Explore the Colors and Patterns of Lhasa Apso’s Coat

Lhasa Apso dogs have been cherished companions for centuries, thanks in large part to their distinctive coat. These small dogs have a long and flowing coat that is full of color and pattern, making them a fascinating breed to explore. However, with so many variations in texture, color, and design, understanding the intricacies of their coat can be overwhelming for pet owners. In this article, we will dive into the world of Lhasa Apso coat variations and help you explore the different colors, patterns, grooming needs, and tips to choose the best coat for your furry friend.

Lhasa Apso Coat Basics

Lhasa Apso Coat Basics
The Lhasa Apso is a beautiful breed of dog that is easily recognizable by its long, flowing coat. However, to truly understand the beauty of a Lhasa Apso’s coat, it’s important to know the basics. What makes up their coat? What types of hair do they have? What are the different colors and patterns that their coat can have? In this section, we’ll answer these questions and more to help you better understand the Lhasa Apso’s coat. For more information about Lhasa Apso coat care, check out our Lhasa Apso coat care tips.

The Anatomy of Lhasa Apso’s Coat

The Lhasa Apso’s coat has a complex anatomy that plays an important role in providing protection against various weather conditions. The coat consists of two distinctive layers – an outer layer known as guard hairs and an undercoat layer made of fine, soft hair. The guard hairs protect the Apso’s skin from dirt and moisture, while the undercoat provides insulation and warmth.

The guard hair: is the outer layer of the coat and provides protection from the sun’s harmful rays, dirt, and moisture. The hair is long, straight, and coarse to the touch. They are uniformly distributed across the dog’s body, with longer guard hairs on top of the back and shorter ones on the legs and underbelly. To protect the dog’s sensitive skin from harmful UVA and UVB radiation, guard hairs grow longer in the areas where the dog’s skin is exposed to the sun.

The undercoat: is the soft, fine hair that grows underneath the guard hairs. This coat is made up of a dense, fluffy layer of hair that provides warmth and insulation during the cold winter months. The undercoat also helps regulate the dog’s body temperature by trapping air close to the skin.

It is important to note that the double-coated nature of Lhasa Apsos’ coat makes shedding a big issue. Pet owners need to groom their pets regularly to prevent matting and tangling of hair. In case of matting, use the right grooming tool to release the knots and untangle the hair, such as slicker brush, grooming scissors or dematting rake.

Regular grooming: helps remove dirt, debris, dead hair, and tangles from your Lhasa Apso’s coat. Maintaining a proper grooming schedule and investing in good grooming tools can help you achieve the best results for your Lhasa Apso.

The Lhasa Apso’s coat is an essential part of its anatomy that requires proper care and attention. Regular grooming with suitable brushes and combs will help prevent matting, shedding and damage to the coat, and promote a healthy and shiny look. You can read more on how to groom Lhasa Apso’s coat in our article about grooming tips.

Types of Hair in Lhasa Apso’s Coat

When it comes to Lhasa Apso’s coats, there are two main types of hair that make up their coats. These are:

  • Outer Coat: This is the longer and thicker hair that covers the Lhasa Apso’s body. This hair protects the breed from harsh weather conditions, keeping them warm during the colder days.
  • Undercoat: This is the shorter and softer hair that grows close to a Lhasa Apso’s skin. Its main function is to protect Lhasa Apso from the sun’s heat and insulate them from the cold.

Both types of hair in Lhasa Apso’s coat are essential for their appearance and health. Their unique coat keeps them comfortable in any weather, warm in the cold, and shaded in the heat. The outer coat of Lhasa Apso is also less prone to tangling and matting, allowing the breed to maintain their long and furry coat with ease.

When it comes to grooming, it is essential to pay attention to both the outer coat and undercoat. As Lhasa Apso has a double coat, it is recommended to use a dual-sided comb to remove any tangles, knots and dead undercoat fur. You can read more about Lhasa Apso’s double coat and its characteristics in one of our previous articles.

Colors of Lhasa Apso’s Coat

Colors Of Lhasa Apso'S Coat
As we’ve learned in the previous section, Lhasa Apso’s coat can be quite complex. However, one of the most noticeable features of their coat is its color. The Lhasa Apso breed can have a variety of different coat colors that are both intriguing and unique. From solid colors to multi-color patterns, understanding the range of color options can help you determine which Lhasa Apso is right for you. Before we dive into the different coat colors, be sure to review the types of hair in their coat to get a full understanding of how their coat is built.

Solid Colors

Lhasa Apso’s Coat comes in a variety of solid colors, which can be divided into two categories – lighter and darker shades. Lighter shades include cream, white, and blonde, while darker shades consist of black, grey, silver, and brown.

Cream is a pale, ivory-like color that is considered a standard color for Lhasa Apso. It is a popular choice because it complements the breed’s traditional and elegant appearance. White and blonde are also well-liked and create a striking contrast against the breed’s dark eyes.

Black is another popular color and is most commonly used to create a saddle pattern. Grey is typically seen as a light silvery color but can also be found in a darker shade, known as “blue.” Silver, on the other hand, is a lighter shade with a shimmering quality that gives the coat a luxurious appearance. Brown, ranging from light beige to dark chocolate, is considered a rare color and is highly sought after.

When choosing a solid color for your Lhasa Apso, it’s important to consider the color contrast with their eyes and nose. For example, black and silver coats often pair well with dogs with dark eyes and noses, while lighter colors such as cream or white may not be as complementary.

Ultimately, the choice of solid color comes down to personal preference and the Lhasa Apso’s unique appearance. Whether you prefer a light or dark shade, a solid-colored coat is sure to draw attention and accentuate the breed’s natural beauty.

Multi-Color Patterns

When it comes to multi-color patterns, Lhasa Apsos have a lot of interesting and unique combinations. These patterns occur when there are two or more colors present in the coat, and it results in a striking and eye-catching look that is sure to turn heads. Here are some of the most common multi-color patterns you may find in Lhasa Apso’s coat:

Multi-Color PatternDescription
Black and WhiteA classic and timeless combination, black and white is a popular choice for Lhasa Apso owners. The stark contrast between the two colors creates a bold and striking look.
Gold and WhiteAnother popular combination, gold and white provides a softer and more delicate look than black and white. This combination is especially striking in a long, flowing coat.
Black, White, and BrownThis combination adds a hint of warmth to the classic black and white combination by introducing a light brown. The result is a cozy and inviting look that is perfect for the winter months.
Gray, White, and BlackThis striking combination blends three cool tones together, resulting in a unique and eye-catching look that is sure to stand out. This combination works especially well in a shorter, more structured coat.
Tan, Black, and WhiteThis combination adds warmth and depth to the classic black and white combination by introducing a rich tan. This look is perfect for an autumnal walk in the park.

With so many possible combinations, it can be hard to choose which multi-color pattern is right for your Lhasa Apso. To choose the perfect combination, consider your dog’s personality and the environment in which you will spend the most time together. Whether you choose a classic black and white or a more unique gray, white, and black combination, your Lhasa Apso is sure to turn heads with their stunning coat.

Tips for Choosing Color

When it comes to choosing the color of your Lhasa Apso’s coat, there are several factors to consider. One important thing to keep in mind is the coloration of your dog’s nose, eyes, and lips. These features can help inform the color choice for your Lhasa Apso’s coat. Another factor is your personal preference and sense of style. Some people prefer a traditional solid color for their dog’s coat, while others like a more unique, multicolored pattern.

To help make your decision easier, we’ve put together a table of some of the most popular Lhasa Apso coat colors and their descriptions:

BlackA solid black coat with no other colors.
WhiteA solid white coat with no other colors.
BrownA solid brown coat with no other colors.
GoldA light to medium shade of gold, often with black tips on the hairs.
CreamA pale shade of yellow or off-white.
RedA vibrant, warm shade of red.
GrayA medium to dark shade of gray.
SableA mix of black and brown hairs, often with a red undercoat.

Remember, the color of your Lhasa Apso’s coat is just one aspect of their appearance. It’s important to also consider their personality, health, and grooming requirements when choosing a dog. Don’t be afraid to consult with a breeder or veterinarian if you have any questions or concerns about your Lhasa Apso’s coat color or overall care.

Patterns of Lhasa Apso’s Coat

Patterns Of Lhasa Apso'S Coat
As if the wide range of colors wasn’t enough to make Lhasa Apso’s coat unique, the breed also has several distinctive patterns. From the striking saddle pattern to the less common merle pattern, there are several patterns to choose from when it comes to your furry friend’s coat. Let’s take a closer look at some of the most common patterns found in Lhasa Apso’s coat and get tips on choosing the best one for your pet.

Saddle Pattern

One of the most unique patterns found in Lhasa Apso’s coat is the saddle pattern. This pattern is characterized by a dark area of fur along the spine that is shaped like a saddle, while the rest of the body usually has a lighter-colored fur. It’s quite a striking pattern and can vary in intensity and size.

Typically, the saddle pattern is found in black, white, or brown Lhasa Apso’s. The pattern can range from just a small patch to a larger area that covers the entire back. This pattern is caused by the presence of the agouti gene, which affects the distribution of color in the fur.

If you’re looking to adopt a Lhasa Apso with a saddle pattern, it’s essential to consider the color of the fur as well. Black and white saddle patterned Lhasa Apsos tend to be more striking, while brown ones tend to have a subtler look.

When it comes to grooming a Lhasa Apso with a saddle pattern, you’ll need to make sure that you brush their fur regularly. This is especially important in the darker areas, as the fur is more prone to matting. Using a slicker brush will be helpful in removing any tangles and matting from the fur.

It’s also important to keep in mind that the saddle pattern is unique, and each dog will have a slightly different variation of it. So, if you’re looking for a Lhasa Apso with a saddle pattern, keep an open mind and look for the variation that appeals to you the most.

To sum it up, the saddle pattern in Lhasa Apso’s coat is undoubtedly an attention-grabbing pattern that will make your dog stand out. When adopting a Lhasa Apso with a saddle pattern, you should consider the color of the fur as well. Grooming is essential as well, and you’ll need to brush your Lhasa Apso regularly, paying close attention to any matting or tangles, especially in the darker areas. Keep in mind that each dog’s saddle pattern is unique, and embrace the variations in this striking pattern.

Brindle Pattern

The brindle pattern is a beautiful and unique color pattern found in Lhasa Apso’s coat. This pattern is characterized by irregular stripes of colors that are intermixed with each other. The base color of the coat is usually lighter, and the stripes can be any color from black to brown or even gold. The color of the stripes can vary in intensity and thickness, creating a beautiful and intricate design.

Brindle Pattern Colors:

  • Golden Brindle
  • Black Brindle
  • Red Brindle
  • Chocolate Brindle

The brindle pattern is a genetic trait that is inherited from the Lhasa Apso’s parents. Since this pattern is recessive, it may not always appear in every litter. It is important to note that the brindle pattern is not a separate color, but rather a pattern that is found in different colors.

Unique Brindle Characteristics:

  • The stripes of the brindle pattern are usually irregular in shape and size, giving each dog a unique look.
  • The stripes of the brindle pattern can be thick or thin, creating different appearances.
  • The base color of the coat can vary, from light colors such as white and cream to darker colors such as black or chocolate.
  • The brindle pattern can appear anywhere on the coat, including the face, legs, and tail.

If you are interested in owning a Lhasa Apso with a brindle pattern, it is important to consult with a reputable breeder. Not all breeding lines may carry the recessive gene for the brindle pattern, and it may take some time to find the right puppy.

Tips for Taking Care of Lhasa Apso with Brindle Pattern:

  • Grooming: Regular grooming, including brushing and bathing, is essential to maintain the health and appearance of a Lhasa Apso with a brindle pattern.
  • Dental Care: Dental hygiene should be a top priority for any Lhasa Apso owner, regardless of their coat pattern.
  • Training: Socialization and training are essential for any puppy, and this is especially true for Lhasa Apsos with a brindle pattern.

The brindle pattern is a unique and beautiful characteristic of the Lhasa Apso’s coat. Whether you are looking for a new puppy or already own a Lhasa Apso, taking care of their coat and health should always be a top priority.

Piebald Pattern

The piebald pattern on a Lhasa Apso’s coat is a visually striking and unique combination of colors. Piebald Lhasa Apsos have a base color that is predominantly white, with patches of another color throughout. The patches can come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and can be located anywhere on the body.

Color combinations: Piebald Lhasa Apsos can have a range of color combinations, including black and white, brown and white, and even silver and white. One of the most common color combinations for this pattern is black and white, which creates a high contrast and eye-catching coat.

Pattern irregularity: One thing that sets piebald Lhasa Apsos apart from other varieties is the irregularity of the pattern. No two piebald coats are exactly the same, which makes them all the more fascinating to observe. Some Lhasa Apsos may have large patches of color, while others may have small spots that are only visible up close.

Genetic basis: Piebald coloring is the result of a genetic mutation that affects the distribution of pigment in the hair follicles. The mutation causes the hair to grow without any pigment, resulting in the white patches. Piebald Lhasa Apsos are born with this unique pattern, and it remains with them throughout their lives.

Grooming considerations: In terms of grooming, it’s important to pay close attention to the areas where the white patches are located. These areas can sometimes become stained or discolored, especially if the Lhasa Apso spends a lot of time outdoors. Using a good-quality pet shampoo and brushing frequently can help keep the coat looking clean and vibrant.

The piebald pattern is a fascinating and beautiful aspect of the Lhasa Apso’s coat. Whether you’re a prospective owner, a groomer, or simply a lover of dogs, taking the time to appreciate the unique qualities of piebald Lhasa Apsos is well worth it.

Merle Pattern

The merle pattern in a Lhasa Apso’s coat is characterized by a mottled, uneven mixture of two or more colors. This pattern usually appears as a blue or silver base color with black or gray patches throughout the coat, although other color combinations are possible. If you’re looking for a unique, eye-catching coat, the merle pattern might be the perfect choice for your Lhasa Apso.


  • The merle pattern is visually striking and sure to turn heads.
  • Merle Lhasa Apsos tend to be relatively rare and sought after by breed enthusiasts.
  • The variation in color can help to camouflage minor imperfections or inconsistencies in the coat.


  • Merle Lhasa Apsos are more prone to certain health issues, such as hearing and vision problems, than dogs without the merle gene. It’s important to only work with reputable breeders who prioritize the health of their animals.
  • Merle Lhasa Apsos may be more difficult to groom and maintain due to their unique coat patterns.
  • Because the merle gene is dominant, breeders need to be careful not to breed two merle dogs together, as this can result in puppies with health problems.


  • When choosing a Lhasa Apso with a merle coat, it’s important to find a reputable breeder who has health tested their animals and can provide information on the genetic history of the dog’s parents and grandparents.
  • The merle pattern can add a unique and striking element to your Lhasa Apso’s coat, but it’s important to make sure that this is not the only reason you are choosing this pattern. Remember that the health and well-being of your dog should be your top priority.
  • If you choose a Lhasa Apso with a merle coat, be prepared for potential health issues and make sure to keep up with regular vet checks and grooming appointments.

The merle pattern is a visually stunning choice for a Lhasa Apso’s coat, but it’s important to consider the potential health risks and make sure that you’re working with a reputable breeder who prioritizes the health of their animals.

Tip for Choosing Pattern

When it comes to choosing a pattern for your Lhasa Apso’s coat, the options can be overwhelming. Consider the following tips to help you make a decision:

Consider your dog’s personalityIs your Lhasa Apso outgoing and playful or more reserved and sophisticated? Choose a pattern that reflects their unique personality.
Think about the climateIf you live in a hot climate, a lighter color or a pattern with less hair in certain areas may help keep your Lhasa Apso cool. In colder climates, a thicker coat or a pattern with more hair may be beneficial.
Look at your dog’s conformationThe pattern of your Lhasa Apso’s coat can accentuate or detract from their physical features. If your dog has a broad chest, a saddle pattern may highlight this. If they have a shorter back, a brindle or piebald pattern can elongate their appearance.
Consider grooming demandsCertain patterns may require more grooming maintenance than others. For example, a merle pattern may have more stray hairs or require more frequent trips to the groomer to maintain its shape.

By keeping these tips in mind, you can make an informed decision when choosing a pattern for your Lhasa Apso’s coat. Remember, the most important factor is to choose a pattern that you and your furry friend both love!

Grooming Lhasa Apso’s Coat

Taking care of your Lhasa Apso’s coat is an essential part of their overall health and well-being. This beautiful breed is known for their long, flowing coats that require a considerable amount of maintenance to keep looking their best. Proper grooming not only helps prevent matting and tangles but also ensures that your dog is clean, comfortable, and free of skin irritations. In this section, we will explore the various grooming tools and techniques necessary to keep your Lhasa Apso’s coat in top condition. So, let’s get started!

Grooming Tools

When it comes to grooming your Lhasa Apso’s coat, having the right tools is essential. Here are some of the must-have grooming tools that you should have in your arsenal:

  • Pin Brush: A pin brush is a great tool for removing any mats or tangles in your dog’s coat, as well as for general brushing. Be sure to choose a brush with long, sturdy pins.
  • Slicker Brush: A slicker brush is another great option for removing tangles and mats, especially in areas where your pin brush can’t reach. Look for a brush with short, fine wires.
  • Comb: A comb is a useful tool for double-checking that all tangles and mats have been removed. Use a comb with both wide and narrow teeth to get through all layers of the coat.
  • Clippers: Clippers are essential for trimming your Lhasa Apso’s coat, especially around the feet and face. Look for clippers that are specifically designed for pet grooming, with adjustable blades for different hair lengths.
  • Nail Clippers: Keeping your dog’s nails trimmed is important for their overall health and comfort. Choose a pair of nail clippers that are the right size for your dog, and be sure to trim only the tips of the nails.

Having these grooming tools on hand will make the process of grooming your Lhasa Apso’s coat much easier and more enjoyable for both you and your furry friend. Remember to always be gentle and patient when grooming your dog, and to use positive reinforcement to encourage good behavior.

Important grooming tips

To keep your Lhasa Apso’s coat looking its best, here are some important grooming tips that you should follow:

Grooming TipDescription
Regular brushing Use a slicker brush or comb to remove tangles and mats from your Lhasa Apso’s coat. This is especially important for dogs with longer hair, as tangles can lead to discomfort and even skin infections. Brush your Lhasa Apso at least once a week, but daily brushing is optimal.
Bathing Lhasa Apsos do not need to be bathed frequently, as their coats have a natural oil that helps keep them clean. However, occasional baths are necessary to keep the coat looking fresh and to remove any dirt and debris that may have accumulated. Use a shampoo specifically formulated for dogs and avoid getting water and soap in the eyes and ears.
Trimming Lhasa Apso’s hair grows continuously and can become quite long and unruly if not trimmed regularly. Trimming the hair around the ears, eyes, and paws can help your dog see better, avoid irritation, and move around more comfortably. Have a professional groomer do the trimming, or learn to do it yourself with the appropriate tools and techniques.
Cleaning the ears Lhasa Apsos are prone to ear infections, so it’s important to clean their ears regularly. Use a soft cloth or cotton ball and an ear cleaning solution recommended by your vet to gently wipe the inside of the ear flap and canal. Avoid using cotton swabs, as they can damage the ear canal and push wax deeper inside. Check your Lhasa Apso’s ears regularly for any signs of inflammation or discharge and consult with your vet if you have any concerns.
Caring for the eyes Lhasa Apsos have long hair around their eyes that can cause irritation and eye infections if not kept clean. Use a damp cloth to gently wipe away any discharge or debris and trim the hair around the eyes regularly to prevent it from poking the eyes. If you notice any redness, swelling, or discharge from the eyes, consult with your vet as soon as possible.
Trimming the nails Overgrown nails can cause discomfort and even pain when the dog walks or runs. Trim your Lhasa Apso’s nails regularly with a sharp nail clipper or grinder. Be careful not to cut the quick, which is the blood vessel and nerve inside the nail. If you’re unsure how to trim your dog’s nails, consult with a professional groomer or vet.

By following these important grooming tips, you can help your Lhasa Apso remain happy, healthy, and looking gorgeous. Regular grooming can also be a great bonding experience between you and your furry friend.

Grooming Schedule

Maintaining a proper grooming schedule is crucial to keeping a Lhasa Apso’s coat in the best condition. As a breed with a thick and long coat, they require regular grooming to prevent matting and tangling. Here is an example of a weekly grooming schedule to follow for your furry friend:

DayGrooming Tasks
MondayBrushing: Start the week off with a thorough brushing using a slicker brush to remove any tangles or matting that may have occurred over the weekend. This will help to prevent any further matting or tangling during the week.
TuesdayNail Trimming: Check your Lhasa Apso’s nails and trim them if necessary. Be sure to use proper techniques and tools to avoid hurting your dog’s paws.
WednesdayBathing: Give your Lhasa Apso a bath using a dog shampoo that won’t irritate its skin. Be sure to rinse thoroughly and dry well, as wet fur can easily become matted.
ThursdayTrimming: Use scissors to trim around the dog’s eyes, ears, and paws. Pay close attention to the fur around the eyes, as it can irritate your dog’s vision if left too long.
FridayBrushing: Give your dog another thorough brushing to make sure any remaining tangles or matting are removed.
SaturdayNail Trimming: Check your Lhasa Apso’s nails again and trim them if necessary.
SundayRest and Inspection: Take a break from grooming tasks and simply inspect your dog’s coat for any issues or problem areas. This is a great opportunity to bond with your furry friend and show them some love and attention.

Following a grooming schedule like this will help keep your Lhasa Apso’s coat clean, healthy, and tangle-free. Don’t forget to reward your furry friend with treats and affection during and after each grooming session to reinforce positive behavior.


In conclusion, Lhasa Apso’s coat is a fascinating and integral part of their unique appearance. Understanding the anatomy and different types of hair in their coat is important in maintaining proper grooming and care. The variety of colors and patterns also adds to their individuality, and it’s important to consider these factors when choosing a Lhasa Apso as a pet. Grooming their coat is a crucial aspect of their care, and consistent grooming with the right tools and schedule can ensure their coat remains healthy and soft. Whether you’re a longtime Lhasa Apso owner or considering adding one to your family, taking the time to appreciate and care for their coat will only enhance your love and appreciation for this wonderful breed.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the texture of a Lhasa Apso’s coat?

The texture of a Lhasa Apso’s coat can vary depending on the type of hair it has. It can be straight, wavy, or curly, and is usually dense and heavy.

How often should I groom my Lhasa Apso’s coat?

Lhasa Apsos should be groomed at least once a week, but ideally every other day to prevent matting and tangling of the hair.

Are there any health concerns associated with Lhasa Apso’s coat?

Yes, Lhasa Apsos are prone to skin allergies and infections, which can be aggravated if their coat is not properly groomed and maintained.

What is the most common color of a Lhasa Apso’s coat?

The most common color for a Lhasa Apso’s coat is gold, followed by cream, black, and brown.

What is the saddle pattern in Lhasa Apso’s coat?

The saddle pattern is a darker patch of hair that runs along the spine of the Lhasa Apso’s coat, resembling a saddle. This is a common pattern in the breed.

Will my Lhasa Apso’s coat change color as it ages?

Yes, it is common for the coat color to change as the Lhasa Apso ages. For example, a black Lhasa Apso may develop white or gray hairs as it gets older.

Can the brindle pattern occur in any color of Lhasa Apso’s coat?

Yes, the brindle pattern can occur in any color of Lhasa Apso’s coat, but it is most commonly seen in black or brown coats.

What are some grooming tools that I will need for my Lhasa Apso’s coat?

You will need a slicker brush, metal comb, grooming scissors, and clippers (if you plan on giving your Lhasa Apso a shorter haircut).

Can I give my Lhasa Apso a haircut at home?

It is possible to give your Lhasa Apso a haircut at home, but it is recommended to have it done by a professional groomer to ensure a clean and safe cut.

What should I do if I notice any unusual changes or problems with my Lhasa Apso’s coat?

If you notice any unusual changes or problems with your Lhasa Apso’s coat, such as excessive shedding, bald spots, or skin irritations, it is important to bring it to the attention of a veterinarian or professional groomer.


Britta Thygesen

Britta Thygesen

A passionate dog owner and a full-time certified dog trainer. Aspires to make DogCareHacks a go-to place for all the doggo info. Shares personal experience and professional knowledge.

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