The 5 S's explained: Solid,

Silver, Smoke, Shaded, Shell


Solid- Basic genes explained

"There are 9 eumelanin-based (black-based) self colors and 3 phaeomelanin-based (red-based) self colors. The red-based colors are genetically solid, but because of the way the red pigment and non-agouti gene interact, they may have discernible tabby markings.

Self white (not shown) masks any underlying color. The cat may be genetically black, genetically cream etc, but the presence of the white gene obscures the color. Other self white cats are the result of extreme expression of the white spotting gene discussed later.

There are 2 late color change genes that result in additional self colors: amber (Norwegian Forest Cats) and Russet (Burmese). These cause black pigment to gradually fade and become reddish."

A: dominant agouti gene causing tabby marking

a: recessive non-agouti gene causing solid marking

So A/A or A/a gave tabby cats

a/a giving away solid cats

Wb- : gene du shaded dominant

wb+ : gene non shaded recessif

  • The Wb (shadded) gene is ONLY expressed in the presence of gene A. So either A/A or A/A.

  • So the only way to get shaded hidden is in solid cats either a/a or white cats.

  • Shaded deleted the tabby marking, which means if there is a tabby marking then it's a high silver.This means it's impossible to get a shaded cat by the crossing of 2 tabby cats, in this case the cat is not shaded but high silver.

  • Beware, high smoke is not shaded, but they can be shaded carrier, unlike tabby who cannot be shaded carrier

  • So when you look at pedigrees and see a shaded issue of 2 tabby parents (22 for example) it's not possible. It's not me who says it, it's genetics

  • To have a shaded kitten one of the parents must be shaded or solid shaded carrier or white shaded carrier.

Agouti + Wide Band = Golden series

Agouti + Wide Band + dominant Silver = Silver series

In goldens, wide band refers to the yellow banding of the hair shaft.

Golden Tabby

Golden tabbies is a cat where the yellowish bands in the hair are somewhat wider then on a regular tabby (see the pictures above).

  • Wider bands.

  • Color dark yellow to apricot on the wider bands.

  • White/light colors is tolerated beside the nostrils, above the lips, on the chin as long as it not extend down to the chest.

  • The dark color of the nose rim may extend over the whole nose leather and thus be the same as the corresponding solid color.

  • Ticked hairs, brindling in the dark parts of the pattern is not acceptable (here is something to work on since we have not selected for those colors).

  • Lack of contrast or coat that is grey or pale in tone or grey undercoat, are not acceptable.


Non-agouti + Wide Band = Solid Colour

Non-agouti + Wide Band + dominant Silver = Smoke Pattern

The presence or absence of the Inhibitor (silver) gene does not affect the Wide Band effect - Golden Shaded lack the Inhibitor gene, but have a shading pattern comparable to Silver Shaded cats.

The shaded masks homozygous mackerel tabby as is true with most homozygous shaded ASH, in my experience. The recessive inversion of U_ will be called u and uu allows the cats to express a stripped mackerel (Tm_) or classic tabby pattern . Because both parents are homozygous (shaded - UUTmTm, classic uutbtb) all F1 kittens are unstriped tabbies carrying both mackerel and classic tabby patterns (UuTtb).

If the gene behind shaded ASH's is a single dominant gene U_, it is on a separate allele that "masks" the underlying tabby pattern. Table 2 illustrates the expected inheritance if a single dominant gene, U_ produced unstriped tabbies. For the sake of illustration, a shaded "homozygous" shaded female is bred to a classic male without a shaded background.

The U_ gene is not a true complete dominant, since the heterozygote allows the striping on the head and extremities to be expressed. Partial, incomplete, or co-dominance is probably closer to the truth.

The agouti gene probably works similarly in cats and brown tabbies appear to produce both eumelanin and phaeomelanin similar to the wild type agouti mouse. However, agouti mice are stripeless and mouse genetics are unable to explain how stripes occur in cats. Stripes are remarkable because they represent variable expression of the agouti gene. Both the light and the dark striped areas have multiply banded hair, but the banding frequency varies in these sites. In a classic tabby, in the black stripes areas the hair follicles are coordinated to produce hairs with a black (eumelanin) tip followed by a brown (pheomelanin) band in the undercoat in the case of a brown tabby or no melanin in the case of a silver tabby. In the light areas, the hair follicles collaborate to form a different banding pattern with shorter pigmented tips and higher banding frequency. Here, the hairs are multiply banded, usually black, light, black followed by a light undercoat. As one moves from the back to the belly, the frequency and length of the colored bands decreases.

In the ASH breed, all shaded cats are required to have a silver inhibitor genes (I_) and currently shaded cats lacking the silver inhibitor gene (such as shaded goldens) are not recognized for championship in the breed. The silver inhibitor gene is dominant and the genetics have been recently reviewed by Heather Lorimer [5]. The term "silver" refers to the white banded areas of the hair, not to the pigmented areas, such as the black tip on a silver shaded or classic tabby. Silver classic tabbies are more accurately described as black-silver tabbies, as they are in some non-CFA registries. A cameo tabby is more accurately described as a red-silver tabby, a pewter tabby a blue-silver tabby, etc.In the purest form, silver differs from white predominantly by mechanism. In white cats, either the melanocytes (the cells that make the pigment), are lacking because they failed to migrate to the white areas of the coat (for example, in the case of the dominant white gene or the white spotting gene) or the melanin biochemistry is abnormal and can't be made (as in the case of some of rarer recessive whites). The lack of melanin is called amelanotic and a cartoon of a white hair

"The hair follicles are coordinated to produce the same amount of melanin for the same distance on the hair. The width of the dark band may be longer on the top of the cat compared to the bottom, but the progression is smooth and the dark tipping appears very even. Similarly, in the light striped areas, the hairs are multiply banded but the banding is very even. The hair follicles in the stripe areas are well coordinated with each other and relate to what the other is doing.

Patterned classic ASH tabbies are selected for even hair tipping (little Confusion), otherwise the pattern looks very uneven and mottled. In many cases, when a shaded cat is crossed with a classic tabby, the evenness of tipping appears to be dominant and the F1 generation are ticked tabbies similar to the one shown. Confusion is common in silver Persians - most silver and Chinchilla Persians have some banded hairs, if observed closely. Some Chinchilla Persian breeders have reported that some judges will put a Chinchilla Persian in a Silver category if they see solid black hairs. Based on the ubiquitous nature of this gene, it probably is not appropriate to classify a Persian based solely on this single attribute and the color probably should be assigned based on the overall appearance of the cat regardless of a few solid black hairs."

Shaded Silvers have a mix of three patterns: a single broad band and wide undercoat; a few broad bands and wide undercoat or multiple thin bands (as seen in the background colour of Silver Tabbies).

Shell

  • Tipping 1/8 of the hair and the tipping should be as even as possible (here we have some work to do in our selective breeding)

  • Ground color from dark yellow to apricot

  • The ground color is more intense on face and back, with a lighter shade on the chin, the ear tufts, down the flanks, on the belly and underside of the tail.

  • Whisker pads, chin and chest might be light to deep cream.

  • Colors and distribution of tipping as for the corresponding silver (shell)

  • Eyes and Nose leather should be outlined with the color of the tipping and even, distinct nose/eye rim is preferred.

  • Paw pads in same color as the tipping.

  • A Golden without tabby markings and bars and with a warm coat color is prefered.

  • White/light colors is tolerated beside the nosetrils, above the lips, on the chin as long as it not extend down to the chest.

  • Coat that is to grey or pale in tone or grey undercoat, are not acceptable.

Shaded

  • Tipping 1/3 of the hair and the tipping should be as even as possible (here we have some work to do in our selective breeding

  • Ground color from dark yellow to apricot

  • The ground color is more intense on face and back, with a lighter shade on the chin, the ear tufts, down the flanks, on the belly and underside of the tail.

  • Whisker pads, chin and chest might be light to deep cream.

  • Colors and distribution of tipping as for the corresponding silver (shaded)

  • Eyes and Nose leather should be outlined with the color of the tipping and even, distinct nose/eye rim is preferred.

  • Paw pads in same color as the tipping.

  • A Golden without tabby markings and bars and with a warm coat color is prefered.

  • White/light colors is tolerated beside the nosetrils, above the lips, on the chin as long as it not extend down to the chest.

  • Coat that is to grey or pale in tone or grey undercoat, are not acceptable.