Thousands of cats go through shelters every year, but this specific litter of calico kittens made The Cat House on the Kings staff amazed.
This animal rescue center in Parlier, California, received a litter of five kittens, and soon the people who took care of them realized that they were looking at a statistical miracle – two of five cats were males. Ok, maybe this doesn’t sound that amazing, but just take a look at the math behind it.
Approximately one in 3,000 calico cats are male, so the chances of two males in one litter are astronomical. Why re the male calicos so rare? Pay attention - science ahead.
Calico’s coloration is related to the X chromosome. Because it’s a recessive gene, cats need to have two X chromosomes to have the phenotype (two X chromosomes - calico color and pattern).
Like humans, cats also have two chromosomes – females have XX, and males have XY. So how did we end up with two calico males? Well, they happen to have an extra X chromosome – XXY. This is a rare event, and it’s called Klinefelter Syndrome in humans.
Science aside, these five kittens are sweet as they can be, and they will definitely make great companions to those lucky people who adopt them. The two male kittens have already been adopted by the same family, but some of their sisters still require loving homes. Visit The Cat House on the Kings to find out more about them!
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