Charlie The Dachshund Visited Our Vacaville Clinic

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Charlie, seen here at our Vacaville clinic, is a Dachshund who reflects genetics for Piebald coloring and associated genetics for Dapple or Merle coloring AND he has two blue eyes. Doxies (Dachshunds) come in smooth coat, long silky coat, wire coat and a wide variety of colors. The common colors include black/tan, red, shaded color with black back hairs and the color known as “piebald.” This is a pattern with large white areas either with or without color ticking in the interior of the white area. Charlie, therefore is a red Piebald without ticking (so he’s not Merle or Dappled)This once uncommon color is now popular and is the result of intentional breeding for “Piebald” coat color. There is a lot more to the story of Piebald (and Merle and Dapple). We have to watch out for excessively white Piebald or Dapple with white face and blue eye coloring as this is a genetic anomaly called ‘Double Merle’ or ‘Lethal White’ and comes with problems including deafness and blindness. This condition also includes a gene mutation which makes the dogs intolerant of high doses of Ivermectin or Trifexis. Breeding a Dapple (or Piebald) with a non-Dapple is a typical and safe way to produce Dapple pups. Breeding two Dapple or Piebald dogs is risky as 25% of their pups will be affected. Breeding two Double Merles will always result in disaster. Charlie is lucky, though. He is completely healthy and has good hearing and there’s no reason to suspect he will have drug sensitivities – Geoffrey Antipa

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