Cat Breeds 101: Selkirk Rex!

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Cat Breeds 101: Selkirk RexPhoto – Wikipedia – lic. under CC 3.0

Though best distinguished by their toy-like appearance, Selkirk Rex cats are also well recognized for their disheveled or rumpled coats which make them appear as if they’re having a bad hair day! However most people cannot keep themselves from petting the tousled and untidy hair of these cats. These cats don’t usually win the beauty pageants, but they always manage to bring home the Miss Congeniality award. 😉



Today, the Selkirk Rex is considered as one of the newest breeds of felines established. In 1987, one of the litter of five caught the attention of Jeri Newman, who at the time was fond of breeding Persians. That remarkable cat usually pestered Newman for attention, thus, earning him the name Miss DePesto. In addition to her curly whiskers, Newman found out that Miss DePestois mother was also unusual in a way that the end of her hair had a slight kink. Miss DePesto looks like a Cornish Rex in many ways, but the former has a long pair of legs and fine boning. In terms of weight, both cat breeds are heavy. [1]

Eventually, Miss DePesto mated with a male Persian. The mating produced a litter of 6 kittens. Three of which have curly coats just like their mother. This led Newman to believe the cat carries a new dominant gene. In 1990, the Selkirk Rex earned the recognition of The International Cat Association (TICA). Four years later, the breed’s championship status was granted. The breed further received its the championship status from the Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) and the Governing Council of the Cat Fancy (GCCF) in 2000 and 2009, respectively.



Cats of this breed may either be short-haired or long-haired. They also have dense and plush coats which when combined with their tousled hair makes them appear like a sheep. All coat patterns are accepted for this breed. Clear and intense colors are more preferred for the eyes. Also, all eye colors are accepted for all coat patterns. [2]

The Selkirk Rex breed has large and round head while other breeds of Rex have wedge-shaped heads. They also have shorter necks and broader chests. According to research, the breed’s coat continues to develop until two years of age. Normally, the Selkirk Rex cats have curly coats at birth. Eventually, they would lose these coats at 4 to 6 months. After 8 to 10 months, the new coat will begin to develop. Meanwhile, the Selkirk Rex may have medium to large body size. However, it actually takes some time for the breed to achieve full maturity. [2]

The Selkirk Rex cats are normally loving, patient and laid back in nature. Researchers claimed that the temperament of Selkirk Rex actually reflects that of the breeds which were used for its development. Their reserved and laid back qualities are actually derived from the American Shorthairs. Meanwhile, its playfulness is probably acquired from an Exotic Shorthair ancestor. In terms of appearance, the cuddly appearance of the Selkirk Rex cats is probably inherited from their Persian ancestors.

SOURCES:
[1] http://www.cfa.org/Breeds/BreedsSthruT/SelkirkRex.aspx
[2] http://www.tica.org/public/breeds/sr/intro.php?zoom_highlight=Selkirk+Rex
[3] http://www.tica.org/members/publications/standards/sr.pdf

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