As always patterns are just the icing on the GSD cake!!

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Blue long coat with Panda pattern

Another example of 2 patterns at once, this one has color and 2 patterns.  Blue = color Solid = pattern & Panda = pattern

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How did Panda pattern happen?

 Panda German Shepherd Information   

I had never heard the term Panda German Shepherd much less know of their existence until my best friend Dawn got one.  
“Panda” is the name of the gene that is the result of a spontaneous mutation that occurred in one puppy born to a pair of German Shepherds here in the US in the fall of the year 2000. Her name was Franka.  
I use the term Panda to describe my AKC registered German Shepherd named Dare as he has the mutated “Panda” gene, not to be confused with the recessive S locus that causes white spotting in the German Shepherd breed.  The original pair of German Shepherds that produced the one puppy with this white pattern and blue eyes had their DNA studied by UC Davis.  The DNA of the parents and the litter were authenticated as being from their “Pedigreed” parents.  Basically proving that the litter is from it’s documented parents and that a ’traveling salesman’ is not the culprit of the puppy with the white markings.  
The Panda Pattern puts white on the face/head, chest, feet, legs, tip of tail much like that of the Collie—however the Panda gene is not related to the gene responsible for the white on a Collie.  It is a dominant gene which means it only takes one parent to reproduce the pattern.  The pattern is secondary to the color and the original pattern of the Dog.  In other words the dog will still be either; black/tan, blue/tan, liver/tan, blue sable, liver/sable, sable, or solid blue, solid liver, solid black, etc... the dog with the Panda Pattern.  Repeating the Panda pattern does not interfere with any basic color or pattern and is secondary to it’s color and pattern. My first Panda GSD 'Dare' is a direct descendant of the Original Panda Frankie (Lewcinkas Franka Vom Phenom).  Frankie is my German Shepherd Dare’s Great Great Grandmother. 

 The Panda I have in my program now is 'K9 Pines Chocolate Puddin' (liver without tan with the panda pattern).  Puddin was born here and lived with another breeder for a couple of years and is now back home.  He is a big sweet always wants to be right with me Chocolate Teddy bear.  
He is a 7th generation GSD with the Panda pattern.  Currently being bred to a few select girls.  His photo is below sitting facing the camera.

I have onwed several Panda Patterned GSD over the years and find that many like the white markings as it helps the breed to have a sweeter expression so to speak.  Some people are afraid of GSD visually, however with the white pattern on them their appear less intimidating.  Some that do therapy work prefer the softer look that the white pattern provides.  
Others cant have a GSD as per insurance reasons but can have mixes,  by the GSD having the white pattern insurance companies can be told they are a 'mix' .  Even though we know they are not.  After all we know that a good GSD will deter and even prevent breaking and entering more times than being an actual Shame on insurance companies for preventing families that want to keep their things and family safe.  
              

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Patterns much like colors are just the icing on the GSD cake

(Photo to the left is K9Pines Chocolate Puddin, read more about him above).


The Panda gene does not change any internal workings of the GSD, it is merly a white pattern over the color that would normally be there if this gene were not present.  To date (17 years after the first Panda was born) there are no health issues (visual/hearing/skin ect...) that affect GSD that have the Panda gene.  Any health issues that crop up are or would be due to anything other than the Panda gene itself.  Panda's can have one blue eye, partial China eyes, 2 blue eyes or traditional colored eyes that accompany the actual coat color of the GSD.   


UCDavis currently has a test on the market that is available to the public now to see if what you have had born in your litter is affected by the Panda gene or the white spotting gene.  My recommendation is to test for the recessive white spotting gene and the Panda gene, so that you will know which gene caused the white spotting on your dog.  So when you sell your puppy you advertise it for what it is and not as something it is not (Panda).  Remember all Panda's are related as they stem from one dog named Franka).  The test a simple cheek swab.  For more information:http://www.vgl.ucdavis.edu/services/dog/GermanShepherdPanda.php