The American Bobtail is a relatively new and uncommon breed of cat most notable for its stubby “bobbed” tail about half the length of a normal cat’s tail. This is the result of a genetic mutation affecting the tail development, similar to that of a Manx.
The cat is not related to the Japanese Bobtail despite the similar name and physical type — the breeding programs are entirely unrelated and the gene causing the mutation is entirely different.
American bobtails are a very sturdy breed, with both short or long-haired coats. Their coat is shaggy rather than dense or fluffy. They can have any colour of eyes and fur, with a strong emphasis on the “wild” tabby appearance in show animals.
According to legend, bobtails are the result of a crossbreeding between a domestic tabby cat and a bobcat. Although this IS genetically possible, the unusual tail is actually the result of a random genetic mutation. The breed was recognised by the International Cat Association in 1989.
Bobtails were brought to North America with the first European settlers.
A large variety of colors are accepted. The “wild” patterns, like the spotted and mackerel tabbies, especially in brown or silver, tend to be favored at the shows.The American Bobtail comes in both Longhair and Shorthair. Bobtails’ coat lengths vary from medium, semi-dense, and short (shorthair) to semi-longhair and shaggy (longhair). The longhairs have slightly longer hair around the neck, breeches, belly and tail.
All eye colors. There is no correlation between eye color and coat color.American Bobtails are a medium to large, bobtailed cat. It is a noticeably athletic animal, well muscled, with the appearance of power. Their tails are short, straight, and may be slightly curved or knotted.
American Bobtails are domesticated and loving, and make a pleasant family pet.