How Kittens Get Their Eye Color
Attaining a specific eye color is an interesting genetic phenomenon. Before we try and understand when and why do kittens eye colors change, its crucial to back up our knowledge of some basic science.
Genetically, there are two significant factors that influence eye color in kittens. These are iris pigmentation and blue refraction. Within the iris, there are cells known as melanocytes which are responsible for producing pigment. The more pigment the iris has, the darker in color the eyes will be. Blue eyes have the least amount of pigment.
All animals also have a tapetum lucidum, which is essentially a thin layer of tissue behind the retina. This is the area where light from the outside will be refracted and any light entering the eye is reflected back onto the eye. In cats with darker-colored eyes, this reflection will typically be yellow or green. In cats with blue eyes, it is red.
Why Do My Cats Eyes Change Color
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I can definitely admit that Ive spent much of my time looking into my cats beautiful eyes, noticing how the shades of yellow and green create a unique pattern.
If youve had a cat since they were a kitten then you might have noticed a significant change in hue and color as they grew older, or perhaps youve noticed that the color of their eye suddenly changed during adulthood and youre wondering if this is normal.
Why do my cats eyes change color?
Kittens are usually born with blue eyes, but between 4 to 10 weeks the production of melanin could turn their eyes into another color. If your cats eye color changes when theyre older then this is likely caused by eye trauma, disease, or a normal part of the aging process in some cases.
Lets take a closer look at the reasons your cats eyes might be changing and the possible dangers lurking behind this sudden color transition!
Also Do You Know At What Age Do Kittens Get Their True Eye Color
As sight develops, cats eyes often begin to change, and take on a range of different colors, from browns and yellows to greens, oranges and ambers. This change will likely begin somewhere between three to eight weeks of age. Itll be complete by the time your kitten turns three months old.
Generally What is the rarest eye color for kittens? The rarest cat eye color is hazel or orange. Cats tend to have low melanin in their eyes which allow them to have light colored eyes. Feral cats and cats such as the Scottish Fold tend to have these colored eyes thanks to the high levels of melanin in their eyes.
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What Is The Rarest Eye Color For Cats
While cats start with blue eyes, its one of the rarest eye colors for a cat to have when they mature. Theyre more common in white cats, but even then, theres no guarantee. Another uncommon eye color for cats, if not as rare as blue, is orange- and copper-colored eyes.
Other eye colors are simply far more common.
Keeping Your Cats Eyes Healthy
Just as with humans, cats can also suffer from a range of eye diseases. Most are easily treated with antibiotics and other medications if caught early.
Looking after your kitten and ensuring you give her a healthy diet helps with eye health. In addition, watch for any unusual discharge or dirt around the eye area. Using a small piece of cotton wool soaked in warm water, gently wipe any bits of dirt.
As your kitten matures into an adult youll have a wonderful and loving companion for many years to come. Whether moggy or pedigree, cats make great pets.
I hope this article has helped you understand a bit more about kitten eye development and answered your question when do kittens eyes change color? If youve enjoyed this post please share. Feel free to share this pin on your pets board.
Also, if you have any further questions or would like to share experiences, please leave your comment below.
Wishing you a purrfect day:)
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Cats With Two Different Colored Eyes
A cat can also have two different colored eyes. This condition is called heterochromia, and can be seen in different species, even humans. This happens when a white or white spotting gene blocks the distribution and concentration of pigment in the iris during development. That’s why each eye will have its own different color. In some cases, this might happen to one single eye.
Learn more in our article about odd-eyed cats.
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- The best thing you can do is buy a stainless steel flea comb and gently comb each kitten in order to remove as many fleas as possible. I know this can be a slow process. However, until the kittens are older, there isn’t much more you can do.
- If you wish, you can give your baby a sponge bath using warm water and Dawn Dish Washing Soap . Simply wet down your kitten very carefully with the soap-and-water mixture, and then gently comb him with the special flea comb. Be sure to rinse the kitten completely and never put his or her head underwater! It is also very importantthat you dry the kitten completely!
If the kittens you are caring for have a major flea infestation, take them to the vet as fleas can suck the blood right out of a kitten. If you are only dealing with a few fleas and the kitten’s health does not seem to be affected, comb, wash, and keep an eye on it!
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Why Are Kittens Born With Blue Eyes
Heres the thing: the blue tint in their eyes is an illusion. Kittens are born with their eyes sealed shut as they will be sensitive and unable to process light from birth. Because of this, the pigments have not yet reacted to the light which will influence the kittens eyes final color. This means that their eyes will need time to develop and adjust.
So its entirely probable that their adult color will be a drastic change to their original baby blue eye color. Although this doesnt mean that some cats eyes wont stay blue, however, most kittens eyes do develop into the light green or yellow color we are most familiar with.
Kitty Eyes Adjustment As They Expand
Rowyn C. Rose is a science communications expert at Basepaws, a pet cat DNA test brand. She informs Daily Paws that pet cats eyes have a pigment of specialized cells called melanocytes located in the iris . The front layer of the iris, known as the stroma, soaks up longer wavelengths as well as reflects much shorter ones, based on the amount of melanocytes..
This is why most grown-up felines have extra diverse eye colors: There are a lot more melanocytes in the pigment. But not when theyre born. An overwhelming bulk have blue eyes since pigment does not start to build up in the iris until the initial few weeks of life, Rose claims..
Tarina L. Anthony, DVM, is a long time professional of feline-exclusive medication, and also owner and clinical supervisor of Aurora Feline Healthcare Facility and Resort in Aurora, Colo. She states that kittens eyes open when they have to do with 7 10 days old, however anywhere between 2 and also 16 days has actually been reported. This is additionally your very first opportunity to validate eye health and wellness. Anthony suggests making sure kittycats eyes are without discharge, as upper respiratory infections prevail in infants with ignorant immune systems. Their eyes may be mostly closed but should not be gooed shut..
Forecasting Kitten Eye Colors.
Can you do it? Anthony claims not most likely, unless youve confirmed the heritage of the tom as well as queen 100 percent.
Worrisome Pet Cat Eye Colors.
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Kittens Eyes: What To Know About The First Month
The first step to answering, When do kittens eyes change color? is to know that their eyes arent even open at birth. Upon exiting the womb and entering the whelping box, a newborn kittens eyes are sealed shut and functionally useless. Like their coatless bodies and closed ears, a kittens eyes are not fully developed at birth. The only senses that work straight out of the gate are those of touch and smell. With mothers assistance and protection, a kitten is able to eat and sleep. These activities provide the fuel and raw materials for growth across the board, including preparing the eyes for sight.
Every kitten develops at a different pace, but typically, a kittens eyes are sufficiently mature to open during the second week of life, anywhere from 7-14 days after birth. Once the eyelids begin separating, they may take two or three days to fully open. Even then, open doesnt mean functional. Part of kitten eye maturation is developing the ability to process light and interpret sensory input.
For the first month to five weeks, a kitten can see about as well as Han Solo fresh out of his carbonite prison in Return of the Jedi, when everything appeared as a light blur. Also like Han Solo, who stumbled about a bit at first, hand-eye or paw-eye coordination is still very likely a work in progress for a kitten. Most kittens will achieve full ocular and visual functionality at some point between weeks 5 and 7.
Different Eye Colors Of A Kitten
1. Blue eyes
In rare cases, your kitten might retain its blue eyes into adulthood. This may happen because of low or no melanin production in the iris.
Blue eyes are clear, but the light reflecting around the rounded edges of a cats pigment-free irises is what makes us see the blue color.
The Siamese cat is an example of a colorpoint cat.
Other breeds that develop with the Siamese as a major genetic contributor also have blue eyes as adult cats. These are:
If blue is your favorite eye color in a cat, and you want your kitten to have this eye color when it grows, go for these above feline breeds, as they will retain their baby blue eye color into adulthood.
However, keep in mind that white cats with two blue eyes have a high tendency of being deaf. A grey cat with blue eyes has a bit of melanin in its fur, but there is completely no melanin on its eyes.
2. Odd eyes
Another unique situation when it comes to cat eye color is odd-eyes which occur in three types:
- Complete heterochromia: This is where one eye is blue, and the other brown or green.
- Sectoral heterochromia: You can see two eye colors are present in the iris.
- Central heterochromia: Two colors can be seen on the iris, a central color that surrounds the pupil and a different color on the outside portion of the iris.
3. Copper or yellow eyes
Most people assume their cats eye color is brown when it is actually dark copper, or dark orange.
There is no cat with black eyes.
4. Green eyes
5. Yellow or orange
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Why Do Cats Have Different Colors Of Eyes
Cat eye color is linked to melanin The color of a cats eyes will depend on the levels of melanin that have been passed onto them in genes from their mother and father cats. Melanin also controls the levels of pigment in the skin and fur. The more melanin your cat inherits, the darker their fur will be.
When Do Kittens Eyes Change Color
Whether your cats just given birth, or youre adopting a kitten, you may be asking when do kittens eyes change color? In this post youll discover all about newborn kittens eyes. Including, when they open, when to expect a change in color, and if its possible to determine your cats eye color.
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Why Do Kitten Eyes Change Color
Before we talk about older cats going through eye color changes its important we go back into their kittenhood.
During the first weeks of a cats life, theyre very fragile not only due to their small size but the fact that they are born with their eyes closed and without the ability to hear. Thankfully cats develop quite quickly and between 8 to 12 days their eyes will begin to slowly open.
No matter what shade of color your cats eyes are now, all kittens are born with baby blue eyes, and as veterinarians explain at 7 weeks of age their eyes will change to an adult eye color. At 8 weeks of age, your cats eyes will have evolved into the color that theyll have for the rest of their lives. Some cats will maintain their blue eyes, or they might transition into shades of green, yellow, orange, copper, and hazel.
I know its hard to imagine that this copper-eyed kitty used to have blue eyes as a kitten!
This change happens during the developmental period, and just like in human eyes, the color of the eyes depends on how much pigment melanin there is in the iris. This protein releases cells called melanocytes and it is the same cell that also affects their skin and fur.
The more pigment there is the darker your cats eyes will be, which means that blue-eyed cats have very little to no melanin. Just like with fur, the color of a cats eyes depends on the genetics that are passed on to the cat from their parents.
What Should I Do If My Cats Eyes Change Color
Noticing that your kittens eyes are no longer blue, can come as a surprise, but most likely its a natural change their eyes go through as they grow older. If you feel that the change seems unnatural, the eyes look red, or puffy then its best you take the kitten to the vet.
Even if your kittens eye color change turns out to be this normal process I still think the visit to the veterinarian was worth it. Kittens are resilient but they can also be fragile so an extra vet examination will never hurt!
If on the other hand, youve found that your adult cats eyes have changed color, or shade then once again a vet visit is the best choice. A variation in your cats iris color could be a sign of illness, that goes way beyond their eyes, or it could be a serious eye infection.
The sooner you take your cat for an examination you can help your vet treat a possible life-threatening medical condition or simply ease your cats discomfort from a superficial eye scratch. Self-diagnosing is never a good choice because a professional knows the best and safest ways to ensure that your cats eyes are healthy!
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Will The Eyes Change Color Again In Adulthood
Nope! At about 8 weeks, your kittens eye have come full circle. If you are wondering when do kittens eyes change color or if they will change color again, no they dont. at this point, they are fully mature and fully functional.
Even though your kittens eyes have now matured, that doesnt mean they are safe from the kittens own clumsiness. The eyes might change color as a result of the infection of the cornea or also as a result of an infection called uveitis.
With a cornea infection, the cornea will turn blue. With Uveitis, symptoms include the affected eye being red, discharge, change in eye color and cloudiness. If you notice any color changes, it is important that you take your cat to the vet for adequate treatment.
Other kitten eye problems include
- Eye trauma from bumping into thing from the house or from litter mates
- Congenital problems especially with Persians
If you notice discharge, squinting, bumps or lumps around the eyes, it is time to make a dash to the vet. The sooner most of this problems are caught, the easier they are to treat.
Cats never cease to amaze from when they are less than a pound heavy, they are quite interesting. Its great that you noticed the color change and now you know when do kittens eye change color and the reasoning behind that. Just take extra caution watching the little guys. They tend to be very clumsy and can easily hurt themselves.
Understanding Cat Eye Color Changes
If you have had a pet cat from the time it was a young kitten, you may have noticed that the color of its eyes changes over time. Cat eye color is somewhat variable, especially in the first stage of development. However, feline eye color changes may also indicate serious health concerns that warrant medical attention. Consequently, it is important to understand when and why a cats eye color may change.
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Your Kittens Eye Color Changes By Week 7
Your kitten is born blind, but its eyes will be mature to open at 2 weeks. However, its eyes are still not fully functional, and objects will appear blurred to it.
For your kitten, its vision ability develops first, then color.
Your kitten develops its full adult eye coloration anywhere from 3 to 6 months of age. Its eyes appear blue.
As your little one develops, its eye color might go through several changes, including brown, gray, green, and orange.
If your kittens eye color changes to light green, it means your kittys iris produced the least amount of melatonin. If your kitten has brown eyes, its iris produced a lot of melanin.
There is a wide array of adult eye colors your kitten can display once they have changed from the baby blue. These include green, blue, yellow, aqua, brown, or copper.
The final eye color of your kitten is determined by genes inherited from its mother and father.