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Is it true that male calico's are worth some money and...

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Question by kk_baby_gurl
Submitted on 5/3/2004
Related FAQ: rec.pets.cats: Torties, Calicos and Tricolor Cats FAQ
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   Is it true that male calico's are worth some money and are males rare

Answer by KT
Submitted on 2/10/2005
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Please do not be mistaken by people trying to sell you a male "calico". Male calico's do not actually exist genetically. Cat coat colour is coated for by the X chromosome and since males are XY they only inherit the X chromosome from their mother. The calico colouring is due to the expression of of the trait on both X's. It just can't happen.  


Answer by tionne
Submitted on 3/27/2005
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yes they are about worth 2 grand


Answer by J-MoNEY
Submitted on 5/2/2005
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Well, yes because obviously if the males are rare to come by then yeah they are going to be worth alot more money. This is really a dumb question, because if you really think about it then you could have answered it on your own.


Answer by ms_mcgraw
Submitted on 5/24/2005
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Male calicos are extremely rare because of their genetic make-up. They easily go for well over a thousand dollars, & have beautiful markings!!


Answer by ms_mcgraw
Submitted on 5/24/2005
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Very occasionally, the tortoiseshell "male" is not male at all. It is genetically a female cat which, due to hormonal problems during embryo development, has developed the external characteristics of a male cat. This is the normal condition in female hyenas where the clitoris is elongated to form a pseudo-phallus and there is also a false scrotum. It is occasionally been reported in other animals which appear to be hermaphrodite, intersex or are masculinised females (genetic females which look like males). Depending on the cause, the false scrotum may contain fatty tissue or ovarian tissue. This may explain those cases of tortoiseshell "males" which act like females - they are genetically female with an external male appearance. These gender anomalies are discussed in more detail in a later section.

The case of Skipper (Hokkaido, northern Japan) was documented by zoologist Jeremy Angel in the 1980s. Skipper originally came from Sapporo. Angel noted that perhaps one in every one or two hundred tortoiseshells is a tomcat and that these were once prized by superstitious boat owners. In 1981, at one year and three months old, Skipper was described as looking un-tomcat-like. In head shape and general conformation, he more closely resembled a female. His genitalia were unambiguously male. He was calico with clearly defined patches of orange and black and unusually for the Japanese cats of the area, he had a straight tail, not a bobtail. His mother was known to be a longhaired calico, but his father was not known. Skipper's character was described as exceptionally calm and friendly and extremely fastidious in toilet habits. He did not spray and did not show any interest when his mother came into oestrus. When introduced to other cats, including full toms, in an enclosed colony, Skipper was curious, nonchalant and non-aggressive - and again, did not spray.

It was noted that other tomcats treated him as a female and attempted to mount him, This was initially thought to be dominance behaviour towards the newcomer. However, Skipper remained attractive to several of the tomcats and had no objection to being mounted. On some occasions he appeared to enjoy this attention and remained crouched and receptive, even after the other tomcat had dismounted. He also adopted the lordosis position and chirruped to attract his suitors. During summer, he was mounted frequently enough that his neck became callused (common in highly active oestrus females). Skipper's attitude to females was very different. By the time he was almost 2 years old, he still did not spray and still showed no interest in mating with females. On occasion he was aggressive towards females and frequently fought with them. Tomcats do not normally fight with females, particularly with oestrus females although females will fight among themselves. In this respect, Skipper's behaviour was female. He was always the instigator of any fight.

In 1982, Skipper showed signs of male behaviour. He stopped picking fights with females and began to show sexual interest in them. He also began to spray. Compared to a normal tomcat, his spraying and his sexual behaviour were half-hearted. Angel isolated Skipper with an oestrus female. Although not an enthusiastic suitor, Skipper mated her three times, but failed to impregnate her. Angel had intended to mate Skipper with other females to determine whether the cat was fertile, but an epidemic of cat flu claimed Skipper as one of its victims. Angel concluded that either Skipper was a slow starter or that he possessed an additional X chromosome which feminized his behaviour, this being the prevalent theory at that time.

Because, at different times, Skipper showed both female and male behaviour, he was possibly an XX/XY chimaera (external male genitalia but some internal structures, including his brain, being genetically female and causing female behaviour). A post mortem, which might have solved the puzzle, was conducted when Skipper died. Although his condition was assumed to be due to an extra X chromosome (XXY, Klinefelter Syndrome), this does not normally result in female behaviour in phenotypical male. However feminisation was once believed to be the norm and in 1997 a cat owner stated "Most calico toms are born infertile with a single testicle. We are currently in the process of having a calico tom checked to see if he is fertile. If he is he will have some sperm 'banked' before being neutered. He is white, tan/orange tabby patches, and light to dark grey spots (and a few stripes)." The only male calico encountered by his/her vet was a long time ago and very obviously a genetic error, since the cat was sterile and had numerous other problems.

In a comparable case, Rachel E Gibson wrote in 1997 of a male calico which only mated with a very sexually aggressive females and which aligned himself with the females more than the males. The other males treated him like a female so he may not have many male hormones. His behaviour corresponded with the theory of the time that XXY made tortie tomcats feminine in their behaviour. Boo, another calico male, was also believed to be sexually confused because of his extra chromosome. He attempted to mate with both females and males and also tried to nurse kittens or carry them around like a mother cat. Boo continued to spray after being neutered and was described as somewhat fat, not uncommon in XXY cats.


Answer by ali
Submitted on 6/3/2005
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yes, male calicos can sell for at least 5,000 dollars. They are very very rare.


Answer by techhead
Submitted on 7/9/2005
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No, male calico's are not worth any money. It was a rumor that started in England


Answer by Ali
Submitted on 7/22/2005
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No, actually the male calicos are steril and cannot reproduce... but then again mabey the person selling the calico will get luck and find a buyer thet will pay big mula for it. Just to get a little mor detailed, All calico cats have the X X chromosomes, so just like in humans wala you gotta girl. The males on the other hand almost always have  X X Y chromosomes whih means the cat is unable to reproduce. Now if you do have a male calico cat go to your vet to check if it's steril or not, because if it isnt steril then YES you do have a VERY RARE cat thats worth lots of money.


Answer by howie
Submitted on 2/10/2006
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yes because i was reading in a news paper and there was an article a french aristocrat payed 2 million dollars for one male calico kitten\


Answer by Gemmi673
Submitted on 5/11/2006
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I was trying to find out the same thing. I just read that males are rare but are usually sterile. I was told yesterday that the females were worth some money. My cat had six kittens two weeks ago and two are calico. Both female.


Answer by gina
Submitted on 8/1/2006
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Answer by Cae
Submitted on 9/11/2006
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yes... its almost impossible to find a true male calico because of genetics... i had one and a man offered me $50,000 for it... so if you have one... do research and sale it... mine unfortunately died before I could sale it...


Answer by Cessie
Submitted on 11/17/2006
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Male calico cats are very rare.  Approximately 1 in 3000 calico cats are male!

Let's go back to genetics.  A female has XX genes, and a male has XY.  For a cat to be calico, one X gene must be the orange gene, and one X gene must be a non-orange gene (usually black).  So therefore, the 2 X genes necessary would make the calico cat a female.

Male calicos are made when there's a genetic anomaly, an extra gene - XXY.  This would give the cat the 2 different X color genes, plus a Y gene which makes the cat a male.

Male calicos cannot be bred, as it's a genetic "defect" - and, male calicos are usually sterile and cannot reproduce.

As for their monetary value, I am sure that due to their rarity, it's always a possibility that there are people who would sell a male calico for more, just to make a buck.  


Answer by Kat
Submitted on 5/28/2007
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Yes, it is very very rare to ever find a male calico or tortishell. There's just something in the genes, whatever makes them that color makes them female.


Answer by Liza
Submitted on 6/16/2007
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I'm really not sure. I've been trying to find out the same thing since I recently got one...I never knew that male calicos were rare until a few people saw him and told me.


Answer by Lyndee
Submitted on 7/2/2007
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I have 5 kittens that are small but all born from a calico male they were all dark at birth but are coloring at about 9 weeks. all are persion. Maybe 1 male.


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