Is It True White Persian Cats With Blue Eyes Are Born Blind?

by Elton Dunn, Demand Media
    Your white, blue-eyed Persian is more likely to be deaf than blind.

    Your white, blue-eyed Persian is more likely to be deaf than blind.

    While Persian cats with blue eyes are not born blind, they may experience vision problems. The cats are more likely to be born deaf! While a blind or deaf Persian may make a lovable feline friend, she'll need special care and TLC.

    Myth

    White Persian cats with blue eyes are not born blind. While Persian cats are more likely to go blind than other cats, blue eyes do not factor into their vision problems any more than brown or green eyes. While some cats are born blind, Persians tend to go blind from a rare condition known as Feline Progressive Retinal Atrophy. This condition affects certain breeds of cats and does not go by eye or fur color.

    Persian Eye Problems

    Feline Progressive Retinal Atrophy typically sets in when kitty reaches four to eight weeks. Vision declines rapidly; kitty may lose sight by the age of 15 weeks. Folks used to think only chocolate or Himalayan Persians suffered from PRA, but studies found no relation. This means that any Persian -- including white, blue-eyed ones -- could become blind from this disease. There are plenty of sighted Persians, however!

    White Fur Health Problems

    While there is no correlation between Persian fur and eye color and blindness, there is a correlation between white cats and another disability -- deafness. 65 to 85 percent of white cats with two blue eyes are born deaf. White cats with one blue eye have a 40 percent chance of deafness. These hearing problems are not breed-specific, so white, blue-eyed Persians are as likely as other cat species to be deaf.

    Blindness Signs

    If you're concerned your white Persian may be blind, observe her behavior. If kitty seems reluctant to move from one spot or starts bumping into things, she may be experiencing vision loss. If her eyes are cloudy, inflamed or discolored, she may be going blind. If kitty is often clumsy or easily startled, she may have vision loss. Your vet can perform an eye exam if any of these symptoms are present.

    About the Author

    A successful website writer since 1998, Elton Dunn has demonstrated experience with technology, information retrieval, usability and user experience, social media, cloud computing, and small business needs. Dunn holds a degree from UCSF and formerly worked as professional chef. Dunn has ghostwritten thousands of blog posts, newsletter articles, website copy, press releases and product descriptions. He specializes in developing informational articles on topics including food, nutrition, fitness, health and pets.

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