Whether you think they’re handsomely hairless or eerily ET, there’s no denying the Donskoy is a show-stopper. Their suede-like, wrinkly skin may not be the first thing you think about when considering a new furry friend, but you’ll have a hard time finding a more affectionate, people-friendly breed. The Donskoy is extremely loyal, and loves to be handled and held. Inquisitive and intelligent, you’ll also find yourself with a curious companion that will try to include themselves in your daily activities.
The Donskoy, also known as the Don Hairless, Russian Hairless, or Don Sphynx, originated in Russia in the city of Rostov-on-Don, near the Don River. Rescued from a group of cruel children, her savior originally thought the small female cat was losing her hair due to stress or infection. When she later had kittens, they also started losing their hair, and a genetic link was suspected. This fortunate feline became the foundation for two Russian hairless breeds: the Donskoy, and the Peterbald.
Don’t be fooled by the Donskoy’s lack of hair – they actually require quite a bit of extra grooming. Oils build up on their skin, and dirt sticks to the oils, necessitating frequent wipe-downs, or baths. Their nose, nail beds, and ears seem to be particularly susceptible to dirt, and should be kept clean. In addition, the Donskoy should not spend much time outside, but when they do, they’ll need sunblock – their hairless skin burns easily.
Appearance / lifespan:
The Donskoy is a medium-sized cat with a fairly strong-boned, muscular build. They have a broad chest, and a peculiarly rounded belly, as if they’ve just eaten a big meal. Some have speculated that the extra belly fat is there to keep them warm, but regardless, it is a trait of the breed, and not necessarily indicative of over-eating. The tail is medium length, tapering towards the tip with a whip-like appearance. The Donskoy has web toes, which some think contribute further to their alien-like appearance.
The head is a rounded wedge-shape with a flat forehead and chiseled cheekbones and eyebrows. The head is longer than it is wide, with a medium length muzzle, slightly rounded. The flat-nose is described as “Roman”, and seen in profile, there is no downward curve from forehead to tip. The Donskoy’s whiskers may be long, or short, sparse or even absent, and may be curly or thick, and prone to breakage. The eyes are medium to large, almond-shaped with an upward slant. The Donskoy’s naked skin is “elastic” with plenty of pronounced wrinkles, especially on the cheeks, jowls, and under the chin. There will also be wrinkles on the forehead, above the eyes, at the base of the neck, the base of the tail, and on the under belly. Wrinkles are considered a valued trait in the Donskoy.
Though the Donskoy is characterized as a hairless breed, that definition is not as simple as it seems. The Donskoy may be born bald with soft, wrinkly skin, or they may be born with a “velour” coat, in which their body is covered in wavy, soft fur that usually disappears within the first year. With the velour coat, they may be born with a bald spot on the top of their head, and as they lose hair over the rest of their body, some residual hair may remain on face, legs and tail, though that has usually disappeared by 2 years of age. In addition, the Donskoy may be “flocked”, in which they appear to be hairless, but have a very fine peach-fuzz coat. And finally, some hairless are not very hairless at all, and are born with bristly, wiry fur over the whole body, with only a bald spot on the head, upper neck, or back. The Donskoy are currently accepted and bred in all colors. patterns and eye colors.
The Donskoy is largely a healthy cat, though they are prone to skin conditions including acne, rashes, and sunburn. Because they lack hair to absorb the oils produced on the skin, they may need to be bathed or wiped-down frequently.
Behavior / temperament:
If you’re not intimidated by the look of such an unusual cat, the Donskoy is a truly loveable, good-natured, and social breed. They value relationships with both the people and other animals around them, and are not happy if left alone for a long time. It’s not uncommon for owners of the Donskoy to keep two cats for the added company they can give one another. Without a warm coat, the Donskoy gets cold easily, and having a buddy to curl up with will feel ideal to them. The Donskoy is the type of cat who will happily greet you at the door when you come home.
Intelligent, active, and irrepressibly curious, the Donskoy will be your own personal assistant, eager to take part in everything you do. They’re fairly athletic, and though they may explore every cupboard top and bookcase, they are not the “climb the curtains” type. They respond well to training, and enjoy the chance to interact. The love to be held, touched, and petted.
The Donskoy is very sensitive to temperatures, and does best in a warm, dry environment. If you’ve always wanted to dress your cat up, the Donskoy gives you a good reason: particularly during colder months or when the air conditioning is going, they may need a little t-shirt or sweater.
bald appearance, gentle cat, loving lap cats, sweet little ball
high maintenance cat, ear cleaning, frequent baths
There are so many misconceptions about raw feeding and I hope to quickly properly educate you so making an opinion for yourself is easier. I am a certified nutritionist for dogs and cats and the moment I finished my education I knew I needed to make better choices for my own personal dogs in regards to how I fed them. There are pros and cons to any feeding method so I cannot say it's going to be easy to know exactly what choices to make. The doubtful mind always says no, so anyone unfamiliar with anything is always hesitant. I see that a lot with other professionals in the field, specifically veterinarians. I am fortunate to have an integrative veterinarian who 100% supports this feeding method. Lets talk about the pros as there are many. There is no possible way to dispute that a dog's but especially a cat's digestive system and teeth are designed for a diet of animal tissue, they are carnivores. Having jagged teeth throughout their mouth and a very short digestive tract, their bodies are not equipped to properly process plant material. Think of a cow's or sheep's flat teeth, made for grinding plants, and their 4 chambered stomachs, made to digest and assimilate nutrients from plants. They are herbivores. Feeding a diet of dry dog food, which is very heavy in plant based ingredients of many varieties,synthetic vitamins, and taste additives reeks havoc on their entire body systems over time. Some say feeding raw is expensive and time consuming. I'm part of a group with thousands and thousands of raw feeders around the world and we completely disagree. If you can follow a simple recipe you can make raw food for your pet. Learning how to shop for ingredients on sale and making relationships with local butchers is all you need to make it affordable. I feed two dogs raw cheaper than I wold purchasing an average quality dry food. It CAN be done if your pet's lifetime of health is important to you. There are so many support systems out there for this approach, it truly couldn't be any easier. The shelf life of raw food is far longer than that of dry food. Did you know that the nutrients and quality of dry food diminishes with the passing of each day? My dog's food is kept in a deep freezer and put in the refrigerator for thawing each night, ready for the next day. Freezing locks in all nutrients and can be kept for years without spoiling. Does your dog suffer from chronic conditions like ear infections and skin issues? Did you ever think it could be food related? Well let me tell you that it is. I have assisted with completely eradicating a host of chronic health issues in dogs and cats with diet alone. To most recently include a chihuahua with disc disease and no use of his hind legs. He now climbs steps and runs. He is 12 years old. No other therapy than a raw diet, regular massage, and one veterinary acupuncture visit. Let's talk about the cons. Now, most freeze dried and premade raw can be expensive for the amount you get. Feeding freeze dried is mostly for convenience. I use it when I need convenience like a weekend camping trip. I enjoy making my dog's food. There a lot of satisfaction in it for me. There is so much talk about bacteria like salmonella and e.coli when someone references raw food. Can it be present in raw food? Of course! But, did you know that your dry food can and does have the same bacteria? Dry and canned pet food recalls are a very common for bacteria. I have 100% control over the ingredients, processing, and storing of my pets raw food. Proper handling and sourcing of raw ingredients can and does deeply diminish the probability of bacteria. What about parasites? Again, yes of course raw materials can have parasites. As can dry and canned mass produced pet food. And again, the proper handling and sourcing of these ingredients remove this concern. (As a note: I have been raw feeding for over 5 years and NOT ONE of my dogs or clients have been treated for parasites or bacterial issues) Proper formulation can be a con to raw feeding. Honestly, its ridiculously easy. But without the proper ratio of ingredients you can cause issues. Companies make you think it is hard. They want to make you buy their product. It's a marketing scheme that works and unfortunately affects our pets negatively. I hope this review can shed light into the seemingly scary world of raw feeding. Educate yourselves and don't be afraid to jump in head first. Your pet's health and quality of life will be all the proof you need to know this is without a doubt the best decision you have ever made. .
From Megan S 56 days ago