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Selkirk Rex Breed Description

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Selkirk Rex Breed Description

Selkirk Rex Cat | Breed Profile | Breed Description

One of the newest natural breeds, this naturally curly cat originated from a housecat, Miss DePesto of Noface, found in a shelter in Montana. Given to Persian breeder, Jeri Newman of Montana, who bred her to PhotoFinish of Deekay, a black Persian. “Pest” produced three curly kittens out of six proving that unlike the Devon Rex and Cornish Rex, Pest’s mutation was dominant. Because the gene is dominant, curly kittens can be born in the same litter with straight haired kittens.

The Selkirk Rex was developed from a natural mutation that arose in the United States in a litter of domestic kittens born in 1987. Selkirk Rex of today trace their ancestry back to Miss DePesto, a dilute tortie and white. It was accepted by several North American associations during the 1990s and was accepted for championship status in CFA in 2000.


Like the other Rex cats, the Cornish Rex and the Devon Rex, this breed has a naturally curly coat. Unlike the other Rex breeds, the Selkirk has a rounded, stocky body type and comes in both longhaired and shorSelkirk Rexred varieties. They are similar in body type to a British ShorSelkirk Rexr. Brits, Persians, and Exotics have gone into the development of this breed.

Also unlike the Devon and Cornish Rex, this gene is dominant, not recessive.The Selkirk Rex is a patient, tolerant, loving cat that enjoys a good cuddle. They have the docile good nature of their three parent breeds.

Unlike the other Rex breeds Devon and Cornish the Selkirk Rex is not a good potential alternative for someone with cat allergy. They have the shedding undercoats typical of their parent breeds.They are accepted in a wide variety of colors and patterns, including colorpoint. The coat should be soft and curly, with “random” curling rather than a patterned wave or marcelling pattern typical of the other Rex breeds.

Interesting breed fact: The founder of the breed originally claimed that she had named the breed after the Selkirk Mountains, near where the kittens were born in Wyoming. However, when it was pointed out to her that the Selkirk Mountains were actually located in British Columbia, she admitted that she had, in fact, named the breed after her stepfather. This makes the Selkirk Rex the only cat breed today named after an individual.