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Kitten with two faces born in New York state barn

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Published in Cats & Dogs News

(UPI) A New York state family welcomed an unusual arrival when their barn cat give birth to a kitten with two faces on a single head.

Kyla King, whose family lives on a farm east of Albany, said the 1-year-old barn cat gave birth to a litter of six kittens Wednesday, and she soon realized the runt of the litter had two mouths, two noses and four eyes.

The Kings dubbed the kitten Biscuits and Gravy, or Biscuit for short.

The new arrival's rare condition is believed to be caused by a birth defect known as diprosopus, or craniofacial duplication. Felines with the condition are commonly known as Janus cats, after the ancient Roman god often depicted with two faces.

 

King said Biscuit was rejected by the mother cat, so she has been hand-rearing and feeding the kitten until a full veterinary exam can be conducted to determine whether Biscuit is healthy enough to survive.

Janus cats often don't live for more than a few days, but have been known to survive for years if their internal organs aren't dramatically altered by the condition. A Massachusetts cat named Frank and Louie became a Guinness World Record holder for Janus cats when he lived to be 15 years old.

Copyright 2020 by United Press International