Cat Mutant Genes

The second factor that complicates the laws of inheritance is the mutation, which also contributes to the great variety of corporal types, colors and length of hairs, besides other physical features, to the rejoicing of the cat lovers and breeders.

The mutations are produced when “something goes wrong” in the genes; that is, when these suffer changes in the process of transmitting from one generation to the next. If it weren’t for mutations, all the domestic cats of today would be the same as the African wild cat, the European wild cat, and maybe the manul cat, although, as much for the long hair cat, this last is product of a mutation.

At the beginning all cats had tiger like marks and short hair.

Along the generations, the mutant genes have introduced all the other features that present cats today. They are the responsible for the distribution of colors, the disappearance of the black stripes on the cloak, the introduction of new spots and the preponderance of certain colors in prejudice of others. For example, the so-called blue cats (in reality, of a grayish bluish tone) have a gene that is denominated diluted, a mutation of black.

Most of the mutant genes, although net all, are recessive, so it is necessary several generations to consolidate them definitively.

But when this happens and the original genes “fail”, there is no turning back and the following generations will adopt the new feature.

When they affect more outstanding features than that of the hair color, maybe the constitution or resistance to changes in the temperature, the mutations are basic for the evolution of a race. Although the domestic cat actual tiger like pattern (Tabby) is similar to that of the African or European wild cats, genetically is not identical.

Even without the intervention of breeders in the last 100 years, the mechanic of survival has produced a different than that 5,000 years ago had its first contact with humans.

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