The Isle of Man (Isle of Man) is an autonomous land, a dependent territory of the Royal Kingdom, located in the Sea of Ireland between the British island and the island of Ireland, which is also home to many legends of sea gods and monsters. island.
It is also home to a cat without a tail, which is a strange and rare animal because it has no head and no tail.
However, by the mid-18th century, it was discovered that the number of cats without this tail gradually increased, so some people named them cat Manx after the geographical name.
Like other cats, the Isle of Man’s cats are very cute and look quite similar to the British Shorthair cats. Their hind legs are longer than their forelegs and walk like a rabbit. Manx cats come in all colors and patterns, although cats with completely white fur are very rare, and cats with original fur are even less. The long-haired cat variant is sometimes considered a separate breed, the Cymric Cat.
The Manx cat is a cat breed characterized by a completely taillessness, however, there are also some individuals of this breed that have a small peduncle, indicating a tail. Almost everyone who sees a cat of this breed asks, “Where is their tail?” This question also brings up many stories about the origin of this breed.
For example, at the time of the Manx cat catastrophe was late and as a result, when jumping into the boat, their tails were trapped and broke off when the door on the Noah ship closed, so they have lost their tails and passed on this trait to their descendants.
But there are many others who think that in the 1930s, the cats on the island were wearing a strange disease that resulted in a decline in more than half of the cats on the Isle of Man, the ones that survived the disease. Inbreeding and disease sequelae have resulted in mutations and inherited traits of the latter.
In addition, some locals believe that this breed was brought to the island thanks to the Spanish merchant fleet from the Far East to the Isle of Man in the 16th century. And because of the island’s geographic location in a relatively closed environment, so this tailless cat is less likely to be crossbred and still retain its original form on the island.
There is a lot of speculation about the origin of this breed in general, but there still seems to be no convincing answer. And the mystery of the origin of the Isle of Man cat has attracted many researchers to find out the truth.
Leslie Lyons, a zoologist specializing in cat studies at the University of Missouri-Columbia, traveled to the Isle of Man to collect samples from local cats. After a long investigation, she discovered that not all Isle of Man cats had absolutely no tail and of course could not classify them from the looks of them.
The classification should be divided by the number of tail bones. If a Manx cat has 3 vertebrae at the end of the spine, they are often called “no tails”, if it has 5 tails, it is called a “short tail,” and the rest will have a long tail. more, but when compared to other cats, the tail is still very short.
In addition, according to the degree of lack of tail, Marx cats are divided into four categories, of which the most distinctive type is the absence of any tail and the long tail type is almost similar to that of regular cats.
All four types have similar characteristics as the hind legs are somewhat longer than the front legs, average height from 25 to 38cm with a weight of 3.5 to 5.5kg, with round head, mouth and nose. are short and small, large round eyes and upright ears.
However, in the world of cats there is also another short-tailed cat breed, the Japanese Bobtail, which in general will look more slender than the Manx cat, the head will tend to be less rounded and more triangle-like, in addition Manx’s tail also looks plump and straight, while the Japanese Bobtail has a short and curly tail at its tip, with individuals curled like a ball on its back.
Lyons also discovered an astonishing fact that all cats on Isle of Man are descendants of cats without tails. Research shows that this cat has a gene that owns up to four trait mutations, which can produce a Manx cat with a tail or short tail depending on whether the mutation is visible outside.
The number of cats on the Isle of Man is increasing as mutagenic genes gradually prevail. This means that the characteristics of the tail of this species are easily passed down to the next generation.
However, Lyons also found something strange: if an unborn kitten inherited the gene from both parents, the cat would be very likely to die from being in the belly or just live a fever. Very short time after birth. Therefore, in addition to causing a cat to lose its tail, they are also considered a “cat lethal gene”.
Even if this gene is inherited from only one of the parents, the condition is still at risk, but only at low levels. In fact, for cats, the tail helps them maintain body balance and is also seen as a tool to communicate body language.
Losing the tail can be considered a certain degree of disability. However, several studies have found that the balance of the Isle of Man is primarily controlled by the inner ear and has little to do with the tail.
In addition, the Manx cat is highly regarded as a highly skilled predator and is therefore often sought by farmers to solve rodent problems, and is also the preferred cat breed. the ships.
Manx cats are considered to be social, easy to tame and motivated. An old local term for the cats on their island is stubbin. Manx cats have been exhibited in Cat shows since the 1800s, with the first breed standard published in 1903.
Today, the Manx cat is one of the eight most famous cat breeds in the world and the Isle of Man cat coin is one of the most popular precious metal commemorative coins in the world. Its beautiful design has attracted countless enthusiastic followers.
The existence of the Isle of Man cat may be a mistake in evolutionary history, but it is those mistakes that bring a lot of happiness to humans.