Happy National Black Cat Appreciation Day
August 17th is Black Cat Appreciation Day. While we love to call our black cats mini panthers, there is only one breed of cat that was bred for just that. Bombay cats were bred to have the blackest fur and the miniaturized appearance of a black panther. Contrary to their name, Bombay cats were first bred in Kentucky, they were not recognized by the International Cat Association as a separate breed until 1979, which makes them a relatively new breed. Bombay cats are a cross breed of sable Burmese and the black American shorthair. While there are other cat breeds that can be black, the blackest is the Bombay, and there is no other color.
Did you know that in the United States black cats take an average of 6 more days to get adopted than other cats? Here is a secret though, black cats have a genetic advantage that helps them live longer and healthier than other cats. It all has to do with the melanin in their fur and leather. The dominant genes responsible for their dark coat are also linked to the prevention of certain diseases and may have to do with the elevated production of amino acids.
Have you ever looked at a black cat and thought it was really brown? That may be due to the amount of time they spend lounging in sun puddles or it could be their diet. That’s right, diet, according to a study in the Oxford Academic Journal of Nutrition, diet can play a role in your cat’s fur color.
Red Hair in Black Cats Is Reversed by Addition of Tyrosine to the Diet | The Journal of Nutrition | Oxford Academic (oup.com)