Depression in Sphynx cats is real. These cats are different from other household cats. Their behavior is quite robust and their need for socialization is a requirement for them to remain healthy and entertained.
Sphynx cats are prone to depression and change in their overall behavior when left without socialization and proper stimulation. These cats crave companionship and when alone they can tend to get destructive and saddened. While they can be left alone, it’s important to acknowledge the time constraint they are able to handle, being alone.
The sphynx breed is very peculiar in their needs and desire for affection and company in general. Cats are known as being low maintenance and almost unresponsive in engaging in any activity.
Not so with sphynx, this breed love to be involved and interact with the family. They aren’t the type of cats who will sit down and be happy with food and water but will rather voice themselves when they feel they are being left out.
This is one of the main reasons why they are considered high maintenance and will not do well in homes where there isn’t anyone around the whole day. Lack of such companionship and affection will cause them to be in a depressive state which can ultimately change their behavior and emotions.
Causes Of Depression In Sphynx?
1. Being left alone consistently. They can adapt to change and a proper routine but when they are left alone repeatedly for longer periods it will negatively affect them.
2. Lack of stimulation in their environment. Due to their intelligence, they are curious and will explore every avenue in your home. The environment they require must be properly structured with vertical space and entertainment.
3. Not receiving enough time and attention as well as affection. These cats are attention seekers, to say the least. They will follow you around and make sure you spend time with them.
4. Lack of socialization and overall interaction. They like company and lots of people. A quiet home isn’t something they will enjoy. Apart from everything else, they require human interaction and play, displaying almost dog-like behavior.
5. Being separated from the ones they are attached to for long periods of time. This refers to owners who are busy and leave their cats at home for days with basic necessities. It’s also when they don’t see the ones they are bonded to.
Can Sphynx Cats Be Left Alone?
So far we understand the nature and requirements of the sphynx breed, but can they withstand being left alone?
Sphynx Cats can be left alone for a few hours up to a day. These cats are smart and will adapt to change while keeping themselves busy, however, they will not be able to handle several days alone.
This breed is a very social breed and your absence over a long period of time will negatively affect them. I know a friend who had left their sphynx with a close family member for about a week or so, and when they arrived the cat acted very differently and was never the same again.
On the other hand, I also know a lot of workers who leave their sphynx cats at home alone during the day. Over time these cats adapted to the timing of their owners and they adjusted well to the extent where they knew exactly when their parents arrived home and would welcome them at the door.
It’s obvious that these cats would prefer their human parents and human interaction in general to being left alone. So even though they can be left alone, it’s important to never leave them for more than a day.
Some sphynx cats may handle being left alone better compared to most sphynx who will not be able to deal with loneliness and may end up depressed.
Do Sphynx Cats Get Lonely?
Due to their social and affectionate needs, the sphynx breed does get lonely. This is one of the reasons why they are considered high maintenance.
This breed is extremely affectionate and cuddly. Often known as attention seekers or as clowns. This breed thrives on socialization and involvement, however, when they aren’t attended to and deprived of time they will feel lonely.
Normally they do well in homes where there is a lot of kids playing around as well as other pets who will keep them company. It’s also important to understand that when you bring home a sphynx cat, you actually bring home a new member to the family and not just a pet.
You will be required to give the same time and attention as you would to a baby. Furthermore, they will become vocal and expressive when they need playtime or affection.
Ways To Keep A Sphynx Cat Entertained?
It’s extremely important to keep your Sphynx cat occupied and entertained throughout the day. They need a quality enriched environment to remain curious and stimulated.
A lack of stimulation and companionship can cause them to become depressed and sad.
Here are a few ways to keep a Sphynx cat entertained.
1. Interactive Toys.
Due to their intelligence, sphynx cats need interactive toys that can stimulate their predatory instincts. Toys that can be set in motion or are entertaining enough to keep them interested will be perfect.
2. Get another cat.
Getting another cat is a fantastic way to make sure your sphynx has company when you aren’t home. A feline partner will provide companionship and both can keep each other entertained.
However be sure to choose a breed that will blend in perfectly with the sphynx breed, if not get another sphynx.
3. Create vertical and hidden spaces.
Due to their high intensity and active ability, these cats love to move around. They are great at jumping and a few vertical shelves will be ideal to keep them active and engaged.
It will also ensure, they remain active with enough room to move.
4. Leave The TV ON ( animal planet).
Sphynx cats really enjoy watching tv, especially when the programs involve other animals. Animal Planet, for instance, can keep them sitting still and engaged for hours.
It’s a perfect way to make sure they aren’t bored.
5. Hammock/perch With a View.
Cats, in general, love a good view especially when it involves birds and other animals. A stable hammock at a safe window will keep your sphynx entertained, provided the view is good.
6. Scheduled Playtime.
The best way to keep your Sphynx cat entertained and happy is to provide playtime. The time that you spend with your cat in active play beats any other form of entertainment.
Never deprive your cat of personal playtime, and if you aren’t able to provide this requirement most probably this breed isn’t for you. A lack of personal playtime is one of the main causes of sphynx depression and overall sadness.
Social time is very important, at least for this affectionate and dependent breed.