Tabby Cat vs Tortoiseshell

Cats come in so many different shapes and sizes. There are huge cats, like the Maine Coon and small cats, like the Munchkin, both of which are known for their sizes. There are also cats that are known for their coat pattern, which is one of the most prominent things about cats. The two most commonly recognized patterns are the tabby and tortoiseshell cats. Even though these cats are ordinary domesticated pets, there’s still a lot of interesting things to know about them, and while there are a lot of similarities, they’re also very unique compared to one another.

Tabby Cat vs Tortoiseshell

If you’re thinking of getting a cat, you should get a cat that you love. Both the tabby and tortoiseshell cats are beautiful, but there are some differences between these two cats. They may not be too prominent, but you should know about them before you choose one of the patterned cats.

They’re Both Patterns, Not Breeds’

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The tabby cat and the tortoiseshell cat patterns are not a breed of cat. Even though people often refer to cats as tabby or tortoiseshell as they would a cat that’s a Maine Coon or a Munchkin, it’s only a pattern. The patterns are also very different from one another. Tabby cats have a pattern that is striped, spotted and swirled while Tortoiseshell cats have a pattern that resembles the circular pattern of a tortoiseshell. There’s even a pattern that’s a mixture of the two and it’s known as a torbie.

It’s a common misconception that they are a breed, but the reality is that those terms refer to a pattern. Any breed of cat can be a tabby cat because it’s one of the most common coat pattern jeans and all domestic cats. Tortoiseshell cats are very common but some breeds are more commonly Tortoiseshell cats than others. Cats like the Persian, Maine coon, British Shorthair and Cornish Rex are more often turtle shells that many other breeds. Both the Tabby and tortoiseshell pattern codes can combine genes for a unique design.

Overall, if you want a tabby cat or a tortoiseshell cat, you next have to decide what kind of breed you want. There are a lot of different tabby cat breeds that are very popular, but it might be a little harder to find a tortoiseshell cat. Explore the different temperaments of each breed that has a tabby or tortoiseshell pattern and see which one fits your home life the most.

Tabby Cats Have 5 Possible Coat Patterns

Tabby cats have much more coat patterns and a tortoiseshell cat. Turtle shell cats feature orange and black colors that are interconnected with one another resulting in a splotchy pattern all over their body. The pattern ends up resembling a real turtle shell. They also might sometimes have white bellies or have a clean split faced with orange on one side and black on the other.

Tabby patterns are much more complex and there are five distinct patterns. The one most commonly seen on cats is the classic tabby pattern which appears as dark swirls in different shapes and sizes all over their body. They usually have the pattern stop at their feet.

The next common pattern for a tabby cat is the mackerel pattern. This is where the thin and medium-sized stripes go all over their whole body. The stripes run vertically to the back so it looks like the mackerel fish bone structure, which is where it gets its name from.

The next pattern is the spotted tabby pattern coat. This coat has Different size spots all over its body and they usually appear at random and take different shapes. Some are around circles While others are distinct ovals.

The next pattern is the ticked pattern which is most commonly seen in Siamese cats. This is when the individual hair follicles have horizontal stripes instead of being in the entire follicle.

The last pattern is detached pattern which is usually similar to what you see on a turtle shell cat. The spots are in specific locations instead of across his whole body.

What’s unique about the Tabby and turtle shell pattern makes is that it has stripes along the side of his body many other Tabby patterns might be present also. It’s not uncommon to find a mix of classic and spotted patterns on Turtle shell cats.

Sometimes Whittaker’s is that the patches might remain so it’ll turn into what people called patched tabby cats. Is very easy to get these cats mixed up because some might have Tabby stripes and others might be difficult to see because of their color. It’s always hard to tell the difference between the two but you can always look at his forehead because the Tabby has the distinct and pattern on its forehead. You can also look for orange on other areas of the cat’s body like it’s feet to see if it’s a tortoiseshell mixture.

Tortoiseshell Cats and Orange Tabbies Occur in One Sex

There’s also some occurrences tortoiseshell cats and tabby cats have where the pattern is more common in one sex than the other. For example, male tortoiseshell cats are very rare. Only female cats might be a preference but it’s very hard to come across a male tortoiseshell cat. One out of every three thousand tortoiseshell cat will be mailed. Because he’s are so rare this means that female tortoiseshell cats are more dominant.

The reason female tortoiseshell cats are the norm is because of the genes of the cats. Female tortoiseshell cats have two X chromosomes which determine its coloring. Having two X chromosomes means female cats carry both the orange and black colors that are needed to make a tortoiseshell patterned cat. Males have an X and Y chromosome so the likelihood of them carrying both color genes is very rare. They only have one color gene so the male cats will be only orange or black and not a combination.

Usually when people find male tortoiseshell cats there is some concern. Male tortoiseshell cats are usually sterile because of their genetics. The likelihood of them reproducing is very low because they usually end up with two X chromosomes and one Y chromosome. The two X chromosomes means that they develop both the orange and black colors for the combination of the extra chromosome causes health issues that may decrease the life expectancy of the cat. Even though it’s very rare, there are some fertile male tortoiseshell cats.

Tabby cats are mostly male for the same reason. The ratio of male to female orange tabby cats is 80% to 20%. The X chromosome is responsible for the orange coloring and females have two X chromosomes while males have an X and a Y chromosome. This means the female orange tabby cat requires both desire and the damn to pass on the orange gene to the offspring. Males only need the orange gene from their mother so they’re more likely to be orange.

Another distinct thing about orange tabby cats is that they are very vocal. National Geographic says that personality is tied to your cat’s coat color. And while everyone has a cat with a different personality, orange cats have been consistently more vocal than any other breed. They’re also known for being very attached to their owners, so if you want a snuggly cat consider getting an orange tabby.

Tabby Cats Can Be Identified By an “M”

Tortoiseshell cats do not have an identifier besides their pattern. Tabby cats are distinctly Tabby because of the M on their forehead. No one knows why they have the “M” on their forehead but it must be tied to the cats genetics for all of the tabby cats to have that on their forehead. Tortoiseshell cats will only have this “M” on their forehead if they have the tabby gene inside of them. There are a lot of myths surrounding why they might have the “M” on their forehead but it’s mostly linked to genetics.

You Need to Know to Know This About Your Cat

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Tortoiseshell Cats are Costly

tabby cats are costly only because of the breed that has the tabby pattern on it. For example, if it’s a tabby Munchkin or a tabby Maine coon, then it will be way more expensive to get that cat then it is to get a tabby Domestic Shorthair. Tortoiseshell cats are much more costly than a typical domestic house cat. It’ll usually be between 1,000 USD and 3,000 USD.

This coat pattern is less frequently seen than others so it’s more expensive. The cost of the tortoiseshell cat also depends on the age of the cat. Purebred tortoiseshell cats are always going to be more expensive than the mixed cats. Also, kittens that are purebred are more expensive than the older purebred cats because kittens are more in demand.

There are expensive cat breeds that have both the tabby and tortoiseshell patterns. These are usually quite expensive not only because of their breed but because of the rarity of the pattern. There’s a list of some of the breeds that had both the patterns that are rather expensive. Make sure to save up a little more if you want one of these braids.

  • American Wirehair
  • Scottish Fold
  • Sphinx
  • Russian Blue
  • Bengal
  • American curl
  • Ocicat
  • Siamese
  • Maine Coon
  • Persian

Adoption is definitely a good option to keep in mind if you’re looking to save money. There are a lot of costs already associated with raising a cat so if you want to obtain a cat for low-cost, you can go to a shelter. Adoption cost for regions of range between 40 USD and 100 USD.

Keep in mind that you also have to get things like beds (view on Amazon), food, litter (view on Amazon) and grooming supplies, but you will save a lot of money just from paying very little for the cat. Shelters usually have a ton of domestic shorthair tabby cats so you don’t have to worry about not being able to find one. It might be a little harder to find a tortoiseshell patterned cat, but you can keep going from shelter to shelter until you find one.

Tabby and tortoiseshell cats are both beautiful cats. They have their similarities, but they’re not the same pattern. Even though it’s hard to tell them apart, you might be able to tell if you look closely at the pattern.