White & Black Catahoula Leopard Dog

Spotted Dog Breeds

Any dog with spots on their coat are considered to have a "spotted" coat. The quantity and size of the spots does not matter as long as they are evenly dispersed across the coat (i.e. a single splotch does not count as a spotted coat).

What are the different types of spotted coats?

It may surprise you to learn that there are currently five different types of spotted coats.

Spotted Coats - A classic "spotted" coat contains small spots that are evenly dispersed across the entire coat. The spots are always a darker color than the base coat color and the spots are normally the size of a coin.

Roan Coats - A roan pattern is when the coat contains multiple small to medium-sized splotches of color on the dog's body and sometimes face. The roan color is always a darker color than the base coat and the "splotches" normally are uneven in size and shape.

Ticked Coats - A ticked coat will have very small spots of color (similar to dots) appearing only on the white portions of the coat. These "ticks" oftentimes are most obvious on the face, stomach, and paws.

Mottled/Speckled Coats - A mottled or speckled coat occurs when small clusters of white fur are evenly dispersed across a darker colored base coat. Whether the coat is mottled vs speckled depends on the size of the white clusters. Speckled coats are when the white clusters are one-inch or smaller in size. Mottled coats have white clusters that are larger than one-inch in size.

Merle Coats - Merle coats appear similar to the roan pattern except the size of the "splotches" range from very small to very large and merle patterns occur in shades of blue and red. Merle coats also indicate the dog has inherited the merle allele which oftentimes gives the dog blue or partially blue eyes.

Spotted Patterns

Below are the different patterns found across all dog breeds with spotted coats (including all variations of spots). Click on a pattern below to see a list of breeds and pictures of dogs with that coat style.