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Venus the odd-eyed harlequin cat

Venus’ unique ‘two-face’ pattern and odd colored eyes captivated the world in late August.

Google ‘venus the cat’ and tendency is you’ll be getting lots of articles ranging from personal blogs to the National Geographic. More of her heartwarming story here.

Venus’ almost perfectly symmetrical half-colored face (right side black with green eye, left side ginger with blue eye) should be seen in this video to be fully appreciated.
Venus the odd-eyed harlequin cat
Venus’ condition is so unique, her owner has taken to calling her a ‘chimera’ cat. Chimeras are usually the result of two embryos merging together in the mother’s womb. There are also human chimeras and their condition, when undiscovered, can be confusing to people all around.

The probability of Venus being a chimera can only be proven with skin or blood testing. Most likely she is just an almost perfect facial harlequin (split-colored face) cat with complete heterochromia. Each of these two conditions are already rare. Venus is rarer still.

‘Two-face” or “split-face” cats are not uncommon. You can Google for ‘harlequin cat’ and you would see other ‘two-face’ cats, including Venus. They are almost always tortoiseshell (“tortie) or calico cats. Torties are usually female because of the way cats inherit their coat color, but there are rare instances when tortoiseshell or calico coated males are born, and they are rarely fertile. Tortie or Calico males either result from:

    Chimerism - mixup of two embryos at birth
    Mutation of skin cells - more like birthmarks
    Klinefelter Syndrome - males have an extra ‘X’ chromosome — ‘XXY’ instead of the usual ‘XY’

The first two are the ones usually fertile, but they won’t be able to pass on their color pattern to their kittens. The last condition usually results to sterile males. Since Venus is female, if she isn’t spayed, she would probably be able to pass on her coat and eye color to her descendants.

Heterochromic cats, also called ‘odd-eyed’ cats, are usually white-coated, but not all the time. Odd-eyes in non-completely white cats are usually associated with the white spotting gene in cats. Venus sports a white spot in her chest, which makes her odd-eyes more likely the result of the white spotting gene. However, this resulted in the ginger half of her face having blue eyes — an arresting and rare combination indeed.

Whatever Venus’ real condition is there’s no denying that, with her split face and different colored eyes, she is as beautiful as her namesake.
Venus the odd-eyed harlequin cat

Venus the odd-eyed harlequin cat
 Venus the odd-eyed harlequin cat Video
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