Devon Rex: Cat Breed Profile

by catfood

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

The Devon Rex’s large eyes and triangular ears will undoubtedly attract your eye, but its charming attitude and entertaining antics will win you over. These tiny cats have distinct facial features as well as a thin, wavy coat with a range of colors and patterns. These cats, which developed in the early 1960s as a result of a spontaneous mutation, have been referred to as alien due to both their look and mannerisms.

Breed Overview

  • LENGTH: 18 inches long
  • WEIGHT: 6 to 9 pounds
  • COAT: Short and wavy coat with a fine texture
  • COAT COLOR: Wide range of colors including solid, tabby, and shaded varieties
  • EYE COLOR: Varies widely from amber, aqua, blue, copper, green, gold, hazel, odd-eyed
  • LIFE EXPECTANCY: 9 to 15 years

Characteristics of the Devon Rex

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

History of the Devon Rex

It is widely accepted that this type of cat originally appeared in the Devonshire region of England about 1960. A domestic short-haired female cat and a stray tom cat with an unusual coat curl got wedded. Due of his unusual fur, the resulting litter’s sole curly-coated kitten was named Kirlee.

Since it was believed that Kirlee and the Cornish Rex breed of cats shared a gene for a curly coat, Kirlee was bred to female Cornish Rex cats in an effort to produce kittens with the same coating characteristics of the Cornish Rex breed. However, the litters only produced kittens with straight coats. A different DNA mutation that results in the Devon Rex’s characteristic wavy hair and low-set triangular ears makes it a distinct breed, according to later study.

Through the creation of a more successful breeding program, the natural mutation carried by Kirlee was conserved. In 1968, the first Devon Rex cat arrived in the nation, and by 1979, the Cat Fanciers’ Association had officially registered the breed.

The Devon Rex has influenced popular culture as well. There is a story that Steven Spielberg drew inspiration for his fanciful movie characters like E.T. from his own Devon Rex cat.

Today, the Devon Rex is offered by reliable breeders across the country. The breed is a novel choice for a feline family member and is still uncommon enough to attract notice.


Consider Devon Rex

Be prepared to show this cat some love. The Devon Rex cat is amiable and happiest when among people or other animals. These cats will still be seen and heard despite not being as raucous as some breeds due to their outgoing personality and linguistic antics that are meant to grab your attention—and potentially a treat.

Thanks to their positive attitudes, they are exceptional at learning tricks, but their noisy personalities might make it difficult to control their energy. A well-trained cat that can perform entertaining feats is the reward for the work and perseverance required. Try clicker training to teach your cat to come, sit, shake, and other commands. This training can strengthen your bond with your cat and provide this intelligent breed the cerebral exercise it need.

Give your cat lots of toys, appropriate perches, and climbing frames so they can have fun. Keep in mind that this breed is renowned for preferring elevated spots for play or rest while preparing your home for a Devon Rex.

Only minimal human grooming assistance is required for the Devon Rex. Because the coat of this breed only has thin guard hairs that are vulnerable to damage, it is advisable not to brush your cat at all. Instead, gently wipe your cat’s fur with a moist cloth once a week. A cat grooming itself excessively or you could get bald patches.


Given that they occasionally have a thin, nearly bare coat, these cats enjoy cuddling with you or another cat. They are very gregarious with other animals, therefore it’s not unexpected to see them become friendly with other domestic pets, like dogs, when properly introduced and socialized. Whether you have additional pets or not, provide a comfortable bed so your Devon Rex may find a warm spot to rest.

Do not confuse their frailty with that of these cats, though. A healthy Devon Rex, on the other hand, has long, nimble legs and a lean, muscular physique. The short coat and prominent features give the neck and chest the appearance of being bony, yet this cat is actually a powerful jumper and will keep you on your toes.

One thing to be on the lookout for is ear wax accumulation. You may need to periodically wipe inside your cat’s ears to avoid a buildup of wax that could get impacted or begin to trap dirt and bacteria.

Common Health Problems

You should be aware of a few concerns even though this breed isn’t known for having many health problems. The Devon Rex is susceptible to hip dysplasia and patellar luxation (slipped kneecaps).

Another inherited condition is the Devon Rex Myopathy. Symptoms of this inherited disease frequently appear between the ages of three weeks and six months. The head and neck muscles are typically affected by this muscle weakness. A genetic test has been developed to identify whether a cat carries the genetic defect that results in the sickness.

The short hair and thin coat of the Devon Rex make it especially vulnerable to changes in the weather. Limit your cat’s exposure to the sun to avoid sunburn. These cats also need to be protected from the cold. These elements make Devon Rex cat ownership perfect inside.

Food intake and diet

Many owners of Devon Rex cats would admit that their pets are voracious eaters. Make sure your cat doesn’t rely mostly on human food for sustenance. You maintain a cat’s health and efficiently control its weight, make sure to offer it nutritious food.

Care must be taken to avoid overfeeding your cat. The Devon Rex is known for going to great efforts to grab a sandwich from the counter or hound you for a sample of your meal, which is similar to the begging behavior demonstrated by many dogs. Limit the number of treats you give the cat and resist giving in to their bribery.

Breeds of Cats Not Listed Here and More Research

Before selecting to add a Devon Rex to your furry household, be sure to do thorough research on the breed. Reputable breeders can tell you a lot about whether this cat is the best pet for you.

You might also be interested in learning more about the comparable cat breeds listed below:

  • Cornish Rex
  • Sphynx

READ NEXT: Infectious Anemia in Cats




You may also like

Leave a Comment