Tempting Tangerine Tabbies

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Orange is such an uplifting color. Is there anyone whose spirit doesn't soar when the sun at dawn or sunset lights up the sky and clouds with brilliant hues of orange? We Rim folks are doubly blessed with rocky cliffs that reflect different shades of orange from salmon pink to deep burnt rust. During this cold time of year, the color orange flickers in our woodstoves and fireplaces keeping us warm. The bounty of our great country allows us to have delicious orange citrus fruits that help us fight colds.

This week, our featured cats are orange tabbies. Their colors range from dark reddish orange to light marmalade orange. They all have vertical striping, which is called the mackerel tabby pattern. You won't see red or cream cats without striped tabby markings because the tabby suppressing gene is not effective on red or cream colored cats. The gene that is responsible for the color orange in cats is called the "O" gene!

Many orange tabbies come with some white markings. If they have white paws, they are called "mitted" cats. A white spot on the chest is called a "locket." If a cat has one or more little white belly spots, they are called "buttons." A tabby cat that is about half white and half tabby is called "bicolor."

Typically tabbies have an "M" pattern on their forehead. One legend relates that the Virgin Mary bestowed an "M" on a tabby's head after it helped keep the Baby Jesus warm. What a good kitty!

It's hard to find an orange cat that does not have a great personality and a loving heart. They have cute names like Cajun, Cedar, Cheeto, Cheddar, Colby, Garfield, Mandarin, Melon, Mercury, Paprika, Pumpkin, Sherbet, Tang and Tiger Lily.

Now check out this week's tempting tangerine tabbies:

SCOUT

Scout is a very affectionate 4-1/2-year-old neutered male bicolor orange tabby. If you like talking cats, Scout is the boy for you. He doesn't say meow, but rather a soft ow, ow. Very sweet! Scout was brought to our shelter along with his kitty friend Cookie when his mistress passed away. Cookie took ill and also died, so Scout is doubly grieved. He is very good with other cats and adores people, coming forward for attention each time someone enters his kennel area. He would be ever so happy to lift your spirits with his love.

WOODY

Woody is an endearing 3-year-old neutered male longhaired pastel orange tabby. He reminds you of an orange cloud at sunset -- just divine! He is declawed on his front paws and therefore should be kept indoors. Woody has one of those very special loving personalities that make him an instant hit with visitors. He doesn't know a stranger. The reason Woody is at our shelter is because his beloved owner passed away and he was brought in, along with his three buddies -- Al, Ranger and Toby.

KIRBY

Kirby is a charming 5-year-old neutered male orange tabby. He has a cute, boyish personality and is very playful and personable. Kirby likes to perch on a shelf and watch whatever you're doing. He'd give you advice if you'd listen, but otherwise he's content to just be there when you need a friend who'll give you unconditional love on demand.

MORRIS

Morris is a kind-hearted 3-year-old neutered male orange tabby with a white chest and dapper white mittens. He is a very confident cat, and why wouldn't he be with his good looks and happy temperament? He has been housed with a number of different cats and seems to adapt well to change. Morris is a big, handsome guy with a big, loving heart to match. He'd love to share his wonderful attributes with you.

BIG RED

Big Red is an extraordinary 3-year-old neutered male bicolor red tabby cat. He stands out because of his large size and the unique markings on his face and body. Red is a quiet, well-behaved cat and will do well in a slower-paced adult home where he feels secure and spoiled. Once he settles in to your home, you will find that he is a real lover boy.

To learn more about these and other adoptable pets, visit the shelter at 812 S. McLane Road, call 474-5590 or visit www.paysonhumanesociety.com.

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