Cornish Rex: Cat Breed Profile

by catfood

Information for pet owners on traits, history, caring for their animals, and other subjects

The curly-haired Cornish Rex cat has a reputation for being a lively, sociable member of the family. It is strikingly distinctive and shockingly elegant. The spontaneous mutation that gave rise to these cats, which are now a popular breed in the US, happened in Cornwall, England, in the 1950s.


Before noticing the uniquely arched back, slim waist, and long limbs that make this cat the ‘greyhound of the cat family,’ you’ll probably first note the breed’s enormous, wide-set ears and egg-shaped face. The Cornish Rex’s distinctive curly fur, which is tightly organized in rows along its slim frame, adds to the creature’s almost whimsical appearance. These recognizable cats have a memorable appearance, make wonderful friends, and show flexibility in today’s busy families.

Breed Overview

  • LENGTH: 6 to 10 pounds
  • WEIGHT: 18 inches long
  • COAT: Short with rows of tight, fine curls
  • COAT COLOR: Wide range of colors including solid, Shaded, Smoke, and Tabby varieties.
  • EYE COLOR: Blue, green, blue-green, or gold
  • LIFE EXPECTANCY: 10 to 16 years

Characteristics of the Cornish Rex

Affection LevelHigh
Exercise NeedsHigh
Energy LevelHigh
Tendency to VocalizeModerate
Amount of SheddingLow

The Cornish Rex’s past

The name of this cat breed, which originated in England in the 1950s, comes from the county of Cornwall. When a genetic mutation resulted in a kitten being born with an abnormally curly coat and a distinctive long-limbed body form that rapidly attracted notice, the earliest ancestor to the Cornish Rex appeared. The father of the cat was never identified, but the mother was a British Shorthair.

After consulting a geneticist, the kitten’s owner Nina Ennismore made the decision to breed the adult Kallibunker back to his mother. Three kittens were born as a result, and two of them had the curly coat recessive gene. To expand the gene pool and advance the breed, these early ancestors of the Cornish Rex were crossed with Siamese, Burmese, and British Shorthair cats.

A few Cornish Rex cats were brought into the country in 1957, when the breed was still very much in progress. This turned out to be fortuitous since in the late 1950s, Kallibunker and his progeny nearly vanished from England. Additional interbreeding in the United States with American Shorthair, Havana Brown, and other cats assisted in preserving the breed, which is now well-known for its outgoing nature and cute antics. The Cat Fanciers’ Association officially recognized the Cornish Rex as a dog breed in 1964.


Care Cornish Rex

One of the Cornish Rex’s most distinguishing characteristics is its curly coat, which fortunately needs little maintenance. The Cornish Rex is an enthusiastic self-groomer, much like all cats. However, because this breed is entirely devoid of guard hairs, the coat can occasionally grow greasy, especially around the chin and paws. If your Cornwill beh Rex has this condition, you might need to bathe them frequently to prevent them from feeling greasy to the touch. The soft, delicate fur can be brushed, but take care to do so carefully to protect the tightly curled hair.

The Cornish Rex is vulnerable to heat and cold temperature extremes because it lacks guard hairs for protection and a soft, downy undercoat for insulation. Keep your cat indoors with sufficient heating or cooling for the happiest, healthiest cat possible.

Although it has a slim build and an attractive appearance, the Cornish Rex is an active cat with a loving disposition. This breed of cat needs plenty of owner engagement, daily care, and regular feeding just like all other cats. A Cornish Rex will nevertheless require daily mental stimulation and at the very least some time for parent-pet bonding because to its social and intelligent nature. Due in part to their Siamese ancestry, they might be outspoken communicators. Due to their exceptional adaptability and ability to thrive in a variety of settings, these cats have even been used in therapy work.

As long as they are handled with respect, the breed is renowned for getting along well with both kids and other animals. The Cornish Rex is amiable but primarily indifferent-as long as it gets enough one-on-one time with human family members-in contrast to some breeds, such the Devon Rex, which are very keen on having other animal companions.

Cornish Rex cats have been trained to perform many acts, such as waving, shaking, sitting, and more. Many even enjoy fetch and have been observed picking up objects with their paws. They are especially receptive to training methods that include positive reinforcement, and they will readily accept treats in exchange for a job well done!

You will have a cat that is both entertaining and exquisite if you choose to bring this amiable kitty into your home. Just be aware that Cornish Rex cats will aggressively seek out their owners’ attention and affection, so be ready to have a real cuddling partner.

Common Health Problems

This “purebred” cat is less prone to certain illnesses and ailments than other cat breeds because of its varied ancestry. The Siamese, Burmese, British Shorthair, American Shorthair, and Havana Brown cat breeds, among others, have all been crossed to improve the Cornish Rex. These cats thus don’t have any particular health issues and frequently have long, robust lives. According to reports, many Cornish Rex cats live into their late teens, and some of them even live past 20.

Of course, they are more susceptible to sunburn because of their sensitive fur. So make sure to keep them out of the sunlight and, if required, use cat-friendly sunscreen.

Food intake and diet

Like the Cornish Rex, energetic cats often have appetites to match. But don’t let these rambunctious cats deceive you into believing they always need their food bowls refilled. These cats don’t have delicate palates, and if their weight isn’t controlled, they can readily gain weight.

Depending on your lifestyle and your cat’s appetite, you might free feed your cat. If you have a Cornish Rex that is constantly peckish, be careful to develop and adhere to a healthy meal schedule for your cat.

These cats will benefit from high-quality cat food, but they also frequently enjoy fruits and vegetables when given in moderation and with a doctor’s approval. These can be provided as treats or scrumptious augmentations to their normal mealtimes.

Breeds of Cats Not Listed Here and More Research

Do you prefer the Cornish Rex cat? Discover more about this distinctive breed from the other side of the water. You’ll discover that reputable breeders, Cornish Rex rescue organizations, and breed interest groups are frequently happy to share knowledge, advice, and humorous tales about these comical animals.

Check out the following cat breeds that are related to the Cornish Rex and helped shape it into what it is today:

  • Devon Rex Siamese Burmese Balinese

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