People-oriented, crazy, greedy and fiery – red cats are said to be quite a few things. We look at the secret of these red house cats and what makes them so unique.

Every cat owner who shares life with a red cat knows about its quirks and little quirks. Red cats are considered bundles of energy, very intelligent and cuddly. And since genius and madness are often close together, red cats are also said to have a certain craziness and aggressiveness.

Red Cats are 80% males

The gene for the red coat color is inherited dominantly via the X chromosome, of which the female cat carries two (XX) and the male cat one (XY).

Red males always develop if the mother cat carries the red base color. The coat color of the father does not play a role.

Red females are only produced if the mother cat and the father carry the red base color. Since this occurs much more rarely than in the first case, about 80 percent of the red cats are male and 20 percent female.

Red Cats are never really uniform in color

Every red cat has a pattern or ghost markings of the “tabby” brand – there are no truly uniform red cats. The tabby pattern comes in four different variations:

  • tabby (mackerel)
  • tabby (classic tabby)
  • spotted
  • ticked
Mackerel Tabby cat
Mackerel Tabby cat

Red Cats and red-haired people have one thing in common

The pigment phaeomelanin is responsible for the red coat color, which can occur in all gradations. It dominates in red cats and human redheads and provides for the red fur or hair.

Red cats have freckles

In red cats, small black spots on the nose, the paws or the mucous membranes can be seen especially often. These pigment spots occur when a lot of melanin is deposited. They are pretty common in red cats, but the reason for this still needs to be determined.

The black spots are harmless in themselves and can become more in the course of a cat’s life. However, if they feel raised, you should consult a veterinarian because cats can also get skin cancer.

dark red haired cat
A fluffy orange tabby domestic longhair cat with freckles on its nose

Red Cats Are Especially Sociable

Gary Weitzmann, veterinarian and president of the San Diego Humane Society, emphasized the sociability of red cats in an interview with National Geographic. He based this impression on the numerous red cats and the anecdotes he witnessed during his professional life.

Red Cats Find a New Home More Quickly

More than anecdotal value is offered by a study by the University of California, Berkeley, on the subject of coat color and character of cats. Here, however, the focus was on the human gaze: the 189 participants were asked to assess the personality of cats with different coat colors. Red cats came off particularly well – they were perceived as friendly and people-oriented.

This subjective assessment makes the chance that a red cat will be placed in the shelter much higher.

Red cats are Legendary

There are all kinds of myths and legends surrounding red cats. For example, according to Christian belief, the characteristic “M,” which red cats bear on their foreheads due to their tabby pattern, is said to have originated from a blessing of Mary, the mother of Jesus.

A red cat warmed and soothed baby Jesus in the manger, and in gratitude, Mary blessed the cat by leaving her initial on its forehead.

A similar tale is found in Islam: during a prayer, the Prophet Mohammed was so engrossed that he did not notice a poisonous snake sneaking up on him. Instead, a red cat alerted him to the snake, and in gratitude, the Prophet blessed his savior with his initial.

red male cat.

Red Cats are movie and TV stars

Red cats are real screen heroes, and who could blame them? Their charm enchants everyone. Here’s a small selection of red, purring media stars:

  • Garfield
  • Crookshanks (Harry Potter)
  • Orangey (Breakfast at Tiffany’s)
  • Jones (Alien – The Creepy Creature From A Strange World)
  • Spot (Star Trek – The Next Generation)
  • Thomas O’Malley (Aristocats)
  • Buttercup (The Panem Tributes)
  • Bob (Bob the Stray)

Red Cats are greedy

Red cats seem to have a particularly pronounced appetite if the numerous reports of cat owners are to be believed. Red cats like to overeat and find food in the most impossible places – sometimes even things that are not at all suitable for cats or even poisonous.

This is also accompanied by the assumption that red cats tend to be overweight. However, there is no scientific proof of this prejudice.

Red cats are simply unique

Each cat has an individual personality, which is formed according to genetic influences and external environmental influences. For example, the coat color of red cats is not directly related to their personality – at least, this has yet to be scientifically proven.

Read also about the Most Beautiful Cat Breeds with Blue Eyes here!

Categories: BlogsCats


Marco Heitner

Hello, my Name is Marco. My family has had pets since I can remember. Today we have a large aquarium and, since recently, a four-month old Labrador. I am the owner of this website, and it is my great pleasure to provide helpful knowledge about pets. Our team is constantly working hard to publish well-researched reports here.


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