It can be a little disconcerting to see your Golden Lab develop black hairs as it ages because you probably didn’t even know such a thing was possible. However, it’s more common than you think. So let’s answer the question you probably have; why does my dog have black hairs?
Dogs have black hairs due to genetics. Black hair follicular dysplasia may also cause dogs to have black hairs. This is an inherited skin condition in canines that’s rare, and it manifests as hair loss in dogs with black coats or black and white-colored dogs as black-haired patches.
Before you get too disconcerted, don’t worry – we’ve got you covered. Our doggy-centric feature will inform you of all you need to know about black hair follicular dysplasia and how the condition is treated.
Is It Normal For Dogs To Have Black Hairs
It’s normal for dogs to have black hairs. A few black hairs in an all-light coat isn’t something you should get too stressed about.
Sometimes genetics can cause white hair in children because their parents or grandparents started graying early on. Similarly, maybe your canine had a dark-haired ancestor, and that’s what caused your pup to develop a dark hair or two.
However, if you notice the black hairs on your furbaby’s body growing at a fast speed, you may want to get it checked out by the vet to ensure there’s no underlying reason behind it.
What Is Black Hair Follicular Dysplasia
Black Hair Follicular Dysplasia is a rare genetic disorder that affects mixed-breed and purebred dogs. The condition occurs in black and white and black colored dogs and can present its symptoms early as one month after birth. Symptoms of black hair follicular dysplasia include:
● Hair loss in black colored areas
● Dry and itchy skin
● Skin infections
● Scaling skin, although mildly
● Dull hair quality in black patches
● Abnormal hair growth in your dog
● Short hair
The cause of black hair follicular dysplasia is the inheritance of an autosomal (a gene located in the non-sex or numbered chromosomes) recessive trait. The condition is more common in breeds such as:
● Border Collies
● Basset Hounds
● Jack Russel Terriers
● American Cocker Spaniels
How Is Black Hair Follicular Dysplasia Treated
Black Hair Follicular Dysplasia doesn’t have any treatment yet, and the changes canines experience because of this condition can remain permanent. However, the good news is that sometimes treatment isn’t even necessary.
Although, veterinarians may prescribe treatments to alleviate some of the symptoms related to the condition. For instance, your vet may prescribe medicated shampoos or leave-in conditioners for your pet’s itchy and scaling skin.
Your canine may also be given vitamin A and E supplements to promote skin and coat health. In case of skin infections, vets may prescribe oral antibiotics or topical treatments to help clear the skin.
Why Is My Dogs White Hair Turning Black
Sometimes the abnormal growth of black-haired patches in black and white dogs may make it appear as if its white hair is turning black.
This type of accelerated growth is generally seen in follicular dysplasia (a genetic condition that typically presents with alopecia), known as black hair follicular dysplasia.
Why Does My Yellow Lab Have Black Hairs
Yellow Labs tend to get a black hair or two in their fur from time to time for no particular reason. However, if you’ve noticed a patch of black or dark-colored hair on your Labrador, there could be a few reasons behind this.
A fungal infection can sometimes cause your canine’s skin or hair to turn dark (a reddish hue), and that may give the appearance of black hair.
If your pet is also displaying symptoms such as skin redness, itching, or flaky skin, chances are your furball has contracted a fungal infection and needs prompt medical attention from the vet.
While Labradors aren’t prone to developing conditions like black hair follicular dysplasia, they can be mismarked (have color oddities) that appear as black or tan markings.
Why Does My Golden Retriever Have Random Black Hairs
Did you know almost all Golden Retrievers are black dogs but with a particular genotype (collection of genes) that stops the growth of black hair on their fur?
Unfortunately, genetics is a tricky business at times. Sometimes, certain Golden Retrievers are born with a somatic mutation (a DNA sequence change that can’t be passed on to descendants) that causes the growth of black hair.
This mutation can present itself as random black hairs in the fur or big black patches on different parts of the canine’s body.
Why Is My Dog’s Hair Changing Color
It’s not uncommon for dogs’ coats to change color over time. At times, puppies born a specific color at birth will grow up to be a different color altogether.
A change in coat or hair color can result from various causes, such as nutrition, medications, sunlight exposure, or even skin disease. Nonetheless, if your pet’s changing coat color is accompanied by symptoms like flaky or scaling skin, itchiness, or hair loss, then it’s best to take your fur baby to the vet for a confirmed diagnosis.
Things To Consider
There you have it, folks. We’ve discussed various reasons for your dog’s coat or fur changing color. But, if you thought we’re done imparting our canine knowledge – you’re in for a surprise. Here are some factors you need to look out for if you notice your furbaby’s fur acting a bit strange.
Frequency of different colored hair
If your furry best friend even has a total of ten black hairs all over its body – it’s not something you should stress about. That’s because the ratio of ten black or dark hairs compared to the rest of the hair follicles on your pet’s body doesn’t equal a significant change.
However, if you notice the number of dark hairs multiplying swiftly and that too in one concentrated area – it’s best not to waste time and have your canine looked over by the vet.
Canine follicular dysplasia may include painful secondary symptoms like flaky skin, or skin infections, which is why preempting the symptoms is a good idea.
Not All Dogs Are Prone To Developing Black Hair Follicular Dysplasia
Only a handful of canine breeds are prone to black hair follicular dysplasia, such as Basset Hounds, Papillons, etc. That means pet parents with furbabies of such breeds should keep a keen eye on their furbaby’s dark hair growth.
However, dog owners whose pets don’t belong to breeds prone to black hair follicular dysplasia don’t have to stress about this condition.
They should, however, not overlook the situation if their pet is itching itself more than usual, has red, flaky skin, or a greasy coat because these signs could point to a fungal infection.
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