Why Do Some Dogs Have Different Eye Color?
Have you ever seen dogs with two different colored eyes? Stunning! But why does this happen? Find out everything you ever wanted to know about heterochromia.
Dogs and humans are not just best of friends, both also share the same qualities and even unique traits and one of these unique traits is the eye color. There are just unique things that could possibly happen and sometimes it can be treated as unusual ones. Having different eye color is just one of the unusual cases for dogs and humans. In dogs this phenomena is called Heterochromia.
Although it may appear as an abnormality, there are some cases of Heterochromia that indicates illnesses. Dogs’ eye color depends on the level of melanin present in the iris on which, is actually the same with humans. A high level of melanin could give a brown eye color or the usual color of dogs’ eyes.
A dog's eye color is determined by the amount of melanin found in the iris. Brown eyes indicate a high concentration of melanin, while green or blue eyes indicate a lower amount. Dogs with two different colored eyes have differing melanin levels in each eye. Heterochromia, however, can also be centralized. That is, the iris of one eye can be two different colors.
Dogs that were born to have different eye colors fall in the congenital case. Heterochromia can actually be passed through generations. If a puppy had two different colored eyes when he was born, then the heterochromia is a genetic condition passed along from his mother and father. If you got a dog having such condition since it was a pup, the most probable reason is that its parents either have the condition or even both of them. However there are also cases when Heterochromia can be acquired. It can happen in an occurrence of a disease such as glaucoma, cataract, or even the failure of the optic nerve to develop.
Heterochromia is much more common on dogs with lighter coat. It can again be explained due to the levels of melanin. The color of the dogs coat is still part of the melanin’s coverage. One of the most common dog breed to have a different eye color is Siberian husky. However it can still occur even to those who don’t have light coat.
Some breeds of dog are more disposed to have heterochromia. Among these are Siberian huskies, American foxhounds, and Australian Shepherds. In addition to dogs, cats and horses are also susceptible to heterochromia. And, to a lesser extent, the condition also occurs in humans.
Like us, humans, every dog is unique in appearance and personality. Dogs with two different colored eyes certainly fit that mold. So if your dog has heterochromia, chalk it up to just another thing that makes your pet special. And know your pooch is not alone.