Characteristics of albino dogs

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Albino dogs have the same conditions as other albino animals. This makes the perspective on albinism no different when we consider dogs. And many times this perspective generates controversy, especially when there is not enough information on the subject..

Some people argue that albinism is not a desirable trait in dogs because it has many associated biological deficiencies. This is certainly the prevailing view in many of the dog breed standards. Other people argue that albino dogs can live well if they are cared for and therefore there would be no problem in allowing them to breed. However, and without ignoring that albino dogs deserve love and the necessary care, it must be taken into account that these dogs are more prone to health problems that can limit their quality of life and even cause very serious difficulties in some cases..

Therefore, if you have an albino dog or are thinking of adopting one, it is important that you learn about AnimalWised the characteristics of albino dogs and how the diagnosis of albinism is made. In this way you will have a good starting point to understand the care that an albino dog requires..

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Characteristics of albino dogs

Although the characteristics of dogs with albinism may be similar to those of other albino animals, This condition presents certain peculiarities in man's best friend. To begin with, the existence of dogs with complete albinism has not yet been described. In other words, all the albinisms described in the technical and scientific literature on dogs are partial albinisms..

Even dogs in which melanin appears to be completely absent have some pigment, only in some cases it is so diluted that they look like dogs with complete albinism. Partial albinism, on the other hand, means that there is some amount of pigment and, therefore, it can be confused with other conditions. Perhaps that is why white dogs are often confused with albino dogs, beyond the cause of hair color.

However, the main characteristics of an albino dog are the following:

  • Pink or very lightly pigmented skin. The skin of normal dogs is noticeably pigmented, even if the coat is white, which you can see by separating the coat from the back. In contrast, the skin of albino dogs is very light and is usually pink. Some albino dogs may have freckles and moles, but the general pigmentation is almost nonexistent..
  • Pink nose. Albino dogs have pink or very pale noses due to poor skin pigmentation. However, not all pink nosed dogs are albinos. A dog with a rubbed nose but with pigmentation on the skin, lips, eyelids and eyes is not an albino.
  • Depigmented lips and eyelids. The lips and eyelids are other indicators of albinism. When they are pink, there is a possibility that the dog is albino. However, as with the nose, not all pink-lipped and pink-lipped dogs are albinos..
  • Very light eyes. Albino dogs usually have blue, gray or green eyes, all very pale. Occasionally they have light brown eyes. However, not all light-eyed dogs are albinos. Pink eyes are common in other albino animals, but rare in dogs.

Unfortunately, the above characteristics can be confusing and lead to misdiagnoses. Many dogs have one or more of these characteristics without being albinos, and some albino dogs can pass for normal dogs. Therefore, the diagnosis of albinism it has to be done by a qualified veterinarian.

Diagnosis of the albino dog

Although much research has been done on the canine genome and inherited diseases of dogs, little is known about albinism. It is believed that the genes involved may be at the C and P loci (loci are the positions that genes occupy on chromosomes), as is the case in other mammals. However, there is still no 100% conclusive information.

Unfortunately, the absolutely reliable diagnosis of albinism in dogs could only be made through genetic analysis, but since the appropriate genetic markers are not available, it is only done on the basis of visible characteristics.

Therefore, it is necessary that the person in charge of making the diagnosis of albinism is a experienced professional in the subject. Ideally, it should be done by a veterinarian with some specialization in genetics, but it could also be done by the dog's own breeder if they have sufficient knowledge on the subject and a good record of the pedigree of their dogs..

So don't blindly trust anyone who tells you that a dog is albino, Albino dogs are not always reliably diagnosed. It is not enough that the dog is white or has a pink nose to say that it is albino.

If you have questions about your dog or a dog that you want to acquire, please seek advice from your trusted veterinarian, because albino dogs are prone to certain diseases and need special care.

Do not hesitate to visit:

  • Caring for an albino dog
  • 10 things you didn't know about dogs
  • Tricks to prevent my dog ​​from smelling bad

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