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Mekong Bobtail
Mekong Bobtail
A Mekong bobtail male.
Alternative Names

Thai Bobtail



Common Nicknames

Mekong, Mekong River Bobtail

Cat (Felis catus)
List of Cat Breeds

The Mekong Bobtail (formerly known as the Thai Bobtail) is a domesticated breed of cat. Originally named for Thailand, the country of origin of its progenitors, the breed is now named after the Mekong River. It is naturally distributed throughout parts of Asia and was developed as a breed in Russia.


Mekong bobtail kittens tabby point

Mekong Bobtail kittens.

In the 19th century, Mekong Bobtails were among the royal cats given to Russian emperor Nicholas II by Chulalongkorn, king of Siam.[1] The majority of the 200 royal cats gifted by Chulalongkorn had kinked tails resembling those of the modern-day Mekong Bobtail.[2] Other bobtail cats from Southeast Asia were also imported into Russia.[3][2] The breed is considered to have been developed in Russia,[4][5] and continued to be experimentally developed there, being bred with other bobtail cats, and possibly also with Siamese cats. The breed started to become more widely known in the 1980s, and in December 1994 a breed standard was drawn up by O. S. Mironova, a Russian felinologist.[4] The breed was recognized by the World Cat Federation in August 2004, and at that time its name was changed from "Thai Bobtail" to "Mekong Bobtail".[6][7]


Mekong bobtail (Thai bobtail). Chocolate point colour.

Chocolate-point Mekong Bobtail.

Mekong Bobtails have a glossy, short coat that can be any pointed colour without white markings, and large eyes which the WCF's breed standard terms an "intense blue".[7] The characteristic bobbed, kinked tail contains at least three vertebrae, but must be shorter than a quarter of the body length.[7][3] The breed has a slight although rectangular build, and the rump is higher than the shoulders.[7] Mekong Bobtails are medium-sized cats, weighing from 8 to 10 pounds (3.6 to 4.5 kg).[5] They have a life expectancy of 15–18 years.[8] The breed is also friendly, affectionate, and active.[2]