What is a tortoiseshell cat?

ANSWER: A cat with a coat that is made up of red (orange) and black patches. The cat is nearly always female because the genes for red and black fur are carried on the X chromosome. A tortoiseshell cat can be a random bred cat, a feral cat or a purebred cat. It describes a coat type not a ca breed. There are no breeds that are just have tortoiseshell coats. There are breeds that are just grey, however.



"Calico cat" is a USA term meaning a tortoiseshell and white cat. Calico cats are also female. The most popular coat type for the Japanese bobtail cat is a calico or a tri-color cat: orange, black and white.

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