Every cat breed has its unique features, but some are just known for their short tails. They used to be very rare before but are now growing in numbers due to their rising popularity. And unlike their long-tailed domestic cousins, these felines can create memorable impressions due to their uncommon appearance.
The short tails are a result of a genetic mutation and can be of different shapes and sizes. Apart from the tail, even the appearance, attitude, and body of the felines vary from breed to breed.
So, if you are interested in identifying cat breeds with short tails and later owning one, you can take a quick look through this article to know everything there is to know.
9 Cat Breeds with Short Tails
American Bobtail Cat
American Bobtails have been around for nearly 60 years now and have quite a fascinating origin story. It dates back to some time in the 1960s when a child leaves a short-tailed, feral-looking tabby behind.
Mistaken as a mixed breed of wild bobcats and domestic felines, it was initially thought to be sterile until it mated with a Siamese. Its short-tail gene was passed on to half of its litter of kittens, and thus, a new cat breed came to be.
American Bobtails are humongous in size and are one of the largest domestic cat breeds in the world. They weigh around 13 pounds and have short or long shaggy coats. The color and patterns also vary slightly.
These cats have a wild appearance because of their lynx-like ears, toe tufts, and mutton-chop cheeks but do not let that fool you. They are a big baby and love to cuddle up next to you every chance they can get. But that does not mean they are not always up for a little fun time zooming around the house with and the kiddos.
The first image that pops into everyone’s mind when they think of short-tailed cats is Manx cats. These felines have little to no tail because of a naturally occurring mutilation that created the “Manx taillessness gene.” And before long, the mutation became widespread, producing a new breed.
Manx cats usually weigh about an average of 8-12 pounds and have a maximum height of 9 inches. They have a short, dense coat that comes in different colors and patterns. These intelligent and affectionate cats have excellent hunting abilities, especially their ratting skills.
Manx cats originate from the Isle of Man, an area between Great Britain and Ireland. Most people generally refer to the tailless Manx as stubby or rumpy and the shorter ones as “rumpy riser”.
These can be very active. Their stocky build helps them keep balance and move and jump around.
Japanese Bobtail Cat
If you have seen a cat with a bunny tail, then it is most likely a Japanese Bobtail. They can be very tiny and come with tails that are straight or bent. However, they can still pack in a lot of energy, loyalty, playfulness within their small frames.
And although they may come from different parts of Asia, they are mainly connected with Japan and its culture and folklore. It is believed that they have over a thousand-year history, and it is good luck if they have one of their paws raised.
Japanese Bobtails can be tiny, weighing around 5 to 10 pounds, and stretch up to a height of 8 to 9 inches. Their medium-length coats come in a beautiful variety of colors, such as white, black, cream, lilac, red, blue, and even bicolor and tricolors.
These cats like to spend time with people and look forward to playtimes. But that does not mean they get lonely when left alone. You will be surprised at their intelligence, especially if you give them anything with mental simulation to play with.
Some people often confuse the Cymric cat as a Manx cat. They have a similar build, just with a longer coat. A lot of cat registries refuse to recognize these cats as a separate breed and categorize them into Manx, specifically Longhaired Manx. However, some notable registries claim it to be a distinct breed which has long created multiple debates and arguments.
Even the Cymric cats share the same origin history as a Manx cat. They come from the Isle of Mans and possess the same gene as the Manx. The name “Cymric” is derived from the Celtic word “Welsh” which is used to denote people and animals native to Wales.
However, Canadians claim that the cats were first intentionally bred in Canada and are the original nation of this breed. The felines are very popular in the country and share the same sweet, placid personality as the people. They have a good relationship with everybody, and it is hard to damper their moods.
Cymric cats also have a strong prey drive and make good hunters. When they run around, their long hairs make them look like hairballs, so they must be groomed daily. Otherwise, their owners’ home would like the floor of a hairdresser.
Highlander cats can be very distinctive. Once you see its huge build, unusual ears, and short tails, you will know what cat breed it is right away. They are a mix of Jungle Curl and Desert Lynx, which are both hybrid breeds.
Highlanders are still fairly new, having been recognized only since 2004. They were a result of experimentation breeding gone right. Initially, they used to be known as Highlander Lynx, but the latter part was later dropped.
They have a wild look to themselves, especially because of their large bodies that weigh around 10 to 20 pounds on average, with a height of 10 to 16 inches. In contrast to that, their 2 to 6 inches long tail seems even shorter.
These cats, with their long or short coats, are available in a variety of colors and patterns. They have exotic markings, which play perfectly to their wild appearance.
This cat is also relatively new — its origin tracing back to Mount Baker, Washington some time in the 1980s.
While other bobcats in this list look like a cross of bobcats and other domestic felines, Pixie-Bobs look just like the miniature version of the wild felines. Most people just think of Pixie-Bob as a younger kitten of bobcats.
As for how it came to be, a woman rescued a large cat who, despite starving, weighed around 17 pounds. Besides, it was tall enough to reach her knees. Later, it mated with another cat and birthed offspring, and one of them was named Pixie. And since then, the breed has been known as such.
These cats make friends with all humans and cats and would perfectly get along with the rest of your family. If you are thinking of adopting one of these, prepare for a lot of clinginess as they like following their favorite people everywhere around the house.
They can be very bold and active when they want to be but otherwise are very easy-going.
Initially known as Thai Bobtail, this cat breed has been renamed as a nod to one of the most important rivers of the country. It is closely associated with Thailand even though the breed is believed to be developed in Russia and was considered royal felines in the 19th century.
The bobbed tails vary in length and can be of different shapes. This, along with their short, blue-hued, glossy coat void of any undercoat and icy blue eyes, creates a very uncommon appearance.
The cats do not need their tails for balance and are quite athletic without it. They love climbing and jumping around and are very sure on their feet.
Karelian Bobtail Cat
The Karelian bobtail cats come from the Republic of Karelia, which is a small country situated between Finland and Russia. Both parents must possess the recessive gene to pass it off to their offspring.
The tail is quite short, but it has longer hair than the rest of the body. Their coats are dense and silky and come in varied patterns and colors, covering their medium build. They fit in and have an easy relationship with all members of a household, including other pets.
Kurilian Bobtail Cat
Most people often confuse the Kurilian with the Karelian and assume them to be the same. But both of these are opposites in terms of their appearance. Kurilian bobtails have soft, silky coats, and no two cats of this breed have the same tails.
Native to the Kuril Islands near Japan, these cats are excellent hunters and thrive in the water. The cats are very smart and loyal and extremely kind.
They have a strong, sturdy build which helps them balance their body when they play around. Playing is one of their favorite things to do. These cats are people-oriented, outgoing, and never shy away from anything.
Cat breeds with short tails used to be very rare once but are now rising in popularity. Their appearance is a nice change from their longer-tailed cousins. And their playful nature and great companionship certainly help their popularity.