How Do I Know If I Have an Albino Kitten?

Any animal considered to be albino has a rare condition that results in lack of pigmentation. Albinism can occur in most all mammals, including humans and cats. Just having a white coat, though, does not mean that a feline is albino. Albinism occurs when there is a mutation of the genes that control pigmentation and albino cats can have related health problems, such as sensitivity to the sun or immune diseases. There are a handful of ways that an owner can help determine whether cat is albino or not, even at an early age.

Visually inspect a kitten's coat to determine fur color on all parts of the body. Commonly an albino cat will have no color in it's fur, resulting in a completely white coat.

Check the kitten's skin for coloration. Brush back fur to examine the skin; an albino cat's coat will appear pinkish and no spots or patches of color will be present. The nose, mouth and pads of an albino cat's feet will also be pink in color.

Look at the kitten's eyes. Although most cats are born with blue eyes, the color changes after a few weeks. Albino cats also lack pigment in their eyes, resulting in a pink eye color. In some instances an albino cat's eyes will be pale-blue or almost white. If you look closely at an albino cat's eyes, the blood vessels will be visible because of the lack of pigmentation.

Make loud noises around the kitten and look for a reaction. Although deafness is not a specific sign of albinism, the two go hand-in-hand. Veterinarians have found a link between cats with white coats and deafness. Because of other health problems associated with albinism, the chances of deafness increase in albino cats, but all albinos are not deaf.

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