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Do Sphynx Cats Have Whiskers? Facts About This Furless Breed

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Have you seen a Sphynx cat? These tiny critters have hairless bodies, warm, wrinkly skin, and big, expressive eyes. But something else is missing – many Sphynx cats look like they lack whiskers, which we often associate with most felines. So, do Sphynx cats have whiskers, or are they really whiskerless? Read on to find out.

What Are Whiskers?


Before we talk about Sphynx cats, let’s discuss what whiskers are. Whiskers or vibrissae are long, thick hair strands found on a cat’s face. They’re loaded with sensory nerves that send messages to the brain.

Whiskers are highly sensitive. They can detect even the slightest change in air pressure, helping them explore tight spaces, judge distances, and “see” in the dark. For example, a cat surveying a new room uses its whiskers to brush against furniture and gauge the size and layout without seeing everything.

Whiskers aren’t just found on cats’ faces. They also have whiskers above their eyes, chin, and forelegs. These whiskers help them sense what’s around them and catch their prey. For instance, a cat can use its whiskers on its legs to feel for vibrations while stalking a toy.

Do Sphynx Cats Have Whiskers?


As mentioned earlier, Sphynx cats are known for being hairless, but does it mean they don’t have whiskers, too? The answer is more than just yes or no because it’s a bit more complex.

Sphynx cats have a genetic makeup that makes them furless and affects whisker growth. Unlike most cats with long, thick whiskers, sphynx cats have short, broken, or, sometimes, super-thin ones. There are also sphynx kitties with no whiskers at all!

This lack of whiskers might seem a disadvantage, but it doesn’t mean they’re completely out of luck. Some Sphynx felines can still grow short whiskers that they can use for simple navigation and awareness. However, the absence of thick whiskers can affect their ability to sense their environment compared to cats with a full set of whiskers.

So, how do they cope with their lack of whiskers? They rely more on their other senses! Their wide-eyed vision can detect movements and objects with precision. Their big, pointed ears can pinpoint where the sound is coming from and sense threats. Not to mention, their paw pads and whisker beds help enhance their awareness of their surroundings. So, Sphynx cats can still have normal lives even with little to no whiskers.

Caring for Sphynx With Limited Whiskers


Sphynx kitties are adaptable and resilient—even with reduced whiskers. Despite these, you need to be extra mindful of their environment and give them additional support to keep them safe and sound. Here are a few things to consider:

Handle With Care

The part where whiskers usually grow might be more sensitive on a Sphynx cat. Be gentle when touching or petting your Sphynx cat’s face.

Keep Lighting Consistent

Sphynx can’t “see” when its environment is pitch black or dimly lit. Ensure there’s enough background light to avoid mishaps. Nightlights can be an excellent solution to this problem.

Prevent Stuck Situations

Check your cat’s surroundings. Look for open doors, windows, or tight areas where they can get stuck easily. Supervise your cat’s exploration, especially when surveying its new territory.

Protect Their Big, Beautiful Eyes

Protect your Sphynx cat’s face, especially those large, expressive gazes! Your feline friend is more susceptible to being poked or scratched since it lacks whiskers above its eyes.

Enhance Your Cat's Living Space

As mentioned earlier, Sphynx relies more on its other senses due to its lack of whiskers. Hone those senses and give them plenty of things to smell, hear, and touch. Enrich their environment with toys, tall cat trees, and cat tunnels to keep their senses sharp.

The Whiskerless Wonder: Appreciating the Sphynx


Sphynx’s whiskers may not be visible or missing, but that doesn’t mean this breed is anything less. All cats are unique and incredible, and Sphynx is no exception. With its affectionate and playful nature, it will capture not just your eye but also your heart!

Sphynx may be quirky, but this cat breed is a perfect companion for those willing to embrace its uniqueness. Whether snuggling up on the couch or exploring its surroundings with curiosity, Sphynx cats will bring joy and laughter into their owners’ lives.

Cat Whisker Fun Facts – What You Need to Know


Cat whiskers aren’t just cute but also full of surprises! Here are some interesting tidbits to amaze your fellow cat lovers and friends.

“Whisker” Is an Ancient Word

The word “whisker” has been used since 1600. It was derived from the Middle English word, “wisker,” which means anything that whisks or sweeps. It was also used to describe a man’s mustache or beard. Not long after, it became a word for animal antennae-like hair.

Cats Have a Set Number of Mystacial Whiskers

The longest facial whiskers are a cat’s mystacial whiskers, which are usually in four rows of three, with 12 on each cheek. While some cats have more than 24 mystacial whiskers, the total number should always be even. Their whiskers must be evenly distributed to navigate their environment easily.

Cats Experience Whisker Stress

Since cats’ whiskers are highly sensitive, they experience whisker fatigue. This usually happens when their whiskers bump onto the side of the dish. Consider giving it a shallow bowl if your cat scoops the food out of the bowl or knocks it out.

The Size of a Cat’s Whiskers Corresponds to Their Size

A cat’s whiskers are proportionate to its body’s width and its fur’s length. That way, it can check whether or not it can fit through tight spaces. Hence, the chubbier or fuzzier a cat is, the longer its whiskers. Maine Coon—the largest indoor cat breed—typically has six-inch-long whiskers. Meanwhile, the nearly hairless Cornish Rex has short and curly whiskers.

A Finland-based Maine Coon named Fullmoon’s Miss American Pie, or Missi for short, has the longest whiskers in the world. It has a length of 7.5 inches, per the Guinness World Records.

Cats Can Move Their Whiskers

Cats have whiskers that are connected to a muscle called a “sling”. This muscle helps them move their whiskers independently. Similarly, large muscles surround the whiskers, allowing cats to move them simultaneously. They can fan them out or move them forward when hunting or yawning. They can be pulled back against their cheeks, too.

Their Whiskers Can Reveal Their Mood

If a cat’s whiskers point to the sides of its face and are limp and relaxed, it is happy and content. If they’re pinned back, your cat is likely scared. Whiskers in a forward position and ears perking up mean your cat is alert and ready to hunt. However, if the whiskers are still in a forward stance but the ears are back, it’s a sign of aggression.

Mother Cats Sometimes Chew Their Kitten’s Whiskers

You don’t have to panic if you see your cat munching on its brood’s whiskers. It’s completely normal. It’s the mother cat’s way to stop its kittens from exploring too far.

Kittens might also get their whiskers clawed or chewed by their siblings. Again, you don’t have to worry if this happens. It’s part of their kittenhood, and they’ll survive unscathed without your help.

They Grow Back

If your cat’s whiskers get bumped or pulled, don’t worry! They will still grow back. This process happens as your cat’s fur grows, so you barely notice it. But if the whiskers are constantly damaged or get snagged with force, they might not regrow, or they would, but they’d be weaker than before. And the older your cat gets, the regrowth process takes longer.

They Can Change Color

Like how our hair changes color as we age, so do a cat’s whiskers. But since their whiskers are white, they get darker as they age. They usually turn dark gray or black throughout the years, but this isn’t a given.

They Shed

Unlike fur that needs trimming (if your cat is furry), whiskers don’t need to be cut—they shed naturally! Cat whiskers go through a cycle: growth, dormancy, and shed. Thus, it’s pretty usual to see a lone whisker at home. But if your cat’s whiskers shed a lot, it could mean your cat has infections, allergies, or trauma. Thus, it’s best to visit a vet immediately to identify the cause and treat it before it worsens.

Ready to Share Your Love for Sphynx Cats?


Want to adopt a Sphynx cat? Learn more about this fascinating hairless and whiskerless breed! Ensure you fully grasp their unique needs, personality, and health concerns to prepare yourself for the responsibility. Yes, you may need more time to know more about their special care and quirks, and they may require extra help exploring their environment, but they’ll reward you with lots of cuddles and purrs!

Are you a proud owner of a Sphynx cat—or maybe you’ve met one with unusual whiskers? We’d love to hear about your experiences with your beloved hairless companion! Share your stories in the comment section below. Let’s celebrate and share our love for the whiskerless wonders of Sphynx cats together!


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