ABOUT THE BREED
When everything started.
It was 1950 precisely 21 July ...
On a farm in Bodmin Moor in Cornwall, England, when Nina Ennismore discovered an unusual kitten among her 4 brothers. Serena's son a domestic cat tortie and white with smooth coat and unknown father. The male was named Kallibunker, and his color was cream, was covered by a curly coat and unusual texture, giving him the appearance of a little lamb.
As the kitten grew, its differences became more distinct and extreme; Instead of a smooth coat, sturdy body and round head, typical of British domestic shorthair, Serena's kitten had a wavy coat, a slender body and a narrow head with huge ears, long legs and a long and thin tail. Mrs. Ennismore didn't quite know what to make of this odd creature, but determined to make him a real pet, so she contacted her vet. . .
Mrs. Ennismore's vet advised her to consult with Dr. Jude who acknowledged that Kallibunker was a genuine mutation, and suggested that Kallibunker should be mated with his mother to perpetuate the mutation.
As expected, in August 1952 of the three born puppies, two kittens were curly, one female and two males. (The female was of normal coat, the males were both curly, one of them died at 7 months; the other, named Poldhu).As Mrs. Ennismore was an experienced Rex Rabbit breeder and was familiar with the mutation, she made the connection in coat types and named the new breed of cats "Rex." Kallibunker was mated with domestic shorthairs, Burmese, Siamese, and other British, and the mutation was shown to be recessive.
As Ennismore had already sent some cats to some americans breeders and canadian: many were breeders of Siamese and were interested in mixing the breed to widen the bloodline. As Ennismore's cat population grew - she had over 40 cats with her - she found she couldn't sell enough kittens to pay for expenses. she therefore chose to put a number of cats to "sleep". Kallibunker and Serena were among these unfortunate elected. Poldhu, Kallibunker's son, suffered an unfortunate, though less decisive, luck when two vets performed a testicular biopsy on him to determine a type of gene. The vets had assured Ennismore that this procedure would "in no way affect" his reproductive capacity, but after the biopsy Poldhu was never the same. And ironically, the tissue taken from the cat's sample was lost in the lab, along with its virility.
In the 1950s, Brian Stirling-Webb determined to see the established Rex as a breed took over the rest of Nina Ennismore's squad. From 1960, however, only one male remained in Britain. The following year, Stirling-Webb became aware of another male Rex, a year-old named Kirlee, who lived in Devon, a county east of Cornwall. Kirlee's mother was a tortie-and-white cat who lived with Beryl Cox. Her father was a wandering male who lived in an abandoned mine near Cox's house.
As Kirlee was quite unusual, but it was not in Cox's interest to breed the breed, and he heard about Stirling-Webb's and his interest in the Rex, so he sent kirlle to him with the intention of generating more bloodlines. But when Kirlee was mated with Cornish Rex females to everyone's surprise, the born puppies were with a flat coat, and Stirling-Webb realized there were two distinct types of genes, and Kirlee became the father of Devon Rex.
Before ending her breeding, Nina Ennismore had sent several Rex to breeders in the United States. A female named Lamora Cove, Poldhu's daughter, before her unfortunate biopsy, was sent to a California breeder in 1957. Two Cove's offspring - Diamond Lil of FanTCee and Marmaduke of DazZling - are among which all Cornish Rex cats in America are descended. For a while the stock of breeders was scarce in the US, but with dedication, and commitment it changed ...
The Cornish Rex was an immediate success in North America. In 1963 the breed was accepted for championship by the Canadian Cat Association and the American Cat Fanciers Association. For a while, however, the Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA) did not recognize the difference between Devon and Cornish rex, although they genetically had different genes. CFA registered all Rex as Cornish until 1979, when she finally agreed to create another denomination for the breed as Devon Rex. Already in England the GCCF registered them separately from 1967.
From their inception, these cats have been bred to have a body type relatively exotic, or oriental. Curly-haired cats appeared by spontaneous mutation at different times and places, such as Devon Rex, so they are different mutations.