Did you know there are up to 200 Siberian cat colors and patterns, ranging from light to dark tones? These beautiful cats originated in Russia’s cold weather climate, meaning that colors come in very thick coats.
Stick around to find out the most popular cat colors for this adventurous and affectionate cat breed, as well as the rare shades and patterns. Personally, I have a black Siberian cat called Alexei, who is absolutely stunning.
If you’re thinking of getting an Alexei for yourself or a Siberian cat in a different coat color, read this guide to help you find the perfect Siberian cat pet for you.
Siberian Cat Coat
To understand the Siberian coat, you must first learn a bit about its history. The first known reference to Siberian cats and their colors is from 1000 AD. Traditionally they roamed in the wild forests of Siberia. That is why they are now referred to as forest cats.
The Siberian is a forest cat alongside Norwegian Forest and Maine Coons. They are also one of the oldest cat breeds that are “natural” or were not humanely developed by crossing with other breeds.
This lack of cross-breeding, plus their past in Russia, means that they are generally robust and healthy cats who tend to experience minimal health problems.
Those harsh Siberian winters also result in this breed developing a long triple-layer fur coat. Not only does it keep them warm, but it’s also waterproof. And unlike many other cat breeds, Siberians tend to quite like water.
The thickness ranges depending on the seasons, but it’s typically long and covers the cat’s paw pads for extra warmth. This means they’ll need to be brushed a few times weekly to avoid knots and matting. When the warmer months come around, you’ll have to brush them more often as they begin to shed.
Siberian Cat Colors and Their Personalities
A Siberian cat’s personality is very affectionate, calm, and adventurous. So you’ll have no problem integrating them into your household. And while they like to cuddle, they also need some alone time as they’re quite independent.
Many people buy or adopt Serbian cats based on their favorite coat colors or patterns. But, what cat breed you choose for your household may only be a part of the tough decision-making. Some studies like this one suggest that coat colors and your cat’s personality may be linked.
The study found that black and white Siberian cats are more friendly and tolerant toward their owners. While gray cats are more likely to be aloof and shy. Orange cats, however, tend to be more social and calm.
Of course, the results are inconclusive for now, but this may be another thing to consider before integrating these loveable breeds into your family.
Siberian Cat Colors: What are the Choices?
Siberian cats come in all types of color combinations and can be deep and dramatic (like my own black Siberian cat Alexei) or light and colorful. The most common colors include orange, gray, black, blue, and white.
There are three major types of Siberian cat color and pattern types. The first and most common is tabby. The second is full color or ‘selfs.’ The third is the Neva Masquerade Siberian cats or color pointed coats.
Solids or “Selfs” Siberian Cats
A solid or “self” Siberian cat has no pattern showing – just a solid color. All Siberian cats have a tabby design genetically, but sometimes it is overlaid by a solid color, so it will appear to be just one flat color.
When the silver gene is added to solids, the color becomes smoke. Siberian cats’ most common solid colors are black, blue, red, and white.
Black Siberian Cat
It may be a bit tricky to find a Siberian cat that’s exclusively black as its color is due to a recessive mutated gene. As a result, not many of these jet-black coat-colored kitties are found in the wild. Instead, it is a more common find in domesticated cats. And it is a very sought-after color.
Orange Siberian Cat
Orange cats are quite common, so it’s no surprise that it is also a standard Siberian cat color. Their hair’s ginger hue contains the same pigment that many red-haired humans have — pheomelanin.
Because of this gene, there isn’t a “standard” shade of orange. So, orange cats can be lighter or darker depending on their parents’ genes.
However, while it is a common coat color, it can be a bit tricky to find solid orange cats as orange is usually one of the colors in mixed patterns. That said, it’s not impossible to find.
Red Siberian Cat
While many confuse red Serbians with orange coats, their color is actually more vibrant and often a mix of red and brown. This unique coat color is due to feline melanism, which causes a darker coat.
While you can get a solid red Siberian Cat, a unique color variation is the red-silver Siberian cat, a beautiful tabby coat pattern. A cat with this coat will be mainly white with splotches of red in their fur. It is gorgeous, but consider yourself lucky if you find one, as they aren’t as common.
Blue Siberian Cat
This coat color is possible due to the diluted gene in animals that cause a lighter color. While similar to gray and silver, this coat color is slightly different because it has a metallic and cold sheen when viewed in the sun.
Blue Siberian Cats are relatively common, so you should have no problem picking one up from a breeder. Typically blue cats’ chests have a darker blue hue than the rest of their body.
Bicolor or White Siberian Cats
Bicolor means your Siberian cat’s coat is mostly white. This means your Siberian cat will have some areas of white on their coat which could be anywhere but are often on its chest and paws.
These Siberian cat bi-colors, alongside the white, are often blue, brown, or silver. Of course, you can’t forget the tell-tale inverted “V” on their faces.
Siberian Cat Patterns
The pattern types of Siberian cats vary a lot. They can range from the classic blotched style pattern to striped mackerel to a mix of stripes and spots to shaded tabby designs.
Tabby Siberian Cat
Siberian tabby cats can come in a range of colors, although the mackerel and classic patterns are more common. Tabby Siberian cats have white chins, which can appear to extend to their throats and chests in lighter colors, but these are not technically white markings. Here are a few of the more common tabby color variations.
Brown or Black Siberian Cat Tabbies
These are the most classic tabby colors for Siberian cats. These tabby Siberian cats are mostly shades of brown rather than much black, but they can be referred to as black Siberian cat tabbies.
Siberian tabby cats can come in virtually any shade of brown, from pale gold to dark chocolate brown. These felines also tend to have more of a wild/forest natural look.
Silver Tabby Siberian Cats
There is an extensive range of options for silver tabby Siberian cats. Most silver Siberian cats are black or black-silver, or brown. These cats have black tips on primarily white fur, which gives a shimmery effect. These silver Siberian cats can vary from very dark chocolate brown to an ashen shade of brown.
All silver tabby Siberian cats have a white fur undercoat. The “color” only occurs further down their fur, which gives the silvery effect. There are also red silvers, blue silvers, and cream silvers.
Golden Siberian Cats
As there is a tabby silver Siberian cat, there are also tabby golden Siberian cats. These Siberian cats tend to be less common. They also usually have a brighter shade of gold and black paws. Some tabby-brown Siberian cats can appear quite golden in color.
Tortoiseshell Siberian Cat
The tortoiseshell or“tortie” pattern is classified as a mix of two coat colors — usually black and orange. However, it is possible for other color combinations that include variations of cream, yellow, brown, or silver.
Fun fact: Almost all tortoiseshell cats, regardless of breed, are female! If they are male, they are almost sure to be sterile.
Calico Siberian Cat
Similar to the tortoiseshell pattern, the calico form is a variety of colors. But, unlike the tortoiseshell, this pattern is due to a mixture of three colors — usually black, white, and orange.
According to the CFA, calico Siberians should have white feet, legs, chest, and a muzzle. They should also have an inverted ‘V’ blaze on their face. They also recognize a diluted calico pattern with lighter colors.
As mentioned, calico cats have personality traits separate from their Siberian breed. They are often bolder and more loyal than your typical Serbian cat.
And, as another cute bonus from this cat, they are considered lucky cats in many East Asian countries.
Another pattern option is the “Neva Masquerade,” as mentioned above. Neva Masquerade Siberian cats only have color on their faces, legs, and tails. Their body will be pale, and they will also have blue eyes.
If the silver gene is present, your Siberian may be shaded, or its color may become smoky.
Siberian Cat Eyes
Siberian cat eye colors range from green to copper. All Siberian kittens have blue eyes, but only the Neva Masquerade style will have blue eyes upon maturity. Siberian cat eyes tend to be slightly oval and set quite wide apart. Some Siberian cats even have different colored eyes.
FAQs About Siberian Cat Colors
Here are the most pressing questions new cat owners often have about Siberian cat coat colors.
What is the Rarest Siberian Cat Color?
When you search online for a Siberian cat, white cats usually pop up. However, white Siberian cats are actually incredibly rare to find.
On the side of the spectrum, the most common color for Siberian cat coats is brown mackerel tabby with patches of white intermixed.
What Colors Are Siberian Kittens?
Typically, Serbian kittens don’t look any different from birth than what they’d look like as an adult cat. However, the color of Siberian cats can change over time. This tends to take the form of fading or of markings becoming less distinct.
Are Silver Siberian Cats Rare?
Yes. Silver Siberian cats are among the rarest coat colors for this breed. But it’s not the rarest coat color for this breed, as white takes the cake in that regard.
How Do I Know If My Cat Is a Siberian Cat?
The first thing that will indicate that you have a Siberian cat on your hands is its extremely thick coat. This breed has three layers of fur covering their paw pads to keep them warm during the frigid Russian winters.
These are also very large cats. Siberians are powerful cats whose hindquarters tend to be longer than their front legs, allowing them to jump very high. They can weigh anything between nine (4 kg) to 22 lbs (9 kgs), depending on their gender.
The last thing to look for is their tufted ears and green or gold eyes. While they can have blue or two different colored eyes, it is rare.
In Summary: Siberian Colors
As you can see, Siberian cat types come in a wide range of colors and patterns.
I have a solid Siberian black cat, Alexei. However, his underbelly is more smoke, and his coat may change over time to become more chocolate brown. Now that I have him, I don’t care what color he is. I love him so much!
No matter how expensive your cat or what color your Siberian is, it will most likely be an affectionate and loving pet.
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