Nothing beats sharing your home with a miniature tiger. You get the majesty of those stripes, the dignity of a regal feline, and the spice that comes with a fiery coat. That’s the magic of orange cats! These tabbies mix the bright orange shades of the fearsome predator with easy portability. Orange shows up in plenty of breeds: everyone from Abyssinian to Tabby. You’ll see gradations from red to cream. However, that bold ginger color isn’t as common as you might think. They aren’t as rare as white cats, but they’re at the lower end of the spectrum. So when you add one of these tiny tigers to your home, you know you have something special. And when you have a special feline, they need a special name. Good thing we have 157 orange cat names that stand out from the crowd – exactly like your kitty!
As with other cat coats, the orange color is genetic. Pheomelanin is the pigment that creates the spectrum of red to yellow, and it’s carried on the X chromosome. Since female cats need TWO copies of pheomelanin to produce an orange coat, that means there are 80% more males than females.
What usually happens is a female cat will get one X chromosome with pheomelanin and one X chromosome with eumelanin (the pigment that codes for black hair coats). As a result, you get a tortoiseshell or calico.
If you get that double punch of pheomelanin, you end up with an orange cat. And depending on how strong the pigment is, you can see a solid red or a soft cream. This is why people often describe orange cats as “yellows,” “gingers,” or “marmalades.” With such a range of colors, the choice for orange cat names opens wide!
What do ALL orange cats have in common? They’re tabbies! That’s right – they all have the “M” on their forehead. The orange color – and stripes – are a coat pattern, NOT a breed – something people often confuse when they start looking for these gingery felines. And that tabby coat comes in five different “patterns:”
- Classic Tabby: Bold, swirling patterns
- Mackerel Tabby: Narrow, parallel stripes
- Patched Tabby: Separate patches of color (like a tortie)
- Spotted Tabby: Large or small spots
- Ticked Tabby: Also known as the Abyssinian or Agouti tabby, the individual hairs have stripes on them
The Tabby Myth
All tabbies sport that mysterious “M” on their foreheads – whether they wear orange or not. And people have speculated about how the pattern came about for centuries. In reality, it’s probably linked to the tabby stripes and a need for camouflage. But there are plenty of myths that have popped up to explain the existence of those four lines – going all the way back to the beginning of time. And when you delve into the stories, it can fuel your creative juices for the naming process.
In ancient Egypt, cats received daily worship. They weren’t called “cats,” though. Instead, they were called “Mau.” It sounds close to the meowing sound cats produce. And the Egyptian people believed the “M” on the tabby forehead referred to one of two things. First, it could have referenced the name “Mau.” Second, it may have been a representation of the sacred scarab beetle. Scarabs depicted the cycle of death and rebirth – something important to the Egyptians. Considering they even mummified their beloved family cats to have them in the afterlife, the beetle may be the more likely of the two.
You won’t find the tale in the Bible, but there IS a story regarding Jesus and an orange tabby. The young baby was restless and unable to sleep. So the stable cat jumped into the cradle and began purring. The baby fell asleep, comforted by the cat’s warmth and presence. Because she was so grateful, Mary kissed the cat on the forehead. The “M” remained on the cat’s fur to represent her name (and gratitude, of course). In other tellings, Mary wrote the “M” with her finger to immortalize her thanks. Either way, the tabby kept the reminder through the ages.
To give equal space to everyone, we have to include the story of Muhammad and his cat, Muezza. As sounds perfectly normal for a cat – especially an orange cat known for laziness – Muezza fell asleep on the sleeve of Muhammad’s robe. The call to prayer sounded, but Muhammad didn’t want to wake the cat. (A considerate cat-person if ever there was one) Needing to leave, he cut away the sleeve where Muezza slept. Muhammad attended the prayer meeting, and Muezza continued to sleep on the cut sleeve. Ever since, tabby cats wear an “M” to represent Muhammad and his care and generosity.
And then there’s an old folk tale that probably comes closest to the truth. The “M” is the leftover frown lines of a cat, staring in rapt concentration at a mousehole. Our precious tabbies may no longer need to hunker down to wait for a mouse to appear, but the mark of patience remains, an honor of the hunter that protected granaries, stables, and ships in the distant past.
Orange Cat Names
Whether you have a fiery red Abyssinian or a marmalade tabby, you know you have a special cat. Similar to their ginger-haired human counterparts, owners believe their orange cats have out-going personalities. And they certainly seem to enjoy attention! My parents have an orange tabby who’s downright insistent that you MUST pay attention to her – NOW! She’ll even walk over your book to get you to pet her, in case you miss her meows. It’s a common orange tabby behavior.
Simultaneously, while some owners (including my sister) argue the contrary, orange cats aren’t known for being the most ACTIVE felines on the planet. They’d rather laze in the sun between grabs for attention. It’s a trait that often winds its way into popular culture.
These facts open the doors on orange cat names wide. You have so many options to choose from! Do you go with the classic angle of coat color? Or do you try for something more unique? Maybe you capitalize on that famous orange cat appetite? Whatever you’re looking for, we have 157 orange cat names to get your mind churning with possibilities. And you’re not limited to this list, either! You can always peruse ANY of our names for inspiration. Who says you have to pick orange cat names? Your imagination is wide open – don’t limit yourself to color or even breed. A name is a name, after all!
Famous Orange Cat Names
Hollywood LOVES orange cats. More than any other hair coat, these fiery felines have saturated movies and television. Whether you’re considering big cats or small, you’ll find that orange color EVERYWHERE. They’re the most popular felines! As Jim Davis, the creator of Garfield, likes to say, “In my head, the sky is blue, the grass is green, and cats are orange.” So if you want orange cat names, you have PLENTY of famous felines to choose from.
- Aslan: Fans of C.S. Lewis’s The Chronicles of Narnia’s books and movies know the wise lion.
- Brian: Older cartoon fans of Top Cat recognize this orange feline.
- Cat: Not the most original name, but he’s a famous part of Breakfast at Tiffany’s (And the cat who played him was named Orangey).
- Crookshanks: Harry Potter fans recognize the name of Hermione’s fluffy orange Persian.
- Dewey: This fluffy orange cat won hearts in an Iowa town (and around the world) when he moved into a library one freezing winter night.
- Dinah: In Disney’s Alice in Wonderland, she’s Alice’s red kitten.
- Garfield: Does this famous lasagna-eating cat need an introduction?
- Goose: While technically a Flerken, this orange tabby from Captain Marvel is a personal favorite of mine.
- Heathcliff: Joining Garfield in comic and television stardom, this orange tabby is an older favorite.
- Hobbes: This toy-turned-tiger is the famous headliner from the comic Calvin and Hobbes.
- Jonesy: You know you cheered when this orange tabby survived the invasion in Aliens.
- Milo: Everyone who watched Milo and Otis knows this tiny orange kitten.
- Nala: The fiery lioness was Simba’s companion in The Lion King.
- Oliver: Disney’s own orange tabby, he’s the title character from Oliver & Company.
- Puss in Boots: That’s right, the swashbuckling feline from the Shrek franchise.
- Rajah: While not a speaking role, everyone recognizes the iconic tiger from Aladdin.
- Shere Kahn: Whether you read the book or watched the movies, you know this tiger from Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book.
- Simba: The true King of Pride Rock and the hero of The Lion King.
- Spot: Data’s orange tabby from Star Trek: The Next Generation.
- Thomas O’Malley: The original alley cat and the hero from The Aristocats.
- Tigger: “The most wonderful thing about Tiggers is I’m the only one.” A.A. Milne’s beloved character from Winnie the Pooh.
- Toulouse: The red kitten of the trio from The Aristocats.
- Tony: That’s right, Tony the Tiger from your Frosted Flakes.
Orange Cat Names Based on Color
Obviously, it’s easy to use that brilliant coat as the source for orange cat names. The color POPS! So why not use it for your inspiration? And there’s nothing wrong with that. But you don’t want to go too simple. (Let’s face it, “Orange” is boring) You have so many gradations possible with an orange cat. And when you start thinking through possibilities for your stunning tabby, you’re imagination will take flight. We have color names that stand out from the crowd.
- Vermillion (This is a bright reddish-orange)
Orange Cat Names Based on Irish Names
Red hair is often associated with an Irish heritage. Maybe you have an Irish background yourself. Or you could enjoy the culture and mythology of the region. Either way, there’s nothing wrong with looking into an Irish naming book as inspiration for your orange cat names. You’ll find plenty of beautiful options that’ll set your mind on fire – exactly like your feline’s brilliant fur!
- Flynn (Means “son of the red-haired man”)
- Keegan (Means “son of fire”)
- Roisin (Pronounced “Ro-sheen”)
- Rory (Means “the red king”)
Orange Cat Names Based on Fire
What do all of the colors of an orange cat bring to mind? That’s right – a flickering flame. So why not go in that direction? You don’t usually see angry personalities in these felines, but that’s okay. You’re using the colors of that vibrant fur for your inspiration. And you’ll find perfect orange cat names when you start thinking down the fiery route. Besides, these snuggle-bugs WILL keep you warm. It’s the perfect way to compliment them!
- Aidan (Gaelic for “firey”)
- Floga (Greek for “flame”)
- Fuego (Spanish for “fire”)
- Jamra (Arabic for “ember”)
- Vatra (Croatian for “fire”)
Unique Orange Cat Names
You want something out of the ordinary. That’s understandable. After all, orange cats don’t show up all that often. And, luckily for you, we have some unique orange cat names for you. They still pay homage to those brilliant red and gold shades of fur, but they look at everything in a different light. It’s a unique slant on names that other people may not have considered. Because when you have a cat with a coat color that doesn’t pop up that often, you want to think outside of the box.
- Alani (Hawaiian for “orange tree”)
- Cheyenne (Native American for “red”)
- Jupiter (The orange planet)
- Kamala (Hindu for “pale red”)
- Monarch (Monarch butterflies are orange)
- Nubit (Ancient Egyptian for “golden lady”)
- Orion (Greek for “son of fire”)
- Rufus (Latin for “redhead”)
Orange Cat Names Based on Flowers
Okay, true, there are a lot of orange flowers and plants out there. However, there are several flowers that people KNOW pop up with orange blooms. If you have a bright, sunny feline with a glowing disposition, why not consider one of these plants as the inspiration for your orange cat name? You may not be able to keep their namesake around the house (some are toxic to cats), but there’s always something to be said for irony. Besides, if the plant itself is beautiful, you’re still making a lovely statement in choosing the name.
- Tiger Lily
Orange Cat Names Based on Food
Have you ever looked at how many foods and beverages have a red or orange tint? It’s crazy! When I started making a list (helped along by my husband), I was stunned. And since orange felines have a well-earned reputation for snacking between meals, the culinary world seems like the perfect place to look for orange cat names. You DO need to watch your fiery felines in the kitchen. They have a habit of packing on the pounds, and they’re NOT good candidates for free-feeding. Garfield played up the over-eating habit to extremes, but owners often see obesity in their orange kitties. So look through the pantry for your naming inspiration, but mind the calories with your cat’s food at the same time. Or you could end up with an orange bowling ball (or, in my sister’s case, TWO orange bowling balls).
- Candy Corn
- Fanta (The popular orange soda)
- Mai Tai
- Masago (The tiny orange fish eggs put on sushi)
- Sherbet/Sherbert (Both spellings are correct)
- Sweet Potato
Orange Cat Names Based on Popular Culture
Red’s a popular color for characters in literature, television, and movies. You’ll see actors and actresses don fiery locks (usually to mimic a punch of personality), and you’ll also see red appear in their costumes. Either way, you have plenty of choices when it comes to orange cat names and popular culture. You can choose your favorite character, or even the actor or actress behind the role – whatever works for you! The more you read and watch, the more your imagination will take flight. It’s a perfect storm of red and orange!
- Anastasia (The heroine of the movie and musical has red hair)
- Anna (The Frozen heroine)
- Archie (The hero of Archie comics)
- Ariel (Disney’s famous mermaid)
- Clawhauser (The tiger police officer in Zootopia)
- Deadpool (The Merc with a Mouth – he’s never without his red suit)
- Fiona (The ogre princess of the Shrek franchise)
- Glinda (“Click your heels three times.” The Good Witch from The Wizard of Oz)
- Giselle (Whether in cartoon or reality, the heroine of Enchanted has fiery locks)
- Jean Grey (This X-Men character is always depicted with red hair)
- Nemo (Or Marlin – either clownfish from Finding Nemo and Finding Dory sports orange and white stripes)
- Merida (The heroine of Pixar’s Brave)
- Pippi Longstocking (The adventurous heroine from the books by Astrid Lindgren)
- Poison Ivy (This notorious DC villain has red hair)
- Scarlet Witch (Or you can always stick to Wanda or even Maximoff)
- Tang (Astronauts and kids alike loved this powdered drink)
- Tintin (Readers of the French comic The Adventures of Tintin know the redheaded hero)
- Weasley (Face it, all of the Weasleys in Harry Potter have red hair)
- Ygritte (No one’s bolder than this Game of Thrones character)
- Zuko (The Fire Nation’s Prince is a great choice for fans of Avatar: The Last Airbender – NOT the live-action movie)
Orange Cat Names – Different Languages
Sometimes hiding in plain sight is clever. And a lot of cats attempt to do so. Why not choose orange cat names that do the same? You can look up “orange” in other languages and find beautiful options for your out-going feline. They may reference your personal culture. Or you could find the language intriguing. Maybe you just want to start a conversation with your family and friends. There’s no wrong answer, really. All of these options sound intriguing, and they give your tiny tiger a reason to hold their head up high.
- Arancia (Italian)
- Daidaiiro (Japanese)
- Dalandan (Filipino)
- Oren (Welsh)
- Jeruk (Indonesian)
- Karaka (Maori)
- Katom (Hebrew)
- Komala (Bengali)
- Naranja (Spanish)
- Oranssi (Finnish)
- Portokale (Greek)
- Rojo (Spanish)
Orange as a Sunset
Orange tabbies were born to stand out. And they know it! They make it their business to get your attention, no matter what you were planning on doing. You’ll find your ginger kitty plopping in your lap for cuddles and love. Shouldn’t you make sure you find orange cat names that suit that dynamite personality? After all, who else gets to say they share a home with a bitty tiger? It’s a special opportunity!
So hide the treats away to keep your personal Garfield from over-indulging. But then settle down for a personal snuggle session. You have a special cat, and you get to enjoy a unique bond you’ll never regret.