Cream coloured coats appear on the Working Kelpie; however the colour has occurred in one or two Australian Kelpies as well. Genetically the colour is a recessive red and belong to the colour series E locus. The E gene decides what area of the coat may produce eumelanin. This gene in its dominant form is either E
and the dog is normally pigmented. The recessive form of the gene is e
and it prevents the eumelanin production in the skin cell and so normally pigmented strands of hair also lack eumelanin. The dog then has a yellow or red coat, while the nose, claws, pads, edge of the eye lids and lips has the colour of the eumelanin.
Recessive red has its own series but is more dominant than any other colour. This means that black, agouti, tan, saddle, wolf grey, merle and other colours will be eliminated, and the dog’s coat will be yellow or red if it is recessive red (e/e).
The following alleles in the E series known in the Kelpie so far:
E = normal pigmentation
e = recessive red
Examples of cream coloured Kelpies with different eumelanin pigments:
- A cream coloured Kelpie with B/B or B/b has black pigment on its nose, lips and around the eyes.
- A cream coloured Kelpie with b/b has brown pigment on its nose, lips and around the eyes.
- A cream coloured Kelpie with d/d has paler pigment on its nose, lips and around the eyes. The coat is also somewhat paler.