Maybe you don’t recognize the name, but we at IndulgeYourPet are sure you’ve probably seen a picture of one of these nifty little guys! The problem is that after someone sees a picture of a Sphynx cat, they will either say…
“OMG, what’s wrong with that poor little animal?”
Or they’re going to say…
“OMG, what is that thing? And how can I make it on my own!”
Now, we here at IndulgeYourPet belong to the latter group of folks absolutely in love with this cat breed. This is why we wanted to take a moment and discuss what it’s actually like to own one of these fantastic little creatures.
Just because you may be as fascinated by them as we are doesn’t mean that they’re going to be a good “fit” for you, or viscera, you may not be a good “fit” for them! So, without further ado, let’s dive right in.
Sphynx Cat Breed Fast Facts
Country of Origin: Canada
Weight: 8 to 10 pounds
Eyes: Large and round
Shape of Head: Wedge-shaped
Lifespan: 13 to 15 years
Origin of the Sphynx cat
While it is certainly understandable why one would think that the origin of the Sphynx cat must date back to some “ancient” pre-historic time in Egypt, the truth is, we only need to look back to the mid-1970s to “unearth’ the origin of the Sphynx cat breed. You see, in 1975 in Wadena, Minnesota (of all places), a stray farm cat delivered two hairless kittens, ultimately leading to the Sphynx breed’s development.
The origins of the Sphynx cat breed can be traced back to these two little kittens; the species didn’t become established until a few years later when some of these original Sphynx cats created a colony of strays living on the streets of Toronto, Canada. This was when a few of these strays were brought to breeders in the Netherlands who were trying to develop a “hairless” cat breed and were then cross-bred with the Devon Rex cat breed, creating what we now know and love.
Today, the American Cat Fanciers Association, the Cat Fanciers Association, and The International Cat Association recognized the Sphynx cat breed with “credit” for the species going to Canada!
The Sphynx cat is bald—though their toes, ears, and tail may have a bit of fur on them. They’re also wrinkled and have a potbelly. Still not sure what they look like? That’s easy: close your eyes and think of a bald sixty-year-old man passionate about buffalo wings! But don’t be fooled by their “appearance” because despite what their bodies might look like, these guys are pretty muscular little cats and are accomplished little acrobats when needed.
Like their bodies…
Sphynx cats have pretty muscular legs with long toes, oval paws, and skinny tails. Now, are their tails any lighter than “normal” cats? That we don’t know, but since these guys are hairless, we can tell you that their seats look pretty. But for what they lack in “tail girth,” they make up for it when you look at their large eyes, ears, and long muzzle.
It may seem weird talking about hairless cats coloring, but we should point out that these guys do come in several different colors, including:
- Or chocolate.
They also come in numerous patterns such as tabby, tortoiseshell, bicolor, calico, mink, or pointed.
Personality and Temperament
The Sphynx is one of the most affectionate cats out there, much to contrary belief. They’re very friendly, and they love to cuddle. They’ll sit in your lap as you watch a movie or lay beside you while you nap. (Mostly to steal your warmth.) That said, it’s important to note that the Sphynx cat dislikes being left alone. So, if you get a Sphynx, it’s best to have another pet or a pet sitter to take care of them so that they’re entertained while you’re at work.
If you have kids at home, you’ll probably not have to worry about that because the Sphynx cat is excellent with kids, and kids love playing with these guys! Sometimes, it won’t matter who’s in the house because these guys love people. They love to be around people, whether you, a family member, or a friend. They’ll follow you around the house and constantly call for your attention.
The Sphynx will also…
Welcome anyone strange into your home, and make sure they feel comfortable. They’re not shy, and be sure to keep your guests entertained. When they’re not doing that, they’re probably exploring your home to see what else they can find. They’re curious cats filled with energy, so expect to find them climbing bookcases and chasing flies. You can also find them playing with toys that make them think because they love to be challenged.
But there are…
We should mention a few things about the Sphynx breed that could prevent you from wanting to adopt one. First, even though they don’t have fur, they will still require weekly grooming/sponge baths to help rinse off some of the natural skin “grease” that can develop on them. We don’t want to imply that these are “greasy” cats; imagine how you would feel if you couldn’t shower for a week!
Also, these guys are just walking around through life “naked.” This means that they can often get cold depending on the weather. They can also get sunburned! So, if you decide to adopt a Sphynx cat, we recommend keeping them indoors or, at the very least, limiting their time outside.
Potential Health Concerns
Sphynx cats are generally healthy, but they have some diseases that may arise. The first disease that they have a possibility of developing is heart disease. This heart disease is called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). Sadly, there is no cure for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, but specific treatments can help a cat because it decreases the chances of it experiencing particular symptoms. These symptoms could be rapid breathing, open-mouth breathing, and lethargy.
The second thing…
They’re prone to urticaria pigmentosa. This is a skin disease that causes crusty sores to show up in the body. It’s a common genetic disease among all cats, just like HCM. HCM is not hereditary, but urticaria pigmentosa is. Also, because of their lack of fur, they may be prone to skin cancer if exposed to sunlight for hours daily.
Which is why…
If you are seriously considering adopting a Sphynx cat, we would recommend that you take a moment and consider possibly purchasing a pet insurance policy for your little guy as well. Because while your Norwegian kitten will probably grow up to live a long and healthy life, you never know. Accidents and sicknesses happen all the time, and having a pet insurance policy that would help you manage the cost of care is often a great thing to have in place.
Now, will a pet insurance policy be a “good” fit for everyone?
No, probably not. But until you know what they will and won’t cover and what it would cost for you to be able to purchase such a policy, how will you know if getting one isn’t “right” for you?
This is why…
We here at IndulgeYourPet have written our Best Pet Insurance Companies article so that you can get a “basic” understanding of how these policies work and see if it might not make sense to purchase one for your little guy!