They have the ability to attract your attention.
A Merle Bully looks different from other dogs in many ways, with its unusual coats, robust appearance, and piercing eyes, but what precisely are merle bullies?
Are they well-known? Are they in good health?
Should you acquire one, and, more importantly, should you consider it?
What is a Merle Bully, exactly?
A Merle Bully is an American Bully with the merle gene, which results in a unique pattern of mottled colored patches in the dog’s coat, which can be solid or piebald.
Blue, Red, or Cryptic Merle Bullies are the three types of Merle Bullies.
Merle Bullies are not recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) and have a variety of health issues.
Merle Bullies are genuinely one-of-a-kind canines in so many ways, and I’ll do my best to describe what makes them so special.
What distinguishes them from other Bullies and other dog breeds in general, and why are they the subject of so many debates?
So grab a cup of coffee (or tea, if you prefer) and join me on an adventure into the intriguing world of Merle American Bullies.
What does a Merle Bully look like?
Merle bullies come in a variety of shapes and sizes.
We need to start at the beginning to properly appreciate what makes a Merle Bully so special.
A Merle isn’t exclusive to the bully breed or even the Pitbull family of dogs.
What is the meaning of the Merle Coat Pattern?
A Merle is a non-breed-specific genetic pattern caused by a genetic mutation that can affect the dog’s coat color, eye color, and health.
Merles have mottled spots of color in a solid or piebald coat, as well as blue or odd-colored eyes.
Skin pigment is also affected by the merle gene.
When two merles are bred together, resulting in a double merle, health complications are more common and more severe due to the Merle gene.
As a result, a merle dog should only ever be bred with a dog with a solid coat color.
Later in the article, we’ll go into double merles in further detail.
Merle coats can be found on dogs other than bullies and Pitbulls. Merle coats in Bullies, on the other hand, are quite rare.
Merle dog breeds are dogs with merle coats.
The following are some of the breeds that can carry the merle gene and its characteristics (coat color, eye color, and health issues):
- Australian SHepherd
- Shepherd of the Pyrenees
- Great Danes
- Koolies \Collies
- Shetland Sheepdog
- Catahoula Leopard Dog
- Cardigan (Welsh) Corgi
- Pitbull Terrier of the United States
- English Bulldogs of the Past
- Pomeranian \Poodles
- French Bulldogs
Is a Pitbull considered a Merle Bully?
No, Merle Bullies are not Pitbulls; however, the American Bully is a Pitbull because it was bred from the American Bulldog, English Bulldog, and Old English Bulldog, as well as other bloodlines from breeds such as Mastiffs.
Many people mistake the American Bully for a Pitbull since it is one of four canine breeds that fit under the banner of Pitbull-type dogs.
Is the Merle Coat Accepted by the American Kennel Club (AKC)?
Merle coats are not recognised by the AKC in most dog breeds, with the exception of Leopard Dogs and Border Collies, which have merle coats naturally.
The same is true in the United Kingdom, with the exception of Poodles, which the UKC will no longer accept after 2020.
The AKC accepts only the following dog breeds that have merle genes:
- Australian Shepherd
- Border Collie
- Cardigan Welsh Corgis
- Catahoula Leopard Canine
- Cocker Spaniels
- Rough Collies
- Collies with a Smooth Coat
- Great Danes
- Pyrenean Shepherd
- Shetland Sheepdogs
The AKC does not approve the following Merle Dogs:
- Poodles \Bulldogs
Any designer breeds, including American Staffordshire Terriers (Pitbulls) and Australian Koolies.
What is the significance of Merle Coats on some American Bullies?
Because of the merle gene mutation, an American Bully, like any other dog, might have a merle coat.
The Merle Gene causes the American Bully’s coat pigment to change, giving it a merle pattern.
No two merle bullies will look same because each dog’s Merle Pattern is unique.
Merle Bullies can be bred with both solid-coated and merle dogs, and merle puppies can be born in any instance.
However, a merle dog produced by crossing two merle bullies is known as a double merle and is currently frowned upon in the American Bully Community, but more on that later.
Merle American Bullies’ Characteristics
There are a few distinct features found specifically in American Bullies carrying the merle gene. These are their credentials:
Their coats have a peculiar pattern of muted hues.
Their eyes are usually blue or strangely colored.
Their health problems may be more common and severe, but all other characteristics will remain the same.
They’ll still be strong, protective bullies who will go to any length to safeguard their houses.
They will remain affectionate and friendly to their owners, as well as gentle and patient with children and tiny children.
So, the only major difference between them is their appearance, so let’s go over that in more detail.
What is the hue of their eyes?
Merle American Bullies typically have two blue eyes, but they can also be heterochromatic, which means they have one blue and one brown eye.
Merle American Bullies can have two brown eyes or completely distinct eye colors on rare circumstances.
Blue eyes are considered one of the most distinguishing features of Merle Bullies because they are the most prevalent eye color, however heterochromatic canines with blue and brown eyes have been gaining popularity recently, and not just among American Bullies.
Let’s discuss about the many Merle American Bully breeds now.
Merle American Bullies Come in a Variety of Shapes and Sizes
Merle American Bullies come in three different types, none of which are recognized by the AKC.
These are supposed to be blue, red, and cryptic merles, but they aren’t. Let’s take a short look at each of these and see what they entail:
Bullies of the Red Merle
Don’t be fooled by their name; Red Merles are more tan and black in hue than red.
Their coats can have very dark areas on them. Because red merles are more difficult to make than blue merles, they are more scarce.
Because only a small percentage of the population can produce red merles, this is the case.
Some red merles have no tan marks on their coat yet are nonetheless classified as red merles.
Bullies with blue merle coats
Blue Merles, like red Merles, are not genuinely blue.
This is not surprising, given that there are no blue dogs.
A blue merle is gray with black spots, and their name comes from the fact that their patterns can appear blue-ish under certain lighting situations, earning them this unique moniker.
Blue merles are sometimes mistaken for tricolor bullies because to their similar appearances, and the reverse is also true, although blue merles will have the Merle gene whereas tricolor Bullies will not.
You may read more about Tricolored bullies and how they differ from Merle bullies by clicking here.
Merle American Bullies come in a variety of colors, but blue merle bullies are the most frequent.
Merle Bullies with a Mysterious Past
American Bullies with the merle gene but no coat are known as Cryptic Merles.
Even if they don’t look like Merle bullies, they can pass on the Merle gene to their children.
It’s unclear why they couldn’t show merle patterns if they have the merle gene, but we do know that the merle gene is dominant, meaning that a dog with the gene can only obtain it from a parent who has the gene, and that a dog with the gene will almost certainly pass it on to some of its puppies.
What is the difference between a Double Merle American Bully and a Merle American Bully?
The consequence of breeding two merle American Bullies is a Double merle American Bully.
According to statistics, 25% of the puppies born to two merle parents will be double merles.
Double merles are distinguished by their white coats and have more severe health problems than normal merles, which include deafness and visual impairments.
The genotype MM is found in double Merle dogs, while the genotype Mm is found in single Merle dogs.
Double merle puppy will have mostly white coats and will not look like merles at all.
Their white coats may have a few small merle patches here and there, but not to the same extent as merle dogs.
The merle gene’s marbling or lightening effect, which is twice as pronounced in double merle dogs, is the cause for this.
Merle American Bullies’ Health Problems
Some people believe that breeding double merles is unethical because of the health issues that these dogs face throughout their lives.
Although there is no clear explanation for why double merles appear to have more health problems than other dogs, experts agree that double merle dogs, particularly double merle American Bullies, appear to have more problems and their health problems appear to be more severe.
Their health issues include vision and hearing issues, as well as the possibility of acquiring major health problems later in life. Serious allergies and epilepsy are examples of these conditions.
In order of commonality, here are the health issues that double merle American bullies have:
- Sun sensitivity is a condition in which a person is sensitive to the sun.
- An increased chance of developing skin cancer
- Anomalies of the skeleton
- Abnormalities of the heart (cardiac)
- Anomalies of the reproductive system
Deafness is the most common condition among double merles, and it is caused only by a gene mutation.
Some people believe that because double merles have blue eyes, they are deaf.
This is not the case.
They also don’t have vision problems as a result of their blue eyes; they may have vision problems as a result of the double merle gene, but not as a result of their eye color.
While we’re on the subject of dog myths, merle dogs – and blue-eyed dogs in general – are no more aggressive than dogs with various colored eyes.
Again, the color of one’s eyes has no bearing on any of them.
The UKC (United Kingdom Kennel Club) has outlawed merle-to-merle breeding and will not register any double merles.
Breeders will be discouraged from breeding double merle dogs since they won’t be able to sell the puppies for as much money if they don’t have papers.
The Facts About American Bullies With Double Merles
Merle Double Bullies in the United States have a difficult time.
Because they are so unpopular due to their health issues, some breeders choose to euthanize them after they are born rather than sell them.
Often, the breeder will not even wait to find out whether the dog has any health issues.
They would simply euthanize the newborn puppy as soon as possible, which is one of the worst things I’ve learnt about and must be stopped.
The dog may make it to the shelter on occasion, but the chances of a double merle American bulldog dog being adopted are quite rare.
Because of their health issues, some individuals refer to them as “fatal whites,” although this is a misnomer; lethal whites are horses, not dogs.
Because it’s difficult for new dog owners to tell the difference, some unethical breeders will sell the double merle bulldog as a “albino” pup instead of a double merle.
Other cruel breeders will use the dogs as “baitdogs” in dogfights.
Why do Double Merle American Bullies get such a bad rap?
Breeders handle double merle American Bullies with such severity in order to safeguard their reputation.
Unethical breeders will do anything they can to get rid of double merle dogs as quickly as possible in order to safeguard their reputation and continue to profit from their breeding schemes.
So, why do breeders continue to produce double Merles?
Ignorance and neglect are the simple answers.
Most double merles, at least recently, are the product of two merle dogs mating without the breeder’s knowledge.
They are typically done by accident, which leads to all of the dreadful situations mentioned above.
When a breeder breeds two merle dogs together to produce a few single merle dogs with a unique color, they can sell for a higher price because people still find the coat patterns and coloring appealing, and so when double merles occur – whether the breed knew they would or not – they try to get rid of them as explained earlier.
Regrettably, the practice continues. Unethical breeding techniques are more widespread than we’d like, resulting in a large number of crippled American Bullies who will never have a shot at a happy existence.
How Can We (Or Should We) Stop Merle American Bullies From Being Bred?
As a community, we should oppose unethical Merle American Bully breeding, and the simplest way to do so is to decrease demand and a market for them.
If the breeders are unable to sell their merle American Bullies, they are much more inclined to avoid breeding them in the first place.
To lessen demand, we need to inform as many people as possible about the reality about American Bully Merles, including how they came to be, what causes their distinctive appearance, and what health problems they will face in the future.
We also need to teach people how to tell the difference between albino or uncommon white dogs and double merle dogs, or how to avoid getting both.
The American Kennel Club and the United Kennel Club are working to prevent the breeding of merle dogs, but progress is gradual and insufficient to make a substantial difference.
However, with enough public knowledge, we can put an end to these practices.
The American Dog Breeders Association prohibited the registration of merle puppies in 2005, while the UKC announced plans to prohibit the registration of more merle dogs by 2020, effectively prohibiting all merle breeding in the UK.
Distinction between a Merle and a Brindle
Merle is a coat color that occurs from a lack of pigmentation caused by the merle gene mutation, whereas brindle is a coat pattern rather than a hue.
A brindle coat can be found in almost all dog breeds, but only a handful can have a merle coat.
Dogs can be merle and brindle in theory, but they are quite unusual.
Final Thoughts about Merle Bullies
A Merle American Bully is a distinct and gorgeous dog, however they are unnatural, and the procedures that result in merle bullies are unethical and should be avoided.
Merle Bullies have a difficult life owing to their health issues, and the most of them will not be able to enjoy a regular life like any other dog.
Most Double Merle Bullies will not live to adulthood because breeders will try to get rid of them or because their health difficulties will be too severe for them to thrive on their own.
Educating the public is the most effective strategy to combat unethical breeding techniques, so please talk to your friends and family about it, educate them, or share this post with them.