Animal Stories - Tortoise Shell Cats


Animal-World Information about: Tortoise Shell Cats

Tortoiseshell Cats have a beautiful tapestry of wonderful interweaving colors!
Latest Animal Stories
teresa w - 2013-01-17
It disturbed me to see the comment about torties having a tendency to not use a litter box. I have a tortoiseshell kitty who has used her litter box from Day 1. She does not like to share a box with my other cats, so I have three litter boxes to maintain, but she has never had an 'accident' to my knowledge. However, she definitely has some serious catittude. Lexi is a tiny cat, yet she rules the roost over her brother and my older female tabby. If they get out of line, she chases them and does her best to beat them up. For that matter, if she dislikes something that one of her people does, she'll chase us, too. We call her our bi-polar kitty. In spite of her occasional nuttiness, she is usually a complete sweetie and absolutely adores my husband.

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Joan - 2012-10-29
I have just had to euthanize my adorable tortie. I don't quite understand the postings. Yes her nickname was Her Royal Pussness, but she was a charming and sweet kitty. I have so missed her that I was thinking about trying to find another tortie and I am astonished to hear from so many that they are demanding, feisty and from what I read bossy and hot tempered. My little girl was anything but. Perhaps demanding, when she hissed (rarely) at me, she would turn her head away to do so. I found her in a poor shelter in Maine so she was named M E... (Emmy). She had intestinal problems, pink eye, ear mites and ringworm. She was cured of all of her ailments and lived with me for 15 years. Her affectionate behavior was totally captivating. Whenever there was a visitor to my apartment she came to say hello and to be petted. Her final months were plagued with Renal disease but she was always ready for affection. She submitted to her treatments and became more and more a lap cat as she grew older and then succumbed to the disease. I am just curious as to whether her disposition was unusual or am I likely to find a disgruntled kitty when I adopt another of these adorable creatures.

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  • Charlie Roche - 2012-10-30
    I am sorry - it is hard
  • David Brough - 2012-11-04
    Cats are individuals and most general descriptions are well... general. Im sure you could find another tortie that is as nice as your beloved Emmy. It sounds like she was a great friend, so sorry you lost her.
  • anna - 2012-11-16
    Joan, I am just as confused as you are about the generalizations made about the tortie personality. My tortie is nothing but sweet, loving, friendly, gentle in nature, and loves to be held. I volunteer at my local shelter and find the torties there to be very sweet as well. I am not seeing the 'tortitude' that is mentioned by many, and this is not based on only my own tortie, but many!
  • Jennifer - 2012-12-02
    I too own a tortie with what I call a very pleasing personality. You pretty much described her to a T. She is sweet and affectionate...always greets strangers who come to visit. She is very quite and rarely voices her opinion even when I may inadvertently forget to feed her for a few hours. I have owned over 60 cats in my lifetime and she is by far my favorite. I also have owned many calico's who do have very bitchy personalities...so maybe that is where the crossover comes from. I am sorry to here about your emmy...my kitty is fighting a fungus right now and I know she is uncomfortable...but fighting the good fight! I recently fostered a kitty that my sister found locally and was hit by a car. Such a different personality...but just like children your heart grows to accommodate a new baby into your life. I know you will find the right match...good luck! Jennifer
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Elizabeth - 2012-11-25
My family lost our calico of 11 years last fall, this time last year we went to a rescue that is made up of Foster cats. We were walking around And I was extremely close to the calico so I was not sure about a new cat.  We walked around and this little cat grabbed onto my jacket sleeve, at the time her name was Lou Lou. She is. Now named Teddy and a healthy 1 and a half old tortishell. I was wondering though my family has a 9 year old mutt like cat that has always been the head cat 'alpha ' but out of no where Teddy and him are avoiding each other and growling,hissing and chasing each other. They normally get along but now they both are acting off

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  • Charlie Roche - 2012-11-26
    I don't know but some questions.  Are both cats neutered/spayed?  If they are both males and not neutered could there be a female in heat around. 
  • Charlie Roche - 2012-11-26
    Thought of another thing also - cats are normally going to determine 'this is my chair' 'this is my territory' 'this is my side of the bed'   etc.  Your youngest is 1 1/2 years and so just getting sexually mature and independent wanting to show its independence.  They will figure it out but a few hissy fits might occur. 
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Christine - 2012-06-26
I have a torbie kittie in my home and I have tortie kitties that I feed in the neighborhood who have be abandoned or became strays. The one I feed is really in love with me when I show up she rubs on me and she lets me touch her. I had her fixed and her offspring a few years back...lots of kitties that I feed and water on a nightly basis...2.5-hours...on fb I have a group called 'Kittie Angel Network' 'Adopt-A-Spot'...Enjoy...

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  • jeryl edwards - 2012-09-29
    Hi, how u doing? I have a domestic shorthair tortoise shell. She is 2 years old and I found her on the street. She was small when I got her. I love her. She makes me happy. She got her way act just like a female she jump and be in window looking out if somthing happen. She come get me. She talk a little cause I talk to her everyday. Her name is Lucky that my baby. She like to run after everything like birds when they be in my window now she in door. Cat my name is Lynn I do what to here from you more about the cat.
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Nancy Thorgaard - 2012-01-16
My female tortie is now about 16 years old. She belonged to my brothers former wife since before they married. He was going to take it back to the animal shelter because the cat made so much noise! At the time I wondered how he could even fathom the idea? Well, I offered to take her instead. This cat, Isis, rarely shuts up! She joins in with human conversations as if she has something important to add. She greets everyone at the door, enthusiastically! We have seen her climb up the back of a step ladder to get into the face of whomever is standing on the ladder and see what was going on. She then lets out a loud, 'RAOWWW'. I wish I could read her mind. But, she won't be held and she never sleeps in our laps. I have heard this is typical. Another tortie owner asked me, 'Does she (Isis) have an attitude?'. I guess certain personality traits go along with that distinctive coat!

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  • Charlie Roche - 2012-01-16
    Don't you wish you could read their minds at times. You know they understand all that you say but sometimes they just aren't clear back.
  • Mark O - 2012-02-05
    Sounds awfully familiar! Mojo is about 10 years old, and a tortie with loads of brio and curiosity. I found her when I was looking for an older kitten to live alongside Commanche, our tabby. His sister had gone missing about 6 months before, and we wanted to find a cat that he would accept (he's a grumpy old so and so). I went to a local RSPCA cat rescue, and had gone all the way down the rows and decided the cats there were all too young or old for him to take to - when all of a sudden Mojo uncurled herself from under the older cat she was sharing a basket with, and stood up against the window of her cubicle to see what was going on. We became friends at that instant. When I collected her a week later, she didn't stop crying all the way home - 70 miles! Commanche and her got on fine, and she's been a wonderful cat to live with ever since. She always wants to know what's going on, and comes to help. - The first instance was when I was using an electric breaker in the garden to break up big lumps of concrete. Commanche went and hid, but she wouldn't go away - she watched me from start to finish, just a couple of yards away. She purrs constantly, hunts voraciously and talks to you all the time. The only time there's trouble is the annual inoculations - she climbs up my chest trying to get away from the vet with a 'how could you do this to me AGAIN?' look on her face. I don't see her so often as my partner and I split up a few years ago, but every time I see her we get back together again. Love her to bits.
  • Rebecca - 2012-06-08
    Hi, Nancy. Torties are notoriouse for their 'catitude.' The only reason that my Hekitty gets on my lap now is that her mother died when she was only 5 weeks old, and I took her then. She was eating well enough, but she 'rootled' in the crook of my arm, nuzzing and kneading, since I was the closest thing to 'Mom' she had left. And even after 4 years, I can NOT pick her up without a chase and battle, and I can't HOLD her. She gets in my lap to curl and nap, or to rootle, but she won't tolerate being confined in any way. I don't know if the snits and aloofness are actually linked to the color pattern, but I've heard lots of experienced cat people who seem to think so. And yes, they are VERY talkative, and into everything. Best advice, take it slow. She's a cranky old lady, set in her ways, who has had her whole life turned upside down. When you're sitting down, pat your tummy or legs to invite, and one day, she might just surprise you!
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linda - 2011-02-27
I wish i had an answer for my tortoiseshell aisha since 7/16/10 she has not stopped whining which was the day i put down my beautiful grey male alexei - i don't know what aisha wants i play with her and give her attention fresh food and water daily and really give her lots of love and yet she whines in the same monotone constantly - the truth is i am now getting daily headaches from this - any advice? Thanks

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  • Dorian - 2011-05-08
    I hope you've found an answer by now. Apparently, your cat is grieving (or was). The most obvious answer is to find her a new companion.
  • venissa pillay - 2011-07-09
    Hi Linda,
    Is your cat male or female? My cats name is Patches and she's a female. I had the same problem and recently found out from our vet if female she has to be spayed as torties ovulate for months at a time and whine and roll continuously. Hope that this helps you. Kind regards Venissa
  • Leigh White - 2011-11-07
    I had two cats that were very close, My Norwegian Forest Cat was basically Papa to my Siamese who was 5 years younger. When he died, she grieved also with a lot of calling and meowing. She still looks for him after 3 1/2 yrs. If you have objects that bear the scent of the cat who has gone, give that to the grieving one. It just takes a lot of time. My third cat does not seem to miss Clyde as much, but the remaining two don't like each other. Clyde was the one who made the trio work. Good luck-it is so hard to see them unhappy. (The third one is a dilute tortie, that is why I am on this site and saw your email.)
  • Peggy - 2012-01-11
    Your cat is crying for your other cat who died,and they hurt like you and I when we loose someone we love,the only way you can stop her from crying is to get another play mate for your cat.she will love you for it. God bless you.
  • Marie - 2012-04-27
    I have a tortoise shell cat 2 and mine whines all the time. I play with her, brush her and pet her so one day I had chocolate and she wanted some. I let her taste it and she loves it she takes 3 little peices and off she goes to sleep for 2 to 3 hours she only likes the dark chocolate. I do not know if it is harmful for her but it works
  • Charlie Roche - 2012-04-27
    Chocalate is toxic for cats and can cause death. You might want to read this article. CHOCALATE and CATS
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Jessica K. - 2012-04-25
@ Wendy Marlowe, why don't you try and re-home your rare male tortie to a good home rather than selling him? There are too many homeless and neglected felines in this country (and world). You should be more concerned with him going to a loving, giving and able pet parent than making a profit off of his rarity and life that you didn't create. I have been blessed with four beautifully healthy felines that chose me to be their caretaker, one of which is a bossy tortie. :) So, put his well being over any money you could make off of him and his rarity.

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CT - 2011-07-21
My fiance's cat died the last Friday in April. Two weeks later, we had friends over for dinner and had our patio door open as it was a beautiful evening. I saw a black flash go past, thinking it was my little Yorkie. My fiance turned, looked and wondered where this bold cat had come from. Instead of getting startled and fleeing, she spotted the dog food bowl and started to gorge herself. She had no interest in leaving after she'd eaten a bowl full of food and acted just like she'd just returned from a long vacation. My fiance used to be a vet tech and was convinced the cat was pregnant, maybe 2-3 weeks along.

The next morning, we thought we'd see if she wanted back out of the house. She would go out a few feet, then turn around and come back in. She seemed far too loving and sweet and well socialized to be a complete stray so we put an ad on craigslist and I set off to the store to buy a litter box, litter and food. We tried to get her to do her potty business outside before I left, but she wouldn't. In the meantime, she pooped behind the toilet, then jumped into the bath tub and peed down the drain...honest! She's obviously a bright cat. When I returned home, she jumped right into the litter box and did her thing.

Long story short, someone else posted an ad a few blocks away about another young pregnant tortie. I'd guess they were sisters and abandoned by someone who either moved or something happened to their owner. I now have "Chloe" and seven healthy 18 day old kittens. We have two red tabbies, two medium grays, and three black kittens. I'm curious if any of them will exhibit the tortie color traits. Does anyone know if torties are all black when they are born, taking on color later?

Before my fiance's cat died (she was 18) we'd talked about getting two kittens at some point down the road after she was gone. We just didn't expect that the maker of the kittens would adopt us. I'm glad she did, she's sweet, very very smart, loves my Yorkie, and she's the first cat I've ever owned. She's perfect in my mind.

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  • Dorothye - 2011-11-12
    I have a female Tortie. She belonged to my companion that I lived with for 4 years. He passed away in May and she is having a hard time adjusting to life without him. She is very tempermental and does not like anyone. She will actually growl like a dog. You cannot pet her unless she makes the move to let you. She will put out claws and actually bite you. She has been with me over 4 years now and I cant give her to anyone because they would not understand her temperment and would probably think she is crazy or weird and put her down. By the way, her name is Krazy Kat.
  • Carol Conger - 2011-12-09
    Torties are born with their adult pattern right down to the skin cells from which the hairs grow! I have had 2 wonderful torties in my life and just lost my Lila this past August. It is interesting to read about the coat pattern, which appears on females due to the genetics. The males are red/orange. Google it!
  • Carol Conger - 2011-12-09
    Torties are born with their adult pattern right down to the skin cells from which the hairs grow! I have had 2 wonderful torties in my life and just lost my Lila this past August. It is interesting to read about the coat pattern, which appears on females due to the genetics. The males are red/orange. Google it!
  • Peggy - 2012-01-11
    Yes turties are born long black hair then after 7 days they get there colores.
  • wendy marlowe - 2012-04-25
    I have a male tortoiseshell, calico who got my female orange tabby pregnant, shes fixed now. I'd like to sell him. We can only have 1 cat, and we had our baby girl to long to let her go. I'd like to take bids on him, i can post pictures soon.
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Evelyne - 2010-11-19
We have a male tortoiseshell and he is dark grey with peach/beige patches. I would like to know how rare this cat is? He has no white on him. Could someone please let me know the rarity of this cat.

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  • Leola White - 2011-11-07
    My cat Harliquin is colored like yours-they are called dilute torties, and are a little rarer. I had a dark tortie as a child, and it was a thrill to get another one. She had a loving nature, and many kooky habits and rituals. She tends to be overweight, but we are working on that. I really love how she adores me, and just wants to be in on any activity. She has a very soft meow, sometimes only a squeak. My other cat is a Balinese/Himalayan mix, and she would love to be friends with her, but Sheba is a snob to her. I guess cats are like humans, you can't just assume friendship by proximity. Good luck with your tortie-they are the best!
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Nicole - 2011-09-13
I was told by my Vet that Tort cats were the most hyper cats and that they will pretty much pick and choose what they like and what they don't and pray that they like you! My cat is still a baby. My daughter named her Prinesses and she is so smart when a baby or small child come near her she automatcially puts her claws in and she won't scratch or bite any one unless you rough house with her!

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  • brit - 2011-10-19
    We got the cutest most adorable little tortoise shell kitten for free outside of Walmart
    I didn't want anymore animals but as soon as I looked into her eyes,I was in love! She has a bobbed tail n tiffs on her ears and the cutest little fat round belly and the sweetest meow! I just adore her! We have had her about a month and she has made herself quite at hone. She is best friends with my little chiuhaua it's so cute to watch them together. She is so smart and so vocal she has to be a part of everything and always has something to say! She thinks she is a human I'm pretty sure. She fits in our family perfect like she's always been here. I just dote on her,even when she's onery. My husband says 'man,that little kitten sure has you wrapped around her paw and she knows it'!
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