The so-called "poodle-cat" has now been declared its own breed after spawning nine generations of felines.
The Selkirk Rex breed first began in 1987 after a rare genetic mutation caused a cat in Montana to be born with a thick, curly coat. That cat--named Miss DePesto after the curly-haired receptionist on the show "Moonlighting"--was affected by a gene mutation that didn't occur in the other cats in her litter, so every Selkirk Rex cat born today can be traced back to her.
The gene is dominant, which means the thick fur will be passed down even if the cats cross-breed. A new study by scientists in Vienna has been released this week, ramping up interest in the "poodle cat".
The Institute of Animal Breeding and Genetics’ Department for Biomedical Sciences at the University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna in Vienna, Austria released their findings, saying:
“Rexoid, curly hair mutations have been selected to develop new domestic cat breeds. The Selkirk Rex [or poodle cat] is the most recently established curly-coated cat breed originating from a spontaneous mutation that was discovered in the United States in 1987. Unlike the earlier and well-established Cornish and Devon Rex breeds with curly-coat mutations, the Selkirk Rex mutation is suggested as autosomal dominant and has a different curl phenotype.”