Manx Cat

… More Pictures and Information, but meanwhile this is what we’ve discovered for you about this breed:



The United Kingdom



The Isle of Man, located in the Irish Sea between England and Ireland has been the original home of the Manx cat for many centuries. Since the Isle did not have an indigenous feline species from which the Manx could develop, it is surmised that domestic cats were introduced by human settlers and explorers. Exactly who and when is uncertain.

An old story handed down throughout the century is that several Manx cats were aboard a ship of the Spanish Armada that was wrecked on the Isle of Man in 1588. The story goes that these resourceful cats were able to swim to land, Spanish Point, nearby and set up mousekeeping on the Isle.

Another story claims that the Manx was introduced by Phoenician traders who transported the cats from Japan. Still another says that cats arrived with the Viking settlers who colonized the Isle of Man.

Regardless of how cats got on the Isle, they presumably arrived with their tails intact. Geneticists believe that the Manx’s taillessness is the result of a spontaneous mutation within the Isle’s domestic cat population. Genetically, the Manx and other short tailed domestic felines are quite different. The Manx’s tail, or lack thereof, is governed by a dominant gene, while most other short-tailed breeds, such as the Japanese Bobtail, have tails governed by recessive genes. Given the Isle’s closed environment and small gene pool, the dominant gene easily passed from one generation to the next.

Inhabitants of the Isle, unaware of or unimpressed by boring scientific theory, invented more interesting tales to account for the Manx’s lack. One contends that the Manx is an impossible mix between a cat and a rabbit. Another claims that Irish invaders stole the cats’ tails to use for their helmet plumes. A third says two Manx cats were passengers on Noah’s Ark, but as they were the last to board Noah slammed the door on their tails.

The modern history of the Manx is better documented, if more mundane. The Manx was a well-established and popular breed, supported by an enthusiastic group of Manx owners. King Edward VIII was reportedly a Manx fan and often attended cat shows featuring the breed. The British formed the first Manx club in 1901. The Manx journeyed to America by the 1880s (and probably earlier), as Manx cats are noted in earliest American cat registry records. Manx cats were at first transported from the Isle of Man but, as the demand grew, the supply waned. Today, Manx cats are in great demand because of their rarity, but pets can be found at adoption organizations fairly easily.

Did You Know?

Did you know cat hair isn’t the cause of reactions in people sensitized to cat allergens? The primary cause is an allergen produced in cats’ saliva.   These allergens are spread to cats’ hair through grooming, which are then shed into the environment.

Appearance & Coat