There are 3 Primary Colors:
Red - Dominant over all others and dominant in nature.  Only requires 1 red gene to be Red.

Black - Dominant in nature.  Only requires 1 black gene to be black.

Brown - Is Recessive in nature - requires 2 brown genes to be brown.

To be breed standard ALL Blue, Fawn, Black & Browns in Min Pins & Harlequin Pinschers MUST have Tan points.

HPA and ACR require ALL dogs registered to be within Breed Standards.

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Comes in varying shades from light blonde color to a deep dark mahogany.
Red is the lighter genetic type with NO black tipping on hair.
Stag Red is the darker genetic type with black tips on hairs.
Red Merle is an undesirable color/pattern combination due to it's lack of being a visibly seen genetic combo.

​Nose can be Black or Brown.  Brown nosed Red is the Red dog expressing they carry the brown gene.​​


Black/Tan for the Min-Pin, Harlies, Rat Terriers and yes even the Yorkies.
None of these breeds have PUREBRED solid blacks - Tan points is a requirement.
​Black noses - Black eyelids - Black paw pads.



Often referred to as "Tiger Striped" 

Can appear on coat as well as in the Points area.

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Bi, Tri, Tuxedo, Piebald, Belted, Merle, Brindle

Combination Patterns

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The combination of more than one pattern on a single dog.

i.e.  Merle/Piebald, Merle/Brindle, Merle/Brindle/Piebald


Blue is a dilute color gene.  It is the dilute of black.

​To be breed standard ALL Blues in Min-Pins, Harlies and Rat Terriers 

must have tan points.



Bi is a 2 color dog without Tan Points.


A white based dog with patches of colored hair resembling a Holstein Cow.

Brown/Tan for the Min-Pin, Harlies, Rat Terriers and Yorkies.
None of these breeds have solid browns - Tan points is a requirement.

MUST have brown noses, eye lids and paw pads.
There is NO black on a brown dog.



Dilutes are Blue, Fawn, Blue-Fawn and Tan
​Dilutes should be bred with extreme caution and only from obviously full coated breeding dogs.

Dilutes can have a condition called CDA - Color Dilution Alopecia meaning hair loss known to the Dilute gene.
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Fawns require the dog to have BOTH the Brown gene and the Blue (*dilute) gene.
All of the Harlequin Pinscher, Min Pin, and Rat Terrier breeds require tan points with Fawn.



a specific pattern on a dog of any coat color having "WHITE" feet, chest and collar.  A Tuxedo pattern makes the dog look like it's wearing a Tuxedo when standing on it's hind feet.


a Solid base coat Dog with minimal white markings and Tan Points

Tan is the dilution of the brown SABLE (*dark tipped hairs) on a Red dog instead of the

whole coat being diluted.

A tan has a brown pigmented skin, brown nose, brown eye lids and brown paw pads.
Tans do not have tan/rust points.
Tans are not a desirable color in Harlequin Pinschers due to their Red genetics.

Colors and Patterns of Dogs seems to be something very confusing to breeders and puppy buyers alike.

We hope this page helps clear up some of the confusion.

We have restricted our Color/Pattern page to only those breeds raised here at Run-N-Ridge.


Blue-Fawn is the dilution of the black SABLE (*dark tipped hairs) on a Red dog instead of t

he whole coat being diluted.

A blue-fawn has a blue pigmented skin making the coat appear a Peachy cream color.
Blue-Fawns must have Blue noses, blue eye rims and blue paw pads.
Blue-Fawns do not have tan/rust points.
Blue-Fawns are not a desirable color in Harlequin Pinschers due to their Red genetics.

Merle is a PATTERN and not a color - it MODIFIES colors.
Merle can occur on any color and even in combination with other patterns:

Merling can be in varying degrees from just a single spot to almost full body.
The dogs base color will be the DARKER areas.

Please visit the Merle Genetic Page for more FACTS on Merles.
Merle modifies the coat by LIGHTING areas it touches which can include eyes turning them blue.​