The Sphynx Cat is a long-haired breed of long-tailed cat usually recognized for its lack of hair. Hairlessness in all breeds is an unplanned, gradual genetic mutation; but the Sphynx, as a pure breed, has been developed through careful, selective breeding, beginning in the early 1960s. The cat was first bred to be a sport/fishing cat. Their athletic ability makes them suited to track and fishing work.
Some common genetic disorders in the breed include hypothyroidism (hypothyroidism is a condition in which the thyroid gland produces too little hormone) and metabolic disease. A hypothyroidism cat often exhibits fever, weight loss, decreased energy level, and slow heart rate. In a metabolic disorder, the body’s organs begin to fail to metabolize the fats and proteins that are not used by the body. The body loses vital fluids causing organ dysfunction and leading to death.
Some of the other diseases or disorders in the breed include skin disorders, hair loss, hypoallergenic signs, and reduced body oils (thereby making the coat less oily). To prevent the development of these diseases, it is best to choose sphynx cats as pet. Their coats come in a variety of colors and textures, and they also can have solid, tabby, or spotted coats. They don’t produce any undesirable odor when they are brushed. Sphynx cats are well rounded pets that can be great with children.
The breed is famous worldwide for its unique set of facial features, including almond shaped eyes (longer than the typical cat’s eyes), long, slanted ears (they are actually ears, not eyes), a hooked nose, a pointed crest that sits high on the forehead, a pronounced chin and powerful jaw line. A combination of these characteristics makes the sphynx cats quite an enigma. The breed is said to be a mix between the American Shorthair and the British Short-haired.
Because of their unusual physical features, Sphynx cat price range are prone to certain types of health issues. One of these health problems is the so-called Devon Rexutation, or the “devil mutation.” According to breeders, this is a fatal “breeding disease” that can potentially affect any of the three recognized types of the breed – the Burmese, Siamese, and the British Shorthair. The mutation, when left unchecked, can lead to a fatal condition called “bleeding kitty,” wherein the affected cat will bleed to death due to the excessive bleeding of the heart muscle.
In addition to the “bleeding kitten” disease, many believe that the “devil mutation” results from natural genetic differences – in particular, from the lack of a protein gene called the sialleting receptor gene (SGR), which the various species of sphynx naturally possess. This lack of the SGR gene, believed by some experts, causes a variety of alopecia conditions, including the so-called “Barn Cats,” or the hairless and completely hairless Australian Barn Cats. And in the United States, some believe that the hairless and totally hairless state of some American barn cats is due to an accidental crossing of Asian Leopard Cats with the native sphynx.
Although there have been very few purebreds drawn to the rare coat of the sih-zaff. In fact, some breeds, such as the American Short-haired Sphynx, are only known to have come from a few populations of feral sphynx cats. Thus, it is very difficult to find purebreds of the rare and unique coat of the sih-zaff. The few American breeds, which are believed to have come from the relatively few populations of domestic sphynx have proved to be short-haired, and usually black-colored, and have often been considered as an inferior type of domestic cat breed.
The coloration of the coat of the sih-zaff does not appear to differ much from the common domestic cat, except for the blotches on the undersides of its legs. They are generally dark brown with black specks or stripes. Occasionally they may be white with black spots. Their coats can sometimes be marbled.