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-The Maine Coon Cat-
COLOR Code Chart
understanding the European Fife EMF system  

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This page is for Educational purposes!

The Chart below is a list of CODES used to describe Maine Coon Cat color in the European System. Reference this chart for a better understanding of your Maine Coon Kitten coat 

MCO=Maine Coon
The small
letters indicate the cat's COLOR:
n = black
a = blue
d = red
e = creme
f = blacktortie

g = bluetortie
s = silver
w = white
y = golden

numbers indicate the cat's PATTERN:
01 = Van
02 = Harlequin
03 = Bicolor

09 = Unspecified amount of white
- - - - - - - - - - - -
11 = Shaded
12 = Shell
- - - - - - - - - - - -
21 = Agouti (unspecified tabby pattern)
22 = blotched tabby (classic tabby)
23 = macharel tabby
24 = spotted tabby
25 = ticked tabby

DISCLAIMER: The images on this page are NOT my own!! 

On this page, for the purpose of teaching, I found good examples online of the specified coat patterns and colors of Maine Coon Cats and Kittens. If you see a copyright infringement with one of these photos, I will be happy to give credit or remove the photo. Stock images have been used.

This page is for Educational purposes!

The Dilute Gene changes:

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----the Black to GREY (we call it BLUE)
the Red to CREAM 
For simplicity I will speak of Black and Red only. Blue & Cream are only dilute expressions of these colors.


  1. Cats have 2 main COLORS

    1. Black (is also Blue)​

    2. Red (is also Cream)

    3. White is not a color, but is a white mask--Hiding the actual black or red color!

  2. Cats have 2 main patterns

    1. SOLID

      1. with silver = smoke ​

      2. no silver = just solid

    2. STRIPES (3 tabby patterns)

      1. Classic/marbled/blotched​

      2. Mackerel (lines)

      3. Ticked (uniform tips of color)

  3. Cats' undercoats may (or not) be SILVER

    1. We say SMOKE for a solid cat with silver

    2. We say SILVER for tabby patterned cats with silver

      1. Black Tabby with silver = Black Silver​

      2. ​Black Tabby without silver = BROWN TABBY

This page is for Educational purposes!

Cat Color LESSONS 101


  1. What is so special about TORTIES?

    1. The color RED is genetically sex-linked.

    2. Most red cats are males

    3. Often (not always) when a girl cat has RED COLOR this presents (expresses) as a black cat with the red showing.

    4. When both colors (RED & black) express themselves together at the same time we call this TORTIE.  ​​

    5. Torties (black & red at the same time) are eitherSTRIPES (3 tabby patterns) or SOLIDS

      1. Solid or Striped? Exclude all red/cream color to determine! Pretend RED is not there at all!​

    6. Torties are particularly beautiful with white because she is now expressing all 3 colors (black and red, and white)!

    7. Torties (black and red together) may have a silver undercoat.


  1. WITH WHITE (09) = any small amount (low grade) of white. Such as 'mittens' and chest. 

  2. BICOLOR (03) = relatively equal amounts of white and another color 

  3. HARLEQUIN (02) = Majority white. The other color is only a small amount.

  4. SOLID WHITE (w) = This is a color (not patten). White is a "masking gene" which hides the true color of the cat. Interestingly, the true color often is seen as a dot on the top of the head when the kitten is first born.


  1. COLORS (letters). The Colors are BLACK &  RED (blue & cream). Black & red together is TORTIE.

    • Don't count: Silver and Gold are undercoat colors.  

    • Don't count: White is masking a colored cat.

  2. PATTERNS (numbers) 

    • Tabby Patterns (#21-25) 3 patterns

      1. CLASSIC #22 (marbled, blotched). Pattern is swirly. 

      2. TICKED #25. Pattern is uniform placement on each hair for the whole cat. Similar to solid, but only on the tips of each hair uniformly. This pattern is used to create Shaded and shelled--which are measurements of how much pigment is on each hair.

      3. MACKEREL #23. Pattern is striped. 

  • Variations of white (#s 01-09)​ See above.

  • Shaded and shell (#11-12) SKIP IT. (The Measurment of color on the tip of hairs-ticked pattern)


This page is for Educational purposes!

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