Felis silvestris - Peterbald

Family : Felidae


Text © Dr Didier Hallépée




English translation by Mario Beltramini



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 Peterbald is a breed of cat native to Russia. Hairless and with oriental look © Giuseppe Mazza


The Peterbald is a cat breed native to Russia. This cat is characterized by its hairless mantle and by its oriental look. This breed has been created in St. Petersburg in 1994 as a result from the crossing between a Donskoy with an Oriental done for getting a hairless Oriental. The breed has been recognized in 1996.


The almost total absence of the three types of hair is due to the dominant form of the Gp gene, which s found only in the Donskoy and in the Peterbald.

Four varieties of Peterbald do exist:

- The cats completely hairless

- The cats with very short hair, called “velour”

- The cats with hard hair, called “brush”

- The cats with normal hair

The Peterbalds are described as sweet-tempered, pacific, energetic and curious, who have taken the typical attachment towards their master from the Siamese and the Oriental.


Seen from the front, the head, medium-sized, is long and triangular. The skull and the front are flat or slightly rounded. Three types of profile are accepted: perfectly straight, slightly convex or two-planed, with the plane of the front prolonging the plane of the nose without interruption. The cheeks are flat. Sagging cheeks are authorized in the adult males.

Seen from the front, the nose is part of the triangle of the head, without pinch. The tip of the nose must not be narrow. In profile, the nose is long and straight. The jaws are medium. The chin is firm, in line with the nose.

The size is medium. The eyes have an oriental look: almond-shaped and well spaced, bent towards the nose in harmony with the triangle of the head. The colour of the eyes must be intense blue in the cats of point category, and intense green in the cats of traditional category. The uneven eyes (green and blue) are accepted in the multi-colour ones. The uneven or blue eyes are accepted in the white Peterbalds.

The ears, great and wide at the base, well spaced, prolong the triangle of the head. Long, fine and elegant, the neckline distinguishes well the head from the shoulders.

Of oriental type and of medium size, the body s long, tubular and firm. It reveals an astonishing density when touched. It is athletic and slender with a firm and elastic musculature. The shoulders and the hips are of the same length. The bone structure is fine, in harmony with the length of the body and the height of the legs.

Long and elegant, the legs are proportionate with the length of the body. Their structure is fine and the musculature is firm. The feet are oval and small.

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Seen from the front, the medium-sized head is long and triangular © Giuseppe Mazza

- Variety “hairless”: the skin s elastic and completely naked, so much that, when touched, it reminds the caoutchouc. The vibrissae are often absent.

- Variety “velour”: the skin is covered by very short hair, which, when touched, reminds the chamois skin or the satin velour. Often, the extremities have longer hair. The vibrissae are curled and broken.

- Variety “brush”: the hair is short, curly and hard, at times scattered along the body. The vibrissae are curled and broken.

In the cats of the varieties “hairless” and “velour”, the skin may have some plies on the head, the neck, the axillae, the groin and the belly.

Priority must be given to the type. With the same type, preference will be given to the “velour” variety (at the touch, “chamois skin”) with the shortest hair.

Neither fat nor thin, its thinness must not be mistaken with leanness.

Authorized crossings

Peterbald x Peterbald; Peterbald x Siamese; Peterbald x Oriental


All colours


→ For general information about FELIDAE please click here.

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The photographic file of Giuseppe Mazza

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