Calico Snowshoe

justsanker

TCS Member
Kitten
Joined
Nov 11, 2012
Messages
8
Purraise
1
This is extremely dumbed down, my understanding.

I.   Snowshoes rely simply on a series of recessive genetic ticks in succession to one another in one cat. The gloving/mask gene and the color point gene were once thought to be one in the same, but expressed differently depending on the genetic thumbprint of the cat. However they are in fact separate genes entirely and both of these inherently different genes are necessary to produce a Snowshoe cat.

II.   Specifically, a Traditional Siamese parent and a bi-colored American Shorthair parent must possess the same recessive genes for color points and white gloving/masking, respectfully, to produce Recessive Snowshoe offspring. Then, a Recessive Snowshoe must be bred to another Recessive Snowshoe to achieve a Dominant Snowshoe. However, if both possess these specific genes, the offspring must possess them as well and they must be as responsive as possible. If the offspring do not have this exact genetic code, the proper Recessive Snowshoe genes, it’s offspring will either look Siamese or Bi-colored American Shorthaired. Thus the rarity of the breed, as there is no proof of Recessive Snowshoe genes in any kitten without expensive genetic testing or expensive experimental litters. Once a snowshoe is attained, it can only produce a Snowshoe if bred to another snowshoe.

A1+B1=C1  

A1= Female Traditional Siamese

B1= Male Bi-colored American Shorthaired

C1= Female Recessive Snowshoe

A2+B2=C2   

A2= Female Traditional Siamese

B2= Male Bi-colored American Shorthaired

C2= Male Recessive Snowshoe

C1+C2=D

D1= Dominant Snowshoe

                C2+A1(or B1)= Non Snowshoe

III.  For the calico coloration effect to be dominant in a Snowshoe and for such a specimen to exist, one would have to breed a male Calico to a Siamese not once, but twice and breed the offspring of these breedings to one other.  To achieve a Calico Male it must be either XY/XY or XXY.

XY/XY, also known as a Chimera male, occurs when two male embryos are conceived, one red male and one black male, then at some point in the womb, one embryo absorbs the other’s tissue and a single offspring is born possessing both sets of DNA, red and black. The male Chimera almost always show a Mosaic Pattern. Red/black Chimera males are never Calico, but genetically half red and half black. Thus they cannot bass on a Calico gene, but only the red or black gene.

XXY occurs when an X sperm and a Y sperm enter an egg(X) at the same time, but XXY males are almost always sterile (like 1:1,000,000,000,000{trillion}).

IV.   Assuming there is a viable male Calico, it would have to be bred to A and A2 to POSSIBLY achieve a Calico Recessive Snowshoe, which would be female. Then one would have to achieve the same task again, but must attain a male Calico Recessive Snowshoe. Lastly, one would have to breed both male and female Calico Recessive Snowshoes to one another.

A1+E1=F1

A1= Female Traditional Siamese

E1= Viable Male Calico

F1= Female Recessive Calico Snowshoe

A2+E1=F2

A2 = Traditional Siamese

E1= Viable Male Calico

F2= Male Recessive Calico Snowshoe

                F1+F2=G1
F1= Female Recessive Calico Snowshoe

F2= Male Recessive Calico Snowshoe

G1= Dominant Calico Snowshoe

V.   So the odds of two non-registered, perhaps accidental or feral, female Snowshoes being bred to an almost impossible to find non-sterile male Calico, is astronomical. It is possible in theory, but in NO WAY probable.

Way more likely than the offspring of aforementioned breedings is a Diluted, Tortoiseshell, Color Pointed American Shorthaired with White Gloving/masking.

Perhaps this is a less...negative-know-it-all answer?
 

orientalslave

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Jan 23, 2012
Messages
3,425
Purraise
111
Location
Scotland
The short answer is that only a registered cat with genuine papers (some BYBs provide fake papers) that say it's a Snowshoe is a Snowshoe.  All the others are snowshoe look-alikes.  Having the same colour genes as a Snowshoe does not make a cat one.  The breed is rare not because it's hard to get the right genes into a cat (it isn't) but because it's a fairly new breed.

Almost all vets know very little about pedigree cats, and many rescues have a habit of calling any pointed cat with white a snowshoe, any shabby tabby a Maine Coon and so on.

If someone wants a genuine tortie snowshoe they need to go to a breeder.  If they are happy with a look-alike then they will find one (evenually) at a rescue.
 

mrblanche

TCS Member
Veteran
Joined
Jan 28, 2008
Messages
12,578
Purraise
118
Location
Texas
Well, your dog certainly has excellent taste in kittens!

Being a volunteer at a shelter, and seeing perfectly nice cats have to go to that terrible dark room in the back, makes me say that any unnecessary breeding is not a good idea.  Even people with the best of intentions sometimes have kittens they can't home and end up dumping by the road or at the shelter.

I have seen a couple with that sort of coloring come through the shelter, but they aren't terribly common.
 
 

orientalslave

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Jan 23, 2012
Messages
3,425
Purraise
111
Location
Scotland
Yes, horrible that healthy cats and kittens get pts for not having a home quickly enough. 

The best way to prevent unnecessary breeding is to neuter all kittens before they are old enough to breed.  I would hope that all shelter cats and kittens are neutered before being homed, but it seems some are not.

There seem to be people who are unaware that a female kitten as young as 4 months can get pregnant, that she only needs to escape once, briefly, and that it can take just one mating (over in seconds) to get her pregnant.
 

jonnyss

TCS Member
Kitten
Joined
Mar 26, 2022
Messages
3
Purraise
1
they say, if it walks like and quacks like a duck, it's a duck. i say, if it jumps like a snowshoe and meows like a snowshoe, it's a snowshoe.
those of you who state so forcefully what a snowshoe is and is not seem to me entitled to your opinions, but i doubt that you can decree that the owners of pet-quality snowshoes are wrong. imo you within your rights as breeders to speak of what would make a cat a show-quality snowshoe or a pedigree snowshoe. as with all breeds, the criteria for a pet-quality snowshoe are not as strict - and you don't own those criteria. certainly, the hundreds of owners on the several facebook snowshoe forums disagree with you.
it's also my understanding that the original snowshoes bred by dorothy hinds-daugherty were siamese crossed with tuxedo american shorthairs - so clearly all snowshoes are not descended from a male and a female snowshoe. it's unnecessarily condescending to disrespect the cats of others by saying they can't be snowshoes without 2 snowshoe parents. it would, in fact, be more accurate to say all snowshoes are crosses or their descendants.
that said, imo i wouldn't describe the lovely cat being presented as a calico snowshoe. calicos have, as justsanker observed, genes for both orange and black and are almost always female. this lovely cat would appear to have markings that are substantially, but not entirely, siamese and tuxedo. therefore the cat appears to be a non-purebred or non-pedigree snowshoe (or perhaps a snowshoe mix or "mostly snowshoe") as the terms are commonly understood. if the cat turns out to have 2 snowshoe parents, than it is purebred but not show quality as i understand the terms.
 

jonnyss

TCS Member
Kitten
Joined
Mar 26, 2022
Messages
3
Purraise
1
hmmm...i don't see a way to edit my post, so i will use a second post to add to it:
as i understand the rules of naming hybrids in biology, if you remake a cross, you get a hybrid with the original hybrid name, not a hybrid "lookalike." in fact, if you assign a new name, it is disallowed; you have to use the old name for the cross. happens all the time in the plant world. since the original snowshoes were a cross between a siamese and a tuxedo american shorthair, the same cross today could certainly produce (or reproduce) a legitimate snowshoe. there are lots of siamese and lots of tuxedos around, so there are going to be legitimate new baby snowshoes every year from these matings. i respect that, sure, you would not consider these pedigree cats, but they would still be snowshoes, perhaps wild snowshoes would be the term.
 

cataholic07

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Jul 28, 2014
Messages
1,406
Purraise
1,601
If you are going to breed and label the kittens as purebred then both parents must be registered purebred cats with an ancestry. Way too many people sell kittens as such and such breed or a mix and it's a scam just to make money versus what actual breeders do which is to preserve the breed they love. Breeders sell pet-quality kittens all of the time, yes, but they still do genetic testing and yearly health tests to ensure the parents are healthy and reduce potential health risks of the kittens. Any breeder who is bringing more kittens into this heavily overpopulated world must be responsible. True breeders never overbreed and have a lengthy waiting list. This means that any kittens who are born already have a potential home.

Breeding a tuxedo to a siamese wouldn't produce snowshoes. Not unless the tuxedo had the colorpoint gene, otherwise the kittens would be tuxedo, blacks or tabbies. :)

The cat who was posted would have been a tortie point, not a calico snowshoe. That coloring is quite common, even in DSH/DLHs nowadays. I had a foster who was a torbie lynx point and one of her kittens was a tortie point. Both had high white so a bit hard to see the cream (especially the kitten) but it was on her nose and tail. Wanted to foster fail soo badly but my senior cat said NOPE lol. Was so very sad. Rosa had three colorpoints (2 longhairs, 1 shorthair), a tuxedo and a ginger/white.
20180415_111126.jpg
20180415_114407.jpg
 

Meowmee

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
May 2, 2018
Messages
1,946
Purraise
2,076
Pb Snowshoes are pretty rare. I could only find 3 breeders in the past few months in the us although there may be more. Two at least were breeding primarily siamese cats as well and made no mention of breeding with any american shorthair tuxedos, nor of breeding snow shoe to snow shoe.

Although the original breeder, Dorothy Hinds Daughtery did do that, her first snow shoes resulted from white spotting with white paws in 3 siamese kittens, called Silver Lace, and she apparently bred them with american shorthair bicolor cats. Which may account for the signature face markings snow shoes have. It is difficult to get the various genetic components to aline which is needed for the approved pb snow shoe look.

See link: Snowshoe cat - Wikipedia
 
Top