PetMD Editorial

Published Jan. 27, 2010

The Cymric (pronounced kum-rick or kim-rick) is often considered the long-haired variation of the Manx cat. Therefore, it shares the same place of origin: the Isle of Man. Its name is derived from "Cymru," the Welsh name for Wales, which is located approximately 125 miles south of the Isle of Man.

Physical Characteristics

Medium in size, the Cymric has a solid bone and muscular structure. It is nearly identical in appearance to the Manx Cat, except for the coat, which is long and thick. The texture of the fur is silky and glossy, and its wooly undercoat is thicker than the outer coat.

The most remarkable feature of this cat, however, is the absence of a conventional tail. Instead, the Cymric has a tail of various lengths: rumpy, rumpy-riser, stumpy, and longy. The longy tail, which is the longest of the four, is the least popular. The most popular type, rumpy, is virtually no tail at all: a dimple at the base of the spine where the tail should have existed.

Personality and Temperament

Cymrics are known for their loyalty and gentle disposition. In fact, it is said this lovable cat will purr its way into any stranger's heart. Rarely does the Cymric get into trouble, preferring to socialize with other pets, especially dogs.

The Cymric can be easily trained and taught to perform tricks. However, you should prevent it from reaching high shelves. While agile, the cat can injure itself from high jumps. The Cymric also is fascinated with water, but does not like to be dropped in.

History and Background

Long-haired kittens had been born to Manx cats on the Isle of Man (located in the Irish Sea, between England and Ireland) for generations, but were often deemed unwanted variants. It wasn't until the mid-1960s that intrigue for this type developed.

Before receiving its own name, the driving force behind a Canadian cat breeding effort, Althea Frahm, first exhibited the cats as "Manx Mutants." Other breeders choose the name Longhaired Manx. Its name was changed to Cymric in the mid-1970s by pioneer Cymric breeders Blair Wright and Leslie Falteisek, who named it after Wales, which is referred to as Cymru in Welsh.

The United Cymric Association was formed to promote the breed in 1976. That same year the Canadian Cat Association granted it Championship Status, the first of any major association.

Today the breed has been granted Championship status by nearly all major association, though the Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA) changed its name to Longhaired Manx in 1994. Long-haired kittens born to Manx parents can be registered as Cymrics in all major associations save the CFA.

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