All About Calico Cats

Just about every person who is interested in getting a cat or is just curious about cats will come across the wonderful calico cat at some point.

Why Does This Cat Draw so Much Interest?

Because calico cats are so mysterious and show a great deal of interesting characteristics and rich history. In this post we will tell you everything you need to know about this breed, along with 10 fun facts about calico cats.

Personality and Temperament

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There are usually scientifically documented studies about the behavior and personality of each cat breed. Contrary to popular belief, calico cats are not a specific breed in their own right, but rather cats with a certain fur color pattern.

This is why we can’t actually tell how calico cats behave. Calico cats are very different from one another and engage in different behavior.

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Documented behavior and personality of calico cats is therefore subjectively gauged by owner consensus, rather than scientific studies.

Given their mysterious behavior, getting a calico cat is particularly exciting. You could expect a laid-back, mellow type that will enjoy your comforting and portray loyalty, but you could also get the exact opposite: a cat with an attitude that can be a handful to take care of.

Mysterious Genetics

The genetics of Calico cats are quite fascinating, and have been the topic of serious scientific studies since the 1940s. The black and orange patches the characterize these cats are a result of the genetic phenomenon called “dosage compensation”.

Because almost all calico cats are female, they have two X-chromosomes. While males house one X and one Y chromosome, females have two X chromosomes.

X chromosomes, which have hundreds of genes coding them, are responsible for producing proteins necessary for survival. However, females can’t live with double the proteins produced by the X chromosome, and therefore need to compensate for the imbalance by shutting down one X chromosome.

In cats, the gene that dictates fur color is located on the X chromosome. Therefore, if a female shuts down the X chromosome carrying the gene for white fur in one particular spot of the body, the gene will produce orange fur in that spot instead (and visa versa).

Because the deactivated chromosomes are chosen randomly, the combination of fur colors in calico cats is also random and unique for every calico cat.

Health and Lifespan

The common question people ask is “how long can calico cats live?” The average lifespan of calico cats is 12-16 years.  The question is if this is more or less than the average lifespan of cats for most cat breeds.  The answer is yes and no. It depends if the calico cat is male or female.

How Rare Are Male Calico Cats?

Male Calico cats are pretty rare.They tend to live shorter lives than female calico cats because of their unique chromosomal characteristics.

The good news is that 99.9% of calico cats are female because of this unique genetic makeup. But put worries aside, because just like with any cat, a calico cat can live longer than average if provided the best health care.

You should provide your cat with good shelter, feed him or her with a nutritious diet, and provide him or her with a solid health care plan.

Types of Calico Cats

There are 3 well known types of calico cats: Dilute, Tortoiseshell, and Patched Tabby. As we mentioned earlier, calicos are not a breed, but rather a color pattern. Each of these three calico cats differ in color. Dilute means that the colors are less intense, hence “dilute”.

However, the Tortoiseshell and Patched Tabby types do feature unique differences in color. Tortoiseshell cats have very little white coat, which usually appears as small spots on the face, chest or paws.

Ginger and black don’t appear in such distinct patches. Patched Tabby is a type of calico cat which has distinct tabby stripes, along with prominent ginger and black patches.

10 Things You Should Know About Calico Cats

  • Females dominate.

    99.9% of calico cats turn out to be females because of their special unique chromosomal makeup.

  • 1 out of 3000 male born calicos is sterile.

    This happens because 99.9% of calico cats are females and male calicos are so rare, that 1 of 3000 male calico cats is born with Klinefelter’s syndrome. That means they are not only sterile, but unfortunately also carry a lot of other health problems.

  • They represent a state.

    Because of their color, calico cats are declared The Official State Cat of Maryland. Fun fact is that only two other states have state cats. Authorities declared this because calico cat fur colors are a mixture of white, black and orange – the same as the Baltimore Orion.

  • Beckoning cat.

    The famous Beckoning cat character is based on a calico cat.

  • Different names.

    Calico cats have different names in different cultures. For example they are called “lapjeskat” in the Netherlands, which means “patched cat”, and “mi-ke” in Japan, which stands for “triple fur”.

  • Lucky charm.

    Given their rarity, calico cats are known as lucky charms and signs of good luck around the world. People also believe that calico cats bring good fortune to the homes of families who adopt them. Another fun fact is that they are sometimes referred to as money cats in the United States. In the 1870’s, calico cats were declared an official symbol of fortune in Japan.

  • They are brave.

    A calico cat saved Japan’s railway station from being closed down. This happened back in 2007, when Kinokawa train station was about to be closed due to budget issues. As a last resort, the town sent a local calico cat to be station master, where she would greet passengers as they passed by. As the calico cat became a celebrity, it drove a 17% increase in station traffic. The calico cat’s good luck charm is indeed true.

  • They are everywhere.

    Considering how rare calico cats are, they have really spread around the world. Calico cats were traced migrating along the routes in Europe and Northern Africa. Even though they originated in Egypt, they were also found in cities along the Mediterranean, France, Italy, and Spain.

  • You can not breed them.

    You can’t breed a calico cat because they only happen by chance. They are not a genetically engineered breed. That is why they are so rare and considered a lucky charm. They are also considered to be a little bit magical because of their three colors. It’s like three cats in one…by chance. Quite interesting, no?

  • They cure warts.

    While it’s just a rumor, it’s often believed that calico cats can cure warts. Rubbing warts against the tail of a calico cat in May is supposed to cure it. We are not sure if this is true, but we are sure that the cats probably don’t enjoy it!

85 thoughts on “All About Calico Cats

  1. AvatarNicki

    Interesting facts! I own a beautiful calico but she is a very stressed out girl. She has suffered from bladder crystals, needing surgery, and gets urinary tract infections from stress. She tempermental, doesn’t get along with other cats, and has recently taken to marking her territory. I love her so much but she’s become a lot of work! Any advice!

    Reply
    1. AvatarGadgetman

      We have a gorgeous calico & white female & she had a terrible case of bladder stones which had to be surgically removed. Our vet put her on prescription Science Diet C/D food (ultra low ash) & firmly instructed us that she must stay on this food for life or the stones will keep coming back. So far, so good. She thinks she is human & thrives when we are near her. She also nurses herself when she is really comfortable near us (like snuggled against us). If we leave her & travel for a few days, she stresses bad & throws up.

      Reply
    2. AvatarALICIA LARSON

      I have to assume that you’ve asked your vet, yes? I had a cat with similar urinary problems. There were certain things that helped a lot. First of all, vets told me to never fed him anything with fish in it. The more fish, the more Ash. And Ash clogs up the urinary track in and causes problems. Also, never ever let the kitty outside in the cold. Cold weather tends to make their little urethras retain urine and thus infections etc. As for the stones, some claim that certain Kitty treats can cause these. That might be a myth, but worth a try. If kitty is stressed when alone, you might want to get a kitten. A kitten doesn’t care if your cat likes other cats. A Kitten loves its way into any cat’s heart. ? good luck!

      Reply
    3. AvatarSlamina

      I’m sorry to hear your calico is prone to crystals. We just went through that with our male tabby so I can understand the stress. On the other hand, our calico is presenting our multi cat house hold with issues just in the last couple months. I found her during a TNR. She was the runt and is still tiny. I brought her in after mama was done feeding and she was funny and playful. Although they found gingivitis at time of spay, about 8 wks.. She joined our 3 kitty family and 6 months later we adopted 3 male and 1 female nursing kitties that lost mama from a car accident. Now we have 7. She’s been with all of us for 2.5 yrs. and recently 2 of the males (twins) and her just don’t get along and she’d rather be by herself. She never was one to play with the others, didn’t like bring held and only would come to me. She took up residence on top of our kitchen cupboards. 2 wks. ago we found she has not been using the cat box and refuses to. I’m cleaning out cupboards now that smell of ammonia. She seems depressed and sad. W e have no choice but to go against our life long commitment w/our cats and find her a one kitty owner. She’s not happy and I’m so sad and will wait it out to find that perfect home. She definitely has a different personality in all I described and others as well. I will write some suggestions for crystals in my next reply so this doesn’t become too long

      Reply
      1. AvatarShelley

        May i suggest a tip for your girl ?. Most cats do not like to share their bathroom with others . If they cant go out side and find their own toilet that is natural to all cats then it might solve your problem.

        Reply
    4. AvatarLisa

      This sounds like my cat Ziggy. She’s 6 years old.
      Everything you said resembles her personality.
      She has had a urinary track infection in the past, and does spray around her litter box.. I do believe it’s because of my other cat and their territory issues. She’s extreamly sensitive and cautious all the time. She only really gets along with my fiancé and I, no other people. We brought our 2nd cat in thinking she would have a friend and never be alone. But it has taken 3 years for them to just sit next to each other. They’re very finicky Creatures.

      Reply
    5. AvatarKaren Williams

      Try..my pet well being .com. Mypetwellbeing.com
      New product to help the kidneys..ect.ll my veterinary..recommend codecept .. Preventative
      I had my girl the only time she got.bladder was under stress we moved in with my neighbor and 1 if her cats stresed her our..although.we lived with other animals she was great..but tbis biy cat duked her and me with his paws he was like a boxer…
      Tbe other thing bach flowers could calm her with tbe vet approved .rescue remedy will take stress off and its used when there in high strss situations..there are other flower essences to deal with special behavior patterns…Karen

      Reply
    6. AvatarKathy Novian

      Our Callie is very temperamental and had urinary issues as well. We did two things. We got her a pheromone collar and put her on cosequin. The temperament changed when she was not in pain.

      Reply
    7. AvatarMe ow

      My tabby had bladder crystals and the doc said Hill prescription diet only. He hated it and the ingredients were subpar. I instead purchased methigel (methionine was the ingredient in Hills – an amino acid) and there are other natural products that correct the ph level …. he did well on that. My present cat (calico) is hyperthyroid and I am giving her tripsy and resthyro .. she couldn’t handle the pills the vet gave me. These products help the kidney, bladder and relax her naturally. The one product has valerian in it … de stresser, muscle relaxant. She really settled down with these mixtures, no more howling at night, excessive tail wagging and licking. She is her normal self once again. The company is NHV … check out their site, they are good to talk to as well if need be.

      Reply
  2. AvatarWanderer

    Calicos are indeed a mysterious breed. It’s been said when a cat lifts their left paw it is a sign of good fortune – hence the Beckoning cat of japan

    Reply
  3. AvatarAnita

    My cat had a litter of six 12 days ago. One torti, two calico and four tuxedo. Their personality are so amazing

    Reply
      1. Avatar*PinkUnicorn4123

        It might be to late, but i have a stray calico in my backyard. I’ve been meaning to call some shelters or set her up in the yard. She seems pretty comfortable but school is starting soon and during the winter I don’t want her to freeze! I can’t tell how old she is but she’s skinny and little. Is it ok if I email u if it is ok w my parents?

        Reply
  4. AvatarRandy LaCasse

    I adopted a five-month-old female who weighs 3.5 lbs she is rather small. I have had her home now for 3 days the 1st day she spent in her carrier then ventured out. She is adjusting extremely well-eating playing running around being a kitten. She will sit on my lap, my head, shoulders or watch tv with me in bed or in the living room. Except when I go to pick her up she gets very skittish. But once I hold her she is fine. Also, she just started following me around from room to room, will grow out of being skittish? when I go to pick her up? Otherwise, she just makes me, laugh all day and, night. I haven’t ever owned a kitten before.
    Any advice would be helpful.
    Thank you
    Randy and Becky

    Reply
    1. AvatarGuillermo

      Omg. This sounds just like my Emmie. She is 3 months old, very skittish when I want to pick her up, but files he everywhere and wants to hang around me. However, when she cries for attention, she will allow me to pick her up and caress her.

      Reply
      1. AvatarRose

        Sounds just like my little Bella. She was close to ten weeks when we adopted her. She was very skittish but we just kinda ignored her. Have lots of toys and now she is Five months old and loves to be held like a baby. I went away for one night and my husband said she was up all night waiting for me. When I did get home and would lay down she laid right
        On top of me as of to say. Your not
        Leaving me again. The next day all she wanted was for
        Me to hold her. I had lots of stuff to do in the computer and she kept Falling off
        My lap so I put her in between my sweater and
        Top and she stayed there for over an hour and
        Slept. She is a little mischievous too. Trying to get in my plants so I spray her with water and some of my plants I put contact paper upside down so if she tries to go in the play she sticks to it. Other than that She is just a delight and I cannot picture my life without her.

        Reply
    2. AvatarCarol

      Randy and Becky, I have been told by a pet store owner that they don’t like to be picked up, I don’t know if he meant just that type or any type (calico). That’s the first time I ever heard of it but it rather makes sense to me, as they do act rather scared when you do, they’ll meow when you do more so when they are kittens. Please let me know if you received this response, thank you.

      Reply
  5. AvatarMandyshines

    Randy and Becky I am curious how is your kitty? It sounds like she wanted to be your friend already. Sometimes kittens have anxiety about being captured or picked up because of where they come from she could have possibly been roughly caught by children when she was with her litter or something like that. In any case I would think she certainly would be better by now with proper care.

    Reply
  6. AvatarMackayla

    I have a calico. she does not get along with the dog who just got fixed yesterday. We have three cats. Our calico, Anna, our orange tabby, Meowey, and our tortoiseshell, Angel. She kind of gets along with them. I love them a lot, but Anna is afraid of balloons. Any advice for “balloon phobia?”

    Reply
  7. AvatarJulia

    My calico is a beautiful girl with the brightest personality! She is always playing with my dog but is very gentle and always sleeps under the covers with me. It is hilarious because all of the calico cats that I have owned ( I have owned 3) are pretty independent but then they just start yelling at you when they want attention! If she wants in my covers but doesn’t know how, she will start meowing into my ear until I wake up and then I lift the cover and she bolts in and curls up next to me. She is really clever and can make anything a toy, and I mean anything.

    Reply
    1. AvatarLacy Smith

      That is funny you say that about the covers. I rescued my calico on 09.11 and she is my first cat ever. She talks ALMOST all the time. We go back and forth and discuss our day’s events. She loves the sun coming in the windows ( and will ignore you to get the sunbeam) and is just starting to snuggle under the covers. Her long whiskers wake me up, and like you, lift the covers and she is down for the count. She loves when we play with the laser pointer and I reward her with verbal and a treat when we are done. She knows when it is bedtime too. She follows me to every room in the house no matter what. She loves an open window sill and watches the birds and people. Easy going… I am going to introduce her to a cat of the same age… will see what happens.

      Reply
    2. AvatarKaren

      My calico lady diana was like ur calico she sleep under a baby blanket or in bed under covers with me..my other cats siamese/himilayan prefer on top of bed..and my calico had a loud snoring..due i think to noise issues were in her record i thk its from.persian lineage as they hve nose issue s..but she was so quitet when i took her on planes quiet or into Starbucks. Sweet nobody knew i had a cat in my bag with babyblanket..she loved to sleep on my bed under her baby comforter..i lost her in 2017..i miss her …she was amazing

      Reply
  8. AvatarJulia

    My calico is a beautiful girl with the brightest personality! She is always playing with my dog but is very gentle and always sleeps under the covers with me. It is hilarious because all of the calico cats that I have owned ( I have owned 3) are pretty independent but then they just start yelling at you when they want attention! If she wants in my covers but doesn’t know how, she will start meowing into my ear until I wake up and then I lift the cover and she bolts in and curls up next to me. She is really clever and can make anything a toy, and I mean anything. She has also never had any health issues.

    I got her at 1 month old and she was barely 1 pound. Was that ok for her to leave her mom so early?

    Reply
  9. AvatarCaroline

    I have a calico, her name is Lily, she is my girl, very affectionate with me and she thinks she is a human. Love to be around other women too specially when we have get togethers. She doesn’t to be picked up but she follows me all the time. She is a senior now but still she is very curious and love chasing creatures.

    Reply
  10. AvatarBecky

    I have a beautiful patched tabby calico who turned 14 years old in March. She definitely has her own personality. She talks a lot and well screams until she gets what she wants. She tells you when she is ready for her meals and if your aren’t fast enough she will let you know. She has a strict bed time and if you aren’t ready she will follow you around screaming until you finally lay down. She only wants love and pets when SHE wants them. She has been a huge part of our family and as annoying as she can be I hope we have many more years with her.

    Reply
    1. AvatarSpirits' PollyAnna

      I have same cat but also Polydactyl (hemmingway)…i wish i understood her meows and clicks and chirps..lol…i have had her since she was 3 mos..but at 5 mos i went outta town for work and lft her with my roomies who have 3 dogs (indoor) and 2 cats(indoor-1 outside rescue)..they all get along swell…when i returned 3mos later, she had no issue knowing who i was at all…but now that we no longer live with the animal roomies, she seems to have seperation issues when i leave the house for long hours..like literally rips up the place! lol she even thinks she can go outside like the dogs.. ..i used to put her on my lap and sit out on the porch with her on my lap b4 we moved..and now i have a 2nd fl terrace i let her out on..but she jumped one day and got hemmed up (almost brawled) with a neighbors ferrel cat..so no more outside .lol..and so now she acting like a caged ferrel cat lol..but the meowing tho aarrghh lol

      Reply
  11. AvatarMonica Holiday

    My calico used to come up in the bed and uncover my face if the covers were over my head, and then she would snuggle up close to my chin. Sweetest thing ever. Now there are other cats in the house and she has a thyroid issue and has to take medication. So she doesn’t come up on the bed hardly at all anymore. She’s more restless and doesn’t like to compete with the other cats. It took her the longest of the other 3 cats to adjust to them and to a new place. We still have a good bond, but she doesn’t quite seem like the same cat. 😔 She and our young tortie seem to enjoy playing at times. 😊

    Reply
  12. AvatarTom

    I had a female calico cat for 12 years. She had Kidney Failure. I had to put her to sleep. I miss her everyday-she was my buddy. She had a beautiful coat with a great personality.

    Reply
    1. AvatarRoberta

      My beautiful female calico cat was with me for 15 years. She too had kidney failure which I tried to keep under control but recently developed anemia and a heart murmur. I made the heartbreaking decision to put her to sleep yesterday afternoon. I am so incredibly sad and miss her so much. She brought so much joy to my life.

      Reply
      1. AvatarCathy

        Hi Roberta, I just lost my beautiful Calico Casey to a brain tumor. She was about 12, and we loved her so much. We fed her the best food, faithfully took her to the vet every year, and spent lots of time together. Like you, I am incredibly sad and miss my girl so much.

        Reply
      2. AvatarAllen Roberts

        I am very sorry I can understand your sadness we lost our calico gizmo of 19 years almost a year ago similar experience as you described still had one cat I swore never again it was hardest loss human or animal I ever been through she came to us when on way home from work I dropped off a friend at his apartment and here was little bitty kitten that nobody was find of so I asked around and soon found it wasn’t a good situation for her in fact bad well it angered me at a couple of comments I heard and knew she was leaving there she had a wound on her neck and I didn’t have anything to put her in for the 45 min trip home I advised the people around this place I would be coming back for cat and I expected her o have eaten and gave something to drink on my return there was 4 bowls of water and 2 of milk and all kinds of food my friend told me later that I had give a very stern speech to the people around and I’m on the large side but generally quiet well I loaded her up in carrier took her to the nest vet in the world one dr.william adams which we lost just a few months back tuned out the wound was a wolf worm he took care of that she came home with me and cleaned up with her big ears it was plain as day gizmo from the movie. And from that day was best friend i ever had as I said earlier no more and very serious about it until couple months back I was trying to change a part on our car my wife yells and asks where kitten come from I have no idea but informed her didn’t know where it came from but I knew it would be leaving i searched put every minor and 10 houses in each direction nobody had a clue and my wife was late for app. To stop this ramble I now have a very full of energy kitten with some big paws to fill so maybe think of seeking out a new friend good luck fellow feline enthusiast Big Al

        Reply
    2. AvatarKaren Williams

      My calico had kidney faliure in 2017 was 14..she was my healthiest cat..it shocked me ..i miss her she was sweet ..beautiful coloring..ciukd travel anywhere liked dogs or other cats..i was so lucky..to hve her..shes a 1 on a kind…

      Reply
    3. AvatarDebbie Scott

      I had a 12 year old calico named Seeetie and one of her kidneys shivered up and she was on so much pain I had to put her to sleep. I now have another calico cat and she now has Cystitis.

      Reply
  13. AvatarRachel

    My calico, S’more, is gorgeous and she’s about two years old. She’s been picking up a naughty habit recently, peeing/pooping on the beds. However, it seems the other cat of the household might be fighting back and peeing on the beds as well. I’ve had S’more since she was a few weeks old, and they’ve never seemed to have issues with marking territory. Does anyone know why the sudden naughtiness? I did go away for college for a few months and she could be acting out because of that. She tends to use my bed as a bathroom when I’m gone because she’s upset. I’ll be moving next month (without the other cat) and I need to figure out if she’s just overall a cat that wants to be alone, or if it’s something that can be stopped to allow another kitty into my home.

    Reply
    1. AvatarCathy

      PLEASE take her to a vet!!!! I have had 2 that suddenly started forgetting the ‘potty rules’… I unfortunately lost both to underlying kidney failure…. which they may have survived had I recognized they were sick earlier. Animals who have been potty trained and then start having accidents are trying to get you attention and let you know they are sick.

      Reply
    2. AvatarMarisa Walker

      That behavior Commonly means she has bladder/kidney problem, maybe infection. But I had 2 cats that had hypertension & stupid vet put me through all the typical “behavior” problems. Eventually they had failed kidneys. An excellent vet is priceless.

      Reply
  14. AvatarLillian Silva

    We had a beautiful Calico female named Patch. We were blessed to have her for 20 years, yes 20 years.
    She was wonderful with our kids, who are now 18 and 14. She was so patient with them when they were little.
    She was the queen of our pets, welcoming a adopted baby kitten 12 years ago as her own, as well as a 6 week old puppy seven years ago. They miss her as much as we do. As a family, we all said good bye to her.
    She is loved, and lived well past her life span, we were blessed to have her in our lives, and we miss her dearly.

    Reply
  15. AvatarBeverly Horen

    My calico Patches is a long haired beauty. The only time she was naughty like that was when i had my daughters cat for a long weekend. never before or sense. She is a love, like so many of the other fore mentioned calicos she does like to sleep on my bed with me, but waits tell I say lets go to bed then she will go to my bedroom door and wait patiently until I am in bed then comes in and joins me. Patches is 12 years old now. she has been with me for 11 years, and has NEVER liked to be picked up. But when I sit down she is always at my side or in my lap. Loves it when I have company, and is always looking for attention. Many years ago I use to breed Siamese cats(not known for their loving personalities) and I must say, Patches is the best companion cat I have eer had.

    Reply
  16. AvatarRoberta

    My beautiful female calico cat was with me for 15 years. She too had kidney failure which I tried to keep under control but recently developed anemia and a heart murmur. I made the heartbreaking decision to put her to sleep yesterday afternoon. I am so incredibly sad and miss her so much. She brought so much joy to my life.

    Reply
  17. Avatarterrie brandolini

    I have a beautiful Calico that also has the Hemmingway Trait! she has 24 claws! She is on the big size I believe because of this! She is now almost 14 yrs old! Punkinhead weight is 13 lbs! She is healthy She isn’t fond of my Deaf Boxer but they do love each other from a far lol! And I never knew all the things about Calicoes She is Shy gets Stressed out sometimes like Vet visits! Never knew they were on the Rare side! Glad I read up on them! #LoveMyCalico!

    Reply
    1. AvatarLinda Fyfe

      We have a beautiful calico, Maui, who we got at age 10 weeks from a rescue group. Our beloved Maine Coon mix died suddenly while we were out of town 2 weeks before we got Maui. I didn’t know anything about Calicos but she had medium long fur and I thought she would have a Maine coon-like personality. I was very wrong. 😆 From the start she was very playful and demanding. She didn’t like her litter pans or the litter so we gave her lots of choices and figured all that out. She taught me how she could play fetch with a paper ball which she can do for long periods of time.
      We have traveled quite a bit and after this last trip it really became apparent that she doesn’t do well when we’re away. So my husband traveled and I stayed with her this weekend.
      She has pooped on the dining room rugs periodically for some time. Lately she’s been peeing in the corners of the living and dining rooms on the new hardwoods. I’ve gone on line and for info on how to treat the floors to rid it from the smells and to keep her from repeating in those areas and it’s not working. Took her to the vet and they weren’t able to get a urine sample so she sent me home with Prozac for her. 😬
      I love the little rascal and now she’s confined to the laundry room. I can’t live with her peeing on my floors. I’ve contacted the rescue group where we got her. I’ve tried everything I know to do.
      What advise do you have for me?

      Reply
  18. AvatarDiane

    it’s so incredibly hard to lose a pet. i’ve been grieving for weeks over the loss of
    my little dog. i am adopting a calico kitten to help heal the hole in my heart.
    There are so many animals needing homes!

    Reply
  19. Avatarmatthew b davis

    I have a calico cat named Cali and she is my best buddy. She follows me around the house and talks to me all the time. When it’s time for bed, she hopps right in bed with me and curls up, She has to be touching me too. She will sleep the whole night with me. I have her brother and mother too, which is also a calico. Her brother is a black and white cat. She doesn’t care for the other cats too much, but favors my 4th cat, a ginger cat named Bubba, who is her buddy. I love her deeply. She is 5 years old now and I hope to have her for many years. She is spayed and has vet checkups and has a clean bill of health. Yay!

    Reply
  20. AvatarDary Hannam-Cobb

    I have a female cat Calico named Lucy. She is 5 years old and just recently she started peeing everywhere in the corners of the house. She creates a loud meow when she doesn’t get her way and she’s very stressed out a lot. How do I stop her from peeing in the corners of the house, she’s never done this before.. she is so loving and she follows me from room to room to room to room.

    Reply
  21. AvatarSlamina

    Crystals..oh my..how i can relate but with our white and orange male. One thing I’ve found is if a cat doesn’t want canned food, especially Hills CD which he is on, I will grind up his dry Hills CD real fine and put on top of the wet. This helped him to eat the canned much better. As far as her stressing, I feel bad for you and her both for going through this because stress is one thing bladder issues don’t like! And if she is marking it’s adding to the stressful situation. Is she spayed and can you remember when and possibly why she began marking? Like ours, it was due to a fight with the other cats. I have a link to the best article on cats in multiple cat households. https://icatcare.org/advice/keeping-your-cat-happy/multi-cat-households-and-how-survive-them. There is also good articles on cats with bladder issues. It was the most resourceful page I found and I looked for a long time. Wishing you the best

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  22. AvatarBarbara

    HI I have a female Calico named Miss Lucy. I got her from a friend when she was a year and a half. Now she is 5 years old. Before she came too me, she used to spend all her time upstairs at my friends house. Anyhow since got her. She is not really loveable kind of cat. Yes she follows me around a lot. And she sleeps by myside. But she won’t let me pick her up but I guess because she is 14 pounds. She is fixed. But the whole problem that I have with her is out of the blue she will bite me and also go for my ankles. Not all the time just out of the blue. I do play with her. Is there anything I can do or give her. I don’t have any cats. My friend did have another one with her but she kept it.

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  23. Avatarashley gray

    i have a female calico her name is scooby she is a very sweet and cuddly calico . she loves to mess with my fish tanks and climb on tables and scratch my walls and furniture. she does not get along with other animals she loves to greet you when you come in and she will let you know shes hungry. she is orange black and white female calico her mommy was a orange tabby and her daddy was black and white that probably how she got her colors. shes a good cat to have and a very picky eater.

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  24. AvatarCrazy Cat Lady

    My calico baby girl is a wild one. She can be extremely shy and picky when it comes to socialising with people.
    Some people makes her run and some makes her cuddly.
    Everyday she would do something that would surprise me. I swear they only get more interesting as the years go by.

    She is the most vocal kitten I have had, comparing to her two big brothers. We would just talk back and forth like “Did you have a good day Gizmo?” “Meowww..” “That sounds amazing Gizmo, what else happened?” “Meowwwwoooo…” “What?! Bowie did what? Your brothers are so naughty. Gizmo, you’re such a good girl.” “Meoowwww!”

    My Gizmo can also have such a bad anxiety problem and would pee here and there. No underlying health issues, we have gone to the vets a few times, got all the tests and everything. I would be exhausted and mad that I need to keep cleaning and washing after her. But at the end of the day, she is my baby girl and I wouldn’t change her for the world.

    Adopt yourself a calico, she will fill your heart with so much happiness and pure joy.

    Reply
  25. AvatarBarb

    Our calico, Billie Jo was found outside a Billiard Hall in MN. She is a great lap cat and loves to cuddle. We have traveled to AZ with her several times and she does just fine. Our other cat, Drew doesn’t like her and vice versa but such is life (just like politics). But we survive and are blessed to be a 2 cat family.

    Reply
  26. AvatarJeannette

    I got my calico about a year ago or a little more ago from the neighbors across the the street. I asked the teen girl that had her why see keeps her outside? I told her she is to little and to pretty to be kept outside. She told me she wants the kitty the live off the land. I told her she was an ass and stupid for thinking that way. Animals need love and gidances, not to defend for themselves. So a couple nights later she came to my door and asked if I seen Ava, I told her to come in and look under the couch. And there she was, happy and content. I also have 3 dogs and 2 other cats they all get along great with each other. We ( the family ) call her Little Miss Ava. She is a little nicsnucs. It means Trouble maker in German. But she is so cute and funny. She is about a year, year and a half. She’s white, black, gray and a very little bit tan. I wouldn’t give her up for nothing. She’s here with me for the donation.That was the best thing I did, and it seem like a lot of strays come here because I have sucker writing on my forehead. Lol. Soon or later I’ll be out in the doghouse, if my husband gets his way.

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  27. AvatarShauna Gunnink

    My 13-yr-old Calico Gracie Lou is beautiful and quirky and very protective of me. She, too, has recently developed hyperthyroidism and kidney stones and I almost lost her. I am working very hard to get her healthy again. She doesn’t want the Hills C/D wet food, which is so frustrating, but she is eating some of the dry. I’m told that wet food is better for older cats, especially those with kidney problems, to help with hydration.

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  28. AvatarTialisa

    My Chloe is a beautiful cat she has her own personality, she doesn’t like to be held except by my son, we recently brought and daughter and her kitten home for the weekend and Chloe didn’t like that at all, she hissed and scared the poor thing. She gets along with my dog and dwarf bunny. She is very aggressive now more then ever. Any comments on this

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  29. AvatarCJ

    Love all the “cat tales” about torties.

    Have an 8 yr old female who rules the rest of the cats (8) without aggression. None have ever questioned the queen 😉

    She is affectionate with me, but ignores the dog completely.

    Also have a dilute tortie who was a rescue.
    Found her orphaned and close to starvation… guess was she was about 4 weeks old at that time. Big beautiful and sweet now.

    Last but really not least… took in a Ragdoll that folks said they couldn’t keep.
    Didn’t know they had her bred and she gave birth to 2 kittens (now 9 Mo’s old).
    A female chocolate lynx point, and a MALE seal tortie point. Thought he was just a strangely marked Ragdoll since they are color pointed cats, but his color points finished filling in.

    He is so soft and sweet. Problem is, he thinks he is a neck scarf.
    World’s most dedicated cuddle bum.

    Thanks to everyone for sharing your kitties’ stories. A prayer of comfort for those who have loved and lost.
    We can never fill the holes in our hearts they leave, but they teach us how to keep on loving.

    Was once told that I couldn’t save every cat in the world. True. But it means the world to the ones that are rescued.

    Reply
  30. AvatarCJ

    Tialisa… Don’t give up on the new additions. Many times the resident cat doesn’t like “Invaders.”

    Give the new additions their own space if possible. Or just give them all a way to get away from each other. Just like humans, cats want their own space at times.

    Many times they don’t take long to establish their chain of command; however, sometimes it may take longer.

    There may be a knockdown dragout fight on occasion. Even though it can sound like it’s pretty ugly, one or other of the cats will give up quickly. Cats have retty good sense of self preservation when they “argue.”

    Just be Sue to keep an eye on the dog if or when the cats are arguing.
    Sometimes a dog will take u for it’s buddy and that might not turn out well for a new kitty.

    Reply
  31. AvatarRobert Sinclair

    My calico cats name is Bella she is 18 years old soon to be 19 she has a fat lip but she looks a lot so I can concerned she makes lots of noise at night I guess she needs attention when I give it to her she’s quiet I got her on raw food and dry food she still plays and purrs

    Reply
  32. AvatarDestiny Bailey

    I have a female calico, she’s almost two years old. Her name is Eva. She’s so energetic and spunky. She’s slender built. Recently she’s started chewing on plastic bags if she can find any. Thoughts?

    Reply
  33. AvatarSwig

    My calico is a patch tabby named Rocky Raccoon, cause she looks like a raccoon. She is very sweet especially to me. She is shy around new people and takes 2 or 3 visits to get warmed up. She is Great at the vet and everybody that sees her can’t get over how pretty she is. She’s a 2008 model, so she will be 11 years old soon. She showed up at our house in the garage eating my dogs food. A very cute little kitten with a little body and big head. She’s still relatively small, 6 lbs
    My sweet dog passed away two years ago so Rocky runs things here now. I can’t imagine life without her, I call her “my monkey”. My brother is a vet so we take great care of her. Love to spoil her rotten.

    Reply
  34. AvatarTommy lee Russell

    I have a female calico pumpkin white orange n black she is very good hunter when goes outside talks ALOT only bad is I have her sister all black female ck I’m told calico s are so independent she hiss es at her sister ALOT all black sweetness is n bed with me all the time loves to get under blankets snuggle pumpkin does it at times pumpkin likes to in a on me all the time both cats die go outside a little pumpkin wants to stay out a lot longer to hunt she has brought birds rabbits squirrels flying birds I know I shouldn’t have a favorite but sweetness never has gotten mad at me true love i plan on getting same as i have when they die calico n all black again

    Reply
  35. AvatarLexi

    I have a calico named luna. She does so many cute, quirky things. When she is in trouble like if i tell her to get off the kitchen table she does quick little meows like shes arguing lol. She is super independent all through the day but at night she likes to cuddle when my boyfriend and I go to sleep. She is best friends with our pitbull/boxer mix, they get along so well and love to play together. They are only about 1 year apart. She’s just turned 2 and he’s just turned 3. Luna love to play with toys and really anything. If i make tinfoil or paper or anything into a ball and throw it she will go fetch it just like a dog and bring it back haha. She also likes to hide behind things and around corners and she will jump out with her arms stretched out and try to scare you. I’ve never seen a cat do some of the things she does. Shes crazy smart and the best cat!!

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  36. AvatarLissa Lansdown

    My calico Kiko is half Maine Coon and the most unusual cat I’ve ever met, the most personable and charming cat imaginable. Follows me from room to room like a dog, likes to tunnel under the covers and sleep with me, rolls her head to one side when she sees me to indicate she wants to be petted. She’s the leader and the diplomat of my multiple pet household, loved by all and as beautiful as the day is long!

    Reply
  37. AvatarJudith lindley

    4 those who love calicos and forties check out calicos and kin released July 2018. Ok @amazons bookstore.

    Reply
  38. AvatarGail Cavallaro

    My calico was a stray. A nice woman fed her once in awhile, but when she noticed she looked like she was pregnant, she turned her in at a shelter. She was indeed pregnant and gave birth to 5 black kittens, whom were all adopted but not the calico mother cat.. My husband and I happened to visit this shelter and as soon as we saw her, it was love at first sight. She was scheduled to be spayed, so we had to wait before taking her home. She is not only beautiful but she has a wonderful personality and so loving. I put my face down to hers and she kisses me or licks my forehead. Naturally she sleeps in bed with us every night, even though we bought her a really nice cat bed, which she uses during the day. The only time she goes outside is to and from her Vet. I love my Jennie so much and I think she is happy living with us.

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  39. AvatarGail Cavallaro

    My calico was a stray. A nice woman fed her once in awhile. but when she suspected that she was pregnant, she turned her into a shelter. The cat was indeed pregnant and gave birth to 5 black kittens, all of whom were adopted but not the calico mother cat. My husband an I happened to visit that shelter and as soon as we seen this calico cat, it was love at first sight, She was scheduled to be spayed so we had to wait before we could take her home. She is not only beautiful but she has a wonderful personality, and so loving. When I put my face down to hers, she kisses me or licks my forehead. Naturally she sleeps in bed with us every night even though we bought her a cozy cat bed, which she uses during the day. The only time he goes outside is to an from her Vet. I love my JENNIE so much and I think she likes living with us.

    Reply
  40. AvatarAmy Harris

    My cat just recently gave birth to twin male calicos. Her previous litter she had a long hair female calico. Going to try and find them all good homes.

    Reply
  41. AvatarJen

    We adopted our Calico who was about 3 yrs when rescued from a hoarding situation.. I’ve never experienced such a loving, cuddle buddy of a cat with a big personality..She is a lap cat and very talkative with a side of sass.. Our cat will comfort anyone who is visibly upset or cries, she will run up to that person out of nowhere to give a rub, kiss on the face or cuddle.. Good natured but she is not a fan of other cats so is the only one in our house..

    Reply
  42. AvatarBarbara Bryson

    I had a Calico cat, her name is Sophie; she was my best friend and I miss her very much everyday. She made my life so happy and much easier without even realizing. I had her at 5 weeks old when I was a freshmen in high school until I was 19 years old. (I’ll be turning 21 this July) it was so weird how instantly she became MY cat in my household. I still remember my mother calling me to tell me she had a surprise for me when she got home, I instantly knew what was coming and had her name ringing in my head. She was so precious!!! Very playful as a kitty and super affectionate too. She’d always put her paw on my face i took it as her way if imprinting me as hers. She was quite sassy though lol she came off as very independent and did not want to be bothered but with me , nope, a complete goofy lovable funny wild girl. She was me in the form of a cat being biracial her complexities matched mine and we were inseparable! She sure has brought much fortune good luck protection and divine connectivity and destiny into my life. Sophie was never letting her guard down around others except me not even my family members or past partners, exceeeeept my boyfriend of now which she met and I was so surprised to see how loving she was towards him. I love her so much and so deeply and ocassionally have dreams of her visiting me, petting her, adoring her. She’s an angel watching over me and all around me with her omnipresence. We were meant to be together. Just as she was found playing in a garden and brought to me randomly she one day didn’t come back. I will always know she was God sent. Some may say and view it as she was very lucky to find a family to bring her in but I think it’s the other way around I have been very blessed to have her come to me and I pray that everyone feels that deep love and connection with their fury friends. I love you Sophie forever and always, thank you.

    Reply
  43. AvatarK’lind

    My sweet girl is a calico. Miss. Priss was rescued from being shredded dogs. Priss is about 4 months old and I’ve had her for roughly 2. Playful, affectionate, loves my four year old orange tabby to pieces and he loves her too. Took about three days and they were best friends. Priss is adventurous and brave (sometimes I think she acts like a sugar glider). Last night she landed on my head rather than the pillow. Priss sleeps with me, sometimes under the covers. I can’t imagine life without her. She stole my heart and the heart of Zax (my four yo cat). Now she is the queen of the house. Funny thing: when I go pee she jumps up on the toilet seat and tries to cover up my pee (pawing the seat and air). Anyone else have a cat that does this?

    Reply
  44. AvatarLoretta

    HELP!!!! I was just given a calico. I named her Lily. She will be 3 months old on August 4. I am at my WITS end! She meows all the time (I’m prone to debilitating headaches and have to lock myself in my office when the screeching starts.) She is VERY bold. And very skittish. So much so…she’s making ME skittish! She has now started trying to chew my furniture. I had a $20 bill on my dining room table and an hour after I put it there (she wasn’t anywhere nearby watching me) I found the corner of the bill on the table…and bits and chewed pieces EVERYWHERE. I am disabled and starting to really get angry with a “friend” who showed up on my doorstep with her. I wanted to adopt an older cat because I wanted to avoid the kitten nonsense I’m now going through. I love her…and she’s absolutely adorable…but when I find her doing things she shouldn’t be doing (like chewing money and climbing up my curtains and chewing my furniture) I get a little miffed. Does anyone know when they STOP this behavior? I’ve had kittens my WHOLE life….and just had to put my 18 year old angel down in December. I have NEVER EVER had a kitten like this. NOT ONE BIT! I’m assuming it’s a “calico” thing case the vet looked at me and said…”well…she IS a calico now…isn’t she…” Am I going to end up having an MS flareup from all the stress and chewing and over destruction….or is she going to calm down soon? I just don’t know what to do… 🙁

    Reply
  45. AvatarHarrison M

    My calico cat loves making funny facial expressions. 3 years old now and she’s still the best cat I’ve ever had. Thanks for all this great information.

    Reply
  46. AvatarKelyi

    Hi everyone!! I just acquired my third Cali about 5 weeks ago.
    Got her from the humane society – She is such an amazing kitty,
    as were my other two. But this one is so much more affectionate
    and playful. There were three cali’s and the society but only Spike
    (her name is Spiker Bean Baby) struck me as the one that needed me.
    Little did I know at the time I needed her more. She sits with me like
    a dog would, watches as I play computer games and when I watch my
    shows. She sleeps on my pillow right above my head. Spike makes a
    toy our of everything – and I let her….. the only thing that hurts my
    feelers is that I have to leave her every day for work and she does stress
    over this. When I get home she is all over me and honestly I love it. I
    spend the time to calm her, play with her and at that time I give her a
    special meal – I’ve started that in the mornings as well and it seems to
    make leaving her a little better, she still mad at me and won’t come to
    say good-bye but the coming home is still awesome.

    Reply
  47. AvatarNicolas San Juan

    This is cool, although i honestly think my cat might be a calico hes mostly black, white and grey but mixed in are light brown oringeish patches ,but what do i know honestly im just glad hes around 12 yrs old and still going simi strong . Hes the sweetest cat I know and i hold him close to my heart .

    Reply
  48. AvatarHelen

    ‘In cats, the gene that dictates fur color is located on the X chromosome. Therefore, if a female shuts down the X chromosome carrying the gene for white fur in one particular spot of the body, the gene will produce orange fur in that spot instead (and visa versa).’

    That is not correct, the white on a calico cat is due to the white spotting gene, not X inactivation.

    Reply
  49. AvatarAngie

    hello, looking for some help here, my calico Simba, is 10 years old and about 8 months ago suffered from a seizure. I got her to the ER and they couldnt figure out the cause, unless i wanted to pay for an MRI, which i couldnt afford. Her blood results and xrays came back normal so we moved on and it has never happened again but I keep a close eye on her. Her behavior is that of a true Calico-wonderful loving personality (to me and her father when im not around) but thats it Haha. She will meow and after a recent move she is showing signs of some
    sort of pain I can not figure out:(. Any help is appreciated- 10 weeks ago she was howling at night and laying in the same spot for fays getting up once a day to use the bathroom, she was lathargic but eating/drinking and using the bathroom. After 3 days went to ER and same thing couldnt figure out the problem but gave her Gabapatin for pain and she got better but now shes acting like something wrong again. Shes so brave and doesnt want to show pain, but I know somethings really off. These are her main symptoms-she urinates a lot more than usual at one time (i notice a lot of liquid in the litterbox), she doesnt eat as much but is eating wet food (chicken indoor natures balance and hairball control science diet) I tried the urinary tract one by SD but it seemed to make her symptoms worse. The main thing thats off is the way she lays down she will sit on all four paws not lay on her belly and just looks isnt sleeping much. It breaks my heart her potassium levels were low and sugar was slightly elevated when we got her blood work last. Thats why i dont know if its kidney issues- yesterday though i smelled urine on her and now im wondering could this be bladder crystals!?? Monday i will get her blood taken unless she gets worse then straight to the ER. Shes my baby rescued her as a kitty and shes my only kitty because her temper, I treat her better than my partner, I dont want her in pain.

    Reply
  50. AvatarAngie

    Hello, responding to the plastic bag chewing cat parent; my Calico I just posted about, Simba has loved chewing on anything plastic especially bags too. This is a disorder called, Pica I was told. It can be very serious to her health if you leave any plastic out. Simba has gone through extreme measures to find any sort of plastic because I do not keep any (anymore) in her reach. She has even gone as far as chewing tags on my comforter when she couldnt get her hands on any. Its bad because it started with chewing then I started finding 3×3” pieces of bags in her stool!!! I didnt know where it came from until i found a garbage bag of clothes under my bag all chewed up:(. That was the last shes chewed. My bf makes fun of her like its addiction for her , it is quite funny now since nothing has happened from it and have a plastic free house. But if I didnt know about it she couldve had a serious blockage from it, or worse. So, I just wanted to share my experience with you, and anyone else and hopefully it can keep your kitty’s in good health.
    Thanks for reading, also Simba has been experiencing some strange health issues we cant figure out yet, they say she may suffer from a tumor in her brain from a strange neurological seizure episode 8 months ago. but cant afford an MRI and even if thats the case they cant do much. Her symptoms now are pain and infrequent but heavy urination, eating less, constipation, but more oddly is her behavior- shes sitting with her head down at times, and on all fours instead of laying on her belly. Her blood showed low potassium(right below normal) 2 months ago, and high sugar(could be from stress at ER) anyways. She hasnt had any plastic in months so I really dont think theres any relation but she did vomit 10 days ago liquid and this solid 2” long hairball, she never vomits. Yesterday she semed to be having some stomach contactions and swallowed whatever came up…any help is appreciated the vet couldnt figure it out last time and now im looking for a new one. She my baby shes just like all these comments, quirky, skittish, but so loving. I am looking into these bladder/kidney crystals, lmk any thoughts anyone may have, Thanks!

    Reply
  51. AvatarTes

    I just adopt a calico cat from petsmart. Today is her 14days with me. She has a unique personalities and characteristics.. She is my princess, and I love her very much like my own child. So far, I dont see any problem with her. I can give her a bath and trim her nails without any problem. She is lovable, indeed.

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