Articles that will help you better understand pedigrees
and the genetics of cat breeding

Titles marked with a red asterisk * are for members only.


  • * Are All Problems Inherited?
    Knowing which faults in your kittens may be genetic, and which may be due to other factors is essential to evaluating which cats to include or remove from a well thought-out breeding program.
    September 2022

  • * Breeding A Cat With A Genetic Fault
    Should you use a cat with a genetic fault in your breeding program? While the answer may not a simple yes or no, here are things to consider that may help you make an informed decision...
    April 2018

  • * By The Sire, Out Of The Dam
    When listing or discussing a cat's sire and dam, there is a standard protocol that should be used. Learn how to understand and be understood when discussing your cat's parents...
    February 2018

  • Carictor Pedigree Database Debuts on
    The Carictor pedigree database has been added to Gathered and compiled by Cathy Scarbrough of Carictor Persians and Exotics, it is the largest private collection of Persian, Himalayan and Exotic pedigrees in the world numbering over 750,000 individual cats!
    September 2019

  • * Developmental Accidents
    Do you understand the difference between an inheritable mutation and a developmental accident? Learn the answer to this question and much more ...
    April 2010

  • Eye Color In Pointed Cats
    Understand why the eye color of pointed cats can vary from pale blue to deepest navy.
    February 2006

  • * Gene Inheritance Patterns
    An understanding of the various types of patterns of inheritance is a basic component to the development of a successful breeding program. Learn the 10 main types of gene inheritance that the cat breeder should know ...
    October 2019

  • * Genes & Chromosomes
    Everyone can learn to understand the details of genetics of the cat. It begins with understanding the basics and becoming familiar with the terminology involved when discussing genetics. Let's get started!
    March 2021

  • * Genetic Notation
    Learn the few simple rules of genetic notation that you need to know to understand a cat's individual genetic makeup, and to plan your breeding program.
    November 2019

  • * Genetic Terms For The Cat Breeder
    Knowing the terminology used in a discussion about genetics is the first step towards understanding the principles of feline heredity.
    May 2021

  • * How To Breed To Get Kittens Of The Sex You Prefer
    Do you want more female kittens in your litter? You can actually breed to increase your chances of getting girls . . . or boys. It is impossible to completely control the sex of the kittens produced in a litter, there are a few things you can do that may tip the scales in favor of producing more kittens of the sex you really want -- including the timing of the actual act of mating between the stud and queen.
    August 2020

  • * Hybrid Vigor
    Whether breeding carnations, cattle or cats, every breeder should understand the meaning and implication of hybrid vigor in their breeding program.
    September 2007

  • * Odd-Eyed
    The odd-eyed cat has one of the most unusual and stunning expressions in the feline world. Learn how and why these unique cats get their miss-matched eyes...
    November 2008

  • Possum: Tail of Two Kitties
    "Possum" is the name of a most unusually marked kitten. Half Himalayan and half tortoiseshell, this unique feline is a chimera - the result of two different embryos fusing together early in their development and growing as a single individual!!!
    May 2008

  • * PRA... Blind! And It's Hereditary
    Could you have a blind kitten and not know it? The problem is called Progressive Retinal Atrophy, a genetic condition.
    August 2003

  • * Punnett Square & Cat Genetics
    A Punnett Square is a useful tool for breaking down genetic scenarios into smaller pieces that are easy to understand. The cat breeder can use a simple Punnett Square to predict the color of kittens from a specific mating -- or the chances of a unique characteristic being passed along.
    July 2017

  • * Sex Chromosomes
    By definition, a cat breeder is interested in kitty sex. It is a major part of the job. On a genetic level, the cat breeder needs to learn about the sex chromosomes -- those unique chromosomes that determine whether a kitten will be male or female, a boy or a girl.
    January 2022

  • * Sharing Pedigrees: Good Or Bad?
    Some breeders believe in sharing their cats' pedigrees. Some breeders do not. Learn the reasons why people are either for and against the making public their cat's pedigrees...
    October 2010

  • * Those Sneaky Recessives
    Recessive genes -- some are good, some may be bad. Regardless, recessive genes can be difficult to manage in a breeding program. Learn more.
    October 2016

  • Tracking The Cat
    A five year genetic study of over 1000 felines of 22 breeds confirms that the domestication of cats about 10,000 years ago originated in an area known as the Fertile Crescent, which stretches from Turkey to northern Africa and to modern-day Iraq and Iran.
    August 2008

  • * Werewolf Syndrome In Cats: The Story of Atchoum & Moony
    Hypertrichosis, sometimes called Werewolf Syndrome, is a condition that causes abnormal and rapid hair growth over the body of a person or an animal. Two Persian cats -- a male named Atchoum and a female named Moony -- both have hypertrichosis -- and have become internet sensations. This is their story.
    October 2018



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