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Selkirk Rex

Selkirk Rex

This is a medium to large cat with heavy boning that gives the cat surprising weight and an impression of power. It has a chunky build, short muzzle and a round head. Selkirk Rex cats can be long- or short-haired. All three types of coat hair - guard, awn and down hairs - are found in the Selkirk Rex cat breed and they are all wavy, giving the coat a soft feel. The curliness of the coat varies with age, gender, climate and season. In the Selkirk Rex Longhaired cat breed, the tail curls are plumy and stand out away from the tail. The ruff hairs are longer and frame the face. Selkirk Rex cats come in all coat colours and patterns.

  • Playful and curious cat
  • Sociable and dependent cat
  • Average build cat breed
  • Requires grooming every day
  • Great family cat
Selkirk Rex cat is watching playfully

Personality

The Selkirk Rex cat has an alert and active personality with a sweet and endearing disposition. This laid back breed is happy to sit on your lap and loves to have a cuddle. It is also more than happy to play games and makes a great family pet.

Selkirk Rex cat is laying on a floor in the kitchen

History and Origins

Country of Origin: USA

Other Names: Sheep cat

The Selkirk Rex cat breed (long hair) is named after the Selkirk Mountains in Wyoming where the first was born to a litter at an animal shelter in 1987. This kitten had an unusually curly coat. An experimental breeding programme with this cat and its offspring, found that this curly coat mutation was a dominant trait – half of all kittens had a curly coat. The trait is recessive in other rex breeds. The Selkirk Rex cat is very popular in the USA and Canada where its striking, thick, curly coat has gained it the nickname 'Sheep cat'.

Health and Common Issues

The Selkirk Rex cat breed lives well into its teens. Some Selkirk Rex cats can suffer from hair loss. Because of input from Persian cats, the Selkirk Rex cat breed is registered with the GCCF in the UK and are tested for polycystic kidney disease which occurs mainly in Persians. As with all cats, Selkirk Rex cats need vaccinations, parasite control and regular veterinary checks to remain healthy.

Nutrition and Feeding

Every cat is unique and each has their own particular likes, dislikes, and needs when it comes to food. However, cats are carnivores and every cat must obtain 41 different and specific nutrients from their food. The proportion of these nutrients will vary depending on age, lifestyle and overall health, so it's not surprising that a growing, energetic kitten needs a different balance of nutrients in her diet than a less active senior cat. Other considerations to bear in mind are feeding the right quantity of food to maintain 'ideal body condition' in accordance with feeding guidelines and catering to individual preference regarding wet or dry food recipes.

Grooming Selkirk Rex

The coat of the longhaired Selkirk cat requires daily attention with gentle grooming to remove any knots and tangles. This is easily done with a wide tooth comb. The shorthaired variety needs less grooming. Over grooming in both will flatten the curls.

Best Cat Breeds for Children

While this breed is not widely recognised as one of the best breeds for children, all cats are different and with the proper familiarisation may still be able to live with children.

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