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About Polydactyls

Are polydactyls a result of inbreeding?

No, polydactylism is due from a dominant gene mutation, which means they also carry the gene for normal toes. Polydactyl parents can produce kittens with normal toes in isolated breeding or random breeding population. This is because the hidden recessive gene for normal toes is still in the feline population, so non-poly kittens will still occur. Cats do not breed true for poly, but recessive genes do breed true. Two normal toe cats almost always produce normal toe kittens unless you have a cat that is genetically polydactyl but isn't showing the trait. A normal toe kitten from one or both poly parents, growing up and having poly kittens would be an example, of genetically poly without visual traits. Poly is a genetic mutation rather than a deformity, It doesn't have advantages or disadvantages to the cat and doesn't cause it ill-effects, it's just a deviation from the norm. It’s an ancient trait and also a trait of the Pixie Bob, so inbreeding isn't the cause nor does inbreeding increase your chances of poly kittens. It’s somewhere around 40-50 % chance of poly kittens coming from poly parents, because of the hidden recessive gene, which basically is the mode of inheritance. Poly kittens/cats have become very popular in the cat world and are sought after, and can be more expensive than normal toe kittens.

Blue Romeo is a 4-paw poly which is rare. It is normally seen in the two front or the two back paws. His two front paws are mitten paws which occur when a polydactyl cat’s extra toes form in the middle of the paw, giving it a thumb-like—or mitten-like—appearance. Although these extra digits resemble thumbs, they say they are not opposable. In my experience with poly cats, the mitten paws seem to be. Polydactyl cats have more advantages and benefits because of their wider, larger paws. They can better balance on various surfaces, climb, hunt, and capture their prey. A mouse doesn’t have a chance. Having extra toes can increase their odds for injury, like being stepped on, ingrown, or embedded and nail grown outward catching on things. These nails may injure their paw pad or foot. You will need to take extra care of their nails because their feet are shaped differently, trimmed nails are best. 

Having a polydactyl kitten will never be boring. Your kitten just got a few toes cuter!

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