Animal Stories - Tortoise Shell Cats

Animal-World Information about: Tortoise Shell Cats

Tortoiseshell Cats have a beautiful tapestry of wonderful interweaving colors!
Latest Animal Stories
Kimberly - 2013-03-10
I have a Tortie from a rescue shelter, maybe 3 years old. She has taken to me quite well and has no desire to explore the apartment. She has claimed a fake fur blanket as 'her space' at the foot of my bed. She tries to be vocal with me as if we have our own private conversations. She used her food dishes and litter box without incident until we added another rescue cat to our family. She refuses to eat out of the same dishes or use the same litter box anymore, she won't even leave her blanket or her bed, growls, hisses and postures towards the happy go lucky kitty (less than a year old). Anyone know if this is the way it's going to be or if time might smooth things out? My Tortie, black and variegated tan, named Peka, seems rather possessive of me and behaves as a no nonsense, 'I Own the left side of the bed and my person'. I know a lot of this is still primary posturing as Peka has been here a month and the silly kitty has been here only a few days...they are both female, Peka is spayed and comes from a violent history, I'm sure trust will take time. Any advice out there?

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  • Jasmine Brough Hinesley - 2013-03-10
    I have had so many cats and introduced so many cats of different ages to each other. I would definitely say give it some time. As your one cat is an adult, she may need more time to become 'friends' or at the very least tolerate your new, younger cat. Sometimes they will become best of friends and start hanging out together. I would guess that your worst case scenario would be that they may not be friends, but they will probably learn to live with each other from a distance. I would give them separate food, water and litter boxes so that they feel like they have their own space. And see how things go from there.
  • diane - 2013-06-27
    Hi, I too adopted a tortie from a shelter, 4 yrs old, and she acclimated very quickly. She is very vocal (in a talkative way) so I named her squeaks. I also adopted another kitty, 1 yr tabby, that we picked up a week later because she was getting spayed. Squeaks does not get along with tabby kitty and attacks whenever she sees her. Although we have only had both for 2-3 weeks, I have been finding it difficult to figure out what to do as the tabby will hide for an entire day unless I find her. What I am trying now is keeping Squeaks in my room during the day and let the tabby roam the house to bond and get used to her new home without the fear of attack. I let Squeaks out at 5pm until bed and keep the tabby in the tv room with the door closed. I have not had any luck finding good info inline except the dreaded spray bottle when she attacks. I hope things change too as both kitties are great. Squeaks is such a love and very affectionate so I don't know why she has to attack the other kitty.
  • Shakespeare - 2013-10-03
    Just got a female tortie from rescue at pet smart. Her name is Juliet.. Juls for short..was told they don't get along with other cats which is cool for me because I live in an apt and it's just her and I. She is very affectionate.. Always in my lap.. On my bed.. A real joy I keep her litter clean and use pro plan cat food which she likes... Every once in a while then as a treat I will give her moist cat food.. Mayb once a week like Sunday. Also I love her color.. Very different
  • Stuart - 2014-01-17
    Mine is a question. We have a gray/black striped kitten and we're going to look at a tortie kitten at the shelter. My question is are tortie's difficult around other cats. I love my striped kitten and she needs a buddy and this tortie is female and after reading all of yall's comments I'm rethinking that maybe I should stay away from this type of breed. We're redoing a old Victorian house and I don't need a cat who thinks she owns the place and starts creating havoc everywhere and then doesn't want to be friends with our kitten. Can someone comment if things got better?
  • Meha Valdez - 2014-01-26
    Both of my kittens were freaks before I adopted them. My first one is a pure black that I rescued along with his two brothers that later became adopted. Onyx without his brothers became very needy and lonely and one day at Petsmart I saw Giselle. A beautiful tortie around the same age. I fell in love and brought her home. (They were both 4 months old.) At first she was very afraid always hiding hissing and fighting whenever Onyx tried to play. But Onyx wanted a friend so he never gave up on her and within about 2 weeks they were best friends. Its taken her much longer to get accustomed to humans then our cat. But now after about a month and a half she sleeps on my bed and forces physical attention. So yes there are good endings!!!

  • Meha Valdez - 2014-01-26
    Feral not freak*
  • Anonymous - 2014-07-04
    Not a lot of people want to deal with feral cats so I think it's wonderful you gave them a chance. I used to have a feral cat and loved him just as much as the other one. I wouldn't have my tortie now if I hadn't found her starving and only 6 weeks old. Now I don't know what I would ever do without her.
Lindust - 2014-06-11
We had a tortoiseshell cat Cali, she was 14 years old. We loved her sooo much and miss her a lot. I found her inside the grill of a jeep meowing for help on 6/2000 in a business parking lot where I worked. I rescued her and she was 9 weeks old. Cali had a ripped up chin and a virus in one eye which left her blind. We got her med help and she was good as new. We cherished her and she was grateful for her second chance in life. With time slipping by among the other cats we have ,Cali was 14 years old before we knew it. She'll always be my baby girl...she was feisty and independent but got along with our other cats. We enjoyed our tortoiseshell cat..she was a blessing to our life. till recently she had a tumor that couldn't be cured and within 2 months she had to say good bye. It was the hardest thing to have to go through at the vet that day. We are still sad but hope she had crossed the rainbow bridge...we love her so. Enjoy the moments with your kitties...time passes so fast with our pets. We would treasure our Cali and the memories forever. If only their lives were longer.......

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  • Anonymous - 2014-07-04
    Losing a pet is just as bad as losing a child. They become a part of your damily too. I hope time can heal your pain. Xoxo amber
Natasha - 2014-01-30
We adopted Mia our tortie when she was 10 weeks old. When we picked her up out of the cage she was clawing wanting to get away acting like she had never been held. She is almost 7 months old now and hates to be picked up. We didnt know anything about the breed before we got her but wished we had done more research. We have to kids 6 and 3, whom the tortie was for but shes not very kid friendly. We love Mia but we wanted a lovable pet and instead got a very distant cat who hides most of the day and plays all night. Our tortie rarely is still long enough to be petted and at times she can be to aggressive when playing. Shes not interested in playing with us but she seems to entertain herself and seems happy. We are thinking about a friend for Mia but do not want another tortie. Dont get me wrong i love her but torties are not exactly Family cats they seem to do best with a single person. Any suggestions on a breed? -Signed Tortiely Disappointed

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  • Clarice Brough - 2014-01-31
    Cats need to be socialized by 3 months of age, or it just doesn't happen. Sounds like that my be what happened to your tortie. Definitely get another cat, because that won't be the case with others.
Blueyes - 2013-10-26
I also have a wonderful rescue tortie. Her name is Lacey, she is now 3 and so playful. She runs back and forth in the hallways. Plays fetch by herself and will run up the walls in the hallway. I can not imagine my time without her daily 'craziness'. Love this little girl.

Jerry - 2013-09-21
I just got a 4 year old tortie and have had no problems. The only thing is that when I give some attention, especially if she is in my lap, is she doesn't stay very still.

Beth - 2011-06-17
I have a tortie named Annie. She's 8 years old and has been a whacko ever since we brought her home. She licks our walls and magazine covers; she brings socks and other small soft items downstairs, growling as she comes down the steps. She will not sit still at all (definitely ADHD); but most of all she "likes" to leave us pools of pee and piles of poo, for no obvious reason. It's extremely annoying but she is so darn cute, that we just clean it up and move on. Any suggestions about the peeing and pooping?

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  • Charlie Roche - 2011-06-17
    To the best of my knowledge you can't housebreak a tortoise. The only thing I can think of is to place some of the poop and pee on a newspaper and see if the scent will attract her to at least go in the same place on paper. I don't believe you can "train" them. However, yours sounds like a lot of fun so why worry.
  • Meg - 2011-06-19
    A very sick, young torti, Mollie, wondered into our backyard. My old cat had died several months ago and I felt this little thing was sent from him. After much struggling with my husband, I was a mess after the passing of our cat, KC, she came onto the porch. She immediately used the kitty litter and has ever since. We had all her problems taken care of and there were many. She is a healthy, active part of our family. She has made one trip (8 hours) not very pleasant but will make the trip again. So far, "potty" problems have not been an issue. We love her and thank heaven each day.
  • kathy - 2011-06-27
    We have a small tortoiseshell cat who is 1 turning 2 in October. She was a stray kitten born on a farm by a feril cat. We took her in and her brother when their mum left them. All of ours will use the litter box but sometimes if its not cleaned straight away or quick enough they will start going on the floor next to it. Try litter trey, news papper, puppy pee pads or even cat sprey to spray where she goes so she won't do it there again.
  • Tarrah - 2011-07-02
    Pee/Poo issues are often due to location and amount of litter pans. If Annie is an only cat, have two litter pans in quiet and accessible locations. If you have other cats also, then have at least one litter pan per cat plus one extra. Clean litter several times a day. Our pans are in the bathrooms and we clean them whenever we use the BR (we like litter that is flushable). We recently adopted a tortie mom cat and three kittens we found on vacation. They are all doing well, no litter box issues, which suprised me as they were outdoor cats. We love the tortie moms personality. Since Annie is so active be sure to have a tall climbing platform for her - she'll love it and you'll be entertained. We've adopted siamese rescue cats and their website has good info regarding cats in general. Good luck!
  • Marie - 2012-04-27
    Next time you catch her scold her and put her in her carrier for 30 minutes. Do not let her out tell her she did wrong. They are smart cats but we have to be smarter. Do it every time she does it. She will learn that if she dirties the house she is in there.
  • sally - 2012-04-30
    Sounds more like your cat is stressed. I have a torite cat and she is litter trained (though she is going out now so there's no need for it) and does not display the behaviour yours does. I would advise either going to the vets or a cheaper way to help your kittie is to buy a feliway plug and spray it will help calm her down so that you can try and find out what the problem is. tortie cats are known for their strange behaviour ours does bring socks downstairs but she's playfull and not growling when she does it. hope this helps
  • roxie - 2012-05-19
    Start cleaning your litter box more often and keep more depth in your box for a start. It's better than cleaning the boo boos off the floor. I have a 10 yr old tortie and she prefers a clean deep litter box. Just an idea of past experiences. Good Luck! roxie
  • Rebecca - 2012-06-08
    I agree with Roxie. My tortie, Ms. Hekitty (named for the Goddess 'Hecate'), is fastidious about using her litter box. However, she insists that it be cleaned twice a day, or 'notes' about my failure are left on the bath mat. She is also VERY picky about what litter she will sully her pristine paws with, so you might have to change the litter you are using. Hekitty wants very fine grained, scoopable litter with no artificial scents at all. I've found a good natural, corn based one that she adores...possibly because it matches the orange in her coat and looks stylish as she attends to her business. But you are right about one thing, Beth...they are ALL psychotic little furballs. There's a saying among tortie caretakers, 'the tortie stink-eye.' And they are all loaded with tortitude and fursonality!
  • Joy - 2012-11-12
    We adopted a shelter Tortie, and we named her Toostsie (looks like a tootsie roll).  She has claimed each of our shelter mutt's beds, ignores her own, BUT allows Jackpot to sleep WITH her occaisionally. When my grown kids's dogs visit, she is front and center, and has them all trained to leave her alone, just by staring them down. She takes road trips with us, and uses her litter box on the car floor when she needs to go! She is very playful and affectionate, and responds like a dog when we call her. Absolutely love this cat!!!!!!! She likes me alot, but head butts my husband, and kisses him while we watch tv. Needless to say, we hit another 'jackpot'! If you adopt cats, you can see their true personality, and see if they are a good match for you.
  • Stacy - 2013-01-27
    If she has been declawed, her paws maybe sensitive even years later. Litter maybe hurting her. The finer litter is good for cats with sensitive paws. Sometimes just changing the litter type makes a huge difference.
  • CHRIS - 2013-08-22
    Maybe your tortie needs privacy? Our tortie, Mica, likes hers, so we got her a Clevercat Top Entry Litterbox (Look at She seems to like jumping down inside, doing her business, then coming out. No mess on the floor, other than the occasional crystal grains that comes out on her paws. It was not the first bin we had, but it's the best one so far. The first bin, a different brand, leaked like crazy as Mica would pee high onto the wall of the first bin, and it leaked out. Phew! The Clevercat bin solved all of our kitty pee-poop issues. Get the liners and deodorizing powder. We also use the large crystal cat litter that can go down the toilet (in small amounts; we always throw the entire bag away into the garbage). Crystals are extremely clean and last about two weeks before a change is needed.
Dawn - 2013-07-21
My princess is named Maya but she answers to Mooshoo, Meena, Moomoo and any other M baby name I say. She was a year when we found her, scraggly, skinny stray. As I type she's curled under my arm. She's very protective of me. She's very moody and never talks unless I'm not home and squeaks when you pick her up. Everyone says she's the softest cat they've ever felt, and that's cause she's such a little clean freak. She loves me and I her. Couldn't live a day without my princess and her silly antics!

Jessie Njeri M - 2013-04-03
I don't know how to handle this kitten it's fighting me really hard plus I just got it.......haven't thought of a name to give it yet.

Malin - 2013-04-12
We can a wonderful tortie named Meggie who was dumped as a kitten in our neighborhood along with two other kitten. We have had no problems with litter training or scratching furniture. She is spoiled rotten! We have had her for almost a year and can't imagine our home with her. She definitely has personality. She talks to you, plays fetch and will even give you a high five. She is small for her age but she was so starved when she first wandered up to own home. it was heartbreakening, she was close to death when we took her to the vet when she arrived. Sadly her brother and sister died who were taken by neighbors. But Meggie is happy!

allison - 2013-04-11
I have a really beautiful tortoiseshell kitty myself, she looks just like the one in the picture, she just turned a year old & she's pregnant but not real sure how far along she is but I'm worried whether or not she will deliver her babies without any problems because she's so tiny that she looks like a kitten still. We named her Midge because when she was born, she was the smallest of the litter of 4 which made her a midget, so we just named her Midge. I worried about her momma having trouble cuz she was little also & only 10 months old but she was not as little as Midge is now & she's 1. Does anybody know if I should worry? Does anybody else have 1 that is just as small? Is it normal for her to be so little? Her other siblings are normal sizes.

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  • Jasmine Brough Hinesley - 2013-04-12
    It can be normal for cats to be little. Sometimes runts of the litter never get to be as big as their siblings or parents. That being said, it is possible that her being so small could make it difficult for her to deliver her babies safely. If you are really concerned you may want to take her to a vet to see if they recommend anything. Also, you may want to get her spayed after she has this litter, and spay and neuter any of the new kittens to make sure they don't have problems either.