Apr 032016

I'm a polycat

Hi guys! Most of you know that I’m a polydactyl cat…meaning I have extra toesies. Today I thought I’d share some interesting facts about polydactyl cats, or polycats…as I like to call myself.

Polydactylism is a genetic condition passed down through a dominant gene. Some say it’s an abnormality, but I don’t think it’s abnormal at all. If one parent cat is polydactyl and the other has normal toes, then as many as 40-50% of their kittens will have extra toes. I wonder which one of my cat-parents had the extra toes.

Extra toesies on my front pawsCats usually have a total of 18 toes…5 on each front paw and 4 on the rear ones. A polycat can have as many as 8 toes on either the front or rear paws. I have 7 on each of my front paws and 5 on my rear, for a total of 24 toes.

While it’s not uncommon for a cat to have extra toes on the front paws, it’s rarer to have extra toes on the rear. I always knew I was rare!

The Guinness Book of World Records recognizes a Canadian cat named Jake as holding the record for the most toes. Jake had a total of 28 toes. Hey, he beat me by 4 toes!

Maine Coon cats have the highest incident of polydactylism. At one time, as many as 40% of all Maine Coons had extra toes.

In olden days, sailors thought polycats were lucky and would travel the high seas with polycats onboard. I bet sailing is fun!

Polycats are sometimes called Hemingway Cats. The famous author, Ernest Hemingway (can you figure out how I got my name?), had a polycat named Snowball who went onto have a number of extra-toes kittens. Today, many of Snowball’s descendants can be found at Hemingway’s home in Key West, Florida. They’re considered historical treasures…as they should be.

But about myself, all I can say is having extra toesies makes me extra special…at least that’s what the mom tells me. And now…here’s my extra-toesies selfie.

My extra toesies selfie

Can you count all 24 of them?


Me and all of my toesies are pawticipating in
The Cat on My Head’s Sunday Selfies Blog Hop.
To join the Hop or to see other selfies
click HERE!


  68 Responses to “Easy E’s Extra Toesies Selfie Sunday”

  1. We have always thought you were special Ernie with all your extra toes. Wish we had those extra toes. You all have a great Sunday.

  2. You’re a fine fellow of a kitty Ernie,xx Speedy

  3. Squeee! Mom loves extra toesie kitties… and all that sleek black fur and Ize in loves too. – Lulu.

    Me hopes you stops by to see my fun selfie too and to purr for Jolly who just had life saving surgery. Purrz from Lulu and Katie Mom.

  4. We didn’t know al that about “extra toes”. We think it is cool.

  5. Look at those toes. Reminds me of my Victory who had extra toes. Made her extra special. Happy April! from the Paws clan.

  6. Ernie, I LOVE seeing those and learning more about them. I would hate to be smacked by YOU.

  7. We always knew you were special!!! Mom is squeeeing over your toesies!!

    The Florida Furkids

  8. Ernie that was a most interesting post….I didn’t realize you could have extra toes on the back….
    WOW…I bet you can dig some fantastic spots in the litter box.
    So mom wants to know how long it takes to clip 24 toes? Dad holds me like a baby while she does mine and OMCs it better be fast cause I don’t like being held that way.
    Hugs madi your bfff

  9. What a lucky black kitty! LOVE THISE TOES!

  10. What a lucky black kitty! LOVE THISE TOES! If Ihave said this before it is because it is TRUE!

  11. ::squeeeee:: our mom has a thing for pawsies and she just loves to see yours, Ernie. we think your front mitts are the cutest 😀 pawsome pawsie selfie 😀 we wonder if having too many extra toes would make it difficult to walk. have a great easy E Sunday!

    pip, smidgen, minnie, hollie, sharpie, ditto

  12. I didn’t know all that about polydactyl kitties and I didn’t know you were named after Ernest Hemingway. Ernie is such a cute nickname. All those toes really do make you special.

  13. Those sure are some awesome toesies, Ernie!

  14. Your extra toes are extra-special. Very cool. Thanks for sharing all that info with us. 🙂

  15. Interesting stuff… I never knew that’s where your name came from.

  16. We always, always knew you were extra special Ernie!

  17. You are very special Ernie. My Polar Bear has extra toes, but not as many as you.

  18. Why, you are special in many ways, Ernie, including for your toesies. 🙂 They are adorable!

  19. We love extra toes!

  20. Ernie, I did enjoy the info. As you know mom and dad were at Hemingway’s House…although they weren’t invited. The polycats were a high point in there trip.


  21. You have a wealth of toesies, Ernie!

  22. You are a very handsome mancat with supremely cool toes.

  23. Whatever number of toes you’ve got you’re gorgeous anyway

  24. You have lovely toesies, Ernie.

  25. We think your extra toesies are awesome!!

  26. I love your toosies, Ernie, I wish I had extra toesies too 🙂 Pawkisses for a Happy Week 🙂 <3

  27. Mum says that’s more toesies to smooch ! Purrs

  28. Your toesies are spectacular, Ernie!! You make us other kitties look kinda ordinary!!

  29. Black polys are especially lucky, so Ernie you got it in spades 🙂

  30. Awwwww, sweet Ernie those are great Toesie Selfies…we love your toes and you. You are furs are so shiny and you are most handsome. Hugs and nose kisses

  31. Mee-you Ernie mee furend wee not know yur a Polly Kat!!!! An now wee know how you gotted yur name….
    LadyMum sayss “D’OH”….shee said shee should have known this.
    Yur so hansum an yes yur speshell fur sure. An wee iss glad Mistur Hemingway’ss Katss are Nashunall Treasuress!!
    Just like YOU!!!
    ***Hi-5’sss*** Siddhartha Henry =^,.^=

  32. You toesies are just magnificent, Ernie! It definitely does make you extra special.

  33. Wow! I wish I had extra toes!! My distant cousin (Angel) Rufus was a poly cat. That’s the closest I get to have extra toes!!

  34. Ernie, I didn’t know you got your name after Hemingway! That’s so cool. Being polycat, no, it’s not abnormal, it’s what makes you really special 🙂 Great extra toesies selfie, Ernie!

  35. That is pawsome Ernie! We knew you were special, just not how furry special.

  36. What gawgiss toesies! So cute!

  37. I didn’t know you had extra toesies …guess that makes extra special!

  38. Great post and history lesson. Thank you for sharing your 24 toesies with us!

  39. YAY Ernie! So close to the poly record too………..you have me beat too buddy. I don’t have as many “extras” as you do but still, my Mom loves each and every one of my toesies too.

    Hugs, Sammy

  40. Oh boy, Ernie, our mom is so in love with all those extra toesies!

  41. New news for me Ernie. I had no idea you were a poly cat. Very special indeed. Your toesies are very cool

  42. I think your feet are spectacular.

  43. We love polys. Maggie is our second. We think it is beautiful! And we love Ernie, too. XO

  44. Our mommy loves toesies. She’d love to have a polycat. Years ago, it was possible to put your name on a list to adopt one of Snowball’s descendants. Mom wishes she could have gotten in on that. It must take lots of extra grooming time to keep that many toes clean. Thanks for showing them off, Ernie. XOCK, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Fiona, Astrid, Lisbeth and Calista Jo

  45. Your sleek shiny self is enhanced by your elegant (extra) toesies!
    Yup, Furry spawsial indeed!

  46. Holy smokes! Lots of toes you have there! None of mine have extras, but I’ve seen quite a few come through the shelter in the last year or so. And happily, they all get adopted quickly. People seek out those extra toes when they’re looking for new kitties!

    Jean from Welcome to the Menagerie

  47. Wow! This is all new to us!

    Your Pals,

    Murphy and Stanley

  48. Thanks for sharing Ernie!

  49. That’s a lot of toes! I bet you could dial the phone to Japan if you wanted!

  50. More toes just means your parent gets more love when you’re kneading her!

  51. I love extra toe cats!

  52. I knew Hemingway had polycats. But I didn’t know sailors thought they were lucky and would travel with them!

  53. Wow! We have never heard of the extra toes. So, this was a very interesting post! Now, I am going to be looking at toes every time I meet a new kitty LOL! At any rate, you are special no matter what 🙂

  54. Oh my Cod! Look at all them beans!!! All the better to hold the toonas with!

  55. Best selfie in ages, we love your toesies!!

  56. How awesome you have extra toes!!! You sure look comfy in these pics!!! 🙂

  57. Very interesting! I learned something new. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  58. I need to meet more cats, I have met one with extra toes yet, but I really want to. I think they are super cute.

  59. We always knew you were special, Ernie!

  60. I love your extra toes, Ernie! They are adorable. 🙂 Polydactyl cats are very special. It’s little quirks like that that make each cat a unique work of art.

  61. Extra toes like that would have helped cats deal with the heaving and rocking of a ship.It was fun to go to Hemingway House in the Keys, the place of amazing sunsets! Thanks for the reminder =)

  62. Seriously loving the toes!!

  63. This is really interesting, thanks for sharing. I think you are very beautiful with your rare & special tosies!
    Love & biscuits,
    Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them

  64. My parents visited the Florida Keys last year and took a ton of photos of the cats there! They were very impressed by their extra toes!

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