What colour are your cat’s eyes?  There are many different cat eye colours, which is determined by the amount of melanin in their DNA, handed down form their mother and father.  The colour or a cat’s eyes, like the colour of its coat, is often hereditary.

Have you heard the old wives’ tale that feeding a cat fish causes its eye colour to change?  Well, that’s false!  Kittens always have blue eyes, but the adult colour develops at about six to seven weeks.  By the age of twelve weeks, a cat’s final eye colour will be fully developed.

The most common eye colour for cats is yellow/amber, followed by hazel eyes.

Cats with blue eyes actually don’t have any melanin in their irises!  Blue eyes are actually clear, but we see the blue colour due to light reflecting around the curved sides of their irises.  Blue eyes are also more common in white cats.

If your cat has orange eyes, there is a chance that it is a descendant of a breed developed by the British; they wanted an eye colour that could stand out in vivid relief against any coat colour.  Maine Coons can often have orange eyes.

Copper is the darkest eye colour you’ll see in cats. Their eyes will be light brown with tones of red and orange. Sometimes there may be flecks of yellow, green, or orange. This is a rarer colour than some others, and while it’s distinguishable from orange, it’s just as unusual.

And then you get cats with two different coloured eyes, also known as heterochromia iridium, which refers to the fact that each iris is a different colour. This can be inherited, congenital (a genetic “mistake” as the cat’s embryo is developing), or the cause of an accident or injury.

The most rare eye colouring in a cat is dichromatic, where the eyes will have a combination of two distinct colours within both eyes.  It’s caused by the cat having different levels of melanin in distinct sections of their irises.  Sometimes, the eyes will have a distinct oval of one colour nearer the pupil, which then blends out into another colour. Other times, the colours will be split into sections, so a quarter or half of the eye will be one colour, and the remaining section will be a different colour.

Whatever eye colour your cat has, it’s absolutely perfect!  It’s the combination of each cat’s eye colour, coat colour, and personality that makes us love them, no matter what!

Last modified: October 7, 2023