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B-category: Brown colour

originally written by: Marika Mäntylä
translated: Bettina Salmelin

black & white brown
grey & beige black & tan
grey & white brown & white
spotting colours

The darkness of the colour varies from light to very dark.

All newfoundlands have two B alleles. One from the father, the other from the mother.


BB= black dog that doesn't have the brown allele

Bb= black dog that has the brown allele

bb= brown dog


If you cross two brown dogs together, all the puppies are brown.

x b b
b bb bb
b bb bb


If one parent is black (BB) and the other brown, all the puppies are black, but carry the brown colour (Bb)

x b b
B Bb Bb
B Bb Bb

If two puppies from above (Bb) would be crossed together, 25% of the litter would be black (BB), 50% would be black but would carry the brown gene (Bb) and 25% would be brown (bb).

x B b
b Bb bb


If you were to cross a black (BB) and a black that carries the brown allele (Bb), the result would be as follows:

x B b

All the puppies would appear black, but half of them would carry the brown gene.


In theory and mathematically, the litters would be as above, following certain principles. In reality it is all but that. If a breeder would cross two blacks that carry the brown gene together. (S)he would x-ray the bitch right before them being born, they see 8 puppies. Mathematically 25% would be brown (2 pups), but in reality they all might turn out to be black, or, brown. Mendel's principles do work, but only when the numbers are very big.

The darkness of the brown colour varies from light brown to very dark brown.

The B alleles influence, not only the coat, but also the colour of the nose and the mouth, many brown newfoundlands tend to have very light eyes when compared to those of the black's. The breed standard allows browns to have lighter eyes. as a general rule, a brown should have the same colour eyes as the coat. The darker the better. Also Bb dogs (phenotypically black dogs) often have lighter eyes, which might lead to breeders avoiding brown lines.


(c) Salmelin