Hi, my dog is eight weeks, and she is black, white and brown. I would like her to remain this way, do you think she is going to change?
-------------------------------------------- Hi, Janice Here from Miracle Shih Tzu --------------------------------------------
What a cute puppy!
It is hard to know whether she will change without knowing anything about her parents or her grandparents' appearance. Color changes are all in the genes.
I typically do not add pictures to a visitor's posts, but I thought you might like to see some changes in one of our pet dogs as a way to illustrate what I will say.
The last two pictures on this page are of my daughter's dog Cooper. When he was born, he was a dark black and white with a small amount of brown in his hair. We would call it a tri-color and he would be listed according to the American Kennel Club (AKC) as a Black, Gold & White or Code 310.
You can see from his puppy picture that he looks like his coat contains quite a bit of black and white.
I just snapped a picture of him today at age 6, and much of the black has faded, and you can see more of the gold or what used to look like as brown.
We could have predicted what he might end up looking like by looking at his parents. His mother was similar in color to Cooper when she was a puppy, but by the time she was an adult, much of the color had changed or faded.
Cooper's father as a puppy was gold and white, and now as an old man, he is mostly all white with some gold.
There are only two ways to know for sure what color(s) a puppy will be as an adult.
First, you can do genetic testing by sending in a DNA sample to be analyzed for color. It is expensive and what you receive is the genetic codes for colors that are in his DNA. Test such as these may or may not prove anything.
These tests are more useful to breeders who want to know what colors may be passed down to the next generation.
Second, and I believe the best method of determining what colors a dog will eventually possess is to look at the parents and grandparents.
Unfortunately, this is usually not possible. The breeder may have knowledge of the mother, but not the entire family. Sometimes you do get lucky and see parents and grandparents, but that is rare.
You can not always go by the pedigree either as the colors written on the pedigree are usually those that are assigned when the puppy is registered. AND, as we all know, the colors change.
As I mentioned earlier, I added two pictures of our dogs. Cooper is the only dog that we currently have the most closely resembles Isabelle's puppy. His color has gradually faded over time but still, retains some of the original colors.
Only time will tell whether Isabella's dog will change, but if she is like most Shih Tzu dogs, she will show some changes over time.
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