You can’t miss a gigantic, marvelous orange Maine Coon when one crosses your path; their long, vivid coat makes the conspicuous Maine Coon even more dramatic. Maine Coons come in a wide variety of colors and patterns, from midnight black to calico to…well…orange!
How Common is the Orange Maine Coon?
Orange Maine Coons are actually quite common, and are typically males. This is due to the fact that the orange gene is on the X chromosome. Because males only have one X chromosome, they are more likely to be completely orange if they inherit the gene, while females have two X chromosomes so they could take on the color that’s in the other X chromosome. Only about 1 out of 5 orange Maine Coons is a female.
It’s probably a good thing that the orange Maine Coon is so easy to find because they’re certainly one of the most popular colors for the breed.
Types of Orange Maine Coon
In the world of breeding there are official colors and patterns that the Maine Coon can have. What you and I would consider to be “orange” is actually called “red” by breed standards, and it can range from a very light, almost cream looking color to a dark, solid orange.
Some Maine Coons might seem like they have orange in them, but they’re in fact more of a ginger or brown color.
Perhaps the most easily recognizable orange Maine Coon is the red tabby. This color/pattern variation is typically a nearly solid red with the tabby strips in an even darker shade of orange. The red tabby can sometimes have splotches of white on the paws, face, chest, tail, etc.
The red silver variation is a bit less common and is a much lighter shade than that of the red tabby. The coloration is so light sometimes it can almost look cream. In these cases the red actually does look a bit more red than orange.
The term smoke in the breeding world is used to describe a phenomenon where the tips of the hair on a cat are white while the rest of the hair follicle is the actual color of the cat, oftentimes giving the coloration a smokey hue. One way to distinguish if a Maine Coon is red smoke is if their coat fades into a light, almost white color at times (but not because of a tabby pattern).
Do Orange Maine Coons Have A Distinct Personality?
It sometimes thought that the color of a cat plays a large role in determining their personality, but much of this is actually just a myth. It might just be that owners perceive their cats differently by their color (e.g. orange might equate to energetic while white might make them interpret a prissy attitude).
This is all largely untrue, though, and there is no evidence that shows an orange Maine Coon behaves any differently than the average Maine Coon.
Personality aside, one thing that is for sure unique about the orange Maine Coon is that you’ll definitely not miss them!