Oliver at Three Months old
Hi: I acquired a beautiful little man the first of July from my neighbor. The father is a white Siamese with big blue eyes and gray points. The mother is a most beautiful tabby, charcoal black with raw umber and burnt seine markings. She has huge emerald green eyes.
Oliver was just six weeks when he came to live with us. He is a wonderful bone white with a charcoal black tail which is striped with white. He has faint raw seine striping on legs and a bit on his sides and gray hands, feet, ears and some on his face which also has some tiger striping.
At first he had no trouble getting around. His eyes still had that dark baby's indigo blue coating of protection. The pupils glowing and iridescent red in the light.
His first day here I carried him out to the screened porch with me as I had been sitting out there reading a book and I noticed how he ducked his little head out of the light and clamped his eyes tight shut. Hmmmmmmm? I noticed that even inside the house he avoided bright light and would slam his little eyes shut as soon as a lamp or over head light was turned on.
As the dark blue protective coating began to fade from his eyes I thought at first that they were going to be that beautiful crystal blue that Siamese cats have. The pupils of course glow a bright red when the light hits them.
After awhile, I noticed that he avoided strong light more and more. He avoided the porch unless it was cloudy and raining and even then he spent his time out there hidden under the armchairs rather than in them like his sister. He seemed also to become awfully clumsy and would fall off things. I noticed too that he did not run around and play with his big sister as he did at the first and seemed to not see her coming and end up limping about as he was unable to dodge out of her way. Hmmmmmmm?
As time went by I saw that his eyes are not at all the crystal blue I had first thought they were going to be but are a very pale powder blue/washed out green/or light gray depending on the angle from which you see them or any combination of that colour all at the same time.
His little nose which was all gray when he first came home has now developed a large pink area in the center of it which is growing larger. I have a feeling that his little once gray nose will end up completely pink before much longer.
He tends to do far better on days when it is really dark and dank outside but still has some trouble with seeing what is going on around him. His sister of course does not understand this. They have the same mom but of course different dads. Dehlia is a year old now and shinny black with faint tabby markings, green shining pupils and big yellow/gold iris's. She is very athletic and loves to kamikaze her brother from above. A game I am trying hard to stop her from doing as the poor guy doesn't see her coming from most angles let alone from above.
He of course, is much more mobile at night and does play and run about a little bit more from dusk on. He is not blind as he can follow the movement of a string and catch it easily. He can also hear quite well.
None of my cats are outdoor cats. We do not live in a kitty friendly area. There are just too many predators here to allow your pets to run about in the great outdoors safely, not to mention the traffic. The closest they get to being outdoors is out on the porch which is completely screened.
I love my little guy very much. He goes in to be neutered in November and I will have my Vet look at his eye's. I am pretty sure that she will confirm my suspicions that my little Oliver is suffering from Albinism.
Oh........and he really hates the flash on the camera. Can't say as I blame the little guy much on the count.
Lily and Oliver
Hi Lily and Oliver.. thanks for sharing - a very nice article. Oliver is a very fine looking cat. You take a good photo too! I thought albinism resulted in an all white cat with pink eyes? Perhaps it is more complicated than that. Carrie Kissner has an albino cat called Kilo: My albino cat Kilo.
Apparently it can be difficult to distinguish between cats that are white because they carry the dominant white gene and have blue eyes and albino cats.
In the albino the eyes seem to be pink, the skin is pale pink and the fur white. But it seems that there the genetics are not fully understood.
Oliver's sensitivity to light indicates albino as you say. But perhaps pale pigmented eyes (light blue) also have the same effect as the iris, the part that contains the pigment, does not stop light entering the eye as effectively.
As far as I am aware, albino cats don't have the risk of deafness that cats that are white because of the presence of the dominant white gene or white spotting gene have.
I would be very pleased to hear back from you as to what the vet says about his possible albinism.
Thanks again for sharing.