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The Donskoy is a Russian Breed of hairless cats also called the Don Sphynx. This breed was discovered in the city of Rostov-on-Don, Russia in 1987 by cat breeder Elena Kovaleva. She rescued a bald female kitten and called her Varvara. Elena treated this kitten medically for her baldness. This cat is the first truly hairless breed. A couple of years later, Varvara gave birth to kittens that also lost their hair just as their mother had. People thought the kittens were unhealthy and did not want them. Irina Nemikina, also a cat breeder, acquired one of these kittens from the litter and started a breeding program. In several years this new breed was named the Don Sphynx- Don after the river in Russia near where Varvara was found and Sphynx because they are hairless. It was later realized that this baldness was a result of a natural gene mutation. This breed was recognized by the World Cat Federation (WCF) in 1997 and by The International Cat Association (TICA) in 2005. In TICA it is known as the Donskoy.



About the Breed

The Donskoy cat is highly intelligent, friendly, loving and loyal to their owners. They are active,socially interested in their surroundings and enjoy playing alone with a ball or cat toy or chasing a feather ended cat stick you dangle in front of them!.One of the greatest things about the Donskoy is that it blurs the traditional boundaries between cats and dogs.  Dog lovers will adore this cat!. The Donskoy combines the best qualities of the dog and cat into one! They are trainable, come when called by name. Love to follow you around the house and sit and snuggle on your lap or in bed, yet are content to spend alone time and are undemanding.


A Donskoy is a strong boned, muscular, medium sized cat with soft hairless wrinkled skin that is hot to the touch. There are four types of coats; rubber bald, flocked, velour and brush. All but the brush coat are usually hairless. The Donskoy can grow a winter coat and then looses it when the weather warms. All color coats are allowed in this breed. Their body is pear shaped with the back legs slightly longer than the front legs. Their skin is very elastic and wrinkly. Wrinkles are on the head, neck, belly, legs and tail. The ears sit high and are very large, wide open and upright with the tips being rounded. Eyes are almond shaped and slanted. Donskoy paws are very distinctive with long webbed toes and thumbs that bend inward which enable them to grab things. Their paws resemble monkey fingers. The tail is medium long and straight.


Males are larger than females. Altered males are usually 10-12 lbs, where as altered females are 6-8 lbs. Their life expectancy is 12+ years.



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