Getting a dog is a long-term commitment. Before choosing a pet, consider initial and recurring costs, home environment, size, temperament, and physical characteristics of the dog. Consider training, exercising, and grooming needs, along with your lifestyle.
Despite the huge variety in coat color, there are only two basic pigments that determine the color of canines: eumelanin (black) and phaeomelanin (red). All different variations in color are created by these two pigments, which are both forms of melanin.
Inherited traits or disorders are passed down in an animal's genetic code. This genetic code is found in the animal's DNA. The DNA contains thousands of genes. A gene is a specific DNA sequence that leads to the expression of an inherited characteristic.
Each time that DNA is replicated, errors can be made. One base may be switched for another base, for example an A switched with a C. In more severe situations, an entire section of the genetic code can be deleted or moved to a different location. Depending on where in the DNA this mutation occurs, the effects of these mutations may vary from nonexistent to severe.
Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is a long molecule that contains an animal's entire genetic code. Every cell in the body is created with identical strands of DNA. This DNA determines each cell's structure and function, therefore determining the overall appearance, health, and actions of the entire animal.