Changes in coat color/markings, etc. - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 01-25-2012, 08:44 PM Thread Starter
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Changes in coat color/markings, etc.

I was just curious as to whether or not horses change over the course of their life - especially regarding color and markings. Specifically, say a star...would it look exactly the same on one as a foal that it would when they were 12? What about coat color? Does it change slightly over the years or depending on the season?

I saw a web-sit of a MFT that was very different colors (even mane and tail) at different stages/seasons in his life. I guess I was wondering if this was common or a rarity.

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post #2 of 8 Old 01-25-2012, 08:48 PM
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Some colors change drastically with age (think Lp roan or gray), and some change seasonally or with different environmental/nutritional conditions (some blacks, palominos, etc). White markings tend not to change but some horses develop white hairs on their face as they age that can muddy the contours of a blaze or star.
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post #3 of 8 Old 01-25-2012, 09:02 PM Thread Starter
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This horse that I was using as an example was a roan. He looked drastically different throughout the years. If it didn't say it was the same horse, I never in a million years would have guessed it.

I'm trying to see if a certain registered horse is mine. The star looks VERY similar, but just slightly different. I was interested as to whether or not it would be exact over a 10 year life span. Only the DNA test will confirm if this horse is him, but until then, I've been trying to find out through pictures and descriptions.

Thank you!
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post #4 of 8 Old 01-25-2012, 09:17 PM
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Roans can have a pretty drastic seasonal change, from looking almost completely white to almost completely dark. If the star's just a tiny bit bigger and smudgier, it's possible; otherwise, probably not. They don't up and change shapes or regress or anything.
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post #5 of 8 Old 01-25-2012, 10:00 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks! Yeah, it is just a little bigger/smudgier in some photos, but same shape, place, etc. I appreciate the feedback!
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post #6 of 8 Old 01-26-2012, 04:48 AM
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My roan and my grey have seasonal changes that are very obvious.

Cocoa - 32 yr old QH, Cherokee - 8 yr old TWH & Toby - 16 yr old QH
R.I.P. Cocoa 4/13/78 - 2/9/11
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post #7 of 8 Old 01-26-2012, 05:24 AM
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When I get on the computer, I'll have to show you a picture of an appy at my barn. Chase was a nice bay with a blanket when he was a yearling, and by age 5 he roaned out and got left with some leopard spots.

Unbelievable how horses change!
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post #8 of 8 Old 01-26-2012, 07:34 AM
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My solid sorrel started to roan out a little when he was around 15. However, he is a TWH and one of his Foundation Stallion's name was "Roan Allen".

My solid red chestnut now has gray hairs around an old sacrum injury, from the stress of the injury. He does have a birth-strawberry shaped patch of white on his left hip that has never changed shaped.

My liver chestnut will now change to a rust color in the summer because of his metabolic issues. You wouldn't recognize him, except for his unique face marking.

Regarding markings: None of my horses markings have ever changed their shape unless an injury was involved that scarred in/around the natural marking.

That's why I have pictures. I also have lip pictures of my liver chestnut because he has such a unique "birth mark" just inside his lower lip.
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