Selkirk Rex

Selkirk Rex

Selkirk Rex: Everything You Need to Know

Selkirk Rex is a breed of cats known for their unique, curly hair. Originally bred in Montana, United States, this breed has gained popularity around the world for their distinctive appearance and good-natured temperament. In this article, we will delve deep into the world of Selkirk Rex cats, exploring their history, characteristics, care, and much more.

History of Selkirk Rex

The Selkirk Rex breed originated in 1987 when a rescue cat with unique curly hair gave birth to a litter of kittens in Montana. The curly-haired kitten was then crossed with a Persian, British Shorthair, and Exotic Shorthair to produce the Selkirk Rex we know today. This breed was then officially recognized by the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA) in 1994.

Physical Characteristics

Selkirk Rex cats are known for their distinctive curly hair, which is soft and plush to the touch. They have a rotund body, round head, and short legs, making them appear stocky and muscular. Their eyes are large and round, ranging in color from green, gold, blue, or a combination of these. They come in various colors and patterns, including solid, tabby, bi-color, and calico.

The Coat

Their curly coat is their defining characteristic. Unlike other breeds, Selkirk Rex has three different types of hair: the guard hair, the awn hair, and the down hair. The guard hair is straight and outermost, while the awn and down hair are curly and softer, making their coat look tousled and disheveled.

Behavior and Temperament

Selkirk Rex cats are known for their laid-back, affectionate, and gentle personalities. They are low-maintenance compared to other breeds, making them a perfect choice for first-time cat owners. They love to curl up in a cozy corner and spend time with their humans, but they also enjoy their own company and are not needy.

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Training and Intelligence

Selkirk Rex cats are intelligent and trainable. They love to learn new tricks and games, making them an ideal pet for those looking for an interactive companion. They also respond well to positive reinforcement and are not easily intimidated.

Care and Grooming

As with other long-haired breeds, Selkirk Rex cats require regular grooming to keep their coat healthy and mat-free. They should be brushed at least once a week to prevent tangles and hairballs. They should also be bathed once a month or as needed. Their ears should be cleaned regularly to avoid infections, and their litter box should be cleaned daily.

Diet and Exercise

As with all cats, Selkirk Rex needs a balanced diet to maintain good health. They should be fed high-quality cat food, and their water should be changed daily. They also need regular exercise to prevent obesity, and their playtime should be at least 20 minutes per day.

Health Issues

Selkirk Rex cats are generally healthy but may have a predisposition to certain health issues such as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), a potentially life-threatening heart condition. It is important to choose a reputable breeder who regularly checks for genetic diseases.

Common Health Issues

Other common health issues that may affect Selkirk Rex cats include dental issues, kidney disease, and obesity. Regular vet visits and a proper diet and exercise regimen can help prevent these issues.


In conclusion, Selkirk Rex cats are a unique and lovable breed that makes a great pet for families and individuals. Their curly hair, gentle personalities, and low-maintenance nature make them a standout breed in the feline world. By giving them the necessary care and attention, Selkirk Rex cats can live long and healthy lives, bringing joy to their owners.

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1. Are Selkirk Rex cats hypoallergenic?

No, Selkirk Rex cats are not hypoallergenic, but they produce less dander than other breeds, making them a better choice for people with allergies.

2. How much do Selkirk Rex cats cost?

The cost of a Selkirk Rex cat varies depending on its age, breeder, and location. Generally, they cost between $500 to $1500.

3. Do Selkirk Rex cats shed?

Yes, Selkirk Rex cats do shed, but their curly hair may not be as visible as other breeds.

4. Are Selkirk Rex cats good with children?

Yes, Selkirk Rex cats are known for their good-natured temperament, and they get along well with children and other pets.

5. How long do Selkirk Rex cats live?

Selkirk Rex cats have an average lifespan of 12 to 15 years, but with proper care and regular vet check-ups, they can live up to 20 years.