All About Calico Cats

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Medically reviewed by  JoAnna Pendergrass, DVM
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Cat comfortably seated in a scratching bed.

Whether you’re thinking about getting a cat yourself or not, you’ve probably come across the wonderful calico at some point. Who hasn’t?

What Makes Calico Cats So Special?

Calico cats have an air of mystery about them along with a rich history, not to mention their unique appearance…

But what really makes calico cats so special?

They aren’t even a breed of cat! Calicos get their name from the coloration of their coat!

In this post, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about calico cats, along with 10 fun facts about them. Let’s dive in!

Calico Cat Appearance

Cat poised in a playful pouncing position

Because calico cats are not a breed unto themselves, calicoes will have unique and varied personalities influenced by a wide range of factors.

Calicoes are often described as the world’s most colorful cats. After all, they are one of the only cats to exhibit such a wide range of color variations in its coat.

The calico is not a breed of cat but a domestic cat with a variety of genetic color variations.
The most common calico is a tri-color pattern of orange, black, and white. It is possible, however, to have a calico pattern with shades of cream, red, blue-black, and even chocolate brown.

Calicoes with less intense coloration are known as dilute calico cats. They are primarily white in color with patches of light color ranging from blue-gray to cream to strawberry blonde.

You can find calico cats across many distinct breeds with the exception of solid-color and pointed breeds like the Bombay, Russian Blue, British Shorthair, Siamese, and Himalayan. Because calico cats occur across so many different cat breeds, it’s sometimes hard to tell whether the cat is a calico or actually a tortoiseshell.

The best way to tell is to examine the calico patches.

A tortoiseshell cat usually has the primary colors (red and black) woven throughout the coat while a calico will have distinctive solid-colored patches (like black patches or white patches).
Some of the breeds you can find in calico appearance include Maine Coon, Manx, Persian, American Shorthair, Japanese Bobtail, Siberian, and more.

Personality and Behavior

Calico cats aren’t a breed unto themselves, so we can’t assign breed-specific personality or behavioral traits to them. Like many cats, calicoes will develop their unique personalities according to many factors, such as socialization and life experiences.

Because calico cats are so different from one another, it’s particularly exciting to get one.
You could get a laid-back, mellow cat that enjoys being around you and wants to be your loyal companion.

You could also get the opposite: an aloof, high-maintenance cat with an attitude.
That being said, many calico owners report that their cats share a similar personality with tortoiseshell cats – they called it “tortitude.”

Torties are known for being spunky, sassy, and independent by nature. Calico cats may share these characteristics but, like we mentioned, you never quite know what you’re going to get. Plus, calico cats can’t be bred, so they’re even less likely to share common characteristics.

Mysterious Genetics

The genetics of calico cats are quite fascinating and have long been the topic of scientific research. We could really get into the weeds about these genetics, but your eyes might glaze over. So, we’ll keep this as short and simple as possible.

The black and orange patches of fur that characterize these cats are a result of the genetic phenomenon called “X-chromosome inactivation”.

In cats, the gene that dictates fur color is located on the X chromosome. Nearly all calico cats are female, so they have two X chromosomes. The rare male calico cats have one X and one Y chromosome.

In addition to determining a cat’s coat color, X chromosomes have numerous genes that code for proteins that are necessary for survival.

With females having two X chromosomes, this double dose of ‘survival’ genes could be toxic. To compensate for this double dose, one of the X chromosomes is randomly inactivated when the calico kitten is just a tiny ball of cells in the mother’s womb.

Thus, if the X chromosome carrying the gene for white fur in one particular spot of the body is inactivated, the orange gene might become active in that spot instead (and vice 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.

You could have a orange tabby with calico patches of white fur or black fur just as easily as a black cat with calico patches of white and orange fur.

Health and Lifespan

Cat standing confidently on a table.

While the rare male calico may encounter some health issues and have shorter life expectancies, female calico cats are just as healthy as cats with other coat patterns, with an average lifespan of 12 to 16 years.

The average lifespan of calico cats is 12 to 16 years. Is this more or less than the average lifespan for most cat breeds?

Yes and no. It depends if the calico cat is male or female.

Male calicoes tend to live shorter lives than female calicoes because of a genetic condition called Klinefelter’s Syndrome. This syndrome is the presence of two X chromosomes and one Y chromosome – in other words, a male calico cat has an extra X chromosome.

Klinefelter’s Syndrome can lead to numerous health problems, such as the increased risk of broken bones, joint pain, and diabetes. These health problems can result in shorter lifespans for male calicoes.

Regardless whether your cat is a male or female calico, you can help them have a good quality of life by providing them with good shelter, feeding them a nutritious diet, and providing quality veterinary care with the help of a solid pet health insurance plan.

How Rare Are Male Calico Cats?

Male calicoes are rare. A study by the University of Missouri’s College of Veterinary Medicine estimated that only 1 in 3,000 calico cats are male.

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 along with a healthy and balanced diet.

Calico vs. Tortoiseshell Cats and Tabby Cats

Cat sitting on a red sofa, attentively observing its surroundings.

All calico cats have tricolor coats, but these coats also come in other patterns, like tortoiseshell.

Calico cats aren’t the only cats with unique coat colors. Tortoiseshell cats (aka, torties) and tabby cats have them, too. It can be tricky to differentiate a calico from these other cats, so we’ll help you out.

Calico cats have three coat colors (white, orange, and black), while torties typically are bi-colored (marbled orange and black). Torties have very little white coat, which usually appears as small spots on the face, chest, or paws.

Tabbies have an unmistakable ‘M’ on their forehead. Calicoes don’t have this on their forehead, so that is an easy-to-spot difference between calicoes and tabbies. Also, tabbies have distinct tabby stripes, along with prominent ginger and black patches.

10 Fun Facts About Calico Cats

  1. Females dominate – The unique genetics of calico cats that determine coat color mean that 99.9% of calico cats are female cats. Remember, coat color is linked to female sex chromosomes (XX).
  2. Nearly all male calicoes are sterile– Male calicoes often have Klinefelter’s syndrome (XXY chromosomal makeup), a genetic condition that causes sterility, among many other health problems.
  3. They represent a state – Because of their color, calico cats were declared the official state cat of Maryland in 2001. A calico cat’s fur colors are a mixture of white, black, and orange, the same as feather colors of the Baltimore Oriole, which is Maryland’s state bird. Only two other states have state cats!
  4. Beckoning cat -The famous Beckoning cat character is based on a calico cat.
  5. 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”.
  6. 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 (Maneki-Neko).
  7. Calicoes are brave – A calico cat saved Japan’s railway station from being closed down. In 2007, the 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. The calico cat became a celebrity, causing a 17% increase in station traffic. The calico cat’s good luck is indeed true.
  8. Calicoes are everywhere – Considering how rare calico cats are, they have really spread around the world. Calico cats were traced migrating along 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.
  9. You cannot breed them– You can’t breed a calico cat because they happen only by chance. This chance occurrence is why they are so rare and considered to be a lucky charm.
  10. 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!

Happen to have a calico cat? Know anyone who does? Tell us about it in the comments below!

Wish you could learn more about the genes that make your cat special? Cat DNA testing could be the answer. Click here to read our review of the Basepaws cat DNA test kit.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are all calico cats female?

Yes, for the most part. Because their coloring is linked to the X chromosome and cats with two X chromosomes (XX) are female, 99.9% of all calico cats are female. It is possible for a calico cat to be male, but it is exceedingly rare.

Can calico cats be male?

Though it is very rare, male calico cats do exist. Male calico cats are most likely to have a chromosomal abnormality that gives them two X chromosomes and one Y chromosome (XXY).

How long do calico cats live?

Calico is a coloration rather than a breed, so it’s difficult to say whether calico cats are different from other cats in terms of lifespan. Indoor calico cats generally live 12 to 16 years while outdoor cats have shorter lifespans around 7 to 9 years.

How rare are male calico cats?

According to a study conducted at the University of Missouri’s College of Veterinary Medicine, only 1 in every 3,000 calico cats is male. Because they are so rare, they are often considered good luck charms.

Are calico cats mean?

Owners of cats with sex-linked color patterns (like tortoiseshell or tortie cats) often report a higher frequency of aggression than owners of cats with other colors. Calico cats aren’t always “mean,” per se, but they do tend to be more independent than other cats.

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About Kate Barrington

Kate Barrington is a writer with over twelve years of experience in the pet industry. She is an NAVC-certified Pet Nutrition Coach and has completed coursework in therapeutic nutrition, raw feeding, and the formulation of homemade diets for pets at an accredited university. Kate enjoys cooking, reading, and doing DIY projects around the house. She has three cats, Bagel, Munchkin, and Biscuit.

196 thoughts on “All About Calico Cats”

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  1. Nicki

    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!

    1. Gadgetman

      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.

      1. Autumn

        Instead of feeding her that awful Science Diet crap that’s full of cheap grain fragments, vegetable matter and by-products, put her on a good commercial raw diet, or @n all-meat canned diet. Her bladder stones are caused by vegetable and grain in cat foods WHICH CATS CAN’T DIGEST. 99% of cat foods are inappropriate for an obligate carnivore like cats are, and they cause: 1) obesity, 2) hyperthyroidism, 3) chronic renal failure, 4) diabetes, and 5) bladder inflammation, FUS, cystitis. ALL of it is because the food sold as “cat food” is slow poison to obligate carnivores, like cats. Would you feed soy, wheat, carrots or peas to a tiger? Of course not. So why do people feed it to their cats? Because manufacturers make billions of dollars every year by duping well-meaning cat-owners into feeding cheap, meat-flavored garbage to their cats. They dont care that they kill bilkions of cats. They only care that they make a ton of money doing it. Cats should live to between 20 and 25 years, but few live past 15, and dry food is the primary culprit.

        Don’t take my word for it. Look it up. The only ones telling you to feed dry food are the manufacturers, and the vets who are educated (indoctrinated) by those manufacturers.

        1. Monique

          Most don’t read the labels of what they consume themselves. Let alone of what the offer their pets.
          It would be at least logical to do the research Barbara and not condemn Autumns comment.
          There are many humans who have realized you don’t need a pharmacy if you learn how biology responds to excess, deficiency or poor combinations of nutrients and synthetics. Meds and processed diets merely address symptoms. While proper nutrition can provide the healing and prevention of disease caused by ingredients mixed in labs and mass produced in machines with added pretty colors and over stimulating flavors.
          The body pet and pet owner a like is made of the same miraculous particles as the earth we are on and all this earth produces for us to consume and sustain life.

          1. Susan

            We have a feral tortoise shell along with 4 other feral cats. The calico is brave and has an attitude, but we love her unique personality. She showed up as a kitty, and eventually came in the house to eat, as do the other cats. They all have shelter outdoors with beds. Peggy spends a lot of time in a bed indoors with an older male tabby, Gus Gus. They are best friends and spend a lot of time grooming each other. What joy they bring my husband and I.

        2. That One Human

          Autumn, now that you have us crushed by the weight of our guilt and shame, can you provide a quality healthy diet for our cats? You’ve shamed us now redeem us. 🙂

        3. Carolyn Mil

          I have a 5 month old calico kitten and she is Felv+ so we try to keep her diet consistent and as natural as possible to prevent any issues. We’ve found great success with Merrick brand dry kitten food and we feed her purina kitten favorites cups for wet food. she loves both types of foods and we’ve never had a problem with them. Her fur looks great. Highly recommend Merrick dry food for all kittens and cats.

          1. Alex

            You looked for most natural food for kittens and you come up with dry food really!???. Have you ever heard of natural spices appropriate food? Please go to dr. Becker wabside or watch her YouTube videos with open and critical mind for your animals sake before you do too much damage. Reading and understanding food labels is another crucial skill these days.
            Best wishes!!!

          2. Eva N

            Dry food is garbage as well , I am sorry to tell you. If you buy organic meat and give it to you animals – you can choose raw or cooked – this is the best you can do for you animals. I NEVER ever buy dog “food’ or cat ‘food”.
            Book : Smarter Than You Think : A Revolutionary Approach to Teaching and Understanding Your Dog in Just a Few Hours This revolutionary approach to teaching and understanding a dog in just a few hours covers everything from housebreaking to problem behavior and diet.
            If you read it – you will find out how dog/cat ” food” is made. And also why you never , ever should feed you animals dry ‘ food ” .
            They eat it because they dont have a choice – they eat this garbage to stay alive, because their owners only give them garbage.

      2. Barbara

        Please dont listen to autumn, please consult a trusted vet, or research compliant diets on your own.. I’ve not yet met a vet that recommends a raw diet

        1. Jai

          I agree….
          An all meat diet can be quite harmful for a domesticated feline. Not to mention the ridiculous comparison to a tiger! Comparing a cat to a tiger is like comparing a worm to a python….. Can you feed a rodent to an earthworm??? Of course not!

          1. Monique

            Hmm instead of drinking more natural water exercising and getting sunlight while barefoot in the grass we wear $200 shoes made of dead animals (but you love your cat) take meds to wake up, meds to sleep, meds to help you shit out imaginary science project food. Pay a Dr $1000 to give you pills that mask symptoms you wouldn’t even have if you only tried to remember that real food doesn’t have labels. And you might need the antidepressants because that chicken you ate for dinner was depressed because he grew up without his beak or feathers on a crowded shit covered floor taking more pills than you and your cat.

          2. Nonie

            I think that Autumn is right. It is quite usual to see people in the supermarket grabbing whatever they see first for feeding their pets. And the comparison with the tiger is perfectly logical, given that the tiger is the largest living cat species. She is also correct about the fact “manufacturers make billions of dollars every year by duping well-meaning cat-owners into feeding cheap, meat-flavored garbage to their cats.” For the sake of our pets, we all should take a moment to read labels…

        2. Jess

          That’s because vets get money from food companies. Our dog has been on raw since he was eating food and he has not had one issue.

        3. Misty

          Yes listen to Autumn! My Veterinarian is a Holistic Naturopathic Veterinarian and she also agrees. A trusted Veterinarian doesn’t mean it a correct Veterinarian. They go by old standards and unhealthy food makers such as Hills Science Diet, and Purina fund what little nutrition courses the Vets have to take while promoting their food! ALL DRY KIBBLE IS BAD! Especially for cats prone to bladder infections, kidney stones and kidney problems. PERIOD. Go to Catinfo dot com which is written by another Holistic Veterinarian.

      3. MA

        I am an Alicoo KCAt. I am strong and swift…. I always hope core is the best. I hope EVERYTHING works out so…. I CAN FALL apart. Wouldn’t thT b kewl? THIS IS NOT A SUICIDE LETTER…..EWE.


      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!

    3. Slamina

      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

      1. Shelley

        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.

        1. Pam

          I have a patched calico who is just beatiful. She was a field kitten I adopted to save her. She couldnt have been more than 6 weeks old. She’s an indoor/outdoor, of course with a seresto collar and chipped, but she’s the perfect cat. Brings me mice and moles and very loyal. Quite the talker too. I wouldn’t have any other kind now. Just love her.

    4. Lisa

      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.

    5. Karen Williams pet well being .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

    6. Kathy 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.

      1. Debbie

        Hi I have a Calico named Rascal! She’s 22 years old! I just heard of my sisters friend who had Calico that lived 22 years! Most of my cats live very long! I have 2 male cats and she dominates them ! Has her own chair to Kat, bests them up, and very temperamental! Gota b careful where I pay her! She can get mean to me , but she don’t mean it! Someymy bus especially Mr. Elliot, who is 3X her size, gets fed up with Her Stanley Queenlike manor! She’s been to Vet and I thought she was I’ll cuz she eats like crazy, pees a lot, and drinks a lot of water! She had $900 worth of test and said she’s perfectly healthy got a bit of Arthritis in her back! Bought her a heating pad and she loves it! I feed her Fridkies and she’s great! Very stubborn and dominating! Love her tho

    7. Me 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.

    8. Shirley Marie Robinson

      My calico kitten seems to have bladder issues as well. And maybe sinus problems. As a kitten she needs food with fat and protein but I have noticed that she likes urinary tract food by Purina. Her name is silver girl and she is worth the money and the energy that I put into her.

      1. Cecilia Twist

        i have a calico kitten.her name is autumn. she is very loving,has a attitude,& is temperamental, she will not eat any cat food with fish in it.she eats wet & dry cat food. she will be 11 months old on the 12th of this month.she wears me out watching her. she loves to play ball, she runs after it and brings it back to me to roll again,i keep her in doors. if u tell her to lay down she will, & when i tell her its bedtime she will beat me to the bedroom.i think she’s half dog.i love her so cost me dearly at the vet but i’d do it all over again. i could not let her lay there & die..

    9. Monica McNeal

      My calico is incredibly shy and skittish in spite of being raised in a quiet, safe home.

      There are a multitude of possible stressors, but clearly, if she is struggling with keeping hydrated I recommend a cat fountain (or two in different places) in a quiet, low traffic area that she frequents but is NOT near her litter.

      She clearly is experiencing a lot of anxiety. I had a formerly abused cat that took very well to a ‘kennel’. I gave her a little wooden nook to be her safe place in a quiet corner of my bedroom. When she went in, I NEVER disturbed her. It gave her a place to destress that was just for her, and then she really came out of her shell.

      Nature’s Miracle Cat Calming Spray can be used in areas she likes to be. The spray contains calming hormones to make her feel safe like when she was with mom as a kitten.

      Best of luck! Hope you and your girl can find some peace so you can focus on the love.

      1. willow the cat

        I have a 3 year old rescue white tortoiseshell. She’s extremely timid however she has become attached to member in my household, whom she depends on for support and reassurance. Nothing seemed to work to calm her down until we recently found out she finds sunbathing as a stress reliever. Her temperament changes completely when the suns out which isn’t always in UK. Does anyone know of any toys that might make her feel safer and less stressed as she enjoys her array of toys?

    10. Debra

      Well first don’t get stressed yourself, take a breath ! She is probably feeling insecure with other cats nearby, if she’s an inside house cat then action needs to be taken to ward off the visiting outside cats so she feels safe and queen of her home! Try noise makers that go off by sensors or water same way, there are commercial powders etc myself I’d rather stay with more natural and less invasive things ( you understand ) . My cat loves soft music and having one or two lol of my slippers to lay on along with other items! Important don’t stress! She will! Cuddle her and do your best to identify what you can do to help your little girl! Watch her diet, sometimes homeopathic is something to look at! Best to ya

    11. Ra'Mona

      It is the diet you are feeding her, try feeding a high quality wet food without grain or prepare homemade meals. Dry cibble could be the culprit. Talk with your vet, do some research, and see what happens. Good Luck!!!

    12. Candy

      Diet change can help lower the formation of crystals. Also, there is a product called Feliway that has a calming effect for cats that can be used in different forms. ie. plug-ins, sprays, I think they have collars too. There are also medications like anti-depressants that can be used. You can also figure out what is causing her the stress and fix it. Good luck

    13. Gail Hyde

      I empathize with all the troubles everyone is having, and admire all the patience and care y’all have shown to your kitties. But i am a little worried that anyone seeing all these posts would be scared to ever own a Calico! So i thought i’d be reassuring. I have owned a number cats over the years, 2 of which have been gorgeous calicoes, and both of which have been wonderfully behaved, entertaining and playful, sociable, lovable, and trouble-free. My current one, Catawba, is a long-haired sweety. I got her as a rescue kitten. She quickly made friends with my middle-aged white male cat, and taught him how to play and purr and seem young again! She is a moon-eyed little joy to have around (now almost 2 years old).

  2. Wanderer

    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

      1. *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?

  3. Randy 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

    1. Guillermo

      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.

      1. Rose

        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.

    2. Carol

      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.

    3. William Lockridge

      Let her define the nature of the relationship. I’ve had several Callies and they can be somewhat temperamental. They tend, in my experience, to be one or two person cats. They’re a little odd and I think that’s what makes them fun. Mine weighs all of 3 lbs. and the 70 pound Golden Retriever is scared of her, not because she’s mean but because the dog is a chickenshit . I’m not fond of cats but I love Calicos. They’re just different. Their personalities are like people’s. They all have idiosyncrasies that you either love or hate. As I said, I don’t care that much for cats but I LOVE my Calicos!

      1. Melissa Hinson

        I’m the same way. I’m not over fond of most cats. Well, in general. But, as specific, individual, cats, I’ve had a few in my life. I’ve loved. I call them ” cool” cats. They’ve all been a little…different. That’s the thing that makes them cool, lol. I really love calico cats and tortoiseshell cats, and I guess that’s why. Because they are way….different. And way cool. Even more so than the coolest of my prior cat friends. As I said, I’ve had other cats before. I’ve never set out to get a cat, though. The cats find me, then I get to know them, and now we’re fond of each other, and voila. I have a cat friend, again. That’s how I came to have a tortoiseshell cat I call Whimsy. And, in due time, her son, a golden tabby cat, called Nugget. Golden. Nugget. Get it? Yeah. Sorry. I call him Chicken Nugget sometimes because he gets scared, but he tries to bluff his way out of any one realizing he’s a bit scared. Like a boy, trying to be brave, you know? However, bluff failed. I realize it. Anyway, one day I’m out working in my garden, and this mottled black and orange cat comes up, out of nowhere. She has on one of those nasty flea collars. A purple one. Bleh! I don’t know this cat. Meaning, I live in an apartment complex, a small one, and I know most of the cats that people have. But, not this one. I can’t imagine where she came from. She was very friendly, wanting pets, and rubbing her head and body on me. I stroked her, and got her purring. I didn’t want to bring her in, and feed her because obviously a human creature had placed that poison strip around her neck. Therefore, she must have a home, with someone. I was reluctant to catnap her. Plus, I had no supplies for a cat. I would have had to feed her some leftover chicken I had. And, no litter box stuff. Very important. When I was ready to go in I told her she had to go back to her house. I didn’t shoo her away, or anything. Just told her she wasn’t my cat, so she had to go back home. She didn’t hang around, she left. A couple of days later, she was back. Uh oh. This time my little granddaughter, age 7, who lived with me at the time, was home. We were outside. Cat, meet tender hearted little girl. Little girl, meet cute, affectionate cat. I’ll spare you the details. Just know that was 3 years ago, and I now have a tortoiseshell cat I named Whimsy. I named her, after getting to know her, so I could give her a proper name that suited. My granddaughter, god love her, wanted to name her,” Snowball”. This is a black, and orange, with streaks of red, colored cat. About as much of a Snowball, as such a thing would have standing a chance in hell. Which is, nope, not at all. I’ve never had a tortoiseshell cat. Had a calico cat once though. Which my sister named, try and guess. Come on. One hint, It’s not Callie. All right. Fine. She named her, Patches. I don’t like naming animals obvious names, or names that don’t suit them. I like to get to know them, first. We should do that with people. I’m afraid, having never seen this kind of cat before, and I’m ashamed of this, and should be immediately punished for it, I said,” Oh god. Poor little cat. That’s the ugliest cat I’ve ever seen.” I know. I KNOW. Ok? I plead ignorance, and not being able to SEE what I was looking at. And I love all animals but didn’t really want a cat so I was trying to distance myself from her. There, happy? About a week after I had her with me, but, wait, here’s the deal. As I said, the cat found me. And I know that cats won’t stay with someone if they don’t want to. That’s part of that thing you seem to be speaking of, and that I agree with, that’s so likable about them. Cats, particularly these kind, are no bullshit. They are real. She obviously was over whoever put the purple collar on her, at any rate. She’s smart, too. I wasted no time in cutting that away. Yes, I had to cut it off. Plus, she was very thin, and very hungry. Idk what had happened. Probably nothing good. Perhaps the person got sick and couldn’t take care of her. Or they died. Or some horrible monster abandoned her. All I know is, she needed someone to look after her, and she decided to stay with me. And stay she has. Through thick, and thin. I’ve never been so honored, in my life. So, after about a week of her living with me, the cat I said was ” ugly” looked me, full, in the face, and cocked her head to one side. Like she was thinking about telling me something. The look on her face. Those particular patterns in her fur make her have this very wry, kind of fey, expression, if you follow. I said,” Oh my god! Your little face! You are so cute, and you look so, so, whimsical!” Boom. Meet Whimsy. And she nodded her head, once. Satisfied. Like, “There, finally, that’s what I was going to say, human.” She does things her way, on a whim. She is a whimsical thing, a funny thing, that delights me, for no reason, except she is delightful. Mostly. She’s still a cat. And, I found out about ” tortitude”. That particular attitude tortoiseshell cats, and calico cats seem to have. For one thing, Whimsy speaks sarcasm, fluently, with a look. She can say, “Whatever” better than the most, snarky of teenaged girls. Likewise,” Duh.” It was just along this time that I discovered she was pregnant. I had seen a monstrously large tiger striped Tom, prowling around. I hadn’t gotten her to the vet, that first week, for a checkup, shots, etc. I had been preoccupied with getting supplies, solving the dilemma of just calling her, “Cat”, until I knew her name, and getting over my,” What the hell just happened, here?” from being chosen to be a cat mom. I might have known, the fool with the cat flea collar hadn’t had her spayed. I said,” “Perfect”, Whimsy said,” What the F**k!?! Great.” She uses bad language, as well as, sarcasm, sometimes. Well, we went to the vet. But, not for her to be fixed. Not yet. We went to get her prenatal exam, basically. The vet checked her over, gave her what vaccinations she could have, while pregnant,( not many) and have the vet tell me how to keep her healthy, and what to feed her, to get some weight on her, and make sure she had good nutrition while she was pregnant for herself, and her kittens. And, although we were to come back, and have another checkup, before she had her babies, I went ahead and scheduled her to be fixed, as soon as we could after she’d had them. And that’s how I got 2 cats. When I never even started out looking to get one. I kept Whimsy’s son, Nugget. He was the only one that was colored that marmalade, striped color, out of her 6 kittens. He also has an “M” on his forehead. That makes him a tabby cat. A marmalade colored tabby cat. The rest of the kittens were coal black, with blue eyes, and tortoiseshell. He was the runt, and the others, all girls, were mean as hell to him. They crowded him out when he tried to nurse. He was different. My favorite. When they got to be 6wks old, and she’d weaned them, I started looking for homes for them. You have to know, me and Whimsy damn near had a nervous breakdown over the entire thing. The pregnancy, the birth, weaning, the kittens actually getting free and being here, there, everywhere. Like a plague of locusts, except furry, with tiny claws, and tiny poop. Whimsy had them, on my loveseat, and made me sit right there, beside her, while she gave birth to them. If I got up she tried to follow me. When I gingerly picked her up, taking my life into my own hands, and put her in the birthing box, she jumped out, went back to the loveseat and jumped up there. Perfect. I had that birthing box made up for her, all comfy, and padded, and covered with stuff that could be thrown away,or washed thoroughly, oh god. But, no. “Tortitude “showed up, and she wasn’t going in that damned box. That, and it was her first litter. I had to get all that padding out, and in addition, get more towels and stuff, and pad hell out of my loveseat. I like that loveseat. I didn’t want to have to burn it, later. Oh God! You’ve never seen surprise unless you could see the look on that cat’s face when that first kitten was born. It kinda matched mine. She turned to look behind her, like,” What the hell just happened back there?” And found, a slimy little rattling. A newborn kitten. She looked at me, with full “tortitude”, like,” What the hell did you do?” I said, “Hey. It wasn’t me. Go tell Tony the Tiger from a few months ago, I said, “Hi!” She said,” Whatever.” and commenced cleaning her baby. I marveled that once that initial surprise passed, instinct took over, and she knew what to do. She did great. All her babies lived, and stayed alive. Even Nugget. He was born last. She was a little startled by him, I think. Mr. Golden Haired Surprise, he was. But, then she was like,” Eh. His dad.” When I had to find homes for the kittens, I was sad. Kinda. But, no way could I keep 6 kittens, soon to be fertile cats, and their mother. I couldn’t give up Nugget though. He was so little. So left out. I brought him back home with me. I’m so glad I did. I could hear Whimsy, in the house, before I got the door open. These cats have a yowling type meow. Very similar to Siamese cats. I didn’t know any other cats could sound like Siamese do. These can. She was yowling, a meow. Loudly, over, and over. She was looking for her babies. Calling them. Oh s**t. My heart nearly broke. I unlocked the door, and she came running, and I gave her Nugget. She was rumbling in her chest, and chittering at him. Trilling, sort off. Have you heard tortoiseshell cats, or any cats do that? I can’t describe it, it almost sounds like a little monkey, to me. I’ve never heard a cat do that, before. Then she started purring. Nugget, that little maniac, he wanted to nurse. Now, she’d weaned those kittens, supposedly. But, she let him nurse. I guess her milk came back, or wasn’t completely dried up. Because he continued to nurse until he was almost as big as her. It verged on the obscene, before we got him to stop. Again, we lost our minds. He’d been deprived, and it was all his now. So, he made up for lost time. Poor Whimsy. She lived up on top of the tables, and sideboard in my house. She could barely jump down to the floor, without the Milk Monster, attacking her. If she was laying down, sleeping somewhere, Nugget would slither up, and latch on. I’d find them that way, asleep. She’d sit in the windowsill, in the sun, and watch the squirrels, and birds. She still loves to do that. I’ve heard her chittering at them, since then. Particularly, birds. Nugget is intrepid, though. He taught himself to climb up the side of one of the tables, and hop onto the low table in front of her window. And, surprise mother! Her face. Like,” Are you kidding me right now? This boy. How in the….fine. Whatever.” I’ve gotten a lot of laughs, watching them together. Whimsy did get spayed, once we got Nugget off the juice. Since she wasn’t nursing anymore, finally, and he was so big now, Nugget went with us. He got his checkup, and shots and he got neutered, too. My nerves won’t take any more kittens. And neither will Whimsy’s. They said Whimsy came out of the anesthesia, yowling. And kept yowling. Right until they put her in her carrier so I could bring her home. At home, Nugget was a bit spraddle legged. But, Whimsy, she was f**led up. Nugget went scampering by her, kinda close to her face, she wobbled, and fell over. It was pitiful. I put her in a soft bed, in the quiet bedroom. She slept it off, and came out the next day. She was sore, they gave me medicine for her, and she went back to her room, to sleep. Probably because of her kid. He was fine. Ball less. But, fine. I hadn’t considered the issues, you see, of what having a mother, a female, and her son, a male, both fertile, in the same house were going to cause. Yeah. Well, let’s just say Whimsy slapped the crap out of him and hissed at him, a couple of times, before it was all over. It’s like having a couple of little kids. Or really, a couple of teenagers. I didn’t know. The cats I’ve had did not do all of this crap.
        I was very sick, a few months ago. I’d gotten sepsis from a f**king infected tooth. Not the coronavirus, thank god. This was in Febuary, in Southeast Texas, in the boondocks. It wasn’t here, yet. Well, officially, anyway, but I wonder. Anyway, I want everyone to know that an abscessed tooth is an emergency. Do not mess around, making excuses. If you ever get one, don’t delay, go immediately and get antibiotics if you have to carjack somebody to do it. First of all, you’ll be in so much pain, you can’t believe it. And secondly, all the structures in your mouth and face are very vascular. Your lymph nodes are close. So, your brain. It’s very easy to get septicemia and then go into septic shock from the infection getting into your bloodstream. You can die from this. People have. I almost did. I was so sick. I had a high fever, with a shaking chill. The cats, they knew. They were very worried. Whimsy never left my side. When I’d lay down, she’d come curl up against my side, to give me comfort and warmth. Nugget, he did the same, on the other side. They were trying to take care of me. When I managed to get up, they would follow me, right on my heels. But, they weren’t twinning around my ankles. More like escorting me. They didn’t want to go outside. If one did, the other one stayed in. Then when that one came back, the other one would go out. It’s like they decided not to leave me alone. Well, I ended up in the ER. They did an emergency tracheostomy in my neck there, because my throat, my airway, was nearly swollen shut, and they hooked me up to a ventilator, using the trach. I had gone unconscious, already. My blood pressure dropped, my O2 sat. dropped. I was in septic shock. They sent me 150 miles away, to a big hospital, where I had emergency surgery, and stayed in Critical Care ICU, for 4 days. Then, another 2 days in regular ICU, and another 2, in a regular hospital room. I came very close to dying. That infection moved so fast, I didn’t realize I was almost out of time. I had told myself that night, before I went to the E.R.,” Tommorow, I’m going to just go be a walk in, at the doctor’s office. I need antibiotics.” I didn’t know, if I had gone to sleep like I soon wanted to do, there wouldn’t have been a tommorow., for me. My poor cats, they would have just been there, lying close to me. The thought of it all still gives me the shivers. When I came to, the nurses had those air compression boots on my lower legs to prevent blood clots forming. Are you familiar with those? They inflate, and squeeze, then deflate, and loosen. Most people hate those. They complain that they startle them, wake them up. I didn’t mind. I thought it was my cats, sitting on each of my legs, rythmically kneading my legs with their paws, lol. Press, release, press, release. I spent Valentine’s Day there. I got up, and got moving, to get out of there., though. The coronavirus was jumping off, and I was in a freaking hospital. Not good. And, I was worried about Whimsy, and Nugget. My mom was grudgingly throwing food in their bowls. Long back story. She lives across the parking lot, from me. Yes, she knew I was sick. No, she didn’t help me. It’s just me. Me, and Whimsy, and Nugget. I knew they’d be scared. And worried. The last time they saw me, I’d been very sick. Then, I left. Then, I didn’t come back. They were alone. What would you think, and feel, if you were a cat? Exactly. When I got home, there they were. Waiting. They were so happy to see me. They galloped to me. I love it when cats run like that. It’s hilarious. I was so happy to see them. And, I wasn’t dead. Not yet, anyway. So, Yay! I could hardly take a step without both of them trying to do figure 8’s around my legs. I was thinking, with my luck, I’m going to fall over them, break a hip, and back I go, to the hospital, lol. But, no. I went and lay down on my, still clean, even after a cat giving birth on it, love seat ( I’m small), and I patted the cushion and said,” Come on guys, get in where you fit in.” and Whimsy, and Nugget, my cat friends, my comfort, and joy, my ride or die buddies, jumped up, and each one sat on a leg. And, they began kneading them with their paws, and purring. Press, release, press, release, press, release. And, we quarantined, happily, ever, after.
        That’s my Tortoiseshell/ Tabby Cat Tale.
        Sorry, it’s so long. Thank you, for letting me tell it. I guess I needed to. I was going to simply comment, a short comment, about feeling the same. But, thank you, if you actually read all of it. You don’t have to reply, or anything. I just liked how you got that, about cats, or THESE type cats, being like people. But, really, better than most people. Our pets, our cats, we love them. They love us. We want to take care of each other. That’s what we should all be doing, really. Stay safe, everybody. Just hold on, a little while longer. Just pet your cats.

        1. Linda Burwell

          What a wonderful story! Are you a writer? You should be! Yes l have a calico kitty, Lily, who is 6 months old.. she is a pill and her favorite thing right now is to bite me! She has love bites and lm mad at you bites for me. l hope she grows out of the bad bites! She doesn’t give kisses yet..the licking kind. Yes she is sure diffrent..l have had torties mainly in my kitty lifetime.
          Again thanks so much for your great story!

        2. Angie Bray

          I’m glad you told your story! I couldn’t stop reading it till I got to the end. I was reading because I adopted a female cat with the colors that are described two months ago. She’s five years old and I am 82. She has all the characteristics everyone has described except, thank God the feline urinary problems. I hope that’s not in our future. She is a treasure and is sitting right next to me on MY love seat.Your story was delightful thank you

  4. Mandyshines

    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.

  5. Mackayla

    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?”

  6. Julia

    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.

    1. Lacy 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.

    2. Karen

      My calico lady diana was like ur calico she sleep under a baby blanket or in bed under covers with 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

  7. Julia

    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?

  8. Caroline

    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.

  9. Becky

    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.

    1. Spirits' PollyAnna

      I have same cat but also Polydactyl (hemmingway)…i wish i understood her meows and clicks and…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 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 no more outside .lol..and so now she acting like a caged ferrel cat lol..but the meowing tho aarrghh lol

  10. Monica 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. ?

  11. Tom

    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.

    1. Roberta

      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.

      1. Cathy

        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.

      2. Allen 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

    2. Karen Williams

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

    3. Debbie 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.

  12. Rachel

    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.

    1. Cathy

      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.

    2. Marisa 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.

    3. William Lockridge

      One thing I know about Callis is that, once they pick their person, they want things to remain the same regarding the relationship. If you change things, they WILL, retaliate. They truly are a “different breed of cat” as they say.

  13. Lillian 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.

  14. Beverly 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.

    1. William Lockridge

      It’s been my experience that most callies don’t like being picked up. I had one that would tolerate it for about 30 seconds, then those claws got really sharp. It seems like they’re all that way. They’re in charge and that’s it.

  15. Roberta

    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.

  16. terrie 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!

    1. Linda 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?

      1. William Lockridge

        It takes quite awhile for bad behaviours to go away with these cats. They’re hard headed as hell. Be patient, be predictable, and, eventually, the bad behaviours will go away. Callies like to think they’re in charge and, if you allow it, they’ll take charge, leading to the types of behaviors you spoke of. She will pick a favorite person, they always do. Once she does, and she misbehaves, deny her access to that person for a couple of hours when she misbehaves. Eventually, she’ll figure it out. Once they pick out their fav, not having access to them really gets their attention. They are sort of like the feline version of a Pitbull. Al they want to do is please their favorite person. This is a long process, don’t expect miracles, but she’ll come around.

  17. Diane

    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!

  18. matthew 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!

  19. Dary 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.

  20. Slamina

    Crystals..oh 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. 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

  21. Barbara

    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.

    1. William Lockridge

      I’ll get hell for this, especially from some of the “experts” but the way I broke most of mine of the biting and clawing things was, tell her to stop (these cats are smart and understand a lot more of what we’re saying than we think) and then, if she didn’t, I had a very small (probably 1/16th) dowel rod and I would crack her on the ass with it. It wasn’t big enough to hurt her, but it got the point across. She/they didn’t like the sting so eventually they got the message and most of them stopped.

  22. ashley 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.

    1. William Lockridge

      Well then, you have a true Calico. They are hard headed, a one or two person cat, and the more you try to stop them from behaving obnoxiously, the more obnoxious they tend to become. They are very vocal, very picky about their food, and they love, love, love to climb. They are truly a different breed of cat but, then again, that’s what makes them interesting IMHO.

  23. Crazy 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.

  24. Barb

    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.

  25. Jeannette

    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.

  26. Shauna 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.

  27. Tialisa

    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

  28. CJ

    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.

  29. CJ

    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.

  30. Robert 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

  31. Destiny 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?

  32. Swig

    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.

  33. Tommy 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

  34. Lexi

    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!!

  35. Lissa 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!

  36. Gail 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.

    1. Candy

      Hi Gail, I love your story. In Aug of 21 I adopted a 2 yo Calico from a shelter two cities away from me. I had seen her on a pet adoption site but had wound up there quite by accident, I was searching about information on fostering since that is what I had been doing and planned on continuing with that. Being 70 yo and just having had a heart attack, I worried about owning an animal and it outliving me. But it was one of those accidents that was meant to be. And I adopted the sweetest Calico who is my angle wrapped in fur. She is my world. She had been given up by her original owners and then adopted and returned twice after that because “she was too shy and skittish.” Luckily for me, she just wasn’t in the right place. She is thriving in my home and seems to love everyone that visits, including my brother’s dog!

  37. Gail 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.

  38. Amy 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.

  39. Jen

    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..

  40. Barbara 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.

  41. K’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?

  42. Loretta

    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… 🙁

    1. William Lockridge

      It sounds like she is a true Calico. “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?”
      If she’s a “true Calico”, the answer to your question is NEVER, sorry. not what you were hoping to hear I know. Calicos are truly a different breed of cat. You either love them or hate the,,, I don’t believe there is an “in between” . If there is, I’ve never found it and I’ve had 9 or 10. The only other cat that I can tolerate is a Siamese. Just like with people, I prefer cats that are somewhat weird. It keeps life interesting. I can be bored anytime, no cat required.. Don’t get me wrong, as she gets older she’ll settle down a little bit but she’ll never be the laid back, cat that it sounds like you’re looking for. Their disregard for authority is what makes them interesting. If you’re having coping with her quirks, find her a good home and get yourself a generic type of cat. Calicos are difficult to train. Normally, what you get, is what you get.

  43. Harrison 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.

    1. Edna J Mac Master

      i have a calico cat she is 4 mts. old, and i love her, but she’s real bad. climbing walls, and breaking things i did train her to suck a bottle. water in it of course, she bites and scratches. i had a beautiful cat for 15 yrs. who passed away oct.28th 2019. i cry every day for her. i never had a cat as bad as this one. any ideas? she is ginger, black on top of her little head looks like a part in the middle black of to the sides more white, but ginger markings on her back and side. like i said i love her, and a blck marking on one leg. her tail is black and ginger.

  44. Kelyi

    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.

  45. Nicolas 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 .

  46. Helen

    ‘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.

  47. Angie

    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.

  48. Angie

    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!

    1. William Lockridge

      Sorry to hear about your baby’s health issues. I’ll pray that It resolves itself because, much the same as human Doctors, there’s a lot of quack vet’s out there too.

  49. Tes

    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.

  50. Autumn

    So much false information!

    Firstly, the cat pictured is tortieshell, not calico. Calico is predominantly white, and the ginger and black are in distinct, solid patches. Tortieshells have ginger and black that are much more mixed so the two hair colors look more like they were applied with quick strokes of a painter’s brush.

    Secondly, one in 3000 male calico cats is NOT sterile! I.e., 2,999 out of 3000 male tortieshell and calico cats are sterile. And ALL male tortieshell or calico cats have Kleinfelder syndrome. That is the name for males with a double X chromosome.

    With that much false infornatiin in tje first couple of paragraphs. I didn’t bother to read any more. Do these guys not have editors or fact-checkers?

    1. William Lockridge

      Did you pay for an editor? Oh wait, that’s right, it’s free. Perhaps the best course of action would be to share your knowledge with the group rather than downgrade someone else who is repeating what they’ve heard or read or know to be a fact. In other words, trying to help. Not everyone is as knowledgeable as you but at least they’re trying to help. Have a great new year and thanks for the info.

  51. Brittney

    I have a beautiful 15 year old MALE calico. He is a deep orange, almost red, with white on his face and chest and belly and paws. He has a little black spot (fur) on his hip and he’s just the sweetest cat you can ask for. He has always been an indoor cat, I’ve raised him since I was 3. I’m 18 now. Anyways, we brought him to my grandparents when I was 5 (He was 2, his mother ran away as a baby so we had to feed him). He has been here ever since and he’s the most loyal, loving, affectionate, vocal boy. He’s never had any issues. We have never had to take him to a vet. He’s still active and happy and I hope he lasts a long time!!! ❤️

  52. XXX

    I’ve lost my 12 years old female tortoiseshell… she s an outdoor cat that s already had been living w us in the housing area for 8 years, so there s no chance she ll be lost/missing n she was in a healthy condition… She was super smart, by smart she can open the cage n let herself out. ? i was devastated… n still am..

  53. Joanne Jacobs

    HI, I recently rescued a little calico at work, she was in the parking lot at work. She’s about 5 or 6 months old. I already have two cats. If anyone would be interested, please email me at Joannejacobs54, if I can’t find her a forever home I will keep her, but it seems like a few of you would appreciate her. Her name is Cookie.

  54. danielle

    My cat Cami is purrrfect. we found her under a porch and she hasn’t an all white soft belly. she lays in her back and loves her belly rubbed. she is good natured with kids and so happy. the vet couldn’t get her to stop purring even with a scent they use to get cats to stop. they couldn’t hear her heart because she was too happy.

  55. Kelly Corrado

    I have a male calico. He is a hand full. But I expect no less. My first Calico left me way to early. I spent everything I could but they could not save her. She was eight. It took A little while before I wanted another pet. However a friend brought me another calico.. He is a little terror full of energy and life and of course personality unique to himself. Having lost a female early, is there anything I can do to stay on top and ahead of issues I might have with a male Calico? I see the back and forth about diet but I am also wanting to know what specific to look for in a male calico to give him the best chance at a long life. I don’t want to accept that there is no chance to avoid the health issues.

  56. Buck Hammond

    I have a beautiful Chimera Calico One side of her face is orange and the other side is mostly black. I adopted her from a homeless lady about 2.5 months ago. Then she became very clingy on St. Patrick’s Day. About 2:00 AM on that night, the 18th, she gave birth to the first of 5 healthy babies. They are spectacular and now have been given the names, Mo and Po, Ka and Za, and Ice. Mo is also a Chimera like her mother but she is black and white. Her Chimera line is fine and white ending with white under the nostril on one side and black under the other. Po is black as night. Her eyes are now black but may turn out to be blue. Even the pads of her feet and her claws are black. Ka and Za are fraternal twins, orange and white, or a lighter orange. They are both very symmetrically patterned with ringed tails. That leaves Ice who is all white with bright blue eyes and orange tips to her ears and an orange striped tail. Ice has one more unique feature which is two fine whiter lines down the middle of her back about the width of a finger apart. I will be 75 soon and am so worried about the future of my brood. They will be six weeks old on May 1st. Anyone need a kitten.

  57. Dermot

    I have a Calico, she is the most loving, effectionate cat I have ever had. She can be a little sulky at times but overall no problems with her. She will bring her toys over to me, I get the hint. She loves to cuddle up next to me plus she likes her belly being rubbed while she cuddles up. When she comes in I have to follow her in to the bedroom and spend a good 10 minutes having a fuss. If I don’t she will sit by the door staring at me until we have that bonding time together. It’s a very important thing to her. I have had cats and dogs all my life but never have I had a pet like this, super intelligent and very loving without a bad bone in her. Love her dearly.

    1. Heather O

      That’s so cool!!! Chloe fetches too! We have these Spring toys and she will cry and bring them to me when she wants to play. HAHA – so cool.

  58. Bri

    My dilute calico/ torti, she could be argued to be both even though she does have a little white, shes mostly a lilac color, peach, and s little bit of white with brilliant green eyes. Shes the most affectionate cat ive ever owned. I found her and her kitten outside and took them both in. They are both amazing cats. Sweet, talkative, playful, living, always wants to be held. Her daughter is a black and white tuxedo but looks identical to her mother except for the color. Her eyes are exactly her mothers eyes and the white pattern on her face is identical to her mothers. But i digress, they are both unbelievably sweet and loving and the calico was taught tricks and will give you her paw, will sit, fetch, stay, and lie down. Shes super smart and i couldn’t have asked for a sweeter cat. They both just got spayed yesterday so they are just lying around. If anyone has any tips on how to stop them from licking at their incision, please share. The e collars do not work fof either cat. They freak out and get them off everytime no matter how i put them on or how tight i tie them. Please help with that. Thank you!!!!

  59. Heather O

    HI! I have a beautiful patched tabby calico. She is my princess. I rescued her (as I have all my cats) from the shelter. We lost Jack who we rescued from a snow drift 4 years ago to coyotes. It was horrible. And our other cat was devastated…..cried (literally howled) for a week. SO>>> came Chloe. She is THE sweetest and affectionate little girl ever. She talks up a storm (I think Ollie taught her that) and loves to sit on my lap – which is perfect for me. Chloe is 7 months and happy as can be. She is just like me – loves being warm and sunbathe in the sunshine. My russian blue rescue (Ollie age 2) loves Chloe and they sleep and play and fight and lick each other constantly. He loved Jack so it wasn’t the best the first 2 weeks – but, it’s been 3 months and they are “brother and sister” now. I’m fortunate that Chloe has a sweet disposition. I let her know who’s boss (me…lol) and Ollie puts her in her place. Her tail is longer than she is and absolutely gorgeous. When she gets older – she might kick Ollie’s butt. LOL Although he is a big cat….but shorter tail. We shall see. Thanks for letting me share and thanks for the great info!

  60. Martin

    We have just been blessed with a caluco she is very skittish at this time probably due to her young age (6weeks old) but very playful with her mom and brother

  61. Syd

    I adopted a dilute calico kitten from a local shelter about 8 years ago. I was very young and knew close to nothing about cat breeds, but she was the sweetest girl I’ve ever met. She is very docile and calm, but gets spooky VERY easily.
    Cici is my big chunky baby!! She has long fur that I brush daily before giving her food. To make sure I don’t forget, she sits by her spot and YELLS until I come! Lol
    She RARELY scratches or bites people and usually only on accident because she likes making biscuits on you when in bed. <3
    She has always lived at my parents house, but I am planning on moving soon with other animals present (1 cat and 1 small dog). I am worried especially because she had a traumatic experience with a dog within the past year.

  62. irene

    i am in australia i have a calico cat i got her from a vet at cootamundra she is so gently followes me every were so loving and smart she loves to be warm she has a electric blanket loves it and food loves her food i call her missy and she knows her name if i call her she comes running i have a food warmer and now she thinks it belongs to her she is a lovley cat so pretty a very quite purr and does not meow much a quite cat caleco cat missy mum loves you

  63. Monique A Barela

    We have not one but 5 calico cats here in our home. Our original cat geico is a calico and then she gave birth to 2 calico kitten this last liter. Our solid white cat name snow which was from geicos first liter also just gave birth to 2 calico kittens.

  64. Shelby

    So I have an all black and white cat with an orange mouth. Plus an peachy and white Tabby with grey and peach on the hind legs and tail are either of the considered calicos?

    1. small mallory photoMallory Crusta

      Hey Shelby, great question! While calico cats usually have large patches of orange, black, and white, any cat with all three colors falls into the category of “tricolor” and it sounds like both of your kitties fall into that larger category. Both of your cats have special genetic characteristics unique to calico and tortoiseshells, meaning that they have the genes for both orange fur and non-orange fur. Because they have distinct patches of black, white, and orange, your black-and-white kitty is a calico without the distinctive large patches of color. As for your tabby, it sounds like you have a dilute calico on your hands! Some people call calico tabbies calibies or patterned calicos.

  65. Julianna

    I just adopted a calico. Her name is Ruby Rose (yes, after the actress who played Batwoman on the CW channel). I have never had a calico., but reading about them I am getting quick education. Ruby Rose is 6 months old and hates to be picked up and held. If she wants to be petted, she will jump on my lap, purr real loud and rub her face into my hand. She eats Purina kitten food and is doing fine on it. I have had cats before and they are wet food……..poop smelled a lot worse. The dry food doesn’t have that effect. She is a night owl (or a bat…. ?) She will run around the house, come back to the family room and bat around her toys. She is used to my granddaughters and I have cautioned them to be gentle and do not pick her up. My husband and I are both retired so we have time to devote to her. She was spayed, had all her shots and is chipped. The humane society where we adopted her told us that all their adopted cats must be “indoor” only. Not a problem. She has a calming collar on and her regular collar is black with a red rose. She has a scratching toy and a scratching pole. She will sleep with us, but gets bored and wanders around the house or she sits guard at the top of the stairs if she is so inclined at night. So much to learn about this type of cat.

  66. Linda Gregg

    I have a beautiful calico, someone abandoned her and never reported it. So the lady that I got her from told me the family abandoned her, and moved. It’s taken sometime for our male cat to get used to having her around. They have their brawls every now and then, usually she wins. She has a strange marking on her face, a mustache of black coloring above her nose. But she is black, orange and white. She has become very attached to me. She does have a cattitude, believe me. She’s okay with my husband but sticks to me like glue. As far as my daughter goes she’s ok with her too. Not so much with guys though. At night she crawls up on my side and sleeps there till I move. She is my baby girl and she knows it.

  67. Lynn

    We have one of those rare male calicos! We just adopted Jorge from my mom, who had to surrender her cats due to moving into an assisted living, and she really can’t take care of them anymore. Anyway, he is so precious and has always been such a stinker! As a younger cat, he had pica, and had to have several visits to an emergency vet to remove swallowed items. He swallowed a length of gift wrap ribbon once, and it made him very ill until it was surgically removed! Now, he’s older, and has chronic respiratory issues. I know that male calico cats commonly have health issues, but is it common to develop a COPD-type respiratory disease? He’s 13 now, and we know he probably has only a few months left, at best. We’ve always loved him, and we want to make whatever time he has left as comfortable and happy and loving as possible. His life partner is Lucy, a tiny peach-point Siamese mix. They always snuggle together and used to groom each other. Lucy will likely outlive Jorge by quite a bit because of his health issues. I worry about her when he’s gone. Even when Jorge is in another room, she meows for him! Anyway, I just wanted you to know the story about one very special male calico.

  68. Julie

    I have two Calico rescue kittens in Dubai one is 5months and one 6weeks younger found in a similar area but a couple of months apart. They are very different nature Brunch (named after I collected her from foster between 12-2pm on a Friday ) is very dominant and wasn’t too happy with the new addition a month after I found her. But baby Kitten Rosie has won her over she has the most gentle nature and was in foster with 5 adult cats she now can’t believe her luck that she has another kitten with energy to play with. Rosie adores Brunch and follows her everywhere so I guess Brunch just gave in, they have been together with me for 4 weeks. Lots of fun lots of cuddles and they look fabulous strutting around together . Both eat dry kitten food also chicken and Tuna it one is a grazer the other eats everything. One sleep is high in their cat tree one sleeps at the bottom . brunch sleeps near me with a leg on my hand arm or leg to make sure I don’t move she’s very possessive of me. Rosie literally tries to sleep under me! Chalk and Cheese so very lucky to have them both and it wasn’t planned they just happened to appear in my life at the right time.

  69. Teresa Weaver

    I have a long haired calico that was dumped on our property decades ago. We took her to the vet because we thought she had a bot fly in her head. The vet called me and told me she just had a bad cost on her head. The vet then told me that the staff had told her that this cat is 21 years old. I told her she had a chip and she said yes, according to the chip that is where the hot her age. I told her we have had her for 17 years so she is probably that old. She is still going strong. She is going blind and deaf but we make sure she is safe and HAPPY. She loved our 2 rescued chocolate labs. She used to follow my husband when he would walk the puppies. She would also pop them on their tails if they barked too much. She is awesome!

  70. Catharine Volker

    I am from South Africa and I have 2 calicos and l tabby and they all get along famously . . I feed them Royal Canin Home Life Indoor cat and they have no urinary tract problems.

  71. Katherine Dulaney

    I have had a calico cat for five years. Her name is kitty kitty meow meow – Kitty for short. Her nickname is monster (just because she’s mischievous) Lol. I’ve had many cats in my life but never a calico. I know they are not a specific breed, but she has the most unique, playful, infectious personality that I’ve ever known in a cat. she is very smart and she rules the household. Her big sister is a female German Shepherd named Sophie. Kitty hated Sophie when she first came, they are now best friends and have huge games of chase, tag and hide and seek in the house. they sound like a herd of elephants when they are going at it. Kitty loves to egg her sister on, and will peek around the corner until she catches her eye and then tear down the hall so Sophie will chase her. They are both such a joy. If I take a nap, kitty lays on my back and Sophie lays next to us, and if I wake up and pet kitty, I have to pet Sophie because she gets jealous. I am so impressed with calico cats, Kitty is my little BFF. Again, I know they say they are not a separate breed, but there is something very unique and special about calico cats, I don’t care what the experts say!

  72. Amanda Meyer

    I read through most (not all) of the comments and we do seem to have the rare mysterious male calico. He is a pretty large solid cat and he is very independent and does not like affection or touch much unless he wants something. He has atypical coloring as is described in this article with mostly white and black with only a smudging of brown here and there. He is beautiful!

    He has given us some behavior issues in the past, but seems better now that he is around 5 years old. A few bowel issues as a younger cat, but nothing major recently. There were times when he was younger than I wanted to get rid of him, but I wouldn’t trade him for the world now!

  73. Dianne May

    My calico baby is a rescue cat. We got Patches 2 years ago, when she was a kitten. She has learned so much, like saying “mama”, “I love you” and “no”. She plays catch with my husband and sleeps with us, at night. She is spoiled and knows how to get her way (most of the time!). But we did get her to stop climbing into the Christmas tree! Yay!
    Thank you for the informative article. It answered some questions I had.

  74. Amanda Stephens

    My mom has a calico cat that I found alone in a parking lot she was so tiny maybe two weeks old barely had her eyes open and learning to walk. She was bottle fed she is mean she randomly attacks people she don’t let us pet her we do get lucky from time to time and she outta nowhere become very loveable only for a shot time (five minutes at the most) then will suddenly go from purring and being sweet to attack hissing and mean. I have a small dog same age as her and they are best friends my mom got a new kitten and she hates him She is now almost a year old and is pregnant we hope she becomes less aggressive having kittens. She is a very smart cat and so beautiful it’s sucks that she has such an attitude.

  75. Kimberly Riley

    My all grey long haired cat just delivered 5 kittens. 2 are calicos and the other 3 are diluted calicos. Still too soon to be sure if they’re all girls or if we have a male in the litter.

  76. Leslie Jensen

    We have a 13 year old Dilute Calico which is the best cat we have ever had. She is 13 years old and never claws us or anything & has the sweetest personality. She gets along with everyone. She is our only pet. The only problem we have she does get stressed from time to time & she has allergies. We feed her only Iams urinary dry cat food only.

  77. tammy

    hi i have a 5 yr old calico who is very mean with people in general she hisses and bits almost everyone that comes around . she also will bit me and leave me with scars from either biting or clawing me just for trying to hold her or brush her what can i do to help with this . ive tried treats but she dont seem to want to do anything for them she just wants them ive never hit her or punished her in any way for her bad behavior but it has to stop because im getting to the point of wanting to get rid of her for this . she is fixed but not declawed as i was told it shortens there life when declawed so i really dont want to do that . the vet says just to ignore her which i have done but dont seem to have any affect what so ever with her . i also tried to find a treat she really likes but again she dont care about treats for anything. so im at a loss on how to get her to be nicer to me and any help would be greatly apparated .

  78. Terri

    My calico is a rescue who was born outside. She’s so skiddish and fearful. She jumps at any little sound and runs whenever I try to touch her. She’s a little more than a yr now and still runs. She has jumped up on the couch beside me a couple times but doesn’t stay. Her eyes seem a bit slanted. I often wonder if she has a delay. But I love her and I’ll let her come to me when she’s ready.

  79. Ian

    Just a heads up we have just lost our 19 yr old Calico girl named scramble hence her colours, just like the other girls we had, we never gave them tap water, what with chlorine, sodium Fluoride in it, I know they like to drink fresh running water when available, but we always gave them bottled water.

  80. Lois Ritter

    I have an 8 year old calico cat. She is very mellow, doesn’t like to play. Not much interests her. She follows me where ever I go. She doesn’t like to be held and will only once in awhile will sleep in my lap. She would rather sit by me and be petted. She doesn’t meow and if she does you can’t hear her. Even though she is the way she is we have a special bond. She is a mommy’s girl. I am a very mellow person so we get along just fine. I have been told she could have British short-haired in her witch is deeply rooted in Scottish fold so along of her behaviors would make sense. She is the love of my life!

  81. Lois Ritter

    I have an 8 year old calico cat. She is very mellow, doesn’t like to play. Not much interests her. She follows me where ever I go. She doesn’t like to be held and will only once in awhile will sleep in my lap. She would rather sit by me and be petted. She doesn’t meow and if she does you can’t hear her. Even though she is the way she is we have a special bond. She is a mommy’s girl. I am a very mellow person so we get along just fine. I have been told she could have British short-haired in her witch is deeply rooted in Scottish fold so alot of her behaviors would make sense. She is the love of my life!

  82. Teguh Budiawan

    hi, I just found an adult male calico cat. the cat came to my house in a state of injury. his leg was seriously injured, sore with pus. I smeared the wound with olive oil. I don’t have the budget to go to the vet. I hope this magical cat gets well soon.

    Sorry, my English is bad. I’m from Indonesia

  83. Susan Haley

    We adopted a 10 year old Calico cat named Lucy. She is very laid back and makes herself at home where ever she goes. She immediately loved my kids and was with them 24/7 when we first brought her home. She loved my dogs (after she put them in their place). She loves to travel and visit other homes and fits right in. I have never had such a mild mannered cat in my life. She is now 13 years old and loves to be held and loves to sprawl on our back patio in the sun. We are lucky to have such a great cat.

    1. Leigh Ann Foster

      ? I have a healthy beautiful female calico. I’m freaking hear . What is the best thing for her to eat . She doesn’t like not can but the small Sheba variety. She Not interested. .still freaking.

  84. James William Higgins

    When naming a cat and you want it done right away..
    Pick your cat up and whisper the cats name in it’s ear and then give it a kiss on the forehead after doing that 3 times set it down and take 5-7 steps back crouch down and call it by it’s new name… Every part of what I just said gets the cat to know it’s name really well.

  85. Norma Carter

    I have a Callie she’s the one with light colors, she has bright green eyes. Her name is Ricky Lynn and boy can she have a ride she normally sleeps on my stomach don’t know why there, but if I make her mad she will go out of her way to avoid me and I never know what I did. She hardly meows but when she does it’s loud so I’m guessing she needs a cuddle. Ricky can jump from the back of the couch to the cabinet near the kitchen without missing. The one I had before her was Lily she crossed the rainbow bridge, she had so much rude that when she walked she wiggles her butt. I love them both so much.

  86. Scott Francis Weber

    Just found out today that a calico I adopted back in 2017 was actually born on November 27th 2002. That makes her 21 years 4 months old!!! She has never been sick or left my house since I’ve had her.

  87. Michael

    I have a Calico cat Named Ms. Kitty and her brother Tommy. They are both 17 years old and still actually in good health. Ms. Kitty is a loner but she does follow me around. She was an outside cat until this year winter 2023-2024 now she is an inside cat. I am hoping her and her brother Tommy live to be 20.