Breed profile: The Devon Rex

Natural mutation

The first Devon Rex arose out of a completely natural mutation. In 1960, Miss Beryl Cox witnessed the birth of the first of this breed in the English county of Devon. The mother was a normal-coated stray who roamed the area, but gave birth to a male curly-coated kitten who Miss Cox named Kirlee. This prompted her to start a breeding programme which ultimately resulted in the Devon Rex we know today.

Forever like kittens

devon 1.bigThe Devon is not a mantelpiece cat. They are incredibly inquisitive, active and lively, almost like they are kittens all their lives. These cats are incredibly people-oriented and will greet you at the door. They want to be around their human parents all day and will help you with everything you need to do around the house.

They are very intelligent and enjoy playing fetch with paper balls or toy mice. They are powerful jumpers and can often be found sitting on top of open doors. Curtains are climbing posts and burglar bars make fun jungle gyms.

Devons are very vocal cats. They will talk to you by chirping and chattering. Their vocal repertoire is unlike any other cat and they sound more like birds or monkeys.

Care and grooming

An advantage of the rex coat is that you do not have to worry about hair all over the house. They do moult in summer, which can result in their coats becoming a little patchy, but this grows back in winter. Kittens can lose almost all of their hair, but their coats improve again as they reach adulthood. Their coats can tend to be a little greasy and so they should be bathed every few weeks. The ears secrete more wax than other cats, so it is also important to clean them regularly.


  • Large, bat-like ears
  • Expressive, almond-shaped eyes
  • Wedge-shaped head
  • Prominent cheekbones
  • Barrel-chested
  • Muscular body
  • Wavy, woolly coat

Text: Veronica Knight

The full article appears in the April issue of AnimalTalk. 


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