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208 Breeds, 422 Health Conditions  |  Find a Vet

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Blue Doberman Syndrome (Color Mutant Alopecia)




Condition Overview

This disease is seen most often in fawn and blue-coated Doberman Pinschers, and occasionally in blue Great Danes, blue Newfoundlands, Chow Chows, Whippets, Italian Greyhounds, and other breeds with dilute coat colors. Some blue Dobermans do not manifest this disease before 3 years of age.


Affected dogs are born with a healthy hair coat. At 6 months of age or later, the coat becomes thin, brittle, and dry and takes on a moth-eaten appearance. The skin becomes rough and scaly. Blackheads, pimples, and pustules (puss filled pimples) appear on the involved areas.


The coat mutation has a genetic basis.


Diagnosis is made by physical exam.


Treatment is directed toward relieving the surface condition, which involves shampoos that rehydrate the skin, remove scales, and flush the hair follicles. These must be prescribed by your vet.

Because the affected hair is fragile and comes out easily, vigorous brushing and the use of harsh or inappropriate shampoos aggravates the problem and should be avoided.


Affected dogs should not be bred.


Please contact your veterinarian for advice if you suspect your pet may be affected with this disease.

Show Sources & Contributors +


Dog Owners Home Veterinary Handbook

Publisher: Wiley Publishing, 2007

Website: http://www.wiley.com/WileyCDA/

Authors: Debra M. Eldredge, Liisa D. Carlson, Delbert G. Carlson, James M. Giffen MD

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