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Roan Coat Color Progression

There is often a misunderstanding between the roan coat color and a coat with heavy ticking. The roan and/or ticked color is described in many breeds of gundogs, the English Springer Spaniel being one of them. Unlike true roan horses and cattle, (which are roan only in pigmented regions of their coat) roan in dogs manifests itself only in un-pigmented areas. Dogs with roaning or ticking are born with clear, (open) white markings which begin to fill in with flecking shortly after birth and continue to darken with age. Most breed standards use the terms "ticked" when referring to clearly defined flecks on a white background and "roan" when referring to flecks so closely spaced that the mixture appears even. If you look closely, a roan dog has base coat colored hair interspersed evenly throughout the white. A ticked or heavily ticked dog has small spots. Some roan dogs also have ticking. Roan is a dominant trait; therefore you can follow the roan coat color back through the pedigree of a dog.

Roan does not spontaneously appear within a litter without a roan parent

English Springer Spaniels only come in three acceptable color combinations. These color combinations are black or liver with white, black or liver roan, or tricolored (black or liver and white with tan markings which are usually found above the eyes, on the cheeks, inside the ears, and under the tail). The white portions of the coat may also have flecks of colored hairs throughout. Unethical breeders are known to market "rare colors" such as lemon, sable, and orange. According to the American Kennel Club, these colors are considered off-colors and are not to be placed in a show. Reputable breeders do not breed for these colors. Show lines tend to have a darker blanket coat, while the field lines typically have more white coats. Show lines tend to have a longer coat than field dogs, and their ears tend to be longer.
Below are progressive pictures of some of our roan puppies:

Willoughby's Mercy Me RN CGCA

at 7 months and 11 months

King Henry Of Willoughby BN RN CGCA

at one year, 16 months and 2 1/2 years

Willoughby's Son Of A Gun -

Pictured at 1-4 weeks old

5-8 weeks old

9 weeks - 14 weeks and as an adult



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