Point coloration, often mistakenly called 'Siamese
coloring' this pattern is seen not only in Siameses, but also in many
breeds, and in mixed breed or
The point pattern is expressed by limiting
the coldest areas of the body, namely the face, ears, tail and legs. This means
that point kittens
are often born white, since there is little temperature difference in the womb.
As the kitten ages, the cooler areas darken and warmer areas cause the pigment
to become unstable and show up as only a creamy to white color. Points are not
limited to solid colors or dark colors. It is possible to have a red (orange
color) or fawn (pale warm gray) point. It is also possible to have a
tabby point. If the points are not black or at least very dark, the
coloration is called colorpoints.
Because of this restriction of pigment, point cat's eyes are always some
shade of blue, because the top layer of the iris is not covered in another
color, letting the blue show through. The back of the eye also lacks pigment,
giving these cat's pupils an eerie red reflection in the dark, unlike a normally
pigmented cat's green to blue shine.
The point gene is carried on the C
locus, where albinism is
also carried. It is shown with the sign cs, and needs two alleles of cs for the
point to be expressed. The point gene is recessive to the
tabby gene. Also
carried on the C locus is the gene for the
sepia pattern. This is the darkest of all of the pigment restricting patterns,
and pigment is only paled at the warmest point in the body, the abdomen. This
pattern's gene is represented by cb. When a cat carries the genes cs and cb, the
mink pattern is formed, in which the pigment distribution is between a sepia
and a point cat.
Breeds with points
These breeds either include points in the breed standard, or often contain