The RagTag Daily Prompt number 40 is dappled. Since I’ve been involved in horses all of my life, I instantly thought of them and couldn’t pass this one up.
Some of these photos are not mine and are used for reference purposes only.
To be clear, there are color dapples and health dapples. Health dapples can show up on any dark color and can appear with a shed-out, or disappear when a winter coat comes in. Color dapples are a part of the color, are predominantly in greys and can change slowly over time as the horse ages. Horses with the silver dapple color usually only change slightly and get darker with age. This is a generalization because each horse is unique and the variations are endless.
Grey horses are always born dark. They may be black, bay or chestnut as babies. They can develop dapples as they change from dark to light color. You can tell they’re going to be grey by seeing white or light colored hairs in the thinly haired areas on their face like the muzzle and around the eyes. We call them grey goggles. This is a mare that I used to own. She’s only a few days old here but you can see the goggles around her eyes.
As she got older, she turned more and more grey. She only had dapples for a really short time. Here I think she’s a yearling. She still has the dark mane & tail, but her body has just a tinge of red. This is called a rose grey.
She eventually turned a very light grey with fleabits. Fleabits are those little brown flecks or speckles you see on her coat.
This is another horse I used to own. She was born a chestnut. She’s a weanling here and is already a rose grey. It’s unusual for them to grey out this fast. (She has not been body clipped.)
You can see that she still has the chestnut red in her mane and even in her ear hair. 🙂
Dappled greys can be incredibly dramatic. This horse was born black.
This one was born chestnut.
This exquisite filly is fully grey at a very young age. More than likely she’s been body clipped, which reveals the next stage of the coat under the baby hair.
Here’s the progression of dappled grey on the same horse: Unbridled Song.
This is Austin. His color is a silver dapple pinto. His breed is a Gypsy Vanner. He has since matured out of these star dapples. The dark parts are a solid color now. He’s still very beautiful without them (see below), but in these top two photos when he was younger, he’s phenomenal!