Thursday, February 24, 2011

I am not a mutt!

Jennifer has been spending a lot of time around the house lately. I believe she is reading as the stack of books on her floor keep growing. I have mixed feelings about her seemingly continual presence. One the one hand, I am forced to deal with her unusual ideas more frequently, but on the other, I can ensure that my meals are served promptly at the proper times. Feline meal times is one of Jennifer's recent notions, and a peculiar one at that, but that is a subject for another post.

Recently, I came across an intriguing chart. As the image is quite large, I won't post it here. Instead, this link should allow you to access it. The chart is really quite fascinating and reflects an immense effort on the part of its creators. As many of you may know, my feline housemates and I are not members of any recognized breed. Because of this, Jennifer insists on calling us mutts when asked about our pedigree. Mutts, of course, are dogs and it is terribly improper to refer to the more sophisticated cat by that term. This chart, however, enables us to determine a more suitable designation.

We shall begin with Edmund as he is the easiest to identify:
Under the "Solid" category, the gray is a tempting choice, but my young friend's paws are pink and so that option is out. Instead, he must be a Frost and as he has some white on his chest we have decided that he is a Tuxedo Frost.

Dante's case is more complicated as white fur is generally indicative of albinism, a condition which he most assuredly does not have.
However, it is possible to locate a non-albino white with Dante's eye and paw color on the far left side of the chart. His spot patterns means that he is white with black Harlequin spotting. An excellent pattern for my occasionally uncoordinated housemate.

Identifying my description gave us the most challenges.
My coloring and pattern suggest calico. However, male cats lack the genes necessary for tri-color coats and thus calicos can only be females. Lady cats are all well and good but I am most definitely a gentleman. (Editor's Note: Male calicos do exist but are extremely rare). My coloring, instead, is that of a tabby. Tabbies are located in several places on the chart and it is necessary to look under the "Tipped" section to find mine. I am a Spotted Cameo Tabby.

I can only hope that Jennifer uses the correct terminology in the future although given her stubbornness I suspect she will continue to refer to us as mutts.

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