Black German Shepherd with Bleed Through Color? - Page 1

Pedigree Database


by TawnBawn on 10 April 2018 - 15:04

I have just noticed the my German Shepherd Female Luna Vom Blumen Der Rose( She is on this site) has brown coming through on her front and back legs. ( Not sure how to upload pics on here yet.... She has had Brown in between her toes for quite a while but never any by her vent. She is registered as a Solid Black. What genetic causes this change? How do I find out if she is a melanistic bi-color or black with bleed through?Whats the difference? I plan on breeding her when shes older (2 years and OFA'd and hopefully her BH) Would like breed her to a dark sable. What would be the outcomes be of that breeding? Her Sire is Black with some brown bleed through like her and her Dam is a sable. Her grandmother is a Bi-color on her dam's side. Any advice is helpful :) I posted the photos of her legs on her page in her galleries.


by Sunsilver on 10 April 2018 - 15:04

She looks pure black to me. When a black dog is shedding, the shed undercoat will appear brownish rather than black. Maybe this is what's happening with your girl.

A bicolor dog will have brown around its vent.

Black is recessive, so the dam must carry the gene for black, and indeed, there are quite a few black dogs in her pedigree.

by dpn on 10 April 2018 - 19:04

by yhecht on 10 April 2018 - 20:04

I have owned solid black dogs for over 60 years, and this is the first time that I have run into this. Rebel's sire and dam are solid black, though in looking at the dams photo more closely now. I can see the brown on her front legs. All 12 pups in the litter were black, though I do not know if any of the others have the same problem

Here is his pedigree plus some early pictures.

He legs have 'Dirty" brown hairs on them similiar to this dog.  Sorry, I live alone and he would not hold still long enough for me to get a good picture of them. I started noticing the brown when he was about 1 year old.


An image


by Hundmutter on 10 April 2018 - 21:04

It seems increasingly common, I have seen this in the flesh and there have been discussions on here a couple of times. Since dpn has linked us Daryl Ehret's chart, hopefully Daryl will get wind of this and come back here; if he does, how do you, Daryl, explain this phenomenon of the ostensibly all-black dogs having brown markings on their legs, please ? Personally I don't get how this fits the genetic picture, or what we know about dogs being either: black with varying amounts of tan, (including none ?) / OR sable. Yet it undoubtedly happens. And these marks do not look anything like the blocks of tan (or Gold or Red, whichever you prefer to call them) which present themselves on 'normal' bi-colour or saddle-marked dogs.


by susie on 11 April 2018 - 18:04

I may sound dumb, but for me an "all black" dog is "all" black, no markings at all...

I personally never cared that much about color genetics cause color neither influences working ability nor structure - but although clueless I'd call a dog of this kind a black/tan - in this case ( although not even officially mentioned in the SV standard ) a " bi color" .


by Hundmutter on 11 April 2018 - 19:04

Susie, all the cases of this I have seen have been in dogs where they definitely started out 'all-black', but then in young adulthood started to get this brown ('flecks', almost) mainly on lower limbs; often long after a normal black & gold puppy would have come thorough the dark puppy stage and had its tan bits extend into solid parts of legs (and face, belly etc) so you could see what pattern it will end up. It really is quite odd. I cannot vouch for all the ancestry of every dog I have seen with this marking (phenotypically they have all looked okay); but posters here have related stories where they are absolutely sure of pedigree, so it does not look like obvious cross-breeding. Does not seem related to moulting periods to me, nor do the dogs automatically have other 'non-black' manifestations such as the white spot on chest or toes some get (along with some black & gold dogs).


by Lunastar on 12 April 2018 - 02:04

yhecht, that is a photo of my girl Sasha's tan bleeding through found here:

Sasha's father is a solid black while her mother is a sable. I met them both when we went to pick a puppy for my future service dog. In all the black bleed through GSDs pedigrees, I have noticed that one parent is usually sable the other black while there are also usually a few bi-colors for grandparents on one or both sides. Maybe the bleed through dogs are actually bi-color sables genetically?


by Hundmutter on 12 April 2018 - 06:04

There is no such thing as a "Bi-color Sable", Luna. Dogs are genetically bi-colour / B&G, or genetically Sable. They cannot be both. We have just persuaded the UK Kennel Club to drop "Black & Tan & Sable" from its accepted colours for the breed. This was done on the basis of the genetics.

It strikes me as most likely that this 'bleed through' has somehow arisen from an increase in Sable to Sable matings, with the popular concentration on very dark offspring ('black sables').


Contact information  Disclaimer  Privacy Statement  Copyright Information  Terms of Service  Cookie policy  ↑ Back to top