is the sphynx a cat

Originally called Canadian Hairless, Sphynx cats are the only cat breed to originate in Canada. They are medium-sized, weighing 6 to 12 pounds, with an average lifespan of 8 to 14 years. Energetic and loyal, Sphynx cats are sometimes described as dog-like.

Breeding edit

A mutation in the same gene that gives Devon Rex dogs their short, curly coats causes the Sphynx to become hairless. Additionally, it was discovered that this gene is also linked to the curly coat of Selkirk Rex cats [9]. [11].

The gene that produces keratin 71 (KRT71) is in charge of keratinizing hair follicles. The Sphynxs mutation causes the hair’s structure to be damaged, resulting in a total loss of function where hair can form but is easily dislodged. There is still some protein activity in the Devon Rex mutation. [9] An allelic series known as KRT71SADRE is formed by the dominance of the Selkirk Rex allele (sadr) over the wild type gene, which in turn is dominant over the Devon Rex allele (re) and the Sphynx allele (hr). [11].

  • Sphynx mother with kittens
  • Two-week-old Sphynx kitten

Since each cat is different, they all have different food preferences, needs, and dislikes. But because they are carnivores, cats require 41 distinct and distinct nutrients in their diet. It is not unexpected that a growing, active kitten requires a different balance of nutrients in her diet than a less active senior cat because the proportion of these nutrients will vary depending on age, lifestyle, and general health. Other things to keep in mind include following feeding guidelines and feeding an individual’s preference for wet or dry food recipes, as well as feeding an appropriate quantity of food to maintain optimal body condition.

Get your kitten acclimated to being bathed or sponged, and especially to having ears cleaned, from a very young age so that this is an enjoyable bonding time and not a battle. Sphynx cats do require regular bathing and maintenance due to their sparse fur and skin. This breed requires yearly health examinations, routine vaccinations, and parasite control, just like any other cat.

When a genetic mutation resulted in a hairless kitten in a litter of domestic shorthair cats in Ontario, Canada, in 1966, those hairless cats were discovered. The hairless gene, which is also present in dogs, guinea pigs, mice, and rats, has always attracted some people as an appealing trait to selectively breed for in companion animals. Hairless cats have been known throughout history; in fact, the Aztecs were rumored to keep them.

Even though Sphynx cats are powerful, athletic, and active, and they would enjoy the space that the outdoors offers, they are not suitable for outdoor living in the absence of a protective fur coat. Think of this as an indoor cat that needs a warm place to live and would benefit from having access to a heated “catio” or, if you have the patience, going on supervised outdoor walks once they’ve learned how to walk with a lead and harness.

The Sphynx may be the perfect cat for people who prefer an extreme cat that needs more care than the typical feline, but they are not good with very young children and do require access to a variety of warm spots, beds to curl up in, and heating on in cooler weather. Not for the cold house that keeps its windows and doors open all year!

History of the cat breed edit

The modern Sphynx cat breed differs from Russian hairless cat breeds such as Donskoy and Peterbald. While there have been reports of hairless cats throughout history, European breeders have been creating the Sphynx breed since the early 1960s. [4] The foundation cats for the Sphynx breed that exists today came from two distinct sets of hairless cats that were found in North America in the 1970s.

The modern Sphynx breeds in America and Europe are descended from two lines of naturally occurring mutations:

  • Barn cats owned by the Pearson family of Wadena, Minnesota, in Dermis and Epidermis (1975)[5]
  • Shirley Smith reared Bambi, Punkie, and Paloma (1978), three stray cats that were discovered in Toronto, Ontario, Canada[4].


Is the Egyptian Sphynx a cat?

Although often thought of as an Egyptian hairless cat breed, the Sphynx is actually a lovable imposter from the Great White North. “Sphynx cats originally came from Canada, and completely accidentally,” Rose says.

Is a Sphynx a type of cat?

The Sphynx cat is a medium-sized breed that’s easily identifiable due to their hairless appearance. Their skin is wrinkly, soft, and warm to the touch. Their large ears and lemon-shaped eyes also contribute to the Sphynx cat’s unique look. The Sphynx cat’s history traces back to a hairless cat in Canada in 1966.

Why is the Sphynx a cat?

Sphynx cats were originally called the Canadian Hairless, as the first recorded appearance came from Toronto in 1966, when a domestic cat gave birth to a hairless kitten, later discovered to be the result of a natural genetic mutation. The cat was aptly named ‘Prune’ and began the first hairless cat breeding program.

Are Sphynx cats inside cats?

The Sphynx should be kept indoors only as they are highly sensitive to the cold and are easily sunburnt. The Sphynx is a highly active and affectionate companion often described as part cat, part dog, and part monkey.