Donskoy cat

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DSX World Premior RU*Don Xuk's Login WOW (14037189016).jpg
Other namesDon Hairless, Don Sphynx, Russian Hairless
OriginRussia Russia
Breed standards
Domestic cat (Felis catus)

The Donskoy cat, also known as Don Sphynx, or Russian Hairless is a hairless cat breed of Russian origin.[1] It is not related to the better-known mostly hairless breed of cat, the Sphynx cat, also known as the Canadian Hairless, whose characteristic hair suppression is caused by a recessive gene, whereas the Don hairlessness is caused by a dominant gene.[2]


This breed started in 1987 with the discovery of a hairless cat in the Russian city of Rostov-on-Don by cat breeder Elena Kovaleva.[1][3] She had rescued a blue tortoiseshell kitten which she named "Varvara", at around four months of age the cat began to lose fur.[1][3] Varvara mated with a local tomcat and produced a litter of kittens, these kittens are the founding stock of the Donskoy breed, and were later outcrossed with European Shorthair cats.[1]

The Donskoy was first officially recognized by World Cat Federation (WCF) in 1997, and by The International Cat Association (TICA) in 2005. The standard of points describes the cat as being medium-sized and muscular, with large ears, almond shaped eyes and distinctive long, webbed toes. They require frequent grooming, in spite of their lack of coat. Over-bathing can cause the skin to become very oily.

The Peterbald breed was originally created by crossing Donskoy with Oriental Shorthair cats to create a hairless cat of Oriental-type.[1] Matings between Donskoy and Peterbald are no longer permitted.[why?][citation needed]


Not all cat registries recognize the Donskoy and there are some concerns about the genetic health of the breed. Some people[who?] suspect that the dominant genetic mutation causing hairlessness in Peterbalds and Donskoys could cause feline ectodermal dysplasia in its homozygous form, causing problems including poor dentition and compromised ability to lactate.[citation needed]


  1. ^ a b c d e Wilson, Julia. "Donskoy Cat Profile-History, Appearance & Temperament". Cat World. Retrieved 2019-04-24.
  2. ^ "'World's scariest' feline steals the show at cat exhibition". Metro. 2012-03-19. Retrieved 2019-04-24. Donskoys, whose baldness is caused as a result of a dominant mutant gene, were first discovered in Russia in 1987. They are often mistaken for the Canadian Don Sphynx breed whose characteristic hairlessness is caused by a recessive gene.
  3. ^ a b "Donskoy Breed". The International Cat Association (TICA). Retrieved 2019-04-24.

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