Why Are Cats Born With Blue Eyes?
- Pieter Maas
Blue eyes in cats are generally caused by a lack of pigment, and all kittens are born with blue eyes because cats don’t develop eye pigmentation until they’re around six weeks old, when the production of melanin kicks in.
Do kittens born with blue eyes stay blue?
One Week –
One week old kittens will have closed eyes, but no umbilical cord. Around 7 days, the ear canals will slowly begin to open. Around 8-12 days, the eyes will slowly begin to open. Never attempt to pry open a kitten’s eyes; let them open naturally. All kittens will be born with baby blue eyes, which will change to their adult eye color as they age. By one week of age, the kitten should have doubled her birth weight. One week old kittens cannot regulate body temperature. During this time it is critical to provide a gentle heat source to keep the kitten warm and stable. The kitten’s environment should be roughly 85 degrees at this time. Average one week old kitten weight: 150-250 grams One week old kitten care schedule: orphans of this age should be bottle fed every 2-3 hours, including overnight. One week old kittens will also need to be stimulated to go to the bathroom,
What eye color is the rarest for cats?
How Rare is Your Cat’s Eye Colour? – Pembina Valley Humane Society What colour are your cat’s eyes? There are many different cat eye colours, which is determined by the amount of melanin in their DNA, handed down form their mother and father. The colour or a cat’s eyes, like the colour of its coat, is often hereditary.
- Have you heard the old wives’ tale that feeding a cat fish causes its eye colour to change? Well, that’s false! Kittens always have blue eyes, but the adult colour develops at about six to seven weeks.
- By the age of twelve weeks, a cat’s final eye colour will be fully developed.
- The most common eye colour for cats is yellow/amber, followed by hazel eyes.
Cats with blue eyes actually don’t have any melanin in their irises! Blue eyes are actually clear, but we see the blue colour due to light reflecting around the curved sides of their irises. Blue eyes are also more common in white cats. If your cat has orange eyes, there is a chance that it is a descendant of a breed developed by the British; they wanted an eye colour that could stand out in vivid relief against any coat colour.
Maine Coons can often have orange eyes. Copper is the darkest eye colour you’ll see in cats. Their eyes will be light brown with tones of red and orange. Sometimes there may be flecks of yellow, green, or orange. This is a rarer colour than some others, and while it’s distinguishable from orange, it’s just as unusual.
And then you get cats with two different coloured eyes, also known as heterochromia iridium, which refers to the fact that each iris is a different colour. This can be inherited, congenital (a genetic “mistake” as the cat’s embryo is developing), or the cause of an accident or injury.
The most rare eye colouring in a cat is dichromatic, where the eyes will have a combination of two distinct colours within both eyes. It’s caused by the cat having different levels of melanin in distinct sections of their irises. Sometimes, the eyes will have a distinct oval of one colour nearer the pupil, which then blends out into another colour.
Other times, the colours will be split into sections, so a quarter or half of the eye will be one colour, and the remaining section will be a different colour. Whatever eye colour your cat has, it’s absolutely perfect! It’s the combination of each cat’s eye colour, coat colour, and personality that makes us love them, no matter what! : How Rare is Your Cat’s Eye Colour? – Pembina Valley Humane Society
Are cats with blue eyes rare?
Cats have some of the most beautiful eyes in the animal kingdom, but when they’re blue they’re particularly striking. Because they don’t develop eye pigmentation until they’re about six weeks old, all kittens are actually born with blue eyes, but it is rare to have them as adult cats.
Perhaps, why they are so intriguing? If you want to adopt a cat that keeps those baby blues into adulthood, your best bet is to pick one of the following breeds: Balinese, Birman, Himalayan, Javanese, Ragdoll, Siamese, Snowshoe, Tonkinese, Turkish Angora, or Ojos Azules. However, it’s worth keeping in mind that not all these cats are necessarily guaranteed blue peepers, according to Catster,
Much like humans, a feline’s eye color can change over time, especially while your pet is young. But no matter how long our beloved kitties stay blue-eyed, we can’t help but be captivated by this (sometimes short-lived, sometimes long-lasting) feature.
Do black cats ever have blue eyes?
Do black cats with blue eyes exist? – Yes, black cats with blue eyes have graced the world with their existence, but unfortunately, they are on the rare side. The only black cat breed with genuine blue eyes is the Ojos Azules, a name that pays tribute to this feline’s beautiful eyes. Although we don’t know the exact number of Ojos Azules cats, we do know they’re extremely uncommon.
Do all kittens eyes start out blue?
Look into your cat’s eyes. What color are they? The vast majority of adult cat eye colors exist on a spectrum ranging from green, gold and yellow on one side to orange, copper, and brown on the other, with a host of variations and shades between. But what about cats with blue eyes ? All kittens are born with nominally blue eyes, and some cats retain this apparent hue throughout life.
- Why do I qualify a color with words like “nominally” and “apparent”? And when do kittens’ eyes change color and why? The range of blues that we see observe in cat eyes are a result of refracted light, rather than a function of pigmentation.
- While we perceive this color of cat eye as blue, it is not a color in itself, but a lack of color combined with a refraction of light.
What produces other eye colors in cats is the degree of transparency of the outer eye along with the available pigment in a cat’s iris. Let’s answer, “When do kittens’ eyes change color,” and provide some insight into the how and why of kittens’ eyes changing color. Kittens are born with their eyes shut. Photography © IpekMore | iStock / Getty Images Plus.
Do blue eyes stay in cats?
It’s not just the fur or the purr that cats use to hold us spellbound: It’s those eyes. Whether they are blue, green, gold, copper or some variation of those shades, a cat’s eyes are one of his most beautiful features. Here’s how they come to be that way.
- Eye color is genetically linked to coat color.
- Ittens are born with blue eyes, which may stay that way or change color as the kitten matures.
- For instance, all pointed cats have blue eyes.
- Cats who are solid white or mostly white may have blue, green, gold or copper eyes.
- The most common eye colors range from greenish-yellow to gold.
You may have heard that white cats are always deaf. Not necessarily. Some are, and some aren’t. White cats with blue eyes are more likely to be deaf, however, than white cats with gold or green eyes. Deafness is associated only with the dominant white gene, not the white spotting gene, says feline geneticist Leslie A.
Lyons. “There’s a high association of dominant white with deafness and dominant white with blue eyes, and if you are dominant white with blue eyes, you’re more likely to be deaf.” Between 10 and 20 percent of white cats with eyes of other colors may be deaf. White cats with only one blue eye may be deaf only in the ear that’s on the same side as the blue eye.
Eyes with the brilliant copper of a shiny new penny or the bright green of an emerald usually are the result of selective breeding, but genes don’t discriminate. Those eye colors can appear in cats without a pedigree as well. Pedigreed cats noted for their distinctive eye color include the Burmese, with large, round gold eyes; the Tonkinese, with sparkling aqua eyes; the Egyptian mau, with gooseberry green eyes; and the Russian blue, with vivid green eyes.
- Some cats have “odd eyes,” meaning one eye is blue and one is green or gold.
- The scientific term for this is heterochromia, from the Greek words “hetero,” meaning “different,” and “chromia,” referring to color.
- The difference in color might not be noticeable in a kitten, but changes gradually as the kitten moves toward adulthood.
We usually see odd eyes in white cats or cats with the white spotting gene, such as bicolor and tuxedo cats. Breeds in which odd eyes are common include Turkish angoras and Turkish vans. A description of angoras stated that the eyes should be “as green as the lake and as blue as the sky.” Other breeds that may sport odd eyes are Persian, sphynx, Oriental shorthair and Japanese bobtail cats.
Odd eyes occur when a dominant white gene (meaning it masks other colors) or a white spotting gene blocks the concentration and distribution of natural pigments within the iris tissues during development. It’s unusual to see odd eyes in cats who lack both the dominant white and the white spotting genes, but it can happen.
An unusual and attractive look is the dichromatic, or dichroic, eye, usually seen in white cats. That’s one with two colors in one iris. For instance, the eye might be half green and half blue or have a green iris encircled by yellow. One or both eyes can be dichromatic, sometimes with each eye mirroring the other.
Do completely black cats exist?
One in 22 –
- There are as many as 22 recognized breeds that can have solid black coloring but the only all-black feline is the Bombay cat.
- The breed was developed in the 1950s by crossing Sable Burmese with black American Shorthairs with the aim to create a cat that resembled a miniature black panther.
- Well if you can have a lion in your living, why not a panther!
Do female cats have blue eyes?
Even though blue eyes usually occur in cats with either white fur or point markings, they can also be found in cats with a different fur color across various breeds, in both genders. Let us take a look at some of the cat breeds which are blessed with glinting blue eyes.
Are kittens eyes still blue at 8 weeks?
Why do kittens have blue eyes? – Ultimately, eye color comes down to melanin. What’s that? Melanin is the pigment that affects the color of a human’s skin, hair, and eyes. In our kitty’s case, it helps determine their fur and eye color. Melanocytes (special skin cells) make melanin.
More melanocytes increase the melanin levels in a cat’s eyes. These cats will ultimately have a darker eye color, such as copper. If a cat is over six weeks old and still has blue eyes, that means they don’t have melanocytes or pigment in their eyes. Don’t worry about a very young kitten that is four to six weeks old, though.
These babies have blue eyes because their melanocytes aren’t functioning just yet. They will as the furball progress through kittenhood.
What color eyes do grey cats have?
Russian Blue – The Russian Blue cat is long, slender, and muscular. They sport a blue-grey double coat that is plush and silky to the touch, making them appear somewhat larger than they are. As kittens, their eyes are yellow; with age, they become a vivid green. This cat is playful yet reserved—they will often take to one person and resist strangers and new environments.
They’re very nitpicky about hygiene and having a clean litter box, In fact, they may not even enter the litter box if it is dirty. (This is where a self-cleaning litter box comes in handy!) The Russian Blue is known for their love of food and may face obesity if allowed to eat as much as they want. The Russian Blue is believed to have originated in Russia; indeed, the breed’s warm, thick coat suggests that they were long accustomed to surviving in a cold climate,
According to some legends, the Russian Blue was at one time the target of hunters, who likened their luxuriant fur to the fur of seals.
Are kittens eyes still blue at 8 weeks?
Beautiful Blue Eyes – Most kittens, when their eyes open at about 2 weeks old, have light blue eyes, and Johnson said that over the next month or two the eye color changes to the color it will be throughout her adult life. Most adult cats’ eyes are somewhere on the color continuum from green to yellow to orange to copper.
And some breeds, like Siamese or Tonkinese, have blue eyes. You might also hear blue-green, hazel, gold and amber as descriptions of cats’ eye colors. My cats’ eyes have run the gamut, and my favorites were Jack’s beautiful blue eyes and Tripper’s intense amber eyes. As a kitten’s eyes change from blue to her mature eye color, you might see flecks of all the different colors.
These color flecks come from the pigment cells, also called melanocytes, in the eye’s iris and, as with humans, genetics dictate the final colors. The two layers in the iris that determine eye color are the stroma and the epithelium, and the pigmented cells are found throughout both layers.
The stroma is the outer layer and has loosely arranged pigment cells. Beneath the stroma is the epithelium, which has tightly packed pigment cells. Both contribute to the pigment, but in different amounts. A lot of pigment creates orange or gold eyes; less pigment ends up green and no pigment in both layers turns out blue.
Beyond genetics, neither coat color nor gender affect a kitten’s eye color, Johnson said. Some cat breeds, such as Siamese, will keep their blue eyes into adulthood, and it’s perfectly fine if your kitten’s eyes do not change color. “If the eyes appear shiny and healthy, and the cats can see, then it just happens that the eye color was blue,” Johnson says, adding that eyesight usually is mature around the same time as full weaning — by about 8 weeks old.
Most cat breeds, however, experience a gradual eye color change those first three months to their final color. And it can take up to a year for a kitten’s eyes to finish changing and darkening to her mature eye color and hue. In some cases, cats end up with two differently colored eyes, such as one blue and one yellow, orange, brown or green.
This is called complete heterochromia or, more commonly, odd-eyed. While any type of cat can develop odd eyes, it mostly occurs in solid or mostly white cats, such as Turkish Angora, Turkish Van and Japanese Bobtail. “As long as there’s no discharge, the eyes are clear and the cat can see, you just have an unusual gene combination,” Johnson says.
- If you’re worried, though, it’s always good to take them in to the vet for a look.” You might have heard that blue-eyed or odd-eyed cats are prone to blindness; however, this is a misconception.
- But white cats can be more prone to hereditary deafness, and the concern increases if they also have one or both blue eyes.
And interestingly, the deafness tends to occur in the ear on the same side as the blue eye.
Will my white kittens eyes stay blue?
Take Care of Your Kittens – Caring for a kitten is relatively easy, especially if an attentive, loving mother cat is involved! Mother cats take very good care of their babies and will look after their every need, including feeding, bathing, and staying warm.
They even stimulate them in order to make them go to the bathroom! If you are currently caring for a kitten and it appears to be lethargic or not eating, take it to the veterinarian as soon as possible as the mortality rate for newborn kittens is very high! Kittens are adorable and loving little balls of fur that, if cared for properly, grow up to be loving and adorable cats! Meow! This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge.
It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.
© 2009 Cygstarz Mariah on June 14, 2019: Good info!!!! Very helpful Kyile on July 16, 2018: Kyile bookpaw on June 22, 2018: i have a kitten with the nice looking fur it is black with sun burst orange on her paw Karl on July 15, 2017: How long does it take to get a kitten to adjust to new food? She has been treated for worms and the vet says she does not have them any more.
She still gets diarrhea and the vet gave us an oral medicine for the diarrhea and id did not do much. So the vet prescribed food made by Science diet and we have to give her carbon pills. It has been 3 days on the new food and carbon pills and still has diarrhea.
- Jennifer on July 07, 2017: My cat just had one kitten and was caring for it but now after continuous meowing and attention getting tricks, I agreed to let her outside.
- She was so insistent! Anyway, I thought she just had to use the bathroom, so I let her out.
- Now she has been gone several hours.,Is she coming back? What do I do? What about her kitten!? Lisa Wilson on June 08, 2017: 1 out of a litter of 3 kittens, has bright blue eyes.
Is it going to be blind ir deaf? It acts a little funny but nothing too out of the ordinary. jamie on November 17, 2016: are orange tabby kittens orange at birth Adrian on October 20, 2016: I had to take my kitten away from her mom around 8 weeks, is that okay? The home she was in she was not in the best situation.
The kids would throw her against the wall, and even choke her. I couldn’t take anymore of it, so I collected my kitten and left. She’s going on 10 weeks now. Adam D on October 16, 2016: So, You mentioned if I have any questions, go ahead and ask. We found two kittens (already took to vet). They are healthy and we are taking care of them.
They are now roughly 4 weeks old. I’ve taken care of them for a week. One of them is a loving little fur ball. And the other loves to suck on my finger. However, he also digs in my hand with his nails, getting very excited and it hurts. At what Age can we teach him no? And also how do we teach “no”? Any info would help! Alyssa on October 03, 2016: Actually not all cats eyes change color.
- Siamese have blue eyes their whole life! Kate on August 23, 2016: Hi,I have been looking after a kitten that was abandoned.
- I have had her for a week now so I believe that she is close to three weeks because her eyes were open when she was found.
- She always wants to be held.
- Lately I have noticed that she runs into things, and only responds to sound.
For example if a stand right in front of her she wont come but if I talk or tap my feet she comes running in the direction of the sound. I have waved my hand in front of her and she wont blink like all my other cats/kittens. How can I be sure if she is blind? Also, she is not white, but a tabby.
jfurrylover on August 14, 2016: 8 weeks old I have an all white kitty blued eyed I have 8 furries all together doggies and cats but I heard if u hv a white kitten with blue eyes changes are high to being deaf or blind 🙁 is this true and how do I tell if he already is or not little salamander on May 17, 2016: I love jesseica Jia yin on May 17, 2016: today wen’t to my mum’s friend s house and I saw a black kitty.
I LOVE IT because it is fluffy and cute and aso CUTE Jia feng on May 17, 2016: I have a friend that has a kitten and iv’e just came to her house the kitten is called Max he is so CUTE I love him p.s he’s so FLUFY ;] jia yin on May 17, 2016: why are kittens differents colours jia feng on May 17, 2016: why are kittens so playful/plz anser this questions.
- Angel on April 27, 2016: Hi, a friend found a kitten in weeds behind their home.
- We can not find the mother, we can get kitten to eat some wet food but not to drink.
- Any suggestions? ^^ on July 18, 2015: The kitten I’m about to adopt has black panther coloring, where it looks black but is actually reddish brown with black stripes.
The little tyke has the most iridescent blue eyes I have ever seen- the whole litter does. They are a mixed breed, and many on the males were strays. I know they do have some Himalayan, and their great, great some-odd grandfather was stark white. I’m crossing my fingers that this kit will keep his(or her) eye color.
- Thinking of naming him Bagheera.
- Hannah on July 10, 2015: My family just got this beautiful Calico kitten with bright blue eyes!!! Her name is Emmie, and loves people! She isn’t afraid of loud noises, and is such a cuddle bug! Only our 1 yr old male (neutered) cat, Zeus does not like the “New Addition” one bit.
He doesn’t like our pup Tank, either. I would appreciate some advice on how to teach Zeus that ” Sorry, your gonna be living with them your whole life!” Thank you! Cygstarz (author) from Maryland on June 30, 2014: Tish: So glad your new kitten’s bathroom habits are getting better! I’m sure she will only improve as she gets older.
- Take care! Tish on June 28, 2014: Thank you she is doing a lot better today with litter she goes to the litter most of the time and is pottying in it mostly every few times she will potty right outside of the litter but for most times she is now using it.
- Cygstarz (author) from Maryland on June 28, 2014: Hi Tish! First of all.THANK YOU for taking in an abandoned kitten.
I’ve helped many abandoned/stray cats and kittens over the years so I know what you are dealing with! A few years ago I cared for five kittens and none of them understood how to use the litter box. Be patient.most kittens (if not all) eventually “get it.” For my tough cases, I bought a special litter called “Cat Attract.” For some reason.cats and kittens love this litter and I will admit that it works! Whenever I have a cat that does not want to go in the box.I pull out the Cat Attract Litter.
- I guess it has a scent that cats like.
- It is expensive.so I usually mix it in with a cheaper litter.
- Another thing you can do is put some cat poop/ pee in the litter box and then show the kitten.
- I know.it is gross to pick up old poop.but hey.if you have to clean it up anyway.might as well throw it in the litter box and teach kitty a lesson on where to go! I’ve even gone so far as to take the kitten’s little paw and scoop litter over the poop.
Many kittens that are abandoned early in life are never taught how to do basic cat behaviors.covering their waste would be one example. I hope these little tricks work. Here is some more info that may help: http://kittencareguide.com/why-wont-my-cat-use-its.
- Tish on June 27, 2014: So yesterday I was finally able to get the wild young abandoned kitten from our neighborhood to come in our house of course by me hiding behind the door.
- I’ve been working with her she is a big sweetie loves attention and giving kisses, which is a big change from her biting and clawing me yesterday but of course she is still a little scared when reaching to pick her up.
My question is what is quickest way to litter train I’ve put her in to sniff box but she keeps running to corners to pee and poop. This last time when she started peeing I picked her up and placed her in the litter and she finished peeing in the box. But any other tips to train her? Cygstarz (author) from Maryland on September 02, 2013: Hi Debbie.Thank you for your comment.
- Do you know of an animal rescue group in your area that you can call to come and get the kittens? Kittens are usually adopted out very easily (people can’t resist cause they are so darn cute!!).
- If you don’t know of an animal rescue group then simply google cat rescue (and the area in which you live) and see what comes up.
Then.start sending emails to the various groups and see if they will help with the kittens. It is important that they are caught rather early so they can be socialized and SPAYED OR NEUTERED!!! If you don’t have these kittens “fixed” you will have MANY more kittens soon.
- Good luck and let me know if you need help finding a rescue group.
- Debbie on September 01, 2013: a stray cat had kittens under our front porch.its about 4 in.opening.we never knew this until we came home one day and there were 6 babies laying on ground in front of the opening enjoying the sunshine.2 of them come out all the time.we haven’t bothered them.what should we do.we cant have them.
Sabrina on May 05, 2013: My sisters cat had 5 kittens 4 weeks ago. The mom had to be put to sleep. I got one of the kittens and I have fell in love with him. I rub his bottom with a warm rag to get him to pee but I can’t get him to poop. What can I do? karen on September 30, 2012: my cat had four lovely kittens five weeks ago.two white girls one ginger boy and one ginger girl.the white ones and the ginger boy still have blue eyes.is it possible for a ginger to have blue eyes.they are sky blue and the ginger girls have turned green.
- Cygstarz (author) from Maryland on March 21, 2012: Hi Deanna.thank you for your comment/question.
- It is not uncommon for older cats to lose their hearing.
- The ASPCA Website has a great article about this subject.
- Here is the link: http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/cat-care/deafness.as.
- My cat is losing his hearing as well.
I have to speak very loudly if I want him to hear me! Also.I try to get his attention before approaching him so that I don’t scare him. Take a look at the ASPCA article.hope it helps! Deanna on March 20, 2012: I have a black cat with white markings and the most beautiful BLUE eyes.
- My children and i think she may have gone or is going deaf.
- She does not respond like she used to when we call her or even to loud noises.
- Is that normal? 7 Week Kitten on March 17, 2012: I am going to be getting a kitten next week, he will be 7 weeks.
- The owner said he eats dry cat food and uses the litter box.
Is it ok for me to take him? What can I do to make sure he is healthy and eating enough? Also, how often to feed him? Do I just keep his bowl full? Amy on August 13, 2011: There is a breed of cat called Ojos Azules that can produce a black cat with blue eyes.
- However, they are extremely rare and if you are lucky enough to find one the cost of the cat would be more than most can afford.
- The down side is that in order to produce these black haired, blue eyed kittens many die.
- They are born with many genetic flaws which is most likely the reason for the hefty price tag.
I would love one of these cats, but I do not wish for so many kittens to die or have life long medical problems for eye color. Callie on August 01, 2011: The question: “My kitten’s eyes are blue. Will they stay that way?” is a very interesting question.
White cats with blue eyes are usually blind or deaf. If they are born with blue eyes, they will stay blue-eyed. If they are born with blue eyes and turn green, then its still possible that they be blind, or deaf, but they might not be. Take.an orange cat like mine for example. He has blue eyes now, but they are turning green.
Orange cats usually have green or amber (gold) eyes. It is unusual for cats of any color but white to have blue eyes. Black cats cannot have blue eyes, think about it. Have you ever seen a black cat with blue eyes before? Or a gray cat? Sorry this was long, but I hope it helps.
Source(s) Lapel Animal Clinic Vet (Dr. Vicki) ~Complain and Remain, Praise and Raise. Focus on the Good~ Cygstarz (author) from Maryland on November 05, 2010: Hi Laura.thank you for your question! It is best for a kitten to stay with their mom for at least nine or ten weeks.however, with that being said, if the kitten is eating solid food and drinking water.it sould be ok.
When my foster cat had kittens, one of them was adopted at 7 or 8 weeks of age and she is doing fine! If I were you, I would pay close attention to the kitten for the first few weeks that it is away from mom. Make sure that the kitten is eating and drinking! It is also important to make sure that the kitten is kept warm! If you have any questions or experience any problems.contact a vet.
- Eventually you will have to take your kitten to the vet to get shots and possibly dewormed.
- Good luck and congrats on your new addition.
- Laura on November 05, 2010: A friend of mine’s cat recently had kittens, probably about 6 or 7 weeks ago.
- Due to personal problems, my friend is unable to care for the mother cat and kittens.
All cats and kittens have been spoken for, including the 6 week old kitten I have claimed. Is it irresponsible of me to bring the kitten home now, or do you think he would be alright? Apparently kitten is already trying solid food, and he is getting the hang of using the litter box.