How to Groom A Sphynx Cat

Reviewed by Grooming Expert: Clarissa Stevenson, CFMG

Table of Contents

Sphynx cats are a unique breed known for their hairless appearance. Despite their lack of fur, they still require regular grooming to maintain their skin’s health and cleanliness. 

Sphynx cats are also known for their affectionate and playful personalities, making them great companions for those who enjoy interactive pets. Due to their lack of fur, they are also a popular choice for those with allergies. However, it’s important to note that Sphynx cats are susceptible to sunburn and require protection from direct sunlight. 

Overall, Sphynx cats are a fascinating and loving breed that require special care and attention.

Sphynx Cat Characteristics

Body Type: Oriental

Coat Type & Length: Hairless

Coat Texture: The Sphynx is a hairless breed of cat, with soft, warm, and velvety skin that feels like a peach. They require regular bathing to remove excess oils from their skin.

Sphynx Cat

Essential Grooming Tools for Sphynx Cats

Before we begin the grooming process, we need to have the following tools

Grooming ToolDescription
Nail clippersTrims your cat’s nails carefully to hinder overgrowth and reduce the risk of injuries
Ear cleanerHelps reduce the buildup of bacteria, yeast, and other harmful microorganisms in your cat’s ears, thereby preventing ear infections
Cotton ballsEffectively absorb and remove dirt, debris, and excess earwax from the cat’s ears, contributing to better overall ear health and reducing the risk of infections
ToothbrushMaintains your cat’s oral health by cleaning their teeth and preventing dental concerns
ToothpasteCat toothpaste contains ingredients that combat bad breath, leaving your cat with a fresher, more pleasant mouth odor
ShampooCat shampoos effectively eliminate dirt, grime, and oils from your cat’s coat, while also neutralizing any unpleasant odors, leaving your cat’s fur clean, soft, and fresh-smelling

Equipped with our grooming tools, we’re ready to start grooming our cats!

Grooming A Sphynx Cat: Step-by-Step

Since Sphynx cats don’t have fur, we can jump straight into the bathing process. No brushing is required!

Bathing your Sphynx Cat

Bathing A Sphynx Cat

Bathing a Sphynx cat is a bit different than other breeds since they don’t have fur to protect their skin.

  1. Start by filling a sink or tub with warm water and add a gentle cat shampoo.
  2. Gently wet your Sphynx and lather up the shampoo, being careful not to get any in their eyes or ears.
  3. Rinse thoroughly and wrap them in a towel to dry.

Since Sphynx cats don’t have fur to absorb moisture, it’s important to make sure they’re completely dry before letting them go.

How Often Should I Bathe My Sphynx Cat?

You should bathe your Sphynx cat once a month to keep their skin clean and healthy.

Nail Trimming

ukrainian levkoy cat nail trimming

How to Trim the Nails of a Sphynx Cat:

  • Gather your tools: cat nail clippers, styptic powder (in case of bleeding), and a towel to wrap your cat in.
  • Wrap your Sphynx in the towel, leaving only one paw exposed at a time.
  • Hold the paw firmly but gently, and use the clippers to trim the tip of each nail. Be careful not to cut the quick (the pink part inside the nail).
  • If you accidentally cut the quick and your cat starts bleeding, apply the styptic powder to stop the bleeding.
  • Repeat the process with each paw until all nails are trimmed.
  • Reward your Sphynx with a treat or some playtime to make the experience positive.

Recommended Frequency of Clipping

Sphynx cats are indoor cats and don’t wear down their nails as much as outdoor cats, so it’s recommended to trim their nails every 2-3 weeks.

Ear Cleaning

sphynx cat ear cleaning

How to Clean the Ears of a Sphynx Cat:

  • Gather your supplies: cotton balls or pads, ear cleaning solution (make sure it’s safe for cats), and a towel.
  • Hold your Sphynx cat securely and gently lift one ear flap.
  • Squeeze a few drops of the ear cleaning solution into the ear canal. Be careful not to insert the dropper too far into the ear.
  • Massage the base of the ear for about 30 seconds to help the solution work its way into the ear canal.
  • Use a cotton ball or pad to gently wipe away any excess solution and debris from the ear flap and surrounding area.
  • Repeat on the other ear.
  • If you notice any redness, swelling, or discharge, contact your veterinarian as these could be signs of an ear infection.
  • Avoid using cotton swabs or inserting anything into the ear canal as this can cause injury or push debris further into the ear.
  • Reward your Sphynx with a treat or some playtime for being a good sport during the ear-cleaning process.

Cleaning Your Cat’s Teeth

How to Brush the Teeth of a Sphynx Cat:

  • Start by getting your Sphynx cat comfortable with having their mouth touched. Gently lift their lip and touch their teeth and gums with your finger.
  • Once your cat is comfortable with this, introduce them to a toothbrush specifically designed for cats. You can find these at your local pet store.
  • Use a small amount of cat toothpaste on the toothbrush and gently brush your cat’s teeth in a circular motion. Be sure to focus on the back teeth where plaque and tartar tend to build up.
  • Brush for about 30 seconds on each side of your cat’s mouth.
  • Reward your cat with a treat or praise after each brushing session to make it a positive experience.
  • Aim to brush your Sphynx cat’s teeth at least once weekly to maintain good oral hygiene.

Remember, regular brushing can help prevent dental issues and keep your Sphynx cat’s teeth healthy and clean.

Preventing and Addressing Common Coat Issues

We’re pretty much done with the grooming process. However, we still need to talk about some potential issues:

Matted Fur / Oily Skin

Sphynx cats are hairless, so they don’t typically experience matting issues. However, their skin can become oily and require regular cleaning with a damp cloth or pet-safe wipes to prevent buildup.

Allergies and Skin Irritations

Sphynx cats are prone to oily skin and acne, which can lead to irritation and infection. Regular bathing with a gentle, hypoallergenic shampoo and wiping their skin with a damp cloth can help prevent these issues.

How Often Should I Brush My Sphynx Cat?

You should brush your Sphynx cat once a week to remove any excess oils and dead skin cells. Despite their lack of fur, they still require regular grooming to maintain their skin health. Use a soft-bristled brush or a damp cloth to gently clean their skin.

Can I Use Human Shampoo on My Sphynx Cat?

You should not use human shampoo on your Sphynx cat. Sphynx cats have sensitive skin and using human shampoo can cause irritation and dryness. It’s best to use a shampoo specifically made for cats to avoid any potential harm to your pet.

How Often Do You Wipe A Sphynx Cat?

You should wipe a Sphynx cat once a week. That said, preferably, bathe it.

Can I Bathe My Sphynx Every Day?

You can, yes, but we don’t recommend that. Even though Sphynx cats are high-maintenance, bathing them once a week should suffice.