The pixie bob may look like a North American bobcat, but this colossal kitty is actually a big softie. With his large stature — sometimes up to 22 pounds in size — and extra toes, he'll steal your heart as soon as you lay eyes on him. And this cutie often behaves more like a dog than a cat, preferring to walk on a leash and even responding to vocal commands. Read on to discover more about this fantastically unusual breed.

A Ferociously Fabulous Look

Originally bred in 1985 by a woman in Washington State, the pixie bob is large in size, with a thick, weatherproof coat. The breed was created because people loved the idea of owning a big, ferocious-looking kitty. These felines have a brown, spotted pattern on their coats, which can be long or short. They also have black-tipped ears and black fur and skin on the pads of their feet. Speaking of feet, their tootsies can have up to seven toes each.

Pixie bobs look like they have mutton chop sideburns — something owners can't resist. Their signature feature is their bobbed tail, which is typically no more than a few inches in length, although this can vary.

Not So Wild After All

Their breeder claimed the original pixie bob was a mix of a domestic cat and a North American bobcat. However, DNA testing has disproved this. Unlike what their exotic look may imply, pixie bobs have been shown to only have domestic kitty DNA. The breed has even been recognized by an international cat organization as a domestic breed — meaning you shouldn't have any issues with local ordinances or homeowners associations if you want to adopt one.

pixiebob cat laying down and showing off its paw

A Personal Name

Does pixie bob refer to a stylish haircut or does it mean a small bobcat? Neither. It's actually a reference to the first kitty of its kind, who was named Pixie. Ever since, all of these wild-looking felines have been called pixie bobs to honor the original matriarch of their line.

A Dog-Like Cat

Surprisingly, these wild-looking felines are actually endearingly canine in their behavior. They love walking outside on a leash, and they take well to training. (We recommend using treats like Meow Mix Irresistibles® — Soft With Salmon as a special training motivator!) Plus, they love water. In fact, you may find your pixie bob trying to join you in the shower! They are very dedicated to their owners and may follow you around like, well, a pooch.

The Quiet Kitty

Perhaps the funniest characteristic of the pixie bob is his voice. No, it's not fierce or wild. Most pixie bobs don't meow, instead speaking in chirps to their owners. These colossal kitties are actually pretty quiet, and are a great option if you're looking for a lovable furry friend who isn't noisy.