Identifying Cat Coat Type by Color

There are plenty of cats to love and adore. Some prefer one breed over the other, some likes playful cats than calmer ones and some adores calicos more than tabbies. Now calicos and tabbies aren’t cat breeds but they are cat coat types. In this article, we’ll help cat lovers identify the differences of cats according to cat coat type by color.

cat coat type by color


Self-coloured cats are those with only one solid coat color. There are no patches, big or small, of any kind and that’s a self-coloured cat. It’s fairly easy to identify this type of cat as it has just one rule: one color only.

cat coat type by color


A piebald cat or a bicolor cat is a cat with two colors. When a cat has white fur combined with a fur of some other color, whether a pure black color or a tabby one, you’ve got a piebald kitty. There are variations to piebald cats too, which a lot of people also refer to tuxedo cats.

  • Magpie – white fur with random splashes of color throughout the body
  • Harlequin – mostly white fur with random spotting and a solid coloured tail
  • Cap and Saddle – white fur with a coloured head and saddle on the back
  • Mask and mantle – white fur with a solid color masking the head and back
  • Van – white fur with colour in-between ears and a coloured tail
  • Tuxedo – less than 40% of fur is white and the rest is coloured

cat coat type by color


One of the most common cat coat types. These are cats that come in different colors, orange, gray etc. that have markings or white stripes. All tabbies have the M marking on their forehead, dubbing it as “mark of a true tabby.” Like piebald cats, there are also variations in this cat coat type.

  • Classic – coat with blotches of colors that create swirly patterns
  • Mackerel – coats with vertical stripes running from the spine to the stomach,
  • Spotted – has spot-like marks, resembling a cheetah
  • Ticked/Agouti – doesn’t have the easily visible marks of a tabby, but has the facial markings of a tabby. Agouti also pertains to hair or fur with more than one color.
  • Patched – a combination of tortoiseshell and tabby look

cat coat type by color



This cat coat type is when a cat’s fur is darker on the face, paws and tail. Supposedly, this colour point coats are due to feline genes that cause the cold parts of a cat’s body to darken. This cat coat type isn’t always visible when a cat is born but it develops as the cat grows and is constantly exposed to cold environment.

cat coat type by color


This cat coat type is a mix of orange/red and black. The appearance of the coat usually looks mottled. Tortoiseshell cats are usually referred to as “torties” for short. A mixture of a tabby and tortoiseshell is known as “torbie” which is also the same as patched tabbies. Torties have dilute torties in which the cat’s coat color appears faded.

cat coat type by color


Cats with the tri-coloured cat coat type are referred to as calicos. This coat’s color usually has orange/red or ginger plus white and black. Unlike torties that usually have mottled coat color, calicos have more clear color separation in their coats. But like torties, calicos have dilute calicos in which their fur appears bluish or grayish instead of black and creamish for orange.

These are the different types of cat coat colors and the terms or names to identify them. Which one is your cat? Or which one is your favorite cat coat type? Whatever your preference is, we hope you’re now able to identify our feline friends according to their coat types.

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