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This has been cross posted in a few different forums in hopes of reaching a larger audience.

While I understand that the goal of breeding a dog is not for color, I am however interested in knowing of any one has done any test breeding's, or kept detailed records of their litters with "Seal" dogs.

The reason I ask is from a genetic perspective, I would like to determine what causes these faded black coats. I have been researching color genetics for a long time now, and have a pretty firm grasp on domesticated animal genetics in regards to color. Usually if we do not understand something, we test breed. However that's easier to do with Rats then Dogs. In cases like these, researchers primarily rely on records from breeders.

I asked a few people in the color genetics community what they thought caused "Seal" and here is what they said.

"This is along the lines of something I have been wondering for some time. Most likely these dogs are faded dominant black. Much like the faded blacks we see in horses. It is also possible that being homozygous or heterozygous for dominant black can affect the "shade" of the coat, however, I don't know if this is even possible."

This one was a response from Dr. Phillip Sponenberg.

"This one is confusing. The dominant black that occurs at Extension in several species (but not the dog!) is somewhat weak and leaky, and many time it will result in "off black" rather than "true black" animals. I don't know if that happens in dogs, but in my own dogs many of the black ones are "off black" and have shadows of other patterns. So, that could be all that this is. I'm not sure if it would be all that easy to figure out genetically, because that would depend on very accurate classification of entire litters at maturity. Sorry to be of so little help on this one…"

Has anyone submitted their Seal and Black dogs to UC Davis, VetGen, or AnimalGenetics for Extension, Agouti, and K-Locus testing?
 
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