The White Head Gene: What You Need to Know about Pied (2023)


What is the pied gene? ›

Dogs. In many dog breeds the Piebald gene is common. The white parts of the fur interrupt the pigemented coat patterns. Dogs that may have a spotted or multicolored coat, are often called piebald if their body is almost entirely white or another solid color with spotting and patches on the head and neck.

What does it mean if a dog is pied? ›

Pied means that it is white or eggshell colored skin with few to many patches of a dark color. This means that most pied French Bulldogs are white in color with a darker color. You will notice that pied is a straight opposite of Brindle. Other colors and color patterns.

What does extreme pied mean? ›


This term is used to describe a dog who is mostly white, often with 10% or less color. These dogs tend to test as homozygous for the piebald gene (sp/sp) but they appear to be far more white than most Pieds, and it is speculated that there is another reason to cause the high white.

What color is pied? ›

Pied means colorfully jumbled. If you're looking at kittens, you may see solid black ones, solid white, or ones with lots of different patches of color. You'd call a patchy one pied. Pied was first used to refer to magpies' black and white plumage.

Is the piebald gene dominant? ›

Human piebald trait is an autosomal dominant defect in melanocyte development characterized by patches of hypopigmented skin and hair.

Is piebald a genetic defect? ›

The human piebald trait is inherited as an autosomal dominant disorder. The white areas are typically located on the front, middle portion of the forehead (called a white forelock), eyebrows, chin, abdomen, feet and hands. Piebaldism can sometimes be associated with deafness.

Are pied dogs deaf? ›

Causes. Deafness associated with piebald coloring is inherited in some breeds, but the presence of the gene by itself is not sufficient to cause deafness. For example, all Dalmatians have two copies of the extreme piebald gene (homozygous), but not all of them are deaf – there appear to be other genes involved as well.

Can you breed a pied to a merle? ›

It is generally not recommended to breed two coat patterns that are associated with genetic health problems, such as piebald and merle.

Is pied a recessive gene in dogs? ›

Piebald gene is recessive to dominant S (non-white) gene. This means if two piebald carrier dogs are mated ( Ss genotype, non-white phenotype), there is a 25% chance of a piebald cub occurring in the litter, and 50% that the puppy will be a piebald carrier.

Is pied a dominant or recessive? ›

Single factor dominant pieds and clearflight pieds will have all black eyes with white iris rings. Recessive Pieds will have completely black eyes, with no iris ring present. SF dominant pieds will typically have a complete or broken band of pied feathers across their belly.

What is piebald mutation? ›

Piebaldism is a condition characterized by the absence of cells called melanocytes in certain areas of the skin and hair. Melanocytes produce the pigment melanin, which contributes to hair, eye, and skin color. The absence of melanocytes leads to patches of skin and hair that are lighter than normal.


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