Black lab turning chocolate?

Discussion in 'Labrador breeding & genetics' started by DB, Feb 13, 2018.

  1. DB

    DB Registered Users

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    When we picked up our puppy he was jet black.
    Now at 4 months, his paws and face are still very black, but the rest of his body has turned chocolate. Is this just a puppy phase and will his fur turn back to black? I've searched online and have read about mismarks, but haven't seen this combination, so I'm not sure if that is what this is. Any info would be appreciated.
     
  2. snowbunny

    snowbunny Registered Users

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    A black Labrador cannot turn chocolate - chocolate and black require different genes (read more here: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/labrador-colour/). Some black dogs have a different "hue" to them, and shedding can also make a difference to how your dog's coat appears, although at four months, he's probably a bit young to be losing his puppy coat. Where in the world are you? I ask as exposure to the sun can bleach dogs' coats so that they go brown in patches.
     
  3. Karen

    Karen Registered Users

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    Hi and welcome! What colour were his parents and siblings?
     
  4. Snowshoe

    Snowshoe Registered Users

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    Absolutely can happen, happened to my black Lab puppy Jet, but not till she was nearly one year old. As well as turning brownish, mostly very visible brown highlights under her black coat, she also developed a Mane of hair, brown, from her neck to her tail. It was longest, several inches long, at her neck and shoulders.

    I called the breeder who said it is not common and will shed out and happens with shedding from puppy to adult coat. Especially the mane part. My Jet girliepup was older, call your breeder.

    All through adulthood shed might look brown before it loosens and starts to fall out. Jet's dam was chocolate, sire black. All her life Jet showed brown, very dark brown, highlights in her coat and in bright sunlight was infrequently taken for chocolate.
     
  5. DB

    DB Registered Users

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    Hi, thank you for the replies.

    We are in New England. There haven't been many bright sunny days this winter so I don't think it is from the sun. How much do they need to be outside to have that happen?

    His mother is a black and his father is yellow. I mentioned it to the breeder who said there were no chocolates in his last 4 generations.

    He also has quite a bit of wavy fur on his back that wasn't there when we first got him. Our last lab also had a bit of wavy fur so I am thinking that is unrelated?

    I am going to try to figure out how to add a picture and post that next.
     
  6. DB

    DB Registered Users

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    Hi Snowshoe,
    Thanks for sharing your story. It must have been a shock to see him changing colors. Especially since his name was Jet.
    I guess we will just have to wait and see if he stays brown or goes back to black when his adult fur comes in.

    I haven't been able to figure out yet how to add a picture. Going to do a little more research now...
     
  7. snowbunny

    snowbunny Registered Users

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    The breeder of my older two kept two black boys. They went brownish when they were shedding their first coat - quite dramatically so. There is definitely no chocolate in their genes - the parents are BBEe (sire - black with hidden yellow genes) and BBee (dam - yellow with hidden black genes). The two boys darkened again as they got older, but still sometimes get a brown tinge, especially during coat casting. My black girl from that litter has brownish hints around her muzzle. It still doesn't mean there's any chocolate in her genes - there absolutely isn't :)
     
  8. kateincornwall

    kateincornwall Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Sam also had absolutely no chocolate in his genes either , but when he was moulting ( i.e. most of the year ! ) the dead hair underneath was often a brownish colour , but brushed out easily enough .
     
  9. Snowshoe

    Snowshoe Registered Users

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    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jet_(lignite)

    Jet is used for making jewellery. My Grandmother had a Jet necklace. Ironically, Jet is not always black but can be a very dark brown, and it is a glossy stone. Thus my girl's name suited her perfectly. She had a very, very glossy, shiny coat that many people remarked on. :) Her registered name was "kennel" Jetstone Jewel. :)
     

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