Monday, August 11, 2014

Other Black and Tans in the Dog World

For me, when I think of dogs with black and tan markings (or black and rust, or black and rust markings are "fuego", flame, if you're in Spain), I think of Dobermans and Rottweilers.

Then of course there are Black and Tan Coonhounds, which people will frequently say a natural Doberman looks like, in a denigrating manner. I'm neither a fan nor a detractor of coonhounds, but coloring is pretty much the overlap there. The Brandlebracke or Austrian Hound, I feel, looks far more Doberman-like. But of course I never heard of them before beginning this blog post. They look quite lovely, in fact. Smaller than a Doberman, and Wikipedia tells me their name also references fire (Brandlebracke being a compound word [the German language loves that, by the by] of "Brand" for a harmful or out of control fire and "bracke" for a type of hunting dog)

Dachshunds also come in black and tan (and a color called "Wild Boar", isn't that fun? It must be brindle-y).

One that might surprise you? Labs. A black and tan (or a brindle!) labrador retriever may not compete in the conformation ring, but they do occur. It's a recessive gene, so it means both the sire and the dam must carry it. Guiding Eyes for the Blind occasionally have black and tans show up in their litters, and the pictures of the pups on that linked page are very interesting! The Retrieverman goes far more in depth in this blog post, with pictures (though those pictures seem to be mostly of a black and tan lab/golden mix, if we want to be picky).

It's funny, any time I read anything about canine genetics, ranging from vonWillebrand's disease to color considerations, I think back to fifth grade, where we learned how to make that square to figure out the four (or more) possible combinations of genes. With color inheritance it's easy, and with vWD. It's with DCM, where more than one gene is in action that those neat little boxes break down into question marks instead. It all came from Gregor Mendel, and what I know now might be referred to as the "Principles of Inheritance", but back then I was busy laughing with everybody else at how "genes" were like "jeans", which we were wearing. Oh, to be 10 again....


  1. Black and tan is always great, I specially like the Doberman Pinschers ist's great to watch them on a show :o)

  2. Manchester Terriers, English Toy Terriers and English Shepherds, but the ES have many other colour ranges.

  3. Black and tan is a striking combination. Our neighbor has a black and tan Chihuahua but I don't think there are Doberman genes since she weighs 8 pounds.

  4. Brussels Griffons also come in a black and tan.

    I'm reminded, looking at these pictures, of the beagle owner who told me that Silas needed some eyebrows.

  5. We always think of Rotties and Dobermans too
    Lily & Edward

  6. black and tan is pretty much one of my top favorite coat colors for dogs... :D My other favorite is grey sable... occurs most commonly in german shepherds. Though I guess a Keeshond also has that general coloring, except ALL keeshonds have it.

  7. What's wrong with coon hounds that anyone would say that in a negative way? Yes, I am fan of coon hounds and dobermans alike. While I know I could never own either (I'm too much of a pushover) - they are both beautiful in their own way. I can't help but stare when I see a Doberman. There was a Doberman in our training class and I am sure the owner thought I was slightly creepy. I didn't mean to be creepy - Olivia was just magnificent. I will never forget when we had a fun exercise where I had to "train" the other dogs in the class. When it came my time to have Olivia do a trick, it was the highlight of my day! There was just an extra bit of intelligence in those gorgeous eyes of hers! :)

    It's kind of funny how black and brown don't really sound like a good combo - but in dog markings - it is often just stunning!