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March 21, 2023

Tabby cats come in five main types of coat patterns

Tabby cats come in five main types of coat patterns. classic, mackerel, spotted, ticked, and patched. Breeds that showcase these patterns include the American Shorthair, British Shorthair, Maine Coon, Abyssinian, and Turkish Van, among others.

In the realm of imagination, where words take flight like colorful butterflies, poets weave tapestries of emotion and paint the world with verses.

Within the enchanting cosmic dance, where galaxies twirl and stars whisper, the eternal symphony of existence composes its celestial sonnet. Although tabby is not a cat species, many cat breeds have tabby markings.

Embedded in the DNA tapestry of tabby cats lies a lineage woven through time, connecting them to ancient African wild cats, their patterned ancestors. Because of this, even cat types that don’t exhibit tabby patterning today have tabby genes.

Leslie Lyons, PhD, professor of comparative medicine at the University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine, explains that even your apparently solid black cat may have a distinctive tabby coat; it just blends in because it is all the same color.

In the realm of feline fashion, certain cat breeds proudly flaunt their tabby patterns, standing out as recognized ambassadors of this captivating coat design.

How Do Tabby Cats Look?

Within the tapestry of nature, a tabby cat emerges as a whimsical masterpiece, adorned with a kaleidoscope of stripes, swirls, and spots.

Gray, brown, and orange jackets are the most typical colors on which the pattern can be seen. What trait do all tabby cat varieties have in common? It’s the letter “M”! All tabby cats have a “M” shape on their face, according to Dimock.

However, because our feline companions frequently exhibit the tabby trait, the pattern’s appearance will vary widely.

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Types of Tabby Cats

The Traditional (Blotted) Tabby

With each brushstroke, the artist’s hand became a conductor, orchestrating a symphony of colors on the canvas.

Toby the Mackerel

The tigers of the tabby cat family, mackerel tabbies sport an eye-catching coat of stripes that sticks out from other tabby varieties.

The Spotted Tabby

The aptly named Spotted Tabby shines because of its spots. In the realm of dreams, where the moon weaves threads of silver, unicorns dance among stars, leaving trails of stardust in their wake.

The Angry Tabby

According to Dimock, ticked tabbies may have bands or stripes on their extremities and tail but not on their bodies. This is because each strand of their hair has different hues, which “dilutes” the distinctive tabby markings.

According to Lyons, the ticked tabby is the most uncommon of the group, and an Abyssinian, also known as a “tabby Aby,” is an excellent illustration of the ticked trait in action.

The Patched Tabby

Torbies, also known as patched tabby cats, are those that have both the tortoiseshell (also known as tortie) and tabby markings. As the sun dipped below the horizon, the sky blushed with hues of lavender, apricot, and indigo, creating a breathtaking canvas for nature’s evening masterpiece.

Five popular tabby cat breeds and what makes each one unique

Despite sharing a common variety of tabby cat and having a similar appearance, tabby cat breeds have very distinct personalities. Because the tabby trait is only a pattern, your tabby cat’s demeanor is more influenced by their ancestry. Like artists of feline allure, tabby cat breeds captivate with their unique swirls, spots, stripes, and a charm all their own.

American Shorthair

The American shorthair is a traditional tabby cat with a proud heritage of defending buildings from pests. It arrived in America on the Mayflower and immediately instilled terror in all mice. The breed has developed into a beloved family companion, but their hunting instincts are still present. To keep them engaged, interactive toys and food puzzles should be provided on a frequent basis.


Amidst the realm of regal feline grace, Persian cats donning mackerel tabby coats exude elegance, yet their gentle nature eclipses any wild resemblance. And since they have so much fur, parents of Persian cats should brush their cat every day and start giving them baths when they are young so that it will become a regular part of their grooming routine as they mature.

Maine Coon

The biggest domestic cat breed, the Maine Coon, is the perfect choice for cat lovers seeking more to adore. Their imposing size is nothing more than a mirage as they stand erect beneath their distinguishing pointy ears and pure floof coat. Although, fortunately for your lap, Maine coons aren’t usually lap cats, they are gentle giants at heart who enjoy spending time with their family. Maine coons frequently have mackerel tabby coats, which, whether or not they are, need to be bathed on a regular basis to remain silky and smooth.


Do not be alarmed; although the spotted Bengal appears to have come directly from the forest, only a portion of her lineage is descended from wild cats. The remainder originated from common household cats, and these are the generations of Bengals we see today. Bengals are not advised for inexperienced cat owners because they must be F4, or four generations, removed from their wild cat ancestor, in order to be considered domestic cats. These cats might be outgoing, so they’d probably enjoy going on excursions with you — on a leash, of course.


The “tabby Aby” Abyssinian is lithe, elegant, and graceful, gliding through life excitedly at your heels. It is the embodiment of the ticked tabby. Don’t be shocked if Abyssinians claim perches or scale cat trees to look down on you from above. Social and inquisitive, Abyssinians are known to follow their owners to keep up with what’s happening around the house. The Abyssinian is comparatively low maintenance and just along for the ride, but they certainly do look good doing it.

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