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Sphynx cats are quite a peculiar breed as they have a lot of physical and character differences that separate them from other cats. Many people have a preconceived notion that all cats are very laid-back, passive, and low maintenance but when it comes to the sphynx breed it’s quite the opposite.
Sphynx cats are known for their energetic and hyperactive traits. They are super playful, inquisitive, and always on the move. Even though they can be lap cats due to their love for affection and companionship, they also thrive on curiosity and displaying their athletic ability. They are quite the acrobats who will perform for your attention while showing off in the process.
These natural entertainers are not your typical domesticated cats and should not be treated like normal felines. Their high-intensity, attention-seeking personalities are some of the reasons why this breed is regarded as high maintenance. With that said, it’s also important to note that while these are breed-related traits, ultimately the disposition of sphynx cats is based on their individual personality and character.
1. Why Are Sphynx Cats So Energetic?
Sphynx cats in relation to other cats are completely different. Not only are they different in their appearance but also in their character, personality, and disposition. Their energetic and vigorous nature actually stems from their personality and breed-related traits. For instance compared to other cats the sphynx breed is known for its boldness, High activity level, exploratory tendency, and sociability.
While personality plays a big role in the nature of these cats, it’s also important to note that they are many contributing factors to their personality. Therefore personalities are individual and cannot be generalized. Let’s take a look at some of the main contributing factors that directly affect the sphynx breed and their personality.
- Hereditary Determinants refer to the genetic makeup of the sphynx breed which controls temperament, characteristics, and tendencies. Thus, through the hereditary approach, it is evident that the genes located in chromosomes are the ultimate explanation of personality to a certain extent.
- Lifestyle/Environment plays a big role in impacting the personality of a sphynx. These pets are very smart and will adjust accordingly to any lifestyle. The way they are taught and trained highly influences their behavior.
- Extraversion traits include being active, vigilant, curious, inquisitive, inventive, and smart. These breed-related traits form their energetic nature and ultimately shape their character.
- Dominance includes bullying as well as the characteristics of dominance and aggressiveness toward other cats and people.
- Impulsiveness traits include erratic behavior and recklessness.
Therefore you would notice that all sphynx owners will have different conclusions when describing their sphynx cats. This is because all sphynx will exhibit different personalities, tendencies, or behavior patterns. While they may share similar personalities, I would be generalizing if I were to say all sphynx cats are the same.
2. Are Sphynx Cats Troublesome?
Sphynx cats will definitely find themselves in a lot of trouble. Whether it’s climbing up counters, jumping on drawers, or knocking things off. They always seem to be fiddling around exploring new things. They can also be quite obnoxious at times with their sudden bursts of energy which often lead them to fulfill their curiosity, all at their owner’s expense.
When they not displaying their acrobatic skills, they busying messing anywhere their bodies touch. As for the poop issues? it’s countless and will give you nightmares until you find the right diet. If not you will spend your day constantly running after their butts trying to make sure their runny poo isn’t messing the house.
And if that’s not enough their attention-seeking capabilities are guaranteed to annoy you, as they have mastered the art of getting what they want. So troublesome? yes, but once you get into a routine and develop some sort of order. It does get a little better.
3. Ways To Discipline/ Control Bad Behaviour.
Before you can start disciplining or training your sphynx let’s get a few things out of the way. So far we’ve established that the sphynx breed is somewhat hyper and displays a high-intensity level. With this, we see that they also require a lot of stimulation as well as attention, and an environment that will help with their development.
So the misbehaving, the troubles, and unpleasant attributes might suggest that they are voids in their routine and environment that must be filled to correct these unwanted behavior patterns properly.
Some of the possible reasons for unpleasant behavior include:
- Lack of Attention.
- Not mentally stimulated
- Medical reasons
These are the most common reasons for Sphynx cats being troublesome. And once the problem is diagnosed it’s normally easier to look for a way to disapprove of unwanted behavior. Here are a few tips that you can use when trying to discipline your sphynx cat.
A. First you want to rule out any medical issues.
Have your cat checked by your local veterinarian. Some of the possible issues which can affect your cat’s behavior include:
- Pica is a medical issue that makes cats eat or chew on things that have no nutritional value. This may be the cause of the unpleasant habit of biting furniture, rugs, couches, etc.
- Behavioral issues are very common in sphynx cats. They may tend to be destructive, aggressive, and unpleasant.
- Urinary tract infection can be the cause of litterbox issues and the dreaded mess that many have to deal with.
B. Understanding your Sphynx cat’s needs.
Sometimes what may look to us as unpleasant and mischievous may be a normal behavior pattern for cats to display. In some cases, their bad behavior is due to a lack of something in their routine.
- If scratching is the problem, you cannot stop a cat from scratching even if you try the best discipline techniques. In this case, you would want to provide an alternative like a cat tree or scratch post for them to scratch freely.
- Some sphynx cats normally run around jumping on countertops. This may be because of boredom. In this case, you would want to fill their environment with interactive toys and play towers to keep them occupied.
- A demanding sphynx could be literally deprived of its owner’s time and attention. This will make them clingy, extra vocal, and destructive until they get your attention. A simple fix could be to plan your day more efficiently keeping an hour or so to spend quality time with them.
C. Practice positive reinforcement.
Cats don’t learn from punishment and screaming is not going to solve the problem as well. The only way to help teach and discipline your sphynx is to reward good behavior and discourage bad behavior.
Every time they use the litterbox reward them. When they play properly with their specified toys and towers give them a treat etc. In this way, you encourage good and accepting behavior. With repetition, the cat will learn and will gravitate to the desired behaviors.
D. Discourage bad behavior and tendencies.
This can be achieved by placing barriers or changing the setup to create a little unfamiliarity. For example, if your cat normally jumps on the counters you can probably move a few things or add a few things.
- Placing things that can make a sound will definitely help keep them away. For example, a few closed shopping bags, empty cans, or cutlery on the countertops can make the place undesirable.
- You can use deterrents to keep them away. These sprays work well in keeping cats away from areas that are out of reach. Over time they will adjust and automatically stay away.
- Speak to your cat in a firm loud voice, and be careful not to scream or become aggressive. Just be firm and serious eventually they will comprehend. A simple ‘NO’ with the right tone is sometimes all you need.
E. Patience, love, and consistency.
Trying to get rid of old habits and unwanted behavior is not easy when dealing with the sphynx breed. Getting upset and aggressive will not help either. The only way you can make positive improvements is by being consistent while being patient.
Like with all things, it will take time. Show affection to your cat, spend quality time with them, and love them through the process. These cats are quite a remarkable breed and with a few ground rules and training, they can adjust perfectly to your lifestyle.
4. Can A Companion Help?
Often the problems that sphynx owners face are the result of their cats not being adequately stimulated or mentally satisfied. We know that the sphynx breed is regarded as very high maintenance, and in most cases, their owners have a 9-5 job or probably have a business to run which makes it difficult for them to always be around to keep their feline entertained.
In such cases the sphynx will try to entertain itself by jumping around, climbing, messing you name it. This just adds to the problem causing them to be troublesome and hated. A companion can greatly help in fulfilling the loneliness in your cat’s routine preventing all sorts of obnoxious behaviors and mischievous incidents.
Due to their highly affectionate nature and high attention requirements, it’s advised that a sphynx cat have a companion. A pair of sphynx will keep each other company, entertain each other and they will not be lonely. Having a pair also gives you, the owner peace of mind knowing that your pets have each other as company instead of bringing destruction to your home.
5. Do Sphynx Cats Ever Calm Down?
Kittens, regardless of the type of breed are normally more active and playful compared to mature cats. These sudden bursts of energy are a completely normal part of cat behavior. In particular, kittens will show a higher incidence of this behavior as a way to get rid of excess energy.
Most of the time this erratic behavior dies down when the cat reaches maturity. After 2-3 years, they normally become more reserved, and equally playful and their personality can finally be seen. However, it’s not necessarily true if I were to say that all sphynx cats calm down. Truth be told, most sphynx cats will exhibit this energetic nature throughout their lifespan.
This vigorous nature is basically their personality and isn’t some phase that passes by. So depending on the personality of your sphynx you can either expect an equally affectionate and playful sphynx or alternatively an over-energetic powerhouse.
To conclude, even though this high-energy erratic behavior is a phase, with the sphynx breed it’s possible for this hyperactive vigorous nature to almost never go away. It’s just traits that are breed-related and are a part of their physiology.