Dalmatians are Black OR Liver, but Not Both on the Same Dog

Dalmatians are black OR liver, but not both on the same dog – and from this point on, we’re walking into the tall weeds and rely on Dal owners to bail us out. If we have it right, black (identified as “B”) is the dominant color in Dalmatians, while liver (we’ll call it “b”) is the recessive color. Black-spotted Dals who are pure for black don’t carry the liver recessive gene and can only produce more black-spotted Dalmatians. Black Dals, however, CAN be “Bb” – liver-factored, which means that although the dog is black, it can produce livers if bred to another Dal with a liver gene. Liver Dalmatians are always “bb” and don’t carry black, as liver is the recessive color. Liver to liver will only produce more livers, but a “bb” liver to a “Bb” – liver-factored black may produce both colors. We’re going to lie down, now.

2 thoughts on “Dalmatians are Black OR Liver, but Not Both on the Same Dog”

  1. So happy that I only have to worry about one color with my American Eskimo Dogs. However as colors go, just having two to keep track of is much better than some of the other breeds with more colors and combinations of colors. It would give me a headache trying to figure out who to breed to whom color-wise.

    • Isn’t that the truth, DR? And even when we THINK we have it figured out, nature can surprise us. Probably the most exquisite white Puli (our breed) we ever saw was born of black parents, both out of black lines. When the dog was first born, the breeder thought her dog had whelped a sock, so taken aback was she by its color. She knew both lines of the puppy very well, and flummoxed by a white puppy coming out of nowhere made her do some investigating in the stud book. She came across the name of a dog that lived a long time ago, and because she understood Hungarian, she was able to interpret the dog’s name: Hófehér means “Snow White.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *