By Michael and Sarah
You have never seen a domestic cat like this one. There are possibly only two like him in the UK, where, we are told, he lives on a veterinary farm. He greets people who visit the place. You can see he has jumped into the car belonging to Danny Redmond. He took the photos. A well-known cat website states that this cat has a condition called vitiligo which I have written about on another page. Vitiligo does appear to have a similar effect on the coat.
However, the country’s number one expert on cat coats and cat genetics (and all manner of cat facts), Sarah Hartwell, makes the following comment about this extraordinarily rare cat (in the UK).
I believe this cat doesn’t have vitiligo, but has the karpati pattern. The pattern is well known in the Carpathian area (info here) but Panda Kitty would be only the 2nd cat in Britain to be seen with this pattern. There was another one noted in Wales. The development of the pattern is given in my link above, though this is still being studied. Karpati could have come in with family cats brought in from somewhere like Poland, though the pattern is dominant (and can occur in conjunction with any other colour or pattern) it would be masked if a pure white cat or a cat with a lot of white patching was brought in.
The karpati pattern is now being introduced into the LaPerm breed in a couple of countries. It’s worth noting that it’s not a breed, but is a pattern.
Vitiligo is less likely to be symmetrical, and some of the identifying traits of the karpati pattern are the white ears and white (or salt-and-pepper) tail i.e. white right along its length, not just at the tip. Unlike a tuxedo pattern it doesn’t produce a white chest or belly. (Sarah Hartwell)
He is nicknamed “Panda Kitty”. As you can see he is losing his pigmentation at the extremities of his body and as he is a black cat we have this extraordinary coat which almost appears to be a negative of the Siamese cat.