What Makes a Tabby?

Per­haps one of the most ubiq­ui­tous of do­mes­ti­cated cats, the ori­gin of what makes a tabby might not be what you think!


Of­ten though to be a breed on their own, Tabby cats are in fact not a breed of cat; rather, Tabby cats are cat­e­gorised as such for a ge­netic trait that af­fects the colour pat­tern of their coats!

Tabby cats can come in all sorts of colours, but the most com­mon would be black, grey, brown and or­ange. What dis­tin­guishes them from their fel­low cats, how­ever, is their unique coat pat­terns. Gen­er­ally, their pat­terns can be cat­e­gorised into five types: Blotched, mack­erel, ticked, spot­ted and patched.

Blotched or “clas­sic” Tabby cats (also known as mar­ble Tabby cats) have bold, swirling pat­terns along their bod­ies and are likely the most com­mon Tabby around. Mack­erel Tabby cats have nar­row stripes run­ning down the sides of their bod­ies, much like a tiger’s coat. As the name sug­gests, spot­ted Tab­bies have spots all over their bod­ies (both big and small), while ticked Tab­bies have agouti hairs (in­di­vid­ual hairs

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