How Rare Is Your Maine Coons Color Code?

Get ready to discover the unique Maine Coon color codes and learn about the wide range of colors and patterns that make these cats so special.

The EMS system categorizes the diverse range of colors and patterns that Maine Coons have, making it easier for breeders and enthusiasts to describe and identify the unique coloring of each cat. These codes describe the breed, color, color modifications, and other physical traits.

From solid white to cinnamon, Maine Coons display a wide variety of colors, each with its own unique beauty.

Keep reading to learn more about the different Maine Coon colors, the Easy Mind System (EMS) coding system, and what makes the Maine Coon cat breed so special.

Maine Coon Color Codes

Maine Coons are a highly popular domestic cat breed considered to be one of the largest in the world.

Their long, fluffy coats, bushy tails, and tufted ears give them a striking appearance.

Maine Coon cats are muscular with large, expressive eyes and rectangular-shaped heads.

Their beautiful thick fur is semi-water-resistant and can be either smooth, shaggy, or wavy.

On top of their regal looks, these large cats have friendly, affectionate, and outgoing personalities, and the breed is well known for its family-friendly nature.

The number of different colors of Maine Coons is vast, with over 75 different combinations to choose from!

The brown tabby Maine Coon is the most common color, which features a brown base coat with darker stripes and spots scattered across the fur. Other notable colors include black, red, silver, and white.

EMS color codes make up the ultimate system for categorizing different colors and patterns of Maine Coon cats.

Cat breeders and enthusiasts use it to help identify and describe the unique coloring of individual cats.

The EMS, or FIFe Easy Mind System, is not genetically based. It is simply a tool to make describing cats easy.

Several parts make up this methodical system, each representing a different aspect of the cat’s appearance.

Whilst EMS code meanings may seem confusing at first, this breakdown will help clarify them for you.

The main code categorizations are as follows:


First, the EMS code indicates the cat’s breed. This part of the code consists of three uppercase letters.

FIFe (the International Feline Federation that created EMS) has codes for recognized breeds, and non-recognized breeds, and has assigned the letter “x” to indicate a non-recognized variety.

Every breed has a FIFe EMS code.

The Maine Coon is coded as MCO.

EXO is Exotic, PER is Persian, RAG is Ragdoll, and SIB is Siberian, to list a few more examples.

The breed code always starts with the same letter as the breed name, as seen in the examples above.

If the breed comes in short or long-hair varieties, the last letter is normally S or L.

Fur Color

A single lowercase letter is used to represent the basic color of the cat’s fur. This can be one of sixteen different colors.

For instance, the most popular colors are black (n), blue (a), chocolate (b), lilac (c), red (d), and cream (e).

Along with the color, the code has letters that represent color modifiers, like silver and gold.

Dilute modifiers are also accounted for. These are dominant genes that create a warmer tone of a particular color.

One example from the EMS code is “cm,” which is caramel based on a lilac fur coat.


Besides color modifiers, there are also modifiers for the amount of white in the cat’s fur color, which is coded in letters.

These modifiers describe how the white is patterned on the cat.

For instance, the number 04 represents the mitted pattern that is unique to Ragdolls.

Tabby patterns and pointed patterns are also represented with numbers.

Tabby pattern options include mackerel tabby (23) and spotted tabby (24).

There are seven tabby pattern options in total.

Pointed pattern codes are 31, 32, and 33, which represent the Burmese, Tonkinese, and Siamese, respectively.

Maine Coon color and pattern codes may include any of these tabby and pointed patterns.

Other Physical Traits

More double-digit numbers represent the look of the cat’s:

  • Tail
  • Eye Color
  • Ears
  • Coat Structure

Cats’ eye colors may fall into one of seven colors, including:

  • Blue (61)
  • Copper (62)
  • Odd-eyed (63)
  • Green (64)

A space separates individual EMS codes.

Here are some examples of Maine Coon color codes:

  • Black classic tabby with yellow eyes: MCO n 21 2
  • Blue silver torbie with green eyes: MCO a 25 4
  • Cream cameo tabby with amber eyes and white markings: MCO e 21 6 09

By using the EMS cat code, breeders and cat experts or hobbyists can easily identify and describe the coloring of each Maine Coon.

As a result, it is easier to track breeding and genetics within the breed.

Colors And Patterns Of Maine Coon Cats

Here is an overview of the key Maine Coon colors and pattern groups.

These are just a few examples of the many color and pattern variations that Maine Coon cats can have.

Color Groups

Below, we take a look at some of the different Maine Coon color groups:

Black and White

Black or white Maine Coons can have either a solid or tabby pattern, and their eyes are usually green or gold.

These two colors are striking in appearance and among the most common Maine Coon color groups.

Red and Orange

Red and orange Maine Coons are less common but unquestionably beautiful.

They can have a solid or tabby pattern, and their eyes are usually yellow or green.

They may range in color shade from pale to highly pigmented.

Gray and Silver

This color group describes Maine Coons with gray or silver coats.

Gray and silver are two of the most sought-after colors of Maine Coon cats.

Silver or gold-coated Maine Coons have a fur coat that shimmers in the light, resulting from a rare inhibitor gene. This rare gene causes pigmentation loss in the Maine Coon’s undercoat.

Usually, smoky-colored felines have green eyes.

Other Maine Coon Colors (OMCC)

Of course, there may be other colors outside the standardized color list.

The exceptions to this category are as follows:

  • Chocolate
  • Lavender
  • Himalayan

New colors have the opportunity to be registered under the CFA.

Pattern Groups

We will now take a look at the different pattern groups:


Tabby Maine Coons are the most common pattern group.

They have distinctive stripes and markings on their coats, and their eyes can be a variety of colors.

Black tabbies (represented by the code Maine Coon n22) can appear either blotchy or ticked, with darker fur on the dorsal crest.


Solid Maine Coons have a uniform color on their coats, with no stripes or markings.

They can come in a wide variety of colors and have eyes that are usually gold or green.

The solid color classes are:

  • White
  • Black
  • Blue
  • Red
  • Cream


The parti-color class includes tortoiseshell and blue cream.

Tortoiseshell Maine Coons have a unique pattern with patches of black, orange, and sometimes white.

Their eyes can be a variety of colors.

Parti-Color and White

Calico Maine Coons are part of this class.

They are similar to the tortoiseshell but have additional white patches.

The parti-color and white Maine Coon have a distinctive appearance, and their eyes can be a variety of colors.

This pattern group also includes the following:

  • Tortoiseshell-and-white
  • Blue-cream-and-white variations


In this pattern group, the tips of the Maine Coon’s fur are darker than the base.

Shaded or smoke Maine Coons come in a variety of color combinations, including:

  • Chinchilla Blue Silver
  • Shell Cream
  • Black Smoke

Shaded/Smoke and White

As the name implies, this pattern group includes white in a shaded or smoke-patterned Maine Coon.

The shaded tortoiseshell and white pattern and shaded calico pattern are members of this group.

Most of the color-pattern combinations in this group include white on the belly and paws.

What Is The Rarest Maine Coon Color?

Determining the rarest Maine Coon color is difficult as it can vary depending on location and breeding practices.

Without comprehensive data on every Maine Coon and its colors, color rarity is more of an educated guess.

However, some colors are generally considered to be rarer than others.

One of the rarest Maine Coon colors is solid white.

This is because the gene that causes white fur in cats is linked to deafness, so many breeders avoid breeding solid white-coated Maine Coons, to avoid potential health problems.

Congenital deafness may cause a Maine Coon to have hearing loss in one or both ears.

Solid white Maine Coons have pink paw pads and pink noses.

White cats as a whole are rare, only making up an estimated 5% of the entire cat population. White Maine Coons are no different!

Learn more fascinating facts about the white Maine Coon cat, in my article.

Cinnamon is another rare Maine Coon color.

This is a Maine Coon cat with a warm, reddish-brown hue that is actually a light dilute of black. It is part of a brown-hue variation that is rarely seen in these beautiful felines.

Other rare colors include the following:

Black Smoke

A white undercoat with a darker color on the tips of their fur gives Maine Coons the smoke color.

Smoke-colored Maine Coons tend to have darker faces and paws than the rest of their bodies.

While black-tipped fur is the most common variation of this smoke shade, it may also have lighter hues or diluted blue hues.


Cream Maine Coons cats are not as rare as solid white or cinnamon, but it is still less common.

The cream color is a diluted shade of red, and shades of cream can vary from pale to rich.

There are 25 color and pattern combinations that include the cream color.

Silver Tabby With White

This color combination is stunning but can be difficult to produce, making it rare.

Silver-patched tabbies can have patches ranging in color from light cream to red, and the cat’s lip and chin may be trimmed with white.

Solid Red

Maine Coons with solid red, rich-colored fur (not too pale or too dark) are rare.

Solid red Maine Coons are stunning, with a brilliant shade covering them from head to toe.

Their lips and chins match the red shade of their coats.

Do Maine Coon Kittens Change Color?

Maine Coon kittens may change over the years as they grow and mature.

The final color and pattern may not be fully evident until they are around 2-3 years old.

This is because Maine Coon kitten fur can change texture, length, and color during the development process.

Some kittens may be born with lighter or darker coloring, which can change over time.

Also, some Maine Coon kitten colors and patterns may become more defined. On the other hand, colors and patterns can fade over time.

Notably, while a Maine Coon kitten’s fur may change in color or pattern, her temperament and personality are likely to remain consistent throughout her life.


Maine Coon cats are a beloved breed known for their beautiful coat colors and patterns.

EMS codes for cats help categorize and describe Maine Coon color names on each Maine Coon cat.

The code includes categories that represent the basic color, pattern, eye color, and unique characteristics of the cat’s appearance.

Some of the rarer colors include solid white, cinnamon, smoke, and red.

With such a rainbow of stunning colors and patterns, there is a Maine Coon out there for every cat lover to fall in love with.

Related Questions

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