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How Much do Calico Cats Cost

Calico is a breed of cat which is famous because of its beauty. The cat has a unique color pattern and fabulous fur that they retain regardless of their sex, breed, and age.  The only problem is obtaining the calico cat, especially the male, because it is rare.

Calicos cats cost anywhere between $400 and $2,000. The price depends on its age, sex, and breed. Male Calico cats are rarer and cost more. Because their color is related to the X chromosome, most Calico cats are female.

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Are calico cats worth the money?

Calico cats are worth money because they are beautiful and a specific cat breed. However, the sex and age of the cat will determine the cost.

For instance, you will pay more when it comes to a kitten than an adult cat. However, even if it is an adult or kitten, you will find a male calico cat to be more costly.

The average kitten calico cat prices include:

  • Female $200 to $1,500
  • Male $1,000 to $2,000

Average adult calico cats.

  • Female calico cat price-$700 to $1000
  • Male calico cat price-$750 to $1250.

Since it is easy to get female calico cats, their prices match that of the average price of the American Shorthair or Tabby cat.

How Much Are Male Calico Cats Worth

Since their color is related to the X chromosome, most Calico cats are females. Calico coats require two copies of this gene. It is rare to find a male cat with an X chromosome.

The result is a rare condition known as Klinefelter’s Syndrome. This is why you’ll rarely see an advertisement for a male Calico cat.

When you do find a male calico for sale, expect to pay between $1,000 to $2,000.

Cost of cat ownership

If you wish to own a calico cat, you will not incur a one-time cost. You will only pay the purchase or adoption fees and neutering or spraying fees once.

However, you will incur other costs so that you can enjoy living with your friend. Some of the costs include:

  • For adoption, you might incur $50, too, but it will cost you up to $2,000.
  • Neutering or spaying will range between $50 to $200.
  • General veterinary services: $250 per year.
  • Food: $20 per week
  • Other necessities include toys, beds, and cat litter: $50 per month
Spay/Neuter$300 to $500
Collar$10 to $15
Litter Box$18 to $85
Litter Scoop$10
Brush$8 to $15
Nail Clipper$7 to $20
Bed$20 to $40
Food Bowl$10
Ultrasound$300 to $350
X-ray$100 to $250
Teeth Cleaning$50 to $300
Scratching post$20 to $70
Cat Carrier$20 to $40
Cat Toys$10 to $50

What is a calico cat?

The term calico refers to fabric, but in the 1700s, the Americans refer to it as a printed design with small floral patterns. Therefore, people named the cats calico due to their fur patterns. The following cat breeds have the calico fur pattern:

  • Norwegian forest
  • Munchkin
  • Turkish Angora
  • Turkish Van
  • American curl
  • Japanese Bobtail
  • Exotic shorthair
  • British shorthair
  • Maine Coon
  • Persian
  • American shorthair
  • Domestic shorthair
  • Domestic longhair

The calico cat is not different from the ordinary cat with whom you might be interacting daily. The only difference lies in the fact that the calico is a rare cat breed, whereby the term calico is used to define the patterns and color of the cat’s fur. 

In particular, the calico cats are characterized by three colors. The color comprises a deep white color, including grey, blue, or blue, and heat colors such as peach, orange, brown, or red. Therefore, you can expect your cat to have a combination of white and one heat color, such as brown.

However, you should know that there are calico cats that have up to six colors. In reality, a cat must have a three-color combination so you can classify it under the calico category.

What is the personality of the Calico cats?

Calico is not a specific breed of cat but a domestic cat of any breed, provided that it has a tri-color coat. Since the calico does not belong to any particular breed, they do share personality traits. In most cases, they inherit the personality traits of their parents.

However, calico cats are typically compared to tortoiseshell cats in terms of personality. Most of them manifest a sassy attitude such as that of the tortie or tortoiseshell cats. The calico cats are also spunky, independent, like to have their own space, and cannot be affectionate and loving.

The calico cats might exhibit higher aggression because of their genes.

Types of calicos

The following are the main types of calicos.

Standard calico

Has a combination of orange, black, and white coloring. The cat will have white coats with big or small patches of black and orange.

Dilute calico

Is a cat with a combination of cream, light orange, charcoal grey, and white. In particular, the coat is primarily white with charcoal grey, light orange, and cream patches.


Refers to the mixture of tabby cats and calico cats. The cat has similar colors to that of the standard calico with tabby stripes.

Why are the male calico cats rare?

The males are rare because of genetics. You should know that a cat can only give birth to a tortoiseshell or calico pattern if it contains XX chromosomes and not the XY chromosomes found in males.

The cats are expected to have the X chromosomes because they are the ones that contribute to deep colors. Therefore, to categorize your cat as a male calico, it should have XXY chromones instead of the normal XY chromosome found in other male cat breeds. Arguably, a male cat should acquire a Y chromosome from the father and two X chromosomes from the mother to have XXY chromosomes.

The kitten inherits their colors from their mothers and not their fathers. Usually, the female cats have XX while males have XY chromosome pair.

The X chromosomes carry coat color genes. Therefore, the females inherit their calico coats from their fathers (XY) and mothers (XX).

To produce a tortoiseshell or calico pattern, one X chromosome should carry the orange gene while the other carries the black gene. In the case of the calico, both females and males can have a mutant gene of orange or black color because the X chromosomes control this gene.

The XXY condition is not inheritable. Therefore, if you are interested in breeding calico cats, the males cannot be worth your money because most of them are sterile.

Why a calico cat has a high probability of becoming a female?

Most calico cats are likely to be females because a cat should have three colors where X sex chromosomes contribute to the grey/black and orange/red.

Since the female has XX chromosome pair, it becomes easy for a cat to become female because it will have the associated colors.

The male has XY chromosomes meaning that it can have red or black color. In other words, a cat with such a color cannot be a calico.

Therefore, it becomes challenging to identify a male calico cat because rarely can you get a cat with XXY chromosomes.

Also, there is normally one male out of 1000 female cats, meaning that locating a make cat is approximately 0.03 percent. Not only that, if you get around 10,000 male cats, you might only get one fertile cat. The other cats will be sterile.

Can female calico cats become pregnant?

Female calico cats can get pregnant, but you cannot breed them. That is because they have a random calico coloration that cat breeders cannot breed. The males also reinforce such an idea because most of them are born sterile.

What is the lifespan of the male calico cat?

Currently, there are no accurate statistics that indicate the lifespan of the male calico cat. However, the lifespan of the males ranges above 15 years which is also the lifetime of a female cat. Naturally, male cats have XY sex chromosomes.

Therefore, the extra X chromosome which is added subjects the cat to a Klinefelter Syndrome condition. If you manage to buy a male calico cat, you should be ready to make frequent visits to your vet. That is because your male cat can easily be affected by a severe health issue if you do not take care of them due to their unique genes. In particular, the  Klinefelter Syndrome condition impacts the health of the cat such that it is exposed to health complications including:

  • Increased body mass that leads to diabetes, heart disease, and other diseases
  • Minimized bone mineral content results in a high risk of bone fractures.
  • Insulin resistance eventually contributes to diabetes.

Why do people buy the calico male despite its huge price?

Since it was first discovered in Egypt before it was exported to Asia and Europe, the Egyptians considered it the best guarders of pharaohs and saints. They believed that it protected people from dangers and unlucky.

Most people, especially from Japan, buy male calico cats because they associate them with happiness and good luck. In particular, people who own them expect that the cats will make their life happier by saving them from evil spirits. Consequently, sailors typically take the cats to curb unfortunate events that might occur in their journey.

In the United States, only the states of Maryland, Massachusetts, and Maine have official feline representatives. In particular, Maryland has officially declared the calico cats as its official state cat because of their white, black, and orange coats.

The cats have a similar coloring to the Baltimore oriole, the official state bird of Maryland. Surprisingly, even the baseball fans have adopted the specific color of the cat when ordering their uniforms.

The Japanese modeled their famous Beckoning cat after the calico. They usually place them at the entrances of businesses and homes to bring good luck. In the United States, people refer to calico cats as “money cats” since they contribute to the good fortunes of their owners.

The Irish believe that by rubbing the tail of the calico cat on a wart, you can cure it.