Devon Rex – an extraordinary cat

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Devon Rex Study I

A Devon Rex is certainly not your average moggy. It has a face like an elf or an imp, enormous ears, huge eyes and an almost pug nose. These features are all a perfect match for its charming personality. Cat lovers are irresistibly drawn to this cat and it’s true that they “grow on you” as you get to know them.

When you handle one you may think they have a higher body temperature than other cat breeds. They appear to generate heat, however it just feels warmer to us because there is less hair covering its body. Even a full-grown Devon can have such a thin coat that some parts of the cat are almost hairless. This is why they love to be cuddled and smoothed.

They make good pets because they enjoy being played with and petted. In addition they are robust and not prone to serious health problems. Their good health comes from careful cross breeding of the Devon Rex with both American and British Shorthairs, both of which very sturdy and healthy breeds.

They are fairly small cats but they make up for it with heaps of personality. If you are looking for a placid, well-behaved cat that likes to meet you at the door when you come home from work, this is not the pussy for you. Their naughty behaviour often involves food left on the kitchen counters or swinging on the curtains. They enjoy helping you put away groceries or prepare meals. They will get into more trouble than a houseful of other cats when they are left alone for long periods of time. They like to help their owners do everything, so don't be surprised if your Devon insists on a pussy-back, riding around on your shoulder as you tidy up the house.

Why are they called Devon Rex?

It’s called Devon because it was here that it was first recognised as having a distinct coat mutation. The first one was found near a tin mine not far from Buckfastleigh in Devon and was born in 1960, he was a curly coated Tom called appropriately enough Kirlee. All Devon Rex are descended from this fine specimen of catdom which was recognised as a unique natural mutation.

Without going into technicalities they have a different type of coat from most other cats. That’s why they are called Rex, which is a description of its coat. This term applies to the fur of many types of small animals but originated because of the Caster Rex rabbit, first shown in France in the early part of the twentieth century. The fur is short and very easy to care for, a quick smooth over about once a week with a grooming glove is all that is needed to keep the coat in good condition.

All in all a lovely little cat who will thrive on love and attention from you and give you many years of pleasure and enjoyment from their company. In fact one judge and breeder describes them as "Gentle folds of warm downy skin covered with ripples of soft waves and curls wrapped around a purr..."

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