Learn more about the Lykoi
Lykoi Breed Standard
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GENERAL: The “Lykoi”, which in greek, roughly translates to “wolf”, is a breed derived from a naturally occuring mutation found in the feral cat population. The Lykoi is a partially hairless breed of cat with a coat that is unique to them.
A combination of 3 distinct traits set the Lykoi apart from all other breeds. 1) Roaning; an amelanistic color pattern of intermixed white and colored guard hairs. The pattern is found in other animals, such as horses, but has not been noted in any other breed of cat. 2) A lack of undercoat. 3) Sparse hair on legs, feet and face mask which gives the appearance of a werewolf.
The physical impression of the Lykoi is a striking cat with no undercoat and intermixed guard hairs that cover an elegant, semi-foreign body. The large, bright, walnut shaped eyes combined with the distinct partial hairlessness around the eyes, nose, muzzle and chin give the Lykoi a mythical, werewolf-like appearance. Lykoi have short to medium hair with varying degrees of guard hair density and roaning, dependent upon coat cycle and base coat color. Coat is rough in appearance but soft and silky to the touch. The high and erect ears, sitting atop a triangular head with rounded contours, paint an accurate picture of a very curious and inquisitive cat. The Lykoi, a very active cat, prefers hunting over cuddling, yet insists on human attention and interaction.
FACE (MUZZLE/CHIN/NOSE): The face is a less extreme foreign type. Muzzle is medium in length; fleshy, gently rounded hairless whisker pads with a definite whisker break. Muzzle ends with a well-developed chin, aligned vertically with nose; full but neither projecting or receding. Nose is hairless and leathery to the touch, slightly rounded down at the end, and gives the appearance of a mask when connecting with the hairless areas around or surrounding the eyes.
HEAD SHAPE: The head is a modified wedge with rounded contours from nose to cheeks to ears. Slightly rounded forehead. Slightly longer than wide.
EARS: Tall, open at the base, rounded tips and set high on the head, vertical and erect.
EYES: Large, walnut shaped, slanting upward with an open expression. Hairless rims desirable.
PROFILE: A concave curve from brow to bridge. No stop.
STRUCTURE: Conformation strikes a medium between slightly slendered, semi-foreign and the elegance of the foreign body type. Proportion and larger balance allowed in males. Neck is medium length; neither thin nor overly muscular.
MUSCULATURE: Solid weight, showing muscular strength without excessive bulk.
LEGS/FEET: Legs and feet are sparsely haired. Medium boning; medium length. Feet appear refined and oval shaped. Toes are long in appearance.
TAIL: Tail is shorter than body and tapers to a point.
The coat of the Lykoi is what sets this breed apart. It is important to differentiate the undercoat, the guard hairs, and the roaning. Undercoat should be lacking over the entire body. Guard hairs cover the body, but are very sparse or completely lacking on the legs, feet, back of ears, and mask (eyes, nose, muzzle, chin.) Lykoi have a grizzled appearance due to the amelanistic guard hairs intermixed with colored coat.
COAT TEXTURE: Soft to the touch. Short to medium; undercoat is lacking; longer guard hairs cover body with coat coverage varying depending on cycle of hair.
COLOR/ROANING: Colored hairs and amelanistic white hairs are intermixed throughout the coat, with each hair either colored or white, from root to tip. The accepted range of colored hair percentage is 30 to 70%, with 50% being ideal.
MASK: The face exhibits a hairless mask connecting the nose, muzzle, eyes and ears giving the classic werewolf appearance.
LYKOI COLORS GENERAL: Solid color cat express the characteristic coat more dramatically. Therefore only solid colors (including white) and solid colors with mink/point/sepia patterns are acceptable to be shown. Amelanistic (roan) pattern in the coat will vary in appearance depending on color.
AOV: All other colors and patterns (tortoiseshell, blue/cream, bicolor, etc.)
LOCKETS: White lockets, buttons and belly spots are allowed.
ALLOWANCES: Degree of sparseness of guard hair varies from almost completely hairless to almost completely coated during molting and phases of hair growth. Eyes to be smaller in proportion to head in cats less than 8 months. Allow for stud jowls in males. Males may be substantially larger than females. Pigmentation spots due to full tanning of skin may occur when exposed to sunlight.
PENALIZE: More than sparse undercoat. Less than sparse guard hairs.
DISQUALIFY: Any evidence of illness or poor health. Visible tail kink. Aggressive behavior endangering the judge.
The following information is for reference purposes only and not an official part of the CFA Show Standard.
Lykoi Color Class Numbers
Lykoi allowable outcross breeds: Domestic Shorthair.