Difference between sooty and dun - The Horse Forum

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  • 5 Post By smrobs
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post #1 of 9 Old 02-14-2013, 09:21 PM Thread Starter
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Difference between sooty and dun

Okay, so it seems that most folks believe that the existance of a dorsal stripe is the only thing you need to say for certain that a horse is dun. Unfortunately, it's not that easy. There are many other things that dun does to the color of the horse that doesn't happen with a horse that has a dorsal stripe due to countershading/sooty.

Dun not only gives a horse a dorsal stripe, but it commonly lightens the base color and may also give the horse zebra striping on it's legs, shoulder barring, and sometimes lacing on the forehead.

I guess the real reason I got to really thinking about this is the herd of feral horses we just rounded up in the last couple of weeks. There were many of them that had dorsal stripes, but I know for certain that there isn't, nor has there ever been, any dun genes in their breeding pool.

Unfortunately, I only have decent pictures of 2 of them with prominent dorsal stripes, but I think it will be enough.

Oh, and please, no comment on their condition, they aren't my horses.

Here is an example of a chestnut horse with a dorsal stripe due to sooty/countershading.




Here is a random internet picture of a couple of red dun horses





Here is the second of the feral horses. She has a bay base and the sooty is clearly evident on her neck and shoulder area.


And here are a couple pictures of her dorsal stripe




As opposed to these bay dun horses







Anyway, just showing that a dorsal stripe doesn't automatically mean that the horse is carrying the dun gene.

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post #2 of 9 Old 02-14-2013, 09:35 PM
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This guy is a pure arabian, so no dun possible. He has a prominent dorsal, as well as leg barring. He DOESN'T have any dilution of the coat colour though. As Smrobs points out, a dun horse is one that has a dun gene, not one that has a dorsal stripe.




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post #3 of 9 Old 02-19-2013, 12:05 PM
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I know a mare that is bay but has a dorsal stripe. She has obvious signs of counter shading and her color can vary a bit from season to season.

Summer 2009
12328_105480796142805_7413041_n.jpg

Winter 2010
180289_188020927888791_8192188_n.jpg

Her dorsal stripe summer 2011
269016_214371341931371_5067860_n.jpg

Winter 2013
3531_559936534030560_2095789908_n.jpg
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post #4 of 9 Old 02-19-2013, 07:05 PM
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Evans - the seasonal change, the dorsal, and the "mealiness" all tell me that this mare you know, she is brown And beautiful!

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post #5 of 9 Old 02-20-2013, 11:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Chiilaa View Post
Evans - the seasonal change, the dorsal, and the "mealiness" all tell me that this mare you know, she is brown And beautiful!
don't know to much about color genetics so it may be that she is brown . I always loved her color, especially in the summer when she has a golden shine to her coat so I guess if she is brown I really like brown horses then :).

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post #6 of 9 Old 02-20-2013, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by ****edEvans View Post
don't know to much about color genetics so it may be that she is brown . I always loved her color, especially in the summer when she has a golden shine to her coat so I guess if she is brown I really like brown horses then :).
Brown horses are fantastic because you rarely get the same horse two seasons in a row. It's always fun to see how they shed out into their next coat.

Thank you for this post, smrobs. I know a few people who think/thought "dorsal stripe" automatically equals dun...even when their horse is an Arab (which as has been pointed out, don't carry dun).
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post #7 of 9 Old 02-20-2013, 04:47 PM
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****edEvans, I'm m e l t I n g at that driving picture. EVERYBODY at my house knows I wanna make "Buster" into a driving horse.
...needs more work...
I need more money to pay my Amish farrier to train him to drive. **Corporal...weeps**
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post #8 of 9 Old 02-20-2013, 05:29 PM
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****edEvans, I'm m e l t I n g at that driving picture. EVERYBODY at my house knows I wanna make "Buster" into a driving horse.
...needs more work...
I need more money to pay my Amish farrier to train him to drive. **Corporal...weeps**
I also love driving horses so I really understand you. Nothing compares with the view of a nice pair of horses pulling a nice little carriage. I really love to see the movement of the horse with all those muscles working. You can't do this while riding .
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post #9 of 9 Old 02-22-2013, 02:21 PM
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Dun
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