There are a number of reasons why animals can have one eye of one color and the second of another, but the term for the most likely cause is heterochromia. It is more often than not to do with melanin. This is a pigment that is found almost everywhere in nature (spiders being a notable exception) and it dictates such things are skin and eye color.
Heterochromia occurs when there is either an excess or a lack of melanin. Although eye color can be affected by disease or injury when they are different colors the odds are that it is heterochromia which is the cause. The color of the iris in particular is determined first and foremost by the concentration of melanin and in most cases the eye is hyperpigmented – there is too much melanin.
Complete heterochromia is seen often in animals such as cats and dogs. It almost always involves the affected eye appearing blue in color. It happens in a white spot where melanin is absent – the cat species which seem to be affected are the Turkish Van and Angora. The odd-eyed cats tend to be white or mostly white and with one normal eye and one blue eye – altogether very striking.
1 thought on “Beautiful odd eyed cats”
I loved the pictures of all the odd-eyed cats. I have Angel.
She is pure white but is not an exotic cat breed. I rescued her from the side of a busy highway when she was about four weeks old. I knew her mother because she was a feral at the garden center where I worked. How mom allowed Angel near this street is beyond me. Anyway, I guess Angel would just be described as a DSH.
Anyway, when Angel was about three months old, I thought she was going blind. Angel’s left intensely blue eye was paling and her other very blue eye was changing color completely. I took her to my vet and he told me that it was “just heterachromia”.
Angel now has one eye that is light citrine in color and the other eye is a pale aquamarine. I have not seen a picture that I could say, “Oh, that looks like Angel”.
Also, since Angel had a kitten cap, her hearing as well as her vision is perfect.
Keep posting pictures of these beautiful and sometimes misunderstood cats.