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Sphynx Cat Breed Profile

Weight 7.7-15.4 lbs (3.5-7 kg)
Origin Canada
Color Cream, gray, white
Fur No fur
Lifespan 10-16 years
Personality Demanding, curious, entertaining, sociable

Sphynx Photo: Sergey Skleznev/Shutterstock

Breed Characteristics

The Sphynx (also sometimes spelled sphinx) is a cat without fur. So they’re kind of naked and you can clearly see their skin wrinkles. This makes them a bit of a shock, if not downright scary, for some. To put it simply: they aren’t the product of defect breeding! Find out more under “history”.

The fact that the Sphynx isn’t actually so naked is interesting. They don’t have fur like other cats, but they do have a super soft downy fluff all over their bodies. They feel like peaches, velvety and soft. And they absolutely adore cuddling!


Personality and Temperament

What’s the Sphynx cat like? They are very loving and playful, and will do anything to make their owners laugh with their silly antics. You shouldn’t leave this cat alone for a long time, as they get very lonely. They are profoundly close to their owners and love being the center of attention.

Sphynx Photo: New Africa/Shutterstock

Keeping Them Happy

What should I keep in mind as a Sphynx owner? They lose heat a lot faster than other cats due to their lack of fur. To keep their body temperature stable, they need more energy - in the form of food. When it’s cold, these cats like to wear a warm sweater.

Although the sphynx has no fur, it’s not easy to look after. Their skin needs a lot of moisture and they need to be bathed regularly with mild soap.

You should also know that they are at high risk of skin cancer as the sun shines directly on their skin. They always need shade - but it should still be warm. To sum it up: the Sphynx isn’t a natural-born explorer so doesn’t necessarily have to be allowed outside. They’re too sensitive.


Sphynx Photo: Anna Shiman/Shutterstock

Pros and Cons


  • Unique appearance (no fur)
  • Very loving and loyal
  • Intelligent
  • Loves to play tricks
  • Loves to cuddle
  • Dedicated lap cat
  • Gets along well with other cats and dogs


  • No fur to cuddle with
  • Gets sunburned easily
  • Requires a lot of skin care
  • The oily skin sometimes produces spots on the sofa

Sphynx Photo: Grigory Bruev/

Good for People With Allergies?

Atchoo! Are sphynx cats hypoallergenic? After all, they don’t have any fur. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. Although people talk about having a cat hair allergy, you actually react to saliva and skin cells and not the hair itself.

How Do You Pronounce Sphynx?

Sfinks! It’s not especially easy to say. Where does the word come from? It describes an ancient Egyptian statue that shows a lion with a human head. The best known is the Great Sphinx of Giza. If you want to find out more, or if you’re looking for a nice name for your pet, you should check out pet names based on Egyptian royalty or gods.


The Sphynx is a medium-sized cat with downy fluff instead of fur. This means you can see its skin wrinkles right away. They also have very large ears.

Sphynx Photo: Elena Sherengovskaya/Shutterstock


The Sphynx cat comes from Canada and was bred from a normal house cat named Elizabeth. She had a natural genetic mutation, so her kittens were born in 1966 without fur - they then passed on the hairless gene. The breed was an accident and was only purposefully bred after it already existed.

Cruel Breeding

The sphynx is considered an animal cruelty. It was bred to have no fur. However, it gets cold quickly, so it always needs to be in a warm apartment or wear warm clothes. In addition, without protective fur, it can easily injure itself. There is a risk of sunburn in summer. As a hairless cat, it also lacks the whiskers on its mouth. This makes it harder for them to orientate themselves in the dark and to communicate with other cats.

If you really want a sphynx, there is certainly a lot you can do to make it feel comfortable and stay healthy. But what about their fur and whiskers? Nobody can replace them. In addition, by buying a kitten, you support the breeding of these cats. Think carefully about the decision. There are many other pretty breeds!

Fun Facts

It’s basically impossible to pet a Sphynx “the wrong way” (opposite direction to fur growth) :)

Comparable Breeds

Sphynx Photo: Olllllga/Shutterstock