Rex cat breeds are not actually breeds but it is more like a category of cat breeds. So what does Rex cat mean? Rex cat just means that the coat of that breed of cat is curly or wavy. Yes, there are cats with curly or wavy hairs and it looks cool. Because of their unusual looks, these cats are in demand but before you get a cat because it looks cool, you need to know a few things about their care and characters.
Curly or wavy hairs come from the cats’ genetic mutations and although you may think that they don’t require much care, this is not necessarily the truth. Rex cat breeds need a different hair and skin care routine than most other cats. Their fur grows from an abnormal hair follicle which can result in breakage if you are not gentle with your brushing.
Also these abnormal hair follicles can lead to other skin conditions such as extra production of grease or wax which are invitations to yeast infections. They need occasional baths to remove the excess oils and dander in addition to cleaning ears more often for the excess wax.
If you own a Rex cat breed you don’t need to worry about matting but you should know that you can’t brush them like other cats either. Experts warn against rubber grooming gloves and advise the fabric side that most brushes have.
1 – Cornish Rex
Cornish Rex is from Cornwall, England. They first appeared in 1950s due to a natural mutation but then the owner of the cat decided to produce this unique and amazing cat.
Generally cats have 3 different types of hair in their coat. The outer fur which is called “guard hairs”, the middle layer or “awn hair” and the undercoat which is also called “down hair”. Cornish Rex lacks the first two and only has the down hair. The texture of the down hair is extremely soft, plush and thin. Due to lacking the first two layers of hair, these cats are suited to an indoor life since they are sensitive to low temperatures.
They are very curious, playful, intelligent and adventurous cats who love the company of humans and get along well with other pets.
2 – Devon Rex
The first Devon Rex was also discovered by Beryl Cox in Devon, England in 1959. At first it was thought to be related to Cornish Rex but when these two breeds were mated it was understood that their mutations for curly hair are completely different and there is no link between them. Unlike Cornish Rex Devon Rex also has guard hairs.
These little troublemakers have the nickname “Pixie Cat” for a reason. They are highly energetic cats with an extreme intelligence. When the two of these combined, you need to keep one eye open most of the time. It can jump really high even for a cat and loves learning new tricks but on their terms so if they don’t learn a trick it is probably they don’t want to.
They are very friendly and hate to be alone. When they feel lonely their intelligence and high energy levels can turn them into little mischievous devils. The good new is they are really good with children and other pets so it is not hard to provide them company.
3 – German Rex
Although there is a Rex cat in Germany in records as early as 1930, the current German Rex breed comes from an unrelated cat that was found by Dr. Rose Scheuer-Karpin in Berlin-Buch in 1951.
Like Devon Rex and Cornish Rex, German Rex is a social, friendly, energetic and athletic cat with a high intelligence. They are very loving cats who need attention. They love being picked up and handled and will form a strong bond with their humans. If you are unable to provide a lot of attention to your cat on a daily basis and play with it everyday or you are away from your home for extended periods of time within the day, German Rex is not for you.
4 – Oregon Rex
As the name implies, Oregon Rex was from Oregon, US. The reason why I wrote “was” is because it is one of the only domesticated cats known to have gone extinct. Their genetic mutation was entirely different from other Rex cat breeds and was a breed on its own. Due to crossbreeding with the Cornish Rex just when Oregon Rex was being developed, it did not exist on its own for long.
Oregon Rex is believed to be a friendly cat thought to have the same traits and temperament as the Devon and Cornish Rex breeds. Past owners of the breed describe Oregon Rex as a headstrong and stubborn cat but with affectionate, playful and social.
5 – Selkirk Rex
Selkirk Rex is another one of Rex cat breeds with a natural mutation and distinct from all other Rex breeds. It was found in a shelter in Montana Their fur can be long or short and there can be both straight and curly haired kittens in one litter which shows that the curly hair genes of Selkirk are dominant.
Selkirk Rex is a loving, patient and tolerant cat. It likes to cuddle but also playful. These cats are not very demanding or overly active.
His fur is ultra-plush and the best thing is he wants everyone he meets to touch this amazing soft fur. This is how much outgoing he is. Selkirks are generally laidback cats but they are also very intelligent. They can learn to open doors or drawers especially if they know there is a treat in that specific drawer.
6 – Tennessee Rex
Tennessee Rex is a new breed that came into existence only in 2004 with a natural mutation. Franklin Whittenburg adopted a stray cat and named her Satin Surprise. Soon after she was adopted Satin Surprise gave birth to a liter of kittens two of which had curly hairs with a shimmer on their coats which gave the satin effect to their coats. After contacting some breeders, a cat geneticist and TICA, it was decided that these kittens had a recessive gene that gave them their traits.
Tennessee Rex is a quite cat except for when it wants food or your attention. They love to be on your lap and to follow you around the house, to sleep on the bed with you or share the couch. They get along just fine with other pets. They want to be and, trust me, will be a part of the family with their gentle and people-oriented nature.
7 – Ural Rex
Ural Rex is a rare and natural breed from Russia. Although rare and new, this breed is recognized by World Cat Federation. They have short and medium coats that are dense and tightly curled. Their hairs are rather wavy than curly and have a soft and gentle feel to the touch
They have muscular and agile but very elegant bodies. With their slightly bulgy eyes they have innocent and friendly looks and the friendliness is not only in their looks. They are very affectionate cats who love to sleep in bed with their humans. They are also tolerant cats that have good relations with children.
Ural Rex is also a very silent cat that doesn’t even meow when its hungry and patiently wait for its human to give the food. These are amazing cats with a very docile and obedient. Think of a cat that is so patient and loving that doesn’t wake you up even when it desires something. That is very rare in the feline world.
8 – LaPerm
LaPerm gets its name from 80s popular hairstyle perm. Those years were fashion nightmares that nobody wants to remember. LaPerm is a rare breed of cat. It is so rare that it got in our list of top 10 rare cat breeds list.
Their coats come in all colors and patterns and also vary in length. Some LaPerm kittens are born without any hair or with straight coats but most of them develop curly coats when they reach maturity. They reach maturity around 2 or 3 years of age.
These kitties are curious and love sitting on a high place and supervising everything that’s going on. They also like being involved in everything their humans do and if they don’t get their attention they may tap on their faces. It is an active breed but it also doesn’t miss any chance to curl up on a warm lap. These social little friends love interacting with people and can be good friends with other pets.
9 – Tasman Manx
Tasman Manx originates from the Isle of Man and is a very old breed. Since they were preferred as ship cats by the sailors due to their amazing hunting abilities, they travelled as far as New Zealand and mating with other cats gave to the birth of Tasman Manx.
Although the breed is known with being tailless, many of them have a small stub of a tail. They can come in all colors and patterns. They are known as social, highly intelligent cats which are generally quite
They can be both long or short haired with a frizzly and coarse tone.
10 – Skookum
Skookums are hybrids of Munchkins and LaPerms. The result is a dwarf and curly cat. These kitties are extremely rare and hard to find even in US where it was first developed.
Skookum is intelligent, athletic, sweet, calm, energetic, athletic, curious and playful but also love having a nap on a lap. They are social and affectionate cats who don’t hesitate returning twice the love they are given. They also love climbing and jumping so it is good to have a cat tree or some cat shelves.
Skookum is so adorable, beautiful and elegant that it is called Shirley Temple of the cat world.