This Is How To Know That A Calico Cat Is Female

Calico-cat--Cacts-about-your-friens

Calico Cat and Her Historical Background

 Calicoes are almost all female and if you, luckily, find a male, rest assure it will be sterile. (There goes the idea of breeding a rare new cat species down the drain)!  If you want a more in depth answer why calico cats are 99% of the time female, keep on reading, (especially the genetics part of this article).

Calico cats share their personality trait of Tortoiseshell cats commonly described as “tortitude”. They are spunky, sassy and very independent. The calico cat is also very loving, sweet, and loyal! So, if you are out on a search for a new cat because loneliness is not foreign to you, a calico cat is the perfect fit!

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Calico Cats are domestic cats well known for their spotted or particolored fur or coat. It seems like an oxymoron when talking about calico cats. Meaning; calico and breed do not go hand in hand, because it is not a breed. To be exact; it is a mix of three colors where the white part dominates and the other colors, brown and orange, serve as a supplement in patch form.

Whenever you find one of those cute and funny looking cats outside North America, the calico cat is more known under "Tortoiseshells-and-white cat" like in England.

Neighbor country Canada (Quebec) call her "chatte d’Espagne", which you guessed it ;), is French for (female) cat of Spain.

Japan calls the cat "tobi mi-ke" (triple fur).

The Netherlands name it the "lapjeskat" (patches cat).

You also may know the cat under illustrious names like "climanco" or "clouded" tiger when the cat has a diluted coloration as their brand mark.

What is Calico and Why is the Cat Named Calico?

cotton mask-calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat, female calico cats

White Cotton Mask

The word "calico"- is a plain woven textile made from unbleached and often not fully processed cotton. So, one might wonder where the connection to the colors and patterns on a tortoiseshell-white cat is coming from?

cotton mask-calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat, female calico cats

White Cotton Particle

However, when traveling back in time to the 16thcentury, India to be exact, we can visit a place called “Calicut”. Calicut (Kozhikode) is a city in the state of Kerala in southern India on the Malaba Coast. It was famous for manufacturing a brightly colored cloth. Calico cats are actually bright in colors. The historical answer to the question may be found there.

cotton mask-calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat, female calico cats

Map Of Calicut (Kozhikode)

Since calico states the color and not a breed, you can find this color combination in different cat breeds. From small too big, short to long hair, even hairless as in cat breeds like the sphinx cat. Obviously, if one or the other color might not be found in a calico cat, we aren’t talking about a calico cat.

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The Sphinx Cat-

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Shorthair Cat   David Warrington

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Angora-Calico-Cat (Longhair)

​What Are Tortoiseshell Calico Cats? 

Tortoiseshell is, according to the “Merriam Webster Dictionary”, the spotty, horny translucent, brownish covering of the carapace of certain tortoises or turtles (which have a black, orange, or brownish color. It is widely used to make combs, jewelry, and other articles.

calico cat, calico cats

Carapace

Looking at different pictures of calico cats, it is undeniable why the tortoiseshell-white cat was given that name. It is the asymmetry or irregularity of patterns mostly underlined by a black and reddish-orange coat.

calico cat, calico cats

Female Tortoiseshell and White Cat

calico cat, calico cats

Tortoiseshell Cat

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Tortoiseshell Calico Cats

In contradiction to the calico cat, the tortie has only a few white spots in her coat fur.

Four Genetically Tabby Patterns Can Define a Calico (caliby) Cat

Sometimes calico cats have a distinctive fur coat like; dots, lines or swirling patterns usually together with a mark resembling an ‘M’ on its forehead. If this is the case, the cat is called a tabby cat and the tabby patched pattern is called a caliby.

History Of  a Tabby

Tabby- drawing a historical line to its point of origin, we have to stop a few times along the history line and different parts of the globe. The word "tabby" derives from the French word “striped silk taffeta’, (tabis) = “a rich watered silk”. Continue tracing its roots, we are passing Middle French meeting ‘atabis’ (14th century) stemming from the Arabic term attabiya. Attabiya leads to a neighborhood in Baghdad, Attabiy (the reigning prince’s name at that time was Attab of the Umayyad Caliphate, where such silk cloth was first made.

Going a different historical travel route, we will find ourselves in Spain in the 16th century. The word ataviar means “to decorate or to dress or wear”, mostly implies very expensive and luxurious clothing.

So, the usage of the term tabby cat means “one with the striped coat”, started in 1690s later (1774) shortened to tabby.

,I think it is proper to say when listen to the word tabby, that it has a female notion to it. This is understandable given the fact that its reference to the feminine proper name Tabby as a short form of Tabitha.

Four Genetically Tabby Patterns Can Define A Calico (Caliby) Cat.

spotty Tabby Cat

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Some tabbies’ dark blotches of the fur coat are formed into oval or round spots. These run in lines, therefore are called interrupted mackerel pattern.

Scientist still stumbling in the dark if they are completely separate mutation or are a further development of the mackerel.

 The spotted tabbies show a faint trace of a necklace and have a line of spits, or sometimes blotches running from the neck to the very tip of their tail.

The Ocicat, Bengal, and American Bobtail are good examples of the spotty pattern.

                    

Classic Tabby Cat 

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The most characteristics that make a classic cat are the following:

Large swirls or blotches that end in a circular pattern or target at the sides (like a bull’s eye on the dart board).

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Usually you can find three lines run from the neck to the tail. Around the neck are wide bands of color known as a necklace. While the tail and the legs carry broad bands, you can find vest botches marked on the belly.

If you at any time happen to see a classic tabby, please study her shoulders a little bit. They probably remind you of butterfly wings. 

The Ticked Tabby

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It is not unusual to look twice at the pattern of a ticked marked cat to recognize her as a tabby. The reason being is they do not display the usual stripes, blotches, or swirls of the tabby. But looking closer at the hairs of the fur coat prove the tabby pattern. These are, in fact, light and dark colored bands and called agouti hairs. These cats are also having the famous ‘M’ marking on the forehead and a faint necklace.

The Abyssinian cat is a good example to mark her as a ticked pattern tabby, because their coat shimmers in sunlight due to the agouti hairs.

The Mackerel

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Mackarel tabbings might be in close corresponding to the pattern seen also on the African wild cat.

Many breeders state that the mackerel is the actual classic cat, because it is her pattern form that derives from the true cat origin. Around the tail and legs you can make out striped rings, while you will see solid or broken stripes down her sides and one or more necklace(s) on her front chest. The button has a double row of 'vest buttons'. 

How did the Tabby Cat Get their ‘M’form on the forehead ?

The Mother Mary Legend

The most popular of these legends tell us that when baby Jesus was lying in the manger he started shivering with a cold. Mary covered the baby with blankets, still he kept on shivering. Mary asked all the animals in the stable to move closer to the manger so their bodies heat would warm Jesus. The animals stood to the manger as close as possible, but baby Jesus remained cold and shivering. A small cat with tabby markings jumped into the manger and snuggled next to Jesus. Before long, the baby had stopped shivering and continued sleeping. In her gratitude to the tabby cat, Mary marked her own initial upon the cat’s forehead, so tabby cats will forever remind the world of how they saved Jesus from the cold.

The Mohammed Legend 

A legend from the Islamic world recounts that Mohammed had a tabby cat called Muezza, who once saved his master's life by slaying a snake that had crawled up Mohammed’s sleeve. Later when it was time to attend prayers, the cat had fallen asleep upon  Mohammed's sleeve. At the end, to avoid disturbing Muezza, Mohammed cut the sleeve from his garment. From that day on all tabbies were born with the ‘M’ marking on their forehead to remind everybody how much Mohammed loved cats, and they should always be respected.

What Is a Diluted Calico Cat?

I guess to describe it best; a white cat (kitten), plays in water colors instead of bright oil colors.

"For instance: Cream is the "dilute" version of red, blue the "dilute" version of black.

Dilute” in its simplicity means a color is less intense in its existence.

Beneath is a picture  of a cat who is, obviously, carrying the “dilution” gene. Instead of showing strong colors of deep brown in combination with an intense orange, the colors are much less dominant in nature.

-Female_Calico_Cat

The Dilute Calico cat is not rare to find in nature. You can recognize them by their grey, silver, and gold colors instead of the traditional white, black, brown or red patched coat.

Why Are Calico Cats Almost Always Female?

You find the answer to that question in their genes and correlation to each other. When we’re talking about calico cats you know they are always tri-colored as of predominate white with the diluting color mixture of orange, brown or brownish color in 4 different tabby pattern like forms as of:

- classic

 - spotting

 - or ticked. 

The x and y chromosomes play the major role to their colorful appearance. They are responsible calico cats born 99% of the time female. I hand over to a true expert in that field who studied the science behind the “why” calico cats are pretty much always female.

One thing is for sure, if you are the lucky owner of a calico cat you own a real treasure!

The Fire Gene

You love your calico cat because of her nature and captivating personality able to bring joy and love into your life! As you think about the most exposing trait of a calico cat, your answer might be her sparkling and striking looks. A lot of veterinarians like Jerold S. Bell call it the “fire gene”. 

Calico Gene

if you are talking to different veterinarians or experts in the genetic world of science, again, Jerold S. Bell, who is a Clinical Assistant Professor of Genetics at Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine in North Grafton, MA, will tell you that there is not one “calico gene”.

Calico and Tortoiseshell cats alike descending form a complex chain of interactions very early on in the prematureness of the kitten’s development.

Male and Female Chromosome

Each cat possesses 38 chromosomes matching each other nicely except for the male (x) and the female (y) chromosome. These sex chromosomes are responsible to make living organism male or female.

So, under normal circumstances and in a perfect developing kitten’s world, that kitten would obtain an x chromosome from her mum and either one X or Y chromosome from their dad. When the male cat fertilizes the female’s egg, he passes down either an X or Y chromosome to the kitten’s embryo to settle its gender. We know that a normal female has an XX-chromosome and a male has one  X- and one Y-chromosome.

In our case, the Y-chromosome (it is the one that determines maleness), is much shorter and carries less genetic information than the X chromosome.

Result:::The X chromosome pulls more weight in making out different physical traits. As we know, the cat's fur color is determined by a gene. 

The color orange results from its gene “O”, which is only carried on the X chromosome and makes it a sex-linked gene. The “O” decides or specifies to make the cat's fur either orange or not orange (colorless black). It is very interesting to know that the “O” gene in cats is the only sex-linked color-coat gene in a cat. Other animals also having a white fur coat (calico), are not sex-linked!

Ok, now that we understand why the calico has its orange color, let’s go further to explain the mosaic or tri-color correlation in a cat.

The Reason For The Mosaic Pattern

The female’s two X chromosome for sure carries some redundant genetic information. So, the big Creator, or whoever responsible for every living organism, created an unbelievable and efficient way sorting out which genes will be responsible for the kitten’s phenotype or physical spruce up. We humans (scientists) are responsible for putting a name tag on it. In this case we call the process random X-inactivation. 

Sounds snappy, right?

However, the whole process itself is pretty simple actually. One X- chromosome in each of the developing embryo’s cells is turned off.” At that point the X- chromosome is “compressed” to its almost non-existence (Barr body.) X-inactivation is random, irreversible and is passed down to all the cell’s descendants.

So, the composition of the cat’s later appearance is decided at this stage and descending from two different cell lines.

Number 1. This is the cell line where the maternal X-  chromosome was inactive.

Number 2. This is the one where the paternal X chromosome was turned off too.

And… voila! We have a mosaic!

What Has That To Do With The Calico Cat?

Let me remind you “O” is carried on the X-chromosome.

Now, Mr. Maternal and Mrs. Paternal X’s said: “This kitten will have orange!”, so, the kitten will have orange in her fur coat. Easy as that! At the same time, if both do not like the color orange or having a hard time to make a decision, than they leave it colorless, in our case, plain black!”

The fact that the kitten’s X chromosomes were inactivated randomly, is a dilemma of its own now, because we are having two distinct stubborn cell lines. One that’s set to produce orange fur, and one that is coded for black.

The result: You can see it in her fur coat and its colors leaving her with a random color combination of  of orange and black colors, set out by the random inactivation of her X’s.

  •   The Piebald Gene 

If the kitten in addition carries the "piebald" which is also called the “white spotted gene”, we have, voila, a calico cat with a bright color combination of red and black patches spread over their body. In case they were bestowed with the “piebald gene” by both of her parents, white will be the predominant color. If they inherit the “piebald gene” from only one parent, obviously, white will be much less dominant.

In case she did not inherit the “piebald gene” from neither one of her parents, white, of course won’t be in her fur coat. In this case we are talking about a tortoiseshell cat with a strong dominant combination of brown and orange mixture fur coat and not a calico cat with orange and brown patches intertwined into a dominantly white fur color.

You know, where rules are, there is at least one exception, sometimes even more, contradicting the rule, right?

There is no exception when it comes to a calico cat.

The Rare Process of the Creation of a Male Calico Cat 

Remember when I said that calico cats are 99% female? Well, in very rare cases a calico is born a male. Unfortunately with fatal consequences. 

Under normal circumstances a male cat has one X-chromosome. So, the one X-chromosome decides the color of the cat. If he likes orange, the cat’s fur coat will be that color, this is it, right?

Well, saddle your horses here! Like I said before. In 99% of the time this is the case, yes. But in super rare cases and at the early state of an embryonic development, a kitten's embryo could  have received a genetic error by getting in contact with one or even more chromosomes.

The result: This kitten's embryo will find itself in a diverse state of unusual genetic combinations, also called mosaics

In this already unusual and rare occurring anomaly, one of the most common manifestations is called the "Klinefelter Syndrome".

What is the Klinefelter Syndrome?

The Klinefelter Syndrome occurs, when the normal XY- chromosomes meet an extra X- chromosome and they link up. This can happen to all sorts of other animals beside a cat like:

  • dogs
  • pigs
  • mice
  • and even humans.

Ok, a male, in any kind of life form but in our case the cat has an X-chromosome to its already existing XY- chromosome. This conflict is lightly to present itself and it has to be dealt with. The same X- inactivation process like we already talked about in the prior color creation of the female calico cat. In this case; if one of the anormal X’s of the XY- male chromosomes love the color orange, therefore wants the cat’s fur coat to be orange but the other X chromosome we met and linked to does not like orange the outcome will be that the male calico will be sterile.

calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat,

Calico Cat BarrBbody

Where Do We Get the Evidence of a Male Fertile Cat?

Well, the answer lays in the chimerism process, a step further the mosaicism process, where the distribution of cells render the cat either partially or fully sterile.

If the sperms of this male are  (XY) he maintains his ability to give birth to kittens as a normal male cat can do.

One thing still is for sure! A male calico is super rare! So rare in fact that many veterinarians have never seen one, not even Bell himself.

According to Bell

29% male calico cats are Klinefelter’s (XXY)

18.5% are chimeric (XX/YY) individuals.

16% were fertile (XXY)

The rest are mosaic and chimeric individuals.

Which Cat Breeds are Registered at the CFA (Cat Fanciers Association) and Allowed the Calico Cats Taken from the Breeds Standards?

1906 The Cat Fanciers Association recognized the feline as a breed.

The following is a list of cat breeds registered list of cat breeds at the CFA allowed to have calico cats (taken from the breeds standards)

American Shorthair Cat 

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We write the year 1620. Mayflower dogged on the bay of Plymouth in Massachusetts. On board was a little feline, even though not listed on the manifest but due to its mouse hunting skills undoubtedly a valuable member of the ship’s crew. The little feline has, due to their mouse hunting abilities, already explored New Worlds even before becoming an invaluable member on the Mayflower. They explored places like Jamestown colony in Virginia, Spanish explorers to Florida and Vikings to Newfoundland. Descendants of this cat breed is a domestic shorthaired. Therefore,we do not have to do a deep search why the cat, as we  know of today, is called the American Shorthair Cat.

Though, after showing their hunting skills on ships, farmers, shops and houskeepers valued their mouse and rodent hunting skills too! As a result they kept them to protect their food from mice and rodents.

Their hunting skills made them even more famous after a newspaper credit them in 1634 thanking the cat for saving a New England colony’s crops from squirrels and chipmunks.

  • In 1895 starred at the first cat show in the United States.
  • In 1966 breeders officially called the breed American Shorthair Cat to differentiate the cat from random bred cats.

The Cat Fancier’s Association (2012) called it the 7th most popular breed of cat in the United States.

Size

7- 12 pounds​

Age

15- 20 years ​

British Shorthair

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I think, the British Shorthair cat gave Jim Davis his idea of Garfield.

Their complete chunky torso, broad face, and dense coat is how you also would describe Garfield when referring to his main traits. They are the pure blood version of the traditional British domestic cat.

De facto very famous though as the clever cat 'Puss in the Boots' and Cheshire the crazy cat with the big grin in 'Alice in Wonderland'.

Talking about the most familiar traits the “British Blue”, a solid blue-gray with copper eyes, a medium long tail is how you would complete a description of this breed. Breeders in general were not lazy in using them to develop a wider range of different colors and patterns including tabby cats. The British Shorthair cat is a cat with a real survival spirit, surviving two World Wars.

1967 was a year of celebration for the British Shorthair Cat since the American Cat Association recognized the cat officially.

The Fanciers Cat Association  was not in such a hurry but finally in 1980 followed their predecessors and gave the cat their earned recognition too.

Age

12 to 15 years

Size

12-18 pounds

American Curl

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American Curls are actually born just ‘normal  like every other kitten with straight ears. They start to curl at day 5, after born into an adventurous life. It takes 16 weeks till the curl reaches its peek.

The curl can be almost straight but show cats have a curl of 90º- 180º. Disqualification is possible when the ears are touching the backside of the head.

It was beautiful summer day in Lakewood, California back in 1981. Two stray cats found their way to the doorsteps of Grace Ruga. Grace Ruga welcomed the cats to stay with her. While one cat preferred her ‘boomer’ life in the streets and went back where she was coming from, the other cat extended her stay. Ruga called her new fella ‘Shulamith’ (Hebrew for ‘black but comely’).

What made the cat special?  Her funny ears

Grace Ruga seeked some advice from her sister, (Ruga was an Australian Shephard dog breeder), deciding to also breed her new friend with the goal of recognition for her cat breed. Non-pedigreed domestic cats were used in the breeding process to give the new breed a larger genetic pool and ensure their overall health.

Some people at the cat fancy community had concerns that Ruga’s breed might carry cartilage defects like the Scottish Fold cat breed. Fortunately for Grace Ruga, the concerns as it turned out were futile.

At the end in 1991 the American Curl was starting to find her official recognition by the leading cat fanciers associations.

Age

12- 16 years

Size

5-10 pounds

Exotic Shorthair 

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The Exotic Shorthair cat is an ‘development’ of the Persian breed. When looking for their main attributes, you can find their main similarities to the Persian in many ways. The main attribute they share with a Persian is their temperament, conformation and the flat nose and face.

Her short dense coat fur is what differs the most from a Persian. This cat is (using a car term here), an improvement to the Persian, which was developed secretly by American breeders back in the 1950s. They crossed her body type with other breeds like a Burmese and a Russian Blue.

I want to state here that I use the term ‘improvement’ losely, because it is not fair to put one cat over the other! Just to be clear! I do not want to open ‘Panderra’s box’ here when it comes to breeding in general, and using terms like improving or developing, because it disvalues the cat who, actually, was the offspring used to create a new breed of cat or other animal in general. Actually, it is a topic of its own to discuss if it is ethically correct to do so or not?

Size

Medium cat with the weight range of 7-12 pounds. 

Age 

12-17 years

Turkish Angora 

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The Turkish Van cat is a semi-long hair breed originated in the United Kingdom. There they were developed by a great variety of cats coming from different cities in Turkey, especially Southeast Turkey. Their count are few and is distinguished by the Van pattern.

It is the "piebald" white spotting gene in correlation with a partial leucism causing the probability of blue and amber eyes, or even odd-eyed (having one eye of each color as viewable in the picture). This makes the breed one of a kind!

To give probability no doubt of disbelief, we can take it for fact that they are descended from the landrace of all white Van cats (please feel free to dive even deeper when interested in Van cats by clicking the name), found near Lake Van, but writings of one of the breeders own writings state clearly that neither of the breeds are actually coming or were taken from that area.

Age

12-16 years.

Size​

5-9 pounds

Japanese Bobtail

The most obvious characteristic of the Japanese Bobtail is their missing link (bobbed tail). It reminds more likely of a rabbit's tail. As the name states, the origin of the cat is found in Japan and Southeast Asia.

In Japan widely known for centuries already, made its debut to the world stage more frequently. It is also famous for traditional folklore and art. You might know them as the cat who is waving at you from many Japanese and Chinese restaurants with their waving paw, sitting on each counter next to the cash register to bring prosperity and richness to the owner. In Japan the cat is called “Maneki Neko cats. Also lucky cat (mi-ke or tricolor cats, which is the most favorite of the Japanese.

The Myth and Folklore Behind the Japanese Bobtail ​

Who has not seen or heard of the famous Japanese Luck executing cat waving at anybody who visits either a Japanese or chinese restaurant or supermarket. So, to break her name in its word to word meaning it states: “Maneku Neko.

Maneki (き き) derives from the Japanese verb maneku. In Japanese it means “invite to pass” or “greet”.

Neko (猫) means “cat”.

In combination they literally says, “Cat that invites to enter”. The Japanese tradition has it that the cat shows with her waving movement “Come in, please, you are welcome!”

The maneki neko's actual existence is to bring fortune and prosperity to its owner. So, if you are not on a cat walk of success, you should arm yourself with one to make it happen in your life!

Since the cat is purchasable in any size, the amount of success might be growing with it. However, this cat has become a worldwide phenomenon and a lot of people swore that there is indeed not only a myth attached to the prize of the statue itself..

This cat is purchasable in various forms like piggy banks, key chains, pictures, jewelry, and even cars (so you can literally drive your way to success!).

Maneki Neko the Left and Right Hand Meaning

Different Interpretations lay behind the paws.

The most common is:

Left paw up- If the Maneki is waving with its left paw up, she attracts customers. Now you can see why you find a maneki in all Japanese or Chinese restaurants or supermarkets near the entrance.

Right paw up- If the Maneki Neko is beckoning with the right paw, it will attract more money and prosperity in any way to the owner and the business.

Meaning of the different colors

The cat is found in many different colors which leads to the fact, that she is so much more than just helping for prosperity success. 

The different colors stand for different areas of luck. With the color's change, luck chages too.

Calico: (spotted with patches of two other colors) symbolizes true luck to every owner.

Green: This is used to attract good health. What is the use of being rich but sick at the same time.

Red: This is to secure love and harmonious relationships. What is richness worth if you are unable to share it! So, you better keep a red cat with you making sure you can share your financial success with somebody you love.

White: White stands for happiness: Studies have shown, that happiness is actually the number one desire in everybody’s life. So, you want true happiness in life, than you better have one white Maneki Neko alongside.

Black: This one is for protection. If you are happen to be one of those who lives in constant fear a threat is lurking around each corner, better arm yourself with a black feline.

Gold: This one does speak for itself. It stands for wealth.

The Decorations on the Lucky Cat

As you probably realized (if you have already seen one, of course), they always have some kind of decoration around their neck. The decoration varies. It is either a scarf, a bib, or some kind of collar.

The decoration also indicates wealth. It leads far back to the Edo period (1603- 1868) in Japan’s history.

This was the time were the cats were very popular of the super-rich in society. They lived to brag with their wealth. They literally dressed up their feline(s) and take her for walks. Sometimes you can see the lucky feline holding a gold coin. It was a korban and its worth a ryo. Ryo was the Japanese currency before the yen.

To put it in today’s perspective. This coin is worth ten million ryo (an insane amount of money.)

This is truly one money cat!

Several Stories or Myths Go Along with this Money Cat.

One of them is about a poor priest, his cat, and a rich lord.

A poor priest lived in a small temple called the Gotoku-ji temple (in Tokyo) who loved his cat. He barley lived by food and worldly goods were non existing in his life.One stormy night overshadowed the area the priest called his home. A traveler was asking the priest for refuge under a tree. 

While he was sitting under the tree, the priest’s cat was standing in the doorway waving its paw as it was beckoning the man to come into the temple. The man followed the invitation and as soon he reached the entrance lightning struck down at the spot the traveler was sitting before.

As it turns out, the traveler was a very wealthy lord, who, as a gesture of gratitude, bestowed the priest with countless gifts and money.

The cat had truly helped the priest bringing prosperity to its owner and their temple!

Size

6-10 pounds

Age

9-15 years.

Manx

calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat. female calico cats

The Manks is missing something that all other cats still own. Oh, yes! It is its tail! It is naturally “bobbed”.

The Manx or often spelled Manks has its origin on the Isle of Man. Like the Japanese Bobtail the Manks is missing its tail entirely which is due to natural occuring mutation. But their hinded legs and round shaped head are other traits that make this breed unique.

They are known in all different kinds of colors and pattern diversified while the white part is more likely rare to find. The 'Longhair Manx seems to be a separate breed while still not 100% confirmed.

The Manx loves the hunt. That is one reason why they are the farmer’s best friend, helping reducing rodents problems or hunting mice and rats on ships.

They love the show and beeing looked at prize shows since the 1800s. The first breed standard published in 1903.

I love the legend that goes with its missing tail! In this legend there is no other than Noah to blame for the lost of the tail. The Manx was the last animal on the ship. When Noah was shutting the door about to leave the arc, the cat was still outside on the upper deck. Trying sneaking through the door, she was, unfortunately, not quick enough and, you guessed it, was cut off the tail! From this point on all future Manks where born tailless!

The Isle of Man (the origin of the Manx cat), is so in love with their cat that they decided to put them on a post stamp. But, not all Manx are actually short on tail.

Five Manx varieties are in existence:

1. The Manx without a tail is called a ’Rumpie’ and has no tail vertebral whatsoever.

2. The ‘Riser’- He has a bump of cartilage under the fur, but not a real noticeable tail.

4. The ‘Stubbies- They are having a shorter tail than other cats have ( probably half the size).

5. The ‘Longies’ – They are having a half to normal length tail.

Size

8-15 pounds matures slowly (5 years).

Age

​12 15 years 

Siberian 

calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat. female calico cats


The Siberian cat comes, like the name states, from the forests (taiga) in Siberia. This area, can get pretty cold. That is the reason why this cat wears its protective clothes in thick and long fur coat. The Siberian cat names the Siberian forests her home for over 1,000 years, which, of course, tags a lot of folk tales to her tail.

As in every culture, the cat bragged with her hunting ability. Therefore, she found many open doors by householders and shopkeepers alike, keeping mice and rats well away from stores of grain and other foods.

1996 was a big year for the Siberian cat. The International Cat Association wrote and recognized them in their official book to show their affection for that breed.The American Cat Fanciers Association did so too, in 1999.

If you happen to be a cat lover but due to the fact of having a general hair cat allergy, this cat might be the one that, actually, could become your best friend. Why? She has the reputation for being hypoallergenic.

Size

The cat weighs around 8 to 20 pounds, sometimes even more.

Age

11-15 years

Turkish Van

calico cat, female calico cats

Turkish Van-

The cat’s name is originated in Ankara (formerly Angora). For centuries these special breeds have been attractive souvenirs for traders and merchants of Ankara alike. They took them and spread their breed over Europe. According to a widely acknowledged theory states, that Vikings had brought them from Turkey more than a thousand years ago.

Unfortunately over time this special breed became more and more scarce till it almost lost its chance of survival. It was the Ankara Zoo we have to thank for its program to save this beautiful breed.

In 1954, the breed was brought to the United States, where it slowly but distinctly found interest under many different breeders till, finally, in the 1960s the CFA (Cat Fanciers Association) acknowledged them and registered them officially (1968).

They registered the white Turkish Angora in 1972 and additionally in 1978 the colored Angora too. The Turkish Van is a semi-longhair breed, developed in the United Kingdom with its descendants coming from many surrounded towns of Ankara, Turkey.

Size

10- 18 pounds when reached complete maturity.

Age

11- 14 years 

Norwegian Forest Cat 

calico cat, calico cats. female calico cat, female calico cats

Like the name already states the Norwegian Cat has its roots back in Norway as more than a couple hundred years. The cat has lots of different legends tagged to their tail. One along others is that the Norwegian goddess Freya’s  giant cats pulled heir chariot. Fact is, this breed’s origins still remains a mystery.

Many breeders assume that they are descendants of longhair cats in the Turkish area. Scandinavian warriors who fought under the Byzantine Empire brought them back home. Another theory is that the cat has their descendants in the Siberian cat from Russia.

However their origin, the skogcatt (the Norwegian word that translates as “forest cat”, survived its breed by true wit and exquisite mouse and rat hunter gaining them a lot of open doors and shelter in diverse barns, ranches, stables or private homes.

Being once a crowned star at many cat shows back in 1938, World War II, unfortunately, interrupted the idea to breed and develop them further. But their survival instinct helped this breed.

In 1977 they finally found their recognition and were registered as a breed in the Europe’s Federation Inernationale Feline. Two years, a pair of NFC’s was exported to the Unites Staes for the first time. So, its popularity and continuing grows was enevitable to the joy of many cat owners who love to have a big fury cat.

Size

This breed is a grow in progress from its time of birth. It takes them over 5 years till, finally, reaches its maximum size. They can weigh around 13 to 22 pounds.

Age

8-15 years 

Maine Coon

Maine_Coon_cat_by_Tomitheos- calico cat. calico cats. female calico cat, female calico cats

by_Tomitheos

Shepherd Ross acquired a female kitten and named her Snooks. After Snooks had also found the love of her life and gave birth to kittens, one of them was bred to a British Shorthair. 

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Maine, New England, 19th century. The Maine Coon's undeniable mouse and rats' hunting skills made them  famous in households and farms alike. So famous actually, that the City acknowledged them naming the feline Maine Coon.

In the 19th century. Due to speculative stories how he landed in Maine is that Vikings have brought him to North America centuries before Columbus even sailed and discovered new worlds.

Another possible folklore is that Marie Antoinette (doomed queen) sent to North America  brought the cat along. But like already stated, this is all speculation and not be written in stone.

First time reference of this breed was in 1861 about a black and white cat named Capatain Jenks of the Horse Marines.

1895 a Madison Square Garden beauty cat show crowns a Maine Coon for the first time. 

In 1906, the year the Cat Fanciers Association opens their doors to the public and register Molly Bond as cat number 5.

The invasion of the Siamese and Persian cats drops the popularity level of the Maine Coon.

But 1960s was a celebration era, the breed could celebrate a turnover to the better because of regained popularity. Today, the Maine Coon brags with its King size torso world wide acknowledgement.

Size

9-18 poinds. They take up to 5 years before they reach their full maturity.

Age

9-15 years.  

Sphinx

calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat,

The Sphinx loves attention, so she is suited perfectly  for her unique looks.

Elizabeth, a black and white domestic cat in Toronto, Canada gave birth to the litter of five kittens. One looked quite different. Due to a gene mutation the torso was complete furless. The owner of the cat knew how special their kittens were and started trying to reproduce it. Under those cats were the Devon Rex cat. The outcome of this reproduction was some were indeed furless, while others not.

Canadian cat, that was her name before the International Cat Association recognized the Sphinx.

Breeders pondered about a more sophisticated name and at the end settled with Sphinx, because she reminded them of the gigantic Egyptian Sphinx statue in every way.

She is also recognized by the American Cat Fanciers Association. I guess they reached stardom by landing a big Hollywood movie role as Mr. Wigglesworth (Ted NudeGent) in the Austin Powers series.

Size

The Sphynx is a medium-size cat. She typically weighs 6 to 12 pounds.

Age

8 to 14 years                                                               

scotish fold

calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat,

The Scottish Fold Cat loves the Attention effect! As a true warm hearted fella, she also has a unique but fragile trait she can brag with!

It is the way she carries her ears! Due to a natural genetic mutation inherited by a cat in Scotland with the name Susie. Susie was not only famous for her unique ears, as much more of a skilled mouser in the barn in Scotland’s Tayside region.

William Ross, a shepherd, found the little feline in one of those barns. Susie's  love to Tom, a male cat from the neighborhood could not resist her undeniable charm, and it so happened that shortly after she gave birth to kittens.

This was the dawn of development of what was first named “lop-eared cats” and later on The Scottish Folds.

She passed the long hair and fold’s gene mutation on to her descendants. The longhaired breed is known as the Highland Fold.

The First Scottish Folds made their way to the States in 1971. After a few years into the 1970s she found recognition by most cat associations in North America.

While recognized by most North American cat associations, the Scots are a little bit stricter in their recognition. Their concerns are; the folded ears might lead to ear infections or even deafness in combination with the related cartilage problem.

Age

11- 14  years

Size

8- 15 pounds

Cornish Rex

calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat,

As you probably know, King Arthur and the famous roundtable has its roots there, which laid the ground stone for some horrible Hollywood movies who did not, in any way, true diligent justice to a diverse and beautiful country.

However, the Cornish Rex calls the birthplace of the legendary King Arthur as her home of origin. It was in 1950, Ennismore and Winfrid Macallister had a kitten born to a calico Tortoiseshell cat named Serena (Spanish word for mermaid).

Kallikunker was different from their sibling kittens. While all other 4 cats were shorthaired, Kallikunker contradicted that trait. The result of a spontaneous natural mutation (the x-cat effect!) The father remains unidentified. Some say it was Ginger, a shorthaired tabby cat and brother of Serena (like in the human world incest may lead to gene mutation).

Ennismore loved the gene mutated cat and started to find out how to establish the trait to reproduce it in future breeds. By doing so, she actually found success with one of their kittens named Poldhu. Poldhu carried the gene mutation to the United States with success! Even though with the lack of breeding stock, the breeders crossed the cats with the Siamese cat. Sham Pain Chas, son of Poldhu, fathered a litter back in England keeping the breed alive in the country of origin.

Even East Germany had a similar cat with a mutation gene, which was compatible with the Cornish Rex helping to keep the breed alive.

1963 was a big year for the Cornish Rex. The Canadian Cat Association and The American Cat Fanciers Association alike recognized the cat.

1964 The Cat Fanciers Association followed their predecessors by recognizing the cat officially.

Size

6- 10 pounds

Age

11- 15 years

Devon Rex

calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat,

The Devon Rex is a very affectionate cat who loves to spend hours playing and goofing around.

She was the first cat to serve breeders as reproduction and they named her Devon Rex as of Devonshire, the place the cat opened her eyes the first time. Rex derives from the fact that her coat fur texture reminded the breeders of a rex rabbit’s fur coat.

Devon, England back in 1959. Once thought the Devon Rex shares  their special trait with the Cornish Rex, who has her origin in Cornwall, England turned out to be baseless. Breeders thought she shares her gene mutation with the Cornish Rex (breeders discovered the feline more than a decade before the Devon Rex.) Test breedings proofed her uniqueness. Little is known of the cat other than the first publicly known cat caring the gene mutation was Kirlee. Her mother, a stray cat and the father probably too, who as the kitten Kirlee had a curly coat fur.

1968 found her way all the way to the United States in . There the Cat Fanciers Association recognized her in 1979. 

Size 

5-10 pounds

Age

9- 15 years

La Perm

calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat,

If you would interview a La perm asking about their greatest trait, they would probably state their unique fur coat. Why is it unique? Reason being is, that it is a natural gene mutation accident.

We write the year 1982, Dalles, Oregon. All takes place in a little barn randomly in the State of Oregon. Speedy, a brownish colored tabby cat, gave birth to kittens. One of those little thunderstrucking cute little felines did not quite fit the general description of a cat. You can definitely mark her as a black swan under kitten’s sun. Her appearance, giving credits to eyewitnesses outer terrastrial life existence a second thought!

Why?

She was bald from head to pawn, and judging her ears, she could easily have made herself famous becoming the first bat cat. With her rapidly body growth she continued to let people in disbelief that she was a true cat, as much more an outer terrestrial lifeform sent down to earth. But, instead of maintain a complete bald fur coat, her hair started growing curly style! Her owner Linda Koehl was thinking of a name that would very much resonates her look and named her Laperm (Curly).

Laperm, probably due to her unique looks, was an epiphany of true sex and desire to many different male breed cats in the cat hoods, under them a Siamese and a Manx. She gave birth to their kittens bestowing them with the same odd gene combination of a curly coat.

Montana in 1987, breeders found a cat (Selkirk Rex) showing the same gene mutation as the Devon Rex and the Cornish Rex who call  Great Britain their home of origin.

All of them are recognized under the name Laperm and were officially recognized by the International Cat Association Fanciers in 2002 and The Cat Fanciers Association fallowed shortly after.

Size

10 - 15 pounds

Age

10- 15 years


Ragdoll

calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat,

We are in Riversdale, California, 1960s. Ann Baker held a foundation stock consisting a domestic longhair cat whose white coat was natural gene mutated with either the mitten or the black tuxedo pattern. Ann also owned other similar cat breeds (ancestry unknown). She took 4 cats with gentle and calm personalities along fur coats (traits you might also find in the Siamese or Himalayan cat).

The offspring of those breeds combination she named Ragdolls relating to the true calm nature jumping into every arms who are trying to hug and pat them showing great affection. Further down the future road Persians, Birmans, and Burmese were contributing to the further development of the Ragdolls.

Ann Baker claimed that not only earthly cats where involved in the Ragdoll’s development as far more aliens intervened in the development. But as we all know, claims are no proof whatsoever.

Other breeders were so in love with the cat that they decided to take some of them and waved Ann “Good-bye”, forming their Ragdolls Fanciers Club International with the goal of future recognition by cat registries.

Size

11- over 20 pounds ( male cats).

Age

12- 17 years

Facts and Curiosities Around the Calico Cat


Chaton_tricolore-calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat, female cacico cats

Calico Cats Kitten

calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat,

Neighbors of mine have been having 10 cat newborns. Unfortunately 5 of them were killed by her own mum for reasons I cannot understand! Her mum is a true calico, and has passed on her calico gene to two of them. It is just unbelievable how fast they are growing. The first couple of days they are just as small to fit your palm of the hand and a couple weeks later they are ready to explore and enjoy new worlds! Their curiosity and unquenchable thirst for everything they can use to play with is more than amusing!

So, if you are interested in buying or adopting a kitten in one of a nearby shelter, make sure you have prepared yourself to be kitten proofed. It will save you a lot of headache.

Make sure that:

  • High furniture should not serve as preparation for making your kitten famous being the first cat to climb the Mount Everest!
  • Better blocking everything off that might be the cause of having to call the fireman escort to rescue her. 
  • Take a lot of time with her and show her how much you enjoy her presence. Play with your new family member and explore (for her) new worlds!

A regular calico grows at an average rate and reaches her mature height at more or less 6 – 12 months.

What Is the Best Food For My Little Feline? 

Too maximize the health potential of a calico kitten, it is best to start with the following right balanced intake right from the start. This will assure that you will enjoy your little feline for a long healthy life! 

  • Make sure that all foods you give her has a balanced diet of calories, proteins, minerals, and vitamins. Feed her canned kitten food that are high in protein but low in carbohydrates. Do not go for the cheapest food. Do a little research for a good manufacture and choose the one that suits your understanding best how and what  ingredients were chosen and put in a nutrition can. 
  • Another good way to find out of how to know that you give your little feline the right nutrition is by looking at the label of the canned food. The recommendations on each label should be separated based on a kitten's weight and age. If it doesn't show, you should think of going with another manufacturer who does that. 

Possible Example Of A Daily Feeding Plan

Mornin​​​​​g Plan

  •  A shallow bowl deep enough to hold a cup of fresh water.  Make sure the cat can reach the water easily. Do not forget to clean the bowl daily! 
  • Give her half of the canned food for the day ( the rest put in the refrigerator). If the cat does not have eaten all provided food after 30 minutes discard it.
  • Once you found your trusted manufacture and you can make out the ingredients of what is out-labeled on the can, use it as a starter point. You will feeding a diet of half wet and half dry food to start with. Do not go overboard with the feeding times! 

Afternoon Plan

  • Refresh the water bowl with fresh new water if necessary.
  • Feed her one-third of the canned and dry food you restored in the refrigerator.
  • Happy Treat Time! It is time to train and treat your little feline. Prepare or buy, whatever suits you best (unseasoned, cooked eggs, poultry or liver). Start practicing little simple tricks. Train her to answer or react when you call her name.  Please make sure that you feed her less than 10 percent of her daily diet ratio to prevent her becoming obese and nutrient imbalanced. 
  • Use food to start training her to use a carrier. Place some of the food in a carrier (make sure the carrier is comfortable and clean before you put food in there). The sooner you start your carrier feed training the quicker the kitten's confidence level rises going in the carrier without any hassle. Start closing the carrier's door for short periods of time and increase closing time steadily. 

Are you interested in a carrier?

Are you interested in a Puzzle feeder?

Evening Plan

  • Refresh water again if necessary.
  • Feed her the other half of the canned food served in the morning. Discard not eaten food after 30 minutes. 
  • Fill a small bowl with one-third of kibble food.
  • Once the kitten finished her final meal, it is the perfect time to let her practice either the feeder puzzle or the carrier. 

Calico Cat  Names

calico cat, calico cats, female calico cat,


You are probably here because you just bought or aquired a calico cat and now you want to give her the best name. In this section I have a list in progress with possible names that might fit your little "Miss Felina"! I have sorted them by letter, (makes perfectly sense, I know!). I hope you find the one name that best describes the characteristics and outlines of your little friend!

And, congratulation to your new kitty!

                                                A                                                     

Arden

Anabel

 Algena

Anima

Alegra

 Amina

 Andorra

Aspena 

Asira

 Ashra

                                                  B                                                    

Beniga

 Bloomy

Birdy

Brighton

Blossom

Blissy

Brightfly

Blinky

Brandy

Bri

                                               C                                                       

Calica

Candoly 

Coloria 

Cordoba

Cali

Candy

Cudonia

Camouflage

Clingonia 

Crissilia

                                              D                                                        

Daisy

Dona

Diagoma

Diogna

Destiny

Dreamy 

Driple

Diamond 

Dirdry

Diversity

                                                E                                                      

Elaine

Emour 

Epipahnia

Esmira 

Enya

Endura 

Evon 

Elves

Enigma

Eve 

                                                  F                                                    

Fantasia 

Flura  

Fly

Fidelia 

Flygra 

Fomoa

Flora

Fidelira 

Fragile 

Freckles

                                              G                                                       

2 Gladdy 

Gwenwyfar

Gladdys

Gloria 

3. Glassuia 

Getsebah

Ginger

Grosia

Glasimaria 

Glossy

                                              H                                                       

Cincinnati Zoo

Hiera

Hera 

Hagatna 

Hologramia

Hisea 

Hadmina 

Heldia 

Hethia 

Horea 

Hydra 

                                                I                                                       

Indsulia 

Inglandia 

India 

Ismira

Infira 

Inova

Indina

Isla 

Igelia 

Indigo 

                                              J                                                        

Jingle

Jasmin 

Jelly

Joselina

Jade 

jagura 

Joni

Jaeffa 

Jomalia 

Jistel

                                              K                                                        

 Kara 

Kirra

Kasimira

Kryptonia 

Kasmira 

 Kundia 

Klyngolia 

Kendra 

Klueda 

Klina

                                               L                                                       

 Lasliaba

 Lasliaba

 Logria

Lara 

. Lycra

Lava

 Logrina

 limetta 

 Lisa

 Ladiva

                                             M                                                        

Mangolia

 Maopia

 Myth

Multiplia

 Marza

 Mandelia

 Miranda

 Marisa

Mandala

 Mardia

                                               N                                                      

 Nordia

Narnia

Nana

Nena

Narcissa

Nara

 Naspelia

Nonjalongne

 Nightingail

Niga

                                                O                                                     

Olga

Omiga

Omoa

Ornament

Ofra

Olvira

Osira

Ono

Osiris

Osmara

                                               P                                                       

Panther

Princess

Persia

Pluma

Piñata

Pelica

Purr

Pearl

Permia

Pearl

                                                 Q                                                    

Quandra

Quotara

Quotopia

Quasima

Quenchy

Qura

Quadria

Qualia

Quadura

Quimia

                                                R                                                      

Rima

Ragold

Rimosa

Ripa

Ramira

Rasin

Remo

Ramsesa

Rosa

Rio

                                                S                                                      

Saigon

Samira

Sheba

Samoa

Sema

Shiba

Shira

Serena

Serosa

Samora

                                             T                                                         

Tima

Talsa

Tabatha

Tabby

Tansia

Tigra

Tela

Tashiba

Tira

Toguna

                                                U                                                    

Utopia

Ulfa

Upa

Ushi

Ulina

Unia

Uni

Usia

Unirus

Unique

                                               V                                                       

Vera

Vida

Verde

Vesu

Vogue

Vina

Voila

Vida

Valina

Verdina

                                               W                                                      

Wada

Walia

Widana

Wishuna

Womia

Wundra

Wisdom

Wishna

Wasa

Wishua

                                                X                                                      

Xara

Xena

Xioma

Xina

Xisma

Xyla

Xyloa

Xandra

Xerxa

Xiandra

                                                Y                                                      

Yara

Yoyoba

Yona

Yena

Yagoona

Yodia

Yemu

Yespa

Yodira

Yerina

                                             Z                                                         

Zifu

Zora

Zepa

Zezima

Zelda

Zefana

Zesz

Zoey

Zeigoa

Zedigra

Great Facts About Calico Cats (Rep Up)

A cat must have three distinct colors to name or specify as a calico cat. They are:

1. White

2. Black, Grey or blue

3. Red, orange , peachy like or brown

-  If you at one time try to make a cat out to be a true calico cat, because she might look like she just had taken a bath in a box full of colors, make sure she definitely has white as her basic color.

- More than 99% are female (1out of 3000)!

- The most famous “Beckoning Cat” states (if not in gold or jade) represented in her three color combination (white, brown, orange).

- They are considered to bring luck, especially in Japan and Southeast Asia.

- It is said that calico male cats are bestowed with magical powers, but only during the month of May. If you have a wartz and have been trying to get rid of it, hey, now you know how to kill it! All you have to do is taking his tail and rob it smoothly over your unwanted outroot! 

- Great and true story! In Oregon, a couple years ago, a calico mum saved all her 5 kittens out of a burning barn leaving her with severe burns in eyelids and fur coat.

A calico cat brings colorful diversity into everybody's life! I hope she does the same for you too! I would love to hear and read your little calico cats' stories! What makes your Calico Cat special? Please share and tell me by leaving a message in the little square form box below! Don't be shy! Thank you so much for reading this article! I really hope you have learned the one or other new fact about your feline! Please, if you liked this article, share it by clicking one of the social buttons.  Thank You! 

All the best!

crossi77
 

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