50 Pics Of Unusual-Looking Pets Who Won The Random Card In The Genetic Lottery
Did you know that the beautiful Scottish Fold felines have their distinctive folded ears due to natural dominant mutation in the Fd gene? Or that Manx cats, a breed originating from the Isle of Man, have a small stub instead of a tail due to a naturally occurring mutation?
Well, some of the genetic anomalies can result in very interesting differences in physical appearance. Just think of Instagram’s supawstars like Midas the cat taking the internet by storm with its four ears, or the deceased Grumpy Cat whose ‘grumpy appearance’ was due to underbite and feline dwarfism.
So this post is about the tricks of nature that resulted in unusual and occasionally even wholesome genetic surprises in the animal kingdom. After you’re done with this post, be sure to check out Bored Panda's previous feature about unique-looking pets!
Meet Narnia, A Rare Two Faced Cat
This blue-eyed kitten’s face was precisely divided into two halves: a gray half and a black half, and everyone was surprised when they first saw him.
She Has The Most Gorgeous Eyes
There’s no definite answer to how common genetic abnormalities are in cats and other pets, the pet health and well-being expert Yulia Popyk from Petcube told Bored Panda, as it can vary greatly depending on the specific genetic abnormality and the population of cats being considered. “However, some estimates suggest that around 3-5% of all cats may be affected by a genetic abnormality. There are a variety of different factors that can contribute to the development of genetic abnormalities, including exposure to environmental toxins, dietary deficiencies, and mutations,” Yulia said.
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Petcube’s pet health expert said that some genetic abnormalities that have been reported in cats include congenital defects of the heart, kidneys, and eyes, among others. “While the exact cause of these abnormalities is not always clear, they are believed to be the result of inbreeding or other genetic factors.”
If you believe that your cat might be born with an abnormality that will critically influence their life, well-being, and health, it would be a good idea to consider subscribing to the emergency vet fund. “The service is basically an untraditional pet insurance product, which provides a direct payment to your vet clinic in a pet’s life-threatening emergency. Moreover, Emergency Fund covers any immediate medical issues which might occur to your cat due to genetic abnormalities,” Yulia said.
Holy Toebeans Big Foot
Cat With 4 Ears
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There are many mutations that are specific to particular breeds. “For example, the gene for short coat length is found only in certain breeds of dogs, such as poodles and Bichon Frises. Other examples include the genes for blue or green eyes, which are found in certain breeds of dogs, such as Siberian huskies, Alaskan malamutes, and Australian cattle dogs. The cocker spaniel breed is prone to a genetic mutation that causes a form of deafness.”
Yulia also said that “the blue coat color in Russian blue cats is caused by a mutation in the gene that encodes the protein melanophilin. This mutation is found only in Russian blue cats and is not found in any other breeds.”
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Moreover, “The mutation that causes the Siamese cat’s characteristic blue eyes is only found in that breed. The mutation that causes the hairless trait in Chinese crested dogs is relatively common in that breed but is very rare in other breeds. Other examples include the Manx cat’s taillessness, the Scottish fold’s folded ears, and the sphynx’s hairlessness,” Yulia told us and added that mutation largely depends on the specific genetics of each individual breed.
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Meanwhile, some mutations are more common in certain breeds than others. “For example, the dachshund breed is known for its short legs, which is caused by a mutation in the genes that control limb development. The dachshund-specific mutation called intervertebral disc disease is a condition that affects the discs between the vertebrae. This can cause pain, paralysis, and even death in affected dogs. Other breeds have mutations that cause them to have unique coat colors or patterns, such as the brindle coat of the Staffordshire bull terrier,” Yulia explained.