Crystal blue eyes in Abyssinian cats are beautiful to look at. Especially kittens with blue eyes tend to get adopted easier than their dark-eyed littermates. But is it even normal for kittens or adult Abyssinian cats to have blue eyes?
You may have heard that blue Abyssinian cats are considered undesirable. The Abyssinian Cat Association is not amused about this trend for very valid reasons.
The controversy revolves around certain breeds that don’t usually carry a gene that would cause this kind of coloring.
Can Abyssinian Kittens Have Blue Eyes?
Yes, Abyssinian cats can have blue eyes as kittens. In fact, most breeds are born with bright blue eyes that slowly darken as they age. For most breeds, the blue eyes disappear once they’re not kittens anymore.
Why do the blue eyes vanish?
Color, like everything, is determined by the genetic makeup and developed by the amount of melanin production in your cat.
Melanin is a natural skin pigment that determines how light or dark your skin, hair and eyes are. Less melanin production leads to lighter blue eyes, pale skin or blonde hair. A complete lack of pigmentation is called Albinism.
In cats, this low production of melanin can cause a white coat, blue eyes or a pink nose. Melanin production only starts a few weeks after birth and slowly increases with age. That’s why most kittens are born with bright blue eyes and a lighter coat.
The coat color oftentimes influences the eye, nail and nose color. My Maine Coon, for example, has so much melanin in her fur that blue eyes would be nearly impossible.
How Long Do Abyssinian Kitten Eyes Stay Blue?
You may get a first glimpse at your Abyssinian’s adult eye color around the age of 4 months.
Their kitten coat will be replaced by a much thicker and darker adult coat when they are 6 months old.
Are Blue Abyssinian Cats Rare?
The truth of the matter is: they are not. Most Abyssinian cats do not have blue eyes, although some may have slightly blue or greenish-tinted skin.
Blue Abyssinian is genetic, as are most of the variations of this feline breed.
However, there indeed are very few of these cats, making their breeding almost nonexistent.
That being said, there are still some blue Abyssinian enthusiasts who want to acquire such a unique animal, so if you ask a Abyssinian owner where is the best place to find a blue-eyed Abyssinian for sale near me, they will likely tell you the home of a local breeder.
Breeding for Appearance
Breeding for a specific color or coat type should always be a red flag when choosing a responsible breeder. When specific looks are the primary breeding factor, other traits like temperament or health are disregarded.
You might find that the prettiest cats in a litter will have lots of health issues behind the facade. Always make sure that the parents have health certificates and the right behavioral traits you are looking for.
Check out my article on questions to ask your breeder to avoid falling prey to these “breeders”.
Inbreeding in cats is another huge issue and will be used to pass a certain appearance on to future generations. As you might imagine, inbreeding comes with the worst health concerns and should never be encouraged.
Tyrosinase is an enzyme that controls the production of melanin. Albino cats are “tyrosinase-negative” meaning that their body is incapable of producing melanin.
Therefore, these cats will be born with a unique white coat, blue eyes and a pink nose. Albinism in cats is an extremely rare mutation and both parents need to carry the recessive gene.
Be very cautious when a breeder is trying to sell you a rare white Abyssinian. Albinism comes with many health issues, including deafness or skin cancer.
Due to their pale coat, they must be protected from direct sunlight at all times using either bodysuits or sunscreen.
Can Blue Eyed Abyssinian Cats Go Blind?
Cats with blue eyes are not necessarily doomed to develop any vision-related issues. It largely depends on the specific reason your cat might have this eye color.
Blue Abyssinian cats are not among the breeds that carry this breed-specific gene, meaning that they probably will develop health problems later on.
You should stay away from the merle gene and albinism.
If you find a responsible breeder that has legitimate kittens with blue eyes, there is probably nothing you need to worry about as the color will start transforming at the age of 4 months.
What Cats Can Have Blue Eyes?
Cat breeds with blue eyes include:
They carry a breed-specific gene that allows them to have bright blue eyes without any related health issues.
Javanese and Ojos Azules breeds are available in a merle pattern which is not yet recognized by the CFA. Bluish eyes can also occur in Himalayan and Persian breeds.
Eye, coat, nose and skin color of any mammal is determined by the production of melanin. Lack of pigmentation can lead to blue eyes, a white coat and a pink nose.
Adult blue Abyssinian cats with are extremely uncommon and should only be considered with detailed health certificates of the parents stating that they don’t carry the merle gene.
Blue-eyed kittens are very common among many breeds and adorable to look at. If you are in love with the appearance of blue eyes and can’t live without it then consider breeds without any health issues indicated by eye color like the Persian (make sure they fit your lifestyle, level of knowledge, and so on though).