Why Do Tabby Cats Have A Letter УMФ On Their Foreheads?
Oct 22, †Ј The most distinctive and defining feature of a tabby cat is the УMФ on their forehead. This is centred just above their eyes and is the prominent marking that sets tabbies apart from other cats. Image: Tilly Mint via Flickr. Mar 16, †Ј One of the most distinctive markings on a tabby cat is an УMФ on the forehead. Why tabbies have an УMФ is unknown, but there are some interesting legends about how they got this unique marking. Even if your kitty isnТt considered a tabby, a faint УMФ can often be seen Ц but you may have to squint really hard to see it.
But have you ever wondered why it is that all tabbies have these signature letter markings on their foreheads? Obviously science has to do with it, but there are also interesting ancient stories surrounding this telltale tabby cat marking. Each cat is unique as is their coat and its pattern, so certainly what foods contain brown fat must specifically explain how this commonality occurs.
We do know, however, that tabby cats are striped due to the agouti gene. This gene causes their stripes to have even distributions of pigment while the background of their coat is comprised of banded hairs. In the meantime, allow these interesting tales of how tabby cats earned those signature letters on their foreheads to intrigue youЕ Enjoy!
A true tabby always has one, even if it is muted diluted. So, there are a few theories surrounding the famous M. The first is that the M originated on these cats during ancient Egyptian times. The second, and perhaps even more hard to believe, is that Mother Mary herself blessed a stray ginger tabby who purred a fussy baby Jesus back to sleep with a kiss atop his forehead. The third comes from ancient How to cook bouillabaisse soup culture.
Have you ever wondered why it is that cats are afraid of cucumbers? Find out why some cats find this vegetable absolutely terrifying by reading this. I'm the owner of CattitudeDaily. I've loved cats ever since I was a young girl, and love to share my knowledge of them with the world!
How to Tell What Breed My Cat Is
Tabby cats usually have an УMФ on their forehead. But tabby cats arenТt a breed of cat, itТs a coat color, just like how you have a merle color in dogs like Australian shepherd. Any breed of cat can have a tabby coat pattern. Just go to your local shelter and adopt a cat. Mar 05, †Ј The СMТ on a Maine Coons forehead is a dominant patterned marking found on all tabby patterned Maine Coon cats. This prominent marking is not specific to the Maine Coon breed, but is visible on every color of Maine Coon cat that you can think of, . Jun 10, †Ј Tabby cats have a peculiar M shaped on their forehead. Though the origin of this is unknown, there are fantastic legends associated with it. The authenticity of any of it .
A tabby is any domestic cat Felis catus with a distinctive 'M' shaped marking on its forehead, stripes by its eyes and across its cheeks, along its back, and around its legs and tail, and differing by tabby type , characteristic striped, dotted, lined, flecked, banded or swirled patterns on the bodyЧneck, shoulders, sides, flanks, chest and abdomen. The tabby pattern is found in many official cat breeds and is a hallmark of the landrace extremely common among the general population of cats around the world.
The tabby pattern occurs naturally and is connected both to the coat of the domestic cat's direct ancestor and to those of their close relatives: the African wildcat Felis lybica lybica , the European wildcat Felis silvestris silvestris and the Asiatic wildcat Felis lybica ornata , all of which have similar coats, both by pattern and coloration. A genetic study of tabbies found five genetic clusters to be ancestral to cats of various parts of the world.
The English term tabby originally referred to "striped silk taffeta ," from the French word tabis , meaning "a rich watered silk. The notion that tabby is indicative of a female cat may be due to the feminine proper name Tabby as a shortened form of Tabitha.
The four known distinct patterns, each having a sound genetic explanation, are the mackerel, classic, ticked and spotted tabby patterns. A fifth pattern is formed by any of the four basic patterns when part of a patched patternЧa patched tabby, then, is a calico or tortoiseshell cat with patches of tabby coat such cats are called caliby and torbie, respectively, in cat fancy. All five patterns have been observed in random-bred populations.
Several additional patterns are found in specific breeds and so are not as well known in general. For example, a modified classic tabby is found in the Sokoke breed. Some of these rarer patterns are due to the interaction of wild and domestic genes, as with the rosetted and marbled patterns found in the Bengal breed.
The mackerel tabby pattern gives slender vertical, gently curving stripes on the sides of the body. Three or five vertical lines in an 'M' shape almost always appear on the forehead, along with dark lines from the corners of the eyes, one or more crossing each cheek, and of course many stripes and lines at various angles on the neck and shoulder area, on the flanks, and around the legs and tail, marks which are more or less perpendicular to the length of the body part.
Mackerel tabbies are also called 'fishbone tabbies,' probably doubly named after the mackerel fish. The classic tabby also known as blotched or marbled tabby has the 'M' pattern on the forehead but the body markings, rather than primarily thin stripes or spots, are thick curving bands in a whirled or swirled pattern with a distinctive mark on each side of the body resembling a bullseye.
Classic black tabbies tend to have dark browns, olives and ochres that stand out more against their blacks and classic orange tabbies have richer, fuller fields of red than their mackerel counterparts. Classic tabbies each have a light-colored "butterfly" pattern on the shoulders and three thin stripes the center stripe being darkest running along the spine. Classic tabby is a recessive trait. Classic tabbies are the most common type of tabby in much of the United Kingdom and the Middle East, among other places, but they are a far second in number to mackerel tabbies in most parts of the world.
The ticked tabby pattern is due to even fields of agouti hairs, each with distinct bands of color, which break up the tabby patterning into a salt-and-pepper appearance that makes them look sand-likeЧthus there are few to no stripes or bands.
These types of cats come in many forms and colors. The spotted tabby is thought to be the result of a modifier gene that breaks up the mackerel tabby pattern and causes the stripes to appear as spots. Similarly, the classic tabby pattern may be broken by the presence of the spotted tabby gene into large spots. Naturally, the most common spotted tabby looks most similar to the mackerel tabby, including the classic marks on the limbs, tail and head, including the 'M' on the forehead.
The orange tabby is a variant of any of the above tabby patterns, having phaeomelanin instead of eumelanin. It is orange and white, usually having a white underside and paws, while its back is usually orange.
There can be darker orange markings such as spots or stripes on the orange areas, but the white areas are mostly a solid color. The ratios between orange and white can greatly vary, but can range from a few orange spots on the back of a white cat to a thin white stripe down the stomach, or sometimes no white at all. Usually they have either a white spot on their face that covers their mouth and sides of their face, and comes to a point around their forehead; or their faces will be orange, and they will only have white starting on the bottom of their head or on their neck.
The majority of orange tabby cats are male. The orange coloring is found on the X chromosome. Female cats have XX chromosomes to the male's XY. Thus, both the mother and father cat must pass on the genes to the female, but males only need the trait from their mothers.
The four basic tabby patterns are due to two distinct gene loci the agouti gene locus, with two alleles, and the tabby locus, with three alleles and one modifier spotted, with two alleles. The fifth pattern is an emergent one expressed by female cats with one black and one orange gene one on each of their two X chromosomes and is explained by Barr bodies and the genetics of sex-linked inheritance.
The agouti gene , with its two alleles, A and a ,  controls whether or not the tabby pattern is expressed. The dominant A expresses the underlying tabby pattern, while the recessive non-agouti or "hypermelanistic" allele, a , does not. Solid-color black or blue cats have the aa combination, hiding the tabby pattern, although sometimes a suggestion of the underlying pattern can be seen "ghost striping".
This underlying pattern, whether classic, mackerel, ticked or spotted, is most easily distinguishable under bright light in the early stages of kittenhood and in on the tail in adulthood. However, the agouti gene primarily controls the production of black pigment, so a cat with an O allele for orange color will still express the tabby pattern.
The most common tabby pattern is mackerel and its T m allele at the tabby gene locus is dominant over the classic or blotched allele, T b. So a cat with a T m T m or T m T b genotype sets the basic pattern of thin stripes mackerel tabby that underlies the coat, while a T b T b cat will express a classic tabby coat pattern with thick bands and a ring or concentric stripes on its sides.
The ticked tabby pattern is a result of a different allele at the same gene locus as the mackerel and classic tabby patterns and this allele is dominant over the others. The ticked tabby coat essentially masks any other tabby pattern, producing a non-patterned, or agouti tabby much like the wild type agouti coat of many other mammals and the sable coat of dogs , with virtually no stripes or bars.
If the ticked allele is present, no other tabby pattern will be expressed. The ticked allele actually shows incomplete dominance: cats homozygous for the ticked allele T a T a have less barring than cats heterozygous for the ticked allele T a T m or T a T b.
The spotted gene is a separate locus theorized to be directly connected to the T m allele; it 'breaks' the lines and thin stripes of a mackerel tabby, creating spots. Since the tabby pattern is a common wild type, it might be assumed that medieval cats were tabbies. However, one writer believed this to be untrue, at least in England. Sometime after the midth century, the natural philosopher John Aubrey noted that William Laud , the Archbishop of Canterbury was "a great lover of Cats" and "was presented with some Cyprus -cats, i.
He then claimed that "I doe [ sic ] well remember that the common English Catt, was white with some blueish piednesse i.
The race or breed of them is now almost lost. Even today, Chessie is still remembered as one of the most iconic mascots in railroading and marketing history. The film The Adventures of Milo and Otis features an orange tabby named Milo, known as the titular character in its original Japanese version The Adventures of Chatran , portrayed by multiple animal actors.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Domestic cat with a distinctive coat marked by stripes, dots, lines, or other patterns. For other uses, see Tabby disambiguation. This article's factual accuracy may be compromised due to out-of-date information. The reason given is: Ta is a whole different locus.
Please update this article to reflect recent events or newly available information. November Belvoir Media Group. Retrieved 16 January Oxford Dictionaries English. Retrieved Oxford University Press.
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