About the Lykoi

Download PDF breed brochure

One of the most intriguing, and unusual appearing pedigreed cats, the Lykoi has sparked an unprecedented fascination among cat lovers .

LykoiNoted for it’s partial hairlessness, and unique “roan” patterned coat, it has earned the reputation of it’s name which roughly translates to “wolf” in Greek. The Lykoi is not a man made, designer breed, but is a natural mutation that randomly occurs in the feral population.

The Lykoi was first discovered in a feral colony in USA, as a natural mutation, in 2010. Genetic testing and test mating’s proved the Lykoi gene to be a recessive gene, and not related to any other known hairless mutations. The Lykoi was established as a breed in 2011, when the first intentionally bred Lykoi was born to two similar looking Lykoi-type cats discovered in the feral population. Since it’s discovery, there have been reports of other such mutations in other countries, some of which were added to the gene pool to bring diversity in pedigrees.

LykoiThe Lykoi is a fun loving, intelligent breed who loves to interact with humans, cats, and even dogs. They are a medium built cat, with slightly slender legs and muscular body. One of their most striking features is their facial “mask”. Their coat can range from mostly coated, to nearly hairless during times of “molting” which occurs about twice yearly. However, regardless of density of coat, they will always lack an undercoat, giving way to only the top guard hairs. The coat appears coarse, but is actually very soft and silky to touch. Although they have a minimal coat, they are not to be considered hypoallergenic. The most common and striking color is black roan, which is a mingling of black hairs accented with individual white hairs, giving a very vivid appearance to the facial mask and color contrast.

Since the Lykoi lacks a substantial undercoat for weather protection, it is to be considered a strictly indoor only cat. Hypothermia, as well as sunburn can occur if exposed to outdoor weather conditions. Lykoi do require some maintenance such as occasional bathing to remove excess oil from the skin and ears. Lykoi kittens are normally ready for their new homes around 12-14 weeks of age. It is important to choose a breeder who is careful to socialize their kittens as infants and throughout their developing first months in order to ensure a well adjusted kitten and adult. For more information, please contact the Breed Committee Chair for this breed.