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Do Rainbow Dalmatians Actually Exist?

Little rainbow Dalmatian puppy on blue background

People love rainbows, and the idea of rainbow Dalmatians existing seems to get them over the moon. As absurd as it sounds, many believe that these pups are real. But do rainbow Dalmatians actually exist?

Rainbow Dalmatians do not exist, as no dogs are born with rainbow-colored coats. While Dalmatians are often black-spotted, they can also be liver, lemon, and orange-spotted, but never rainbow-colored. The tri-color variation is the rarest kind of Dalmatian; however, its color is not rainbow.

This guide will contain what Dalmatian colors exist in reality, bust the myth about rainbow Dalmatians, and some frequently asked questions. 

Are Rainbow Dalmatians Real?

Not to burst anyone’s bubble, but rainbow Dalmatians, just like unicorns, are not real. In fact, all dogs, Dalmatian or not, are not capable of having rainbow-colored coats. 

It is because the melanin present in dogs consists of only two types. These basic pigments are phaeomelanin (red) and eumelanin (black). Given this, even dilution won’t have the ability to produce rainbow colors.

You can, however, bring a rainbow Dalmatian to life. All you need to do is take your pup to a professional groomer to have them dye spots with different colors on your dogs. Just don’t forget to use dog-friendly, organic dyes. 

Where Did the Myth of Rainbow Dalmatians Come From?

It is unclear where the myth of rainbow Dalmatians came from. However, a 2018 Reddit post containing a photo of two Dals with black and rainbow spots once again sparked controversy on whether they are real or not.

But people seem to know more than believing the existence of rainbow Dals.

The post has just become a meme of sorts, with people making funny comments and some getting excited, then disappointed that such pups don’t really exist. 

The origin of this myth could go further than the relatively recent Reddit photo. Still, what remains true is that natural rainbow Dalmatians do not exist.

Bright, colorful spots may only be possible if it is done artificially.

What Coat Colors Do Dalmatians Have?

Two Dalmatians with different spot colors running on the field

Dalmatians typically have coat colors in white and black and white and liver. The non-standard colors are white and lemon, white and orange, and tri-color.

Albino and patched Dalmatians are considered unacceptable colors. 

In this video, you will see rare types and colors of Dalmatians that are just as breathtaking:

Rare Types Of Dalmatians That Are Too Breathtaking For Words

White and Black

White & black is the most popular color among Dalmatian colors. It has a white base color with dense and evenly distributed black spots across a Dalmatian’s body.

Black is a dominant color and produces mostly black-spotted pups.

White and Liver

The second most common and another accepted color in the breed standard is white and liver. Liver brown spots come from a modified type of black spot. Whereas black is dominant, the liver is a recessive color. 

White and Lemon

One of the non-standard Dalmatian colors is white and lemon, also known as lemon Dally. As such, it is not allowed in conformation shows.

Yellow is the result of a recessive gene that does not produce black or liver colors. 

White and Orange

Characterized by dark lemon spots, the white and orange variation is another rarer color of the breed. Its color is somewhere between brown and dark yellow. 

Like the lemon Dally, the orange Dalmatian is not part of the breed standard.


Tri-colored Dalmatians have a white ground color with spots that come in two colors that’s either black and tan or liver and tan.

These colors, while accepted by the American Kennel Club (AKC), are not allowed to participate in dog shows.

The unacceptable colors are patched and albino Dalmatians. However, the albino Dalmatian is not a color variation.

It is rather a rare condition called albinism, or the absence of pigmentation resulting in a pinkish-tinted coat.

On the other hand, patched Dalmatians have solid masses of black spots that are notably larger than those of a typical Dalmatian.

Still, both albino and patched Dalmatians are barred from shows since they are tagged as faulty.

Albino Dalmatians are more prone to developing health issues. Meanwhile, Dalmatians, regardless of color, will generally have the same appearance, intelligence, and behavior. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Two cute Dalmatian puppies with different coat colors

What Is the Rarest Dalmatian Color?

While all non-standard colors are almost equally rare, the tri-colors are considered the rarest Dalmatian variations.

These pups have tan points in addition to their black or liver spots. These tan-colored spots are often found on their head, chest, neck, or tail.

Compared to the white, black, and tan tri-color Dalmatian, the white, liver, and tan are even rarer variations. Given their rarity, these Dalmatians often cost more.

Other rare coat variations may also arise from Dalmatian mixes, such as the Doberman Dalmatian mix and the Doberman Pit mix. However, these dogs are not considered purebred variants of the Dalmatian breed.

Why Do Dalmatians Turn Pink?

Nicknamed “Dal Crud,” the Dalmatian bronzing skin syndrome is the primary reason Dalmatians turn pink. It is a type of bacterial folliculitis that is exclusively observed in the breed. 

A pup with Dalmatian bronzing skin syndrome has a broad stripe of bronze or pink coloration along its topline. This condition often results in crusty patches, hair loss, and bronzing of the skin.

How Do You Get a Tri-colored Dalmatian?

Genetically, the tri-color variation is the result of the presence of the A(t) gene. A tri-colored Dalmatian carries two copies of the said gene. The same goes with a pup with A(s)A(t) copies.

Typical white and black or liver Dalmatians are carriers of A(s)A(s), which produce only black or liver-colored spots. 

Final Thoughts

Rainbows represent happiness and hope. Perhaps that’s why rainbow Dalmatians or rainbow dogs don’t exist since their presence alone is enough to exude such emotions.

Try as you may, you won’t find a natural rainbow Dalmatian. 

However, as much as “you can create your own rainbows every day,” you can also design your own multicolored pooch by painting it pet-safe colorful spots. 

Or you can embrace your Dalmatian the way it is — black, liver, lemon, or tri-colored. After all, rainbow Dalmatian or not, dogs bring sunshine and rainbows wherever they go. 

What’s your take on this mysterious rainbow-colored pooch? Would you like to have a rainbow dog in real life? Let us know what you think about the rainbow Dalmatian in the comments below.