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Color question: what color does a rose grey start?

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  • Color question: what color does a rose grey start?

    Maybe a dumb question, but what color does a rose grey start out as? A rose grey or do they start out as more of a grey or grey/roan and turn as they grow thru their early years?

    I'm curious because I have a coming 4 yo filly that I got in Dec. She came complete with her winter fuzzies. She's a grey roan. However, her muzzle is distinctly rose colored and she has a blush tint to her coat if you look at her just right. I'm wondering if she might shed out to more of a rose color. I know, I know - I'll find out in a couple months when she loses her winter coat. But my curiousity is getting the better of me. What color does a rose grey start out?

  • #2
    Not sure if this helps but I had a gray mare some years ago who was born a chestnut (I got the baby pictures from breeder). Body coat looked regular gray when I got her at 5ish, but her tail had a clear reddish cast to it for a number of years.
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    • #3
      Ours that went through rose grey stages all started out chestnut or liverish chestnut. Yours will probably look greyer when she sheds out. The ones I've had all went through their rosey stages between 2-3, and by five looked normally grey.

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      • #4
        Rose grey is chestnut greying out. They start chestnut/liver.
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        • #5
          Originally posted by crazy gray horse View Post
          Maybe a dumb question, but what color does a rose grey start out as? A rose grey or do they start out as more of a grey or grey/roan and turn as they grow thru their early years?
          Some shade of chestnut. I suppose it's possible for a darker palomino to look rosey, but all the graying palis I've seen get really dark first - seems to be the cream working on that.

          I'm curious because I have a coming 4 yo filly that I got in Dec. She came complete with her winter fuzzies. She's a grey roan. However, her muzzle is distinctly rose colored and she has a blush tint to her coat if you look at her just right. I'm wondering if she might shed out to more of a rose color. I know, I know - I'll find out in a couple months when she loses her winter coat. But my curiousity is getting the better of me. What color does a rose grey start out?
          Most likely she was born chestnut. Whether she sheds out more pink, or more white, just depends. Some grays i've seen shed to a darker Summer coat, which then progressively lightens, building a lighter Winter coat, and the next Spring is again darker than Winter but lighter than the Spring before.
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          • #6
            Grey progressively retains pigment in the skin rather than putting it into the coat with each hair shed, so each year a grey adds more white hairs and becomes whiter.

            How quickly that progresses and whether dappling also occurs varies widely between individuals. Some may be nearly white as yearlings, while others retain lots of base color until about age 10.

            Most horses described as rose grey are on a chestnut/liver (red) base, although I have seen some bays called that even though their manes were darker.

            True Roan is a different genetic effect than grey roan and does not fade annually, though the winter coat may be lighter and the head, legs and points usually remain base colored (ask welsh breeders).

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            • Original Poster

              #7
              Thank you all for the great information. Very interesting. I can't wait to see what she looks like when she gets her summer coat in. Her legs are black but her back and bum are very roaned out. And of course there is the blush tint to her coat and her rose colored muzzle.

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              • #8
                If her legs are black (what about mane and tail?) then she may have been a very red bay instead.
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                • #9
                  I have both a chesnut going grey and a very red bay going grey---right now the bay is looking to be a rose grey while the chesnut looks---more mottled to my eye (chesnut going grey?). She also has a very large grey patch on the inside of her gaskin that is very different than the rest of her...it looks a bit like a map of Ireland at the moment! My very true seal brown on the other hand is still very very dark charcoal grey---dapple, he is taking his time at age seven. Im thinking he wont be finished turning till he is 9-11. I knew one other seal brown that went grey and at twenty he is still very dark with a very unusual brown muzzle--mealy mouth.
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                  • #10
                    Any color that isn't black can turn into a rose gray. Bay, chestnut, buckskin, etc.
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by JB View Post
                      If her legs are black (what about mane and tail?) then she may have been a very red bay instead.
                      Our small junior was a blood bay who greyed. Here is a pic of him at 4.

                      My now four year old is, I think, a blue roan that is greying. He is decidedly BLUE.

                      My older horse who is now white has a silver dilution which makes him white now - think HiHo Silver "white".

                      Greying sure is interesting.
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                      • #12
                        Both true Rose Greys I have had over a 40 year span were both born Chestnut.

                        The filly was out of a chestnut mare. She stayed Rose hued her whole life, even when aged an flea bitten it was with chestnut flecks.

                        The gelding was by a stallion who threw alot of liver chestnuts. He is 4 now and I have no idea what his color is now sold him last year.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by goodpony View Post
                          She also has a very large grey patch on the inside of her gaskin that is very different than the rest of her...it looks a bit like a map of Ireland at the moment!
                          That may be a Blood Mark.

                          I knew one other seal brown that went grey and at twenty he is still very dark with a very unusual brown muzzle--mealy mouth.
                          Are you sure he was a gray? Extreme Rabicano can make a horse look perpetually graying

                          Originally posted by EqTrainer View Post
                          Our small junior was a blood bay who greyed. Here is a pic of him at 4.
                          Yep, he's still got the red tint on his butt. I think of "rose gray" as different though - to me, they look pink. So, I suppose it all comes down to pictures, since words don't always convey the same image LOL

                          My now four year old is, I think, a blue roan that is greying. He is decidedly BLUE.
                          Dinky? Given his QH side, he could have been roan. It's more likely he was black though. They can be blue/purple in the same way that chestnuts can be pink, when they go through the "roaning" stage of gray as opposed to the dappled stage.

                          My older horse who is now white has a silver dilution which makes him white now - think HiHo Silver "white".
                          I wouldn't be so sure about that Silver isn't very common. What's his breeding? It doesn't even exist in some breeds. Even if he was, and he grayed, the Silver wouldn't be apparent anymore. But some horses do have what's often called the satin gene, which gives them a pearly shimmer. It has to do with the hair shaft being (more) hollow, so light passes through. Think Akhal-Teke

                          Greying sure is interesting.
                          No kidding! Sometimes it's just really obvious what's going on. But especially when you get a dilute (cream or dun) in the mix, it can start doing some REALLY strange things and make you go WTH?
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                          The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

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                          • #14
                            My guy started as a dark bay but went through a definite "rose" grey stage and still retains a lot of reddish brown in his coat (I'm expecting him to end up quite fleabitten, and he has a few patches/blood marks going on though he's still too dark for them to be super noticeable. Maybe in the spring )
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                            • #15
                              Just for fun, I thought I'd post pics of my grey Dutch mare. She was born a dark chestnut and had a rose grey stage around age two. The photos are in order from youngest to most recent.

                              http://i228.photobucket.com/albums/e...IMG_0002-1.jpg
                              http://i228.photobucket.com/albums/e...IMG_0003-1.jpg
                              http://i228.photobucket.com/albums/e...IMG_0004-1.jpg
                              http://i228.photobucket.com/albums/e...rightside2.jpg

                              It's funny to see the way her markings change as well as her color. She used to have socks and a stripe!
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                              • #16
                                We had two rose grey fillies this year ... one was bright bay and the other chestnut.

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                                • #17
                                  Here is a really pink horse
                                  http://i173.photobucket.com/albums/w.../Tetrarchs.jpg
                                  ______________________________
                                  The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

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                                  • #18
                                    I had a stallion who when I bought him as a foal was chestnut. As a yearling and 2 year old he was rose grey, but by the time of his inspections at 3 1/2 he was a decidedly dark steel blue grey with dapples - you would have sworn he was born black. He is now 9 and nearly white bodied with grey mane/tail/points and will eventually go completely pearlescent white like his dam.

                                    My grey mare (same age) was also born chestnut, went rose grey and has stayed that way for the most part through her gradual lightening and dappling, although she too went through a "blue" phase and now is starting to fleabite in a few places.
                                    Liz
                                    Ainninn House Stud
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                                    Co. Westmeath, Ireland

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                                    • #19
                                      It's not uncommon at all for gray to "blacken" a chestnut
                                      ______________________________
                                      The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

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                                      • #20
                                        The junior hunter is definately pink I would love to rename him Think Pink! but I have been overruled on all accounts.

                                        Dinky.. yes, probably a blue roan. Maybe black. He is coming 5 now and his legs are still BLACK as can be and he has hardly greyed at all.

                                        The white horse - it was very obvious when he was young that he had a silver dilution. I'll have to dig out pics sometime to show you. Not so easy to see now that he is old/white/dirty
                                        "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
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                                        The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.

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