Nada's Lykoi Cats

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Some quick breed facts...

1. Most of the Lykoi that have popped up have been feral, strays, or in shelters. Most of the domestic cats used were also either strays, or even cats set to be euthanized simply because they were available as adults at a time when too many adorable kittens were also available (and we were able to get these kitties with the agreement we would do full health testing, have one or two litters, and then spay/neuter and place them in loving pet homes). The Lykoi breed is based on SECOND CHANCES! These cats are incredible, healthy and so unique. We didn't "create" them, but we are very happy that they are being given a chance to show how wonderful they truly are...not something that should have ever been tossed aside simply for being "different". So a huge thank you to all the people giving these babies their chance to shine in the spotlight!

2. The Lykoi was established in TICA cat registery in 2011.

3. The Lykoi is currently an Advanced New Breed in TICA (The International Cat Association). We hope to move to Championship status (where we are the same as Siamese, Persians, and other common breeds) in August of 2016.

4. All foundation Lykoi were tested for diseases....skin sample testing, echocardiograms (to check heart health), DNA testing, Thyroid testing, infectious disease testing, blood type testing, and organ panel testing.

5. They do shed (quite a bit), and can even go bald from time to time. Coat varies in thickness/hairlessness based on the individual cat and the climate in which the cat lives.

6. The number of unrelated Lykoi Cats reported to us (from the feral cat population, and not from a breeding program) is 13.

7. We are always on the look out for other Lykoi that pop up in the feral cat population to learn more about the breed, and whenever possible to obtain these new lines to broaden the gene pool!

8. There are 57 Show standard Lykoi in the world. There are more then 25 non-standard colored Lykoi registered. This does not include all the gene carrier cats (the black cats carrying the Lykoi gene).

9. Lykoi are not hypoallergenic.

10. All the Lykoi breeders are strict about not adding to the stray pet population, and most also work closely with rescues. My husband and his associate see more then 50 animals a week for spay/neuters, health checks, and vaccinations. We work closely with fosters, pedigree rescues, our local shelter, and also with service dogs. We believe that both rescue workers and reputable breeders have a place and BOTH are needed to assist in controlling the stray population and educating owners about spaying and neutering to avoid unplanned pregnancy.   All Lykoi kittens, from every Lykoi breeder, does not go home until spayed or neutered so there is no risk of an "oops" breeding or these cats ending up being breed by backyard breeders. Team Lykoi is trying to show the world that a breed can be established with health and personality as the first goals, while continuing to also support rescues.

Thanks for reading all this! And thank you to all new and old fans and supporters 

This Info was written & provided by the breed founders

~Brittney & Johnny Gobble

GobsGobblins King Artemis was our foundation stud and is now retired from breeding. Artemis lives in 
KC, MO @ K9Closet with our good friends 
Blake & Heidi Schamberger along with several of our Sphynx cats.

HERE IS A BIT ABOUT THE LYKOI HISTORY


The Lykoi Cat is a natural mutation from a domestic shorthair that has the appearance of a werewolf. The mutation has occurred in domestic cats over the last 20 years, but to date, no reports of anyone starting a breed have been made. Our founding cats come from two unrelated litters. The first litter was presented to Thomas in Virginia as a possible Sphynx mutation by a rescue affiliated with her vet (which was later disproved with DNA testing). Thomas asked me to help with the kittens after I urged her to get them.  I also asked Brittney Gobble to help us with them and Thomas asked a few other Sphynx breeders as well.  This litter was born around July 2010. The mother appeared to be a normal black domestic shorthair. Dr. Leslie Lyons did a complimentary DNA test for the kittens to confirm they were not Sphynx or Devon. As Thomas did not have the time or resources to do the work including all the genetic and health testing needed or to establish a new breed she opted to give them to Dr. Johnny Gobble. Brittney & Johnny were fascinated by the appearance of these cats! Brittney Gobble drove to get the two unusual cuties and their mother.  Since we live in different regions of the United States this was a bit of an adventure, but the kitties were great travelers! Soon after I urged Brittney to respond to an advertisement that had been sent to me by my friend Ann as they appeared very similar and were in Tennessee. When Britt arrived to pick them up she could immediately  tell that these two siblings had the same gene as the first pair. We see the second set of siblings as a blessing from God! After genetic testing and health evaluation, they were added to the program to increase the number of cats in the gene pool (these two were born approx. September 2010).



Upon starting the program Johnny (who is a veterinarian) decided that testing would need to be done to ensure that we are not dealing with disease or disorders causing the hair coat appearance. Infectious disease tests were performed first in his clinic. DNA testing was then done by UC Davis to confirm that the second set of cats did not carry the Sphynx/Devon gene (all results came back proving that NONE of the founding cats have the Sphynx/Devon gene). We also performed DNA panels for genetic disease, color and blood type on all the founding cats. At the University of Tennessee, dermatologists examined them for any skin abnormalities (and they too fell in love with these cats!). Along with biopsy samples of the skin, the dermatologists could find no reason for the coat pattern. What they did find is that some hair follicles lacked all the necessary components required to create hair (which is why Lykoi lack an undercoat). They also found that the follicles that were able to produce hair, lacked the proper balance of these components to maintain the hair (which is why Lykoi do molt and can become almost completely bald from time to time). The Gobble's cardiologist also performed cardiac scans to look for any structural problems with the hearts. In the end, we found that the cats are healthy and the hair pattern is not from any known disease or disorder. It was determined that it was indeed a true natural mutation and the Lykoi breeding program began! September 14th, 2011 we welcomed the first kitten ever from a Lykoi to Lykoi Cat breeding.



The name "Lykoi Cat" roughly means "Wolf Cat" in Greek....a very fitting name for these guys! After the name was agreed upon, Johnny sent in all the necessary documentation to TICA to have the Lykoi breed listed as "experimental" (basically letting TICA know we were beginning the process of establishing a new breed) as well as registering the first 5 cats.



We have noticed that the black colored cats express the pattern of the werewolf cat more dramatically so we are focusing on only producing solid black cats that have the gene. Since their parentage is domestic shorthair (no known pedigreed cats have been involved) we are outcrossing using only black domestics. This is being done to broaden the gene pool and ensure healthy kittens. The founding Lykoi and subsequent outcrossing were all completed by the Gobbles in their cattery in Tennessee. They placed the first breeding cats with Thomas and I.  Since that time the Gobbles have graciously placed breeding Lykoi with breeders in the USA, Canada, and several countries around the world. We are keeping in contact with Dr. Leslie Lyons and her team who are working on discovering more about this unique gene and the entire Lykoi gene pool!

 

Since the original breeding, Johnny and Brittney have been able to obtain Lykoi that have occured in the feral cat population from Texas, Missouri, and South Carolina. I (Cheryl Kerr) also located a colony in Vermont and the Gobbles and I were able to work together to obtain 8 cats as well (also helping with getting the other cats in the colony spayed/neutered and vaccinated).  Our most recent colony of Lykoi were found in Canada and have been shared among the Gobbles, Catherine in Canada and myself.

 

Brittney and I recently traveled to Austria where we took the Lykoi before the TICA Board again in 2015 and we were passed to "Advanced New Breed" status. We are a "recognized" breed with TICA and we are now able to show in the ANB class at TICA shows. We now just have to increase the number of Lykoi born so that we can reach the next step in becoming a Championship show breed. But we are well on our way and hope to reach full Championship status in 2016!