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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Do puppies with small white marks on their chests early on usually get more visible? And does anyone have pictures to show? I saw on here it’s part of the breed but just wondering how it looks on darker goldens.
 

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Esquire Golden Retrievers
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It's not supposed to be part of the breed, but it happens. Sometimes it disappears as they grow, and those are known as "milk spots." But often when it is on the chest they will stay, and the more prominent the patch is, the more likely it is to stay and be noticeable when they are older. If it's just a few hairs, that might go away entirely or at least become fairly invisible.

The breed standard says, "Feathering may be lighter than rest of coat. With the exception of graying or whitening of face or body due to age, any white marking, other than a few white hairs on the chest, should be penalized according to its extent."
 

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White chest markings, white toes, and white spots on the head have always been present. Show breeders try harder than field breeders to avoid breeding dogs with white markings. Some field line dogs have a substantial amount of white.
Like this handsome fellow, a recent influential field sire:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·

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My girl is from show lines. She has a white blaze and a white chest spot that's covered by longer yellow fur, so you don't know she has a white spot on her chest unless you flip the fur up.

Her white blaze was striking when she was young, but now most people just think she has ultra white face, lol. Left picture: 2 years old (ish). Right picture: 7 years old.
DSC00475.JPG 7995X6084.JPG
 

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My girl is from show lines. She has a white blaze and a white chest spot that's covered by longer yellow fur, so you don't know she has a white spot on her chest unless you flip the fur up.

Her white blaze was striking when she was young, but now most people just think she has ultra white face, lol. Left picture: 2 years old (ish). Right picture: 7 years old.
View attachment 883535 View attachment 883536

Your girl is so pretty.
 

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Esquire Golden Retrievers
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White chest markings, white toes, and white spots on the head have always been present. Show breeders try harder than field breeders to avoid breeding dogs with white markings. Some field line dogs have a substantial amount of white.
Like this handsome fellow, a recent influential field sire:
Handsome boy. But calling back to threads of the past, this is one of the things I had in mind when I opined that many field breeders don't care much about breeding to the standard. I personally don't care about white markings (some are cute), but we do have a breed standard, which people care about to varying degrees. Pet people have no reason to care about white markings. And frankly they sometimes give a dog his/her identity.
 
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Handsome boy. But calling back to threads of the past, this is one of the things I had in mind when I opined that many field breeders don't care much about breeding to the standard. I personally don't care about white markings (some are cute), but we do have a breed standard, which people care about to varying degrees. Pet people have no reason to care about white markings. And frankly they sometimes give a dog his/her identity.
"Standard" colors, for many breeds, are arbitrary. The white markings in goldens were a part of the breed when the "standard" was written. Why it was arbitrarily decided that the marking were undesirable is anyone's guess. It is similar to the AKC poodle standard, which only recognizes solid-colored poodles. Very odd, because most of the earliest depictions of poodles are of parti-colored dogs, and most other registries recognize partis and phantoms. Why? Who knows. Plenty of "white" conformation-ring poodles are actually parti-colored dogs. ("White" poodles are really very dilute apricot dogs. A dilute apricot/white parti-colored dog looks solid white as it matures.)

To the people who value performance in goldens, it would be irrational to eliminate one of the very best performance dogs from the gene pool because he had a white spot. It is probably also the case that field/performance breeders often choose puppies with white spots in part because of a backlash against the look of modern conformation dogs. Color is the easiest way to make sure your field golden is not mistaken for a conformation-line dog, although you don't have to be around goldens for long before you can tell at a glance whether you are looking at a conformation-line dog, no matter what color it is. There is also a movement among field people to chose the reddest of dogs, which I personally think is unfortunate. While I don't like to see any chose-up conformation titles in a pedigree, I do wish there more very pale field-line goldens. A nearly white dog would be a heck of a lot easier to see at 100 yards than a medium gold or dark gold dog.
 
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