When Will Teen Cat Get His Adult Fur?

IronHippo

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I am a first time cat owner and my little big boy, Radish, is about 8 months old now. I did a lot of research before I got him (which is how I found this community!) but I never could find a definitive answer on when I could expect him to start losing his super soft kitten fur and growing in his adult coat. (This particular bit of research was so that I could prepare myself with lint rollers and extra brushing and stuff.) I found sources ranging from starting at 5 months to 7 months, with all agreeing that the adult coat should be in by 1 year. I'm just super curious because I read that when kittens shed their kitten coats and get adult coats, it's supposed to be noticeable--like puffs of kitten fur coming out as the adult coat comes in. He doesn't shed very much at all (when I brush him, hardly anything comes off). He was initially a skinny little guy at 2 months and then, around the 5-month mark, started noticeably growing what my husband and I refer to as his "mutton chops." They've just been growing and growing since then--this past weekend he was reclining on my lap and his little face just looked like it was poking out of a fur-lined parka hood. His fur, especially his muttonchops, is still as cloudy soft as it was at 2 months, and I honestly wouldn't mind if he stayed like that as an adult, but should I be concerned that he is still so puffy and hasn't seemed to start shedding his kitten fur yet? In the community's wise collective opinions, is he going to get his adult coat one of these days, and when do you think that will happen? Has anyone had a "late bloomer" kitten fur shedder, or is the shedding actually not as noticeable as the sites I've read make it out to be? Or is he maybe doomed to suffocation in muttonchoppery (a semi-serious thought that's crossed my mind from time to time, as we live in a tropical climate!)? The Humane Society listed him as a "domestic mediumhair," "size: Small" (it was true at the time), and that's all we know about him, other than his age.

Pics, of course (apologies for all of the sideways photos; I don't know how to fix that and I swear they are oriented correctly in my photo gallery):


Here he is around 2 months old. No chops in sight, just a cute little puff of pom-pom behind each ear which I told him I hoped he would keep as he grew up. And did he...


Coming up on 4 months, still pretty clean- shaven (and getting gangly). In hindsight, can kind of start to see his pom-poms are starting to stick out under his ears, but nothing too extreme.


5 months here, you can see that white rim starting in around his face. This is when we started calling his pom-poms "muttonchops" instead.


7 months! I didn't think he could get muttonchoppier, until...


...this past weekend. 8 months. He is disappearing into his face fur!


Bonus photo, also from this past weekend. He used to fit so nicely into my lap, and now he overflows!

Thanks for your thoughts!
 

abyeb

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Charlie never had a transition from kitten fur to adult cat fur. He stayed as silky soft as ever. :)

I have not personally seen any cats who have had a dramatic transition from kitten fur to adult fur. One cat owner I met said that their cat's fur felt "harder" as an adult than as a kitten, but that's about it.

One fur transition that can be very noticeable is seasonal changes. Longhaired cats especially will grow thicker fur for the winter months, and then "blow coat" in the summer. You can see some interesting pictures showing that here: Seasonal Changes
 

lutece

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Your adorable Radish is a brown mackerel tabby domestic longhair. And I think the answer to your question is that there isn't a moment when the kitten coat falls out and the adult coat suddenly grows in... this can be a more or less gradual process. I love your photo series!
 

Diana Faye

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LOL "mutton chops," that's perfect.

I don't have an answer for you, but I'm interested to find out as I have a 5 mo and 7 mo pair who haven't been shedding and still feel soft. The older one has pretty much evolved into "cat form" from what I can tell, and the younger I've only noticed a growth spurt and his grey coat getting a bit darker and more uniform. I'm not sure how much is age and how much is winter fur, but the lack of hair is amazing.
 
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IronHippo

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Charlie never had a transition from kitten fur to adult cat fur. He stayed as silky soft as ever. :)

I have not personally seen any cats who have had a dramatic transition from kitten fur to adult fur. One cat owner I met said that their cat's fur felt "harder" as an adult than as a kitten, but that's about it.

One fur transition that can be very noticeable is seasonal changes. Longhaired cats especially will grow thicker fur for the winter months, and then "blow coat" in the summer. You can see some interesting pictures showing that here: Seasonal Changes
Oo that thread is so interesting! I'd heard that cat fur has seasonal changes but I didn't know it could be so extreme! We don't really have short days/cold nights where we are, but I wonder if Radish will have such an extreme change anyway. I think his muttonchops are "blow coat" texture right now. Anyway, that's interesting about there not being a really dramatic transition...I guess not everything I read on the Internet is true! ;)

Your adorable Radish is a brown mackerel tabby domestic longhair. And I think the answer to your question is that there isn't a moment when the kitten coat falls out and the adult coat suddenly grows in... this can be a more or less gradual process. I love your photo series!
Hmm interesting! I always thought he was more gray or black! How can you tell when they are brown instead?

I would like to see more kitten --> adult transition photos...I saw a time lapse series on Instagram this past weekend and it's amazing how different an adult cat can look from its tiny weeks old kitten age.
 

lalagimp

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I've never noticed any of the kids going through textural changes in their coats as they got older, but with Tom his tabby markings faded away, Yue changed from lilac to medium-deep heather, and Ashley didn't finish poofing out until he was closer to a year. I think around 8 months he was still a medium coat. It was ridiculous. He looked like we tried to groom him with a flowbee.
 
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IronHippo

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To update this: Radish is now ~9.5 months old and he is noticeably starting to shed! He has finally decided he likes being brushed, and I'm now getting a good buildup of fur off of him. It might help that he is holding still and letting me brush him for longer now, but previously no matter how many times I swiped him with a brush I would get a scant patch of fur off of him. Now I'm getting proper furballs. Also, he is leaving little patches of fur on the floor. I don't know if it's his age or the season (although, again, I live in a tropical climate and we don't really get seasons or noticeably shorter daylight hours out here), but one thing is for sure: It's time to start buying lint rollers.

Meanwhile, his mutton chops continue to bloom, and my favorite thing to do is brush them upwards so that he looks like Albert Einstein. He is still very soft.
 

Kflowers

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He maybe losing his summer coat to make way for his winter coat.

The six kittens we've had over the years didn't have a noticeable change in coat texture at a year, or ever. The only time I noticed such a change was when we'd rescue an outside cat. Their coats and health were a bit rough to real rough, when we brought them inside. After a few months of care, their health improved and their coats became softer.

This was true of the 5 week old kitten we rescued, but her coat softened in a matter of two weeks. She was healthy, just deeply dusty from the outside nest.
 
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