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Sphynx cats are definitely cool looking, but are they good pets? I thought long and hard about this and came up with 10 reasons Sphynx cats are good pets. Take a look at the list and see if you agree!
1. Hairless Sphynx Cats
One of the primary reasons people decide against having pets inside their homes is all the pet hair on furniture and clothes. Luckily, Sphynx cats are virtually hairless, making them the ideal feline companions for people worried about hair floating around in the house.
Just don’t confuse little hair with no allergies; pet hair is not what causes allergies. Pet saliva and dander (flakes of skin) are what causes allergic reactions in humans. So-called hypoallergenic pets do not exist.
Seeing the sales pitch of “hypoallergenic cat” is also a great way to spot a scam. No breeder worth their papers will sell a supposedly hypoallergenic animal. Non-shedding is the term that most reputable breeders (should) use.
Another great thing about their hairless bodies is that they don’t hack up slimy hairballs right in the center of your expensive Persian rug at two in the morning. Long-haired cats need near-constant grooming and sometimes even special food to prevent hairballs; this is not the case with the Sphynx.
However, keep in mind that cats – regardless of coat length – are prone to vomit for various reasons, such as overeating, food allergies, stress, etc. In addition, sphynx cats have very little to no hair, making them less susceptible to hairballs forming and, as a result, toning down the spontaneous vomiting.
Sphynx cats need regular baths to remove dirt build-up from their skin. Just because they don’t have hair that needs a good shampoo doesn’t mean you can skip out on bathing them. Starting their cleaning routine from kitten-stage may save you some skin later on.
2. Are Sphynx Cats Social?
Cats, in general, are known to be fiercely independent, primarily aloof to their humans, and wary of strangers; however, the Sphynx is one of the exceptions. They have charming and friendly personalities.
Introducing your cat to a new friend won’t be a step-by-step process that takes weeks. Sphynx cats are generally very welcoming to strangers, and having a house full of people should not be very stressful for them.
While it is great to have a social cat, you should also be aware of the risks associated with friendly pets. Cats love to roam, and this breed is no different. And while it might sound incomprehensible to us, not everyone tolerates cats.
If at all possible, try and keep your Sphynx inside your home or on your property. Keeping them close will protect them from any potential dangers outside your home, like free-roaming dogs and people with less than honorable intentions.
3. Pedigree Sphynx
The Sphynx is a purebred cat; they are listed under various cat registries such as The Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA), the American Cat Fanciers Association (ACFA), The Governing Council of the Cat Fancy (GCCF), and The International Cat Association (TICA).
The breeders listed on The International Cat Association website have paid to advertise their kittens and have signed the Breeder Code of Ethics. The voluntary agreement sets out the standards breeders should adhere to as members of the association.
It is pretty essential to buy your kitten from a reputable breeder. These breeders have to uphold a certain breeding standard to ensure they produce healthy kittens while taking the best possible care of their breeding pairs.
If you decide not to use any of the breeders listed in the registries, please be very careful with how you proceed. Never buy a kitten if the breeder refuses a visit to their establishment. TICA has a list of warning signs you should look out for when purchasing a kitten.
Here are some of my favorite cat products
In addition to checking out some other More Meows articles, I hope you’ll check out some of my favorite cat products as well. These are affiliate links, so if you end up using them, I’ll get a commission at no extra cost to you. These are the products I really do find most helpful.
Litter Box: I started out with normal, traditional litter boxes for my cat. Then, I tried this automatic litter box on Amazon (affiliate link), which helped reduce the litter upkeep. Finally, I am now a believer in the Litter-Robot 3 Connect on Amazon (affiliate link). This robotic litter box is not for everyone based on the price tag, but for me the benefits (very little upkeep, works efficiently, clean, mobile app) far outweighed the cost.
Cat Tree: I have purchased a couple of this Amazon Basics Cat Tree on Amazon (affiliate link). My cat spends a lot of time on and around this cat tree, which I position near my sofa. She uses the scratching posts on this cat tree multiple times a day, which means she is not scratching the sofa instead.
Cat Water Fountain: I love this cat water fountain on Amazon (affiliate link). There are three main benefits to having a water fountain like this for your cat. The first benefit is that it keeps water running so that your cat doesn’t need to drink still water. The second benefit is that it filters the water. The third benefit is that it will keep your cat hydrated!
4. Are Sphynx Cats Like Dogs?
If you are after an active pet but don’t have the backyard space for a dog, this breed might be the perfect fit for you as they love to play. Sphynx cats provide you with hours of amusement, showing off their acrobatic jumps and silly antics.
The Sphynx cat is one of the few cats that have dog-like behavior. It won’t be uncommon for a Sphynx to greet you at the door when you arrive home from a long day of work.
It is pretty common for cat owners to complain about all the fancy toys their adult cats promptly ignore after giving it a swipe or two. But, because of the Sphynx’s playfulness, you might get your money’s worth with cat toys.
They are especially fond of chasing and fetching small softballs, lunging for cat teasers, and tracking the elusive red laser dot.
5. Are Sphynx Cats Rare?
It is not very often that you walk into a home and find a hairless, wrinkled cat waiting by the door to be petted. Hill’s pet lists the Sphynx as a rare breed, giving them the novelty element.
More fascinating than their unique looks is that the breed is also available in different colors and patterns. They can be solid colors like white, black, blue, red, cream, silver, golden, and brown and appealing patterns like tortoiseshell, bicolor, and calico.
Keep in mind that some colors and patterns may change – turn lighter or darker – as the kitten grows older. It won’t be anything as drastic going from black to white but expect at least some changes in their color and pattern as they mature.
6. Do Sphynx Cats Wear Clothes?
Pulling a sweater over your beloved feline is a sure way to get you the stink eye from your cat – and probably earn some odd looks from your neighbors. However, with a Sphynx, playing dress-up is kind of a requirement.
Cats, in general, have luscious coats to protect them from the cold or shield their skin from the sun. However, even some Sphynxes with a fine layer of peach fuzz need some help to stay warm during the winter months.
Most cats are not clingy and would wander off to find themselves a comfortable and warm spot to curl up in for their afternoon nap. However, if you happen to have a Velcro Sphynx (a cat that follows you from room to room), they can get cold waiting for you if you are not on the couch and under a blanket – and they’ll need a sweater to keep them warm.
If you live in Minneapolis, you’ll probably have to dress your Sphynx in a thick sweater and cuddle them in a blanket. In contrast, if you live in Death Valley, you need to protect your Sphynx from the sun by investing in a sun shirt (and don’t forget the sunscreen).
The weather and their lack of protection against the elements provide you with the perfect opportunity (or excuse) to dress your Sphynx up in all kinds of fun outfits.
You should start dressing them from the kitten stage to get them used to the sweaters and sun shirts. When they are tiny, and as they grow, you can save some money by using thick wool socks in the winter and thin gym socks in the summer.
7. Sphynx Cat Life Expectancy
It is a stark reality, but the probability of your pet passing away before you are very likely. It is something that you make peace with the day you decide to become a pet owner. So, naturally, you’ll want a pet that has a good lifespan.
Luckily, you can do many things to ensure that your pet stays healthy for as long as possible. A Sphynx’s lifespan is around 15 years, given a few more if you take good care of them.
You can extend their life expectancy by taking them to the vet for annual health checks and vaccinations. Early detection of any possible health issues can save you many tears and vet bills at the end of the day.
Food is another essential factor in keeping them in top shape. Be careful with cheap food as the kibble tends to have a lot more fillers than actual nutrients. So, spending a little more every month would be worth the expense if it buys you more healthy years.
8. Are Sphynx Cats Cuddly?
The positive effect of HAI (human-animal interaction) on human wellness is nothing short of fascinating. Various advantages – particularly in cardiovascular health – are associated with pet ownership. In addition, studies have shown that pets reduce stress levels, depression, and anxiety.
Trained canines primarily filled this role by visiting Children’s wards in hospitals and the like. However, because pet ownership is not always possible, pet therapy has become more popular. Feline friendship can make people feel better.
Dogs are excellent therapy animals but can be a little too enthusiastic for the elderly or not an option for people who are afraid of dogs. The Sphynx cat makes a great alternative in these situations.
Because they are sweet-natured and social, this breed has the potential to serve as a therapy animal. Their love of affection and their gentle natures work wonderfully in situations where older people need comfort.
It makes one wonder if this sort of therapy works for humans; there is no reason why animal-animal interactions should be any less efficient. Let’s say, for example, you have a nervous dog and are looking for ways to provide them with some sort of therapy; getting a sweet-natured cat like a Sphynx can be a source of reassurance for your dog (provided your dog gets along with cats).
TICA has a great initiative running on therapy cat teams. If you want to volunteer as a cat team with your Sphynx, be sure to check out their program.
9. Sphynx Cat Intelligence
Wouldn’t it be great if you could teach your cat tricks? Well, if you decide to welcome a Sphynx to your family, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to know that they can be trained.
In an adorable YouTube video, Rue, a Sphynx cat, amazes us with her ability to follow simple commands in reward-based and clicker training. Rue loves her training sessions, purring for minutes after they are done.
You can follow the basic steps in the video and adjust it to what works for you and your cat. Some of the things you can teach your cat is to:
- Sit and stay
- Walk on a leach
- Jumping through your arms
- Fetching toys
However, don’t be fooled into thinking a Sphynx is the feline equivalent of a Border Collie. Sure, you’ll be able to train your cat, but don’t be disappointed if they refuse to carry out a particular command – your Sphynx is still a cat at the end of the day.
10. Are Sphynx Cats Good Family Pets
Because cats are independent creatures, they do not mind solitude. They might even prefer being the only pet. Luckily, Sphynx cats are more tolerant of children and other pets, including the family dog.
They are a social breed that loves interaction and getting lots of attention. Sphynx cats have huge personalities, and their vibrancy is a great trait when it comes to playing with young dogs and children.
Now, this doesn’t mean that your children and pets will get along every minute of every day. There will be some scuffles, scratches, and even some tears, but with proper rearing and a firm voice, you shouldn’t have much trouble keeping the lot in line.
Just as we teach our children to be gentle and kind, we should give our pets the same foundation to build their understanding of right and wrong. Remember that a Sphynx is an intelligent cat; you can reward them when they play nice or give them a firm “no” when they are catty.
It is also worth mentioning that the Sphynx is not as solitary as expected of the feline species. If the house is empty for the better part of the day, it might be a good idea to get a buddy for your cat.
Sphynx cats are loving cats and great pets. People love that Sphynx cats are so intelligent, cool looking, and social. If you enjoyed this article, please check out a few more: