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CFA Pedigreed Breed: Sphynx

In 1966, a domestic cat gave birth to a hairless kitten in Toronto, later discovered to be a natural mutation. And so the Sphynx cat, as we know it today, came into existence. Cat breeders in Europe and North America have bred the Sphynx to normal-coated cats and then back to hairless for more than 30 years. The purpose of these selective breedings was to create a genetically sound cat with a large gene pool and hybrid vigor. This is a very robust breed with few health or genetic problems.

The Sphynx is not always totally hairless; there can be a fine down on the body, which makes the cat feel like a warm peach. All colors and patterns are possible and may be presented at any stage of maturity. The color is seen in the pigment of the skin and the few hairs that they do have.

Because of the lack of hair that would normally absorb body oils, the Sphynx needs periodic bathing and ear cleaning. This is not a difficult task with a cat that has been acclimated from kittenhood with bathing and grooming proper for the Sphynx. Some people who suffer from cat allergies can tolerate living with Sphynx cats. However, depending on the type and severity of the individual's allergic reactions, there are still people who cannot live with this breed.

Sphynx are extremely inquisitive and love to be the center of attention. They perform silly antics for your entertainment and are sometimes downright clumsy ... on purpose, it seems. They prefer human attention but enjoy the company of dogs and other cats. They have an abundance of energy and mischief and are always with you, on you, or showing off for you. "Love mooch" is the perfect term for these amazing cats.

Cat Fanciers' Association, Inc. (c) 2011