Q:

Are female ginger cats rare?

A:

Male ginger cats outnumber females by about three to one, according to Focus. This coloration is a sex-linked trait found on the X chromosome. The University of Miami Department of Biology states that this gene has two versions, or alleles: orange or black. Orange is typically dominant over black.

Male cats have both X and Y sex chromosomes. Because the dominant ginger color is carried on the X chromosome, any male cat that inherits that version of the gene is orange, UM indicates.

However, females have a more complicated pattern for inheritance, according to UM. While the cat is still an embryo, one of the X chromosomes is always inactivated in each of her cells. Therefore, only the genes on the other X chromosome are expressed. If a female cat gets a ginger allele from both parents, she is ginger-colored. If she gets one orange and one black allele, some of her cells have inactivated orange alleles, while others have inactivated black alleles. Therefore, she is a patchwork of orange and black, sometimes known as tortoiseshell.


Is this answer helpful?

Similar Questions

  • Q:

    Are all ginger cats male?

    A:

    Not all ginger cats are males, but the majority of them are. Male ginger cats outnumber females by 3 to 1. On the other side, calico cats are nearly exclusively female with even fewer male exceptions.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Are ginger cats always male?

    A:

    Ginger cats are most commonly male, but it is possible to have a female ginger cat as well. It is a common misconception that ginger cats are always male.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How rare are female orange tabby cats?

    A:

    Female orange tabby cats aren't uncommon; approximately 20 percent of orange tabby cats are female. In the cat, the gene for the orange color is located on the X chromosome and is recessive. Males only have to inherit one orange gene to appear orange, while females have to inherit two.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How long do female cats stay pregnant?

    A:

    According to Cat World, a cat's pregnancy typically lasts 63 to 65 days. However, the length of a pregnancy varies between cat breeds, and it is possible (although uncommon) for a cat's pregnancy to be as short as 60 days or as long as 70 days.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore