The Sphynx Cat

The bald Sphynx captures the imagination of many cat lovers. Although this unique breed is still relatively rare, owners' enthusiastic praise leads to growing interest and gradually increases the popularity of the Sphynx.

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Breed History

The gene of hairlessness has appeared as a spontaneous mutation several times during the past century, in some well-documented occurrences in Europe, Australia and America. The most famous early hairless cats are probably the two cats owned by a New Mexico resident that has come to be known as the "Hairless Mexican".

Most sources agree that the first breeding program for hairless cats was initiated in Canada in 1966 when a domestic shorthaired cat produced a hairless kitten. These early cats were at first called "The Canadian Hairless", "Moonstone Cats" and "Canadian Sphynx" - with time, "Sphynx" became the official name.

Breeding programs in the United States and the Netherlands were based on this original line. They have also continued, however, to include hairless cats that appeared spontaneously among domestic cats. The Cat Fanciers Association (CFA) accepted this unusual-looking breed for registration and competition in the Miscellaneous Class in February 1998.

Breed Description

The Sphynx's most striking feature is his coat, or rather its lack of one. Although they appear to be totally naked, these cats usually have fine down all over their bodies, especially on the paws, tail and face. Their skin is said to feel like warm chamois or the skin of a peach.

The unique look does not end there. Sphynx cats have wrinkled skin, especially around their head and neck, and especially large ears. These, along with large and expressive lemon-shaped eyes, create the exceptional alien look that is second to no other cat.

Sphynx cats are extremely affectionate and need a lot of human attention. They usually get along fairly well with other cats and dogs.

These naked cats crave warmth and are often found in warm places or even wrapped around their favorite human's shoulders.

Special Needs

The lack of fur does not make the Sphynx a low-maintenance cat. The skin of the cat still secrets oils to nourish the non-existent coat and frequent baths are essential. Sphynxes also need to be kept in a warm environment. If living in a cold climate, adequate heating is required. Owners of a Sphynx cat should receive detailed guidance from the breeder of their cat and follow the advice with great care.

The Sphynx Cat and Allergies

Contrary to what some people believe, Sphynxes are not hypoallergenic. These cats still produce the protein to which allergic people react and shed it in their saliva and dander. The lack of hair may help to reduce the reaction in some people, but others are just as allergic to Sphynxes as to other cats.


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6 comments on “The Sphynx Cat

Michael Delmonico July 28, 2021
Absolutely Gorgeous Kittens with Big blue eyes and amazing Coloring, they are full of personality already. Notable for its hairless coat, the sphynx is also a friendly, loving, and energetic show-off who craves human attention. In contrast to her regal looks and serious expression, the sphynx is an acrobatic clown who doesn’t take herself too seriously. She loves to entertain and delight her humans and will follow you around the house like a puppy.
Anonymous July 28, 2021
Royalty Sphynx Cats: It’s a good thing that the Sphynx kittens for sale loves attention because he draws it wherever he goes.
kittydesires August 17, 2017
Very awesome article on Sphynx cats, very informative. I myself have also written an article on how to care for a Sphynx cat that goes very well with this article:
cbenwell February 6, 2015
I have a female Sphynix cat who is almost 3 years old.  She is an incredibly affectionate and smart cat.  She really likes human touch and is very affectionate.  She walks on a lease, comes outside when she is called, travels well in the car without the need to be in a cage, takes baths on her own (she will hope in once I get out or sometimes hop in the bath when I am in it; allows her nails to be clipped and is entirely toilet trained.  Now toilet training her  took a bit of time but boy has it payed off.  No litter to clean, no smells.  She has not had a problem generalizing the behavior either.  When we travel with her she quickly adapts to different environments.   We just show her the toilet when we take her to a new place and away she goes.  And you may not believe this, but we took her on the sail boat with us and she even was able to manage going on the toilet in those conditions (moving boat).  She is one talented cat.  And to think I used to be a dog person.
christineski March 9, 2014
Thank you to the Cat sight members for advice about my Dam moving her kittens. I placed her in the cattery a week before she was due and I'm happy to report there are 6 healthy kittens at 2 weeks! Two odd eyed!
christineski December 21, 2013
I am a sphynx breeder, and can attest to the rarity of the breed. I've had sphynx for past 13 years, and acquired my current breeding pair from Russia, to the tag of $7,000. They are genetically screened and papered to be free of the normal USA health defects such as HCM. My odd eyed boy and red and white lineage girl have such amazing genetics. Breeding is tough....It's so hard to keep the mommy kitten from puncturing the skin of the babies as they have no hair. I'm losing many babies within the first week. Heartbreaking.

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