At first glance, it is an animal that arouses many reactions, often torn between attraction and repulsion. Many may perceive this feline as an alien. However, if you don't stop at the first impression and take the time to discover this fascinating black Sphynx cat, you can quickly fall under the spell of its endearing gaze, its elegant gait, and its incredibly soft skin.
The Sphynx cat is known for its rather unusual appearance, thanks to its hairlessness. Although it is said to have emerged in Europe in the 20th century, some texts show that the existence of this so-called "naked cat" goes back much further. Not just in appearance, Sphynx also has a singular character: extremely affectionate, not very anxious, he is sociable and easy to live with. If its look does not leave you indifferent, often attracting ridicule, the Sphynx rarely disappoints its happy owners!
All of the colors are acceptable. The eye color of the Sphynx cat is determined by the color of its coat. Black Sphynx cats' eyes are mostly yellow and blue.
The main characteristic that distinguishes the Sphynx from other breeds is its lack of fur*. However, although it is called a "naked cat", the Sphynx cat is not completely hairless. Its skin is covered with a soft and warm down that reminds the touch of the texture of a peach. Hair may also appear on the muzzle, behind the ears, and at the end of the tail.
Note that many kittens are born with hair along the spine, but this will disappear with age.
The Sphynx cat does not have whiskers, but this does not prevent him from being a good hunter and living normally.
Ideally, the skin of the Sphynx should have as many folds as possible, especially in kittens. The wrinkles are mainly located on the forehead, muzzle, chin, neck, and sideburns.
To compensate for its lack of hair, the skin of the Sphynx cat is thicker than that of other breeds of cats. In addition, there is a generous layer of fat under his skin that keeps him warm. Although thick, his skin often reveals his throbbing veins. The skin of the Sphynx cat breathes, gets dirty, tans, and reacts like human skin. Thus, in summer, he sweats to evacuate the heat and can get sunburn.
*The absence of fur in the Sphynx cat does not in any way represent a genetic defect or a disease. This phenomenon, called hereditary alopecia, is due to a gene that mutated spontaneously and naturally and not to genetic manipulation or a health problem.
Other Physical Characteristics of the Black Sphynx Cat
The head of the Sphynx is a little longer than it is wide, and is characterized by angular contours. The cheekbones are very pronounced and the nose is long. The ears, very large, carried low on the head and broad at the base, recall those of a bat. The eyes are lemon-shaped, wide open, and expressive.
All colors are allowed for the eyes; it is determined according to the color of the dress (skin). The body of the Sphynx is made up of fine bones, powerful musculature, and a broad chest. The legs are quite long and slender, the feet are oval, and the toes are elongated. The pads are particularly thick, which gives the impression that it walks on air. The tail is long and thin, whip-like, like a rat's tail.
Sphynx cat coat color
The Sphynx has no fur, its skin takes on the color of the hairs it would have had. All coat colors are accepted in this breed. However, the shades of colors are barely noticeable, even without fur. For example, a white Sphynx cat will not be white, but rather pink. As for the black Sphynx cat, it will have a dark gray appearance. Generally speaking, the color of her coat will be the same as her nose.
Origin of the Black Sphynx Cat
The appearance of the naked cat dates back a very long time ago. In certain regions of Mexico, very old wall engravings have been found evoking the presence of naked cats. Research has shown that the Aztecs revered these cats which they would have bred.
Hairless cats were also described in 1830 in the Natural History of Paraguayan Mammals by J. R. Rengger.
The first two specimens of naked cats would have appeared in New Mexico among Indians and it is a certain Mr. J. Schinck who would have noticed them.
Although hairless cats have been around for several centuries, the emergence of the sphynx cat is a fairly recent event. So is the breeding of this breed. Indeed, the modern line comes from the spontaneous appearance of a hairless male kitten in Toronto, Canada, in 1966. It was preserved to perpetuate the variety, then, it was brought back from Toronto to the Netherlands by doctor Hugo Hernández.
This one worked lengthily on the race by natural genetic mutation and presented his cats in 1973. It is only ten years later that, in a Parisian exposure, the Sphynx cat aroused great interest. Then The Sphynx cats were exported to the US. Today, the Sphynx cat breed remains quite rare and breeders are therefore few.
Behavior and character traits
The Sphynx is a real companion cat. Extremely affectionate, he loves to be cuddled and he needs his masters to feel safe. Sometimes it's even a real pot of glue; some subjects may tend not to leave their master at all.
This faithful companion brings back his toys, welcomes visitors, and comes running when called, hence his name "cat-dog".
Loving to be taken care of, the black Sphynx cat will not hesitate to come and perch on the shoulder of its owner to attract his attention. This cat has no problem getting along with other pets, especially thanks to its social nature. His patient character also helps.
The Sphynx is never aggressive and accepts very well to share its territory. Mischievous and playful, he will appreciate having one or more play partners in the house. It is an intelligent cat, which will quickly learn to open doors or tap. Remember that it is possible to train it with rewards and incentives.
Sphynx cat skin care
Although devoid of fur, the Sphynx cat requires special skin care.
Just like humans, the Sphynx sweats through the skin. In addition, the sebum of his skin is not absorbed by his hair, which results in oil on his body. To remove excess fat and deposits left by perspiration, the skin of the Sphynx should be cleaned with a damp washcloth once a week.
Moreover, since it does not have melanin, the skin of the black Sphynx cat is very sensitive to the rays of the sun and is prone to burns. It is imperative to apply sunscreen to his Sphynx when he is sunbathing (which he loves!). The ears of the Sphynx will require periodic care, as the production of earwax in this breed is abundant.
Health problems in the Sphynx cat
Contrary to what its frail appearance might suggest, the Sphynx is not a fragile cat. Although it is not appropriate to let it spend the night outside, the naked cat resists the cold very well thanks to the thick layer of fat that it develops under its skin and it can completely go out in winter if it wishes.
However, some subjects may be affected by a disease called CMH. It is an inherited disease that can skip generations, so it is impossible to guarantee that a kitten will not be a carrier of the disease. This condition has the effect of shrinking the walls of the heart, which thus runs out of steam more quickly.
Is the Sphynx cat right for you?
The Sphynx cat is an indoor animal, which particularly appreciates living in an apartment.
During the summer period, he is prone to burns and tends to sweat a lot. The ideal is to set up a personal and cozy corner for him in the house and to avoid taking him outside too often.
He is also an agile cat, who loves to climb everywhere. Thus, it is advisable to provide him with a high perch or a cat tree.
The ideal master
The company of humans is essential to the well-being of the Sphynx. Thus, he needs a dedicated and available master, ready to give him enough affection and time to take care of him.
If, on the contrary, you are an overloaded person, the Sphynx is not the breed of cat for you. Being sociable and having an excellent character, the Sphynx is compatible with the presence of young children and other pets.
Despite its lack of hair, the Sphynx cat is not hypoallergenic, since it is the salivary secretions and the sebaceous glands which are at the origin of “cat allergy”. However, people with mild allergies can be quite comfortable if they can find a solution to their dispersion of hair.
Moreover, note that the Sphynx cat has a strong appetite. To compensate for the calorific loss due to its lack of hair and to maintain its body temperature, it needs a generous, complete, and rich diet.
Things to consider if you own a black Sphynx cat:
Pleasant companion cat for the family, excellent with children
Affectionate and endearing cat
Original and fascinating appearance, very soft to the touch
No problems living with other pets
A very “clingy” cat that constantly demands attention
Requires special maintenance
Uncommon appearance, which may put some people off
Very rare cat, therefore very expensive
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