The term “polydactyl” means many toes, it is a genetic mutation among felines that gives them extra toes on the front feet and sometimes even on the back. Normally, cats have 4 front toes and one declaw on the inside of their leg, a little bit above their toes. A polydactyl cat can appear to have mitten’s by having several extra dewclaws. Some cats can have 7-8 toes on each front foot!
Famous polydactyl cats live in Key West, Florida at the Ernest Hemmingway Museum. He brought a polydactyl cat to Florida, upon his ship, and a colony has been there ever since. Currently the museum has about 60 resident cats, about half of which are polydactyl.
For more info on the Hemmingway museum and their cats, visit: http://www.hemingwayhome.com/HTML/our_cats.htm
“Apollo” is a polydactyl kitten that was recently adopted from Frederick County Animal Control by one of our clients. He has 7 toes on each front foot and 5 toes on each back foot- a total of 24 toes in all (6 extra)!!!
Owners Paul and Michelle Contant of Ontario, Canada own the Guinness World record holder polydactyl cat. “Jake”has 28 toes, with 7 on each paw, as counted by a veterinarian on 24 September 2002.
For more info and pictures of polydactyl cats, visit: http://www.cat-breeds-info.com/polydactyl-cats.html