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Blue Eyed Aussiedoodles

Updated: Jul 1

There is no denying that Blue Eyed Aussiedoodles are gorgeous.

Australian Shepherds are one of the few canine breeds that naturally carry the blue eyed gene. This striking and unique feature is passed from parent to offspring but the exact method of inheritance is unknown. At Mills River Doodles our priority is always the health and temperament of the dog, but we are working towards a lineage in our Aussiedoodle generations that continue to produce Blue eyes in the litters. We are very excited when we find an Aussie Mama (or sire) that has a strong parentage of BET (Blue Eyed Tri's). In our experience with First generation Aussiedoodles the chances of some gorgeous blue eyes are high.

Aussiedoodle puppy with Blue Eyes
Blue Eyed Red Merle Aussiedoodle

There are two "types" of Blue eyes in the Aussiedoodle world. One is from the Merle gene. It happens strictly by chance. It just so "happens" that the "marbling" pattern that dilutes the color of the coat hits the ocular area. In our experience this usually looks like a "marbled eye" or just one eye being blue.

Red Merle Aussiedoodle with marbled eyes
Jasper with his marbled blue eyes from the merle gene

The second type of blue eye in Aussiedoodles is from the BET gene. Although not completely understood, it is inherited and completely separate from the merle gene. It can affect both Merle pups and Solids or Bi/Tris. When this trait is seen it is almost a guarantee that one of the pups parents has one or two blue eyes themselves. At times this gene can be passed and create heterochromia: which is one brown eye and one blue eye. It can also cause a marbled eye and be very similar to the merle effect.

In our experience if a pup is merle and one parent has a strong lineage of the BET gene, their chances of having one or two blue eyes is significantly higher than their solid color littermates.

Blue Eyes can be more light sensitive than other colors. A properly bred Aussiedoodle should have a very low chance of vision problems. It is important to find a breeder than understands the risk and responsibility of breeding the merle gene. It is so important that the parent dogs are health tested and that proper research has been done to limit any vision problems that can be associated with the merle gene. Never purchase an Aussiedoodle pup that has excessive white, especially with pink around its eyes or nose. This can be due to a "Double Merle"- from breeding parents with an unsafe Merle SINE length combination. NOTE: there are some Aussiedoodles that may be cream or white from the E locus genetically (and should have no visual or auditory defects)...these are not double merle and the breeder should be able to prove this with the parents genetics

Again......A solid white or a pup that is heavily white around the ears and head can be indicative of a "double Merle" pup that has limited vision and/or hearing problems. That is a sign of improper breeding of parent dogs. These pups need love and compassion and should be placed in an experienced home at no charge as they very likely could be blind or deaf.

Black and White mini Aussiedoodle in a basket with blue eyes
Blue Eyed Mini Aussiedoodle

If you reach out to us in regards to our pups blue eyes, one of the first things we will discuss with you is that there are no guarantees to final eye color. Australian Shepherd eye colors vary greatly. Most pups are born with a shade of blue eyes. As they age that blue will darken to brown/green/amber or it will continue to lighten to the piecing sky blue that sets the breed apart from the majority of canines. Eye color can continue to change for up to 16 weeks!! This means that even by their go home date at 8-10 weeks of age, their eyes can and do continue to change. In our experience by 6-8 weeks, and depending on parentage, we can give our families a good guess at final eye color BUT it is part of our contract that we can never guarantee final outcome for that individual dog. We have been blessed that our families to date understand the nature of this estimate well, and view the eye color as a bonus and never a necessity.

At Mills River Doodles we continue to educated ourselves in the genetics of the merle gene and the risks and responsibilities it carries in breeding. We test our parent dogs and try our best to make educated decisions on our pairings to produce healthy, sound and beautiful pups.

Continuing our Education:

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