Features of color and maintenance of Maine Coon Colourpoint

9 August 2022

Point color is one of the most popular among cat lovers. Many mistakenly call it Siamese, as it is most often found in cats from the Siamese-Oriental group.

Despite this fact, not only “Thais” and “Siamese” wear dark spots on the muzzle, paws and tail, color-point Maine Coons are also no exception. All these animals are very different from each other and features of coloring, and character.

Color point and its features

In Maine Coon color point, most of the coat remains almost white, and some areas (legs, tail, ears and muzzle) are covered with dark spots. The severity of the transition between light and dark zones determines the value of the animal. The larger it is, the higher the final cost. Residual drawings and spots on the body are equated with marriage

Color-point are characterized by the following features:

  1. temperature dependence. When it gets cold, the amount of dark shade increases.
    The darkening of the fur coat under the influence of cold is easy to notice in cold weather. If the cat sleeps on the windowsill, then the part of the body leaning against the window will lose its whiteness.
  2. Age-related change in the intensity of points. Newborn color-point kittens are completely white or light cream. This is due to the stable warm temperature in
    mother’s womb. The first black marks appear within a couple of days after birth, and by 6-10 months the coloring is finally formed.
  3. Relationship with the color of the iris. It is strictly blue, and the clarity of the points depends on its brightness.

Colourpoint Maine Coon kitten

In this photo, a Maine Coon colourpoint kitten, aged 3 and 15 days.

In this photo, a Maine Coon colourpoint kitten, aged 3 and 15 days.

Questions of color-point genetics

The “Color” gene set, which is responsible for pigment synthesis, consists of several gene forms – from the main C form and mutant forms of albinism.
The dominant (main, suppressive) gene C gives a complete dyeing of the coat and the iris in a certain color. In monochromatic cats, each hair is evenly dyed along the entire length.

The “cs” gene is responsible for the color point. Under its influence, the color pigment penetrates only into the coat that is in the cold zone of the cat’s body. And where the temperature is higher, the cs gene inhibits the penetration of the pigment. In this regard, the hair on the body of the cat’s body will not be pure white, but will simply be clarified. It matches the color point. So, if the muzzle, paws, ears and tail of a cat are dark brown, then the body of the body will be fawn, if it is red, then in this case the body will be cream, etc.

The cs gene is recessive, it is suppressed by the C solid color gene, therefore it can only appear if the kitten receives the cs gene from both parents. Thus, a kitten will be Siamese if two cs genes “meet” in it. The trick is that if a female and a male, being simply carriers of this color-point gene, can be of different colors and even completely one-colored, and with all this, a color-point kitten can be born to this couple.

Caring for Colour point Maine Coon

The loss of pronounced points reduces the value of the animal. For this reason, the owners need to do their best to prevent darkening of the coat with the help of the following recommendations:

  1. The peculiarity of the color-point coloration is that its tone, shade and intensity change depending on the ambient temperature. The lower the air temperature, the darker the cat. The optimum air temperature for color-point coloration is 25-28°C.
  2. Eliminate foods that affect color from the diet: buckwheat, oatmeal, seafood, seaweed, carrots, pumpkin, beets and offal.
  3. Do not forget about the regular combing of the Maine Coon Color Point. Their hairs are prone to tangling, and when the tangles are sheared, the color on the sheared – shaved place necessarily darkens.

As for Maine Coon colourpoints, they are still very rare. The descriptions for them are very careful. While these are single individuals. Experience in breeding Maine Coon colourpoints is only being gained. But what is an experiment today may become quite common practice tomorrow: Cream point, Fawn point, Cinnamon point, Chocolate point, Seal point, Lynx point, Lilac point, Blue point, Tortie point, Torbie point…

Already today in Russia and Ukraine there are catteries that work with the rarest for the Maine Coon breed point coloration.
We are confident that color-pointed Maine Coons will win more and more fans!

A bit of the history about coloration point in Maine Coon. See there: Maine Coon Colourpoint

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