The true origin of this unusual breed is steeped in claims, counterclaims, legends, and folktales. The total lack of a tail is attributed to everything from Noah catching the latecomer cats tail in the door of the Ark, to mother cats deliberately biting off the nails of their kittens to prevent them from future pain a the hands of invading armies, who hung the tails they captured from their shields like medals.

The Phoenicians, noted seafaring merchants of the ancient world, are sometimes credited with spreading the breed from Fae Eat to the Isle of Man, in the Irish Sea. If this tale were true, then the Manx would have to be a mutation or adaptation of something akin to the Japanese Bobtail.

A more likely origin of the Manx was on the galleons of the Spanish Armada. Some tailless cats (there were always rat0controk cars abroad the ships_ the results of mutation, made their way ashore when some of the Spanish ships sank near the Isle of Man in the late 1500s. There, isolated from other breeds, their tailless quality was passed onto new generations. Later breeders built on this beginning to develop the breed by careful crossing with tailed cats.

Whatever their beginnings, the residents of the Isle of Man are quite proud of their distinctive cat, so much so that they have minted a coin in its likeness.

The Manx is an even-tempered, loving, intelligent breed. It is comfortable with anyone who comes into the home, the place where the cat prefers to spend all of its time. Despite its indoor preference, the Manx is an extremely active breed happiest when involved in some activity, and an able mouser with lightning-quick reflexes. It needs to play as part of its daily routine.

The breed is recognized in any shorthair coat color or pattern; the eye color should complement the coat. The mark of a true pedigree is a hollow where the base of the tail should be that will accommodate the end of a thumb. These tailless cats are referred to as “RUMPY,’ while those with remnant tails are known as “Slumpy”.

The fur is short and dense. The body is stocky and muscular with powerful legs.; the forelegs are shorter than the hindleg. The head is egg-shaped and broad, with a short nose, large, round eyes, and a well-developed chin. The ears are medium in size and rounded at the tips.

Frequent, gentle brushing with a soft bristle brush is recommended o maintain the silky quality of the fur. The Manx is not at all finicky in its diet.

Breeding is a problem with this cat. Mat8ing two tailless cats result in malformed kittens that die before birth or soon after. Therefore, tailless individuals should be bred with those with tails.

Common standard faults are a small head, long tail, and lack of undercoat.

The Manx is one of only two tailless breeds. The other is the Cymric, actually a long-haired mutation of the Manx that first appeared in the 1960s in Canada.

See more: American Wirehair