What Does an American Bobtail Look Like?
The American Bobtail has a shaggy coat that can be short or long, and comes in virtually any color or pattern. Tabbies are preferred for shows because of their wild look. They have tufted ears and hind legs, big paws, and a powerful body. They usually weigh around 8-13 pounds.
Their most distinctive feature is their short tail, which can be half or one-third the length of a normal cat’s tail. Some people think it’s the result of crossing wild bobcats with domestic cats, but that’s just an urban legend, as you’ll find out from their history later in the article.
What Kind of Temperament Does an American Bobtail Have?
The American Bobtail is a friendly and adaptable cat who loves to be around people. They will follow you around the house, and even keep you company on road trips if you get them used to traveling from kittenhood.
They’re intelligent cats that enjoy learning tricks, solving puzzles, and playing fetch with their favorite toys. While they aren’t as vocal as some other breeds, you can hear them chirping, trilling and clicking during play.
If you want to show off your pet’s wild appearance, the good news is that they can easily be trained to walk on a leash. Don’t be surprised if someone asks you where you got a bobcat!
Are American Bobtails Good with Children?
Yes, American Bobtails are good with children. They are typically very friendly cats who will enjoy playing hide-and-seek and other games with the kids. As always, it’s important to supervise interactions between children and pets to ensure everyone stays safe.
Can They Live with Other Cats and Dogs?
Yes, American Bobtails can live with other cats and dogs. They’re very easy-going and tolerant of other animals. However, as with any cat, it’s important to introduce them slowly and carefully to make sure they get along. Each animal should have its own space in the beginning.
Do They Come with Any Health Problems?
No, American Bobtails generally live 11-15 years in good health. They aren’t known to be genetically predisposed to any conditions. Like all cats, they may develop certain health problems depending on their diet and lifestyle, but most of these are manageable if caught early.
- Obesity is common in indoor-only cats that are overfed, so feed your adult cat a limited number of meals per day, according to their needs.
- Urinary tract problems can develop in dehydrated cats, and many cats won’t drink water as often as they should. Feeding them wet cat food will help keep them hydrated.
Both purebred and mixed-breed cats can suffer from food allergies, so if you notice any symptoms like excessive licking, hair loss, or skin inflammation, try switching your cat to a different food under the eye of your veterinarian.
What Are the Grooming Needs of an American Bobtail?
The grooming needs of an American Bobtail depend on the length and texture of their coat. If it’s short and easy to take care of, a weekly brushing should be enough. If it’s long and prone to tangles, you’ll need to brush it every day.
These cats will shed heavily in the spring and fall, but you can keep it under control with more frequent brushing. Since they have tufted ears and toes, you may also want to use a comb or brush to keep those areas free of mats and debris.
Every couple of weeks, their nails should be trimmed. If you don’t keep them short, your cat may be more inclined to scratch furniture to wear them down naturally. Also, check their ears once a week and clean them if necessary with a cotton ball (not swab) dipped in warm water.
Where Can You Get an American Bobtail?
The best place to find an American Bobtail is from a reputable breeder. Do your research to find one that breeds cats for temperament and health, and ask to see the parents of the kitten you’re considering. One place to look is the Cat Fanciers’ Association’s breeder listing.
Since this is a rare breed, expect to pay more than you would for a common domestic cat. Kittens typically cost $600-1,200. It may seem like a lot, but remember that you’re getting a healthy, well-socialized animal that will bring joy to your life for years to come.
Adopting an American Bobtail
Contacting shelters or breed-specific rescues is also an option, but you may have to wait longer until an American Bobtail is available, and there’s no guarantee of the cat’s health or temperament.
What’s the History of the American Bobtail Cat Breed?
The American Bobtail is a relatively new breed, first appearing in the late 1960s. It’s thought that they may be descended from short-tailed cats brought over to America by English settlers, but there’s no definitive proof of this.
What we do know is that most of the early bloodlines have died out, and one started with a short-tailed tabby male named Yodie and a seal-point Siamese female named Mishi. Yodie was first brought to Iowa by John and Brenda Sanders, who found him during a vacation in Arizona.
His short tail was caused by a spontaneous mutation in a dominant gene, and was passed down to all of his offspring. A family friend, Mindy Shoultz, partnered with Charlotte Bentley to develop a breed from these unusual kittens.
They looked for other short-tailed cats in the United States and Canada to mate with them and become parents of a new generation of bob-tailed kittens. They favored big and sturdy cats, and over time produced the modern American Bobtail with a wild look and a sweet personality.
Is an American Bobtail the Right Cat for You?
The American Bobtail is a great choice for anyone looking for an affectionate and adaptable cat. They’re perfect for people who can spend a lot of time with their cat and want a pet that can keep up with an active lifestyle. Because they’re so open to new experiences, they’re a favorite among travelers.
This isn’t a good choice for someone who wants a low-maintenance cat, as they do require regular grooming and some training to live up to their full potential. And if you’re looking for a cat that can be left alone for most of the day, consider another breed, as American Bobtails are very social and need plenty of attention.
What Kind of Home is Best for Them?
The American Bobtail is a versatile cat that can adapt to most living situations. They do best in a home with people who are willing to spend time with them and give them plenty of love and attention.
They’re also fine in households with other pets, as long as they’ve been socialized from an early age. American Bobtails love to play and can get along with most dogs.
Fun Facts about American Bobtails
Looking for lesser-known facts about this unique cat breed? We’ve found these bits of information you may find interesting.
- While most cat breeds are fully grown within 2 years of age, American Bobtails may take up to 3 years.
- Because of their devoted and playful temperament, they’re sometimes called Golden Retrievers in a cat’s body.
- They were developed from non-pedigreed domestic shorthairs and longhairs, and don’t descend from any recognized breeds other than themselves.
- The breed has been fully recognized by The International Cat Association. The World Cat Federation, on the other hand, admits that American Bobtails exist but doesn’t allow them to compete and hasn’t set a standard for them.
- Other short-tailed cat breeds exist, such as the Japanese Bobtail and the Manx cats, but they all came to be independently of each other. In fact, the trait is recessive in Japanese Bobtails but dominant in American Bobtails.
Ready to Add a Bobtailed Cat to Your Home?
If you’ve decided that an American Bobtail is the perfect cat for you, congratulations! You’re in for a lot of fun and companionship. While you may need to invest a lot in a kitten and all the necessary equipment, you’ll be getting a healthy animal and a loving friend for years to come.
Have you ever owned an American Bobtail? What’s your favorite thing about them? Let us know in the comments below!
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