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) A lack of undercoat.
2) Sparse guard hair on legs, feet and face mask which gives the appearance of a werewolf.
3) Roaning; an amelanistic color pattern of intermixed white and colored guard hairs.
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.
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: Slightly rounded from the top of the head to the brow with a smooth concave curve from brow to bridge of medium length nose. No hard 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: Undercoat must be completely absent and guard hairs are short to medium in length and soft and silky to the touch. The ideal range of guard hair body coverage is 50 to 100% and varies depending on molting and growth cycle.
MASK: The face exhibits a hairless mask connecting the nose, muzzle, eyes and ears giving the classic werewolf appearance.
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: Less than 30% of body covered in guard hairs.
DISQUALIFY: Any evidence of illness or poor health. Visible tail kink. Aggressive behavior endangering the judge.
LYKOI COLORS: Solid color cats express the characteristic coat dramatically. All colors and patterns are accepted. Amelanistic (roan) pattern in the coat will vary in appearance depending on color.
COLOR/ROANING: Colored and amelanistic hairs are intermixed throughout the coat, with each hair either colored or white, from root to tip. The ideal range of amelanistic coverage is 30 to 70%, and varies depending on depth of coat color.
LOCKETS: White lockets, buttons and belly spots are allowed.
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.
Longhair Lykoi can be registered for breeding and can be shown in Exhibition class.