The Maneki Neko (literally "Beckoning Cat"; also known as Welcoming Cat, Lucky Cat, Cat Swipe, Money cat, or Fortune Cat) is a common Japanese sculpture, often made of ceramic, which is believed to bring good luck to the owner. The sculpture depicts a cat (traditionally a calico Japanese Bobtail) beckoning with an upright paw, and is usually displayed—many times at the entrance—in shops, restaurants, pachinko parlors, and other businesses. Some of the sculptures are electric or battery-powered and have a slow-moving paw beckoning. In the design of the sculptures, a raised left paw supposedly attracts money, while a raised right paw protects it.
Maneki Neko come in different colors, styles, and degrees of ornateness. In addition to sculptures, Maneki Neko can be found as keychains, piggy banks, air fresheners, and miscellaneous ornaments.
Due to its popular presence within Chinese communities it is frequently mistaken for being Chinese in origin rather than Japanese and is mistakenly referred to as a Chinese Lucky Cat.