A relatively new breed, there is limited information on its recent history. The Bambino’s development is credited to Stephanie and Pat Osborne of HolyMoly Cattery, who happened to acquire one of these hybrid cats and decided to develop it through selective breeding. The Bambino is the result of crossing between the hairless Sphynx and the Munchkin, and is found with either short or long legs. In 2005, the very first litter of Bambino kittens was registered – a litter that was born at HolyMoly Cattery.
Despite its small, low-to-the-ground appearance, the Bambino is a highly active and agile breed. With a stocky build, large almond-shaped eyes, a short muzzle, large upright ears and a thin tapering tail, the Bambino is easily recognised. The feet are also comparatively large with prominent toes and knuckles. Whilst you might think the Bambino is completely bald, it is in fact covered in a fine coat or down that is not immediately obvious. Due to its lack of hair, the Bambino is susceptible to sun-burn and heat stroke, so it is often necessary to apply a thin layer of sun cream. Avoid over-bathing this cat, as too much washing can dry out the skin. On the other hand, it is important to bath a Bambino every other week as grease can accumulate on the skin quickly.
Owners, breeders and enthusiasts have described the Bambino as an outgoing, gentle and intelligent breed that enjoys participating in family activities. Hairless cat breeds have a higher metabolism than their furry cousins, so they require a wholesome diet. Despite its small proportions, the Bambino will not be deterred and will get involved in exercise and play, being highly compatible with children and other house pets when introduced to them gradually. On average, a healthy Bambino will weigh 6-10 pounds, and will have a life expectancy of 12 years. It is common for a cat to live well into its late teens and 20s, although due to the Bambino being a relatively new breed, it is difficult to determine an accurate average.
Again, due to the Bambino having a fairly recent history, and with Bambino cats being rare and difficult to acquire, any breed-specific or genetic health conditions are not well documented. Some people claim that the Bambino is more susceptible to back complaints like the Dachshund, although unlike the Dachshund, the Bambino has a normal length spinal cord – this is not reduced because of its short legs.