Merle Pigment in dogs.

Merle Pigment in dogs.

There is a debate in the dog breeding community regarding the safety and health of merle-colored dogs. Merle is a unique pattern of pigment distribution that results in a marbled, mottled coat that can occur in a variety of colors. While there is no evidence to suggest that the merle pattern itself is unhealthy or harmful to dogs, the breeding practices used to produce merle-colored dogs can sometimes lead to health problems.

Merle is a dominant trait, which means that a merle dog only needs to inherit one copy of the merle gene from one parent to express the pattern. However, when two merle dogs are bred together, there is a risk of producing "double merles," which are dogs that inherit two copies of the merle gene. Double merles are often born with hearing and vision problems, and may also have a higher risk of other health issues.

To avoid these problems, responsible breeders typically only mate merle dogs with non-merle dogs, and will only breed merle dogs together if they have been carefully tested and evaluated to ensure that they are not carrying any other problematic genetic mutations. It is important to do your research and find a reputable breeder with good breeding practices and a focus on the health and wellbeing of their dogs.

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