What is the rarest Maine Coon colour?

What is the rarest Maine Coon colour?
What is the rarest Maine Coon colour? Image: MikeB

This is a bit technically and I'd say an example of a cat fancy nerd navel gazing! I'm being a bit cruel. But there is not much point in knowing the answer. But perhaps the question has been asked with an eye on adopting the ultimate status symbol. My guess is that the 'dilute calico smoke' is the rarest coat type and colour. I explain why later in the article.

I don't have a photograph of a dilute calico smoke Maine Coon because they are vanishingly rare :).

This is where I have to make a confession. I don't know the answer. But I won't be alone. I am positive that the author on any other website providing an answer to question in the title will be guessing. That's because there's no available information on this from the cat associations.

If we had access to the list of Maine Coon registrations at the Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA) for the past five years (plus the same from the other major associations) and if the list specified full details of the cats registered including the coat type, we'd be able to answer the question with some accuracy. 

Breeders register their kittens with their chosen cat association. The more registrations there are the less rare the cat is.

One site says that gold and silver coats are rare. Another says solid orange and yet another says jet black.

The CFA breed standard does not list 'gold' as a colour as a far as I can tell. It must be listed under a different description (dilute ginger?). The solid colors including black are listed. I can't see black being rare.

What I feel inclined to do is to go to the bottom of the very lengthy list of accepted coat colors and see what's listed at last place! These are likely to be the rarest coat types (perhaps!).

There we have 'dilute calico smoke'. This is a tortoiseshell-and-white cat carrying the dilution gene to give a washed-out tortoiseshell appearance combined with the smoke appearance which is dark tips to the lighter hair strands. A very complicated coat type I'd argue and also rare.

This is the description:

DILUTE CALICO SMOKE: white with unbrindled patches of blue and shades of cream. Blue and cream patches to have a white undercoat. White predominate on the underparts of the cat.

Another rare coat would be 'blue-cream smoke and white' described as:

BLUE-CREAM SMOKE & WHITE: color as defined for blue cream smoke with or without white on the face. Must have white on bib, belly, and all four paws.

And a third rare one, I would suggest might be:

TORTIE SMOKE & WHITE: color as defined for tortie smoke with or without white on the face. Must have white on bib, belly, and all four paws.

Like I said I am speculating. It's a bit of fun. Comments welcome particularly from people in the cat fancy.


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