When do dogs go gray?

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I'm all ears!
Barked: Sun Jun 1, '08 1:23pm PST 
That's a very broad question with a different answer for every dog, so I'm expecting lots of different responses. The thing is that last June (2007) I adopted Cal. The shelter said he was two years old. He'd been found as a very skinny stray so no one knew his age for sure. One vet said he was 6 months. Another said he was a year. In the last year he hasn't gotten bigger, so I am guessing he was at least a year last June when we got him, making him at least two years now. He's naturally leggy with giant feet, so most people assume he's a pup, even today.

Well now he is starting to go gray under his chin. He has probably thirty little gray hairs under his bottom lip that weren't there before. I am wondering if this might offer a clue as to his real age...meaning he's older than anyone had thought.

What is everyone else's experience with dogs going gray? Cal's my first dog, so I'm totally clueless in this area.

Dog About- Rosedale

Barked: Sun Jun 1, '08 2:36pm PST 
Every dog is different in my experience. Some never gray and some go gray as early as two years. Being that some colours of dogs actually change from puppy to adulthood (Wheatens, Silver poodles etc) it is possible that the white is a normal coat colour change as opposed to "aging".

I'm sticking my- tongue out at- you!
Barked: Sun Jun 1, '08 3:10pm PST 
I have known some dogs that started to go gray as young as a few months. That is probably due to the coat changing color, and not aging, but I'm not 100% sure. Hershey has had a little "milk mustache" her entire life, but I have started to notice it "spread" as she gets older. She just turned 7, so I'm not shocked. I'm not thrilled by it, but not shocked.

Fun On The- Run Kennel- Racing

'10 Junior- Iditarod, 6th- place!
Barked: Sun Jun 1, '08 3:11pm PST 
IMO every dog is different, too. I know an 8 year old lab who is really gray, and I know a 3 year old chihuahua who is already going gray. It might vary by breed too, but I am not sure.

They probably thought he was two because of the shape of his teeth, too. Their teeth get different as they age, so if they thought he was just 6 months he could have had brand new teeth just coming in after losing his bay teeth.
Trixie Bean!

none so blind as- those that will- not see
Barked: Sun Jun 1, '08 3:14pm PST 
Trix got a few grey hairs when she was 3 or 4 years old, but nothing really noticeable. Even now, at 7 (nearly 8), she doesn't have that much grey shrug

If in doubt - Pee on it!!!
Barked: Sun Jun 1, '08 3:24pm PST 
When we got Lucky the shelters said he was 7 -8 yrs. He had a sprinkling of gray and his teeth were a worn. 8 years later the vet thinks the shelter was wrong on his age, because he can not believe Lucky is 15 - 16. He thinks maybe 12 - 13. But said if he did had to guess without any history he would say 9. So, just to show how much they can be off when they guess.

Jazzy is three and is getting a mustache.
Cocobear- Gone Too- Soon

Proud member of- Legos Anonymous
Barked: Sun Jun 1, '08 3:33pm PST 
I'm glad you started this thread!!
Everyone thinks I'm old because I've got so much gray, but a vet and a tech guessed I was 2 last year by checking my teeth. They didn't know what each other had guessed, and I sure don't act very old.
My family all has either white or gray faces- mama doesn't remember when she actually noticed any of them getting grayshocklaugh out loud
Telly Lam

Never met a- lampost I- couldn't pee on
Barked: Sun Jun 1, '08 6:24pm PST 
Dogs are not so different from people. Think about it: some people can go grey in their 30s (like Anderson Cooper), while others are lucky and don't have to see their first grey hair until their 50s or 60s (Clairol Nice'nEasy notwithstanding).

Can't hold my- licker! :)
Barked: Sun Jun 1, '08 11:26pm PST 
Titus started getting grey on his chin around 1 yr
Brinn got a little grey patch on hers abt 2
Actually, all three of us got some grey hairs together,
It was right about the time we made an out of state move laugh out loud

ah..finally a- good life...
Barked: Mon Jun 2, '08 10:57am PST 
Arko is 2ish (maybe 3 now) and has grey on his chin and around his nose...

Morgan is 9 and is just now getting very slight grey flecks (its more that her very spotty muzzle is slowly becoming less spotty)....

Sarah is about 7 but her coloring is so light i'm not sure if the silver is from age or just her coloring
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