The Manx cat is believed to have originated hundreds of years ago on the Isle of Man, off the coast of England. Since many trade ships docked on the Isle, and all had ship cats, it is hard to tell just what the parent cat really was.
Since the Manx (or tailless) gene is dominant, kittens that inherit it can have a full tail, a short tail, a rise (known as a "rumpy riser"), or no tail at all (a "rumpy"). Breeders have found that it is possible to have all these tail lengths in one litter! Besides taillessness, the Manx is known for its robust and rounded appearance. It has a very round head and rounded cheeks, which give it a jowly appearance. Its back legs are much longer than the forelegs, causing the rump to be higher than the shoulders. The back forms a continuous arch from shoulders to rump. The eyes are rounded but set at a slight tilt toward the ear.
Manx are very playful cats, as a rule. They can jump higher than anyone could imagine, and it is not unusual to find them perching on the highest point in any room. They have extremely powerful hindquarters. Manx exhibit many doglike characteristics, such as retrieving and burying their toys. They will either be known as a one-person cat or the family cat: Once they bond with someone, it is difficult for many Manx to be happy in a different home. On the other hand, there are those Manx that readily accept attention from any human source!