Suffer from cat allergies but don’t want to give up on the dream of owning a cat? Then a hairless cat breed might just be the answer. These wrinkly, and sometimes odd-looking, cats have skyrocketed in popularity in recent years, and make for a great addition to any home.
It is important to note that while hairless cats can be a perfect option for many allergy sufferers, Catster notes that their skin and saliva does still secrete some of the allergy-causing protein (albeit at a much lower level) that furry cats have, so those who are extremely sensitive might still have a reaction.
In many ways, hairless cats are a lower-maintenance option than furry cats ( less vacuuming and lint rolling!) but it's important to keep in mind that because their skin is exposed, they require some extra care. According to Pet MD, hairless cats require bathing at least once a week to keep the oils on their skin in check. They also need to be kept safe from the sun, since they're prone to burns, so they definitely can't be an outdoor cat. But if you’re willing to put in a little bit of extra work, having any one of these hairless cats in your family will be so rewarding.
Probably the most well-known hairless cat breed, the Sphynx defies the typical standoff personality normally associated with cats thanks to their extreme sociability, according to Pet MD. They're also known for being very vocal, but since they can't actually talk to you, you'll have to be sure to take them to get screened regularly for heart problems — something they're prone to.
Like many hairless cat breeds, the Bambino is mixed breed, and is a cross between a Sphynx and a Munchkin. The result is a cat with distinctly short legs and tall, pointy ears. Cat Breeds List says that these adorable kitties are very affectionate and males max out at around nine pounds, so they won't take up too much space.
The Donskoy cat is a muscular breed that ranges from completely hairless to some having hair with bald spots, according to Petful. They're also notably intelligent, making them easy to train.
The Peterbald is a mixed breed cat, created by crossing a Sphynx and an Oriental Shorthair. This Russian-native cat is extremely loyal, according to Catster, and, depending on the individual cat, it's level of hair can range from absolutely none to a felt-like coating.
The Ukrainian Levkoy is smart, playful, and gets along well with other pets. The breed, which has only been around since the early 2000's, according to My Animals, is the result of crossing a Donskoy with a Scottish Fold, hence the ears.
If your favorite character in Harry Potter was Dobby, then an Elf cat might just be the breed for you. This breed is another recent creation, My Animals reports, made by crossing a Sphynx with an American Curl. The result is a playful and extroverted cat with interestingly curved ears.
The Dwelf is, you guessed it, a dwarf elf, made by crossing an Elf with a Munchkin. It retains the curved ears of the Elf while getting the Munchkin's super short legs. According to Simple Most, these cats are dog-like in their personality, being extremely playful and affectionate.