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The 411: Youth

Meet my cat, Two-Two

Meet my cat, Two-Two
Lauryn’s polydactyl cat, Two-Two

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Junior Journalists
December 12, 2012
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By Lauryn Conston

Recently I have acquired a black and white kitten from my grandma. From far away the common viewer wouldn’t be able to see anything unusual about this cat but up close he is not what he seems. After close examination of this kitten, the viewer would be most captivated by his feet.

The common house cat has only 16 toes not including its dewclaws. My cat, fondly known as “Twenty-Two,” is six toes above the common amount, totaling 22 toes in all. He has five toes on each of his front paws and six toes on each of his back paws. So the name Twenty-Two is only appropriate, right? Well not exactly, the true name of this unique cat is polydactyl cat, polydactyl meaning many, and in this case many toes. Two-Two, as I like to call him, is unique in his own way but popular in many others.

Ernest Hemingway, a Nobel Prize-winning author, had a peculiar interest in this kind of cat. Hemingway acquired his first polydactyl cat, named Snowball, from a ship captain. His house in Key West, Florida, is now a museum and the home of more than 40 different cats, most of which are polydactyl.

Two-Two doesn’t have extra cat senses or whatever the myth might be, but he can out-climb my other cats easily. Whether this is the benefit of being younger than the other cats or the advantage of having extra toes, I don’t know, but regardless, Two-Two is unique in more than one way. Have you looked at your cat’s feet lately? If you have not, I recommend you check to see if your cat is a polydactyl cat.

Junior Journalist Lauryn Coston is a junior at Stockdale High School. She is a member of the National Honor Society, Student Council, and FCA. She plays basketball, softball, and tennis. Lauryn is the daughter of Randy and Karen Coston.

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