10 Things You Didn’t Know about the Oregon Rex

The Oregon Rex is an extinct cat breed. Given its name, interested individuals should have no problem guessing that it was a cat breed with a rex mutation. Something that has shown up more than once, thus resulting in the creation of new cat breeds more than once.

1. Extinct

For starters, it is important to note that the Oregon Rex is extinct. The last member of the cat breed is believed to have died in 1972. As such, there are no known members of the cat breed that still exist in the present time, though it is possible that there are cats out there that can claim some measure of Oregon Rex heritage.

2. Went Extinct Because of a Lack of Demand

In any case, there is nothing mysterious about how the Oregon Rex went extinct. There was enough interest for people to keep breeding the Oregon Rex for a few decades. Eventually, that interest started running out, with the result that fewer and fewer people started breeding fewer and fewer members of the cat breed. Theoretically, the Oregon Rex might have been saved if there had been a surge of interest at a late point in the cat breed’s existence. In practice, well, suffice to say that never happened.

3. Had a Rex Mutation

The “Rex” in Oregon Rex is no coincidence. For those who are unfamiliar, it refers to rex mutations, which cause the affected animal to grow short, curly hair. Said mutations have shown up a number of times in cats. However, they have been known to show up in other species as well. For example, there are dogs, horses, and rabbits that have been affected by rex mutations. Similarly, it is interesting to note that chickens, geese, pigeons, and quail can have rex mutations as well.

4. Wasn’t One of the Best-Know Rex Cat Breeds

Generally speaking, there are four well-known cat breeds with a rex mutation, which would be the Cornish Rex, the Devon Rex, LaPerm, and the Selkirk Rex. This can be seen in how these cat breeds have international recognition. Something that can’t be said for the other cat breeds with a rex mutation out there.

5. Related to the Cornish Rex

Having said that, it is interesting to note that the Oregon Rex was related to the Cornish Rex because of crossbreeding. Like the name says, the Cornish Rex originated in Cornwall, which refers to a region that can be found in Southwestern England. The Cornish Rex and the Devon Rex are often compared with one another, not least because the two cat breeds came from two bordering counties. However, the two aren’t connected because their conditions are caused by different mutations involving different genes.

6. Originated in Oregon

Regardless, it should come as no surprise to learn that the Oregon Rex traced its roots to a curly-coated kitten that was born in the state of Oregon in 1944. It took quite some time for it to be turned into a full-fledged cat breed in its own right. After all, a single cat doesn’t exactly make for the easiest starting point, meaning that there was a lot of crossbreeding with other cat breeds for the purpose of preventing excessive inbreeding. Still, the cat breeders were successful enough for the Oregon Rex to have been a full-fledged cat breed by the 1960s before fading out bit by bit.

7. Said to Have Had a Life Expectancy of 12 to 15 Years

The Oregon Rex is said to have had a life expectancy of 12 to 15 years. This wasn’t particularly unusual by feline standards. The exact numbers for a cat’s life expectancy are unclear. However, there are some studies that have come up with widely-used estimates, which tend to have averages of between 13 and 20 years. Still, this makes sense because while some cat breeds are longer-lived than others, they don’t show the dramatic differences that can be found between dog breeds. If anything, other factors are more important for a cat’s life expectancy. To name an example, indoor cats tend to be much longer-lived than outdoor cats, not least because the latter are so much more exposed to potential threats to their well-being.

8. There Are Estimates that the Oregon Rex Would Cost Between $600 and $1,500

There are websites that estimate that an Oregon Rex would cost between $600 and $1,500. However, these estimates are unreliable to say the least because they are based on things that can’t be tested. Regardless, this is nothing but a point of interesting speculation because as mentioned earlier, the Oregon Rex is extinct. Moreover, it seems safe to say that it will remain extinct because there is no real interest in reviving the cat breed.

9. Said to Have Been Affectionate Animals

The Oregon Rex is said to have been affectionate in nature. As a result, members of the cat breed were supposed to have been capable of bonding with humans within a very short period of time. Of course, the Oregon Rex is said to have had its personality issues as well. For example, these cats were supposedly capable of being stubborn under certain circumstances. Similarly, these cats were supposedly capable of chasing after rodents and other smaller animals because cats are cats.

10. Said to Have Been Well-Suited to Large Families

Curiously, the Oregon Rex is said to have been well-suited to large families. Essentially, these cats enjoyed human companionship. Due to that, if they were left on their own, they could become mischievous as well as otherwise problematic. Something that could be solved by making sure that there are more humans to provide them with human company. Besides that, it is amusing to note that their short, curly coats meant that they were also less likely to have their hair pulled by curious children. Suffice to say that is good because angry cats tend to make for serious issues in one way or another.

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