|Barked: Fri Dec 23, '11 12:08am PST |
|Purebred ACDs are not merles, so you would not get a double merle purebred ACD. The ACD coat pattern is a ticked pattern, which is a different gene from the merle gene. I'm not sure how someone who has bred ACDs for 12 years would not know that.
While some ACD bloodlines are prone to deafness, this is not the same genetic defect created by breeding two blue merle dogs. It is a genetic defect specific to ACDs and it is currently unknown whether it is related to a color gene or not.
The only way an ACD would have a merle pattern is if it is a cross with another breed, like Australian Shepherd or a Catahoula, that does carry the merle gene. Otherwise, an ACD should have a ticked coat, which can range for very fine ticking (called "speckle") to larger speckling that has a little more white mixed in (called "mottle").
The OP's dog does not appear to be a double merle to me. He looks like what Australian Shepherd breeders call "pattern white." That simply means the dog has inherited a combination of white-causing genes that resulted in a mostly white coat. In purebred ACDs, these white genes are very uncommon--beyond the "Bentley" mark of the head (like Chase has) and occasional white tail tip, ACDs should not have white patches. So an ACD that is dominantly white would have had to gotten those white genes from another breed and thus isn't purebred.
I noticed in the pic in the OP's profile that the dog has a Texas shape tag. If this dog is from Texas, or nearby, it is very possible it is a "Texas heeler" which is a nonstandard breed created by crossing ACDs with Aussie Shepherds (and sometimes other breeds). These dogs tend to have either lots of white or lots of black--both traits not found in purebred ACDs. Texas heelers are often called blue heelers, even when they have no blue ticking left in them, so this often confuses people into thinking they are the same breed as ACDs.
But at the end of the day, it's not whether your dog's purebred or not, but whether she's a good companion. That's really what matters.
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