Looking for tabby cats for adoption near you? Adopt a pre-loved tabby cat directly from the owner through the Cat Rehoming Network! You will learn all about your potential new pussycat including it’s history, personality, health status, likes, dislikes, care and feeding routine and much more.
Most Tabby Cats for adoption through the Cat Rehoming Network are completely healthy, fixed, up to date on shots, and come with all or most of the supplies it will need. And by adopting a Tabby cat from our organization, you help keep family pets out of shelters and rescues, allowing these organizations to help abandoned, abused and neglected homeless tabby cats find homes as well.
Questions about our stress-free home to home Tabby cat adoptions process? Contact us today.
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Tabby Cat Appearance
A tabby is any domestic cat that has a coat featuring distinctive stripes, dots, lines or swirling patterns, usually together with a mark resembling an ‘M’ on its forehead. Tabbies are sometimes erroneously assumed to be a cat breed.
In fact, the tabby pattern is found in many breeds, and is a genetic landrace common among the general mixed-breed population. The tabby pattern is a naturally occurring feature that may be related to the coloration of the domestic cat’s direct ancestor, the African wildcat (Felis lybica lybica), which — along with the European wildcat (Felis silvestris silvestris) and Asiatic wildcat (Felis lybica ornata) — has a similar coloration.
A genetic study found five genetic clusters from tabbies to be ancestral to wildcats of various parts of the world.
Tabby Cat Personality
Tabby cats are varied in personality and behavior characteristics. While some Tabby cats have a laid back, playful, trusting and affectionate nature, others may be more skittish, guarded and independent in their personality. The cats’ early socializationfe can affect a Tabby’s personality, as can heredity.
The best way of ensuring you are adopting a laid back and affectionate Tabby cat is to adopt an adult cat that already displays these aspects of it’s character.
Tabby Cat Types
There are four tabby patterns that have been shown to be genetically distinct: Mackerel, Classic, spotted, and ticked.
A fifth includes tabby as part of another basic color pattern. The “patched” tabby is a calico or tortoiseshell cat with tabby patches (also known as “caliby” and “torbie”, respectively).
All those patterns have been observed in random-bred populations. Several additional patterns are found in specific breeds. A modified Classic tabby is found in the Sokoke breed. Some are due to the interaction of wild and domestic genes. Rosetted and marbled patterns are found in the Bengal breed.
Mackerel Tabby Cat
The mackerel tabby pattern has vertical, gently curving stripes on the side of the body. The stripes are narrow and may be continuous or broken into bars and spots on the flanks and stomach. An “M” shape appears on the forehead along with dark lines across the cat’s cheeks to the corners of its eyes. Mackerels are also called ‘fishbone tabbies’, probably because they are named after the mackerel fish. Mackerel is the most common tabby pattern.
Classic Tabby Cat
The Classic (also known as “Blotched” or “Marbled”) tabby tends to have a pattern of dark browns, ochres and black but also occurs in grey. Classic tabbies have the “M” pattern on their foreheads but the body markings have a whirled or swirled pattern (often called a “bullseye”) on the cat’s sides. There is also a light colored “butterfly” pattern on the shoulders and three thin stripes (the center stripe is dark) running along its spine. Like the Mackerel tabby, Classic tabbies have dark bars on the legs, tail, and cheeks.
Ticked Tabby Cat
The ticked (or stripeless) tabby pattern produces agouti hairs, hairs with distinct bands of color on them, breaking up the tabby patterning into a “salt-and-pepper” or “sand” like appearance. Residual ghost striping or “barring” can often be seen on the lower legs, face, and belly and sometimes at the tail tip, as well as a long dark line running along the back, usually in the spine.
Spotted Tabby Cat
The Spotted tabby is a modifier that breaks up the Mackerel tabby pattern so that the stripes appear as spots. Similarly, the stripes of the Classic tabby pattern may be broken into larger spots. Both large spot and small spot patterns can be seen in the Australian Mist, Bengal, Egyptian Mau, Maine Coon, and Ocicat breeds.