Оrаnge Cаts Are Оnе of the Моst Unusuаl, and Hеre’s Whу

The famous red cat, Garfield, portrayed ginger tabbies as extreme food lovers and lazybones. However, there are way more curious sides to them. They’re gregarious, have muzzles full of freckles, and are some of the most popular cat colors to be adopted. Red cats are definitely creatures that know how to get people’s attention.

We fell in love with these colorful felines and can’t wait to tell you what we learned about them.

1. They can be found in different cat breeds.

There is a popular belief that ginger tabbies are a separate breed, but actually, this isn’t true. A tabby is just a pattern on a cat’s coat and there are many breeds of cats that can have it! For example, there are ginger Maine Coons, American Bobtails, Persians, Oriental Shorthairs, or Ocicats who proudly wear ginger fur with various spots and stripes.


2. They have different patterns but share an “M” mark.

Interestingly, all ginger cats are tabbies, though not all tabbies are ginger. They come with various coat patterns like mackerel, spotted, patched, or ticked — and some of them have very distinct spots and stripes while others may look like they have none at all. However, most of them have one distinct common feature: their foreheads are marked with a pattern that resembles the letter “M.”


3. They share something in common with red-headed humans.

The pheomelanin is a pigment that is responsible for the orange color in human hair, and it can also be found in cat fur. If its level gets higher than the dark pigment, eumelanin, the hair color tends to turn ginger.


4. They often have freckles.

These little dark spots are often found on their noses, around the eyes, or on their paws. This happens due to a special genetic condition called lentigo, which mostly affects ginger cats. Such felines have more pigment-producing cells in their skin that actively multiply and turn into black or brown spots. Calico, tortoiseshell, or flame-point cats can also develop freckles (which is rare), but ginger cats are more likely to have them.


5. They’re mostly male.

Their special “ginger” gene, which produces their distinctive color, is on the X chromosome. A female has 2 X chromosomes, and to become ginger, she needs 2 copies of them — while a male needs only 1. Thanks to this, there is roughly 1 female orange tabby for every 3 males.

Interestingly, another cat type that has a significant gap between the number of males and females is the calico cat. Fewer than 1 in every 1,000 calico cats are male!


6. Their color earns them a lot of love.

Many people perceive orange tabbies as affectionate and loving cats. Perhaps it’s because they are drawn to the bright colors of their fur and tend to play and pet them more. Either way, thanks to this perception, ginger felines are more likely to be adopted than cats of other colors.


7. They love to “talk.”

There’s a connection between a cat’s coat color and the way it behaves. While tortoiseshell cats tend to be very independent, pushy, and often become attached to one person, the orange tabbies love to steal the show. National Geographic calls them the “most gregarious” of all. So, if you love interactive cats, this one might be the perfect friend for you.


8. They can put on weight fast.

As it turns out, the famous story about the lazy cat named Garfield might be true — ginger cats do love to eat! Moreover, they are prone to obesity. This can lead to a bunch of unpleasant consequences like joint damage, liver problems, or even cancer. Because of this, their owners need to watch their diets carefully.


Bonus: People don’t hesitate to share photos of their beloved ginger tabbies!

One could get lost in these eyes.


“Fred is pretty — she’s 5 and a half and kind of crazy.”


“This is my home workspace and my personal, beautiful, red assistant. We work together very effectively.”


“I’m slightly obsessed with my Alphie. Also, I’m pretty sure the phone’s ’portrait mode’ was created for cute kitty pictures.”

“It’s been a day…”


“My ginger baby, Mango, trying out a new yoga pose”


“Ginger (the mother) and Parda (her daughter) being adorable together — their paws form a heart shape.”


“A pair of fluffy ginger paws to cheer you up!”


“Caught red-handed trying to steal some raw cauliflower, which is inexplicably one of his favorite foods to nom.”


“This is 3 months vs 13 months. He found us covered in fleas weighing less than a pound. Now he’s our big beautiful man!”

What cat breed do you have? Let’s share our photos and stories about our felines in the comment

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