Sphynx Hairless Cats Kittens
Due to the lack of hair Sphynx possess, oil, which would normally be absorbed by hair, tends to build up on their bodies. As a result, Sphynx cats do require weekly, monthly, to no bathing at all (depending on the individual cat). Some cats do stay cleaner than others. Bathing is a five-minute task easily accomplished since Sphynx kittens are accustomed to bathing at an early age. Some enjoy their baths and will purr while being lathered up. Often, they will jump in the tub or shower with you to play. We use Dove Cream Oil Body Wash and bath gloves on our cats. The bath gloves cut bathing time in half and help to gently exfoliate leaving their skin smooth sand soft. Care is taken not to get soap/water in their ears and eyes while bathing.
Also due to the lack of hair, Sphynx hairless cats’ ears tend to build up with a brown waxy substance and require weekly to monthly cleanings (again depending on the individual cat). We use OtiCalm ear cleaner. After putting several drops in each ear, massage the base of the ear and allow your Sphynx to shake his head (to loosen the debris). Carefully use Q-tips to remove the wax. Care has to be taken not to injure their ears with the Q-tips. Never go farther down than you can see. Ear cleaning also takes only a few minutes.
Sphynx hairless cats are a very lively, comical, and intelligent breed. They are extremely friendly and outgoing, always being in the mood to snuggle. Part monkey, child, and dog is probably the best way to describe them. They prefer to sleep under the covers next to their humans at night and bask in the sun during the daylight hours. They are not usually timid and aloof, as some domestic cats can be. Sphynx cats are not a one-person cat; they get along with every member of the family. There is never a dull moment when you have a Sphynx cat in the house to entertain you. Because of their extremely affectionate nature, they do best in homes with other pets. They do get along with different types of pets.
Sphynx hairless cats are indoor cats and should not be left outside unattended. As a general rule, Sphynx cats are comfortable when we would be comfortable [naked]. During the cold winter months, I provide my Sphynx hairless cats with a heated pet bed which can be found at Drs. Foster and Smith. Because Sphynx cats tend to burn more energy keeping warm, we use a high-quality food to maintain their supposed higher metabolisms. We feed and recommend Wellness, Nature’s Variety, and Science Diet Hairball food. We feed the hairball food for the added fibber.
A common misconception is that the Sphynx hairless cat has no hair at all, but in fact, this is not true! Some do have a fine down over their bodies that can be felt but not easily seen. The most hairless cats feel rubbery and sometimes even sticky. The most pleasant texture seems to be on those cats with fine, short hair covering their bodies. Most Sphynx hairless cats have slight hair on their nose and ears, while some have hair on their tails and feet. This hair is usually very fine and soft. Wrinkled skin is highly desirable, particularly around the muzzle, between the ears, and around the shoulders. They have warm, muscular bodies with Dumbo ears and captivating lemon-shaped eyes. Their chest is well rounded with a thick, muscular neck. Sphynx males are generally larger than Sphynx females. Adult females usually weigh between 6 and 9 pounds, while males are usually between 9 and 15 pounds; however, this can vary to some extent either way. Click HERE to see the TICA standard for the Sphynx breed.
The Sphynx appears to be a hairless cat, although it is not truly hairless. The skin should have the texture of chamois. It may be covered with very fine down, which is almost imperceptible to both the eye and touch. On the ears, muzzle, tail, feet, and scrotum, a short, soft, fine hair is allowed. Lack of coat makes the cat quite warm to the touch. Whiskers and eyebrows may be present, either whole or broken, or may be totally absent. The cat should not be small or dainty. Males may be up to 25 percent larger as long as proper proportions are maintained. The Sphynx is sweet-tempered; lively; intelligent; and above all, amenable to handling.
Overall small cat. Body that is too thin, frail-appearing, delicate, or fine-boned; too cubby or foreign. Lack of wrinkles on the head. Straight profile, narrow head. Nonamenable disposition. Significant amounts of hair above the ankle.
WITHHOLD ALL AWARDS:
Any indication of wavy hair or suggestion of the Devon Rex or Cornish Rex in molt and any evidence of debilitating, plucking, shaving or clipping or any other means of hair removal. Unable to handle.
Medium-sized, modified wedge with rounded contours, slightly longer than wide. Skull is slightly rounded with a rather flat forehead, prominent cheekbones, and a distinct whisker break.
Large, rounded lemon shape. Slanting to outer corner of ear. Slightly more than an eye width between eyes.
Very large, broad at base and open. Set upright, neither low set nor on top of the head. The interior is totally hairless. Slight amount of hair allowed on lower outside edges and on the back of the ear.
MUZZLE AND CHIN:
Strong rounded muzzle with distinct whisker break and firm chin.
Slight to moderate stop at bridge of nose.
Medium in length, rounded, and well-muscled. The neck arches from the shoulders to the base of the skull and is powerful, especially in males.
Medium in size and medium to medium long in length. The chest is broad and may tend toward barrel chested. The abdomen is well rounded, having the appearance of having eaten a large meal, but not fat.
Length in proportion with body with medium boning and firm musculature. Hind legs slightly longer than front. Front legs widely set. Females may have slightly finer boning.
Medium in size and oval shape with long, slender toes. The paw pads are thicker than in other breeds, giving the cat the appearance of walking on “air cushions”. The toes are very long, slender, and prominent.
Whippy and tapering from body to tip (rat-tailed). Length is in proportion to body. A lion tail (puff of hair on tip) acceptable.
Hard and muscular, not delicate.
Appears hairless. May be covered with short, fine down. May have puff of hair on tip of tail. Whiskers are sparse and short.
Chamois-like. A feeling of resistance may be felt when stroking the skin of some cats. The skin is very wrinkled in kittens. Adults should retain as many wrinkles as possible, especially on the head, although wrinkling should not be so pronounced that it affects the cat’s normal functions.
All colors of all divisions. White lockets and buttons accepted.
Hairless cats have spontaneously occurred in many places including the United States, Canada, Australia, and France. In 1902, Mr. Shinick in Albuquerque, New Mexico, acquired two hairless cats from local Pueblo Indians. These two cats were brother and sister, Nellie and Dick, and were never bred. In 1950, two hairless kittens were reportedly born of Siamese parents in Paris, France. On January 30, 1966, in Ontario, Canada, a normally coated domestic black and white female, Elizabeth, produced a hairless black male kitten named Prune.
Nellie and Dick
The beginning of the Sphynx breed, as we know it today, began in June of 1978 in Toronto, Canada, when a Siamese breeder, Shirley Smith, was called upon to rescue two abandoned kittens born of a domestic short hair female. One of these kittens was a domestic longhair female and the other a hairless black and white male, Bambi. Bambi’s story was told in the May 1985 issue of Cats Magazine. He was found on the streets of Toronto. By the time he was rescued by Shirley Smith, he was in pretty bad shape. His left eye had been punctured in three places and his genitalia were so badly mutilated that everything had to be removed. Bambi eventually ended up with Linda Birks of Aztec Cattery. He was the oldest Sphynx on record at the time, as he passed away in June of 1997 at the age of 19 due to chronic ulcerative colitis. Bambi never produced any kittens of his own, but he helped greatly to propel the Sphynx into the public eye with the Cats Magazine article.
Bambi’s mother later produced two hairless female kittens out of two different males in 1979 and 1980. These two girls, named Paloma and Punkie, were sent to Dr. Hugo Hernandez in Holland. Punkie was later bred to a white Devon Rex male, Curare van Jetrophin, which produced a litter of five kittens.
In 1975, a domestic short hair brown tabby female, Jezabelle, gave birth to a female hairless kitten named Epidermis on a farm owned by Milt and Ethelyn Pearson in Wadena, Minnesota. A year later, Jezabelle again gave birth to a female hairless kitten named Dermis. In 1981, the Pearsons reluctantly sold the two hairless girls to Kim Mueske of Z. Stardust Cattery.
Jezabelle and Epidermis
Shortly thereafter, Kim attempted to breed the girls with a blue-eyed white American Shorthair, CFA GRC Sailaway Willie. Epidermis and Dermis produced seven kittens between them, all normal-coated. After three years had passed, Kim again tried with an American Shorthair named Red. Epidermis produced two normal-coated male kittens. Upon the advice of Dr. Solveig Pflueger, she bred one of the males, Z. Stardust Sneezy, back to his mother and was rewarded with three hairless kittens. In 1986, Kim planned to have Epidermis spayed, but she had other ideas. Cantaur’s Hercules of Z. Stardust, a red spotted tabby Devon Rex who was also scheduled to be neutered, and Epidermis had one last fling resulting in a litter that produced the foundation queen, SGC Z. Stardust’s Winnie Rinkle of Rinkurl, OD, TICA’s first Outstanding Dam Sphynx. Winnie passed away in March of 2002 at the age of 16, after a long battle with breast cancer. She is prominent in many Sphynx pedigrees today. In 1989, Dermis passed away at the age of 13, and in 1991, Epidermis passed away at the age of 16.
Mrs. Georgiana Gattenby of Jen Jude Cattery, also in Minnesota, was working with hairless cats too. Her three foundation cats, Jen Jude King Tutt, Jen Jude Sheba, and Jen Jude Cleopatra, were acquired from Mrs. Pearson in the fall of 1978. On April 28, 1979, Jen Jude King Tutt and Jen Jude Sheba presented Mrs. Gattenby with her first hairless kitten, Jen Jude Different. Mrs. Gattenby sold her last two remaining cats, Jen Jude Yoda II and Jen Jude Girlie, to Brenda S. Pena in 1985 and 1986. Mrs. Gattenby was not in good health sadly and died shortly thereafter. After repeated attempts, Jen Jude Yoda II and Jen Jude Girlie produced a litter of kittens in 1988. Two of them, CH Brenda’s Bathsheba of Rinkurl and particularly QGC RW Brenda’s Nefertiti of Rinkurl, OD, can also be found in many Sphynx pedigrees today.
In 1986, Walt and Carol Richards of Britanya Cattery in San Antonio, Texas, bred their Devon Rex female Britanya’s Aida Lott to European International Grand Champion (IGC) Chnoem de Calecat, which produced a litter of four. These four, SGC Britanya’s Lady Godiva, QGC Britanya’s Lord E I’m Naked, OS, TGC Britanya’s Baroness Quizzit, and CH Britanya’s Gremlin of Petmark, were exhibited as kittens at the INCATS show in Anaheim, California, in July of 1986 where they created quite the sensation. SGC Britanya’s Lady Godiva went on to become TICA’s first Supreme Grand Champion Sphynx and TICA’s first International Best of Breed Sphynx, and QGC Britanya’s Lord E I’m Naked, OS, became TICA’s first Outstanding Sire Sphynx. Britanya cats figure quite prominently in many pedigrees of today’s Sphynx.
All colors and patterns, in any combination, found in felines are acceptable in the Sphynx with exception to any of the colors or patterns that are determined by the placement of color on the single shaft of hair. e.g. shaded, cameo, smoke, chinchilla, ticked or otherwise tipped hair shaft. Being a cat noted for its lack of hair, these descriptions would not apply to the Sphynx. Note: exposure to sun will intensify all colors.
WHITE Pure glistening white. Nose leather and paw pads: pink.
BLACK Black. One level tone from nose to tip of tail. Nose leather: black. Paw pads: black or brown.
Gigolo – F2 boy
BLUE Blue. One level tone from nose to tip of tail. Nose leather and paw pads: blue.
RED Deep, rich, clear, brilliant red, without markings. Lips and chin the same color as the skin. Nose leather and paw pads: brick red.
CREAM One level shade of buff cream, without markings. Nose leather and paw pads: pink.
CHOCOLATE Rich chestnut brown, even throughout. Nose leather: brown. Paw pads: brown or cinnamon.
LAVENDER Frosty-grey with a pinkish tone, even throughout. Nose leather and paw pads: lavender-pink.
FAWN Pale, pinkish fawn, even throughout. Nose leather and paw pads: pale fawn.
CINNAMON Cinnamon, even throughout. Nose leather and paw pads: cinnamon.
CLASSIC TABBY PATTERN
Markings clearly defined on legs and tail. Pattern tends to fade on hairless body. Legs evenly barred with bracelets coming up to meet the body markings. Tail evenly ringed. Several unbroken necklaces on neck and upper chest, the more the better. Markings seen on the skin. Frown lines on head form an intricate letter “M” Unbroken line runs back from outer corner of eye. Swirls on cheeks. Vertical lines over back of head extend to shoulder markings which are in the shape of a butterfly with both upper and lower wings distinctly outlined and marked with dots inside outline. Back markings consist of a vertical line down the spine from butterfly to tail with a vertical stripe paralleling it on each side, the three stripes well separated by stripes of the ground color. Large solid blotch on each side to be encircled by one or more unbroken rings. Side markings should be the same on both sides. Double vertical rows of buttons on chest and stomach.
SPOTTED TABBY PATTERN
Markings on the body to be spotted. The spots can be round, oblong, or rosette-shaped. Any of these are of equal merit but the spots, however shaped or placed, shall be distinct. Spots should not run together in a broken Mackerel pattern. A dorsal stripe runs the length of the body to the tip of the tail. The stripe is ideally composed of spots. The markings on the face and forehead shall be typically tabby markings. Underside of the body to have “vest buttons.” Legs and tail are barred. Markings clearly defined on legs and tail. Pattern tends to fade on hairless body.
MACKEREL TABBY PATTERN
Khemo – brown tabby
Markings clearly defined on legs and tail. Pattern tends to fade on hairless body. Legs evenly barred with narrow bracelets coming up to meet the body markings. Tail barred. Necklaces on neck and chest distinct, like so many chains. Head barred with an “M” on the forehead. Unbroken lines running back from the eyes. Lines running down the head to meet the shoulders. Spine lines run together to form a narrow saddle. Narrow pencillings run around body.
PATCHED TABBY PATTERN A patched tabby (torbie) is an established silver, brown, blue, red, cream, etc. tabby with patches of red, cream, lavender, fawn, etc. clearly defined on both the body and extremities; a blaze on the face is desirable.
SILVER TABBY Skin ground color, including lips and chin, pale clear silver. Markings dense black. Nose leather: brick red. Paw pads: black.
BROWN TABBY Skin ground color brilliant coppery brown. Markings dense black. Lips and chin the same shade as the rings around the eyes. Back of leg black from paw to heel. Nose leather: brick red. Paw pads: black or brown.
Khemo – brown tabby
BLUE TABBY Skin ground color, including lips and chin, pale bluish ivory. Markings a very deep blue affording a good contrast with skin ground color. Nose leather: old rose. Paw pads: rose.
RED TABBY Skin ground color red. Markings deep, rich red. Lips and chin red. Nose leather and paw pads: brick red.
CREAM TABBY Skin ground color, including lips and chin, very pale cream. Markings buff or cream sufficiently darker than the ground color to afford good contrast but remaining within the dilute color range. Nose leather and paw pads: pink.
CHOCOLATE (Chestnut) TABBY Skin ground color is warm fawn, markings are rich chestnut brown. Nose leather: chestnut, or pink rimmed with chestnut. Paw pads: cinnamon.
CHOCOLATE-SILVER TABBY Skin ground color, including lips and chin, is silver. Markings rich chestnut. Nose leather: chestnut or pink rimmed with chestnut. Paw pads: cinnamon.
CINNAMON TABBY Skin ground color, including lips and chin, a pale, warm honey, markings a dense cinnamon, affording a good contrast with skin ground color. Nose leather: cinnamon or coral rimmed with cinnamon. Paw pads: cinnamon.
CINNAMON-SILVER TABBY Skin ground color, including lips and chin, a pale glistening silver. Markings dense cinnamon. Nose leather: cinnamon. Paw pads: coral.
LAVENDER TABBY Skin ground color is pale lavender. Markings are a rich lavender, affording a good contrast with skin ground color. Nose leather: lavender, or pink rimmed with lavender. Paw pads: lavender-pink.
LAVENDER-SILVER TABBY Skin ground color, including lips and chin, a cold clear silver. Markings lavender. Nose leather: lavender or pink rimmed with lavender. Paw pads: lavender-pink.
FAWN TABBY Skin ground color, including lips and chin, pale ivory, markings dense fawn, affording good contrast with skin ground color. Nose leather and paw pads: pale fawn.
TORTOISESHELL Black mottled or patched with red and/or cream. Blaze on face desirable.
BLUE-CREAM Blue mottled or patched with cream. Blaze on face desirable.
CHOCOLATE (Chestnut) TORTOISESHELL Rich chestnut brown mottled or patched with red and/or cream. Blaze on face desirable.
CINNAMON TORTOISESHELL Cinnamon mottled or patched with red and/or cream. Blaze on face desirable.
LAVENDER-CREAM Lavender mottled or patched with cream. Blaze on face desirable.
FAWN-CREAM Fawn mottled or patched with cream. Blaze on face desirable.
CALICO White with unbrindled patches of black and red. White predominant on underparts.
VAN CALICO White with unbrindled patches of black and red confined to the extremities; head, tail, legs. One or two small patches of color on body allowable.
DILUTE CALICO White with unbrindled patches of blue and cream. White predominant on underparts.
DILUTE VAN CALICO White with unbrindled patches of blue and cream confined to the extremities; head, tail, legs. One or two small patches of color on body allowable.
BI-COLOR Solid color and white, tabby and white, tortoiseshell and white, pointed and white, any color and white, etc.
VAN BI-COLOR Solid color and white, tabby and white, tortoiseshell and white, etc., with color confined to the extremities; head, tail, and legs. One or two small patches on body allowable.
FAWN-CREAM CALICO, LAVENDER-CREAM CALICO, CINNAMON-CREAM CALICO
As for calico above, with appropriate marking color. FAWN-CREAM VAN CALICO, LAVENDER-CREAM VAN CALICO, CINNAMON-CREAM VAN CALICO:: as for van calico above, with appropriate marking color.
POINTED PATTERN Point restricted colors show little or no color contrast between body and points in the mature Sphynx. Although born very light in color, the pointed Sphynx will darken and appear solid in color as an adult. Eye color: vivid blue. Nose leather and paw pads: appropriate to coat color. The pointed pattern may be combined with ANY other pattern (except mink) and ANY colors, e.g. lilac-silver lynx point and seal-tortie point with white (shown in the Bi-Color Class).
Seal Point and White
MINK PATTERN Point restricted colors show little or no color differentiation between body and points in the mature Sphynx. Although born very light in color, the mink Sphynx will darken and appear solid in color as an adult. Eye color: aqua. Nose leather and paw pads: appropriate to coat color. The mink pattern may be combined with ANY other pattern (except pointed) and ANY colors, e.g. natural mink, blue mink, champagne mink, platinum mink, natural tabby mink, blue-cream, tortie mink and white (shown in Bi-Color Class).
Cream Mink and White
The mature specimen should be a pale, silvery gray without shadings, barring or markings of any kind. Nose leather and paw pads: lavender-pink. OSC (Other Sphynx Colors): any other color or pattern. Cats with no more than a locket and/or button do not qualify for this class, such cats shall be judged in the color class of their basic color with no penalty for such locket and/or button. Examples: any color with one, two, three, or four white feet. All point restricted colors such as seal point, chocolate point, natural mink, blue mink, sable, champagne, platinum, etc.
The mature specimen should be a warm honey beige without shadings, barring, or markings of any kind. Nose leather: light, warm brown. Paw pads: warm, pinkish tan.
The mature specimen is a rich, warm, sable brown without shadings, barring, or markings of any kind. (Kittens are often lighter in color.) Nose leather and paw pads: brown.