Mitted Cats Explained

Caitlin Dempsey


A black cat with white on the paws and chin walking across a light blue rope rug.

When describing a color coat pattern on some cats, you may hear these cats as being “mitted” or “having mittens”.

Mitted or mittens refers to a cat with paws that are a different color than their legs. Also referred to as having “socks”.

Mitted cats are also often referred as having “gloves” on the front two paws and “booties” on the back two paws.

Black mitted cat

A black mitted cat is a cat who is all black except for white on their paws. This means that the only white color on the cat is found on their paws. The rest of the cat is solid black.

A closeup of a black cat's legs with white paws.
Black mitted cats have black fur everywhere except for white paws. Photo: © Media Whale Stock/

Other mitted cat patterns

A black cat with white on the paws and chin walking across a light blue rope rug.
A tuxedo cat with mitted paws. Photo: Caitlin Dempsey.

Mitted cats are more obvious with black and white, or piebald, cats. This is because of the high color contrast between having black legs and white paws.

The visibility of a cat having mittens depends on the color contrast. In this female orange tabby, the bright white mittens are visible in contrast with the dark orange and light orange tabby coat pattern.

An orange tabby cat with a white chest and paws stares up.
An orange tabby cat with mitted feet. Photo: Caitlin Dempsey.

Mitted purebred cats

Of the cat breeds, ragdoll cats have several color variations that are mitted. The ragdoll cat seems to be the only purebred cat described by the Cat Fancier’s Association that is allowed to have mitted feet.

According to the Cat Fancier’s Association mitted ragdoll cats must have: Front feet: white mittens present on both feet, evenly matched, preferably going up to and around the wrist joint. Back legs: white must go up to and around the hocks entirely, extending no higher than mid-thigh.”

Ragdolls mitted coat fur patterns include:

  • Blue Mitted Ragdoll Cat
  • Chocolate Mitted Ragdoll
  • Lilac Mitted Ragdoll Cat
  • Seal Mitted Ragdoll Cat
Seal mitted ragdoll cat by the window with bokeh lights.
A seal mitted ragdoll cat. Photo: © Nikki/


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About the author
Caitlin Dempsey
Caitlin Dempsey holds both a master's in Geography from UCLA and a Master of Library and Information Science. She is the editor of and an avid researcher of geography and feline topics. A lifelong cat owner, Caitlin currently has three rescued cats: an orange tabby, a gray tabby, and a black cat.