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DEFINITIONS - Colour dilution

Dilute colours are caused by a recessive gene that dilutes colour and makes watered down, weaker versions of the base colours. The dilution gene affects not only coat colour. It also affects the pigment colour of eyes, eyerims, nose, lips and pads. This results in a puppy that is a dilute colour right from birth and one that also has lighter self-coloured pigment and eyes.

The dilution gene is different than the silvering gene that produces Silver dogs. The dilution gene is the same as what is seen in the Weimaraner (Weimaraner grey being dilute chocolate and Weimaraner blue being dilute black). The dilution gene can vary in degree, making some dogs lighter than others. The coat colour can change or soften further as the dog matures.

See the colour inheritance pages for information on how these dilutions occur and see Gallery 11 for photos.


In other breeds, these dilute colours are called Cafe-au-Lait, Blue, Lilac, Lavender, Mouse, Pearl, Grey, and Isabella.

Dilute back Havanese are generally called "Blue". Dilute chocolate Havanese are often referred to as such or may be called "Cafe-au-lait" in reference to their milky coffee colour, "White Chocolate" like the confectionary, or "Chocolate creams".


Photo examples of dilute colours can be found in Gallery11.

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Dilute black = Blue DILUTE BLACK: This colour is generally known as blue. Some puppies are born a dusty black colour but most are silvery blue or ash grey from birth. Those born dark may change colour quite rapidly. The eyes are light brown, dusty amber, or may be grey/blue. The pigment is self-coloured blue/grey.
See photos in Gallery 11.

Dilute chocolate DILUTE CHOCOLATE: The dilute chocolate Havanese is sometimes called Cafe-Au-Lait in reference to the colour, but there is no official designation. Puppies are born a milky coffee colour, pale brown or silvery bronze. The eyes are light brown or amber. The pigment is self coloured from beige to light rosy brown. See photos in Gallery 11.

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