Does a cat's stripes or spots go all the way to his skin?

United States
December 16, 2007 6:38pm CST
I've heard that cheetah and leapard spots go all the way to the skin. The spots are sort of like a tattoo on their skin, so even without fur you can see the pattern. And, I was wondering if domestic household cats are the same. I have tried peeking into my cats fur to see if his stripes and spots go all the way to his skin. But, I can't see anything. Does anyone know if this holds true for regular house cats? Does a domestic cats stripes or spots go all the way to their skin? Or, are they just on the fur? Just curious. Would love to know.
1 person likes this
9 responses
@wiccania (3362)
• United States
17 Dec 07
As far as I know, a domestic cats stripes and markings are only on the fur. Their skin is all the same color. I've known people with tabbies and calicos who had to have sections of their skin shaved for some purpose or another (surgery mostly) and their skin was solid pink underneath the stripes and stuff.
• United States
18 Dec 07
That's what I thought! I guess it's just true for the big cats. Perhaps the big wild cats are "tattooed" that way by nature to keep them safe or hidden in their natural environment. Thanks for dropping by.
8 Aug 11
Our cat (gray stripes) had surgery. They had to shave part of her fur and she had some beautiful black strips runing from her head down her back and into the fur. So I do believe that stripes go down to the skin.
@hv1peer (113)
• Netherlands
17 Dec 07
Cats stripes or spots doesn't go all the way to their skin.
1 person likes this
• United States
17 Dec 07
maybe that's why they say "you can't change a leopard's spots"??
1 person likes this
• United States
15 Dec 08
my tiger striped kitten just got spayed and on her belly where they shaved, there are some black stripes on the pink skin. is my kitten unusual or do other cats have this also?
• United States
18 May 09
My cat is gray and white spotted, and her skin is the same color as her fur. Must just be some cats' skin matches their fur.
@lilybug (21185)
• United States
17 Dec 07
As far as I have ever seen on my cats they fur is the only thing that is striped. Our indoor cat looks like he has pink skin under his brown, black and white fur.
• United States
18 Dec 07
Yes, I believe my cat's skin is the same way. He has lots of fur, so it's hard to tell. Well, there's that and the fact that he does not like being groomed, so I can't get him to sit still long enough to take a peek into his fur for long.
@dawnald (83815)
• Shingle Springs, California
9 Aug 11
I've seen cats with their fur shaved, and no, it doesn't.
@jmt057 (2)
• United States
18 May 09
My current cat definitely has skin color to match he fur color. My guess is that tabbies don't have matching skin, just pink skin, because the "tabby" look actually comes from the single hairs having differet colors on them (i.e. black at bottom, brown in middle, tan near top). But for solid colors, my cat's skin is the same. She is gray and white, and where her fur is white, her skin is pink. Where her fur is gray, her skin is gray. It's so weird! :)
• United States
9 Apr 09
my kitty has black/brown and white stripes, but if you were to shave about an inch off him, he'd be a white kitty! when he sheds his fur i noticed it was white with dark tips. I guess the furs know when to turn black to make the stipes so perfect! haha
@marinarovi (1318)
• Argentina
17 Dec 07
I don't think so... when my cat had surgery (you know, so they can't have kittens, I don't know the word in english)... the vet shaved her on the side, where she has a bit of dark hair, and the side was all light brown, not even close to the way her hair looks now... But I can't be sure, I haven't shaved her completely, hehe