Over the past few weeks, the world’s attention has been very much focused on the conflict in Ukraine. The situation is affecting not just its people, but also its animals, which has been just heartbreaking to see. Our feline friends are just as popular in Ukraine as they are here. However, while Ukrainians have all sorts of cats, only one breed originated in the region: the Levkoy. A vet takes a look at this unusual kitty below.
The Ukrainian Levkoy is a fairly new cat. Between 2000 and 2011, a breeder named Elena Biriukova developed the breed by crossing hairless Donskoys with Scottish Folds. The breed isn’t currently recognized by the international breeders associations, such as the CFA or TICA. However, in 2005, they were officially accepted by a regional one, the ICFA RUI.
Levkoys are a hairless breed. These sweet kitties have a very distinctive look. Their heads are unusually angular, and their ears are sometimes rounded, like the Scottish Fold’s. They sometimes have curly whiskers and/or long tails with pointy ends. It’s also worth mentioning that they can get pretty big!
Levkoys are very affectionate and lovable, and they get really attached to their humans. In fact, they are so sociable that they can get depressed and anxious if left alone for even eight hours. If you get one, you may want to get your feline pal a buddy, so she doesn’t get lonely. Levkoys are also very playful, though rarely aggressive, and need plenty of toys and playtime.
For the most part, Levkoys have the same needs as other cats. However, because they don’t have fur, they are prone to getting chilly. They often need sweaters when it’s cold, and will appreciate a heated or thermal bed. You’ll also need to use sunscreen on your kitty if she’s allowed out. Ask your vet for care tips.
Levkoys are quite new, so we don’t have much data regarding their long-term health yet. However, they may be susceptible to the same conditions their ancestors often get. Donskoys are prone to getting dental issues and dysplasia, while the Scottish Folds may develop kidney issues or cardiomyopathy. As with any other cat, proper veterinary care is crucial.
Many wonderful organizations around the world have been stepping up to help the people of Ukraine and their beloved pets. One that is specifically focused on helping animals is IFAW. To learn more about them, or perhaps make a donation, you can visit their site here. Every little bit helps!
Do you have questions about your cat’s health or care? Contact us today!