Does a Skinderlop sound like a mythical creature? You’re not too far off. While the Skinderlop does exist, they’re extremely hard to find as it’s a cross between the already rare Scottish Fold with the similarly sparse Sphynx to make an exotic kitty. Almost hairless like the Sphynx, the Skinderlop usually has folded ears like the Scottish Fold. Since there’s not much information on the relatively new breed, we’ll use what we know about the two parent breeds to infer the characteristics of this cool cat.
The Earliest Records of the Skinderlop in History
The first recorded Skinderlop was born around December 2012. The new breed crossed two well-established exotic breeds to make an even more unusual cat.
Known for being (almost) hairless, the Sphynx is highly coveted or despised depending on your preferences in cats. They only have tiny hairs on their body instead of a dense coat of fur and may or may not have whiskers and eyebrows. Their delicate skin requires special care, so despite their appearance, they’re not a low-maintenance breed. If you adopt a Sphynx, you can expect a playful, curious cat who won’t be able to resist a good cuddle once they’re finished romping around the house. While the name implies that they’ve prowled around the ancient pyramids, the Sphynx is a relatively new breed that hails from Toronto, Canada.
The typical Scottish Fold is a burly cat with thick fur, a round head, and folded down ears that almost appear to be cropped. A genetic mutation is responsible for the fold, and not every Scottish Fold has it. In fact, every Scottish Fold kitten is born with upright ears that fold down later, if they do at all. It’s believed that their ancestors arrived in Europe from China in the 18th century when an English sailor returned from his voyage with a cat with folded ears. However, history attributes the origins of the Scottish Fold breed with one special kitten that was born in Scotland in 1961. Susie was the only one out of the entire litter that had the genetic mutation that caused the folded ears. She was bred with the British Shorthair and other domestic breeds to form the modern Scottish Fold.
How the Skinderlop Gained Popularity
Both the Scottish Fold and the Sphynx are relatively new cat breeds that were introduced in the mid-20th century. The Skinderlop mix is even newer, first appearing in 2012. They’re still a very rare breed. You’ll likely pay between $1,500 and $2,000 for a Skinderlop, if you can find one.
Formal Recognition of the Skinderlop
Even though both parent breeds are recognized by organizations such as the Cat Fanciers Association, the Skinderlop isn’t formally acknowledged by any clubs. They’re the new kids on the block, and some skeptics have raised questions on whether the mix is even ethical.
So far, there haven’t been any studies to prove this one way or another. However, one of the few breeders who did produce Skinderlops abruptly halted their breeding program and sterilized their cats, leaving us to wonder what the mysterious implications may mean.
Top 3 Unique Facts About the Skinderlop
1. The Skinderlop’s skin is susceptible to sunburn
You might not take your cat to the beach, but you’ll still need to find a pet-friendly sunscreen if your cat spends much time outdoors.
2. There are many possible coat colors
The Sphynx and Scottish Fold host a variety of standard coat colors and patterns. You might see white, tan, beige, black, gray, orange, silver, cream, or brown, to name a few. It’s also possible for them to have a bicolor or tricolor pattern.
3. The Skinderlop isn’t actually hairless
Just like the fine hairs on the Sphynx, the Skinderlop also has a thin coat of hair despite its bald appearance.
Does the Skinderlop Make a Good Pet?
Very few can claim ownership of the Skinderlop since they’re such a rare pet. There isn’t much information specifically on the Skinderlops, but we can make inferences from the studied characteristics of the Sphynx and the Scottish Fold.
A Skinderlop would probably be considered very high energy for a cat since the Sphynx is an active feline. The round head and folded ears derived from the Scottish Fold coupled with the mostly hairless coat inherited from the Sphynx makes the Skinderlop look like a cute wrinkly alien. If we combine data from the parent breeds, we can make a rough estimate that the Skinderlop has an 8–14-year life expectancy. Of course, that’s assuming that there isn’t anything inherently unhealthy about the mix, which hasn’t been determined yet.
If you’re lucky enough to adopt a Skinderlop, you should learn how to take care of their skin as you would treat a Sphynx’s coat. They have delicate skin that’s easily susceptible to extreme temperatures, so sweaters in winter weather is advisable. You’ll also need to bathe them frequently to relieve their skin of the excess oil.
The rare Skinderlop is literally the embodiment of mid-century modern, combining two established breeds from the 1960s into an other-worldly breed in the 2010s and beyond. Its appearance invokes vague recognition of the parent breeds while also transporting us to the golden age of science fiction.
Thus far, the Skinderlop hasn’t been admitted to any of the cat breed associations. There aren’t many breeders, and one of the few have already called it quits, which raises the suspicion of the naysayers who questioned whether the new breed was a healthy mix. Only time will tell what happens to the Skinderlop, and if the breed will survive.