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Devon Rex & Cornish Rex. All About The Breeds

Updated: Oct 3, 2023

If you are a cat lover and cannot decide what breed to choose, you should pay attention to the Rex family.

The Rex Cast

The Rex cast is always in high demand because they have particular genetic mutations which give their fur such an extraordinary appearance.

The look is not the only thing cat-lovers go for with the breed. Their personality is also much appreciated. These kitties are adored for their intellect. By the way, they are not only geniuses but also very talkative.

You will never get bored with someone from the family. If you buy a kitten from this strain, be prepared that your little one will be very active. These little snoops will get into everything that is allowed and forbidden. They will also aim at the high points of your home. You might want to get a special tunnel and many different toys to keep your pet busy instead of getting in trouble. When they grow up, nothing much will change.

And this is the perfect trait if you want an animal that can learn tricks. The intelligence, swiftness, and playfulness of the cast allow them to remember commands and do tricks. These types even compete in agility events.

The most popular kinds of the breed are Devon and Cornish. People often mix them up. Let’s make this not happen once and for all time.

Background of Devon Rex & Cornish Rex Cats

According to the Cat Fancier’s Association, the Devon Rex kitten first appeared back in the 1950s. Its original home was Devonshire, England. The first baby was named Kirlee (probably this name was suggested by the curly hairs). After ten years have passed, the breed was recognized in the UK.

The Cornish Rex cats also appeared in the 1950s, in England, but in Cornwall. The first Cornish baby appeared because of a spontaneous mutation. The woman who found it dealt with rabbit breeding, so she had an eagle eye for something extraordinary. She named it Kallibunker. Back in 1967, the cast was recognized in the USA.

So, the Rex Devon and Rex Cornish thank for their coats to a recessive gene. In order to perpetuate the breed, it was necessary to make inbreeding. Since the genes between these two types differ, the crossing of these two types gives birth to a straight-coated litter. That is why the two types were recognized as independent ones.

Knowing the background of these two types will not save you from being confused about which one is which.

Let's get to know better how to tell who is who. Having read this article, you will quickly understand the uniqueness of the two species from each other and will definitely make a decision about which one will be your pal.

Appearance, Size & Coloring

Devon can remind of a slim elf.

This is because his wide ears are ready to catch every rustle. Cat Devon Rex also has a long neck, large eyes, and high cheekbones. An adult can reach 6-9 pounds in weight and 10-12 inches in height.

The coat is wavy, dense, and short. It is shorter on the head, neck, paws, ears, abdomen, and chest. Natural coloring varies. It can be:

  • black;

  • chocolate;

  • cinnamon;

  • blue;

  • lilac;

  • white.

Cornish has a muscular build and solid bones but looks slim. It weighs about 6-9 pounds and is 15-18 inches tall. His snout is more pointed, and his skull is more giant. Eyes and ears are large, and cheekbones are high. When a Cornish Rex cat walks, an arching can be seen on his back.

You will see a wavy and soft undercoat. The colors range from:

  • black;

  • brown;

  • chocolate;

  • red;

  • cream;

  • lilac.


The Devon Rex Cat is affectionate and friendly. It loves being around with people and will ask for petting and cuddling. It will entertain you with its talks.

Generally, an active, curious, and playful, dog-like Cat Cornish Rex, will search for warm spots and petting in cold weather. It will also follow your steps if it makes friends with you.

Playfulness and exercise needs

Curly Devon Rex kitties love climbing the trees and fetching things. Spend enough time with them, and they will not gain weight.

Cornish Rex kittens love getting into unexpected places (especially up high). Having impressive appetites, they are always fit because of their inexhaustible energy and playfulness.


Wash your cat Rex Devon’s hair and take care of its nails and ears.

Once a week, gently brush your Rex Cornish in order not to hurt it.


An average Devon cat lives around 9-15 years. The most common diseases are:

  • Calicivirus;

  • Patellar luxation;

  • Panleukopenia;

  • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

A 10-16 year lifespan is usual for a Cornish cat. Watch out for:

  • Rhinotracheitis;

  • Kidney disease;

  • Patellar luxation;

  • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

Generally, both types are healthy.

What are Devon Rex and Cornish Rex Common Features?

Even though the two cat breeds in consideration are similar, the difference is in details:

  • Both breeds are relatively uncommon.

  • They both occurred naturally without the help of man.

  • The home country of both cats is England.

  • Their curly hair is short.

  • They both were classified to the family because of the Astrex rabbit. This type of rabbit boasts a curly coat of fur.

  • The Devon and Cornish types are less allergic than different types.

  • Temperament.


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