The German Rex Cat Breed

Mar 4 08:23 2015 Angela Tempest Print This Article

The German Rex is a breed of cat related to the Cornish Rex, both of which are known for the distinctive curly coat.  This is caused by a genetic mutation that causes their fur to curl.  Here is a breed profile.

The German Rex is a domestic breed of cat that originated in the area that was then Germany and is now part of Russia in the 1930s.  It is known for its curly fur,Guest Posting which is caused by the same mutation as that of the Cornish Rex.

Breed history

In 1930-1, a litter was born from a litter of an Angora cat and a Russia Blue that had a curly coat.  The owner, Erna Schneider, named the cat Kater Munk and he went on to liberally spread his genes around the feral cats of Konigsberg, then Germany, now Kaliningrad, Russia.  While there is no clear link back to this cat for the modern breed, he is one of the first documented occurrences of what is now known as the German Rex.

In 1951, a Berlin doctor named Rose Scheuer-Karpin spotted a black cat with a curly coat on the grounds of the hospital she worked at.  Personnel said the cat has been around the grounds since 1947 and she named her Lammchen or ‘little lamb’.  This cat was the start of the German Rex breed.  In 1957, Lammchen produced a litter of four kittens and two of these were curly haired.

The German Rex was outcross to its Cornish cousins, which were suffering from skin problems due to a limited gene pool.  By 1968, emphasis had returned to worked on the breed for its own right and crossing with European Shorthair was experimented with.  By 1973, the FRG von Zeitz cattery had established a breeding program based on a white female crossbreed.

A separate line of Rex Cats appeared in Berlin in the late 1950s.  A tom named Schnurzel was believed to be a descendant of Lammchen and was used in the enhancement the budding breed. 

Description

The Rex is a medium sized cat that has a medium length body and slender legs.  The head is round and they have large, open ears.  Eyes are of medium size and the colour is dictated by the colour of the coat, which is silky and short with a distinct curl.  Their whiskers also curl, though less than in the Cornish Rex.  All coat colours are permitted for pedigree cats including white.

In personality, these cats are very friendly and bond strongly with their owners.  They are very intelligent cats that are lively and playful and are much the same as the Cornish Rex in their temperament.

Genetics

The genetics of the German Rex is the same as the Cornish Rex – it is a recessive mutation that means both parents have to carry the gene for it to allow the kitten to be a Rex.  It is a randomly occurring mutation with the German cats being the first documented case of but based on stories of children with curly coat cats dating back much earlier.  This recessive gene would have been carried by many of the straight-coated offspring of these early cats and would only breed Rex kittens themselves if two of them came to breed with each other at some point.

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About Article Author

Angela Tempest
Angela Tempest

I am the proud owner of four cats and love to write about the different breeds, their personality and health issues.

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