Origin: United States
Coat Length: Rex
Body Type: Moderate
Appearance: This is a rare breed which originated from a spontaneous mutation of the American Shorthair. American Wirehair cats are broadly similar in appearance to their Shorthair ancestors. Noticeable differences lie in the coat, which is spring and wiry, even down to the whiskers, and the cheekbones which are markedly higher than those of the Shorthair. The coat may be seen in all colours except for colourpoint, the degree of wiriness varies according to the heritage of the kittens. Wirehairs are medium-sized cats of a moderate to sturdy build, their eyes are almond-shaped, medium to large in proportion to the head, usually golden but white Wirehair cats may have blue or amber eyes. The muzzle is medium-short with a strong chin, giving the head a squarish appearance, ears are medium-sized, slightly rounded at the tip and wide set. All in all, this adds up to an elegant, well proportioned cat.
Grooming Requirement: Some Wirehairs have sensitive skin prone to allergic reactions, so regular bathing is essential. Lighter coloured Wirehairs or those with a sparse coat may need sunblock.
Activity Level: This is an active and playful breed
Talkativeness: Very quiet
Temperament: Wirehair cats are playful, active and curious but also calm, friendly and tolerant. This adaptable cat will cope well with indoor living and may even prefer it. They do retain a hunting instinct, which they’ll demonstrate by chasing insects, or just by sitting at the window and observing the birds.
Interesting Facts: All Wirehairs today are descended from Adam and Tiptop, the male and female bought by a Rex Cat breeder back in 1966. The breed was accepted for competition in the USA in 1987 but they’ve yet to make it into UK cat shows.
Behaviour Toward Other Animals and Children: Wirehairs make great pets; they love people but also retain their independence. They’re noted for their tolerance towards children and generally get on well with other pets. Some are lap cats but others prefer to sit nearby. Some owners say that their Wirehair cats are in sync with the emotions of people around them and will seek to comfort any member of the family who’s feeling a bit down.
Common Health Problems: As with American Shorthairs, these are generally healthy, disease resistant cats. They can be subject to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
Lifespan: Average: 15 years or more.