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Sable Cockers


What is a Sable Cocker?
A sable cocker looks like ASCOB cocker which rolled soot or ashes.  It appears to have black tipped hairs.  But actually the black hairs are intermingled with the other colored hairs.  You can follow a black hair to the root, it is black, not a variegated strand (on a brown sable, the hair is brown to the root).   Sables usually have dark ear feathers and appear to have smudged eyeliner on their face.

BLACK SABLE:  Genetically, this is a BLACK dog with Tan Points (SABLEING) that have spread underneath its coat.. It will look like an ASCOB dog with  a black overlay, black nose and black pads. This is why the color is confusing to people. It looks like a buff dog with a black overlay when it is really a black dog with a tan underlay. Looks the same but is genetically very different.  The puppy may be born BLACK, or Black/tan, or sable. If born black, tan points will appear and begin to spread underneath the black. Whatever color the tan points are is the primary color you will see when it matures. If the tan points are red, you will see a red (MAHOGANY) dog with black overlay. If the tan points are light cream, you will see a light buff dog with black overlay. If the dog has very few to no black hairs visible, it is called a clear sable. You would have to know the dog’s genotype to identify it.











                              Sable English Cocker (above)
                          Addition info at www.ingridsworld.com

BROWN SABLE: A brown sable is not a brown dog with a brown or black overlay. It is a BROWN dog whose Tan points (because of the sable gene) have spread underneath the brown coat. What you see is an ASCOB dog with a Brown overlay, brown nose and brown pads. The dog will be the color of the tan points he carries with a brown overlay. If he has a lot of overlay he may look like a brown dog at first, until you see the buff underneath. If it has very little overlay, it is called a CLEAR BROWN SABLE. What you will see with your eye is a BUFF dog.                   

Sable puppies may be born black, or black/tan, or sable and add white to the partis.  The brown sable may be born brown, brown/tan or brown sable, brown parti or brown tri-color.  If born black (or brown), tan points will develop and begin to spread underneath the black.  Whatever the color of the tan points is the color you will see when it matures.  If the tan points are a light cream, you will see light buff dog with a black overlay.  If the tan points are red, you will see a mahogany with a black overlay, etc.







                                                                                                                          Shadyhill's Harry Potter







                        a brown sable Shitzu                                                                    a brown/white sable puppy                   

Sable Color Changes with Maturity

Dachshund photos courtesy of Jean DeWolf, Shadyhill Cockers

The drawings show a typical color change for a sable.  The dog may be born black, develop 'tan points', and then increasingly turn lighter.   Later, when the dog develops a mature coat, the black will appear to look like an overlay.  This is because the black hairs usually grow longer than the other colors of coat.  Now having said that, it is also true that a puppy may be born already the color of one of the above stages.  It does not have to be born black, or in the case of partis, black and white.  The same color changes occur in brown sables.

Shown below is Ch Artistry's Soot n'Cinders litter sister, shown as a puppy and an adult.


It can happen also that a sable can lose its sabling and revert to a black or black and white dog.  It will not revert to a stage with tan points, but will lose all or most of the tan.  These dogs are black sables.  They are quite showable under our standard.  In fact, I know of a few such dogs that have completed their championships as black and white partis because the sabling faded.


You would have to be very close and in the sun to find any sabling on these dogs.