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Dilute Modifier

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
I'm wondering if anybody here can tell me about the dilute modifier.

I've seen how it lovely it can make the blues and creams on the Persians (that and powder packing ) and I'm curious how it works when you are breeding for it. Does it show up when you keep doing dilute x dilute breedings? Can non-dilute cats carry the gene, and if so, how does their color present itself when they do?
post #2 of 21
What a lovely question! I have no answer! I only breed ruddies and reds remember???
post #3 of 21
The dilute modifier (Dm) only changes the colour of cats that are dilute ie homozygous for dilute. It changes blue and lilac to blue based and lilac based caramel (sometimes called taupe), and changes cream to apricot.

Because it is a dominant gene, it can't hide or be carried without showing up by dilutes. So if you have blue/lilac/fawn cats, they do not have the Dm gene and cannot pass it to offspring. However, it CAN hide in non dilutes - a black cat can carry the Dm gene without it affecting the appearance of the black coat. If that black cat carries dilute and is mated to a dilute or dilute carrier, then you can get caramels from the mating.

Using standard allele abbreviations - Where B=Black, d=dilute and D=non-dilute, Dm=dilute modifier and dm=non modifier, these are the various genotype and phenotype possibilities:

BB DD dmdm = Black cat
BB Dd dmdm = Black cat, carries dilute
BB Dd Dmdm = Black cat, carries dilute, carries dilute modifier (50% chance of it being passed to offspring)
BB Dd DmDm = Black cat, carries dilute, carries dilute modifier (all offspring will inherit dilute modifier)
BB dd dmdm = Blue cat
BB dd Dmdm = Blue based caramel cat
BB dd DmDm = Blue based caramel cat

I have ignored the chocolates/lilacs, cinnamons/fawns and red series or I'd be typing all day with the different combinations but that's the gist of it.
post #4 of 21
Dilute to Dilute will give you all dilute.

If its a non-dilute bred to a dilute - you may get dilute ONLY if the non-dilute is a carrier (usually can tell in the first few generations).

You can get dilute even if both non-dilute parents are bred - IF they both carry the dilute gene.
post #5 of 21
Dilute to dilute = all dilute kittens
dilute x non carrier = all kittens will carry for dilute (its a recessive and all they have to give)
dilute to carrier = some kittens can be dilute
carrier to carrier = some kittens can be dilute.
Its the same dynamics as the colorpoint gene, its a recessive and if the cat is the recessive it can't carry for the genes of those that carry it (anotherward a blue tabby can't carry for black tabby but a black tabby can carry for blue).

If one parent is dilute, all kittens from that cat will carry for the gene and if a dilute is mated to another dilute all you will get is dilute.

Now blues can and do carry for tarnishing as carryover from the high ruffousing gene. My boy from siberia has grandparents that are foundation (found feral or made foundation from someones pet originally from the local geographic region) and they have produced blue and golden (they are carriers as found by mating Moscow goldens to them).

My boy Tayga is a blue classic and when mated to my blue cream tortie smoke, all kittens will be dilute. However, my boy Tayga also is from a blue to blue silver mating and his grandfather is a high ruffoused brown tabby and the mom has tarnish from the tarnished silver in her pedigree so he appears to have an almost lilac color. However, we purposely chose this to help continue the warm brown in my lines which I adore.

On top of that, blues and creams have softer coats and finer hair generally, at least in Persians and Siberians they do (not related just the way the cookie crumbles), so you have to infuse other colors like brown tabby to keep the coat correct. My Tayga has a good coat (you can search the threads, there is a pic on here of him).

Now Bella from the silver line in her got the leaner muscles and narrower type (not my breeding goal and thus she is being retired, I bred her to see what she produced with a VERY strong typed male) so when playing with silver and blues and little to no tarnish, you get gorgeous color but the size and type can wane and you have to be careful there.

Now the red spectrum, cream works as blue does, a calico or variant carrying dilute can produce the dilute of themselves depending on whether they carry solid (both parents) or not, will depend whether you get a tortie (black and red or blue and cream non patterned genetically solid) or torbie (calico or variant tabby). The creams tend to retain type but coat can be an issue.

So in summary, dilute can be carried and it presents itself in the same way a dilute to dilute pairing would, but the non dilute pairings tend to produce better coat and size, but the other tarnish factors can be a hassle if its not what you want.

Hope that helps as the red, black and blue tabby, solid and dilute variants are my color pallet so to speak. I will soon be adding more silver and golden to my program and the warm brown will help that line as it takes warm brown to keep type and infuse diversity in a golden pool but thats another topic entirely.

Daisy
post #6 of 21
Also, UC Davis has a test to see if a cat is a dilute carrier.
Daisy
post #7 of 21
The dilute modifier is a different gene to the dilute gene though, it causes blues/lilacs/fawns to become caramels and creams to become apricots.
post #8 of 21
Thread Starter 
Daisy and Epona, thank you for all the information.

Epona: Is the dilute modifier found mostly in OSH cats?

Daisy: Is tarnishing on a dilute the same as patina? Or is it something less desirable? Is it penalized in the Sib standard?
post #9 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by FerrisCat View Post
Daisy and Epona, thank you for all the information.

Epona: Is the dilute modifier found mostly in OSH cats?

Daisy: Is tarnishing on a dilute the same as patina? Or is it something less desirable? Is it penalized in the Sib standard?
It's far more common in OSH than in most other breeds yes, personally I prefer normal dilutes, caramel is a difficult colour to get right and not one I personally find particularly attractive! Also once it's been introduced into a line you're at least halving your chance of producing normal dilutes - I think the popularity of caramel in the OSH is one reason why I have never seen a blue OSH at a show, a normal blue is quite rare these days.
post #10 of 21
The Oci's have lavendar and fawn in the 12 color choices Tawny, chocolate, cinnamon, blue, lavender, fawn (and those colors with the silver). Lavender is the "dilute" of chocolate and Fawn is the "dilute" of cinnamon.
post #11 of 21
Thread Starter 
How do lavender and fawn look with the dilute modifier? Is it easy to tell which color the cat originally was to produce the caramel? Is the color allowed mainly in OSH cats, or have other breeds started to tinker it. I recall reading something about it popping up in some NWF lines. . .

I understand how dilute works fairly well (all of my TUVs are dilute carriers) but this dilute modifier thing has my head in circles

And since the dilute modifier isn't at all responsible for those pale, pale dilute persians I sometimes see in the show hall, what is? Just good old fashioned selective breeding?
post #12 of 21
Here's some color pictures of Ocicats - not sure if that will help, but will give you an idea of the shading

http://catiators.ocicat.com/abtcolors.htm
post #13 of 21
Thread Starter 
Well now, that's just cool Very interesting to see how all the colors develop into one another.
post #14 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by FerrisCat View Post
How do lavender and fawn look with the dilute modifier? Is it easy to tell which color the cat originally was to produce the caramel? Is the color allowed mainly in OSH cats, or have other breeds started to tinker it. I recall reading something about it popping up in some NWF lines. . .
Lilac (which is the same as lavender, the term varies from one country to another) and Fawn if they are turned to caramel by the dilute modifier are virtually indistinguishable by eye, I was unable to find any photo on google of an OSH identified as a fawn based caramel, not too surprising as fawn is not too common in OSH at this time. Here is a link to a photo of a lilac based caramel ticked tabby OSH, and this is what happens to cream apricot OSH. To put it in basic terms, the dilute modifier gene adds a shiny pale brown tone to the coat of a dilute.

Quote:
Originally Posted by FerrisCat View Post
I understand how dilute works fairly well (all of my TUVs are dilute carriers) but this dilute modifier thing has my head in circles
It is not the easiest thing to get your head around - it's a dominant gene that acts on a different recessive gene, so inheritance is not as straightforward as most colour/coat traits!

Quote:
Originally Posted by FerrisCat View Post
And since the dilute modifier isn't at all responsible for those pale, pale dilute persians I sometimes see in the show hall, what is? Just good old fashioned selective breeding?
If they were really very pale, I wonder if they weren't smokes/silvers* or even chinchillas. Did you get close enough to see whether the colour went all the way to the roots?

With a smoke at least the bottom third of the hair is white, and with chinchillas the hair is mostly white with colour only at the tips. In Persians with the length of their coats this is very attractive, and can give the appearance of lightening the colours, chinchillas are almost white cats that seem to shimmer with very pale tones. The appearance of silver in a coat is caused by the inhibitor gene which is dominant, but how much of the hair shaft is left white is controlled by other genes and is more complex.

*Not familiar with the official colour names for Persians so I don't know if I have used the right terminology for the breed!
post #15 of 21
Tarnishing isnt penalized in siberians but depending on the breeding program and color pallette, whether its desirable. On my blue boy, its not the greatest because it resembles lilac which isn't a allowed color. However, his tarnishing isn't as much as some and moreso I am using his tarnish with my brown girls to warm up the brown and contribute to goldens. If I was running a blue or silver program, its not a good thing as his ruffousing would tarnish the silver and the blues. So for his it isn't the greatest but for his offspring, it gives more potential for the color palette he is contributing too as black tabby is the base of my program. Add solid black, red and dilute and thats my spectrum.
Daisy
post #16 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Epona View Post
If they were really very pale, I wonder if they weren't smokes/silvers* or even chinchillas. Did you get close enough to see whether the colour went all the way to the roots?
The could well have been dilute smokes/silvers. The one I am thinking of in particular was a calico and part of the particolor division. Are particolor smokes and silvers part of that same division in CFA? Or are they in a different division? Or are they AOV?

BTW, I love what the dilute modifier does to the cream. Apricot is vibrant and lovely! I'm not sure if I like it much on the other diluted colors, it looks a bit muddy to me. Perhaps its one of those things that might look better on a dilute with more "tarnish." I am thinking its one of those things that enhances a warm dilute color, but really makes a cooler dilute color look muddy.
post #17 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by FerrisCat View Post
The could well have been dilute smokes/silvers. The one I am thinking of in particular was a calico and part of the particolor division. Are particolor smokes and silvers part of that same division in CFA? Or are they in a different division? Or are they AOV?
Hopefully someone else will be able to answer that as I know little about Persians and even less about CFA divisions!

In the OSH (please forgive me for keep referring back to the breed, it is the one about which I am most knowledgeable) if you were to line up calico dilutes of different colours, the overall appearance of the coat colour lightens from blue/cream to lilac/cream to fawn/cream, all 3 are basically different shades and tones of grey, each one paler than the last.

Blue, as far as the showring is concerned, should always be a medium gunmetal grey with no silver tipping in the OSH, a paler shade of blue that is veering too much towards lilac would be considerably marked down as colour ranks very high in the points awarded. Selective breeding could indeed result in paler or darker blue cats, but you wouldn't see them in the showring.

I would now love to see a photo of the cat you describe, it may help solve the mystery!

Quote:
Originally Posted by FerrisCat View Post
BTW, I love what the dilute modifier does to the cream. Apricot is vibrant and lovely! I'm not sure if I like it much on the other diluted colors, it looks a bit muddy to me. Perhaps its one of those things that might look better on a dilute with more "tarnish." I am thinking its one of those things that enhances a warm dilute color, but really makes a cooler dilute color look muddy.
I agree, I think Apricot is a beautiful warm colour, Caramel on the other hand is a bit dull and uninteresting, there's no richness or warmth to it. I am not sure about the tarnish issue though, the standard of points calls for a metallic sheen to the Caramel, rufousing would give a richer depth to the colour tone but would likely lessen the light refraction from the coat as it's a redder colour (light at the blue end of the spectrum scatters more readily than red) - so I think the colour has to stay 'cold' to give the correct appearance.
post #18 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by FerrisCat View Post
The could well have been dilute smokes/silvers. The one I am thinking of in particular was a calico and part of the particolor division. Are particolor smokes and silvers part of that same division in CFA? Or are they in a different division? Or are they AOV?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Epona View Post
Hopefully someone else will be able to answer that as I know little about Persians and even less about CFA divisions!
(Quickly flipping breed standards...)

Particolors are their own division - of that I am very sure!

Shaded and Smokes their own division and

Silvers and Golden have their very own division too!

post #19 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Epona View Post

I would now love to see a photo of the cat you describe, it may help solve the mystery!

I'm on it! I'll make it my mission today to find a photo
post #20 of 21
As someone pointed out, its hard to really photograph some of those colors and get a good picture. I was talking to Jack's breeder regarding the Oci's with the color/silver - and she told me they look a lot better in person then in photos.
post #21 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
As someone pointed out, its hard to really photograph some of those colors and get a good picture. I was talking to Jack's breeder regarding the Oci's with the color/silver - and she told me they look a lot better in person then in photos.
That is my oft repeated gripe GK, and there I am wanting a photo - more out of curiosity, the description is quite intriguing
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