Kurilian Bobtail Cat: Characteristics, Personality, and Breed Information

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Kurilian Bobtail
Adult weight
8-12 pounds
Life Span
14-20 years
Playful, energetic, affectionate, friendly
Other Names
Kuril Islands Bobtail, Kurilean Bobtail, Curilsk Bobtail, Kuril Bobtail
Medium to large short-haired and long-haired
Affection Level
? Breeds with a high affection level want to give and receive a lot of attention, while less-affectionate breeds are not as interested in petting and snuggles.
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Activity Level
? Breeds with high activity levels will engage more in active play and demand more space and attention.
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? How well the breed tends to get along with cats, dogs, and other pets.
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? Breeds with a higher rating in this area tend to be gentle and patient, while lower-rated breeds may feel uncomfortable with children.
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? Breeds with a higher sociability rating will want to spend time with you all day, while less-sociable breeds seldom seek out human interaction.
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? Breeds with higher intelligence ratings are more curious, investigative, and easy to train. Less-intelligent breeds are less trainable but often laid-back and easygoing.
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? Breeds that score higher in this area have strong hunting instincts that make them great playtime companions.
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? Breeds that score higher in this area are able to spend hours alone, while less-independent breeds require plenty of attention.
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? A higher rating in this area indicates a breed prone to plenty of meowing and other vocalizations, while less-vocal breeds are happy to stay quiet.
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? Breeds with higher grooming scores require more maintenance like brushing and bathing, while lower-scored breeds are virtually maintenance-free.
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Personality and Temperament

With a thick, luxurious coat that's often beautifully marked to resemble a wildcat's fur, the Kurilian Bobtail cat is renowned for having a sweet, gentle nature. Like the breed's name suggests, Kurilian Bobtail cats have short to ultra-short bobtails. Kurilians have one of a kind tails. Sometimes compared with a snowflake or a fingerprint, no tail is identical to another.

Big, active, and intelligent, the Kurilian Bobtail cat has an intense play drive and a natural love for hunting. This breed is renowned for its fishing skill as well, so families with aquariums and tiny pets such as hamsters and guinea pigs will want to ensure that these vulnerable animals are kept far from the Kurilian Bobtail, which views all small creatures as prey to be captured.

Kurilian Bobtail cats typically get along very well with other cats, dogs, and children. They love to play, and anyone who is willing to spend time engaged in rousing games will automatically get this cat's undivided attention.

Despite its hunting prowess and high activity level, the Kurilian Bobtail cat loves to snuggle with its favorite person. These cats do have a tendency to choose a preferred companion, and they are also known to give other family members the cold shoulder when it's time to choose a lap for TV time or settle in at bedtime.

Meet other bobtail cat breeds: Japanese Bobtail Cat and American Bobtail Cat

About the Kurilian Bobtail Cat
Kurilian Bobtail Cat Care
Image Credit: https://cattime.com/cat-breeds/kurilian-bobtail










Kurilian Bobtail cats have no special nutritional needs, however it is best to offer a diet that is high in protein with limited carbohydrates. We recommend choosing fresh food or offering a commercial brand that lists real meat or fish as the number one ingredient.

The shorthaired Kurilian Bobtail will appreciate a weekly brushing to remove dead hair and cut back on shedding, while longer haired Kurilian Bobtail cats require daily brushing to prevent mats.

As this is a large, active breed, you may wish to teach your cat to accept toenail clipping from a young age. This will help cut back on damage to your clothing, your furnishings, and your skin. You may also wish to teach your kitten to accept toothbrushing.

This breed is exceptionally athletic and will show off its ability to reach high speeds, make sharp turns, and climb as high as possible anytime it is given the opportunity. Kurilian Bobtail cats are highly trainable, and may appreciate learning how to walk on a leash so that they may safely enjoy the outdoors.

Inside, Kurilian Bobtail cat requires multiple scratching posts, at least one sturdy cat tree, and plenty of exciting toys. These cats appreciate window seats that provide them with a view of the outdoors, particularly if a bird feeder is involved.

The Kurilian Bobtail cat has a reputation for excellent health and can have an exceptionally long lifespan that extends up to 20 years. No known genetic issues are present.


The Kurilian Bobtail is native to the Kuril Islands, which give it its name. The breed is also native to Russia's Kamchatka Peninsula and Sakhalin Island, which are located in the same geographic region.

The Kurilian Bobtail is a natural cat breed, meaning that it was developed by natural selection over time rather than via any kind of human manipulation. It has been gaining popularity throughout Russia since the middle of the 20th century. Still, the breed is not  well-known outside of Russia, Europe, and Japan. So far, it has not been granted official recognition by the Cat Fanciers Association.

International cat breed registries are taking notice, though: Fédération Internationale Féline (FIFe), The International Cat Association (TICA), and the World Cat Foundation (WCF) allow registration. Some clubs separate long and short haired Kurilian Bobtail cats into separate divisions while others allow them to be shown together.

Kurilian Bobtail Cat History
Image Credit: https://prettylitter.com/blogs/prettylitter-blog/kurilian-bobtail-cats
About the Kurilian Bobtail Cat
Image Credit: https://www.pawculture.com/breed-basics/cat-breeds/kurilian-bobtail-cat-breed/


A Kurilian Bobtail cat's eyes are walnut shaped, rounder at the bottom, and more oval on top. They are set at a slight angle, between the base of the year and the tip of the nose. The eyes should be about one eye width apart. All eye colors are acceptable.

Legs & Paws

The legs should be of medium length, with the hind legs being longer than the front. The feet should be rounded. Long-haired Kurilian Bobtail cats should display tufts of hair between their toes.


The Kurilian Bobtail cat's tail is its most distinguishing feature. It may have one or more kinks and or turns, and may be stiff or flexible. The hair of the tail often disguises its shape and gives it the appearance of a pom-pom.

The Breed Standard


The body is large, muscular, and well formed, with a generally athletic, well-balanced appearance. The chest should be broad, and the back may be slightly arched.


The head is large, with a modified wedge shape that features rounded contours. It is widest at the cheekbone level.


The Kurilian Bobtail has large, alert ears with elegant furnishings. Tufts may be present at the tips.


The coat may be short or of semi-long length. Long-haired Kurilian Bobtail cats should display a ruff at the neckline. The hair should have a soft, silky feel. Long-haired varieties should have a moderate undercoat.


All colors and patterns are acceptable. White is permitted and may include blazes, medallions, snowshoes, and any other white markings in any amount.


How much does a Kurilian Bobtail cat cost?

Kurilian Bobtail cats cost between $700-$3,000.

How big do Kurilian Bobtail cats get?

Kurilian Bobtail cats tend to be medium in size. A fully grown Kurilian Bobtail cat might weigh between 8-12 pounds or more and range in height anywhere from about 10"-14" inches tall.

How long do Kurilian Bobtail cats live?

The Average lifespan for Kurilian Bobtail is 14-20 years.

Do Kurilian Bobtail cats shed?

Kurilian Bobtail are long-haired cats, so you do have to expect a certain amount of shedding from this breed, but they don't shed as much as other cat breeds.

11 thoughts on “Kurilian Bobtail”

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  1. Leah m six

    We have a kurilian bobtail this information confirms it. She loves her daddy over me even though I feed her. We have a black kurilian bobtail we adopted and we live her. She has more personality than we know what to do with also she has multi-player of coats for winter

  2. Niki

    I adopted a cat and didn’t know she was this breeed until taking her to my vet. She’s everything described here and she has attached herself to my daughter and only associates with me for food and when she pleases. She’s the striped breed and she hunts all day n night. So in love with this cat

  3. Marjorie

    We have a lovely grey and white Kurillian Bobtail. She demands loving affection which is great. My son purchased her from Russia
    as a kitten and she is now 15 mo.old. She is very smart and very active; loves to play w/anything and loves water.
    The one bad characteristic (although humorous at times) is that she wants to be at highest point in the room to check
    it out and has broken some of my favorite figurines .She is also VERY fast.They definitly are climbers! I would not
    recommend this breed for older adults that have mobility issues. Their loving nature ,howeve,r is truly exceptional.

  4. Michelle

    I have 2. Siblings. Same mummy. Different dads. Pure pedigree. So every characteristic as above love them to bits. Beautiful, affectionate, clever, sweetest breed of cats ever. Maya loves her daddy. Nelson loves me his mummy. My life is blessed with these two fur babies. X

  5. Dale Peterson

    From this article, I know I have a Kurilian. He is absolutely beautiful and is so smart and affectionate and has that tail. He adores my dog and loves to play and sleep with her. She needed him when I first got her because she was a very shy and traumatized feral border collie/lab mix. She took right to him. He is everything you said they are. He loves to play and let’s me know when he is bored and ready to go at it. He is so smart, he knows how to maneuver the play stick toy with bobbles at the end. He does this and plays with my cat like he was the human moving the play stick. I’ve got pictures of him doing this. I love him to pieces and he is so affectionate. He’s like a little cuddle bug!!

    I got him when I saw a post on Next Door (in Arizona). He was obviously dumped off at the end of a street and I rescued him from there. I was going to try to find him a home or a kill-free sanctuary because I had a few cats of my own who were way up there in age, but after about 2 hours with him, there was no way I was giving this charming fella up!! He’s very demanding in a gentle way and very persistent. I tell him, “Joey, I think I knew why your former owners dumped you” and I thank them every day for that! He’s happy and very loved by my other cat too!!

    1. small mallory photoMallory Crusta

      I would search for “kurilian bobtail breeder near X” with X being your town. If you can’t find a local breeder, you may need to contact someone and have your cat shipped in.