10 Hairless and Short-Haired Cat Breeds That Won’t Leave Fur Everywhere

If you love cats but the thought of having fur all over the house puts you off, getting a hairless or short-haired breed might be your best bet.

Breeds with finer or very short hair typically lose less than breeds with long hair or a thicker hair shaft. It is important to understand, however, that no breed of cat is completely “dandruff-free”.

Speaking to Newsweek, Vicki Jo Harrison, President of the International Cat Association (TICA) said, “Most hairless cats are not really bald and have peachy peachy coats.

Teresa Keiger of the Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) told Newsweek, “If it has hair, that hair eventually dies and falls, just like our own hair.”

Hairless breeds need a little more grooming. The TICA president said, “A cat’s hair allows its fur to absorb oils from its skin. Therefore, cats with little or no fur need regular baths. Make sure you use a shampoo designed for cats.”

Hairless breeds can also be more sensitive to the sun and cold temperatures, noted the TICA president. Hence, it is important to keep them warm in winter and limit their time in sunny places such as windows and doors during the hours of sunshine.

Here are some hairless and short-haired cat breeds that don’t leave fur everywhere.

1. Donskoy

This elegant Russian breed is distinguished by an extraterrestrial look with wrinkles that give them an “extraordinarily old and wrinkled look,” TICA said.

While some have either spotty fur or very short peach-colored fur, Donskoy’s are primarily considered a hairless breed.

Some kittens are born completely hairless, while others lose their hair over time. While some grow a winter coat, it’s often fine and not suitable for very cold winters, TICA explained.

A Donskoy cat.
iStock / Getty Images Plus

2. Lykoi

Lykoi cats are known for their resemblance to wolves, with their name being a game from the Greek word Lycos, which means wolf, according to TICA.

It is a partially hairless breed that is characterized by a blend of hair that ranges from almost black to almost white.

“A lykoi’s fur is sparse and can be almost completely covered, like kittens. Their fur sheds so they are sometimes almost bare,” TICA said. These cats need to be washed often, but bathing is easy because they don’t have a lot of hair.


A Lykoi cat
iStock / Getty Images Plus

3. Peterbald

The coat of Peterbald cats ranges from completely bald to a full coat. Grooming practices vary widely depending on the type of coat, but none require a lot of grooming, according to TICA.

The hairless varieties should be bathed more often, but owners should be careful not to wash them too often to avoid oiling the skin.

“All other coat types should be brushed with a fine-toothed comb once a week to remove dead hair,” TICA said.

A Peterbald cat.
A Peterbald cat.
iStock / Getty Images Plus

4. Sphynx

This striking breed isn’t entirely lacking in hair. TICA said, “Fine down covers the skin of most Sphynx cats and gives the skin a chamois or suede-like texture.” Light hair is also visible on the nose and the backs of the ears.

While they should be bathed regularly, one of the biggest misconceptions about the breed is that they need to be washed once a week. But bathing too much can upset the skin’s natural pH balance, “resulting in overproduction of sebum to regulate itself,” warned TICA.

Keiger of the CFA notes that while Sphynx have very little hair to lose, they are “not maintenance free”. Skin oils, which are normally distributed in the fur, lie on the skin of Sphynx. So, you need “a gentle wipe” to keep your skin clean and to prevent oils from building up.

TICA said, “Bathing with a natural, gentle shampoo every few months to remove build-up of body oils is enough to keep skin healthy and furniture clean.”

A Sphynx cat.
A Sphynx cat.
iStock / Getty Images Plus

5. Cornish Rex

The Cornish Rex’s most noticeable feature is its single coat – the short, curled undercoat – so there is less overall hair to lose, said Keiger of the CFA.

Its very short, curly fur lies close to the body and is incredibly soft, similar to the feel of “cut velvet, karaku lamb, rabbit fur or silk”, describes the CFA.

A pair of Cornish Rex kittens.
A pair of Cornish Rex kittens.

6. Bombay

The Bombay has thick, glossy fur that only requires regular combing to keep its loose hair in check, Keiger said.

Its short coat sheds very little and therefore does not need a lot of grooming. An occasional bath will help keep the coat sharp, while a quick rub with a rubber brush will remove loose hair, advises TICA.

A black bombay kitten in a pot.
A black Bombay kitten sitting in a flower pot.
iStock / Getty Images Plus

7. Bengal

The Bengal’s short fur is known for its distinctive marbling and, according to the CFA, is the only domestic cat breed whose fur has rosettes like the markings of leopards, jaguars and ocelots.

Roeann Fulkerson of TICA said, “Short haired Bengals don’t need a lot of grooming because their short hair causes little hair loss.

A bengal cat laying on a bed.
A bengal cat laying on a bed.
iStock / Getty Images Plus

8. Singapore

The Singapura, the Malaysian word for Singapore, comes from the Southeast Asian country.

The breed exhibits a unique combination of a ticked coat pattern and dark brown color, both of which are native to Southeast Asia, the CFA notes.

Their short-haired fur requires little to no grooming. “If the cat is healthy, bathing is not necessary. Frequent brushing is something she loves,” said Fulkerson of TICA.

Cat breed from Singapore
Singapore cat breed
Associated Press, Getty Images

9. Snowshoe

The snowshoe breed has a short coat that is easy to groom, with most usually grooming themselves unless they’re uncomfortable or stressed out, says TICA.

“It’s a good idea to brush their fur once a week to remove dead hair and redistribute skin oils,” said Fulkerson of TICA.

A snowshoe cat at home.
A snowshoe cat at home.
iStock / Getty Images Plus

10. Devon Rex

The Devon Rex’s fur ranges from wildly curly to a soft, suede-like down. Some kittens lose much of their fur during the development phase, while the fur of some adults changes seasonally.

TICA’s Fulkerson said, “Devons have short, wavy coats with modified topcoats and little undercoat. They lose very little.”

While these easy-care, wash-and-wear cats shed, their shedding tends to be less intrusive than other cats, says the CFA.

Fulkerson said, “They don’t require a lot of grooming and in many cases just brush your hand over the fur.”

A pair of Devon Rex cats.
A pair of Devon Rex cats sitting on a blanket.
iStock / Getty Images Plus

Tips to reduce cat shedding

There are several ways to minimize cat shedding around the home.

Regular brushing

Brushing your cat regularly is the easiest way to reduce the amount of fur your cat sheds. “Regular brushing also removes dirt, dead hair and flakes of skin, making it more likely that your cat has unhealthy skin,” said the TICA president.

Keiger of the CFA said, “Combing / brushing cats regularly will also remove the dead hair that your cat would otherwise lose.” It also gives you a good “one-on-one” time with your cat and keeps her fur in good condition, she added.

Healthy eating

Keiger said that diet is essential to a cat’s coat. “Keeping a cat in good health and condition goes a long way towards keeping the cat’s fur healthy and therefore less likely to fall off.

Simple diet changes, such as adding more omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, can improve the overall health of your cat’s hair follicles and reduce hair loss, the TICA president said.

Hydration

Keeping your cat well hydrated will improve the general condition of their fur and may help reduce hair loss.

The TICA President said, “The amount your cat will need will depend on the weather, your cat’s weight, and their level of activity, but the general rule of thumb is about 3.5 to 4.5 ounces of water for every 5 pounds of their body weight.

“Cats prefer clean, cold tap water. It’s a good idea to change your water at least once a day, ”she added.

Minimize stress

Stress, allergies, arthritis, and obesity can all cause your cat to lose more than normal.

“Big changes, like moving to a new house or adding a new baby or pet, changing the household routine can scare your cat and increase hair loss,” said the TICA president.

A cat on a couch.
A person using a lint roller to remove cat fur from a couch.
iStock / Getty Images Plus