What constitutes a Chocolate Havanese ...
There is much confusion and debate over Chocolate Havanese, and I am no expert, so what I have provided below are some undisputed references to Chocolate Havanese.
Chocolate coats can vary from very light milk chocolate, called Chocolate Mocha (much like our Male: Mocha, although he has several shades of Chocolate, some dark reddish, to brown ... very beautiful!) to a very rich, deep dark chocolate color. There may be Chocolate Sable, Chocolate Brindle, Chocolate/Tan, Chocolate Mocha and Chocolate Silver. Chocolate can be tinted golden, reddish or ash and come in many shades, from palest milk chocolate to dark chocolate. Chocolate refers to the pigment color and not the coat color. A chocolate needs only have 1 square inch of chocolate in the coat to be classified a chocolate, but must have the chocolate pigment to be a true chocolate.
True chocolate dogs will have self-colored liver or brown pigment on the nose, lips, pads and eye rims. Chocolate Havanese will have chocolate or clear nails. Chocolate Havanese dogs can not have any black in their pigment or hair/coat. All other colors of Havanese must have dark eyes and black pigment on the nose, eye rims, lips and pads. If not either solid black or chocolate pigment, they are termed a dilute and are can be wonderfully healthy pets, but are not show quality. A dilute chocolate will have pale pinkish nose and skin.
Chocolate Havanese dogs have lighter colored eyes than non-chocolate Havanese dogs. Their eyes come in very similar colors like human eyes (all shades of brown, hazel and amber). If your dog's eyes are very dark, almost black with a lighter brownish nose, then what you have is poor pigmentation (dilute) and not a chocolate. Self coloring means that the deepness of hair color will be matched by the deepness of pigmentation.
Latte is a carrier of the Chocolate gene, and Mocha is a true Chocolate, with chocolate pigmentation throughout and amber colored eyes.
Havanese coat coloration can make dramatic changes throughout their lifetime, and a coat that starts out chocolate can turn to mocha, or silver depending on the genes, but pigmentation will remain constant throughout their lifetime.
See the Colors Page for much more information on genetics and coloration.
Mocha was fairly dark reddish brown at birth, with white paws.
Notice the light pigmentation of the nose - this is an indication that the hair color will lighten with age, as it has.
Mocha at full maturity
retains some of the darker
reddish brown, but has turned much more light
Chocolate - Mocha colored.
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