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While at the vet last week, I ran into a red sable GSD owner. He asked me an interesting question... what color does a sable's hair start with? Basically, what color comes out of the hair follicle first?

Its been driving me nuts since then. He also didn't know the answer :crazy: I keep obsessing over Knuckles' hair to the point he's giving me strange looks... :p
 

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on my black sable her undercoat was light grey and is turning brown. The guard hairs start out grey and turn black at the tips. She also has a grey collar/harness area and a bit of a bitch stripe beginning. Its pretty easy to see the hair on the floor and tell.
I reread and it must be the black, unless the hairs change color. Ive heard old stories of someones hair changing white overnight from getting scared.
 

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on my black sable her undercoat was light grey and is turning brown. The guard hairs start out grey and turn black at the tips. She also has a grey collar/harness area and a bit of a bitch stripe beginning. Its pretty easy to see the hair on the floor and tell.
I reread and it must be the black, unless the hairs change color. Ive heard old stories of someones hair changing white overnight from getting scared.
Thats what I thought too, but not all of the hair is black on the tips.

At first I thought white/tan because when I brush him it looks like I brushed a golden/blonde dog, but I don't know. Like I said, it's been bugging me LOL
 

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The undercoat is lighter, when you are brushing your dog,usually the undercoat is what comes out.
Thats why sables coloration changes with the seasons, the thicker undercoat will lighten up the color.
Undercoat is fluffy, guard hair is more sleek/coarse and the guard hair is what has the sable banding.
 

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starting at the skin there are undercoat hair follicles and guard coat follicles. The ones you mostly see are the guard coat and with them being black at the tip they must start off as tiny black hairs.
 
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