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Pomeranian Colors

Let's talk about the colors of a Pom's coat. Information on how to see all of the photos is below. Those who are not familiar with this breed often associate orange as the color of the Pom. However, it is not an overstatement to say that this adorable toy breed comes in a rainbow of various coats. 

It is truly remarkable how the Pomeranian originated from a pure white sled dog (weighing over 30 pounds) into one of the dogs with the most interesting possibilities in appearance.

There are solids, partis (two colors), tri-coats and even a speckled merle will hold 5 or even 6 different hues.
Let's take a look at the descriptions of some of the most interesting colors:

Sable - Sometimes this color will not show in a Pomeranian picture, if the sabling is very light. Yet with other Poms, it's distinct. A sable Pomeranian will have a solid base and the sable comes into play via guard hairs that have black tips. 

There are many types of sables, including cream sable (light base coat with black guard hairs), chocolate sable (brown coat with black guard hairs) and just about everything in-between.

Red - A red Pomeranian will be a reddish-orange colored dog that is often described as a rust color. It will be the darkest, deepest orange possible in regard to fur. A brown/chocolate/dark cream that has a red or orange tint is often categorized as a red.

Orange- An orange Pomeranian can range from light to dark. However, once the orange deepens enough, it would be classified as a red. If any black striping occurs, this brings it to a orange brindle. Any black tipping brings it to an orange sable. 

Cream - With a cream Pomeranian, color can actually range quite a bit. This can be very light - one "step" darker than a white, and it goes through shade gradients all the way to what one would consider to be brown. 

How do you distinguish a dark cream from chocolate (brown)? It will show in the skin pigmentation of the Pom. A deep cream Pom will have black pigmentation, and a chocolate will have brown points (eye rims, nose, lips, paw pads).

Buyer beware - creams are often born white.
They will then have a darkening of hairs as they mature, most often done during the "puppy uglies" stage.

Black - Black Pomeranians will have deep, solid black eye rims, nose, lips and paws. A true solid black will not have a secondary color. If any exists, the dog will be a parti. Small patches can be dubbed "markings", larger patches 1/3 of the coat or more, will put the Pom into the category of "black and white", "black and tan", etc. 

Blue - A blue Pomeranian is a less commonly seen, yet beautiful color. The easiest way to spot a blue is by looking at the nose. All true blue Poms will have blue skin; this is what sets them apart from black coats; with blue, the coat may appear black but if the skin pigmentation is blue, the Pom will be a blue.

Blue is a diluted black. Sometimes the fur will look dull; with other dogs it may have a metallic tinge to it. The skin points (nose, eye rims, paws. lips) will have a blue tint (sometimes only noticeable in bright sunlight)... Blue eyes are more common in blue Pomeranians and merles.
white and black Pomeranian
Adorable white Pomeranian with black markings. The white running over the forehead is called a flare. Meka, owners: Tony & Lola Brown
Orange sable Pomeranian
Beautiful red sable Pomeranian- notice how the deep rich coat has black tipped hairs.
Sasha, Owner: Tan Jia Yi
black Pomeranian
Amazing solid black Pomeranian. To have a solid coat without any other coloring is rare.
Raphie, Owners: Seth & Katie
solid white Pomeranian
A rare, pure solid white Pomeranian
Photo courtesy of Diamond Ice Poms
White - A true white will be a pure snow, there will not be any shading to the coat, otherwise this places the dog into the cream category. 

The color will be solid without another hue mixed in. A secondary color will move the Pomeranian to a parti (2 colors).

Some parti's are solid at birth and the secondary color will grow in as the Pom matures. For this reason, some Poms are registered as whites, but will grow to be parti's. More on White Pomeranians

Wolf sable - Such a wonderful coat...This is a light grey undercoat with a darker shade of steel grey guard hairs with black tips. There will not be cream or an orange tint to the grey base color. With a wolf sable Pomeranian, eye rims, nose, lips and pads are black.
Chocolate - Many, but not all, chocolates will remind you of a Hershey's chocolate bar. More often than not, it is a deep, dark, thick brunette. However, any hue as light as what may appear to be a cream is considered a chocolate as long as skin pigmentation is dark brown (beaver has a lighter noise). 

You can read more here: Chocolate Pomeranians

Brindle - This is actually a pattern. This Pomeranian dog will have a base under coat of golden tan, deep red or light orange and then have black fur crossing over in stripes, whjch can run thin or thick. With some, this brindling will only be apparent on the saddle (back).
Chocolate colored Pomeranian
This is a true chocolate colored Pom. Notice how the nose is brown.
Kooter, Owner: Kelly Brown
merle Pomeranian
Wonderfully specked merle Pomeranian. Notice how the color is splashed over the coat.
Photo courtesy of Keen Pomeranians
Merle- Merling is the dilution of any color that falls into the coat. Most often you will see a light blue, grey or red blended in, usually in patches or "dots", giving the dog an interesting speckled appearance. More on the Merle.

Lavender - This is an exotic Pomeranian...imagine a grey, lightened with a touch of purple! Truly amazing. It is believed that lavender is a diluted blue, which is a diluted black and it is a difficult color to breed for.

Note: The colors of a Pom is a very complex topic. This, of course is an overview. Do you know the terms used for each part of a Pom's body that color appears on? 

Do you know which color to register a Pom if their color is to be changing as they grow? Do which colored Poms will be born with brown eyes and then change to blue? Or how to breed for certain colors? 

To answer all of these questions and more, we have put together the PetPom Book for you. It is available in both hard copy & eBook, for preferred, easy reading. Learn more.
Beaver - Beaver is an interesting color. It is a dilute chocolate.  Some may mistake a cream Pom for a beaver; however this is determined by the skin pigmentation. Creams always have black noses (and paws and eye rims). A beaver colored Pomeranian will have beaver skin pigmentation (which is a diluted chocolate, which will be light brown skin)

Parti - Colored Pomeranians

Any Pomeranian that has a second solid color is deemed to be parti-color. A parti-colored is just as valuable and highly regarded as a solid. Parti Poms are very each dog will be unique and the patterns can be quite remarkable.

Some dog breeds such as the Boxer are deducted points or barred from dog shows if their colors are not "right".
beaver colored Pomeranian
A cute beaver colored Pomeranian puppy.
Photo courtesy of Sharp Poms
For example, a white Boxer with tan patches. However, a Pomeranian of any combination holds the same value as a solid Pom. However, we should note that some dog organizations will give higher points to a parti-pom if:

    * The Pom has a base coat of white with only 1 certain secondary color
    * The patches are symmetrical. For example, a white Pomeranian with a black patch on each leg
    * There is a strike of white running up the head
    * The patch matches the points. The points are the lips, eye rims, nose and pads of the paws. Any patches that fall in the blue category should have corresponding blue points. A Pom with brown patches should have brown points and a Pomeranian with just about every other colored fur patches would have black points.

What makes a parti-color? It is the genes of the dam and sire (dog's parents). In addition, genes can and often do skip generations. When 2 parti Pomeranians are breed together, this will always produce parti puppies.

There are 3 basic types of Parti Pomeranians: Irish Parti, Piebald Parti and Extreme
  • What is an Irish Parti? This dog will have a white collar, chest, legs and most often blaze.
  • What is Piebald Parti? This type will have 50/50 coloring .
  • What is a Extreme Parti? This dog will have 80% or more of white fur and will have spots of other color on its back.
orange and cream Pomeranian
Orange & Cream Piebald Parti
Photo courtesy of Toy Pomz
Color Change!

Can a Pomeranian change colors? Yes! And it happens more often than not. 

Some owners wonder if their once solid Pom is turning into a parti. This change most certainly can take place and often this often happens when the dog enters the puppy uglies. The puppy coat may be a completely different color than the adult dog coat. New shadings or even new hues never previously seen before may grow in.

During this time, a once solid Pomeranian may become a parti-colored due to the changes that take place during this temporary phase of an extremely heavy shed. In cases of change a solid may develop into a different solid... once all of the puppy fur is replaced by a new shade, the Pomeranian will be solid again, albeit a different shade. For example, a red sable may turn into a sable once having its adult coat of fur.
Example of dramatic color change - As mentioned, coat color changes are expected. However, sometimes, the change can be more than you could have imagined. Have a look at little Dudley (below on mobile). The first photo was from May of 2015. 

The second photo is Dudley 1 year and 5 months later in October of 2016. As you can see, he has a ring of pure white hair around his head.

This amazing color change is due to the graying gene (G). Despite the name, the graying gene can cause hairs to turn white. Quite a few breeds can have this gene, including the Pomeranian. This gene causes graying as a dog matures (the dog is not born with the lighter color); it can begin to happen at any time, at any rate of speed, and is not related to graying that occurs with some dogs in old age. Essentially, the graying gene causes some hairs to not hold color as they otherwise would. 

And the reason that the white appears as a circle is this Pom genetically has a black mask, which keeps the face black. 
Pomeranian after pic, black with white ring on head
Photos courtesy of Elaine Berg 
Does Coat Color Matter?

In dog shows, all Pomeranians are allowed to enter and there is not one color is judged to be a better than another one. For example, a black Pomeranian is not consider more rare or more valuable than a parti-color Pom. The only time that this issue matters is if you have your own personal preference.

If you are buying a Pom and want a certain colored dog, it is suggested to find a good breeder ahead of time. Once doing so, you can ask that breeder if he or she has plans to breed white Pomeranians, black Pomeranians, etc.  If a breeder has both a male and female dog of the exact same color, the pups will most likely have those genes, as well. However the color of a dog's fur can skip a generation. A breed who specialized in certain colors will carefully select the pairings of dog who will most likely produce the desired color... however Mother Nature plays the final role in this.
Eye Color - The AKC, CKC, FCI and KC call out for a Pom to have dark eyes. But what does that mean and is it possible for a Pom to have blue eyes? Or what about green? Find out more: Pomeranian Eye Color.
Noses: Pomeranians, per the AKC standard, should have black noses, unless self colored, as with beaver, chocolate and blue. The Pomeranian Nose Color page covers black, blue, chocolate and lavender. And for more, look to Beaver, Parti and Dudley noses.
Tons of Photos & Much More Information

The colors of a Pomeranian is a very complex topic. This, of course is an overview. Do you know the terms used for each part of a Pom's body that color appears on? Do you know which color to register a Pom if their color is to be changing as they grow? Did you ever see photos of every Pomeranian color in the world?

Would you like to see:
  • Photos of every color in the 19 AKC list of Pomeranian colors
  • Photos of colors that you do not see on the AKC list of colors, but breeders do have on their AKC applications
  • Photos of every exotic color of the Pom, not found on the AKC list or the breeder's application, but do exist
  • Photos of every single type of marking a Pom can have
  • Photos of every place a color can fall on a Pomeranian
  • Photos of the different eye colors of a Pomeranian
  • Detailed and easy to understand explanation of coloring, pigmentation & why certain colors exist
If so, check out the most comprehensive Pomeranian-specific book that exists NOW IN PRINT TOO!: The PetPom Book.
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