The history of the Devon Rex cat begins in an abandoned tin mine in Buckfastleigh, Devon, England. In 1960 a feral tom cat with a curly coat mated with a tortie and white stray who had been adopted by Beryl Cox. One of the kittens from this mating was a black/brown male with a coat just like his the feral tom.
Beryl Cox kept the kitten and named him Kirlee. She was aware of Kallibunker (the first Cornish Rex) and the work to preserve that new gene so she wrote to Brian Sterling-Webb thinking Kirlee could contribute to that program.
However it became apparent that the gene creating Kirlee's curly coat was different to the one producing Kallibunker's wavy coat. On close inspection a number of differences in the coat between Kirlee and the Cornish Rex became apparent.
Kallibunker had whiskers that were bent and curled but the gene from Devon resulted in missing or stubby whiskers. Kirlee had tight curls but not as regimented as those of Kallibunker which gave the cat a windswept appearance.
Breeders wanted to conserve the Devone gene in the same way that the Cornish gene was being looked after. The Cornish gene was designated Gene 1 and Devon Gene 2. Kirlee is now seen as the founding father of the breed and all purebred Devon Rex can trace their ancestry back to him.
The Devon Rex is an affectionate and intelligent breed. They are highly agile and enjoy exploring their surroundings which can make them mischievous little cats. They will be quick to let you know when they want feeding or attention which will be more of a demand than a request.
They love to cuddle up to their favourite humans and have been known to perch on their owner's shoulders.
All self colours and coat patterns.
- Status: Common
- Place of Origin: UK
- Rough date of Origin: 1960s
- Hair length: Shorthair
- Activity Level: High
- Vocalness: Medium
- Child friendly: Good with children
- Playfullness: Playfull
- Grooming Requirements: Less than once per week
- Weight: 2.5 - 4.0kg
- Size: Medium
- Allergy friendly: Yes
- House Cat or Outdoor Cat: House Cat
- Pet Compatibility:
- Social Needs:
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