Brindle dogs: patterns and brindle expression.

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Brindle is the term used for the "tiger stripe" coat pattern found on dogs.  Boxers or Greyhounds often come to mind when this type of coat is mentioned, but many breeds can have these distinctive markings.

 Patterns of the dog.

Dogs born with this pattern in their coat carry a particular recessive gene.  Typically, these markings feature shades of red as the base color, with black stripes across the top.  However, the extent of brindle that appears on the coat and the patterns can vary widely, depending on what other genes are present. For more information on the subject, here - even.

For example, some brindle dogs have silver, liver, brown or blue stripes or tips.  The red base can go from a light cream to a deep red.  Brindle markings can only be on one part of their body, and sometimes the pattern can be speckled.

When the stripes are broken into shorter lengths or stitches, this is called brindle merle, and it can be a very subtle distinction.  When lighter stripes appear on a darker base coat, this is called "reverse brindle".  Brindle markings do not affect a dog's personality.  So, if you are drawn to a dog with this coat pattern, it is important to consider whether the typical breed traits will suit your family and lifestyle.

 Brindle Expression

The gene that determines the color of the brindle is dominant in boxers, while the fawn gene is recessive.  This means that if a puppy has brindle genes, they will show up in their fur.  Fawn boxers can only have fawn colored puppies, as they must have two recessive fawn genes in order to display the fawn color.

Brindle boxers will only have brindle patterned puppies if they have two brindle genes. Brindle boxers can have brindle or fawn puppies if they have both a dominant brindle gene and a recessive fawn gene, as long as they breed with a boxer who also has a dominant sourdough gene and a gene  recessive of the fawn or breed with a boxer with two fawn genes.

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