Para Ana . . .
O Dogue Merle
Como Escolher um Filhote
Padrão da Raça FCI/CBKC
Videos Educacionais AKC
Segredos do Pedigree
Upponny in Doggerrland
O Romance: Fritz&Maxim
Filhotes da Maxim
Filhos de Maxim
Filhotes Disponíveis
Filhotes Internacionais
Para Quem é o Dogue?
Do que é que eles gostam...
Dogues Aprendem a Amar
Orelhas do Dogue Alemão
As Cores do Dogue Alemão
O Dogue Plaqueado
The Piebald Dane
Linhagens do Dogue Preto
Salve o Merle
O Merle na Reprodução
O que os Merles têm a dizer...
Regra Acasalamento GDCA
Regra Acasalamento CBKC
Displasia Coxofemoral
Cuidando & Educando
Cama, Mesa & Acessórios
Links: Videos Legais

“This  is  what  the  LORD says:  ‘Let not the wise boast of their wisdom or  the strong  boast  of their strength  or  the  rich  boast of  their  riches,  but let those who boast boast about this:  that they  understand  and   know  me,  that  I  am  the  LORD,  who  exercises  kindness,  justice  and righteousness   on   earth,   for   in   these  I  delight,’  declares   the   LORD.”  Jeremiah  9: 23 - 24

                                                    By Monica  Reifegerste

Vozdukh Vremeni Aljoscha Mladshiy

         Vozdukh Vremeni Aljoscha Mladshiy - Great Dane RU - BigDogs. Ru

On  this  page  we  intend to clarify some basic concepts about the Great Dane whose color  and coat pattern as described in the official German standard  of  the Deutsche  Doggen Club  (DDC) is called  PLATTENHUND and  in  Brazil  is  best   known  as  the  PLAQUEADO.

It  is  not  our  goal,  nor  our  place  to  discuss genetic  aspects of this color pattern, but only to clarify the most commonly presented phenotypical characteristics, remembering that  phenotype refers to the visible characteristics of an individual, which are defined by the expression of the genotype that is,  by its hereditary  assets. Nevertheless, we will refer to some studies of genetic factors  and  present  links  to  them  to  facilitate  access  for  those  who  are interested  in  more information  about  the  issue.     

DDC    Deutscher Doggen Club - Great Dane Club of Germany

FCI      Fédération Cynologique Internationale

CBKC Confederação Brasileira de Cinofilia   -  Brazilian Confederation of Kennel Clubs  


The  PIEBALDS  are   part  of   the  Harlequin  and   Black  Variety,  as   we  can  see  by  reading the  description  of   the  colors  established  in the breed standard of the DDC, which have been endorsed  by  the  FCI  and  the CBKC.            


The  German club DDC  as the FCI  and  CBKC  present  five  initial  color  standards,  which  are divided  into  three  independent  varieties:

- HARLEQUIN &  BLACK ---- ( including  BLACK-MANTLE  and  BLACK-PIEBALD)      
- BLUE    --------------------------- ( including the BLUE-BRED BLACKS )*

*(See in:  DDC -  Information - Zuchtordnung - II Zuchtferfahren  - 2º Paragraph)

The  Breed Standard  of  the  DDC (which is endorsed, translated and published by the  FCI  and CBKC), concerning  the  definition  and  description  of  the  BLACK  color  and  its variations is as follows:   

“BLACK :  Jet black,  white  markings  permitted.  Included  here are « Manteltiger » in which the black covers the body like a coat (“mantel”) or blanket and  muzzle, throat, chest, belly,  legs and tip  of  tail  may  be  white.  Also  dogs  with basic white colour and large black patches so called ‘Plattenhunde’.”  (FCI translation) 

See in: FCI - Fédération Cynologique Internationale – Standards & Nomenclature –  Group 2 – Section 2 :  Molossoid  breeds  -   5. Germany  -  Deutsche Dogge (235) (Great Dane) – English Version: www.fci.be/uploaded_files/235gb2002_en.doc       


In the original text of the DDC Breed Standad, the German word  used  to describe  the so-called “patches”  found  on  the  Piebald  danes  is  “Platten”,  as we will see below:        

Original text in German/ DDC:
“... so wie Doggen mit weißer Grundfarbe und großen schwarzen Platten (Plattenhunde).”

The term  “PATCHES”  was  not  correctly  used  or  properly  explained  in  the  Portuguese and English  (FCI)   translations,   because   they   usually  have  an  irregular  format,  as  occurs   in HARLEQUINS  danes.

The  German  term “Platten”   is  a  noun  that  in  this  context  is also used to signify “patches”,  although  the  term is more specific in German. These “patches” have rounded and well-defined borders, giving  them  a  regular,  rounded  or  oval  shape,  which  distinguishes  them  from  the irregular   patches  found  on  the  Harlequins,  whose  term  used  to  define  the  patches  in  the description  of  the  German  Standard   is  the  word  “Flecken”. 


Therefore,  in  German,  there  is  a  difference  between  the  terms   PLATTEN   and   FLECKEN. Platten  means Plates or rounded markings,  and  Flecken  means patches or irregular markings.
See the illustration below:                                                                  

                           HARLEQUIN                                      BLACK-PIEBALD

                             FLECKEN  (patches)                              PLATTEN (plates)

Platten = Plates / Hund  = Dog  /  Hunde, plural = Dogs / Plattenhunde = Plated dogs or Piebalds

A  Piebald Dane  usually  has  one  or  more  plates on a white body and a bi-color head with the same color pattern as the MANTLE. That is, a black mask covers the ears and eyes and  extends along the sides of the face, while the muzzle is white.

To better illustrate this, if we place a MANTLE and  a  PIEBALD  side by side, looking  from  the front  so  we  can  see  only  their  heads  but  not  the rest of the body, it would be impossible to distinguish  which  of  the  two  is  Piebald  and  which  is  Mantle. As an example, see the photo below:   

Scarbrough Fair Great Danes


 Scarbrough  Fair's Great Danes    

           HARL COLORS:  

Harlequin Litter Color Narrative


The  MANTLE  and  the  PIEBALD  have  the  same  color   pattern  characteristics  in  the head. But the MANTLE,  as the term suggests,  has a black “mantle”  that covers the body,  while  the PIEBALD  can  have  one  or more plates with relatively round or oval borders, distributed along the  body  with  a  white  base  color,  where  normally   the  black  mantle would  be  seen  on the MANTLE danes. 

One can also find PIEBALDS that have a properly marked bicolor-head standard, although  with no plates over the white body. It would be the same as if it was  a  MANTLE  without  the  black mantle  over  the  body.

United States of America

AKC     American Kennel Club : Great Dane Breed Standard

GDCA  Great Dane Club of America:  Official Standard  Illustrated Standard

What  is known as the PLATTENHUND in Germany is called the PIEBALD in the United States. Nevertheless, neither the AKC nor the GDCA recognize danes with this pattern, or that is, in the official  U.S.  standards  we  do not  find  any  reference to the  PIEBALD  Dane, recognized  and described  in  the  Breed Standards  of  the  DDC   as well  as  the  FCI  and  CBKC.

The  most  that  we  can  find  about  this  is  in  the  Illustrated Standard   of   the  GDCA,  in  the item  Color,  Markings & Patterns,   under Discussion, where  there  is a  brief  mention  to  a pattern  that  does  not  fit  into  the  Harlequin  classification:   See  the  passage  of  this   text, highlighted  below:

“Harlequin -  ... When all the markings have rounded, well defined edges (spots) as opposed to the  required  torn  edges,  the  dog  does  not  fall  into  the  harlequin  classification. ... ”  GDCA:  www.gdca.org/coatcolor.htm  

In   addition,   the   page   mentioned   above    includes   illustrations   of   various   examples  of accetable  color  patterns, as well as some with markings considered “less acceptable”, however, there  is  no  illustration  of  that  which  is  known  in  the  USA  as  PIEBALD  or  in  Germany as PLATTENHUND.

In  the  United States,  a dog  with this type of color pattern is commonly called a PIEBALD  and because  this  color  pattern  is  not  included in the official U.S. standards, generally when cited, the   Americans   do   not   make  a  distinction   between  what   is  k nown   in   Germany   as  a PLATTENHUND,  which  has a white base with black plates, of a PIEBALD dane with  plates of any other color.


  See, for example the page Harl Colors:   

      Harlequin Litter Color Narrative   

                      with Photos

       Scarbrough Fair Great Danes,  

         with a description and photos of   


To access the site click on the photos above or below and when it opens, go down  the  page to the description for the PIEBALD.



Scarbrough  Fair's Great Danes    

       HARL COLORS:  

Harlequin Litter Color Narrative



The  owner  of  this  kennel  is  Arlene Scarbrough  and she has bred Great Danes of the Black & Harlequin Variety in Atlanta, Georgia, for more than 35 years. See the page History&Philosophy.

Note:  Black & Harlequin Variety:  includes  HARLEQUIN,  MANTLE  and  HARLEQUIN  BRED BLACK. (GDCA/USA).

No matter if the plates are  BLACK,  GRAYISH, BROWNISH, BLUISH-GRAY or any other color. A  dog  that  has this type of color  pattern (regardless of the color of the patches) is generically called PIEBALD in the United States.

However,  at  times,  we  also  find  the denomination "Merle Piebald", to specify that the plates  have  a  merle color (plates of a gray base with black markings)  on  a  white  body.   For example, visit  the  website  Great  Danes Online  and see on the page  Week 376   the female  dane  Alliewww.danesonline.com/week376.htm.   After  it  opens,  go down the page or click directly on the photo below to access.    

Great Danes OnLine Week 376   

“This is Allie.

    She is a
merle piebald 
 Great Dane
  and in this 
     she  is
 8 weeks old 
 and such  a
  sweet  girl. 
 Thanks  to    


The site  Great Danes Online  is  one  of  the  largest  and  most  complete  websites  about  Great Danes  and  hosts  more than 10,000 photos of the breed in a wide variety of patterns and colors to satisfy any reseach about colors.

See  the  page  www.danesonline.com/archives.htm  to  access  the photos published, sent  from various parts of the world.

Nevertheless, we much more frequently find on U.S. websites photos of Danes with this  pattern simply identified as PIEBALD, regardless of the color of the plates.

To   avoid    any   doubts   about    the   U.S.   definition   of     P I E B A L D    (or   the   Brazilian PLAQUEADO/ PLATTENHUND)  see  the  page:  The Piebald Dane    by   J. P. Yousha. www.dogstuff.info/piebald_dane_yousha.html  or  click  on  the  link  below:

The Piebald Dane by J.P.Yousha

This   is   a  study   of   genetic   aspects   regarding   the  PIEBALDS.  Nevertheless,  it  refers  to PIEBALDS  with  black   plates.  We  refer  to  this study simply to reveal that the term PIEBALD means  the  same  as  PLATTENHUND or  PLAQUEADO  in Portuguese,  where  the  two names (Piebald   and   Plattenhund)   appear   together   in   the    title   of   this   article,   with   the   term PLATTENHUND  in  parenthesis,  as  seen  in  the  link  above.

The Piebald Dane by J.P.Yousha

According to the author of this article,  Ms. J.P. Yousha, all phenotypic expression of  a  Piebald is a genetic  manifestation  of  a  undermarked  Mantledane.  See the original text below:

“All  of  the  various  iterations  of  piebald  in  the  Great Dane (be they s^p or s^e carrying),  are genetically  undermarked  Mantledanes;”

At  the  beginning  of  this  paragraph,  the author mentions that there is considerable confusion about the Piebald Dane and  in  continuation  of  the quote above, she says:

“... ;they are  not acceptable  Mantledanes  nor are  they  some  kind of Harlequin.  Mantledanes must  have a complete  blanket,  not  body  spots. Harlequins must have the distinctive, irregular torn  patches which  distinguish  them  from parti-colored dogs, also called pintos, piebalds, etc. Black  and  white  parti-colored  or  piebalds (pintos)  Danes  are  sometimes  bred (knowingly or unknowingly), and  even  shown  as  Harlequins.”   The Piebald Dane by J.P.Yousha 

It   is  important here  to  define   the  concept   of   “parti-colored”  to  avoid  other   mistakes   in interpretation.

parti-colored dogs = having different colors in different parts

If  you  search the words “parti-colored”  using Google Images you will find photos of different breeds  that  have  this type of  pattern in the black and white colors known as “ black and white parti-colored”.

This type of marking  rarely  fits  into any one of the official standards  of colors established for the Great Dane, even if they may be erroneously characterized at times as Harlequins, at times as Mantles or, even among the Piebalds, given that this “parti-colored” pattern  also  does  not  fit the description of the PIEBALD, considering the definition and description of this pattern in the Breed Standards of the DDC or the  FCI /CBKC. 

If  we  also  consider  the  premise  of J. P. Yousha,  where she  affirms  that “All  of  the  various  iterations  of  piebald  in  the  Great Dane (…), are genetically  undermarked  Mantledanes;” then,  it  would   not   be  correct  to  classify  black  and  white  parti-colored  either  as  Mantles, Harlequins, or  Piebalds,  (considering the FCI/ DDC/ CBKC standard),  given  that for these last she  has  defined  as  “undermarked Mantledanes”.

If  there  is  a  prerogative to register a Dane with black and white “parti-colored” markings, then we  believe that mostly it would fit into the Mantle category, even if it is a Mantle with markings below  the  established  standard , according  to  the premise adopted by the author mentioned.

This  premise  becomes even more consistent if we also consider the incidence of poorly marked Mantles, (or those with less acceptable markings) in which, although the black  mantle  typically covers a  body of a white background, there is an absence of t he  typical  bicolor  head.  Or,  the head  only  has  the  typical  marking  on  one  side  of  the  face,  with  the opposite side at times completely black or, at others, is all white. In addition, there are examples most commonly  found in which the white  collar  is  only  partially present or  completely  absent,  or dogs with mantles that  only   partially  cover   the  body  or  that   have  white  gaps,  or  any  other   alterations.  In conclusion,  we  can   find  a  wide  variety  of   patterns  whose  characteristics  lead   us  to  this standard:  the Mantle.

The original text in German for the Breed Standard of the DDC defines:


“Bei  schwarz-weiß   gefleckten  Doggen:  Weiße  ohne  jedes  Schwarz (Albinos)   sowie  taube Doggen; sogenannte  Porzellantiger  (diese zeigen vorwiegend  blaue,  graue,  gelbe oder auch gestromte  Flecken); sogenannte  Grautiger  (diese  haben  bei  schwarzer  Fleckung  eine  graue Grundfarbe).”


In  Harlequin  Great  Danes:  White  without  any  black  markings (albinos)  and also deaf  Great Danes; so-called Porcelaine Tigers  (these  show  predominantly  blue,  gray,  fawn  or   brindle patches);  so-called  Grey Tigers  [Merles]  (these  have a  grey  ground color  with  black spots).

Therefore, by  definition, a  Porcelaine Dane  has a  white  base, or that is, the body is white and over  this  white  base  it  has  blue,  or gray,  fawn  or  brindled  patches.

The so-called "Porcelaine" Dane described in “Disqualifying Faults” in Harlequins, found in the Breed Standards  of  the  DDC and FCI/CBKC,  is  not  found in any official publication for Great Danes  in  the  United States,  that is, this term  and  its  possible  translation  is  not  used  in the United States.

In  the  United States,  Great  Danes  that   have  this  type  of  color   pattern  are  known  as:     Merlequin,  Merle Piebald   or   Fawnoquin.   See  some  of  the  examples  below:

Merlequin =  white  base  color  with  gray  patches  with  black  speckles inside  them or, that is, white  dogs  that  have  Merle patches,  instead  of   the  irregular   black  patches  found   in  the Harlequins.


Scarbrough  Fair's Great Danes    

       HARL COLORS:  

Harlequin Litter Color Narrative


Merle Piebald  =  white  base  color  with  gray PLATES,  which  generally  have  black  speckles within them or, that is, white dogs that have PLATES with  merle color, instead of irregular black patches found in the Harlequins.

Merle Piebald


Flora Von Bismarck Haus


Canil Von Bismarck Haus



Fawnoquin  =  white  base   color   with   fawn  or   brindle  patches,  instead   of   irregular   black patches  found  in  the  harlequins.


Scarbrough  Fair's Great Danes    

       HARL COLORS:  

Harlequin Litter Color Narrative



This last one  is resulting of mixed color breeding, which is not recommended.

About  the  issue  of  Mixed Color Breeding,  Arlene Scarbrough of Scarbrough Fair Great Danes makes  the  following  comment:

“If  and  when the harlequins, mantles, blacks (out of harlequin breeding) and/or merles are  bred with  fawns, brindles, or blues,  all  sorts of  strange  colors can result.  You can also get some of these  colors  if  you  double  on  dogs  that  are   pure  color  bred   for  generations,  but  whose pedigrees way, way back contain mixed colors.  We will show you two danes, [photo above and photo below]  a  Fawnoquin  and  a  mantle fawn that came from doubling on an imported mantle bitch that was pure color bred for many generations.”   Scarbrough Fair Great  DanesHarlequin Litter Color Narrative with Photos

Mantle Fawn (= Boston Fawn)

Porcelaine or Merle Piebald 






  Arl Von






 See Maxim´s 
 Puppies  on 



See  the  offspring  of   Maxim x Fritz  -  Merle Piebald  x  Black  of  Harlequin Bred  -  on the page Filhotes da Maxim  (Maxim´s Puppies):  4  Harlequins   with   correctly   marked    phenotypes,  4  Mantles  with   correctly   marked   phenotypes   and   1  Mantle Merle.

Regarding  the  Piebald  Dane,  known   in  German  as  Plattenhund,   it   is  seen  that  the   DDC standard,  as  well  a  that of  the FCI, endorsed and translated by CBKC, specify that  the  plates must  be  BLACK  on  a  body  with  a  white  base.  Therefore,  to  be  more  consistent with  the description   of   the   standard,  concerning   the   denomination,  the  color  should  be  properly designated  as  Black-Piebald,  distinguishing  it  from  the  Merle Piebald.  

To view, read the Breed Standard of  FCI – Standards & Nomenclature – Group 2 – Section 2 : Molossoid breeds -  5. Germany - Deutsche Dogge (235) (Great Dane) – English Version: www.fci.be/uploaded_files/235gb2002_en.doc

But, according to the DDC and FCI/ CBKC standards, what happens when the PLATES  are  not black?

For example, in the case of the Great Dane which gave origin to this site,  Maxim,  we did not find an exact  reference that describes the color pattern of  its  coat:  either  in  the  item  COLOR  (the standard  and  officially  accepted  colors) or in  the  item  FAULTS /COLOR,  nor under  the item DISQUALIFYING  FAULTS /COLOR.  (Great Dane Standard:  German Version by  DDC,  English version by FCI  and  Portuguese version by CBKC)

This  is  because  both  the original  German text (DDC) as well as the translations to Portuguese (CBKC) and English (FCI)  describe in Disqualifying Faults  in  the  harlequins  those  dogs that predominantly have patches (Flecken) in the colors: blue, gray, fawn or brindle, but do  not make references to term PLATES in these colors.

We  saw above that in German there is a difference between the terms PLATTEN and  FLECKEN -Platten  meaning  plates and  Flecken  meaning patches.  We  also  read   in  the  description  of  the  PORCELAINE  dog   (Porzellantiger)   in   “DISQUALIFYING FAULTS / COLOR”   that   the PATCHES   (Flecken)  can   be   blue,  gray,  fawn  or  brindle, but the  term  PLATTEN  [rounded patches]  is  not  mentioned  here.

Thus,  only  by  inference  and  or by lack of a more specific description, can the color pattern of Maxim’s  coat  be categorized  within  the  description  “Porcelaine” dog  of  the  DDC and of the CBKC/ FCI.

In this case it must be inferred that this description of “PORCELAINE-TIGERS” includes a  large variety  of  samples  of  dogs  whose  body  have  a   white  base  and   overlapping   patches (or PLATES)  in  the  colors:  blue,  gray,  fawn, brindle,  grayish-brown, that is, any color other than black.

          Basic colors that occur in the breeding of  Harlequin & Black Variety

           Harlequin                   Black                Black Mantle             Black Piebald

Basic colors that occur on breeding  Harlequin & Black Variety

    Merlequin(Porcelaine)          Merle               Merle Mantle       Merle Piebald (Porcelaine?)

To conclude,  I would  like to  make  a  proviso  in  relation  to  the  articles  by  Ms. J.P. Yousha.  The  purpose of  this endeavor is not to conduct  a deep analysis of  the  issue,  nevertheless, a pre-analysis  found  inconsistencies and contradictions and even some  premises that  are  non-conclusive and  conflicting, as  she  herself affirms at the end of her article  “The Piebald Dane”.  See, for example, the last paragraph of this article in  “NOTE”.  In addition,  apparently  many of its  premises are based much more on theoretical speculation than on  research and or statistical data that can  give  them the proper substance, in other words, a certain scientific and academic rigor is lacking.

At  the end  of  this same note,  is  strangely curious  the author's question, by mentioning   that although  the  theoretical  propositions on  the  piebalds cited by the authors are different,  they would  both call  them  mismarks, as to  induce the reader  to  the conclusion that this  fact  itself would  be  a  reason  to  reject  this  pattern,  ignoring  the fact that this designation used  by the authors is strictly  related  to  the  point  of  view  of  a  pre-established  standard.  See the quote below:

“… But  whereas  Dr. Krautwurst  would  call these dogs white-factored (mm) mismarks  and  Dr. O'Sullivan  would  call  these dogs merle-factored (MM or even Mm) mismarks, they would both call  them  mismarks.  And not knowing the genetics of an animal that is also a mismark seems to be yet another reason to NOT breed it?”    The Piebald Dane by J. P.Yousha

For some personal data about this author, see the pages:

Person Profile Jolene Perry  - www.zoominfo.com/Search/PersonDetail.aspx?PersonID=24521217

About Chromadane - www.chromadane.com/chinfo.htm Go down the page  for photo/curículum.

See also the page:  www.chromadane.com/piebald%203.htm 

Finally,  it is clear that there is still generalized confusion among breeders about the phenotypes and  genotypes of  the  colors of  the  Great Dane,  in  Brazil  and  abroad. Thus, much caution is needed when we make a consultation about these issues. In reality,  we  are  lacking  technically substantiated assistance.  That is,  we  need  researchers who are properly trained in genetics to be  able  to  review  studies  that  are   being  presented, such  as that of Ms. J.P. Youscha ,  and  to  continue   the   many  other  related  studies  that  are  not  concluded   or   that   have   many inconsistencies.

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     has to say!

     Vozdukh Vremeni Aljoscha Mladshiy - Great Dane RU - BigDogs. Ru

My  special  thanks  to  Arlene Scarbrough  of   Scarbrough Fair´s Great Danes for her kindness and  generosity  by  teaching  and  helping me in so many ways through my journey in the Great Danes World! Arlene, you´re the best!   Thanks for all!!!

Above all,  the  honor  is  given  to  Him who has created all things, the God of Israel, the God of Abraham,  Isaac and  Jacob, who sent us his only Son so that whoever believes in him shall  not perish  but  have  eternal  life!  Yes, to  you  Lord  I  give thanks for leading and guiding me in all things and  also  in this project! Praise and Glory be to your name among all nations of the earth, today and forever!

“Now  this  is  eternal  life: that they know you,  the only  true God, and  Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.” John 17:3

We also recommend the pages: As Cores do Dogue Alemão  and  Linhagens do Dogue Preto

      Also see the page: O Que os Merles têm a Dizer...  =  What Merles Have to Say....

                                             Page published on Oct. 13, 2008.

                                   English Version published on March 10, 2009.

                CONTACT:    moni.link@gmail.com     -     B A C K       -      H O M E