Beau­ti­ful in the Eyes of its Be­holder

Beauty comes in all shapes and sizes, and the Sph­ynx cat is no ex­cep­tion.


Though some have been known to la­bel the Sph­ynx cat as the “ugly” one, not many will un­der­stand the ap­peal of this unique breed and its bald and wrin­kled façade. While on a su­per­fi­cial level the Sph­ynx lacks com­mon fe­line fea­tures (mostly hair), its beauty is be­yond skin deep. It’s no won­der then how the Sphinx — with its unique body cou­pled with its phys­i­o­log­i­cal and emo­tional warmth — has melted the hearts of many for the past few decades.

The Sph­ynx breed came to be by ac­ci­dent — a re­sult of a ge­netic mu­ta­tion that brought the birth of this hairless breed that we have come to know to­day. In 1966, a black and white do­mes­tic short­hair cat named El­iz­a­beth gave birth to a hairless kit­ten aptly named Prune. The owner recog­nised the cat’s unique­ness, and set out to breed more of its kind. In the mid ‘70s, a lit­ter of kit­tens made up from the same ge­netic makeup were suc­cess­fully bred, and thus be­gan the birth of a new fe­line breed.

Be­fore set­tling for its widely-known name, the Sph­ynx was orig­i­nally known as the Cana­dian Hairless Cat, ac­cord­ing to The In­ter­na­tional Cat As­so­ci­a­tion. Breed­ers even­tu­ally set­tled for the term “Sph­ynx” for the unique breed in ref­er­ence to the sim­i­lar­ity it shared with the grand lime­stone sculp­tures found in the Egyp­tian desserts from the times of Pharaohs.

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