How Do Tabby Cats Get Their Stripes

How Do Tabby Cats Get Their Stripes?

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Last Updated on October 3, 2022 by Pauline G. Carter

A tabby is any domestic cat (Felis catus) with 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 separate species from other domesticated cats, but in fact they are not – their patterns are caused by a genetic mutation that has arisen multiple times in different regions and cultures. The most common theory as to how these markings came to be is that they provided some form of camouflage for the cats, helping them to blend in with their surroundings and avoid becoming prey.

How the Tabby Cat Got Its Stripes

There are a lot of theories out there about how tabby cats get their stripes. Some people think that the stripes are caused by a genetic mutation, while others believe that they’re the result of environmental factors, like diet or exposure to sunlight. However, the truth is that we don’t really know for sure how these beautiful cats get their unique markings.

One thing we do know is that all tabby cats have one thing in common: they have agouti hairs. Agouti hairs are basically hairs with multiple bands of color, which is what gives tabby cats their characteristic striped appearance. So whatever causes tabby cats to have agouti hairs, it’s likely responsible for their stripey coats!

Interestingly, some scientists believe that the agouti gene may be linked to certain health benefits in tabby cats. For example, studies have shown that agouti cats tend to be less prone to obesity and diabetes than non-agouti cats. So if you’re looking for a healthy feline friend, a tabby might just be the perfect choice!

Do Tabby Kittens Markings Change

Many people are interested in tabby kittens and their markings. Some people think that the markings on a tabby kitten’s fur can change over time, but this is not true. A tabby kitten’s markings are determined by its genes and will not change.

What Makes a Cat a Tabby?

There are many different types of cats, but one of the most popular is the tabby. Tabbies come in a variety of colors and patterns, but they all have one thing in common: stripes. The word “tabby” comes from the Latin word for “striped,” and that’s exactly what makes these cats so unique.

Most tabbies have what’s called an “M” on their forehead. This is caused by a genetic mutation that results in darker fur around the eyes, nose and mouth. It’s thought to be purely cosmetic and doesn’t affect the cat’s health in any way.

Tabbies come in both long-haired and short-haired varieties, and they can be either domestic or wild cats. The most well-known type of tabby is probably the Siamese, which has very distinct markings on its face, body and legs. Other popular types include the Bengal, Maine Coon and Abyssinian.

No matter what type of tabby you have, one thing is for sure: you’ve got a beautiful, unique cat that will bring you years of joy!

What Breed is a Striped Tabby Cat?

The term “tabby cat” actually refers to the coat pattern, not the breed. Any cat with a striped coat can be considered a tabby. However, there are certain breeds that are more likely to have this coat pattern, such as the Bengal and the Abyssinian.

What Two Breeds Make a Tabby Cat?

While the term “tabby cat” is most often used to describe any domestic cat with stripes, there are actually four different types of tabby cats. The four tabby patterns are mackerel, classic, ticked, and spotted. Mackerel tabbies have vertical stripes that run down their sides, much like a tiger.

Classic tabbies have large swirls on their sides and a distinctive “M” shape on their foreheads. Ticked tabbies have individual hairs that are striped with two colors. And finally, spotted tabbies have spots all over their bodies instead of stripes.

So what two breeds make a tabby cat? Any domestic cat can inherit one of the four tabby patterns. However, some breeds are more likely to have certain tabby patterns than others.

For example, the Sokoke breed is known for its unique ticked tabby pattern. And the Bengal breed is especially prone to developing the striking rosettes of the spotted tabby pattern.

Where Do Striped Cats Come From?

Striped cats are not a separate breed of cat, but rather, stripes can occur in many different breeds and even mixed-breed cats. The most popular striped cat is probably the Bengal, which is a mix of an Asian Leopard Cat and a domestic cat. Other popular striped breeds include the Abyssinian, Maine Coon, and tabby.

While some believe that stripes on a cat’s fur help camouflage them in the wild (making it easier for them to hunt), others believe that stripes may actually make cats more visible to predators. Regardless of their origin, we thinkstripes are pretty cool!


Most tabby cats have a coat with distinctive stripes, swirls, dots, lines or chevrons. The pattern is usually tabby but can also be mackerel (striped like a fish), classic (blotchy like a leopard) or spotted. There are many myths about how these markings come to be, but the truth is that they’re simply determined by genetics.

Tabby cats have been around for centuries and their unique patterning has long been admired. Today, there are even specific breeds of tabby cat, such as the Bengal and the Abyssinian. Whether you have a tabby cat or not, it’s clear that these beautiful animals are here to stay!

About Author (Pauline G. Carter)

Pauline G. Carter

Pauline G. Carter is a well-known pet blogger who has written about the world of pets for several years. She is passionate about pets, from cats and dogs to birds, reptiles, and poultry. Her blog, which is updated regularly, is filled with articles and guides on pet care, nutrition, and training. She also shares her experiences and observations on pet ownership, making her blog relatable and informative for pet lovers. She is a true animal advocate and is dedicated to promoting responsible pet ownership. Let’s Go …

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