Greying Out?? Will he be fleabitten or dappled??

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Greying Out?? Will he be fleabitten or dappled??

This is a discussion on Greying Out?? Will he be fleabitten or dappled?? within the Horse Colors and Genetics forums, part of the Horse Breeds, Breeding, and Genetics category

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    04-10-2012, 12:56 PM
Greying Out?? Will he be fleabitten or dappled??

So I have a lovely grey warmblood who has been greying out like crazy over the past year. He was a dark, dark grey with hints of bay when I bought him as a 4 year old three years ago and now he is almost white. :(

I know that greying out in inevitable for all the little grey ponies, but what I'm really wondering is what kind of grey he will be in the future? And if there is anyway to tell this?? I'm more concerned if he'll turn into a fleabitten (I reallllllly hope not haha) or white grey and keep some dapples.
My friend said that if the horse was a bay/chestnut when it was younger, it will be fleabitten and if it was black, it will be a grey white. Not sure if this is true or not but any info on this would be greatly appreciated! :)

Here are some picture's of Robbie's "greying process" haha. ;)

Baby Robbie (people asked me if he was an appy because he had bright white spots on his bum haha):

Six months later...

Six months later...

Getting whiter...

Soooo white, most recent...

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    04-10-2012, 01:04 PM
There is no way to tell where your horse's greying process will go as it varies from horse to horse.

If he is heterzygous (one grey gene) he will more than likely end up felabitten, if he is homozygous (two grey genes) he will more than likely just end up white...
flytobecat likes this.
    04-10-2012, 01:10 PM
Green Broke
I think he is gorgeous!!!
    04-10-2012, 01:16 PM
Super Moderator
I don't think there's anyway to know. In that last picture he kinda looks like he's getting a few fleabites on his cheek and shoulder but that could be part of the graying out process.

On the plus side, there is fleabitten gray and then there's fleabitten gray. I've seen them where they're crazy fleabitten and it just and then there are horses, like my mare, who are very lightly fleabitten and it looks really good. My mare isn't fleabitten in the winter (her winter hair comes in all white) so it's really fun to watch her flea bites come in in the summer, some years they're darker and other years she barely has any. She likes to keep it fun.

Personally, I think a few fleabites look really classy, especially when they're dark. They can also camouflage some dirt which is always a plus with gray horses!

And you know Robbie, he'll be able to pull it off, fleabites or no. :)

ETA- Once a horse is fully gray/"white" and they aren't fleabitten, there are no dapples at all. They're just white. It's either fleabites or nothing.
smrobs and Speed Racer like this.
    04-10-2012, 01:32 PM
Originally Posted by Wallaby    
Once a horse is fully gray/"white" and they aren't fleabitten, there are no dapples at all. They're just white. It's either fleabites or nothing.
Exactly right, Wallaby. I have an Arabian gelding who was a lovely, dappled steel gray with black legs/mane/tail when I got him. He's now a fleabitten white.
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flytobecat likes this.
    04-10-2012, 01:40 PM
Super Moderator
Casper is so cute!

Just for comparison to SR's boy, this is Lacey at the absolute darkest fleabite-wise that I've seen her:

And she was 25 then.
There is quite the range in the quantity of fleabites between fleabitten horses.
    04-10-2012, 01:42 PM
I tell people that Casper knows I'm not a fan of gray horses, so is trying his darndest to get more and more fleabitten until he's full chestnut!
Wallaby, csimkunas6 and amp23 like this.
    04-10-2012, 01:55 PM
LOL. As Dobe gets more white, he is developing more and more buckskin colored fleabites. I think that is rather rare as I've never seen or heard of a horse with yellow fleabites. They are almost impossible to see in the winter but are relatively clear in the summer.

His fleabites didn't start showing up until after his dapples disappeared, though. I don't know if that's just because they are so light that they are hard to see or if that is how it's supposed to go with the graying process.

This was a couple of years ago and he had zero fleabites but a few dapples.

And this was last year, his dapples are almost completely gone but his fleabites are coming in. (plus, his big yellow blood mark on his face that looks like he laid in a puddle of pee LOL)
    04-10-2012, 02:02 PM
My horse went from dapples to white and finally this year she has gotten some flea bite markings. You can't see them from the picture since she doesn't have many yet and I'm guessing they won't be too overbearing on her coat. But who knows! The process takes awhile. She is 13 years old and her mom is a chestnut, dad is grey.
    04-10-2012, 03:04 PM
Green Broke
The base coat before the greying process begins does not determine if the are flea bitten or not. I was raised with many grey foals. Only one of them was really flea bitten, and she was showing her flea bites before she got to a light grey.

For example, here is a gelding that was born dark chestnut, no flea bites ;)

He is a heterozygous grey, one grey (non flea bitten) parent
Here is his full sister (born chestnut):

She had a very few, scattered flea bitten spots that were hard to find.
Their little half sister (also born chestnut) who had a very flea bitten heterozygous grey sire:

She had her flea bitten marks showing up by the time she was three years old.

It is a case by case basis if they are flea bitten or not. I haven't seen any greys that have solid black base coat get flea bitten, but have seen some chestnut and bay based greys end up being flea bitten. But not all chestnut and bay based greys end up being flea bitten. I would consider it more likely to occur if the grey parent is flea bitten

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