You may not know this, but the ticked fur coat that we Somalis (and Abyssinians) have is actually part of the tabby family of patterns! There are three other, more common tabby patterns — classic, mackerel and spotted. Of course, those aren’t important to us Somalis. In fact, having tabby stripes on our legs is considered a pattern fault and Somalis with stripes are generally considered “pet” quality, not “show” quality. Even though I am a pet, I have no stripes. My agouti has no breaks or flaws whatsoever.
But fancy cats as we are, there is one thing that permanently joins us with our tabby brothers and sisters: the tabby “M” on our foreheads. I call it “the mark of the tabby”:
Some humans think the “M” on our head is something mysterious. But there’s nothing mysterious about it — it stands for “meow!”