Finnish Lapphund Breed Magazine - Showsight



T he first thing people notice when they watch Finnish Lapphunds ringside is the array of colors and mark- ings. Lappies (what we affectionally call the breed) should be easily recognizable, but they are not a cook- ie-cutter breed. Each dog is unique in its own way because of its color and markings, with few Lappies having identical markings. The Sami people who bred these dogs valued the diversity of col- ors and traditionally named their dogs based on its coat color and texture. The AKC Breed Standard states: “All colors are permitted, but the primary color (the color which covers the largest portion of the dog) must cover the body. A color which consists of bands of different colors on a single hair shaft (sable, wolf sable, or domino) is considered a single color. Secondary colors are allowed on the head, neck, chest, underside of the body, legs, and tail.” In Lappies, there are a lot of color options and combinations. No single color is considered ideal, although there are some colors which are more common than others. Color is defined as a single primary color on the body, with secondary color or colors allowed on the head, neck, chest, belly, legs, feet, or tail. The primary color must cover at least 51 percent of the dog. Lappies can be sable, wolf sable, tan point, solid, or domino. Common solid colors are black, brown, or cream. The whole color combo will be hidden if the dog is cream. They can also come with a light undercoat which can make identification of the color of the adult coats more difficult. Identification of the color can also be affected by whether or not the dog is in full coat or out of coat. Any color can have white markings, typically on the chest, belly, and feet, along with lighter spectacles around the eyes. Dogs with noticeable white markings, plus tan pattern markings, are called “tri-color” in England. In Finland, extensive white mark- ings often go without any mention at all.


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