THE AUSTRALIAN SHEPHERD
The Australian Shepherd is widely known for the variation in colors. This variation in colors creates a unique dog, and is half the charm of the breed.
There are 2 main coat colors for the Australian Shepherd, Black and Red. The breed also has the merle gene which may act on the base color, giving us the Blue Merle and Red Merle. Dogs may or may not also have white and/or tan trim. Trim is only allowed in certain areas. This gives us the possibility of 16 color combinations. When a dog has 2 color combinations it is referred to as a Bi-color. If it has all 3 it is a Tri-Color.
The color combinations are:
Solid Black / Black with White / Black with Tan / Black with White and Tan
Solid Red / Red with White / Red with Tan / Red with White and Tan
Blue Merle / Blue Merle with White / Blue Merle with Tan / Blue Merle with White and Tan
Red Merle / Red Merle with White / Red Merle with Tan / Red Merle with White and Tan
All color combinations are correct for the breed, and acceptable for the show ring. Breeders should not charge a price difference between the colors. The only exception being if the dog is considered to be a 'mis-mark' and have too much white trim. In these cases some breeders may reduce the price of such puppies. White should not dominate on the head, and may appear on the muzzle and as a blaze. Eyes and ears should be surrounded by color. White is also acceptable as a full or part collar, not to exceed past the point of withers at the hair root. On the Chest, front legs, and back legs, not extending above the hock joint.
Aussies typically have either Brown, Amber or Blue eyes. They may have a mixture of Blue and Bown/Amber in one eye, they can also have different colored eyes. . All of which are acceptable. Breeders should not charge a price difference according to eye color.