Maryland's State Cat: the Calico

Photograph by Beverly Valcovic
[Calico Cat]

Both the House of Delegates and the Maryland Senate voted to designate the Calico Cat as Maryland's State Cat. Governor Glendening signed the bill and it became law. The law went into effect on October 1, 2001.

The Calico cat was chosen as Maryland's State Cat because of the colors. They are the colors of Maryland's flag and founding families--red, black and white.

[Calico Cat]
Calico is a color combination on a cat, not a breed of cat. They are tricolored (3-colored) cats. A true tricolored cat must have The most common color combination in calicos is white, red (orange), and black. A calico has a significant amount of white fur with two other colors broken up into distinct patches.

Tricolors are primarily female cats. The red (or orange) color gene can only be carried on the X (female) chromosome. About 1 in 3,000 tricolors is a male and only about 1 in 10,000 of these males is fertile.

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© Copyright April 20, 2001, Office of the Secretary of State.
Last Modified October 04, 2002 .