American Bobtail Cats

American Bobtails are known for being friendly and playful. They are also active and very intelligent. They are famous for being escape artists.

American Bobtail

American Bobtail Pictures

  • American Bobtail cat named Bob
  • American Bobtail cat named Neo
  • American Bobtail cat named Macy
  • American Bobtail cat named Cinders (Angel)
  • American Bobtail cat named Theo
  • American Bobtail cat named Bob
see American Bobtail pictures »

Quick Facts

  • 7 – 15 pounds | male
    7 – 12 pounds | female

Ideal Human Companions

    • Families with older children
    • First-time cat owners
    • Singles with other pets

American Bobtails on Catster

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Trademark Traits

    • Short, bobbed tail
    • Wild appearance
    • Active and playful
    • Comes in short- and long-haired varieties

What They Are Like to Live With

American Bobtails like affection, and can be vocal when asking for it. They get along with older kids and well-behaved dogs.

Things You Should Know

American Bobtails are often thought be related to wild bobcats, but a genetic link has never been proven.

This breed is good at getting out of carriers and closed rooms.

American Bobtails born without tails (which sometimes happens) may have health problems caused by a too-short spine.

American Bobtail History

The first American Bobtails were bred in the 1960s, and were the result of a mating between a short-tailed brown Domestic Shorthair with a bobbed tail, and a female seal point Siamese. Burman and Himalayan cats were also added. At this time, American Bobtails came in only in pointed longhaired coats, and had white mittens and a white face. (Although some people believe the breed has Bobcat genes, this has never been proven.)

Because breeding for these characteristics proved very difficult, breeders eventually began allowing any color and marking in their programs. The breed’s short tail remained its signature characteristic.

The breed is now accepted by The International Cat Fanciers Association (TICA) and the American Cat Fanciers Association (AFCA) as two separate longhaired and shorthaired varieties.

The Look of a American Bobtail

American Bobtails have short tails about one-third to one-half the size length of a normal cat tail. The breed also has almond-shaped eyes, which give them a wild appearance. The hind legs are longer than the front legs, and the paws are large and round.

Longhaired American Bobtails have medium-long hair with a double coat. The shorthaired variety is also double coated.

American Bobtails come in all cat colors and patterns, including tabby, solid and tortoiseshell.

Talk About American Bobtails 

A cat with dog-like traits

My Yoda was an American Bobtail. He was more like a dog than a cat - he followed me around, came when called and was the most loving cat ever. He didn't have a loud voice, just a little squeak but he let me know when he wanted something. He adopted me three and a half years ago, and he came with a little friend, Iggy, who he protected like a mother hen. Bobtails are wonderful cats, so smart, so loving and they get along so well with other cats. We lost Yoda to cancer four months ago, and I thank God for the two and a half years I had with him. I miss my precious boy every day.

~Judy T., owner of an American Bobtail