A new breed of cat has been developed in the US, which has been described as a hybrid of a cat, a dog and a werewolf.

The Lykoi is a genetic mutation of the shorthair species, which looks like the fictional werewolf creature as it is unable to grow a full coat of fur.

According to breeders, the peculiar cat has the personality of a dog. Unlike ordinary cats, whose aloof characters differentiate them from their canine counterparts, Lykois are loyal and friendly.

The name comes from the Greek for wolf and translates as "wolf cat". The strange, wolf-like appearance comes from the lack of hair around its eyes, nose, ears and muzzle.

The type tends to have a patchy coat on the rest of its body and on occasion, the cats can go completely bald.

Lykoi cat
The Lykoi lacks hair around its eyes, nose and mouth, giving it a "werewolf" appearance Facebook

Brittney Gobble, a breeder of Lykois, told Yahoo they are "houndlike" and avid hunters who will "peek around a corner and then run straight for you".

She added: "Once they attach to you they have that doglike loyalty.

"Likes on our Facebook page have quadrupled over the past few days. We're being inundated with requests for kittens."

The animals were examined thoroughly to ensure no skin disorders have caused the hair coat appearance. According to the Lykoi website, the University of Tennessee found no reason for the unusual pattern. The only discovery made was that the hair follicles lack the components required to create hair.

While Lykois have a resemblance to Sphynx or Devon Rex cats, they have entirely different genes. The mutation appeared to be natural, rather than harmful to Lykois, so the species was able to be bred safely.

The very first Lykoi kitten was bred in 2011 and a total of 14 other litters have been reported. There are only seven breeders registered across the globe. However, the breed will not be fully available to the public for two to three more years so breeders can establish the standard in an ethical way.

Breeders have noted that black cats express the coat pattern more dramatically. In order to distinguish the type, breeders will focus on "only producing solid black cats that have the gene". No pedigree types have been involved and the parentage of the cats is the domestic shorthair.

In 2012, the International Cat Association (TICA) passed Registration Onlu status and is now officially recognised as a breed. According to the Lykoi website, the number of the cats must increase in order for the type to become a "Championship show breed" by 2016.