The most prominent feature of the Sphynx cat is their iconic hairless appearance, which is what attracts many people. Despite their hairless coats, large ears, and piercing eyes, they are not as intimidating as you might think. Their intriguing looks are bound to draw every eye in the room. This cat has a commanding presence, and their human admirers are often surprised to find out the Sphynx breed comprises very friendly and loyal cats.
But you might be wondering: what colors can the Sphynx cat come in? If they are essentially hairless, do they even come in different colors and patterns? Why yes, they do. However, it can be more difficult to distinguish between colors and patterns because of their lack of coats.
To learn more about the Sphynx cat and all the different colors this breed can flaunt, keep reading.
What is the history of the Sphynx cat?
The Sphynx cat breed originated after selective breeding helped preserve the hairless gene. While hairlessness is considered to be a genetic mutation, breeders saw the appeal of the appearance and how many people loved these stunning kitties.
The Sphynx cats that we know and love today didn’t pop up until the 1970s in Canada. This is when breeders put in the work to create a hairless breed. In 1966, a black and white cat gave birth to a small hairless kitten named Prune (a very appropriate name). This kitten was bred to other hairless cats to make more hairless kittens.
At the same time, two separate breeders in different parts of North America happened upon hairless kittens. These two breeders worked to reproduce the hairless cats and create more litters of hairless kittens.
This is when the Sphynx cat became prominent and developed into their own breed. At first, it took a while for the Sphynx to be recognized as an actual breed. As soon as they did, their popularity skyrocketed with the help of their fabulous looks and outgoing personalities.
Many people saw their hairlessness as a worrisome trait; they were concerned that aesthetics took precedence over health. Luckily, this isn’t the case.
It took some time to convince everyone that their hairlessness was not caused by illness or disease, but rather years of selective breeding. No matter what your Sphynx looks like, they are sure to stand out!
Along with their outgoing personalities and fun looks, the Sphynx cat is somewhat high maintenance and prefers only the finest of care. This includes top-notch food, lots of play and toys, knitted sweaters to keep them warm, and a clean place to use the bathroom. This can be made easy with a self-cleaning litter box like Litter-Robot.
What does a Sphynx cat look like?
Sphynxes are medium-sized cats that will catch your eye with their large features and hairless coat. The males rarely weigh more than 14 pounds, and female Sphynx cats are smaller, weighing in at around 10 pounds. These cats look “naked,” and with their larger-than-normal ears and alert eyes, it’s hard to ignore them.
What most people wonder when looking at the Sphynx cat is how they feel to the touch. Their appearance warrants many questions. If you’ve never met one in person, it’s hard to imagine: Surprisingly, they are very soft, with a coat that feels like peach fuzz.
Does the Sphynx cat have fur?
From a distance, it’s true that the Sphynx cat looks like they are completely without fur, but this isn’t strictly true. The Sphynx cat can have a soft and fuzzy down coat that is hardly visible.
Some Sphynx cats have more fur than others, and you can notice it on spots like their chest, the ridge of their backs, and the tops of their heads. This is completely dependent on your cat’s genes and environment, but don’t be surprised when your “hairless” cat has some hair.
How can you tell the color of a Sphynx cat?
The Sphynx cat, like other cats, gets their color from the pigment in their skin. When other cats grow in their coats, the pigment showcases itself in their color and patterning.
The Sphynx cat would do the same if they grew hair themselves, but instead, you can see the pigmentation on their skin. Sometimes it can be very light and difficult to distinguish between the exact color of your Sphynx, but if you look close enough, you might be able to take a guess. Some Sphynx cats will more clearly develop a color or pattern.
What colors do Sphynx cats come in?
When it comes to the Sphynx breed, no color or patterning is off-limits—well, no color that exists in the cat world. If you are looking for a tie-dye or polka-dot Sphynx, you’re going to need to buy them a patterned sweater.
There are two main looks that a Sphynx cat will have: solid or patterned. Solid cats are one color with no other hues or patterns incorporated into their coats, while patterned cats can exhibit multiple colors in multiple ways.
Solid Sphynx cats do not have any discernible patterning and appear to have only one color throughout their bodies.
These cats come in a variety of colors, like black, grey, blue, white, cream, and more.
A solid Sphynx cat is a wonderful addition to the home, though that’s not due to their coloring. They are overall loving and playful cats that just want to be with their humans. If you happen to fall in love with a solid-colored Sphynx, you’ll find yourself more than happy and entertained.
Patterned Sphynx cat variations
There are several different patterns that Sphynx cats can come in, all equally adorable. Many people are attracted to the patterns Sphynx cats display because their hairless appearance gives them a very noticeable look. You can see the difference in pigmentation on your Sphynx cat’s body, unlike on other cats.
The different patterns that your Sphynx could come in are:
If you come across a bicolor Sphynx, you will see two colors or patterns mixed together. You might have a Sphynx that is bicolor with two solid colors, like grey and white, or a tabby pattern mixed with solid black.
Bicolor cats have a beautiful and majestic coat. When you have a Sphynx that is bicolor, you get a unique pet with a unique coat!
If you find a Sphynx that is also calico coloring, you have hit the jackpot. The calico coat is one that is somewhat rare, so you don’t come across a calico Sphynx very often. On a Sphynx, the calico coat is usually white and black with red or brown spots. They will also have white underbellies and legs.
99.9% of calico cats (that includes Sphynxes) are female because the X chromosomes are responsible for color.
Pointed Sphynx cats might somewhat resemble a Siamese cat. They have visibly darker points, which refers to their noses, ears, feet, and tails, while their body is much lighter. As kittens, a pointed Sphynx will be very light, and as they age, they become darker until they are almost the same color as their points.
The tabby Sphynx has a very striking pattern of stripes or blotches. Tabby Sphynxes will have rings around the tails and legs, and sometimes a vertical stripe that runs from their heads to the ends of their bodies. Tabby patterning can include blotches or spots on the neck as well.
Tabby patterns come in a variety of colors, like brown, black, blue, cream, fawn, red, chocolate, or lavender.
The tortoiseshell pattern on a Sphynx is similar to a calico pattern. It is composed of uneven blotches with multiple color patterns, but will not display a white stomach or white on their legs.
They can come in chocolate, fawn, cinnamon, lavender, and cream.
The mink-patterned Sphynx will be one solid darker color with slightly darker tinted points, which is very similar to the pointed pattern. The coloring that the mink Sphynx is born with will likely be similar throughout their lives.
To tell the difference between a mink and a pointed Sphynx, look to the eyes: The mink’s eyes will be an aqua color that contrasts beautifully with their skin.
Bringing color (and joy) to your life
If you don’t think your Sphynx cat fits into any of the colors already mentioned, you might have a Sphynx that is considered to be part of the OSC (other Sphynx colors). A cat with four different-colored paws would fit into this category.
Any Sphynx that you come across will be a welcome addition to the family. They are loving companions that will bring you many years of happiness!
- Sphynx Cat | Breed Of Cat | Britannica
- An Update On Molecular Cat Allergens: Fel d 1 And What Else? Chapter 1 | NCBI
- The Sphynx Breed | TICA
- Why Calico Cats Are Almost Always Female | Business Insider