Cats and Halloween costumes can be a great mix, but the road to outfitting your kitty is often paved with hissy fits. Luckily, the Ukrainian Levkoy cat is always costume party ready. This breed's peculiar look offers an ideal mix of cute and, um, character (think: Count Dracula). Learn more about the feline newcomer, and find out if this unique-looking breed is the right one for you.
FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE
This cat is still a stranger to most animal lovers. The breed started to develop in 2000 in the Ukraine. The developer, Elena Biriukova, achieved the Levkoy's look by breeding hairless Donskoy Sphynx females and Scottish Fold males. (RUI)
MIX IT UP
Due to the natural dominant mutations of folded ears in the males and hairless bodies in the females, the result of this pairing was a feline with inward folded ears and no hair. (Best Breed For Me)
The Ukrainian Levkoy is recognized as a potential "Champion" cat in Russian and Ukrainian "Best In Show" competitions. Organizations in other countries are working on mating the new breed, and they consider the Ukrainian Levkoy as an experimental breed and therefore not eligible for the "Champion" title. (ICFA)
BABY ON BOARD
Ukrainian Levkoys usually give birth to a littler of three to five kittens. These newborns need to be given round-the-clock attention for 16 weeks. The extra care is required because young hairless cats tend to be weaker that their furry counterparts. (Cattery Ukrainian Levkoy)
WHO YOU CALLING DOG?
Stand-out features aside, Ukrainian Levkoys have an athletic, medium-sized body covered in wrinkled skin. These cats also have what is known as a "stepped" profile, which gives the animal more of a dog-like facial appearance. (The Cat Clan)
READY TO RUMBLE
Similar to other hairless cat breeds, Ukrainian Levkoys are energetic and curious. These cats will be acting like kittens far beyond their first birthday. For playtime they are flexible, enjoying a variety of toys and playing alone or with another cat. (Hairless Cat)
Ukrainian Levkoys are generally social cats, forming close bonds with their families. The breed is also known for enjoying a good massage and is not ashamed to jump from lap to lap to see who has the best stroke. (VE Animals)
But even if mom and dad don't have the magic touch, Ukrainian Levkoys are known for being loyal to their owners. Levkoy lovers say that their cat often greets them at the door and follows them from room to room. (VE Animals)
RUB A DUB
With Ukrainian Levkoys, less hair means more work. Like other hairless breeds, Levkoys do not have the oils necessary to keep their bodies clean. This means weekly baths. Additionally, hairless cats have a higher metabolism, so this breed may require more food and water than other felines. (Best Breed For Me)
Ukrainian Levkoys are especially susceptible to skin cancer, sunburns and hypothermia because of their lack of hair. If given the correct treatment and protection from the elements, Ukrainian Levkoys live long and active lives. The breeds life expectancy is 10 to 12 years. (Cat Breeds Junction)
Next: New & Unusual Cat Breeds
LONG DISTANCE ROMANCE
Unfortunately if you are located in the United States, the chances of acquiring a Ukrainian Levkoy in time for Halloween are slim. Since the cat breed is relatively new, most of the felines are located in the Ukraine and the surrounding countries. Expect to wait several more years before you see these pussycats become popular on the other side of the world. (Hairless Cat)
Ukrainian Levkoy Catsspotlight on...
Around The Web