Ugly cat breeds are all the rage these days; you could say they’re ‘the new black’ of cat high fashion. On a side note, we might add that ugly is merely a matter of interpretation. After all, one person’s ugly is most certainly another person’s cute.
For example, if you love Gizmo from the Gremlins, you’ll love the look of the Devon Rex or the Exotic Shorthair. If, however, you lean towards Star Wars and even E.T, a Sphynx might be best (think Yoda crossed with E.T.).
We’re partial to them all. Which is why in this article, we share the beauty of these ‘ugly cat’ breeds and how they can imprint on your heart.
Find out now what makes these three felines some of the most adorable pets to have…
1. Devon Rex
The bat-eared Devon Rex has wide set eyes and ears. And, according to the Cat Fanciers Association, the ‘adorable combination’ of his ‘elfin face’ and ‘large impish eyes’ only hint at the ‘mad-cap personality within… Which they go on to describe as ‘a cross, some say, between a cat, a dog, a monkey, and Dennis the Menace.’
In fact, with their petite pixie face and oversized ears, it’s hard to ignore the striking resemblance between these cats and Steven Spielberg’s Mogwai. And, unlike most purebred cats, whose looks are the result of deliberate breeding, the Devon Rex’s unique look was developed by mother nature.
As with the Mogwai, these guys love food and might try to eat theirs plus yours plus a midnight snack. Don’t give in to their meowing pleads. Read up on diabetes in dogs and cats and you’ll see obesity is a leading cause.
Why Devon Rex cats make great pets
Whether you’re a big household of kids and other pets or you live alone, your Devon Rex loves being near and dear. They adore snuggling in bed, curling up in your lap, or perching on your shoulder.
As long as they can keep you company – even through the most mundane of tasks – these guys are happy.
- Quirks. Devon Rex cats love being high up – as in the very highest point they can possibly get to in the room. They’re also very trainable. You may be able to teach your Rexy to heel, walk on a leash, fetch or jump.
- Grooming. Devon Rex have sparse and delicate coats that can easily be damaged by brushing. Instead, they need a bath every few weeks. Inspect and clean their inner ears (not the canal, just the inside of the triangular part) each time you bath them.
Speak to your vet about a recommendation on what soap is safe for your cat, and a demonstration of how to clean their ears.
2. Exotic Shorthairs
Exotic Shorthairs are a newish breed that were only recognised as a formal breed by breed registers in the 1960s. They’re short haired versions of Persian cats – having literally been bred from them.
An Exotic Shorthair has a big round faces, cute teensy tiny ears and adorable tufts of fur between its toes. They’re free from long furry tufts obstructing their features, so you can easily appreciate their endearing ‘ugly cat’ facial expressions.
Considering getting one? Take note: if left alone, pet separation anxiety in pets is likely to occur. Like the Devon Rex, Exotic Shorthairs like staying close to their owner.
Watch this exotic shorthair hugging his cat dad by the arm, and refusing to let go:
What makes Exotic Shorthairs great pets?
Exotic Shorthairs are relaxed yet playful and love cuddling on your lap. Their calm demeanour means they make one of the best pets for apartments. But don’t get them wrong – they’re not all chill and still love to do a good mouse hunt if given the chance.
- Quirks. Exotic Shorthairs are ‘late bloomers’ and retain their adolescent personalities longer than many other cats.
- Grooming. Unlike Persians who need loads of grooming, Exotic Shorthairs can do most of their own preening. Nevertheless, a good weekly brush is recommended to get rid of shedding hair and hairballs.
The hairless Sphynx takes the cake for the most ugly cat – or at the very least, most quirky and unusual looking cat. Sphynx were bred from two hairless cat families from Toronto and Minnesota, and they too are a newish breed (developed in the 1960s).
Although they look hairless – and often are – Sphynx may have a fine layer of thinly dispersed fur. Sometimes they also have a puff of fur on their tail tips like lions. Sphynx’s skin is the same colour as their fur would be if they had any. As a result, your Sphynx can have all the same markings as a furry cat has, from monotone to speckled!
In addition to being fairly furless, Sphynx can have short or even no whiskers. Then there’s the unusual proportions… They have thicker paw pads than most cats, that give their feet the outsized look of puffy sneakers. Their tails are long, thin and taper into a fine tipped point.
Why are Sphynx great pet cats?
Sphynx can be very dog-like in character. They’re extremely outgoing, enjoy meeting new people and will come to greet their owners at the door. These guys are very loving, loyal, curious and known for their high intelligence.
Other Sphynx traits:
- Quirks. Do you love to dress up your pet? If so, the Sphynx is your go-to. These guys can easily get cold as a result of their hairlessness and they often need an added layer on cooler days. On hot days, be careful of sun exposure because this can lead to damage their exposed skin.
- Grooming. Unlike most cats whose fur absorbs the natural oils in their skin, Sphynx should be bathed regularly (as often as once a week). Same goes for their ears; be sure to give their inner ears a clean just as often as your bath them, to remove excess ear wax. Speak to your vet about how best to do this.
Ugly cat breeds we love
We love these three ‘ugly cat’ breeds for their cutesome quirks and loving natures. Keep yours healthy and happy with these great cat care tips:
- Pet vaccinations. Schedules most Australian vets follow
- Flea and tick treatment. Need-to-knows for our sunburnt country
- Spay and neuter. We explain the pros and cons of desexing your cat
- Cat gifts. Keep your feline friend happy with these playtime presents
- New kitten. Everything you need to know before kitty comes home and beyond
- Microchipping your cat. We explore what it is, how it’s done and why it’s important
- Cat teeth. How to keep them sparkly with a good oral hygiene routine
Pet insurance for your ‘ugly cat’
Whether you’re a parent to ‘ugly cat’ or one of the ‘friendliest cat breeds‘, we know different cat breeds have their own purrrsonalities. And every cat deserves his or her own cat insurance plan to safeguard against costs you know will happen, like vet visits, and those you might happen, like accidents or illness.