Photo by www.adambaronphoto.com
Here’s a closer look at one of our more unusual residents; Sidney the Sphynx cat.
Sphynx cats are a rare breed of cat with extremely little fur, or at most short fuzz over its body, and no whiskers. They are very affectionate and extroverted and like to cuddle with their humans, other humans, and each other. Sidney Baxter is owned by residents Eddie and Debbie Toro of Tamarac who purchased her from a breeder in Midlothian, Virginia back in 2003.
Sidney, like all Sphynx cats, are prone to sunburn and sunstroke because they lack the normal protection of fur. Debbie says that Sidney needs to wear sunscreen because of this sensitivity.
Because he has no fur, Sidney gets cold the winter so Debbie dresses him in sweaters to keep him warm.
Sphynx cats also tend to get dirty and greasy, since their skin produces the same oils as a fully-furred cat, but the oil is not spread around throughout the fur. Sidney gets bathed on a weekly basis and also gets wiped down in between baths with an unscented baby wipe.
As pets they are notably more social than “normal” cats and Sidney is no exception to this. He is very vocal and lets his Debbie and Eddie know what he wants by whining. Sidney also gets along well with the Toro’s two greyhounds Jane and Gary. Occasionally, he will hiss at them for no reason, but they’ve learned to just ignore him. He also enjoys going for walks in their Tamarac neighborhood while being pushed in his stroller by Debbie.
Sidney loves all kinds of food, “He will fight her for butter, cheese and shrimp,” says Debbie. “He also begs like a dog and eats next to them at dinnertime.” If Debbie has food or milk on the counter and turns her back for a moment, she will find him eating and drinking it.
You may think that cats like Sidney are hypoallergenic, but they can actually be even worse for severely allergic people than furred cats.
The Sphynx is a great breed however if you are interested in one, make sure you find a reputable breeder. Lack of hair can cause health issues with kittens in the first weeks of life due to susceptibility to respiratory infections.
Originally published in April 2011, this story was brought back again due to its popularity!