The Mexican hairless cat, also known as Sphynx cat was the very first properly recorded hairless cat breed. It is an uncommon breed of cat renowned for its state of a coat. The first breed originated in the year 1966. A natural mutation between hairless kitten called Prune and a family cat brought forth this breed. It is hence not really a breed of cat, but more of a type of cat.
Sphynx cats are very playful and can sometimes be sneaky. They enjoy the company of other pets and like being the center of interest. In addition, they are very smart and therefore can be trained to perform various commands. They are also friendly to people around them and tend to be cuddly because of temperature changes. People who are allergic to cats find them a better solution owing to their hairless nature.
Causes of their hairless nature
The hairless condition is due to a recessive gene that is present in the two parents. They are not completely hairless but have short, fluffy hair that leans close to their skin, giving a hairless look. The lack of fur is caused by a genetic mutation. Cautious selective breeding techniques applied have resulted to the healthier traits of sphynx cats at the same time preserving their hairless state. These cats are also available in various colors. Their weight varies from 8lbs to 15 lbs.
Taking care of Mexican cat
Extra care and attention is required of this breed of cats. It is essential that this breed is kept indoors as they are susceptible to temperature changes as well as skin deformity. Lack of fur apparently does not denote lack of grooming for the cats. Essentially they require more clean up than their hairy counterparts. This is attributed by their hairless nature hence cannot distribute skin oils bringing about an oily feeling upon touch.
They also require a massage daily and a bath, started early on and undertaken by a skilled groomer. Human or dog shampoos are deadly for them. Specialist shampoos are recommended to bathe them and a soft baby towel to dry them in an environment free from a current of air.
To pick up the cat, one should ensure their hands are warm. Cold hands can make them withdraw from being picked up again. These cats are not favored by cold or drafty environments thus the need to protect them from such conditions. This can be done by providing them a warm coat.
Sphynx cats’ lifetime is more than 15 years. However, the lack of hair, can harm the wellbeing of kittens in the initial weeks of their life owing to their vulnerability to respiratory infections. Breeders hence ground their kittens until they are at least 12 weeks to ensure they are mature enough to go to new environments.
Even though this breed has a hairless nature, they also can cause an allergic reaction to people. Their saliva contains allergy causing proteins and they still get rid of skin cells which cause allergy.