Whiskers are not just for looking adorable, they also serve a functional purpose. Cats use their whiskers as a sort of built-in navigation system to help them navigate in the dark and detect small gaps or narrow spaces that may be too small for the rest of their body to fit.
In addition, some experts have theorized that whiskers may even have secondary functions like helping cats find and eat prey more effectively by detecting vibrations made by smaller animals, although more research is needed on this front.
However, not all cats have the same type of whiskers, and if your cat’s whiskers are curling instead of staying straight up in response to stimuli like they should, there could be something else going on.
This article details various health-related and miscellaneous major reasons why your cat’s whiskers are curling and what it means.
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Is It Normal For Cats To Have Curly Whiskers?
It is normal for cats to have curly whiskers, but you should be aware that some breeds of cats can have long, extra-curly whiskers.
If this is the case, you may need to groom your cat regularly to keep the whiskers under control.
- Another common cause of curved whiskers is hypothyroidism in cats. Longer and more curly whiskers are often a sign of this condition.
- If you see your cat’s whiskers curving out from the sides or from the middle in the wrong places, get them checked out by your veterinarian. This could be a sign of something serious like polycystic kidney disease (PKD).
If all other health-related causes have been ruled out and your cat’s whiskers still curve out of place, you may need to trim them. A plastic comb will work well for this job.
Genetics And Diet May Cause Curly Whiskers
When your cat has curly whiskers, it is not necessarily a sign that something is wrong. In fact, it is quite common for cats to have curls in their fur. Unlike humans who have straight hair, cats have naturally wavy fur that curves when they grow.
Curly whiskers are usually simply the result of your cat’s naturally curly hair. The only reason you might notice them more is if your cat has a lot of facial furs and you can see the individual strands distinctly.
There are several factors that can cause your cat to have curlier whiskers, including genetics and diet. Genetics play a huge role in whether or not your cat’s fur will curl. If one of your cat’s parents has curl-prone fur, it is more likely that your kitty will have it too.
Another factor that can play a role in curly whiskers is diet. If your kitty eats dry food frequently, he may end up with less oil on his skin which can make his fur more prone to curling.
While curly whiskers are not necessarily a bad thing, there are some things you should keep in mind when dealing with them. For example, if you notice that your kitty’s whiskers are curlier than usual, try not to rub them against things because this can damage the hair follicles and make them even harder to manage later on down the road.
Interesting Read: What Does The Position Of Your Cat’s Whiskers Mean?
Why Are My Cat’s Whiskers Curved?
There is a plethora of potential reasons that can lead to your cat’s whiskers being curly. Cats have curly whiskers, which are a result of their rough and unruly nature.
It’s no wonder that they’re so popular with cat owners. They can be a source of irritation if they’re not groomed properly.
There are several reasons why cats have curly whiskers:
1. They’re a result of their rough and unruly nature.
2. They’re caused by their fur being clipped too frequently.
3. They’re caused by the harsh environment in which they live.
4. They’re caused by the way they’re groomed.
5. They’re caused by their diet, which includes food that contains trace amounts of chemicals that cause hair to grow in abnormal patterns.
Interesting Read: Why Are My Cat’s Whiskers So Long?
Does My Cat’s Diet Affect The Curviness Of Its Whiskers?
A cat’s curly whiskers can be a result of the cat’s diet. Cats eat a wide variety of foods, including nuts, seeds, and fruits. Their diet is varied to accommodate their growth rate and weight. Some cats grow quickly, while others slow down.
Cats that grow quickly are often referred to as “bulky” cats. Bulky cats tend to be larger than average-sized cats, and they may have curly whiskers.
Some larger cats also have longer hair than average-sized cats, so they may also have curly whiskers.
Some types of cats have curly whiskers because they eat more nuts or seeds than other types of cats. Other types of cats may have curly whiskers because they eat more fruits or vegetables than other types of cats.
Some breeds of dogs also have curly whiskers because they eat large amounts of nuts or seeds. Other breeds of dogs may have curly whiskers because they eat large amounts of fruit or vegetables.
Cats with curly whiskers are not necessarily more likely to be overweight or obese than their average-sized counterparts.
They may just be more likely to have curvy tails and short legs because their diet includes more nuts or seeds than average-sized cats do.
Must Read: Top 5 Cat Breeds That Have Long Whiskers!
When Should I See A Vet For My Cat’s Curly Whiskers?
Here are 5 major health-related reasons why your cat’s usually straight whiskers may be curling:
Reason 1 – Your Cat Is Feeling Fearful Or Anxious
If your cat’s whiskers are curling, it could mean that he or she is feeling fearful or anxious.
Cats’ whiskers are a part of their “fight or flight” system, so if your kitty is feeling anxious, his or her whiskers may be curling to prepare for fighting if he or she feels like it’s a necessary defensive action.
Similarly, if your cat’s whiskers are curling because he or she is feeling fearful or anxious, it will be accompanied by other typical signs of fear, including dilated pupils, pacing, hiding in small places, and being very vocal.
Reason 2 – Your Cat Is In Pain
If your kitty’s whiskers are curled, there’s a good chance that he or she is in pain. Because the whiskers are connected to your cat’s nervous system, they respond to stimuli just like the rest of your kitty’s body.
This means that if your cat is experiencing pain, the nerves in his or her whiskers will tell your kitty’s brain that they are in pain as well. If your cat’s whiskers are curled, take him or her to the veterinarian as soon as possible.
Your veterinarian will be able to rule out any serious illnesses and treat your kitty’s pain appropriately. If your vet rules out any serious illnesses, you’ll be able to treat your cat’s pain more effectively and help him or her recover from the pain much quicker.
Must Read: Do Cat Whiskers Have Nerves?
Reason 3 – Your Cat May Have An Infection
If your cat’s whiskers are curling in response to stimuli, it could be due to an underlying infection. There are a number of different infections that may be present in your cat’s mouth or around the area where his or her whiskers are and cause his or her whiskers to curl.
If your cat’s whiskers are curled, take him or her to the veterinarian as soon as possible. Your vet will be able to perform a thorough oral exam and determine if your cat’s whiskers are curling because he or she has an infection in his or her mouth.
Your veterinarian may be able to treat the infection without having to perform surgery, depending on where the infection is.
Reason 4 – Your Cat Has Recently Given Birth
If your cat’s whiskers are curled and she’s recently given birth, she may be experiencing a condition called “wandering kitten syndrome.”
Cat owners who are familiar with this syndrome may notice that their kitty is disoriented or uncoordinated, especially in tight or small spaces.
This is because the mother cat’s whiskers are curled because she’s trying to fit her kittens through small spaces when they can’t fit themselves. If your cat’s whiskers are curled, she may be disoriented or uncoordinated, especially in tight or small spaces.
If your cat’s whiskers are curled, take her to the veterinarian as soon as possible, since this is a serious condition that must be treated immediately.
The vet will likely sedate your kitty to treat her and help her recover from wandering kitten syndrome.
Reason 5 – Your Kitty Has A Growth On His Or Her Face
If your kitty’s whiskers are curled, it could mean that he or she has a growth on his or her face.
Cats’ whiskers grow in a spiral pattern, so if your kitty’s whiskers appear to be growing abnormally or bent in a way that they shouldn’t be, it’s a red flag that there could be a soft tissue growth or tumor in the area.
If your kitty’s whiskers are growing abnormally or bent in a way that they shouldn’t be, it’s a red flag that there could be a soft tissue growth or tumor in the area.
If your cat’s whiskers are curled and you think that he or she may have a growth on his or her face, take him or her to the veterinarian as soon as possible so that the vet can treat your kitty appropriately.
Interesting Read: Why Does My Cat Eat My Other Cats’ Whiskers?
Do Curly Whiskers Ever Break Off?
Yes, much like normal straight whiskers, even the curly whiskers of a cat experience shedding and breakage due to various reasons.
From rough play to brawls with neighboring cats – your cat’s whiskers may break due to various reasons.
Just being curly does not change anything much about the way whiskers tend to respond to stimuli or break or shed. The normal shedding and regrowth of whiskers happen despite the shape of the whiskers.
Must Read: Why Do My Cat’s Whiskers Keep Breaking Off?
What You Can Do About Curling Whiskers?
Curling whiskers are often not a reason for concern unless you see associated issues that may cause your cat discomfort or suffering, despite the fact that seeing physical changes in your cats can be frightening.
You should probably leave the cat’s whiskers alone if you see that it has a new style but otherwise appears to be going about its business as normal.
Your cat’s whiskers shouldn’t be cut or straightened since doing so might make them less able to perform their normal functions and put them through further pain or suffering. As it may be quite unpleasant for them, you should also avoid pulling off their whiskers.
It’s better to merely take joy in the adorable new curly whiskers your cat has unless you find a cause to take your cat to the vet.
Which Cat Breeds Have Curly Whiskers?
Rex cats refer to a variety of cat breeds with curly hair. This recognizes the genetic mutation responsible for the wavy or curly hair that can be noticed in these cats. Horses, rats, rabbits, dogs, and cats are just a few of the numerous species that have the gene for curly hair.
The hair’s structure is altered by the mutation, turning it from straight to curly. All cat breeds that have rexed fur or curly hair are the consequence of a spontaneous genetic mutation.
There are just four rex cat breeds that are recognized by the major breed organizations, such as the Cat Fancier’s Association and The International Cat Association because this isn’t very prevalent.
Breed 1 – LaPerm
The LaPerm is a naturally occurring breed that originated from a litter of kittens born in 1982 at a farm near Dalles, Oregon. One of the kittens, who was eventually given the name Curly, was born hairless and over time began to grow silky, curly hair.
Later on, this kitten gave birth to her own litter of kittens with curly hair. A breeding program was created in 1992 since the farm’s curly-haired cats had previously been let to reproduce without restriction.
The breed’s wavy, permed-looking coat is what gave rise to the moniker LaPerm! After the breed gained more notoriety, there was a lot of interest in it.
Basic Details Of The LaPerm Breed
Lifespan: 10 to 14 years
Temperament: Active and Affectionate
Weight: 5 to 10 pounds
Breed 2 – Selkirk Rex
The Selkirk Rex, sometimes called the “Poodle Cat,” is a more recent wild breed that was found in 1987 in Montana by Jeri Newman. A litter of ordinary kittens contained a cat with curly hair and curly whiskers.
When bred to a Persian cat, DePesto had a litter of six kittens, three of which had curly hair and three of which had a normal coat; the mother cat had slightly wavy hair, and it’s thought that this gene may have mutated in the kitten, which was named Miss DePesto after a character on the (at the time) popular TV show, “Moonlighting.”
The Selkirk Rex was given its name in honor of Jeri Newman’s stepfather. As a result, the Selkirk Rex cat breed is the only one whose name is derived from a human.
Basic Details Of The Selkirk Rex Breed
Lifespan: 15 years
Temperament: Outgoing and Confident
Weight: 6 to 12 pounds
Breed 3 – Cornish Rex
In 1950, Nina Ennismore found the Cornish Rex in Cornwall, a county in the United Kingdom. She took the rare kitten from a mother barn cat because, as a Rex rabbit breeder, she was aware of its rarity.
She gave him the name Kallibunker. His curly coat is likely to have resulted from a spontaneous genetic mutation.
When the Cornish Rex and Devon Rex were bred, all of the kittens had straight coats, contrary to initial speculation that these two breeds may be connected.
In 1957, the first pair of Cornish Rex cats were brought to the country, and in 1967 the breed was officially recognized. They are now more well-liked in the United States than in their place of origin.
Basic Details Of The Cornish Rex Breed
Lifespan: 9 to 13 years
Temperament: Sociable and Athletic
Weight: 5 to 9 pounds
Breed 4 – Devon Rex
Similar to the Cornish Rex, the Devon Rex is a breed of cat with a short, curly coat that is exceptionally silky. Because of the sort of coat they have, they are frequently regarded as among the most hypoallergenic cats available. Technically speaking, they are not hypoallergenic.
In 1959, Beryl Cox made the first Devon discovery in Buckfastleigh, Devon, United Kingdom. Test mating disproved the initial theory that the breed was related to the Cornish Rex.
These friendly cats LOVE people, are frequently naughty, and enjoy playing. Devon Rex requires a lot of attention from their owners as well as toys and stimulation to keep them entertained.
When delighted, Devon Rex cats frequently exhibit the beautiful habit of wagging their tails. Because of their delicate fur, they shouldn’t be groomed too frequently because doing so could break off some of their hair.
Basic Details Of The Devon Rex Breed
Lifespan: 9 to 13 years
Temperament: Sociable and Mischievous
Weight: 5 to 10 pounds
Interesting Read: Can A Cat Live Without Whiskers?
Frequently Asked Questions
What does whisker fatigue look like in cats?
The inability to eat or drink from their normal foods is one of the most typical signs of whisker tiredness. Meowing as though something is wrong while pacing in front of the food dishes, grabbing at food and liquids in an attempt to remove them from the dish.
Why are my cat’s whiskers bent?
While limp and bent whiskers indicate contentment, erect, straight ones indicate anger in cats. Your cat may be afraid if its whiskers curl back against its face. Never ever trim your cat’s whiskers.
When people say their cat has curly whiskers, they’re usually referring to the hair on the cat’s face, which often curves as well. It is also possible for a cat to have curly whiskers on its body, but that is much rarer.
What causes a cat’s whiskers to curl could be one of many things. Some of the most common reasons why your cat’s whiskers curl include the cat’s diet, the state of its health, and the way it’s groomed.
If you notice that your cat’s whiskers are curling, you should get it checked out by your veterinarian to make sure it’s not something more serious.
Interesting Read: Why Are My Cat’s Whiskers So Short?