Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Cat Hybrids - Elf Cats

two elf kittens
I just KNOW you think I'm the 'cutest' thing you've ever seen!

Ok, just keep an open mind here.  

The Elf cat is a very new, extremely rare hybrid breed created by Karen Nelson and Kristen Leedom. They started this breed by crossing the Sphinx and the American Curl. What an idea! 
Aside from inheriting the hairless appearance of the Sphinx, they also have the curled ears of the American Curl. Like the Devon Rex, Elves are not hairless as short fine hair can be found on feet, ears, nose and tail; this is more like down fur and comes in different colors. Obviously they hardly shed and believe it or not, you DO have to groom them on a regular basis but this is more to remove sebaceous secretions that develop on their skin that can become sticky to touch and can lead to the development of skin difficulties. So its necessary to sponge bathe from time to time; its good to know elves tolerate their baths well and some grow to really enjoy them.

Of course with any engineered breed, its very important to limit an elf's exposure to the great outdoors, especially in extreme weather;  cold and overexposure to hot sun are hazardous to this breeds health. But overall Elf cats are healthy and remarkably free of genetic defects.
tabby elf kitten
Baby, tabby elf kitten - Love the EaRs!

Elf's have athletic and muscular bodies similar to that of the Sphinx. Sharing an almost lack of fur with their hairless ancestor, Elf cats have very prominent cheek bones and whisker pads. The whiskers and eyebrows are so sparse and short you'd think they lack those as well. Their skin is intensively wrinkled in the shoulder area, their ears and muzzle, though this is especially obvious in the kitten stage. Ears are curled backwards which is a trait inherited from the American Curl. Unique ears together with hairless appearance make up the most recognizable features of the Elves and the long tail tapers into its tip. They weight in at between 10 to 15 pounds.

Elves were originally bred to retain the best qualities of their parent breeds; this makes them highly intelligent, very friendly, intensely social, outgoing and ever so affectionate. Lively and active but gentle best describes this new breed of cat; they literally thrive on human attention and love. Together with being loyal and often be found by your side or on your lap, they also have a mischievous side. Lovers of high perches to climb on and playing with absolutely anything within their immediate grasp, lots of toys are a necessity, especially hanging ones and a must have if you are the owner of an Elf cat. Providing them with a few high shelves or other high locations in your home will prepare their new environments for their homecoming. Highly adaptable, Elf cats can fit themselves into almost any home situation easily and readily. They also adjust to other animals remarkably well so they are social with people and other cats and dogs. It's not recommended to leave your cat alone all day long unless you have things that will stimulate their interest while you are gone. So aside from getting a companion for your Elf  you might also consider building a more elaborate cat tree system ~ any cat would enjoy that!

orange elf cat laying down
My name is Helios and I have noticeable fur!
My husband is planning a reversible cat tree this time. Made in two separate sections that come together and can be taken apart one way to make it up in another. I also want a runway system that goes up the wall and across. There will be little sitting nooks, boxes and niches for our four to play on, sleep in and explore. 

Elf's are pretty pricey and not for the average cat owner with kittens starting at two grand each ~ this price includes first vaccination, deworming, one vet exam before it leaves for your happy home and TICA registration papers.  Kittens also exit they breeders place with a written comprehensive health guarantee. Why the expense? Seems they are not the gold mine one might think. 
Back Yard Breeders and pet shops make their money selling the kittens, most legitimate breeders don't even make enough to cover their own costs. So it’s a very expensive hobby. Most breeders can only hope they can just about break even but usually fall short of that goal. What looks, at first, to be a gold mine can be a financial pit if these breeders aren't careful. Going through the expenses involved limits turning a profit for a authentic breeder. They do it for the love of cats and their new breed, not for the money.

Myyrdin elf cat
This is a parent elf for breeding 
These cats are easily show cats and can earn some of their expense back for their owners if so inclined. For more information check the Official Elf Cat Foundry Breeders Group and I am including the website of the Cattery I got this information on ( in case someone wants more info. I, like the owner of said site, believe that any animal, be it cat, dog, bird or fish, should be a pet first and foremost and they are NOT disposable! If you have an animal, they are part of your family and entitled to all the benefits that their human families can provide. Its just plain wrong to throw them aside because they become 'inconvenient' should you move or something else comes up. 

I hope you enjoyed meeting and getting to know the Devon Rex and the Elf Cat ~ there's more to come. 



  1. Hay, all cats are beautiful! Doesn't matter what they look like --- it's a cat! To me - that's exciting enough!!!

  2. I think I still prefer my fluffy kitten!


Hi and thanks for visiting my blog. I am very grateful for your comment and please leave a link.