peterbald breed information
common health issues
The Peterbald is a relatively new breed of cat that originated in St. Petersburg, Russia, in 1994, as a cross between a Donskoy and an Oriental Shorthair. The Donskoy’s hair-losing gene proved dominant, and the four resulting kittens became the founders of the Peterbald breed. These unusual hair-losing cats quickly became popular in their native Russia, and in 1996, the breed was standardized by the Russian Selectional Feline Federation (SFF). In 1997, it was adopted in The International Cat Association (TICA), and in 2008 it was accepted for competition in the American Cat Fanciers Association (ACFA).
The Peterbald has been cross-bred with Oriental and Siamese cats, resulting in a cat with a long, straight facial profile, almond-shaped eyes, large, widely-spaced triangular ears and a lithe body on long legs. She also has webbed feet and oval paws that allow her to grasp objects — some can even open doors!
Peterbalds come in five varieties: they can be born bald, flocked, velour, brush or with a straight coat. Those born with hair — except the straight-coat variety, who do not have the hair loss gene — can lose their hair over time. They come in all colors and markings associated with their parent breeds. Bald kittens are born without hair, and their skin is soft and sticky to the touch. Flocked or Chamois Peterbalds are 90% hairless, and feel silky smooth to the touch. The velour cat is 70% hairless, with a coat up to 1mm in length, which can change to a Flock/Chamois coat as the cat ages. Brush coats have wiry, curling hair that can be up to 5mm long. A kitten with a light brush may change to a bald coat by age 2, but kittens with a heavy, dense brush will always have a brush coat. Straight-coated Peterbalds have short coats and normal, straight whiskers.
The Peterbald is known to be affectionate, athletic and energetic. She is also very curious and intelligent, preferring to stay close by her owner, even following him around the house. She typically gets along well with children, as well as with other cats and pets.
Regardless of her coat type, the Peterbald is still prone to a number of hereditary and congenital conditions that can adversely affect her health, and your family’s budget. Some of the conditions and illnesses Peterbalds are prone to include heart conditions such as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy; eye conditions such as progressive retinal atrophy and cataracts; and fetal development conditions such as ectodermal dysplasia.
Thankfully, Petplan pet insurance covers all hereditary and chronic conditions as standard. Which means no matter what type of coat – or lack thereof – your Peterbald inherits, you’re protected.