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The Manx Cat

Manx portraitPortrait of a Manx Cat

The Manx cat is one of the most recognizable cat breeds with the remarkable trait of being almost completely tailless.

It developed on the Isle of Man off the coast of England where it is believed that some common domestic cats may have been left behind from a ship wreck of the Spanish Amada in 1588.

A population of cats grew on the island and then a tailless mutation occurred which, isolated on the island, was able to prosper

Hardy, friendly and tractable, the Manx was one of the first breeds recognized by the CFA in 1908 and is one of the most iconic felines in the world.

These are bright, active and involved cats that are dog-like without being pestering, and uniquely exotic-looking without requiring any special care.

The tailessness comes in several classifications.

The “rumpy” has no tail at all and is the desired show specimen.

A “riser” may have a small amount of cartilage that is not visible as a tail, but can be felt under the skin.

A “stumpy” has a small visible tail, and

a “longy” has a tail over 2 inches. Only the rumpy and the riser are permitted in the show ring, but all Manx cats should be welcome as lovely pets.


Manx cat descriptive wordsHow Do You Describe a Manx Cat?

Manx Cat-Stats

Manx cat full


Manx grooming

The Manx cat personality is very friendly, straight-forward and intelligent. Decidedly dog-like in character, Manx cats are devoted, playful and involved family members.

The Manx cat is not fussy and will adapt to many situations, enjoy car rides, visits from strangers and an active family. This breed is often long-lived reaching the high teens and twenties in age, and they are notoriously wonderful with children.

Manx cats have been known to be vigilant about their homes and will even warn of intruders and other dangers.

Finally, they have long-heralded reputations as champion mousers so those who don’t enjoy the occasional “gift” take heed.

The Manx is recognized by the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA), the world’s largest cat organization. and is one of the most recognizable pure-bred or “pedigreed” domestic cat breeds.

These cats are round bodied, round headed and stockily built. The hind legs are noticeably longer than the front.

The coat comes in any color or pattern. The fur may vary in length, and in some breed associations the long-haired variety is shown as a separate breed called a Cymric cat. Regardless of length, the coat is thick with a plush undercoat.

Shedding may be high and regular grooming is desired. These are sturdy medium-sized cats that do have some breed-related health issues that require caution when choosing a breeder.

Because it is relatively active and enjoys interaction the Manx cat is a great family cat that does particularly well with considerate children..-Manx Cat Facts

Tiger color Manx cat
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Manx Kitten!Manx Kitten!

Manx kittens tend to be extremely adaptable and trainable. They will fall into the routine of the household without coddling, and actively form bonds with all family members.

Many Manx kittens prefer the company of children over even their own litter mates, and are a superior choice when considering a pet for a child.

As they are in adulthood, Manx kittens are quite strong, remarkable jumpers and athletic climbers. Kitten-proofing is a must!

Though the Manx is a cat breed that even most non-cat folks recognize, they are not all that readily available, Manx cat breeders are often hard to find, and a pure-bred kitten may be pricey.

Amazingly, tail length can greatly influence price, and you may find yourself a “longey” for a bargain, who still has all of this breeds exceptional characteristics.

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Head Shape: The head should be slightly longer than it is broad, with prominent cheeks, [also stud jowls in the male] which make it appear rather round. There should be a break at the whiskers with large, round whisker pads. Well developed muzzle, moderate in length and width, with a strong chin and short, thick neck. Profile: There is a gentle nose dip. Ears: Medium in size, rather wide at the base and tapering gradually to a rounded tip, with heavy furnishings inside. The Manx may have ear tufts at the tip which make the ears appear pointed; this is permissible. Ears are rather widely spaced and are set slightly outward so that, when viewed from behind, they resemble the rocker of a cradle. Eyes: Eyes should be round and full, set at a slight angle [outer corner a little above inner corner]. The ideal eye color conforms with the requirements for color of coat, but should only be considered if all other points are equal. 

Body and Tail: Medium to large in size, compact, with a short back that arches up from the shoulders to haunches. Sturdy bone structure. Stout in appearance, with broad chest; surprisingly heavy when lifted. Legs: The hindlegs should be longer than the forelegs, making the rump higher than the shoulders. The hindlegs should have substantial bone and should be straight, when viewed from behind. The cat should have muscular thighs. The soundness of the legs should be judged by watching the cat’s movement when stepping back into the cage. Feet: Round and firm, with 5 toes in front and 4 in back. Ideally, the cat should appear tailless. There is no penalty for a rise of bone or cartilage which does not stop the judge’s hand when the palm is stroked down the back and over the rump. 

Black Manx cat

Coat: The coat should have a soft, well-padded quality due to the longer open outer coat and the thick close undercoat. Shiney, clean and thick. The long-haired version of this cat is called a Cymric and is a seperate breed with virtually the same resume.

Pattern: All colors and patterns accepted.

Overall Appearance: This should be a medium-size cat with a round head and firm, full body. The rump rising up from the shoulder, topped with a bobtail or completely lacking a tail, is a distinctive, classic silhouette. Very friendly, adaptable to many living situations and a child’s best friend.


Manx cat white with red
  • The ideal show-quality Manx has no tail bones at all, and an actual depression can be seen in the fur where the tail would otherwise have been. This desirable dent is called a “dimple” !

Next cat from A to Z is the Munchkin  

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