An adult smoke maine coon

The Smoke Maine Coon

The Maine Coon is a cat breed that’s available in a wide range of different colors.

That’s due to natural and breeder-conducted crossbreeding.

The smoke-colored Maine-based breed is available in patterns like tabby and tortie and is amazingly eye-catching compared to other colors like orange, silver, blue, and white.

a smoke maine coon on the bed

The Smokey Color In Maine Coons

What’s the Smoke Maine Coon?

The smoky fur actually looks black at first glance.

However, the main difference is in the hue of the undercoat. In fact, it’s tough to determine if the cat is black or smokey until the body has some white.

Smoke is a semi-solid color but also includes some “fade” on the feline’s undercoat.

Several of these Maine Coons also have fade on the chest, which can be visible when the cat is sleeping upside-down, for example.

The dark color is created by color-blocking genes.

The cat’s hairs seem to be a solid color but are actually banded. In other words, the hairs are dark at the top and light close to the bottom.

One way that breeders produce smoke-colored kitty cats by using the dominant silver gene and a recessive solid color.

These cats are similar to “shaded” and “chinchillas” although some technical differences exist.

a smoke maine coon kitten

Common Variants Of The Smoke Color

If you want a Maine Coon with a color that’s similar then here are some variants:

Black Variant

This is the closest variant of Smoke Maine Coons.

In fact, many felines that are judged to be black at first glance are actually smoke.

A black cat has thick black hair from head to toe. They also have black noses and brown eyes.

Unlike smoke fur, the undercoat of black cats is all black without any white. If the cat has some grey in the ear tufts and chest, it’s still black.

However, if there’s grey in the undercoat then it’s technically a smoky cat.

black smoke maine coon

Silver Variant

Here’s another variant that’s also close to smoke-colored Maine Coons.

The color is quite rare and includes smoky silver and silver cameo felines.

The black silver tabby is another popular Maine Coon breed.

However, the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA) doesn’t recognize the black silver variant.

Due to the complicated genetics involved silver is one of the rarest cat colors.

Other include Chinchilla, Chocolate, and Lilac.

Blue Variant

The blue color itself is complex because it’s not the hues we often think about like navy, royal, or sky.

There’s a touch of silver in these cats’ hair. In fact, the blue Maine Coon’s fur includes some smoky color in it although it’s technically not a smoke-colored cat.

It’s worth noting that Blue Maine Coons originate from Blue Smoke as well as Blue Tortie Smoke.

If you have a kitten, it might take several months until the undercoat develops.

That’s when you can determine whether it’s a true blue or smoky blue cat.

Red Variant

The Red Smoke Maine Coon is another variant that includes the smokey color.

It’s an interesting blend since it includes the breed’s brightest color and one of the darkest ones.

Red Maine Coons are among the most famous colors.

It’s worth noting the cat isn’t a bright red but instead an orange/ginger blend.

Fun Fact: 90% of red Maine Coons are male.

The reason is genetics make it rare for female cats to have this color.

The color is always on the X chromosome so in females the two X chromosomes usually combine to form a different hue.  

Cream Variant

Yet another variant of the Smoke Maine Coon is the Cream Smoke cat.

The color is close to the White breed but is slightly darker.

Cream can be a solid color or combined with other colors like Smoke or White.

In fact, it’s more common for the cats to be c combination of colors.

The most common version is the Cream Cameo Tabby.


Like other colors of Maine Coons, the Smoke color exists in different patterns.

They include solid, tabby, and tortie.

Tabby cats often have stripes like Garfield while the tortie pattern resembles a turtle shell.

smoke maine coon stretched out

Famous Smoke Maine Coons

Valkyrie is a young Black Smoke Maine Coon.

The Russian kitten recently became famous for her human-like facial expressions.

Valkyrie has been compared to the cats portrayed by human actors in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s famous musical “Cats.”

Valkyrie was born in January2 018. She’s named after the maidens in Norse mythology who served the god Odin.  

The kitten became publicly known when her cat breeder posted pictures of the interesting kitty cat on their website.

They then posted a video to their Instagram account. The video clip soon went viral.

Interestingly the original video got fewer than 9,000 views.

However, several social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter picked up the video.

One Facebook page racked up 9.8+ million views due to the famous smokey Maine Coon.

Users made several comments about the human-like cat.

They included ones like “extremely creepy” and “Renaissance paintings.”  

A big mystery is why the Russian cat is making the sad expression to begin with.

The reason is domesticated cats and dogs have evolved certain expressions to communicate with their owners.

One theory is the next evolutionary step would be for Fluffy and Fido to develop a more human-like faces so their owners can read the expressions easier.

While that’s debatable, there’s no question Valkyrie is cute and adorable.

It’s worth noting that the Russian cat has already been sold.

blue smoke maine coon

How Common Are Smoke Maine Coons?

The smoke color is relatively common like other solid colors including blue, red, and brown.

However, hybrid colors like Gray Smoke, Blue Smoke, Red Smoke, etc. are less common.

It’s important to research whether a certain color combination is accepted under the CFA’s standard.

Breeders often focus on particular breeds and colors.

So, if you want a Smokey Maine Coon search for a breeder whose specializations include Smoke.


The Smoke Maine Coon is easily one of the most eye-catching variants of the US-originated breed.

They’re close to black cats but actually include a lighter undercoat.

You can also see them in solids, stripes, dots, and blotches.

As always, it’s advisable to find a professional breeder like CFA members in order to get the best results.  

About the Author


My name is Ann and I have been looking after and breeding cats since 2013. I am currently the proud ownder of Alita, a female Maine Coon to whom I've dedicated this site. She has had 2 litters and is around 3 years old. We share adventures and stories together.

3 thoughts on “The Smoke Maine Coon

    • Author gravatar

      I live in New Zealand and am desperately trying to find a large Black Smoke male Maine Coon kitten( like the kittens from Oticami Cattery in China, which I cannot have due to New Zealand’s stupid animal import rules) You really seem to know so much about who has what type of kittens, that I would really appreciate your help in locating this particular kind of kitten.

      Please advise

      • Author gravatar

        EVERYBODY who loves MC cats wants one from Oticam they breed for the traits consumers want and there breeding stock are Magnificent ( Felis Gallery you tube). I personally plan on getting one when I can be sure of the safety during the Covid emergency and in the US they only ship to LAX I think they must do quarantine. The only mild disappointment I had about Oticam is Mr.Vivo is not being used for breeding anymore and earned his retirement as a favorite starring in Roberts videos however Preston is an upcoming breeder and he looks just like my Sasha.

    • Author gravatar

      Nobody breeds the Maine Coons like Oticam they specialize in breeding for the strong block face and long luxurious coats of contrasting colors, smoke colors including red smoke, and polydactylism. Even though this is a US cat breed our breeders Are breeding cats that our substandard compared to theirs . I doubt this will make a difference in New Zealand but my smoke is from an Armenian/Russian breeder!

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