Have you ever seen a Whippet with a stripy coat? If you have it’s highly possible you’ve seen a brindle Whippet!
Not only this but Whippets can also have flecks, marks and multiple colours in their coats. Some even have markings like tigers… and these brindle Whippets are the subject of this post.
In this post I’m going to explain what a brindle Whippet is and what it looks like. I’ll also show you examples… and I have lots of photos to choose from since I have a one myself!
Table of Contents
- What is Brindle?
- Are Brindle Whippets Rare?
- What Do Brindle Whippets Look Like?
- Brindle Whippet Photos
- Related Posts
What is Brindle?
The word brindle is an interesting one. It probably comes from a Middle English word, which itself probably originated from Old Norse / Old English.
In Middle English, the word “brended” meant burnt or branded. When applying this idea to animal coats, it’s easy to understand why the comparison arose between what we think of as brindle patterning and the dark marks left by scorching or burnishing.
A brindle Whippet then has distinctive dark markings on its coat, perhaps reminiscent of scorching, on a base colour that could be any of the standard colours we associate with the breed.
It’s worth mentioning that the brindle patterning is found on all kinds of animals: horses, cats and of course dogs.
I’m not an expert in genetics (not even a novice actually) but I understand “brindling” occurs as a result of a rare genetic mutation of a revessive black gene. For a Whippet to be brindle it has to inherit the recessive brindle genes from both its parents, who may or may not be brindle themselves.
However, even if a Whippet puppy inherits the brindle gene from its parents, the genes that influence the size or darkness of the brindle stripes are not currently identified. So even if a Whippet is brindle, you’ll never know what the stripes will look like until it’s been born.
If you want to know more about the genetics behind the brindle pattern, this excellent post explains it way better than I ever could!
What Does a Brindle Whippet Look Like?
People often associate brindle patterning as being like tiger stripes. Although I understand this comparison, since the patterning is tiger-like, the stripes on a tiger are often far more pronounced than the stripes on a brindle Whippet.
As detailed already, the brindle “stripes” are dark: black, blue (really a diluted black: see my article on blue Whippets) or dark brown.
The brindle patterns can also appear on any Whippet coat colour, which creates a multitude of coat possibilities:
- Blue brindle
- Brown brindle
- Cream brindle
- Dun brindle
- Fawn brindle
- Orange brindle
- Red brindle
- Silver brindle
- Tan brindle
Not only this, but brindles can have parti-coloured coats (two or more colours) and white trims too!
Brindle Whippet Photos
In my view, brindle Whippets are stunning… of course I would say this as a proud owner!
Below are a few photos of my Whippet Misty, that demonstrate the much-loved brindle stripes.
Are Brindle Whippets Rare?
Brindle Whippets are relatively rare, though not as rare as bully Whippets or blue Whippets… blue brindle Whippets then are even more uncommon. In the case of blue brindle though, the blue refers to the stripe rather than the base coat colour.
Even more unusual is a “reverse brindle” Whippet. Reverse brindle occurs when the striped pattern appears to be inverted. In these cases the coat has such thick, dark stripes that they appear to be the actual base coat colour.
Both cases are brindles… but a reverse brindle is likely more rare than a Whippet considered a traditional brindle.
A brindle Whippet has a base coat in a variety of colours, with dark stripes that look similar to a tiger’s markings.
The brindle stripes can only occur if both sets of parents pass on the recessive brindle gene to their puppy.
While a brindle Whippet may look very different to single coloured varieties, the Whippet temperament and athleticism remain the same.
Do you have a brindle Whippet or know more about the genetics of behind this patterning? I’d love to hear from you. Please leave a comment at the bottom of this page.
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