CC Image courtesy of Sadie Hart on Flickr
What is Brindle?
Brindle is a way of describing a unique color marking on animals. Sometimes called “tiger stripes”, “trundle”, or tri-color; brindle is described as orange or tanned colored streaks, with black markings on top.
Brindle can occur with dogs, cats, guinea pigs, and horses.
What are Brindle Labs?
Labrador Retrievers with with brownish, gold, or tan coloring, typically found on their muzzle, chest, and legs, are referred to as having brindle patterns.
Long haired dogs with brindle, like Labradors, are typically uncommon, and is much more common in short haired breeds such as Boxers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers, Welsh Corgis, Boston Terriers, Dachshunds, and Mixed breeds.
Is my Labrador Not Pure Bred if he/she is Brindle?
Pure bred Labradors can have brindle coloring, although it’s considered as a mismark by breed standards. Otherwise your dog will not show any other differences in traits or personality.
Keep in mind your dog may be a breed mix, which can also contribute to being a brindle carrier.
What are the Breed Standard colors for Labradors?
Labrador breed color standards (as stated by the AKC and CKC) are strictly Yellow, Brown, and Black - meaning Brindle dogs do not qualify as a show dog.
What Causes Brindle?
Your dogs color patterns is determined by genetics, and research has found that brindle is caused by a recessive trait originated from the K-locus gene.
Carriers of this trait are more prone to having brindle, and its most commonly found in short haired breeds. Currently, there is no way to test if your dog is a carrier of the brindle gene, other than observing their coat pattern and that of their offspring.
Are Brindle Dogs Any Different?
Brindle is a color pattern, that’s it. It makes absolutely zero difference in the dog’s personality or behavior.
Are Brindle Dogs Rare and Worth More Money?
Brindle may be a favorable color for some owners, so you may see breeders or ads marketing their brindle dogs as “rare” and attempt to sell them for increased cost.
Labradors with brindle patterns are uncommon, but it certainly doesn’t mean they should cost more. They are the exact same breed with minor color differences.
If you are considering a show dog, then be aware that brindle is considered a mismark and will disqualify you from showing. But otherwise they are just regular labradors retrievers.