Why do dogs go grey but cats don’t?

Whilst Fido is showing his age, Felix is still being ID'd.

8th September 2017
Why do dogs go grey but cats don’t? (Getty)

Asked by: John Duncan Pawson, Scarborough

Strictly speaking, cats can go grey. Some cats will go grey as they age but not on the scale that dogs and humans do. As our feline friends mature, they retain enough melanocytes – the cells in the hair follicles responsible for the production of the pigment melanin – to ensure that the colouring process does not significantly diminish. We are not sure why this is the case. For example, it is possible that cats are born with a greater number of melanocytes in the first place, or that they simply don’t decline at the same rate as they do in dogs. 

 

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