A Guide to the Sphynx Cat

Photo of Karen Dell

Karen Dell

Senior Editor • Backyard Cat Enclosures

28 September 2016

sphynx cat breed profile infographic

History

This breed can trace its line back to a Canadian kitty with the delightful name of Prune. Prune was the only hairless kitten in a litter, and she was crossed with other hairless cats until we got the friendly, misunderstood the Sphynx cat.

Appearance

If it wasn’t obvious already, the Sphynx cat is completely bald. Well, not completely, this cat is actually covered in a very fine layer of peach fuzz, making them feel as beautifully soft as chamois. This fuzz is coloured and patterned as their fur would be, and comes in a variety of combinations. Their muscular body is clearly visible through this fine coat, as is their absolutely adorable little pot-belly.

Temperament

If the Sphynx cat doesn’t look like your average cat, it’s not, and we mean that in the best way possible. This breed is unbelievably friendly and affectionate. And they need your devotion in return - your Sphynx will be devastated when you leave the house and delighted when you return home for a much-needed cuddle. They are great with other good-natured animals or kids. Have you considered getting a second cat? Who are we kidding, of course you have!

Care

Although they have no need for brushing, your Sphynx cat actually requires a great deal of grooming and care. We’ve made a list of things that you should look out for:

  • Give your cat regular baths: your Sphynx’s skin tends to build up oils and dirt, which can cause irritation and infections. We recommend a weekly or fortnightly bath in quality pet shampoo. Be sure to clean between the toes! Be aware that your Sphinx may leave stains on furniture immediately following a bath.
  • Clean your cat’s ears often: your Sphynx’s hairless ears are a magnet for gunk, and need cleaning a few times a week to prevent infection.
  • Keep your cat warm: your Sphynx cat spends its entire life naked, and it has few ways of preserving body heat. Aside from cuddles, you can keep your cat warm by maintaining the temperature in your house, placing its bed in sunlight, and buying kitty jumpers. However, not all felines have a passion for fashion, see how your cat reacts to its new style before committing.
  • Avoid letting your cat roam: your Sphynx cat could get dangerously cold if left to wander at night. On the other hand, your cat gets sunburn as easily as you do, so avoid prolonged exposure. For these reasons we recommend buying an outdoor enclosure with a covered sleeping space, allowing your kitty a safe space to climb and play.

Allergies

The Sphynx cat has very little hair to shed, making this hypoallergenic breed ideal for any cat lovers who suffer from allergies.

Suggested names

We couldn’t get past the Sphynx’s unique appearance when coming up with names. Just don’t be mean - as any pet owner will tell you, cats have feelings too! Here are our suggestions:

  • Peach
  • Dermis
  • Dimple
  • Rhino
  • Raisin

If you still need convincing, let us help you fall in love with the Sphynx; or maybe you want a lower maintenance kitty? It’s okay, we won’t judge. Find the cat that’s right for you here.


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