Friday, November 5, 2021

What domestic cat looks like a bobcat?

There is one purebred domestic cat which was artificially created through selective breeding to look like the native American bobcat: the Pixie-bob. This purebred cat is the one to go to if you want to adopt a domestic cat that looks like a bobcat.

Pixie-bob photo by Helmi Flick.
Pixie-bob 'Proud Foot'. photo by Helmi Flick.

The Pixie-bob is meant to look wild. And the breed does have that naturalness about it which makes it look wild. This is quite a large cat and often polydactyl (more than the usual number of toes - see picture of Proud Foot above). 

Male Pixie-bob cats way between 14-18 pounds and for females the weight ranges between 10-12 pounds. There are, therefore, larger than usual for a domestic cat.

They are said to be quiet and friendly with a dog-like character. There was a time when people thought that domestic cats could mate with bobcats to create a hybrid. It seems that some people thought that the Pixie-bob was, indeed, a wild cat hybrid. However, this breed is entirely domestic with no wildcat DNA in it.

Pixie-bob Armani by Helmi Flick
Pixie-bob Armani by Helmi Flick

In the mid-1980s, a woman called Carole and Brewer acquired two cats that had the appearance of being a cross between a bobcat and a domestic cat. Note the word "appearance". These were not genuine hybrids of a wildcat and a domestic cat. 


Brewer bred from these two and produced a female called 'Pixie' who is the founding cat of the Pixie-bob breed. This cat had a long tail but was bred with a Manx cat (a short-tailed cat) to produce the classic Pixie-bob appearance. 

They are a well established cat breed but relatively rare compared to mainstream breeds such as the Maine Coon, Persian or Bengal cats, for example.

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