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What is a Calico Cat?

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  • Originally Written By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Revised By: A. Joseph
  • Edited By: Lucy Oppenheimer
  • Last Modified Date: 29 November 2014
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Contrary to popular belief, a calico cat is not a specific breed of cat. It is instead a pattern of coloring that can occur in many breeds, including manx, Persian and domestic short-hair cats. To be considered a calico cat, a cat must be tri-colored, with patches of white, black and red or orange fur. Some breeds have rules as to what percentage of the cat's fur must be white for it to be called a calico cat.

Determined by Chromosomes

Calico cats are nearly always female because the genes that determine the color of the cats' fur are carried on X chromosomes. A calico cat has one X chromosome that has the gene for orange fur and an X chromosome that has the gene for black fur. Females have two X chromosomes, so it is possible for them to carry one X chromosome that has the orange color gene and one that has the black color gene. Male cats, however, normally have one X chromosome and one Y chromosome, so it is possible for them to have only one color gene or the other. Some male cats that have a genetic anomaly that causes them to have XXY chromosomes can be calico cats, but they are extremely rare and are almost always sterile.

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Color Mixtures

Calico cats have sections of different colors in their fur. Usually, the calicoes that have more white fur also have larger and more distinct patches of color. If the orange and black fur is mixed, the cat is called a tortoiseshell. Tortoiseshell cats, or "torties," as they are commonly known, have little or no white fur.

Variations

A variation on the usual calico color pattern is seen in dilute or pastel calico cats. These variations get their name from the fact that the color pattern is a diluted or pastel version of the typical colors. A dilute or pastel calico cat has a pattern of buff or cream instead of orange as well as blue — a slate gray color — instead of black.

Traditions and More

Throughout history, many cultures have considered calico cats to be lucky. At one point in Japan, calico cats were thought to bring good luck in houses and to protect sailors on their ships. The calico cat was adopted as the Maryland state cat on 1 October 2001 because its colors are the same as the Baltimore Oriole and the Baltimore Checkerspot butterfly — the state bird and insect, respectively.

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anon228775
Post 106

Wow! this has so many comments! I am amazed so many people had questions about their cats!

anon204972
Post 105

I am the owner of a male dilute calico. He's my best friend. His name is Charcoal. He's all black on the surface, and his undercoat is white and grey. He has light traces of red mixed into the black, which can only be seen in good lighting. He's six years old.

I found him when he was two weeks old, under my porch, along with his five siblings, one of which was a calico female, two being black females, and one being an orange tabby male. I kept Charcoal and adopted out the others after raising them for five months together. Charcoal is my best friend with fur. He has a wonderful sense of humor. He loves to agitate me by stealing my chair when I get up. He sleeps on my chest if I am gone from home too long. Otherwise, he occupies my feet until my husband wakes up, and then he takes his warm spot besides me. If I walk outside, he stands by the door and waits. Sometimes he will cry. He loves to have his belly rubbed, and if he gets into a lovey mood, he will become rather hard to ignore about wanting attention.

If I bring home grocery bags, he will sniff through each and every one, looking for his goodie. If I forget a goodie, he snubs me for a whole day. If I fuss at him, he will sulk on the dash of the RV, behind the curtain for hours. He sits at my feet when I am working on the computer. He lays by the kitchen door when I cook in the kitchen. If I close the bathroom door, he claws at it until I open it. He likes to play hide and seek, and chase. Hi favorite treats are fresh grass, catnip and chicken-filled kitty treats. He never eats human food, as I don't feed it to him, and he hates it. But he has, once, stolen my whipped cream from out of my hot chocolate when I had my head turned. He talks to me when I ask him how he is. He sits near me when I am sick or he is sick. He'll talk a lot if he is feeling like he's going to toss a hairball.

He was an unexpected friend, and joy in my life. Since meeting him, my life has been happier, more playful and full of love. I love him as much as I love my husband and children and I always will. I even adopted a friend for him so he could have someone to groom with, play with, and snuggle with on cool days. Her name is Dolly. She's an orange tabby. Both Dolly and Charcoal are the same age, and both fixed. The love like siblings and fight like siblings. Both are rescues. I call them my Halloween kitties. One black, and one orange.

anon176859
Post 104

I have a calico kitten. it is white, grey, brown, black and has orange spots that are tiger stripes like morris the cat, light and dark orange. it is also a manx and has no tail. is this unusual?

anon158059
Post 103

I have a calico cat named Sassy, because when she was a kitten she gave everyone a lot of attitude. I mean a lot. If you tried to pet her she would hiss and bite, But, as she grew up she became more respectful. She still bites, but instead of hissing she will pounce on you, all the time, Especially when you are sleeping. O.K., enough about that.

I got her from my cousin, whose calico cat named Speckles, had kittens. There were, I think, six kittens in the litter. Two were calico cats (white, with striped patches of gray, and darker gray), three were orange striped cats with white chests and paws, and one was a white cat with patches of orange, nothing else. After waiting the appropriate amount of time I took Sassy home with me and got to keep her. Sadly, the rest of the kittens (and mother) got sick with Parvo (I think that's how you spell it) and died.

I'd like to know what breed of cat Sassy is. (I know that calico isn't a breed of cat, it is a subspecies of tortoiseshell cats, but it is white and has blocks of colors). Do you think you would know, or have a good idea, of what breed of cat Sassy is?

Her hair is medium length, she usually can find many ways to entertain herself (such as lying in a window sill, picking on the dog, standing in my sister's Zuzu Pets houses, and when I have dollhouses dragged out she will start walking through the doors, poking her head through windows, and standing on top of the roofs. She also knows how to sip some milk (my milk) without me noticing (I just recently found out about it). I have a glass of milk on my table.

While I'm not looking, she jumps on the table and knocks the glass off the table onto the carpet floor, she jumps down and licks the milk up before it sinks into the carpet. When she gets hungry she meows loudly, but rather than jump onto the kitchen table, she jumps onto the white counter across from the table, and jumps into the cat bag and has a feast, like most cats would have done.

She plays with anything that interests her, such as my feet moving under my bed covers, my dog's curly tail (chihuahua), my hair, string, shoelaces, shoes, a ball, and my sister's Zuzu Pets. As you can see she is a very creative thinker. What breed do you think she is? --Lacey

anon157224
Post 102

One side of my cat's face looks like a grey tabby, the other side an orange tabby, and she has patches of orange and black on a white background. Some of the patches of orange have two different shades (a creamy colour and dark orange) and the black patches also have grey mixed in but not like a tabby or tort pattern, more like patches of grey on top of the black if that makes sense. Is she a calico?

anon157105
Post 101

I have an 11 year old female calico that has a white background, black, orange (a very light orange and a much darker orange shade), and grey patches.

She is a very loyal cat and has had almost no health problems. She is now 11 and has made her first ever vet trip.

anon152299
Post 100

I have a beautiful calico, that my daughters adopted for me when she was six weeks old. She's a very loving lap cat, who talks constantly. Somebody left her in a bucket to die, but she was found by a caring person.

She's very smart, loving and comes up on my bed in the morning to check on me and gives me kisses. She loves to play in water in the tub. She's my baby girl, and I love her dearly.

They make wonderful pets, but sometimes can be a little shy around other people. She's adopted my older cat and will try to play with my brother's dog when he visits. She even likes to watch TV. She amazes me by how smart she is.

anon142745
Post 99

Thanks for the info! I got two female calico cats(one "dilute") from a domestic shorthair (male with many amazing patterns) and a tortie. The other two kittens (male) were silver(with spots and stripes, like an egyptian mau) and a beautiful orange (with spots on belly and stripes).

anon126927
Post 98

hey i just got a calico cat and named it Delilah and she is so pretty. i also have another cat who is a calico named Chloe. they're both very pretty!!

Question: How old is a calico cat who is eight inches long?

anon122166
Post 97

I've had my Calico kitten for about five months now and she is just the small little gift that life has given me.

I was suffering from stress and asthma attacks when a friend offered to ask her other friend if I could have a kitten. So she asked and told me the colors of the kittens and I immediately fell in love with the tri-colored kitten.

When I got her she was so small but I just got this sense of pride that I owned a kitty and that she basically saved me. For that I am thankful because living in a home with four brothers and a single mom is a hard life, especially if you're the oldest.

I named her Akira because she is just so bright and smart. Without her I probably would have never felt this much joy that I'm experiencing now.

anon120930
Post 96

For two months, I just cared for a lovely Pastel Calico I found in the field behind my home. She had no fear of me from the start, but I had no idea where she came from.

I have two cats of my own, and am struggling financially; but I saw her as a responsibility nonetheless. I took in all the details about her, and mentioned to many in my personal and professional circles that she needed a home. With a few debating over her care and the obligation, one taker took her in for three days, spent very little time with her, and the cat nipped and began to soil her carpet.

I took her back, and within a week, another family offered to take her in -they say she's perfect, she's on the spot with her litter, respectful of their other female cat, and very loving.

This cat was very social and lonely, all the signs were there, I just got the signals wrong. They pretty much tell us what they want.

anon118203
Post 95

I had a female calico kitten adopt me. My fiance and I named her Callie. She is very smart and brings us a great deal of joy. We truly do love this kitten.

anon118093
Post 94

My grandmother raised calicoes, and now I have continued. I have had in my lifetime a minimum of 30 calicoes. Most of my calicoes are the dark ones. I have one now that adopted me.

Me and my husband were outside about two months ago and around the corner of the house came a stray. I asked her if she was hungry. My husband thought I had lost my mind, but she came right up to me and went around my legs.

I asked around the neighborhood and no one claimed her, so now when I go outside she is right there with me. She likes to tease my dogs. Her name is Khaki.

anon109833
Post 93

I have two calico kittens (almost five months old). I have one of each in the color palette. My white, orange, and black is named Kallie and my "dilute" is named Socks. I love them to pieces! They are sisters (as they came out of the same litter).

anon106862
Post 92

To 54: when the kitten bites you push her gently and say "No" firmly.

anon102088
Post 91

I've had several cats. When the last one died, I was certain I would never have another, but a friend called me with a kitten he had found shivering in a snowdrift.

Of course, i took her and, to me surprise and delight, discovered she is a calico, with light tabby markings. I've had her for seven months now. According to the vet when I got her she was four or five months old, and she has gone from being a very small, scared, very silent kitten, to a very large, loving, cat. Her name is Meow-Yen Kitty, because once she started meowing, she hasn't stopped. But she's very quiet. She only has an "indoor voice".

I love her to death. She is so very funny sometimes, from chasing bugs to being a "furry bear trap" to sleeping on my shoulder. How anybody could abandon this sweet kitty is so far beyond me. -zilla-

anon100090
Post 90

Cats being a part of my life for over 30 years, I finally got a calico. I had a 10 year lapse of no cat until my daughter found her on the streets and she couldn't have been more than two weeks old. She has been with me for the last four years and I just adore her! She has such attitude!

I have always wanted a calico in the past, but where I lived they are hard to find. I know experts say that they are not a breed, but I think my callie would disagree!

anon92528
Post 89

I got my calico kitten three weeks ago and i love and i couldn't imagine losing her. she is my very best friend and i tell her everything.

anon91318
Post 88

I have had my calico going on 23 years. I found her as a barn cat and she has been through thick and thin with me for practically 1/2 of my life. What a wonderful, loving companion. The thought of losing her tears me up but I can have comfort in knowing I helped her to lead a good, long life.

blkrose1976
Post 87

am trying to determine if this male kitten is a calico. he is gray and white and appears to have orange highlights over the gray. I also have a white one with black spots and one of the black spots has orange highlights.

anon88692
Post 86

we just had a litter of kittens about six weeks ago. The mother cat was a maine coon but all of the kittens came out calico. We adopted out two of them but kept one. The one we kept is polydactyly. I was just wondering if that was a trait of calico cats. Or more of a maine coon trait?

anon88366
Post 85

Two days ago, the old garage man came to discuss with my husband about the plan for our garage. It rained and the sun shone that day and at the same day, i was doing my garden.

After few hours, my husband and his nephew heard a kitty voice from somewhere. They looked up the trees from the ground but couldn't find one. but still the sound was very near to where they were sitting.

The garage man's car was just in front of them and they finally figured out that the sound was coming from the car. His nephew opened the engine compartment and found the tiny kitty, but there was no way for any one of them to get the kitty out.

They called me to put my smaller arms in there and get the kitty. We named her Prius because the garage man's car is a Toyota Prius. She is so sweet and an adorable cat.

After two days, we went to the pet shop to check on a kitty for Prius to play with. We adopted one calico which we named Calica, as soon as we entered the house, she bounced, jumping here and there and playing with Prius.

She is a jolly kitty, and we also adopted one and named it Liberty. Now we have three and we are now five at home. By next month, my hubby will go to Afghanistan and I will be left alone with three lovely kittens. -- kepcl

anon87436
Post 84

My beautiful calico cat Cody chose me instantly. I had been thinking for a long time about having a cat but when I came across this bundle of joy she meowed and looked at me to say, 'I choose you.'

I was a a party at the time, but needless to say I came back a week later to claim her as my own. She took to my environment instantaneously and was very vocal, quirky and not nervous in her personality so i never had to worry about her peeing or scratching for attention.

She is very tiny but perfect and has been the perfect addition to my family. If I had more space I would get another Calico.

anon83267
Post 83

Yesterday my neighbors found a beautiful little calico cat. Unable to take her because of there many animals, she adopted me and my boyfriend. She is the most loving, affectionate cat I have ever met. She will jump on you, and cuddle with you and sleep with you. We named her Cali and she has become our princess, and we are more than happy to share our home with her

anon81004
Post 82

I got a calico at at shelter four months ago. She is the most beautiful thing I have ever seen. I have four other cats and she gets along with them perfectly except when they are around me. She will have a growling and attack fit on the other cats. She is very attached to me and only me.

She will not let my husband, mom, or son pick her up. If they do she scratches them. I will not get rid of her, but she has got to stop scratching my family. Any suggestions?

Also, we named her NOLA for New Orleans, La. where we live and we got her the day before the Saints won the superbowl and she has the black and orange(gold.)

anon80168
Post 81

She was a gorgeous dilute calico, with the most unusual coat I have ever seen. She appeared on our back porch on winter day and set

about winning my heart with all her might. I thought that as beautiful and well-cared for as she appeared, she must live with someone, so I resisted petting or feeding her to encourage her to go home. She turned up almost every day for weeks.

I finally couldn't help myself and began petting and talking to her.

One day in February, I realized I hadn't seen her for several days. I decided she must have gone home. I was glad for that, but realized I missed her, too.

One day in early March, three days before my birthday, we discovered her living in our cellar. She had found a loose stone at the base of a wall and dug under it to move herself in. The evidence (a small nest and remains of a number of meals) indicated she had been living there all that time.

We moved her upstairs into the house and named her Hannah. We took her to the vet for examination and immunizations, and discovered she was only eight months old and 2-3 weeks pregnant with a litter she was physically too small to have.

To save her, we had her aborted and fixed and she became a member of the family.

Something I can't explain happened. Something about her reached into me and became part of me. It was almost like falling in love. She attached herself to me, and wouldn't let me out of her sight. She slept with me, greeted me at the door when I came home from work, and even learned how to open closed doors because she didn't like doors between us. I could not imagine my world without her.

For three years, the best parts of my day included holding and cuddling my loving little cat.

My wife and I separated. She fought dirty to keep me from taking Hannah with me. For three months, I missed my cat more than I can say. Then one day, my wife informed me she had taken Hannah to the local Humane Society and dumped her off. Hannah was killed three days later when she went un-adopted. My wife was careful not to tell me about it until after Hannah was dead. My heart broke into a million pieces. I cried for days.

That was almost two months ago. I have not spoken to my wife since, and because of what she did to my little cat, never will again. I cannot find forgiveness for her. I still cry when I think of my precious little cat. Someday, I'll have another cat, but none will ever fill that special place in my heart that Hannah held, and holds still.

anon64445
Post 80

To a marauding Malamute the other evening we lost our beloved "Fendi," who was patrolling in our yard. She fought valiantly through the night to survive, and it seemed to my wife and me that she rallied as much for us as for herself.

In the end, our vet called with the devastating news that she had been unable to battle back from her wounds.

We think of Fendi, and shall remember her always, as the knowing and responsive cat who gave to us, in a spiritual and emotional sense, much more than we could impart to her--even though my newly-retired wife was able to spend long, leisurely hours with our sweet girl, day and night, over the two years that we were privileged to have her here.

The "Fend" picked Susan out on one of her visits to the animal shelter, and our lives were changed dramatically for the better. I see now that her gifts to us are permanent; that she will stay in our hearts and prayers for all of remaining days.

I know that every pet is unique, and cherished by its human relatives. Fendi was one of a kind: loving, accepting, attentive and giving, without strings and without exception.

The hole in my being, left by her sudden and irreconcilable loss, is enlarged by the shame I feel that I didn't fully recognize her remarkable qualities while she was alive, and I sure didn't reciprocate with the constancy and care which she bestowed upon us.

Fendi, we shall love and think of you always. By giving us all you had, and having left us now (for a little while), you have enriched and altered our lives for evermore.

My heart aches, but it's full of newly-discovered love for my wife, family and friends. Because of you, and in your memory, I intend to pass it on.

anon64437
Post 79

We had the most beautiful and loving cuddle bug calico named Fendi. She was just a joy and taught us so many lessons. We found her at the Humane Society where she picked us. She had been there for two years and we knew she was ours.

On Wednesday a very large white dog I had never seen before attacked her in our yard while I was with her. She passed away at the vet. We are so heart broken.

What a wonderful beautiful little girl. It happened so fast. We are so grateful we got to be a part of her life, so surely enriched our beyond measure.

anon64113
Post 78

Just thought you'd enjoy an update on Leo (#50) and his new friend! Leo has grown into a beautiful 10 month old cat- very tall and long, but still as acrobatic and silly as a kitten!

We got him a laser light toy for Christmas, and he loves chasing it across the room and up the couch, and still doesn't understand why he can't grab it when it's "right there!" We also have two large goldfish on an antique dresser, and he keeps trying to catch them! He'll lie down next to the aquarium and try to grab them with his paws as they swim in front of his face. He has also tried to bite them, crashing his head into the glass! He really keeps us laughing!

Recently we got a friend to keep him company: a beautiful pastel calico we named Tefah. At first she hissed and spat at Leo, to tell him who was the boss! After a couple of days she finally let him play with her, and now they are buddies, chasing each other and delighting us with their antics.

Tefah has a definite calico personality: she loves to be petted and will rub against your leg, but she does not like to be picked up and held! She likes to cuddle in the towel shelf in our bathroom, and goes crazy chasing string. They both have very different personalities, but we love our calico cats! -earthangel

anon63900
Post 77

PJ, my pastel calico passed away four days ago while i was out of town. she was beautiful with long fluffy hair. she looked huge but it was all fur. we had her for 13 years. she belonged to the neighbors but when she was a year old she adopted us over them. she was very much a independent cat. didn't liked being picked up, not a lap cat, loved being outside, really had nothing to do with you and would only talk when you pet her. and boy did she have a loud voice. and would bite you when she wanted you to stop touching her.

as she got older she became more affectionate. would let me pet her more, would jump in my lap, and staid inside more often. she had feline leukemia and we were anticipating her passing. she will be missed.

anon63617
Post 76

My calico Tillie was found abandoned at six weeks old. I have always had a cat and/or dog and now I have the best of both worlds -- she has bitten the postman's ankle after ambushing him, she growls at cars passing and has even sent a fox running!

She takes my slipper behind the t.v. and chews it and has gone through two pairs of crocs! At mealtimes she sits slobbering like a Lab. wow! what an attitude!

she loves to play really rough, and is so acrobatic, almost another Bruce Lee. She hates soft petting likes to be patted roughly. Loving is in her time and at her say-so.

She loves digging for snowballs in the snow and plays snow-angels. I have never met a cat with such je ne sais quoi. She is now nearly two and has never used a litter tray and I've never had any mess -- she also prefers to drink straight from the tap and will 'ask' for a drink. I don't know what I'd do without her. She is such a comedian!

anon63377
Post 75

There is a beautiful calico cat that hangs out on the front porch- she's wild. She's very friendly and she let me pet her. I buy cat food for her and she licks her chops. She will never leave. For a wild cat, she's a nice pet.

anon61973
Post 74

We had a beautiful calico cat named Tigrita (little tiger in Spanish) for 17 years. I found her as an abandoned or lost (who knows) kitten at about six months of age. She got along with every person and pet we ever had.

She rode in the car pleasantly to go to the vet's and sat in my lap in the waiting room. She was a joy for so many years and truly the most beautiful cat we've had. We're on cat #8 right now. No, not all at one time! Just wanted to share thoughts about Tigrita.

anon60874
Post 73

I've always been particular to tabbies. I've had the most affectionate and loyal tabby cats ever and they've been part of my life since I was a young child. Then I happened across my first calico. She is the most stunningly beautiful cat I've ever seen. She is also the most protectively loyal cat I've had in my home.

On the downside, if I am in a bad mood and someone comes over, look out. You're going to get growled and hissed at. On the up side, she actually has licked my tears. It is difficult to explain to people that she is just being protective since I have a tabby who is, well, usual for a tabby and is just a cute, playful cat but my calico is the most affectionate and loyal cat that I have ever had in my home.

anon59865
Post 72

My husband found a new born kitten. First thing I found was it had seven toes on the left front foot and six on the right. It was white with calico markings, pastel rather than regular. Some of the markings have gray and black tiger stripe one is solid black and two have the buff tan color mixed in.

The last things to become apparent were the cat is long haired, his tail looks just like a raccoon's and also he is a male! Needless to say I think this little fellow is a very special cat, we've named him Lucky Number Slevin.

anon59557
Post 71

To #64. My baby was about three months old when we took her to the vet, she had a kind of bubble on her stomach too but it wasn't a big deal. Your kitty may just have an outie bellybutton, that's what Evvy has.

To #54. Calicoes can be a handful but you shouldn't get rid of her just because you're having a hard time with her behavior. As hard as it is to believe, cats can be trained and if you train her out of negative behavior she won't do it anymore.

I've actually found that if your cat or kitten is playing to hard and causing you damage if you use a very high pitch voice and say 'oww! Oww! Eeee!" or something along those lines in a high pitched tone they'll generally release you. Your kitten probably doesn't want to hurt you, you just don't have any fur to protect you like she does.

anon59496
Post 70

To #64 - take your cat to the vet. That could be a sign of the wet form of FIP. Our kitten just died of it and had a similar "bump".

anon59319
Post 69

Yes, naming calico cats (callie) gets kind of boring. I named mine callie because the name means beautiful. She is very beautiful and knows it. I love her with all my heart.

anon58561
Post 68

We found a calico in the park about two years ago. I already had two cats, and the calico hates my other cats. She attacks them every time they are all together. Any ideas on how to get everyone together? I've tried many things already but am open to any ideas.

anon57835
Post 67

I have a female calico. She is described as "the mean kitty" by family and friends. She doesn't like kids and really doesn't like to be bothered by people she is not very familiar with on most days. She is moody, I guess is the best way to put it.

We have had her since birth. She loves me and is in no way mean to me. She loves to sleep with me and my husband. She is a great cat as long as we don't have any visitors that day. She is absolutely beautiful.

anon56122
Post 66

I just got a calico kitten and it's a boy, so I guess I have a find. Are they smarter? Are they more valuable. He is fun and friendly.

anon55316
Post 65

This goes out to #54. Get your Calico a friend! I have had my calico, Bella, for a year and a half now and she was wild and crazy in her kitten days! She would hunch her back and attack my brother but now she has two sissys to keep her occupied.

They all play well together and each one has has a unique personality. Bella is very vocal, playful, loving and when we all go to sleep at night she curls up by my head and nurses off of my pinky finger to lull her to sleep. Lol.

anon54730
Post 64

My male Calico was born around July of 2009. he grew a bit but has been the size he was around three Months old. He has this sorta bubble on his belly also, and my mom is sort of worried about it, thinking it may be a hernia. I was just wondering if that is stunting his growth.

anon54372
Post 63

Calico and tortoiseshell cats are either very nice or very nasty. There is no in-between. Yes, it depends on how they were raised as kittens. I had a twin set of torties that were sweet, and I had a dilute calico years later. I fell in love with her the first time I set eyes on her. She came to me when I called her, and she responded to hand signals and

verbal commands. She was attacked by an animal of some kind and died. I will never forget her.

If you have small children, consider getting a patched tabby. They are also mostly female and have a better temperament. They're usually very gentle.

anon51433
Post 62

I have a calico named Callie Sue. she is very playful and just loves to eat. She loves to cuddle in the morning. She loves to bite toes.

anon48146
Post 61

I got a calico cat in the spring of 1997. i was 14. she was probably too young to leave her mother, she was so tiny and cute. I kept her in my room at first because she was so little. Eventually i let her roam, but i think she grew to believe i was her mother. She would meow every time i left for school. She would jump at my bedroom doorknob if i had the door shut. This cat does not leave my side. I'll never have another animal as loyal and lovable as her. I love her to death, she does have an attitude, she's not as wild and crazy as she used to be but she's still active and healthy. No name ever stuck with her so she's a 12 year old cat named "the kitten" lol.

anon48138
Post 60

I bought a calico kitten in 1996 from PAWS. I named her Abbey. She was a wonderful addition to our family. Over the years she became very close with my son. She would sit on his lap while he worked on the computer and sleep with him at night. In the kitchen her favorite spot to sleep was in her basket on top of my kitchen cabinets. She was extremely affectionate and never once was she mean. This past summer she developed lymphoma. We tried to extend her life as mush as possible by giving her chemo, which caused her to develop seizures. Sadly, we had to put our beloved cat, Abbey, to rest because she was in so much pain. Calicos are beautiful cats but their personality depends on how they are raised as kittens.

anon48061
Post 59

i have a beautiful, gorgeous dilute calico kitty i adopted as a stray at about 4 months. she is adorable, loving, smart, independent. beautiful green eyes that change to light blue. cats have their own personalities, like people or other animals. give your new friend lots of time. He needs time to adjust and get to know you. same to above. maybe the kitty was abused and that is why she is hiding so much. she will come out when she is ready. be patient. You won't regret it.

anon47216
Post 58

Hello calico cat lovers. I have lived with and loved cats for over 40 years. Max died in july. Tuffy and i were so lonely, i just recently adopted cookie, a three month old calico. My goodness -- I had no idea! She is the smartest cat i have ever known. It's like she's a five year old human! She does tricks. t's truly amazing. We love her already! She's a keeper!

anon46145
Post 57

we got our Miffy when she was 7-8 weeks old. we had lost our cat Sooty the previous year. we intended to get another black cat but when I saw this tiny bundle of multi-colored fur I fell in love. She is vrey clever, mischievous, affectionate but will still nip us if she is the wrong frame of mind. I firmly believe she gets PMT as when she is in season she is the cat from hell. all that said,she is the most loving cat we have had. She "talks" to us with little growls and miaows of differing tones and we are coming to almost understand what she is saying. we are hoping to let her have a litter of kittens before she is spayed, and keep one of the kittens as company for her. She is our beautiful little girl and we wouldn't trade her for anything.

anon45669
Post 56

I just lost a 26 year-old-dog. i happened to rescue a a true calico princess. Lucy does bite but she plays fetch and knows when to settle down. She's 7 months old. She's my calico princess.

anon43713
Post 55

A day ago I got a calico kitten and she is the best cat i have ever had! She is super smart,

very playful and just a overall good time!

my fiance loves to play video games and since we got the kitten he hasn't yet played any video games! we are in love with our little mellz. we named her mellz because she is so mellow and relaxed. she plays with us and sleeps on my head!

best idea we ever had to get this kitten!

anon41150
Post 54

I've had a calico kitten since 7 weeks of age and she's now about 4 months. After having two tabbies that were everything I could have wanted in a pet, this kitten is proving to be quite a challenge.

From what I've read and been told by my vet, calicos have a personality unto themselves and this has certainly been the case with this kitten.

I think she was separated from her mother/litter mates too early to have been socialized properly, which is not her fault really. She is especially mischievious and aggressive, exhibiting lots of inappropriate biting and scratching of the people in the house.

There are no other cats or dogs to keep her in check, so I'm hoping she settles down after being spayed or we may have to consider getting rid of her, which would be a shame.

For now, I am trying to be patient, show her lots of love and attention, but her aggression is difficult to handle. Any suggestions?

anon40539
Post 53

My son a few years ago found a kitten not even 24 hours old in the grass of a home he was moving. He called me at work told me he was bringing my home a kitten. I had to bottle feed her every two to four hours it was like having a child again. She is a calico and the most beautiful kitten I ever saw, so I kept her. We named her Ellie. Every time I picked her up to feed or just hold I would kiss her nose. She is the smartest cat I have ever raised. She comes to her name and to this day and she is 4 years old, when I ask for a kiss she puts her nose right to my mouth and I kiss it. She is the most playful of the the cats I care for.

anon39820
Post 52

After losing my beloved tabby and siamese within a few years of each other, I was ready for another relationship. I've always been a huge advocate of adopting adult cats, so when I heard a friend was fostering a calico mom and her litter for Whiskers, I put a bid in to adopt the mom. When I went to meet her, one of her calico kittens was very shy and reserved. I decided to give them both a home together. Best decision ever. The mom, Harper, is now 5 and the kitten, Boo, is 4. They cuddle, lick and love each other. I also must say they are the two most affectionate cats I've ever owned. Mom especially is a cuddler, loves affection. She sleeps by my head, and likes close contact. They are so sweet!

anon33439
Post 51

I also have a female calico cat which I found on the fields. She was probably abandoned but she adopted me very easily as she refused to leave our yard once we gave her food and a few hugs.

She has had a very strong personality since she was 2 months old, is stubborn and has a mind of her own. She does not like to be petted at all times, only when she wants and usually before and after going to sleep. She is also very jealous and when we thought of bringing a new kitten to keep her company, as soon as she came face to face with our new friend she made clear to him that he is not welcome in the family. She is very loving and prefers to sleep close to our feet so she can feel protected. Also she insists on sitting on our kitchen table while we prepare lunch or dinner and whatever we do we cannot persuade her to stop that habit.

She is also very good in communicating with us as she can show with different voices when she is hungry or when she wants her litter changed. She does not like closed doors in the house and her favorite game is hide and seek and us chasing her around the house. She is even calling us from the next room when she feels like playing.

earthangel73
Post 50

I just wondered if anyone else has a male calico cat? We have a male calico kitten who is about 11 weeks old, and he caused quite a stir at his first vet's appointment! The receptionist asked me the usual questions to fill out the paperwork, and when she asked "gender" I said male, and when she asked for his color, I said calico! Well, she looked at me like I was crazy or stupid and said flat out " Calico's are *not male*." So I said "well, he's white with orange and black splotches..." so she said "Let me see him." After a very long silence she said, "well, he's not a *real* calico, because he has stripes in the spots- so he's really a tabby." OK, whatever - since tabby is a breed and calico is a color! So when I get into the examining room the vet has the most puzzled look on his face as he looks over my little guy. He checked under his tail at least three times without saying anything- then finally says, "it's really unusual for a male to be colored like this" Then he checks one more time and says, "but he is a male!" So it's pretty neat to have such a special boy! We named him Leonidus after the movie "300" but when I call "LeoLeoLeo" he perks up his head and comes running! He's really funny and acrobatic when he plays, but when he's ready to rest he climbs up and snuggles right under my chin and purrs really loud!

So I was wondering if he will develop "normally" like other male cats. I've read that male calico's are the result of a genetic abnormality- having XXY chromosomes instead of just XY. Are they always sterile? Will he start spraying like a "normal" male as he gets older, even if he's kept inside? I would appreciate any information from anyone who has had a male calico. Are there any other problems he might have because he's a male calico? He is truly a gift to our family, so I want to be able to keep him healthy and strong for as many years as possible!

anon26288
Post 49

I have a Calico kitten that we rescued as a newborn. She is now almost 4 months old. I had *no* idea what I was in for.

"Milly" has a very distinct personality. She is stubborn, strong willed, independent, and very mischievous!! She pouts when she doesn't get her way, talks to me when she is hungry, or just glad to see me, and demands that I play with her when she is ready.

During play, she is an attention seeker, and she will do acrobats to chase the mouse on the string throughout the house or over the top of my bed. I think she is entertained by my laughter as much as I am entertained by her antics.

Though she frustrates me at times with her stubbornness, she makes me laugh and entertains me with her energy, acrobats, and quirky personality. And when *she* is ready, she can be very loving and cuddly. When she is ready for bed, she is always up for cuddling and purring, sleeping beside my pillow. On a Sunday afternoon, she also loves to cuddle. If I have time to sit down and watch a movie.

She doesn't "do" boundaries very well and we are still working on keeping her off of tables and countertops, etc. because her curiosity is insatiable for the most part! I tried bringing another kitten in for her companion, but ultimately could not keep the other kitten because Milly was much too rambunctious and the other kitten was so intimidated and frightened by her that he got depressed and retreated all the time. Milly could not understand his shyness and why he didn't want to play, but she was pretty aggressive and rough with him.

I may try again later, but for now, she will stay an "only child" for that reason! My vet said he had *never* seen a cat with such an "attitude". But that's what makes her unique and special!

mysticmelis
Post 48

I recently adopted a Calico in April of 2008 from Purrfect Pals. Gabby is almost five now, is extremely gentle and is an indoor only cat. She loves to have her belly rubbed and enjoys being brushed. I think she may have a little fetish! One of her favorite petings is while she is eating. She sort of demands you follow her to the food bowl and sit with her for a while.

We just recently moved in with a roommate who has a cat named Batman. So far Gabby has not shown any violence (except they hiss at each other) physically. They have been together for less than a week and already lie on a bed or hang out in the living room together.

Bbarnett37
Post 47

I had a male calico cat when I lived in Mexico. His name was Gato and he was really a beautiful cat. I wish I could have brought him back with me.

anon23791
Post 46

I have a 5 year old calico named Annabelle who is definitely full of attitude! She is a year older than our Golden Retriever, Bo, and she swats at him when he walks by, though he never does anything to her! I'm the only one she will follow around. She mostly avoids my dad and brother but will sometimes jump up on them to get a little petting out of them! She's glaring at me as I type this. She bites sometimes and will swat at me when I touch her at times, but I can't help but love her! I've never heard any rumors of calicoes being particularly mean or having a fighting tendency, but I know Annabelle could definitely perpetuate this myth!

anon21797
Post 44

My wife had a calico and she said it was combative and not friendly. I would like to get one, but she says a calico would fight with our two other cats. I told her I had never heard that calico cats liked to fight. Has anyone else heard of this? (It doesn't sound like it form the other comments I read here.)

Nel82
Post 43

A workmate gave me two kittens aged 6 wks, both had very bad conjunctivitis, one of them kits being a Calico. She was the tiniest of the two, she literally fit in the palm of my hand, and her eyes were glued shut. A week later they both had clear eyes, and my dear Calico had put on some weight.

She is such a "people" cat! She absolutely loves her dad, and will meow and meow until she can sit on someone. She doesn't like being picked up, but when she wants you she will come and sleep on you, no matter where you are or what you're doing, she's actually right next to me right now.

My kits are nearly 1 yr old now, both as happy as Larry, and I am even happier. I love them so much I would be lost without them. Big cheers to all you cat lovers!

There's no better present than the love of a cat.

rjccook
Post 42

Calico chose her name herself. I wanted to call her Halloween because she has a black mask. She would never answer to that name. One day I look her and said Calico Cat and she came over to me. She is an indoor/outdoor cat and will come to when I whistle for her like a dog would. She wakes me up with rubs on my face and kitty kissed and demands for attention

anon20197
Post 41

We have a calico cat, and a number of years back cat sat for a different calico cat. Both had a game they like to play where they wanted to be chased. When she wants to play this game, our current one will run away, then stop a few feet away if I don't follow until I chase her. After I get tired of chasing her, and ignore it, she will follow me around. Before I figured this game out, I thought she was upset with me.

anon17742
Post 40

I have two Calico cats that I rescued from the streets. Some cats will take longer to adjust to your home than others.

One thing about cats--they have come to you on their own terms. Never force an animal to come to you, that only causes them to be more afraid or standoffish. My first calico stayed in the basement for 3 weeks before she started peeking her head out. She slowly integrated in with the rest of the pets and came upstairs. She sleeps on my bed every night and brings me her favorite toy for me to throw and she fetches. All of my rescued animals have different personalities; however, they have all been wonderful. My calico "Ko Ko" does not like other cats but she is very affectionate to me. Don't give up on your cat, but give her space! She'll eventually come to you. Good Luck

ctwebb01
Post 39

How strange!! I thought all the wonderful little habits displayed by my calico Cleo were just her personality and now I find there is a world out there of timid, squeaky pusses full of attitude and fun. Cleo will rarely be cuddled but will sit for hours being scratched, having her ears pulled and big hard pats. She chats constantly, likes quiet time alone and hates strangers. She loves being in dark places but will creep out after dark to curl up happily on the bed. She lets me know she is hungry by running head long into my bedroom door. Whether this indicates she is intelligent Im not sure? Cleo also holds her tail extremely high almost curled over her back. Has anyone else found this with their Calicos? She is certainly a free but very lovable spirit.

anon14009
Post 38

I have a male calico!! Imagine my surprise when I found out how rare males are!! We feel very lucky indeed to have him. He is very affectionate. By the way...we named him Meatball!! LOL I think it's very fitting. :-P T.T.F.N. Ms. Kitty

anon13051
Post 37

I have a 3yr old calico named Maggie and does she ever have attitude. She has never been a "lovey" cat and comes to you when she wants attention. Maggie and my boyfriend have a love-hate relationship. Most of the time, Maggie has absolutely no time for him. But once in a while she comes looking for some love from her "Dad". Maggie is not the type of cat that I went looking for. I wanted a cat that would sit on my lap and be petted for hours on end. Even though Maggie is a "challenge" sometimes, I wouldn't trade her for the world. She gives me love on her terms and that is fine with me. The foot of the bed would be a lonely place without her!!

anon12351
Post 36

I have my new kitten and she is 3 weeks old. She was born in my barn! she is not like the other calicos i have had. She is loud and doesn't have a high pitched meow like many of them do. Will she get more spots as she gets older? She's so cute!

why does every1 name their calico cats Calli? doesn't it get old? Mines name is Lacy!!!

anon12254
Post 35

i once had a kitten that was very shy and timid. what i did was i locked her in the bathroom. when she meowed and sounded lonely i would go in and let her come to me. when she didn't i would go back out. keep doing this until she trusts you. kittens are insecure so a small room would feel good to her to hide in. don't get a cage. there would not be much room for her to move in and there would be no place for her to hide and feel safe.

anon11941
Post 34

From the Calico to my fellow readers. Calico's are definitely in a class of their own. I owned a female calico for 17 years and never knew her true age and didn't change her name as she wasn't a kitten when we got her. She came with the house...lol We bought the house and the cat kept coming back, the previous owners realized that the cats paw wasn't part of the purchase and sales agreement and asked if I wanted the cat. She was an indoor/outdoor cat who would sleep on my chest and bring me birds and mice!!! She would never allow me however to pick her up in my arms but she was very obedient. 2 years after she passed I was ready for another cat so I went to the animal rescue league to get a cat and my Mother stated, please see if you can get a calico. I laughed stating that I'm going to the animal rescue league, not sure about the choices and options. As I was in line for the registration desk, a couple were in front of me who were returning a kitten? They stated that their adult cat didn't get along with the kitten, it happened to be a female calico. I have now had my 2nd female calico cat for 12 years. She is in no shape, form or fashion my old obedient and loveable puss that I had prior for 17 years. Early on we realized that this couple lied to us regarding their adult cat not getting along with this kitten. Misty has turned out to be the cat from hell, as a kitten she attacked and stalked my mother...lol be careful of what you ask for. I had since moved out on my own and was requested to take the demon cat with me, she then started attacking me when we moved into a studio apt. I contacted the vet and they explained to me that maybe I need to give her some space, to which I replied that I am now living in a studio apt and she doesn't pay rent...lol

What people need to understand is that like people, animals have a personality all their own. They may look alike a.k.a. twins but...... After 12 years my cat is still skittish and jumps at the slightest sound, even though it's just me and her in now our home and I just say to her who did you think was coming out of the bedroom, she walks in front of me, follows me everywhere, get's in my way. Is unfriendly to my visitors, has since attacked my brother...lol good kitty... she's a mess but I am an animal lover and I too have gotten the silence meows and when cat's lick their lips and look at you they are responding to you. Watch a discovery channel episode on cat's, that is how they react. My cat doesn't meow per say, she brrrrrrrrr's if that makes any sense. She meow's if she wants something and then I tell her not to take that tone with me. I could go on forever, also I was led to believe that all calico's were females, they are actually an anomaly; go figure. I wouldn't trade her in for the world, would you trade in an autistic child? Oh and I have picked her up from day 1 and she's very comfortable in my arms. In closing don't judge a book by it's color my friends.

anon11074
Post 33

You have to think of the new cat as a new baby bought home for the first time. The baby needs time to adjust to their surroundings as well as learn to feel safe. Your kitty will come to you when she/he is ready & wants to be comforted or nurtured. Don't ever pull the kitty from the hiding spot, this will cause the kitty stress and prolong the trust relationship. I would suggest you leave little treats for the kitty in a place near you & take a brief rub when she/he appears.

It takes time for adjustment. Be patient, your kitty will become your baby in time. Enjoy watching the discovery process.

rjccook
Post 32

my calico chirps when she talks to me. She lets me know when she thinks it is time for me to go to bed. Her and her sibs run through the house creating havoc. I used to think that it was her brothers that started all the mischief until I saw her instigate the ruckus. When she saw me looking she got this innocent look on her face. I like it in the evening when her and her brothers lay on my couch all curled and sleeping then I know all is all right in the world

anon11008
Post 31

I have a calico or tortoiseshell cat and have had her for about three years. It took almost a year for her to really warm up to us. She was a rescue cat. She was prone to hiding often, but being patient and letting her come to us when she was ready, she is now a very lovable cat. It was actually when I when away for a weekend and left her with my husband for four days that when I came back she decided to pay attention to me. Now she owns me and insists I pay attention to her when she wants. She is a unique cat that I wouldn't trade for any other.

anon10947
Post 30

My calico is a little over a year old. Roxy is very independent and definitely a scaredy cat. She loves to sit on my husband's lap when she is ready, but I can't get her to be cuddly with me. We also have a 12 year old golden retriever that is with me all the time and I wonder if she senses that I am the dog's "territory". He is 90 pounds and she is only 7 pounds so his presence is possibly threatening to her, although she lays close to him when they are sleeping. He is always very gentle with her and has never shown any aggression towards her or anyone else for that matter. My problem with Roxy is that she jumps up on the counters, tables and other inappropriate places. We have used the water spray bottle, tin foil and have verbally chastised her for this, to no avail. Any ideas to get her to stop jumping on tables?

rjccook
Post 29

I have had a calico from birth and she still needs to get used to me even though Mom introduced us. She is the most independent creature I have ever had to own me. The turning point in our relationship came when she hurt her leg and was dependent on me for her care. Now she follows me like a little puppy dog all thru the house

anon8576
Post 28

Well you have been truly blessed. I myself have 3 beautiful girls. My oldest girl is a american shorthair. She is pure white, can't hear and was born sterile. My other two girl are sisters. One short, One longhaired. They are both different. Emma is my longhaired and she is very needy. MinnieMouse is the shorthaired. I call her the cat with the attitude. She can call you the worse names with the look on her face. She is also standoffish, she does not want to be held at all. I am so glad that I chose to keep the pair, they are the funniest cats I have ever owned. Both being calicos, their temperaments, their fussiness, attitudes and any other thing you might want to add to them they are. If you ever watched two grown men or boys do the tummy bump, well to watch these two running at each other and doing it, it's hilarious. Then they go about their business. They tattle on each other and when it's time to go to bed they come and get me to let me know they are tired. You see I have been a stand in mommy for them since they were 3 wks old. They also don't meow due to the fact that snow white doesn't, she can't heard. So they never learnt how. I could go on and on about my girls, but since you did get yours at an older age, you might want to consider getting another kitten so she's not alone. The new kitten may be a little bit needier and will teach her that it's okay that you will love her too. That's why I kept 2 girls verses 1 I didn't want them to be lonely. Best decision ever. They are both my life now. Best Wishes jipzie

anon8500
Post 27

I have a 7yr old calico and with no offense, calico's are considered the red-heads of the cat world. Know any red-heads? Every cat has a different personality and while my girl is absolutely lovely to look at, she is not a cat you just pick up and love. She comes to me on her own time (and only to me). There is certainly some strong sense of loyalty...I do not own her, she owns me.

Love your little lady, not to sound too strange, send her some mental images of being on your lap and held, and safe.

Animals fare some terrible abuse, more the reason to love her and protect her. If you need a cuddly, wait for your calico to grow up and then consider a new kitten. By this time she may even give you the affection you desire once there is a trusting bond. I agree with the previous author, do not remove her from a safe place, she will come to you. In fact, she may really love to sleep with you. let her get her bearings.

Best wishes and warm kitty thoughts.

anon8391
Post 26

I had the exact same situation 6 years ago, my calico was about 9 mo. old and abandoned. She was extremely shy... to the point where her foster mom didn't even bring her to the pet store to display. I actually found her picture on the internet and requested a one-on-one meeting. I fell for her, even if she hid like her tail was on fire. I took her home and she hid in the closed for a week ~ I had to put her food and litter box in there. I thought about "trading" her in on a younger kitten too. I didn't want a imaginary cat. But I toughed it out, and thank god. It took her about 2-3 months to trust me enough to hold her. I didn't force her; other than I would visit her in the closet a little each day. Finally, she became a very "normal" cat and part of my family that I would never part with. Hang in there, just like a kid ~ there's some work involved.

Cbowen289
Post 25

I adopted a 4 month old calico (Callie) about a week ago from a friend who found her and her sister when they were just a few weeks old. She bottle fed them until they were old enough to eat on their own. The first day she got there, we let her out of her carrier, and she ran into one of my spare bedrooms and hid under the couch, and there she stayed for hours! I thought I should let her stay there until she was ready to come out on her own, but as the hours passed, I thought it would be best to let her explore her new home. I tried to coax her out with canned cat food, but she wanted no part of it, so I gently removed her. I closed the doors to the bedrooms/bathrooms, and set her down. She went behind the couch in the living room for a few hours, but I continued to talk sweetly to her and called her name. Eventually she ventured out a few minutes at a time, until she was comfortable with her surroundings. That was 6 days ago. Now she is the queen of the house! She runs and plays until exhausted, then comes to snuggle with me for hours, purring and making biscuits on my stomach. Calicos seem to be shy at first, but once they realize you love them, and would never harm them, they are the best, most beautiful and vocal animals you could ever wish to be owned by! My advice is just to give your new friend time to adjust and don't give up on her. You won't regret it once she warms up! Good luck and write back to let us all know how she's doing!

anon7649
Post 24

I got a calico kitten when she was about 5 weeks old, she was too young to be separated from her mother but something happened to her mother and i took her home with me. I named her Sophia because she was so small {like Sophia on the Golden Girls}.

I have 2 dogs: a toy poodle i have had for 14 years and a weenie dog mix i rescued from the side of the road where she had been dumped.

Anyway Sophia instantly took to me and both dogs Peaches the poodle is standoffish but she is the queen of the house. But Sally took to her instantly and thinks sophia is her baby.

Sophia was at home from the start, never and an uncomfortable moment. I have never had a cat before but I am so glad I got her. she makes me smile. she is about 3 months old now and is in the playing stage and the pesky stage but she is a little dear. she is not a typical calico, she is black, orange, black with some brown. she immediately started showing me her belly and gives many kisses. she sleeps with me and my dogs. which most people would not recommend i am sure but we are all very happy. She knew what the litter box was from the start so no problems there. she has toys, toys, toys but her favorite is an empty dr. pepper twelve pack carton. I am so happy I got her. she makes me really happy

anon6480
Post 23

In October of 2006, I decided that after 26 years of not having a cat of my own, enough was enough. he had a cat already, named Oreo, but she hated my guts and was not sociable at all....and, she wasn't 'mine'. We talked about getting a kitten. He said that he had always wanted a small female calico cat. I didn't particularly care what the cat looked like, but I wanted to have a kitten. So I went around looking for kittens to adopt, and I came upon a small country veterinarian where two employees at newborn kittens ready to give away. They offered to bring pictures in the next day, so I came in to look at them.

Apparently, however, at the same hour that I came in looking for a kitten, someone brought in a kitten who was found in the middle of the road. The lady almost ran over her, but stopped in time, picked her up, and brought her to this vet.

So on November 10, when I came to look at these pictures, they offered me this lost little calico kitten who was about 8 weeks old whom they named Penelope. When they took her out of the cage, her tiny arms were stretched out and her toes and claws were splayed, she was so nervous and scared. They handed her to me, and we looked at each other...and I didn't know what came over me. (Much later, I realized that we were instantly bonding).

All the way home, she just sat there in the passenger seat on my coat and stared at me with these huge, innocent, questioning eyes, like she was asking, "Who are you, and where are we going?"

So I stopped at a pet store and bought her her own litter box and a couple of bowls and a little cushiony bed for her to sleep in...then I brought her home, set her down on the bed in our bedroom, and looked her square in the eyes and said, "Now this is your home."

Five minutes later, her little tail went up in the air - - - - and it hasn't come down since.

After a few days, we decided on a name for her: Shyla September Sprinkles (Shyla, because she was a bit shy, and because she 'looked' the name; September, her daddy named her because we believe she was born in that September; Sprinkles, because of her tortoise-ish coloring in some areas).

She's the apple of her daddy's eye - he went totally ga-ga over her. This poor frightened little waif was the cat of his dreams. He whispered to her, "That's the mommys. I the daddys." She has an amazing personality, she's so playful and friendly. In the morning, she would come and wake us up with kisses, and at night she would give us both lovins' before she went to sleep. From the very first night, she insisted on sleeping in bed with us though I tried to encourage her not to because I didn't want to accidentally kick her in my sleep or worse, roll over on her. I would put her in her own little bed, and she would immediately struggle her way up the side of the bed to come sleep with us. Sometimes, she would sleep between us with her head on the pillows like a little child.

I couldn't have this, so I brought her favorite blanket and put it at the foot of the bed. I trained her to sleep there. It's her "zug-zug" blanket. Every night since then, we go through this routine. She'll come up and "make biscuits" with her claws while nursing off of a small piece of the blanket and purring at the same time, sometimes staring at me. Then she walks up my body and sits down on my chest and purrs and purrs while I pet her. Then she goes and gets some crunchies in the corner of the bedroom. Then she comes up and zug-zugs again. Then she gives me mommylove again. Then she zug-zugs again. Then she washes herself and goes to sleep on her blanket at our feet.

She's been doing this now for well over a year and shows no signs of stopping. Some say she'll "grow out of it", but it doesn't bother me; and besides, I don't think I could live without our little routine.

She obeys commands (when she feels like it) and she answers questions with a "brrrRRRR!" She "trills" sort of when she talks. I've never heard a cat talk the way she does, and it's so cute to hear. She responds to gentle training (I trained her to use her litter box only as opposed to using Oreo's by putting her in the litter box every ten minutes or so, and after she went potty, and I praised her everytime she went in, and I haven't seen her use Oreo's litter box in 9 months now).

When she was a bit younger, she would hang upside down and swing like a monkey from the cat furniture. She would climb the Christmas tree and just sit there and go for a ride (our tree turns on a pedestal). She became my "study buddy"- I would be working on research papers or studying, and she would want to sit with me, so I put a blanket in my top inbasket, and thereafter when I'm at my desk, she comes up, walks all over my keyboard, then goes sleepies in her designated in-basket.

The one really REALLY amazing thing about her is how she looks you in the eye when you talk to her. To most animals, eye contact is a 'challenge'. Even Dr. Jamison was amazed at how she looks everyone in the eye that talks to her, and how she would turn and crane her head to watch me as I walked around the exam room table. Everyone thought I trained her to do that, but she did that on the way home.

I don't ever want another cat. She's the cat of a lifetime. She hasn't really grown to a 'full size cat', we think she was stunted a little bit, maybe from being the runt of the litter or not being able to nurse off her mother when she needed to. But that's what Don wants...she's EXACTLY what he always wanted. She prefers lots of water and crunchy food over wet food. Even when she was diagnosed with a heart murmur, she was the picture of health and vitality. She is SO SMART it's hard to describe some of the things that she does. God bless her, she's the most wonderful creature I've ever known. We were blessed when she came in to our lives.

Boosclma
Post 22

I have a female cali Diamond. She is pastel grey and just turned 7 months old and we brought her home at 5 weeks old. She's sweet and will sleep and play with me. We adopted another kitten last month and George is 6 months old. He's white with orange down his face. He has tiny eyes a constant smile and already over 7 pounds. I took them both last week to be spayed and neutered. Diamond has been hiding from strangers before I had her spayed. We hadn't had company while she was growing up. She comes to me and I'm sure she will come around to strangers. Its her choice if she doesn't want to. George, on the other hand, it as friendly as ever! My 2 senior cats 12 1/2 years old don't mind having them around and neither does my 14 year old bassett/beagle.

deedle254
Post 21

We adopted 2 cats from Furkids, Atlanta last 12/23. We think these are either sisters or mother/daughter. Ellie is a Calico and Cady a Tuxedo. They were rescued with 38 other cats from a hoarding house and they were the only two to survive. It was clear they were neglected and, we believe, probably abused. For the first several months, Ellie stayed under a loveseat in our den. She came out for meals, and litter box - but felt safe there. We let her go at her own pace. It has been almost a year, and she has become a very affectionate, loving, playful cat. She still has that "Garbo" in her - likes privacy, but she comes for affection now every day - many times. We play with a toy called Cat Dancer - we call it Mr Bug and she and her sister love it. Be patient - your cat will learn to trust you, and you will get lots of love.

anon5845
Post 20

Dear Calico new owner,

I have a 10 year old dilute calico I adopted as a kitten....she is the love of my life, however only devoted to me. When first adopted she hid just as you have talked of - however I let her be and she eventually came to trust me....she does not appear if other people are in the home and pretty much lives in her special private abodes (ie end of my bed/closet/or under bed....)

She is extremely intelligent and when I had an unexpected hospital stay of over 3 weeks she did allow my boyfriend to come into the house to feed her and clean litter....he respected her space and to this day he is the only person who she will come into the living room or out on the deck in front of....

So as other owners have said - give her time she has been through a lot - all cats have a delicate trust system and calicos moreso....

I can't imagine my life with a different cat, yours too will eventually give you back the affection you are looking for albeit in her own calico way...and trust me you will be smitten...

anon5308
Post 19

I am a foster mom for kittens and have had many kittens that at first are extremely scared from being abandoned and living on the streets. Once trick I've used is luring them out of hiding with chicken baby food in the little jars (make sure it is plain chicken with no onions - Gerber and Beechnut brands have it). Once she is eating happily out of a spoon close to you, try petting her at the same time...She will start associating you with this wonderful treat! Then you can slowly move the spoon closer to your body until she has to climb in your lap to get it. Even with feral kittens it hasn't taken longer that a few days for them to warm up to me and not only allow me to pet them but to start "asking" for attention. Good luck and please don't give up on her. In my experience it is these shy skittish kittens who end up to be the most affectionate and loving!

anon5225
Post 18

I took in two 6 week old orange tabby kittens last November and a few weeks later their calico mother. She wanted nothing to do with her babies and almost a year later, still is not affectionate with them or with my 15 year old cat. It's been tough but things are better. My calico is named Sandy and she is about 2 years old now. She has a great personality with people, just not with other cats! And her meow is loud and not squeaky at all; she's a street smart cat. lol

anon5196
Post 17

Do you have the litter in the box deep enough? Is the box in a "private" area? My little Pixie is just 16 wks old and the day I got her, I placed her right in her litter box as soon as we got into the house, before letting her go anywhere else...and she has used it regularly ever since....she "cover" to a fault!!

anon5039
Post 16

My calico cat goes outside the litter box and sometime she does not cover after she's done. help me

anon4671
Post 15

My beautiful little calico, Chocolate (so named because she was such a sweet kitten), adopted our family after someone threw her out a car window. We are dog people but just couldn't let her go to a shelter, so we kept her. 18 years later she died in my arms...the greatest, most independent, dog-hating cat with attitude plus I've ever known. You've heard of one man dogs? This was a one woman cat. She didn't want anyone to touch but me. She spent her whole life in dark corners, under the bed, in closets...until I went to sleep. Then she would come out, curl up beside me and purr all night. Calicos are highly independent and many of them are not interested in being petted or held. In spite of this, she turned out to be one of the most loving and low maintenance animals I've ever

owned. Or should I say, owned me. Doesn't sound like your calico is quite what you wanted. Send her to me but please don't give her to a shelter.

baileyanna
Post 14

I have 10 cats and just got a calico kitten. As with all new cats entering a "cat" home it takes the usual adjusting time but you shouldn't experience any loss to your relationship with your calico now. I have always had calicos and have never had a bad experience with any of them. I find them to be loving, playful, and as usual with an attitude. But don't most all cat's have the attitude they're so well known for and that is their independence and expectations of being waited on!!! But... to answer your question, I have also brought another cat into a calico's territory and other than the usual adjusting time to accept each other they are not really territorial creatures. That is more the canine nature.

anon4139
Post 13

I have a calico that is a few months over a year. I love her immensely. She definitely has attitude and can be somewhat obnoxious at times and she really makes me laugh. I'm glad to see that it seems common for Calico's to be so demanding for attention. I play with Dory every evening when I get home until she is tired. I feel like she needs a playmate and I've considered getting another cat (kitten) but not sure it will go over well. I don't want to ruin the relationship that Dory and I have. Anyone have any experience bringing in another cat to a Calico's territory?

anon4000
Post 12

my calico has a high squeak meow too. all calico i have seen or met have had a high pitch meow.. My calico talks and talks to me non-stop.. she is my baby and demands so much attention...she is also very smart.. she can open doors play dead fetch rollover, shake paw, cats are so smart.. My cali name is piper and she is now 5 years old. When i adopted her after paying 200 dollars.. i spent the next 6 months getting her healthy... in 5 years i have spent around 3000 on my calico.....but, she is healthy and very happy...

anon3864
Post 11

We have a calico cat that has a real squeaky voice, so we named her Squeeky. Sometimes she just opens her mouth and does not even make a sound. A friend of mine also has a calico, and surprisingly his cat's name is Squeeker for the same reason. I was just wondering how common this type of voice is among calicos?

anon3757
Post 10

i have a calico that was in a shelter much like your was "abandoned". we have lived together for two years and it took five to six months to build up trust with her. but once the trust is there you will never loose it with with her so long as you let her live on her terms. mine will talk to me the moment i enter the house and not stop till i have given a lot of attention to her, and i mean i can just talk to her and she will be happy and at times she wont let you pet her until your in bed and then she will come and see you for attention. and yes she has plenty of attitude and it is great. like the others have said let her come to you and if you sit on the floor with a brush and call her over in time she will come over for a petting. GOOD LUCK

anon3399
Post 9

Being abandoned will make her scared, give her time and you will be very happy. My Emilee is 7 mos old and was abused when she was a baby-cigarette burns. She is an incredible cat now, very loving and beautiful, her coloring is so pretty she is a gorgeous cat.

anon3286
Post 8

If your kitty is 7-12 months old and was abandoned, she is very much like our cat. For the first 4-6 weeks, she wouldn't come out. We didn't know where she hid, but we would wake up to find her food dish empty and her litter box full ;) She began coming out only at night when the kids were in bed, but she eventually fully integrated into the family. She's a fabulous cat! Please be patient. Take care of the basics (food, water, litter box) and give her time to get used to you and trust you. My guess is that you will be well-rewarded!

anon2848
Post 7

About two months ago we found a month and a half old Calico roaming the neighborhood. She was dirty and hungry and crying very loud. We already have a pair of cats, a mom and her 4 month old daughter. When we brought her in to the house she immediately went to the food and water dishes without any concern for the two older cats. They held her at bay for about a week until the older cats accepted her as part of the household and since then they play around and eat and sleep together. Give your cat time and lots of attention she will adapt.

anon2785
Post 6

I have a calico cat living in my garage. It is a male calico ^_^ well anyways, at first, it was very very shy and scared and unfriendly. It hid in our garage for at least 3 weeks before it let us actually touch it. But eventually, it started to let us pet it and then hold it and so on. It is now a very casual, friendly kitten and it just roams around our garage. I suggest you give your kitten more time. I used to not like the calico in my garage but now I am very close to it. He loves to play and is a funny little kitten.

anon1884
Post 4

Please be patient with your new kitten. We too have a new calico kitten who is about 4 months old. She has her times of hyper activity but then wears herself out and is then very affectionate. You need to earn her trust. Let her come to you, rather than the other way around. Try and play with your kitten as much as possible, they need stimulation.

Our cat, Chloe, is very intelligent, and now brings her favourite toy to us when she wants to play! Your cat will be a great pet and friend, but give her time and your patience.

anon1511
Post 3

Calicos can be slow to warm up, but once they do, it's very rewarding.

anon1480
Post 2

Your calico cat is very afraid. Something is scaring her. NEVER pull her out from her hiding place, that will make it worse and don't groom her until she is happy. She can take care of that for now. I think you would like a black lab, they are very affectionate and love to be around people.

Your cali cat takes a lot of understanding and patience before it can trust. That is probably why she was abandond. I wish her well and I hope you can find it in your heart to love her anyway.

Best of luck

from a cali owner

anon1364
Post 1

I bought a calico cat 3 weeks ago at a pet store. I paid $75. I have had her for 3 weeks. I gave her over 2 weeks to get used to her new home. I bought her at Pet Supplies. The manager did not know too much about her except that she was abanonded.

He thought she was 7-12 months old.

She has not been friendly. She hides under the couch and I have to pull her out. I pet her and groom her, but she wants to get away.

I am very sad because I wanted a cat to love. Any suggestions.

Should I get a kitten who would be friendly?

Any suggestions.

As I stated, I do not impose myself on her, but just let her do what she wants.

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