deal with them.

17. Hidden fees. Many fraudulent pet breeders will get you on the hook with a kitten, then tell you that you need to pay more money for this, that, or the other thing. Many of the hidden fees are related to shipping costs or fake “certifications.”  Ask a  breeder what the full, up-front costs will be, and if so, get it in writing. It is expected that the buyer will pay for transportation costs to get the kitten, but this amount should be negotiated well ahead of time and set in stone. Fake businesses will state a price, then add more money later in order for you to get the kitten. Once you pay the additional cost, you will never get the kitten or hear from the breeder again.

18. Transportation service. Many fake businesses will offer a transportation service for an additional cost. Ask the “breeder” what transportation company they use, then verify the company as being a real business. I had someone who gave me the email of his transportation carrier and when I contacted the carrier to arrange transport for the kitten, I noticed the same verbiage used in the email from carrier and the individual perpetuating the fraud. It turned out that the con man was posing both as the individual and the transportation carrier. Make sure the transportation service offered by a “breeder” is real and call them to verify that they work with the “breeder.”

19. No application or a too simple application. A good breeder will require you to fill out an application for a kitten. This application should be more than your name and contact information. The application should inquire something about you and your household for the breeder to determine if you are a good fit for a kitten. Remember, a good breeder will determine the best home for their kittens, not just sell kittens indiscriminately. A good breeder might also interview you over the phone in lieu of the application. The point is to look for a breeder who wants to assure himself that you will be a good pet parent and is willing to give up a sale to the wrong person.

19. My secret identifier. There is one sure way for me to know a fraudulent business but I will not say what it is here. I don’t want those businesses to know their critical flaw and change it to make it harder for the public to identify them as fake. If after all these warnings are leaving you wondering still if the website is real or not, contact me with the website to see if this identifier is there.

20. Trust your instinct. If you have any apprehensions about a website being fake, trust your instincts. Don’t deal with them. This website has a list of Real Minuet Breeders who have been authenticated as producing genuine Minuet (Napoleon) kittens. They will not pretend to have kittens, take your money, and give you nothing in return. If none of these catteries have available kittens at the time, it is well worth it to wait. Contact multiple catteries to get on their waiting list. These cats are amazing creatures that will give you years of love and pleasure. We will also not list any cattery that is a kitty mill, backyard breeder, designer cat breeder, or broker.


Our Real Minuet Breeders have been authenticated through a series of personal knowledge of those breeders and submission of requested documents. The breeders on this website do not include all the real Minuet (Napoleon) breeders, but do include those who were willing to be authenticated through our rigorous process to ensure that they breed and offer real Minuets (Napoleons). To see our authentication process, click here.


Real Minuet Breeders do not pay to be on this website. Their acceptance on this site is purely based on legitimacy.


Should you have any questions or need additional advice, contact me at wolfpirateprop@aol.com.


Courtesy of Blueskies Cattery: PURRDELIS Sweet Sassparilla, Once in a Blue Moon, and Stardust

Warning Signs of a Fake Cattery

If you’re looking for a sweet, darling Minuet (Napoleon), read the following signs to avoid being scammed by fake websites hoping to get money from you. Also be wary of patronizing a kitty mill, backyard breeder, or a designer cat breeder.

Tiny Lion’s Pillow and Gabrielle Landesclaw

Remember: Minuets are also known as Napoleons. Therefore, you will see the two names joined together in honor of those who still call these cats by either name. Be aware that there is absolutely no difference in cats called Napoleons and cats referred to as Minuets. The two names are synonymous and breeders have their own preference of which name they use in reference to their cats.

Courtesy of Agathos Cattery

Grand Champions Shortnaps Romeo of Pawcitys

Note: A Minuet/Napoleon is only authentic if it was bred from a Munchkin to one of the Persian breed group (Persian, Himalayan, and Exotic Shorthair); or a Minuet (Napoleon) to one of the previous, or a Minuet (Napoleon) to a Minuet (Napoleon). Anyone presenting a kitten from a parentage different than those breeds just mentioned, such as a British Shorthair or other breed that mimics similar Persian features, is not selling a Minuet (Napoleon). CHECK PEDIGREES! A kitten that is not bred from the correct foundation breeds will not be able to register as a Minuet (Napoleon) in any cat association, no matter what that breeder says to the contrary.