Hairless cats are a novelty to some people, but to others, they are simply their beloved pets. The bald appearance is a unique feature that sets them apart from other breeds that sport a full and thick coat of fur.
One of the most popular hairless breeds is the Sphynx. Others include the bambino, donskoy, elf cat, peterbald, and Ukrainian Levkoy. If you’re not currently the owner of one of these amazing cat breeds, here are twenty interesting facts about them.
1. They are stunning in appearance
Not everyone would agree with this statement, but bear with us for a moment. Most people are used to a fluffy cat, but once you get used to the striking difference of a hairless cat, they really are quite beautiful.
The lack of fur allows you to see their form without distraction of the interfering fur coat. It begins with the large eyes that are housed within a wrinkly brow and forehead. Some hairless breeds have unique markings on their body, making them interesting to look at.
It really is fascinating to see what a cat really looks like under their coats. The Sphynx breed often does not have eyelashes or whiskers, giving them a clean shaven appearance, but the other breeds do.
Those who do have whiskers and eyelashes are just as lovely because it enhances the beauty of their feline facial features with high cheekbones and huge eyes. If you give them a chance and have an open mind, you too will see the redemptive qualities in the appearance of a hairless cat.
2. Naked cats make a lot of noise
In general, all breeds of hairless cats are highly vocal. They love to talk and will even carry on a conversation with you if they’re feeling argumentative or chatty at the time. You won’t need to worry about keeping the food and water dish full because your hairless cat will let you know when it’s time for a refill. If you dare to scold them about a misdeed, be prepared for an argument.
They are known for back talking when you get after them for something that they’ve done. You can tell what kind of mood that your hairless cat is in simply by the tone of its voice. This gives the breed an almost human-like quality.
Although the vocals of this cat can become a bit annoying, it is more entertaining than anything. Their fondness of conversation makes them the perfect choice for a person who lives by themselves, because you’ll never be lonely when you own a hairless cat, particularly the Sphynx variety.
3. They’ll eat you out of house and home
Hairless cats are known for their ravenous appetites, and if you don’t believe it, just ask anyone who owns one. It’s a good idea to write this expense into your regular food budget, especially if you own a pair of them.
It can be expensive, particularly when you go with the recommended better cat food formulas, but it is well worth the cost to have a healthy and happy cat. The reason that hairless cats have such a healthy appetite is thanks to their fast metabolism.
There will be no worries about your cat becoming overweight because there is no fur coat to hide chubbiness. It’s not usually a problem, but if you notice that your cat is getting a little pudgy, you can just cut back a little on the portions, but be prepared to hear about it.
4. Plan on buying a lot of kitty litter
It stands to reason that a cat who eats a lot is going to go through a lot of kitty litter as well. Hairless cats should always have a litter box at their disposal. While some cat owners prefer to train their cats to toilet outside, it’s not recommended for the hairless variety.
The reason for this is that your cat does not have enough hair to keep it warm in colder weather or on cool evenings. This may discourage them from going outside to take care off their business.
The result will either be a cat who holds it for an unhealthy amount of time, messes in the house, or your kitty may catch a chill and have difficulty warming up again.
5. Hairless cats need regular baths
It may seem like a hairless cat would be easier to groom because of the lack of fur. While it’s true that they won’t be shedding fur all over the place, they can still get dirty and smelly. Hairless cats are a far cry from maintenance free.
Be prepared to perform a variety of maintenance tasks to keep your hairless clean and well-groomed. Their regular bathing routine should consist of a weekly bathing schedule to remove thee oily residue that collects on their skin. It can get nasty if you let it go, and the oils that are produced by the cat’s skin will get on your upholstery, clothing and just about everything else that they come in contact with.
You’ll also need to trim their nails and clean their ears. Some hairless breeds do a fair job of self-maintenance, but not all of them do, and it’s difficult for the cat to reach every area that needs to be cleaned, which is pretty much every inch of their bodies. If you neglect the weekly bath, you’re likely to find a nasty grease stripe in your bedding.
6. Hairless cats can clear a room
It would be negligence to avoid informing the world about the potency of hairless cats when they are flatulent. They have been known to drive entire families from a room, including other pets, and occasionally, electing to move out themselves.
It’s hard to describe the aroma so we won’t try, just be forewarned that it could make your eyes water and your stomach turn. Certain cat food formulas may not agree with the gentle digestive system of this hearty eating cat, so it’s best to find a brand that works and stick with it.
Table scraps are the worsts culprits for inducing gas attacks, so be careful about what you feed your hairless, and don’t say we didn’t warn you.
7. Hairless cats need company
Hairless cat breeds are all dependent on their owners because of their obvious disadvantage. Temperamentally, they tend to be clingy, and desire the company of humans and other pets.
Because of all the attention that they get during their maintenance and care regimens, they are used to physical contact and they have a strong craving for this. It’s not good to leave them alone for long periods of time.
This kind of cat needs company or it may become lonely and depressed. If you have a job that keeps you away for hours during the day, then it’s strongly recommended that you have another household pet that gets along well with your cat so he will have companionship throughout the day.
8. Your hairless cat is definitely an indoor pet
There are several reasons why a hairless cat should be an indoor pet. The first, and most obvious is because of the lack of a protective coating of fur. These cats are particularly susceptible to the cold, and have far less protection from chilly temperatures and cold winds.
They lose body heat rapidly and can develop hypothermia very quickly. This isn’t the only danger though. They are also more injury prone. Other animals can more easily inflict damage to their bodies because they don’t have a coat to protect them from sharp teeth or claws and their sensitive skin is easily damaged in attacks, rough play, or even when your cat is just exploring the environment and crawling through shrubs and bushes.
Hairless cats are safer when kept indoors. This doesn’t mean that you can’t take them out for a daily outdoor excursion, it just means that extra care is required when they are outside, and you should bring them indoors when there is a chill in the air.
9. You will have a second shadow
Hairless cat breeds, the Sphynx in particular, will follow you wherever you go in the house or outside. This is partly because they are clingy and enjoy being near you. In addition to this, they are curious and also nosy.
They like to be in the know at all times. Don’t be surprised if your cat follows you into the bathroom to see what you are doing. It will even wait for you outside of the door if you refuse admission into the restroom with you. Be prepared to hear all about it if you take too long though.
This highly vocal cat will sit outside of the door and pester you until you come out and give him some attention. When you’re outside gardening, your cat will check out what you’re doing, then lie in the middle of your garden space, near you of course, and help you with pulling weeds, or just lie there and get in the way.
You’ll need to be mindful of where you walk because your cat is a foot pet that can surprises you at any time. While it’s nice to be loved, it can also become a tripping hazard.
10. Your cat figures things out
One of the most intriguing things about this breed of cat is that they are highly intelligent and inquisitive. They like to know how things work, and they’re pretty good at figuring things out. Many hairless cats have been known to turn door handles and open them.
If you have a sturdy and heavy door knob, you’re probably safe, but some of the lighter and easier to turn bar varieties are perfect for a hairless, because it’s easy to open them with the touch of a paw. If you leave clothing hanging out of a drawer, they are known for pulling until the drawer is open. This happens most often when they are left alone and become bored.
It’s very important to keep all electrical cords out of the reach of your highly inquisitive cat because if he’s bored, he’s apt to view it as a string to play with. All cats are playful and curious, but these, perhaps, just a little more than most others. It’s a good idea to “cat-proof” your home, much in the same way that you would child proof if you have little ones afoot.
One of the best ways to prevent your cat from investigating dangerous things in the home is to provide him with a good variety of toys that he finds entertaining. If he’s kept busy, he won’t be as likely to get into things that could potentially harm him.
11. They are lap cats
Hairless cats love to sit on your lap and cuddle with you. Because of the lack of hair, they like to be on your lap for the body heat as well as the attention that they get. They are affectionate and loving cats that crave attention.
They are big time attention seekers, but they are as willing to give love back as they are to receive it. In addition to jumping into the easy chair with you, hairless cats will also join you in bed if you allow it.
If it’s warm in the house, the cat may be content to curl up at the bottom of the bed near your feet, but if it’s chilly, he’ll burrow deeply under the covers and fall asleep nestled securely against some part of your body.
If you are the owner of a hairless cat, you will be unconditionally loved. This makes them a popular choice for people who live alone and who are in need of a companion to prevent loneliness.
12. They are heat seekers
Hairless cats have a need to seek out warmth. Their bodies don’t retain heat as well as most other types of cats so they do the next best thing. If the cat disappears and you don’t see him anywhere, the best places to look are near any available heat sources.
They love to lie in front of fireplaces, heaters, air vents, in laundry rooms atop the dryer, and in the middle of a fresh pile of laundry that is still warm from the dryer. They will also curl up with the family dog or another pet to soak up any extra body heat that is generated.
These cats are also big time burrowers, and it’s highly likely that you’ll find them under covers in somebody’s bed. It’s a good idea to provide them with a bed that is soft and warm with a few kitty blankets of their own to climb into.
13. Their skin needs extra care
Hairless cats have extremely sensitive skin. Although they do produce oils, winter weather and dry heat sources can take their toll on your cat’s skin. In addition to regular bathing, some cats require a coating of lotion if the skin becomes dry or flaky.
This isn’t a lot different than many humans during the winter months. It’s also important to keep your cat out of strong sunlight for extended periods of time because they do sunburn more easily than other cats.
This doesn’t mean that you need to coat him in sunscreen every time he goes outside, but don’t leave him in bright sunlight for hours at a time. Because of the sensitivity of their skin, hairless cats are more prone to developing skin conditions and irritations.
If your cat’s skin becomes highly irritated or infected it’s best to consult with a veterinarian for the best course of treatment. Cats can have allergies to foods and environmental allergens as easily as people do.
If your cat’s skin breaks out it could be a result of an allergy to a type of food that he is eating or something that their skin has come into contact with.
14. They do have some hair
Contrary to popular belief, hairless cats are not entirely hairless, they just look like they are. There is actually a very thin layer off fuzzy down that covers their bodies. When you touch them, you can barely feel it and it doesn’t have the same texture as regular hair, it’s more like peach fuzz.
Their skin has the feel of chamois leather or suede. It is soft and warm, and wrinkly in spots. The term hairless is a bit deceiving because they do have a thin layer, it’s just so light that you can’t really see it.
15. They are not completely hypoallergenic
Many people believe that because hairless cats have a lack of fur, they are 100% hypoallergenic. This is a myth. People who have allergies to cats won’t be solving the problem by adopting a hairless version. It isn’t the hair that causes the problem.
The compounds that cause allergic reactions in most people is Fel d1, which is a protein that is found in the saliva of cats. Hairless produce this protein and they do a fair amount of self-grooming, so the saliva is present on the skin, it dries and becomes airborne.
16. Their bodies are warmer than other cats
Hairless cats are the nudists of the cat universes. You may think that they would be cooler than other cats because they don’t have insulation to keep the heat in, but the truth of the matter is s that they are actually about four degrees warmer than most other breeds.
This is because hairless cats eat between two and two and a half times more food daily, than other cats do. Their unique metabolism processes the excess food and converts it to body heat to keep them warmer. Part of the reason for their higher body temperature could also be from their constant burrowing and seeking out heat sources.
17. Most hairless breeds come from cold climates
You would naturally assume that a hairless cat breed would originate from a hot climate, but this isn’t the case. Hairless are created cat breeds. For example, the Sphynx, does not come from Egypt, but rather, from Canada.
It was created in 1966 by breeding cats with a mutant gene that produced the first hairless kittens ever. Because of their exotic appearance, they were named Sphynx to pay homage to the statues found in Egypt.
There were a few examples of kittens with these mutant genes being born in Ontario and in the state of Minnesota in the United States, both extremely cold climates. Efforts to create a new hairless breed are what brought us the Sphynx cats.
Another cat breed that closely resembles the Sphynx is the Donskoy. This cat is a completely separate breed that originates from the country of Russia.
Although it’s a bit complicated, the Donskoy is hairless because of a dominant gene, while the Sphynx is hairless because of a recessive gene. Both breeds have their origins in regions where extremely cold temperatures are pervasive.
18. They are heart stealers
Hairless cats may take a bit of getting used to because of their different looking appearance, but once you become acquainted with them, their personalities will win you over. They are sweet and loving cats who are highly affectionate attention seekers.
Their behaviors are so endearing that it doesn’t take long for them to absolutely steal your heart. It’s easy to become attached to them quickly because they make sure that they stick close by your side.
They will carry on a conversation with you and even argue. They truly are beautiful with their exotic features. Add their playfulness and desire to please to the mix and you have one amazing companion.
19. Each has its own color and pattern
You don’t need a big fluffy coat to have a cool color and pattern. Hairless cats have pigmented skin that is every bit as unique as their furry counterparts. In fact, it may be even more interesting. Hairless cats also come in tabby patterns with the unique swirls and chevrons, as well as the tortoise shell.
20. Hairless cats make good therapy cats
These cats are very useful as therapy cats. They are highly social creatures who love to interact with adults, children and other pets. Hairless cats offer quaint little conversations and serve as wonderful distractions for people who have worries on their minds. They love to give and receive attention and affection and have the ability to entertain and brighten anyone’s day.
You can also read:
- Are Siamese Cats Hypoallergenic?
- The 20 Most Expensive Cat Breeds in the World
- 12 Hairless Cat Myths Solved
- The Hairless Munchkin Cat: A Funny Looking But Lovable Cat
- How Many Hairless Cat Breeds are There?