Tortoiseshell Cats: Personality, Lifespan and Pictures

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Cats are acknowledged for having reputable characters, which can vary from playful and devoted to unfriendly and independent.

There are many varieties of cat breeds and lots of different colors. One coloring is the tortoiseshell, and felines with this kind of fur are recognized as Tortoiseshell cats.

What Is a Tortoiseshell Cat?

The term “Tortoiseshell” was derived from the mishmash of different fur colors which resemble a tortoise’s shell. It is important to note that Tortoiseshell cats aren’t recognized as a type of breed; the name merely denotes the color of the feline’s coat.

Also Read: Tortoiseshell Vs Calico Cats: What’s The Difference Between Them?

Are Tortoiseshell Cats Rare?

Tortoiseshell cats, characterized by a distinctive mix of colors in their coat, are not rare overall, but the pattern is more commonly found in females. This is due to the genetic association with the X chromosome.

Male tortoiseshell cats are relatively rare and typically have an extra X chromosome (XXY), a condition known as Klinefelter syndrome.

How Long Do Tortoiseshell Cats Live?

The lifespan of tortoiseshell cats can vary based on their living conditions and whether they are spayed or neutered. Indoor tortoiseshell cats, protected from outdoor risks, typically live 12 to 20 years or more. On the other hand, outdoor tortoiseshell cats face more hazards, leading to shorter lifespans, generally ranging from 5 to 10 years. Spaying or neutering contributes to overall health, and altered tortoiseshell cats often enjoy longer and healthier lives compared to their unaltered counterparts.

Tortoiseshell Cat Characteristics

Tortoiseshell Cat

Tortoiseshell Cats are known to be extremely intelligent

It is known that no two Tortoiseshell cats exhibit the exact similar personalities, or “tortitude”. After verifying with hundreds of “tortie” (short for tortoiseshell) cat humans, it can be concluded that this type of feline actually has a wide array of personality characteristics;

  • Curious– Virginia greets her owners by walking over to them, staring at them, and then burrowing her nails into the owner’s legs to use them as a scratching post.
  • Compassionate– Amber is known as the “anti-tortie” – she is calm, a little headstrong, gentle, and quite shy.
  • Cheerful– Buckley’s tortitude is manifested in her excitement. She loves everybody and everything.
  • Clever– Allegra is highly sensitive to her surroundings and quick to respond to anything that she sees as a threat.

Those among us who like torties accept their exceptional personalities. It is essential to know that every kitten, irrespective of its coat coloring, is an individual.

Not every cat will show the characteristics attributed to these attractively colored felines, but the majority seem to fulfill their reputation. As far as we’re concerned, tortitude is real.


Tortoiseshell cats

Tortoiseshell cats have particolored coats with patches of various shades of yellow, orange, red and black

What distinguishes a tortie from a torbie (tabby tortoiseshell) cat is that the true tortie has the color black as its primary coloring.

We know, it can get awfully confusing sometimes, and the fact that torbies are used to be called reverse torties makes it even more confusing.

If a cat has any white in their coloring, even if they have a mixture of colors all over (black, brown, tan, red, amber, chocolate, cinnamon, etc.) they are referred to as a Calico cat.

Calico cats will often have a lot of colors in their fur, especially on their backs or on their top side, and the white streak will often be on the belly. So if you see a tortie with a white belly, it’s most probably a Calico.

Tama, the feline from the Japanese Kishi train station, is a well-known Calico. She gained her fame by being appointed to a station master position in 2007, and was rewarded with cat food.

Her presence at the station boosted the station’s popularity, which significantly contributed to the locals. She happened to be a celebrated and much-beloved part of the station, until her death in 2015.

Personality and Temperament

Tortoiseshell cat playing

Tortoiseshell cats have varied personalities just like cats with other coat types and patterns.

Many people believe that there are steady guidelines to what a cat’s personality and behavior will be like, but that is not necessarily always the case. Lots of myths exist, attributing certain characteristics to certain breeds of cats.

Certain types of cats do have reputations for being a certain way personality-wise, but individual character will vary from cat to cat.

Tortoiseshell cats are a whole lot like people in a lot of ways. There are broad strokes of personalities, but every individual will be unique. That’s probably why we bond so well with our cats, they remind us of ourselves in some ways.

tortoiseshell cat lifespan

Photo by Andy Holmes on Unsplash: The average lifespan of a tortoiseshell cat is 10-15 years

In general, Tortoiseshell cats are thought to be very opinionated creatures, and somewhat aloof, going about their lives as if they were above everything.

They tend to be strong-willed cats, unpredictable, and independent. Real “cat’s cats”, if you will. But, as mentioned above, this is just a broad guideline and will not always hold completely true. All cats will have their own inherent traits.

These type of cats are located all around the world. Consequently, many humans own Tortoiseshell cats or know someone who does.

However, there are several very thrilling facts about those cats that most people are not aware of. The uniqueness of these cats extends a long way beyond their shade.

Many humans simply do not realize how particular and special a Tortoiseshell cat can be.

Here Are Some Facts You Probably Didn’t Know About Tortoiseshell Cats:

  1. There are various types of Tortoiseshell cat coats: While the colorings of Tortoiseshell cats are usually described as a combination of black and red, color combinations may vary widely.
  2. Their coats can have diverse patterns: Not only do the colorings of the Tortoiseshell cats differ between each single individual, but an array of shades can exist as well. Overall, there are two main patterns: patched and brindled.
  3. Many cat breeds can bear Tortoiseshell cat type characteristics: As stated earlier, Tortoiseshell is not a specific breed of cats. It only refers to an outstandingly-colored coat. Therefore, Tortoiseshell felines can be either short or long-haired.
  4. Many cultures around the world feature Tortoiseshell cats in their folklore: As these lovely cats are found in many places around the globe, they are frequently reminded in folklore.
  5. They are thought to be a sign of good luck/ fortune: Even today, these felines are prominent figures for those who are superstitious. Many individuals consider Tortoiseshell kittens to bring good fortune.
  6. These cats are denoted by various names: The Tortoiseshell Kitten has also been offered several nicknames, depending on their particular color and location.
  7. They are super energetic felines: These felines are not only known for their coloring; they are also identified as exceptionally energetic cats.
  8. “Tortitude”: Apart from their highly energetic characteristics, many people claim that these kittens are much tougher than other cats.
  9. They are almost entirely females: Only 1 in every 3000 Tortoiseshell felines is male. The reason for this astounding dominance of female Tortoiseshell cats is genetic. The phenomenon which causes cats to be a tortie in the first place manifests itself almost exclusively in female cats.

Have a Tortoiseshell cat at home? Tell us all about what makes her so special in a comment below!

Frequently Asked Questions

Are all tortoiseshell cats female?

Much like calico cats, tortoiseshells are for the most part female. Male tortoiseshells are extremely rare.

Are tortoiseshell cats hypoallergenic?

Tortoiseshell Cats don't possess any special coat qualities that set them apart from others, but they do produce less Fel d1.

How much is a female tortoiseshell cat worth?

There no need to buy a tortoiseshell cat. You can adopt one at your local pet shelter or rescue group.

Are tortoiseshell cats mean?

They're really not, tortoiseshell cats are extremely kind, friendly and affectionate

Can tortoiseshell cats be male?

Only 1 in every 3000 Tortoiseshell felines is male. The reason for this astounding dominance of female Tortoiseshell cats is genetic

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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.

117 thoughts on “Tortoiseshell Cats: Personality, Lifespan and Pictures”

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  1. Pet Brain

    Hi had a tortoiseshell cat in the past and he was a combination of black and red. And I can confirm that he was a very energetic cat!! I miss him so much!

    1. Help me

      There is this homeless abandoned cat that I take care of, but is mixed fur that has about almost equal quantity of colors. She is fully colored with no white, what type of tortie is she?

      <3 cat lover

    2. Johanna

      I bet you do sorry for your loss!
      Mine is 18 going on 19yrs old.
      Just so you know the life span depends on diet and lifestyle. The author is wrong to say 10-15 years life span. My cat is 18 years of age and still going strong. Looks 12! But can see some grey hairs on her front. She’s robust healthy gets vet check-ups twice a year, eats well — Royal Canin fry food for Aging Cats & a variety of Applaws, Purina, Fancy Feast wet food every morning & evening. Dry food for grazing on throughout the day & night. Vets have said she’s in amazing condition. I expect her to live into her 20’s. She travels with me too. I’m kind of a at whisper & I keep her calm in all situations and ease her into new surroundings new experiences gently making it seem like a very natural experience. I never leave home without her if traveling away even staying elsewhere for a day & night.

      1. willow

        the author actually says indoor torties can live “12 to 20 years or more” … also the cat foods listed, from a holistic perspective, are full of incredibly unhealthy ingredients!

    3. leah

      Cats like Elsa: whenever I go outside she can rub her head and fur
      on me be case she loves me for me and I love her just for her

    4. Romana Strasheim

      I have five cats. All ‘rescues ‘ except one.
      My calico cat named Tigler is definitely the most intelligent!
      She ‘feels’ my mood …
      When I am upset she ‘talks’ to me. Hovers about, staying close.
      Also does she sees me off when I leave house, welcomes me back …

    5. Eva

      Yes!! My tortie doja cat is very energetic! but she is the most loving and clingy cat ever. sometimes instead of meowing she lets out little chirps almost, and she is very vocal! Even if she is mad she doesn’t swat at you, hiss, or nip at you or anything, she just sits there with a little attitude ☺️

    1. Johanna

      Just so you know the life span depends on diet and lifestyle. The author is wrong to say 10-15 years life span. My cat is 18 years of age and still going strong. She’s robust healthy gets vet check-ups twice a year, eats well — Royal Canin fry food for Aging Cats & a variety of Applaws, Purina, Fancy Feast wet food every morning & evening. Dry food for grazing on throughout the day & night. Vets have said she’s in amazing condition. I expect her to live into her 20’s. She travels with me too. I’m kind of a at whisper & I keep her calm in all situations and ease her into new surroundings new experiences gently making it seem like a very natural experience. I never leave home without her if traveling away even staying elsewhere for a day & night.

  2. Emma

    My precious Tortie crossed the rainbow bridge on February 28 almost 4 weeks ago. I miss my baby girl, she was almost 13 yrs old. I have not felt a lump in my throat for years and now I can’t get rid of the lump in my throat and pain in my heart. I love you Shaak.

    1. xjennyx

      Your in my thoughts and prayers! Keep in mind, she is waiting for you at The Rainbow Bridge, you’ll see her again. Keep your heart and home open to another kitten or cat that needs a home, she’ll understand and be thankful you gave a home to a cat in need.

      1. Malcolm cole

        I have a beautiful tortie.. Named “CALI” she is now preggers.. She’s a very protective cat and very feisty, yet so very lovable…
        Wish i could send a pic of her..

    2. Kay Ohare

      So sorry to hear of you loss. We just adopted a stray tortie female that is young and was dropped off at a friends home pregnant and then a few months again she got pregnant so this lady asked someone to take her and get her fixed and she offered $ to do that so we are now her caretakers. She will go to get shots and get fixed in December. How far are you located? We are elderly and if we find Gracie a good home we would consider giving her a good home because we are elderly.

    1. Denisia Goings

      I have a tortie & she is very energetic (she gets these Burt’s of energy where she runs up & down the hall like a crazy person). She is also very vocal & seems to think she is a human because she wants our human food all the time. She’s a cuddle bug & durning the day she is almost always on my lap.

      1. Terry Bell

        Mine is 17 1/2 years old, very energetic and still runs around the house. I love it! She’s so sweet. Definitely a lap cat and loves her toys. She too is very vocal. I thank God regularly that I still have her.

        1. Johanna

          Life span isn’t 10-15 yrs. My cat is 18 going on 19. Torties can live into their 20’s. All depends on lifestyle, diet and regular vet check-ups I guess! I feed her Royal Canin for Aging Cats 12+ and good quality wet food & other healthy additions such as omega oils and dental care treats. She looks amazing, robust, has glossy fur, looks far younger than her years. I hope she lives to at least 30 cats have been known to live into their 30’s! Wow! Top quality diet & good care sure helps!

        2. MAVIS FOX

          Jubilee (dark tortoise shell) is now 20 yes old. She is affectionate but only when she wants to be and is also very vocal. Has never had a big interest in cat toys apart from a mouse and a fish. Sometimes she drives me crazy but I wouldn’t be without her.

          1. Dorothy McRo

            how alike your Jubilee and my “Puss”are in character. Puss will be 21 in December ’22 and is quite frisky still. My arm chair has been taken over by her, with her looking over my shoulder when she figures its time to take over my comfortable seat. she has a little white on 2 paws, is now on early renal food applicable to her condition. One wouldn’t think there was anything wrong with her, Puss is in charge and I’m surprised she doesn’t charge me rent to live in HER home.

  3. Ashley Bessesen

    Hello, we just adopted a Tortoiseshell cat on Sunday April 8th from the local Human Society. 2 weeks ago we adopted an American Bulldog. The AB has settled great. We are wondering when the cat will. She still likes to hide everywhere. Isnt social at all. Does anyone else have a dog along with this type of cat?

    1. Suzette

      Please, give her time…she is scared, as you would be if all of a sudden your in a strange place with folks you don’t know;…therefore she will hide awhile until she discovers she is safe.

      Many years ago when I was younger I adopted my first Cat who was a beautiful long-haired Tortoisehell kitten. She had so few other visible colors in her dark brunette hair that she looked almost black. This was my first kitten ever owned. After taking her home I simply placed a bowl of food on floor for her presuming she’d eat, but instead she refused to eat and only laid in one spot in the room. I had a small 2/room apartment and lived alone, so at least her environment was not chaotic. But, every day when I came home from work the food bowl remained completely untouched and fresh food offered during the evening also refused.
      Regardless, I bought and served many varieties of canned cat food and even a few dry foods, still she refused to eat.
      Also drank no water.

      She mostly laid in one spot and continued to starve herself.
      She was stoic, never hissed nor had any expression to give me a hint as to why she’s refusing food.

      Finally on the 4th day of her voluntary starvation and my great pity for her I picked her up and laid her in my lap for a long siesta with me, presuming this neurotic cat was starving into death.
      However, I had not previously sought to actually hold the Cat nor be involved because I had a very busy work schedule.
      And, in my youthful ignorance I just figured that as a Cat she needed no true communication because at that time like many humans I thought Cats being loners just did not need nor want the attention a dog requires.

      Anyway, presuming this kitten had probably starved herself after 4/days of not eating, I laid her in my lap as I rested after a long day at the job. After several hours she crawled onto my chest and laid there another hour or more as I slept.

      Later, I got up and took some raw beef liver out of the fridge that I’d bought for her hoping the fresh “kill” smell of raw flesh would entice her to eat, while also giving her strong nutrients especially to make up for all her starvation.

      WOW! She jumped on my legs screaming for the Liver and climbed up my legs onto my buttocks, dug her nails in screaming for the Liver.

      Yeah! I quickly got her off because those nails hurt, she gobbled up the raw beef liver. And from that day forward she began eating and kept eating.

      So I discovered the Kitten had been in a state of traumatic fear: when I first saw the kitten in the shelter she was curled up at the back of the cage while another larger kitten was bullying her and hitting her. So I’d actually brought a traumatized kitten into my apartment wherein her anxiety also increased because now she was in a strange place (at least she knew the residence of the cage) and with a strange human. Also, I had not sought any personal communication with her; SO HER FEAR FOR HER SAFETY CONTINUED TO ACCELERATE, UNTIL I DID THE DEEP COMMUNICATION WITH HER OF LAYING HER ON MY LAP AND ALLOWED HER TO LAY ON MY CHEST WHILE I SLEPT IN THIS COMPLETE UNPROTECTED POSITION OF MYSELF, AND THEREBY SHE THENCE KNEW SHE WAS SAFE, SHE COULD TRUST ME.

      1. Andy

        We adopted a tortoiseshell cat from the rescue center 18 months ago. She was dreadfully timid, hid most of the time. Scratched, hissed and clawed us. No way could we pick her up (she would turn to liquid and attack). So much so that the vet said there was little chance of this being much of a domestic cat (she was a stray who had lived on the city streets before being rescued). After 6 months she would let us stroke her and would play. After 9 months she was a full on house cat, coming to sit on our laps, roll over to have her tummy rubbed, and would follow us around the house. A few months ago we moved house and she was a bit nervous. The vet gave us some cat-pheromone spray and air ‘fresheners’. That helped a lot. After a few weeks she was fully settled in and is the most sociable creature you could imagine.
        Please give your newcomer time. Time to earn her trust. Give her lots and lots of love. It will pay off I promise.

      2. K-Lee

        Thank you for saving a shelter cat, but…
        I won’t get into everything, but first and foremost you are lucky that kitten even survived. At the first sign of not eating, she should have been brought to a vet, kittens seldomly survive without food and water for 4 days. And I’m not sure why you saved a cat from a shelter if you had such a busy schedule that you didn’t have the time, as well as knowing nothing about cats.
        I’m not in the habit of publicly admonishing people, but I hope anyone reading can learn from your mistakes. Yes, your kitten survived, but at what cost? System failures begin immediately once a cat, especially a kitten, goes off food and water. You knew it had been traumatized, yet offered no hide box or area for it to feel safe, never took the time to socialize the poor thing or show it any kindness-other than removing it from certain abuse at the shelter, you simply placed it in your home and left it to continue to be afraid and alone.
        This shelter you took her from obviously fails in its job vetting potential forever homes, because they should have been asking if you’ve ever had a cat or knew how to care for one.
        There is so much information readily available now, it is shameful to have such ignorance about the care of these animals.
        You say you were younger, but not so young that you were under 15, I gather. You worked full time and had an apartment, far from being able to claim this as a folly of youth.
        I hope your poor traumatized cat did well and lived a long, happy life. As I mentioned, you were most fortunate she even survived.

    2. Mary

      I have 2 dogs and just got a torty about a month ago..tookm@ week or two but she is berry very friendly and lays beside the dogs all the time.

    3. Tammy Thomas

      Just curious if your tortie ever settled in. I’ve had my tortie since she was 10 weeks old, she’s now 8 yrs old. She has never come out of that ‘aloofness’. Most visitors don’t even know we have her because she doesn’t come out of hiding. She is not social at all, not even with my husband and I or our little Havanese dog. She won’t let us pick her up. She won’t sit on our laps. All she will do is walk near our chairs close enough to pat her back and head and will cry incessantly until we do. I sooo wish she wasn’t like this. She is so beautiful but sooo not much of a family pet. I refer to her as our resident snob.

    4. C.C.

      When we adopted our tortie from Animal Humane, we were required to sign a contract that she would be the only pet. In the first few months, she would often hide and never made a peep. Though she eventually became vocal, she still does not like other animals. we tested the limits with a roommate who had another cat and a small friendly dog. Our tortie did not fare well. She started losing her hair and was nervous all the time, even aggressive/protective. As soon as the other animals were gone, she calmed down and the hair grew back. My cousin had a tortie that grew up with a lab. She tolerated the dog but they were never friends. As I’ve gotten to know others of this type, they do appear to prefer being the only pet as they are very protective and territorial, yet not overtly affectionate. Ours will sit in our lap now but still hates to be picked up or cuddled.

    5. Ed co

      I have two small dogs and my cat plays with them all the time. It took a few days but she did well. Loves going outside for walks.

    6. Debora Cato

      I had a torti, she was living outside, dont think i could call her feral cause ifed hed since birth and made her a safe bed from the ouside elements, i bought a live trap and brought her home, it took about a month for her to calm down, she became the nicest and sweetest of all my 4 cats, she was very friendly with everyone ecspecially my ex husband

    7. Amy

      Hi there, I have a 13 y/o Tortie, Rosie. I adopted her when she was a baby, 4 months after I adopted my puppy, Daisy. They are both the same age so now, as Seniors, they are more accepting of each other’s presence. In the beginning, pups would torment and kitty would hide. It’s somewhat like that now but more like a game. Rosie loves her solitude as queen of my bedroom and hides out alot, making a surprise appearance every now and then. She is vocal and very sweet when she comes out of hiding. She is not a cuddler though. Doesn’t like to be handled except on her own regal terms, lol

    8. K-Lee

      Definitely give her time, but you need to work with her every day. It is rare that you can simply dump a cat into a new environment, add a new dog into the mix, and have the cat immediately adjust. Socialization is key. Go where she hides and offer pets and treats, talk to her gently and pick her up and hold her or put her on your lap often. Use brushing as a way of connecting as well. You can get teaser toys, even a laser pointer, to draw her out and get her stimulated. Even small amounts of catnip can help.
      I’ve been rescuing cats for over 30 years and no two ever socialize at the same level, but if you want your new kitty to be well adjusted, you do need to put forth the time and effort…the reward is immeasurable.
      Best of luck.

  4. Laura

    “kittens with this kind of fur are recognized as Tortoiseshell tomcats”

    FYI, tomcats are boy cats. As you say, torties are virtually always girls.

    It’s because the genes for fur color are located on the X chromosome. Females get two X chromosomes, males only one, so males get only one fur color plus white. The exceptions are XXY, Klinefelter’s syndrome (this can happen to humans too) and chimeras, in which two cat embryos merged very early to make one kitten.

  5. Gabby

    Hey idk if this has to do with being a stray/ feral cat but Chester(my cat) will refuse to let me hold him or pick him up and chooses to still let us pet it and rub under his chin… how can I gain his trust so I can pick him Up give him a bath and maybe take him to the vet (he refuses to be in a cage or anything that isn’t our porch)

    1. C.C.

      We’ve had ours 10 yrs and she still hates being picked up or cuddled. I know she trusts us implicitly as she bares her tummy and lets us rub her belly or sleeps long periods in our laps. We just have to adjust our expectations of affection to match hers!

  6. Rachel

    Yes!.. at her age of 24years you are Miraculously blessed to still have her and sharing your lives together.
    That sharing I miss so very much with the absence of my deceased Cat, as, well, as missing the Cat herself.

    It is so important to be able to share life with someone you love; it’s worth more than gold.

  7. gail

    on september 24 2016 there was a tortishell cat outside my appartment building. i tried to find her owners, apperently they abandoned her because she had a litter of kittens. my friend and i were able to bring the kittens to the humane society. i call her princess. she has a moody personality. sometimes she is chatty othertimes quiet. i love her to bits. i rescued her and she rescued me,

  8. Suzie

    I have a lovely Tortie we adopted from the animal shelter 16 and a half years ago. She was the scrawniest and funniest looking kitten in cage #1. She mewed and purred so we took her home and have loved ber ever since. What good luck Tortie is for us.

  9. Marilyn

    I have a male tortoise shell, and was surprised how rare he is! One in 3000! I feel lucky to have him! Anyway,
    I have a question that I’m throwing out for anyone to answer or give an opinion on. Like all calico males, he is sterile. The vet, however, is still suggesting that I have him neutered. She said, depending on his hormone levels, he could still display typical male cat behaviors…such as spraying, etc. He is almost two years old, and I have witnessed none of these behaviors so far. Any opinions as to whether I should neuter him anyway?

  10. Nicole

    We just rescued a stray tortoise shell kitten in our area. At the moment she is very timid and looks at me as I speak to her. Our neighbours are trying to trap the rest of the strays so they have shelter for winter months ahead. We already have four cats, three of them are 10 years and over but the fourth one is only 2 years old and she is a calico. We also found out that the mother of this kitten was our calico’s sister, so this ought to be interesting as our calico looked at the kitten and growled. I’m not worried as my cats do adapt to other cats. As for the kitten, she seems to want to wonder and explore, for some reason I suspect she might go in hiding in the house. So I think perhaps it is safer if I leave her in the cat carrier over night.

  11. Mary Beth ColemanMary

    I adopted my cat from the shelter and had never seen or heard of a tortoise shell cat. I tried to wash the pink off her fur until I read about Torties . Her official name is Ugly Daisy but now I call her Daisy. She recently learned to touch my arm and kiss me for some “candy”.

  12. crystal

    we just rescued a tiny bay tortie from the neighbors old dilapidated garage The tenants had moved out.. garage has big holes in roof broken windows full of garbage. It is freezing rain/snow windy very cold / The day after Thanksgiving. we went out on our side porch for a smoke and heard loud mew mew crying coming from neighbors garage..We coaxed out this tiny ball of fluff with a bowl of milk and tiny bits of chewy dog treats as that is all we had available at the time..She was frightened and shy but I grabbed hold of her and brought her in and she now has our hearts and a nice warm home with plenty food..that was a week ago. Took her to vet yesterday..They guess she is 6 weeks. healthy so far. no sign of mom or other kittens..

  13. John Hollis

    My tortie is the best companion and my best friend. Tiger has been with me for the past 6 years. Friendliest cat you ever met. Smart too. Torties are the best.

  14. Bonnie Schultz

    I adopted a Torti back in 2004 from a client who told me a mother cat showed up on her doorstep. I wish I could show you a picture, she was absolutely gorgeous with a beautiful tan stripe all the way from the tip of her nose to her forehead with a white tuxedo chest. She was the most skittish kitty I have ever had. She was afraid of everything, including everyone but me. I think that’s why I loved her so much; I was the only person she ever really loved and trusted. She did not purr until she was 4 years old. She was very territorial, my bed was reserved for just the two of us. If any other cat came for love, she wouldn’t have it! I miss my sweet baby Chica, my beauty queen. She passed away 11 months ago from pancreatitis at the young age of 13. She will be in my heart and sole forever.

  15. Sherri

    I have a 16 year old tortishell and she is far from being playful as of matter of fact she’s my big meany girl I can only pet her for like 10 seconds ???

  16. Kerry Ann

    I miss my Tabbi-girl (Tabitha) she recently crossed over the ? rainbow bridge on March 8th (2019) she was turning 15 in June. She had so many vocal sounds. Not the normal mews, meows and purrs. Surprised this article never mentioned their wide vocal noises. She was my Hunter. If anything got in my apartment she was the one to get it. (Not that it happened very often and she was indoor only) also one thing I have noticed with torties is that they tend to be smaller then other cats of the same litter. She had 7 brother and sisters with only one other tortie (although her sister was a tortie and white and had with white paws) both sisters were the smallest of the litter where the other females were a bit bigger and the makes were much larger. The mother must have had a gene for
    the tortieshell coloring.(although she was black) Out of her two (13 kittens) litters she had 4 tortie and whites and one true Tortishell Calico and one calico kitten (white with patches of colors)

  17. Phoebe

    I hope my beautiful DILUTE Tortoiseshell lives into the 19 + category of years. She turned 14 on February 10, 2019. For those that don’t know, a dilute tortoiseshell has a muted color combination of blue and cream, some areas look gray but the muted blue is gorgeous, especially in the sunlight! Whereas the non dilute tortoiseshell has the mix of black and orange. She is the sweetest and best cat I have ever had. Smart, opinionated, loyal and a true lover of her human mom! She has to be in the same room with me during her awake hours and sleeps with me at night a lot of the time. She’s the cat love of my life!!

  18. TortieOwner

    We adopted a female tortie just a couple of days ago, and we totally love her. She is super energetic, exciting, fun, playful, curious and affectionate. While she is significantly smaller than our male cat, she is definitely a feisty little thing. She does not wish to follow his rules; she wants to create her own. I hope they will manage to develop a necessary bond, for they have to share the same household for the next few years.

  19. Bob Jones

    I have a rescued tortoise now 5 years old who has never sit in my lap, doesn’t want to be petted, will fight if picked up and only speaks when she wants something specific ie fresh food ,water ect. She is very energetic, plays by her self and dominates our marine coon.she picks the spot where she wants to be fed, at times under the sofa or a hidden area. If we don’t follow her instructions she will back kick the food and refuse to eat. In spite of this I love little Patches.

  20. Celia

    I have adopted two Torties so far who found us and both have been very special forming quite a bond with me. As many other owners have said, they are very loyal affectionate creatures once you have their trust particularly as some can be very wary of strangers or new circumstances. My present Tortie is very intelligent and has come to understand quite a few words. At times, it feels more as though I have a dog as she follows me around when I ask her to come and goes to her bed when I tell her – extraordinary for a cat!!!! Although demanding, they reward you many times over with their love if you give them what they need – affection, playtime, attention and respect!

  21. angela

    I have a 19 year old tortie named Asia. She truly is so special and has so much character. Entitlement should be her middle name lol. She makes her own rules and I’m happy with that, as I feel grateful to be her caretaker. There is not one day I take for granted with her. She is extremely manipulative and highly intelligent. I wouldn’t change anything about her. The best thing I ever did in my life, was adopting Asia (formally Tigger) from the SPCA when she was 9 years old. She suits her name (Asia) so well. I cannot believe anybody ever gave her up as she is truly incredible.

  22. D

    Hey everyone i have loved reading all of these comments. I have a 10 year old calico tortie. Had her since she was lile 4 weeks old. She really is the cat love of my life. She is like a lil doggie. Very smart very strong willed very independent and aloof but so so sweet when she decides to be! I do feed her only all natural cat food but also bad treats lol. Hope she will be with me for years to come.

    1. Iiiiidk

      Tortoiseshell/calico cats that are male are sterile.
      It is likely that the coloring of the mother was passed onto the kitten and calico (the colors your describing) can show up in many forms like your cat!

  23. C.C.

    We’ve had ours 10 yrs and she still hates being picked up. I know she trusts us implicitly as she bares her tummy and lets us rub her belly or sleeps long periods in our laps. We just have to adjust our expectations of affection to match hers!

  24. brenda makela

    We have recently fostered a long hair tortie from a shelter…COVID19. She is 10 months…beautiful. It has only been 2 days and she is coming around. I can see the independent nature…though only two days with us. For one…she requires two litter boxes. One for each number (lol). Discovered that when the shower floor was used for #2. So…problem solved… A very pretty girl…

  25. Donna A Coulon

    I have a 15 year old Tortey. She has a thyroid and kidney issue. I know here lifespan inside, is 10 to 15 years. I hope she beats the odds. I’ve had her since She was 5 months old. Her name is Tuts. She is my heart and soul. Please send her healing energy. Thank you. DC

  26. Jessie P

    I have a tortie, she’s less than a year old.. she’s a cuddle bug but she chooses her humans. She’s very much a daddy’s girl, but when he’s not around then I’m good enough to cuddle up with lol. She’s the sweetest cat, but sometimes stubborn. I would definitely say she has a little bit of catitude sometimes. She loves other cats and dogs, and shows no fear around anyone, very confident. The only issue I am having with her at the moment is she shivers a lot, mainly when she sleeps. I’ve never had this problem before with any past cats.

  27. LeJoie

    100% dog person here, and I just inherited my aunts torti after she passed. The only reason I’m keeping the cat (that I’m allergic to) is because of how much my aunt adored her. She’s been here for a couple days now and we literally have conversations and even arguments! I’m truly amazed with how this animal communicates and how different it is from having a dog! She’s so stubborn and expressive, and while I’m still 100% dog person (and she’s not one of those “practically a dog” cats FYI) I guess I’m now a dog person with a cat! I look forward to seeing her at the end of every day and even arguing with her when she walks across my computer or hisses at my dog. Appreciated this article and the info provided because I am certainly still learning A. LOT. !

  28. Chazquah

    Hello! I have a beautifully soft long hair, Tortiseshell cat name Jazzy. It’s short for Jasmine. When she first came to live with my family, she was 18 months old and very anti-social. She seemed to hate everybody and we couldn’t figure out why. I didn’t think she could purred at all. Thanks to Jackson Galaxy’s YouTube video and online information, we have learned about Jazzy. She is a clever cat and is drawn to adult females in the family. She likes only a particular type of food and doesn’t tolerate young children at all. But other than that? If we give her- her space she wants to sit on laps and be petted and be apart of the room. She is so sweet and friendly and you know what, she does purr.

  29. Megan

    My tortoiseshell is about to turn 2 years old. She is an indoor cat and hasnʻt been spayed (donʻt plan to). She is a rescue kitten and the doctor thinks she was about a week old with minimal milk from mom, maybe first day or two but I was able to nurse her back to health. Not sure if her first week impacted this but she is a tiny cat! When she is heat, she is very vocal and loves the cuddles, when she is out of heat she is less social but still visible. She definitely feels like a split personality cat LOL. She is usually ok with short travels and wonʻt clam up but I once took her on a plane and she was like a feral cat, only hissing, hiding and scratching without eating or drinking but she adjusted after a few days and was back to normal. She is super playful, gentle on the paws/scratching but likes to push the limits of gentle to pain for biting LOL. She loves when we have human company unless there are too many people 1-3 is usually fine but she absolutely hates other cats. Love her so much <3

  30. Top

    Why isn’t the cat in the above photo (under Personality and Temperament) considered a calico? It has a sizeable white marking on its neck and chest. I have 5 torts and I absolutely adore them all. 🙂

  31. Rhonda

    I got my baby when she was 10 weeks old. She is an Amazing love of my life. I couldn’t have it any other way. She is my love that completes my heart.

  32. Jim

    We adopted a litter of three, siblings found feral when they were tiny. One’s a torty. Her brothers are tabbies. They’re age eight now, indoor cats. All lean and strong and about 15 pounds. The tortoiseshell is Bolt – my wife named her that; it’s what she does anytime we opened a door we don’t want her to go through. Once she’s there, especially if she’s outside, she just sits down and wait for us to come get her. I think she enjoys the drama.
    Bolt is calm, extremely affectionate – a velcro cat – curious, and very smart. She likes getting into kitchen cabinets, and quickly figured out how to defeat every child-proof latch we tried until we installed some that need a magnet to open.
    We put on videos of birds and squirrels for them. There’s one with music that starts first. If we put that on, by the time the music reaches the second bar Bolt’s there. Her brothers don’t show up until they hear the birds.
    We fostered kittens for a while, and Bolt was very maternal with them.
    Her brothers often compete to be the alpha and take turns bullying each other – Bolt’s not interested, but every now and then one of them decides to bully her. She ignores it as long as she can, but when she gets mad she’ll chase them around the house beating the crap out of them for a good half hour. Then they don’t try picking on her for another couple of months until the memory apparently fades.
    Bolt is definitely my favorite. All I can say. Her brothers are great too, but she’s unlike any other cat I’ve known.

    1. Steve91

      I was gifted a tortie almost 6 years ago by a neighbor in 2015. Her name is Arya. She is insane sweet super smart and severely protective of me or anything of mine our hers. This cat is my best friend. If im late home from work she is waiting at the door to scold me. Several friends have all sworn she talks. And she understands plenty of english. She is not to found of kittens but is ok with adult male cats. She loves to go for rides let me know when bed time is and what time to get up. Ive never had a cat with her intelligence. Honestly this cat saved my life id be lost with out my tortie

  33. Eva Vauchee


    Enjoyed reading about Torties but I adopted an 11 year old Calico, Lucy, from a shelter more than 1&1/2 years ago & would appreciate information about Calico’s.. She is beautiful with a beautifully kept white stomach, black racoon markings around both eyes, just like a real racoon& the rest a mixture of black & orange. She has been a difficult cat with hissing & some bad bites but she is quite loving as well. & more so as we gett to know each other. I do love her & of course don’t know about her prior years which could explain her aggression. Would love to get your take on my Lucy who is my much loved last puss.

  34. Cindy Holloway

    I have a brindled tortie at home. Her name is willow and she is just 3 months old. She is very affectionate and loves to cuddle especially just in front of your neck if you are laying down. I wake up to find her under the blanket with me as well lol. She is very playful as all kittens are and gets along great with my other kitties. Only time will tell of all of her personality traits !!

  35. Louise lopina

    Rhonda was shelter adopted at six months fostered from the Northen California wildfires. She is an amazing adventurous people loving cat. The first week she did a running leap through the banisters and sailed through the air legs outstretched over a flight of carpeted stairs. She didn’t try that again. She’s learned to use a scratching box for her nails by getting a reward for each use. Now she’ll scratch sit down and look at us for treat. Whose traing who!! Intelligent and a delightful companion

    1. small mallory photoMallory Crusta

      Thanks for telling us about Rhonda, Louise. Her leap across the stairs sounds very impressive, and I love that she scratches for treats! Sounds like an amazing cat. 🙂

  36. Natalie marshall

    I had a calico named puska she was the best cat she passed away at home on the 13/9/2021 she was 10 years old kidney failure I don’t think I will ever replace her she was the best maybe time will heal

  37. Linda

    We adopted a tortie from the rescue maybe 5 years ago and she is extremely sweet. She was frightened when we were first meeting her but she settled in quickly and became queen of the castle. She is definitely high energy, playful, and can be quite demanding when she wants something (example, in the morning she’ll stand next to the bed and meow until I get up and feed her). She’s not a lap cat or a snuggle cat, but she does like being around us, loves being petted and brushed, and has a very loud purr. She got along great with our RB kitty Swanie (a very laid back tuxie). After he passed away, we adopted Austin (tabby), and Cricket had her tail in quite a twist for a while. We let her get used to him for a couple weeks by puttng up a baby gate between the bedroom and hallway. There was a lot of growling from Cricket, while Austin pretty much said hi I’m Austin! Want to play? They get along great now, some mutual grooming and wrestling, and they like hanging out together, but no snuggling. I’m sure Austin would (he is my sweet lap kitty), but that’s not in Cricket’s nature

  38. Tache

    I have a calico cat and she very laid back and live kids but she don’t really care for any outsiders…she like to sit up high on things so she can look down on things like the queen she is ..

  39. Koko

    I love my tortoiseshell. Her name is Pahokee. We made her an indoor kitten when she was about 7-8 weeks because our neighborhood has a terrible problem with strays and “feeder breeders”. I have seen some horrible things done to the strays and ferals around here; people can be absolutely cruel to animals, it’s unbelievable. My partner and I were heading out to the grocery store one evening and she was just sitting there on our front porch with another male kitten that was older and not from the same litter. She came right up to us and the rest is history. The other cat ran away and would not dare to approach. Pahokee is incredibly intelligent, energetic, and affectionate. She adjusted to indoor life very quickly and seems so happy. She loves to look out the windows but doesn’t express much desire to get back outside, so I’m more confident now in my decision to make her an indoor cat. I was worried at first that I did the wrong thing, but I think her life is better with a real home and a person who genuinely cares about her well being. People here like to feed and see the kittens but don’t care about them anymore once they reach a certain age.

  40. Al

    I have a tortoiseshell named Rita. I think she is around 1 yr. old. Recently got her a couple of weeks ago off of a woman from craigslist. My friend drove me almost 2 hours to go pick her up. The owner I got her from was not the original, and said she thinks she was abandoned and or neglected as a kitten. As a result, she is super timid and bad with other cats. Having no other animals, I thought this would be a good fit as it seems she could not be around other felines. I did not want a cat that would struggle being alone. I live in an apartment and with the help of scratching posts and cat trees, I have turned it into a cat haven. When I first brought her home she wouldn’t even come of the carrier I got her in. She wasn’t eating, she was terrified. After a couple of days I went to the pet store and bought the FELIWAY diffuser for $30. This made such a big difference. She went from always hiding and not eating to cuddling and talking with me every single day. She is the best cat and has essentially cured my depression and anxiety.

  41. MetalHead

    I have a stray tortoiseshell named Koba. I’ve been feeding her since she was a kitten. She was a frightened and angry looking kitten. If she heard me breath while she was eating, she’d scurry away and return in 30 minutes or more to finish eating. Her facial expression reminded me of the very angry laboratory chimp Koba in Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes, which is why I named her that. My guess was that somebody did something very mean to her. As she got bigger, she eventually finally sucked up to me and we’ve been great friends since. She’s now about 2 years old and she’s a happy go lucky cat with a happy face. I had her spayed and got her shots. I was hoping that she would be put up for adoption so she can have a safe indoor life, but according to the staff she’s want a good candidate for adoption. They claimed she wasn’t very friendly lol. I believe them. She only trusts me and hisses at everyone else. So I brought her back home and here she roams. I’ve been working on transitioning her toward indoor living. It’s working so far. I’d like her to eventually live with me indoors permanently. We’ll see.

  42. Amy

    Hi there, I have a 13 y/o Tortie, Rosie. I adopted her when she was a baby, 4 months after I adopted my puppy, Daisy. They are both the same age so now, as Seniors, they are more accepting of each other’s presence. In the beginning, pups would torment and kitty would hide. It’s somewhat like that now but more like a game. Rosie loves her solitude as queen of my bedroom and hides out alot, making a surprise appearance every now and then. She is vocal and very sweet when she comes out of hiding. She is not a cuddler though. Doesn’t like to be handled except on her own regal terms, lol

  43. Jessica

    We rescued our kitten out of a customers truck a year ago. She was so small and completely wild but came around very quickly. She is so smart and full of energy like nothing I have ever seen before. I tell everyone who says they don’t like cats it’s no problem because she identifies as a dog, lol.
    She comes when called, sits on command, plays fetch (and yes I’ve caught her playing fetch with me in my sleep) tries to bury toys in the couch, she is so much fun! I love bragging about the cat who traveled 21 miles as a kitten to find us and now it’s our turn to take care of her! She is a happy, sassy, smart and trainable cat.

  44. Irene

    When our last cat passed, we went to the vet to adopt a kitten and ended up adopting 2 torties. (sisters) Can’t split up a family. One is Tazz and the other Crazzo! Very shy and skittish but curiosity got them exploring. Now there are 4 of us in a 3500 foot house with a sun-room. We keep them in, always, to save the birds and we don’t have to give them flea and tick poison. These girls can: open drawers, turn lights off and on, jump up to at a four foot countertop. They sleep on top of our curio cabinets, (seven feet tall) they go from the small bookcase then leap to the cabinets. They take turns. They watch EVERYTHING. One sleeps under a comforter, the other sleeps under my bed. (usually)
    They love their Mom, who brought them home. (bonded) Tazz likes when I let the water trickle in the sink, she slaps at the stream and sprays it all over. They get to smell and hear the world outside the open, screened window. The Dynamic Duo are non-stop torties. If they can possibly climb there, they’re there. They never fight with each other. As you might have figured, we LOVE our girls.

  45. Nancy

    I’ve had 2 torties. Both beautiful, sweet, and loving females. Our first was a talker and had something to say about everything. She was very affectionate and wanted to be right next to me, my husband, or her brother at all times. She was attached at the hip to her litter mate and when he got out of the house a few times, she would tattle on him and call to him through the window until he came back. When he died, she died soon after presumably of a broken heart. Such a sweet cat, she is greatly missed. Our current tortie has some similar traits, but is more independent. She is fine with alone time, but is frequently calling out to us when we pass by. Making sure we stop to say hello and give her a good rub. She is a great model to our younger cat, teaching her how to catch flies, etc. One interesting thing I’ve noticed with both torties – sensitive stomachs. Our first tortie vomited often and eventually acquired what I called kitty chrones disease. The vet has not found anything with our current tortie, but we are particular with her food and feeding schedule to prevent stomach upset as much as possible. Even with this issue, these girls have been my favorite cats over the years. I am a huge fan of torties and plan to adopt another when the time comes.

  46. Toni

    My tortie is the best. Tilly’s unique personality makes her who she is. When I first got her she was only 5 weeks old the vet said. She was extremely friendly with everyone and then I don’t know what happened. She won’t let anyone near her and hisses at them. Grown men won’t even go by her. But she loves me and I am the only one can go near her. She sleeps with me every night and she f I stay up later she will pace the floor till I get in bed. She is extremely unique and special on what she does. I will wake up and she is laying on top of me and I tilt my head and she is staring right at me. Scary sometimes. : )

  47. Karen

    I have a kitten of 3 months old that is a tortoiseshell cat. I think it’s a male, but not absolutely sure yet. He is the sweetest thing, but he acts like he knows that he’s strange looking!

  48. Tammy D

    I have a tortoius shell female.Sage is 2, has 7 toes on her front feet. She is very oppionated Loud and what she wants she takes. She hates to be held. But when she wants attention she most definitely knows how to get it. Sage is my youngest furbabie. Jazmyn is my 14 yr oldfemale tuxedo cat. She is small. I also have a 9yr old 42 lb femake boxer & a 100 lb pit lab. And Sage is the boss.

  49. Tammy D

    Oh that she is.. and yes it is a wonderful furbabie family in my home we also have
    1- 18 yr old, son
    1 – 19yr daughter
    1 – 36 yr old son
    Myself & my hubby
    There is always extra teens coming and going.
    I also babysit a 7 month old baby 5 to 6 days a week.
    And sometimes have all 5 of her siblings.
    3 Brothers ages 10, 6 , 4 all of whom r very energetic.
    2 sister ages 13 & 6
    Our home is very full and rarely quiet
    But would have it any other way.

  50. Adasha Knight

    Yep! I have one tortie in my 24 cats. When she is annoyed by the other cats, she will bitch slap them into yesterday! It’s so funny! I have her videos on TikTok.
    She also sits like an old man when she bathes herself. Legs open and belly hanging, sitting up straight.
    I never noticed until reading this that while she will let others pet her with no issues, she is attached to only one person , me, the one who bottle fed her from day 5. She come to me at night and puts her leg on me, like “hey, I’m here for my back scratches.” So I scratch her back and she sleeps next to me all night. She is VERY smart and knows how to get what she wants!

  51. Dorothy McRo

    how alike your Jubilee and my “Puss”are in character. Puss will be 21 in December ’22 and is quite frisky still. My arm chair has been taken over by her, with her looking over my shoulder when she figures its time to take over my comfortable seat. she has a little white on 2 paws, is now on early renal food applicable to her condition. One wouldn’t think there was anything wrong with her, Puss is in charge and I’m surprised she doesn’t charge me rent to live in HER home.

  52. Greg

    So far three cats have adopted me, one from a barn and two from a rescue shelter. Until reading this article I had thought they were all tortoiseshell’s. It turns out the one who is a Mischief hence her name is a calico. So two tortoiseshell’s and a calico fabulous.
    All three have and had very different personalities. Smokie as she was called before she adopted me produced two tortoiseshell’s, a black and white male and a marmalade.
    She was amazing. While living in an upstairs flat she would greet me at the door as soon as the key turned. Low and behold she dragged my slippers downstairs and they would be warm from her sleeping on them. Wasn’t supposed to have animals at the flat. One day an inspector came to visit. Just before he arrived picked her up and put her under the bed with the covers down to the floor and told her to stay. Inspector left and went to get her, she was sat making dough looking at me as if to say “I’ve been a good girl, can I come out now”. She absolutely refused to go outside even when trying to force her when living in Northampton. As soon as I went back to the south coast she promptly went out, producing her litter of four. She was 18 years old the last time I saw her. Laid on my chest making dough and dribbling. Had to leave to go back to college and she went behind the telly and passed over within the hour. Many, many happy memories of her.
    Both Mischief (calico) and Twilight were ill when they arrived at my forever home for them with about an acre of land 200 plus yards from the road. Thought I was going to lose them. Twilight especially. Now both are happy and healthy. Mischief was named because shortly after adopting me as her slave she robbed the kitchen. Forgot and went to bed leaving four covered chicken thighs out. In the morning came down and she could hardly move her tummy was so bloated. Two and a half thighs were gone. Mischief used to be very nervous and would cower when reaching out to stroke her. Cured that by spending many hours with her on my lap stroking and making a fuss.
    Twilight got her name because she seems to be able to literally disappear right in front of you any time of the day.
    Both are the local terrors of the rodent life around here. In the eight years since arriving they between them have killed somewhere around 10k mice, rats and a few rabbits. Between 3-6 per day each. Discourage them from birding with a gentle tap between the eyes and showing that I’m cross.

  53. Victoria Bradford

    We got Callie at the SPCa. She was found in a box when just a few weeks old, She is now a few moths old. We have had cats our whole life-I am 83 but we never met a cat like this! She plays fetch and a type pf kitten tennis-We did not teach her. She can climb walls without leaving a mark. She watches are very move and the only difficulty we have is trying to stop her from Jumping on the table LOL We say NO which she and lift her down but she gets right back up. She is also dangerous to our paintings when a sun beam crosses them- She does not like to be held obut will cuddle up to our feet and when we are asleep she cuddles up in the bed between us. To our delight she started to jump into the basket on our walkers. which we can zip up a sunscreen and she can go with us for a walk. She alolike her carrier which none of our other cats did. We have a harness to take her for walks but will wait until she gets all her shots and tick protection. She is very different from any cat we have ever owned and we loved them all. I read that they are vocal but she does not meow or purr which I hope the vet can explain?

    1. small mallory photoMallory Crusta

      Sometimes, cats will be more quiet like this due to kittenhood circumstances. Because she was abandoned early in life, she probably didn’t learn to purr or meow during the key socialization period. I love how you’ve developed an affectionate bond with her despite her quiet personality, and it sounds like she has a wonderful life with you. All the best!

  54. Holly

    My rescued tortie won my heart in the hospital parking lot when she followed me and raised up on her hind legs to reach for my hand with her front paws. She sat in my lap the hour and 15 minutes it takes for me to get home from work on the day I took her in. She loves to love on you (a lap/shoulder cat), and she is very vocal. She just had 2 kittens, one is a tan tabby and one is jet black. She is such a good mommy for a young cat. She got out about a month after we had her during a snow storm for 4 days and came home preggers. I am falling for her kittens.

  55. Michele

    My tortie showed up around the first of February 2022. I wouldn’t say she’s good luck since my best friend died later that year and I’ll never get over that. But that wasn’t Gremmie’s fault. When I first saw her I thought she looked like a hobgoblin because she has eyes the size of quarters and enormous ears that look like gigantic, pointed beach umbrellas. She’s a small cat so those features really stand out. However, she is slender and elegant and cute. She’s very energetic (and destructive) and her favorite way of showing affection is to butt me with her head. I named her Gremmie because gremlins are cuter than hobgoblins. I have other cats and she does present a problem–she hates my oldest cat, Kiku, and she bullies poor Kiku relentlessly. But I love Gremmie anyway, at least as much as I can.

  56. Amber

    We lost our sweet tortie Bella baby yesterday after 13 years of life. She was so sweet. She would come lay with me either above my head or would nestle her body between my torso and under my arm. I held her without realizing it sometimes. She talked a lot and one day I swore she said momma! She loved sitting in our bay window watching the birds. She also fought other frequent visitor cats at our side door window. Pretty comical. She had favorite spots to sleep and she loved to rub against my pant legs when I was wearing black. She slept on my side of the bed when I was gone from the room. She could tell when you needed her and she always gave cat nudges aka kisses and loves. She had the best personality. We are heart broken and are struggling with her absence. We pray we will find another tortie in the future.

    1. kateKate Barrington Post author

      I’m so sorry for your loss, Amber. Having recently lost one of my own cats, I understand what you’re going through. It sounds like Bella loved you dearly and had a wonderful life, thanks to you.