Eyes to Fall in Love with: The Odd-Eyed Phenomenon in Dogs

Two different colored eyes are real eye-catchers for dogs and cats. This impressive appearance is called odd-eyed. It occurs in humans and animals and is usually of very different origins. You can find out what is behind the odd-eyed phenomenon in dogs’ eyes in the following article.

The Essentials in Brief

  • “Odd-eye” means strange eye;
  • The scientific name is Iris heterochromia;
  • The reasons for this phenomenon are very different. Often it is related to the pigmentation of the eye;
  • Different eye colors look very mysterious, wise, and magical.

Odd-eyed Phenomenon: What Is It?

The look from these two-tone eyes is almost mesmerizing and extremely fascinating. Colloquially, it is referred to as the odd-eyed phenomenon when an animal has two different colored eyes. The scientific term is “iris heterochromia”. If you ask yourself the question “What is Heterochromia irdis?”, Let me tell you: It is a discoloration of the iris of the eyes. The iris is also called the iris. This is the colored part of the eye, which takes on different tones in the odd-eyed phenomenon. The reasons for this can be genetic, but diseases are also possible triggers.

As a rule, the pigmentation of the iris is disturbed, which is why the eye color is different.

A distinction is made between complete, sectorial, and central iris heterochromia. The latter is a two-tone iris that is green, for example but has a brown ring. Sectoral heterochromia is a local pigmentation disorder of the iris. The incidence of central heterochromia is higher than complete eye discoloration.

Which breeds of dogs have two different colored eyes?

  • For example, a dog with 2 different eye colors belongs to the breed of Australian Shepherds. This is often referred to as a “ghost-eyed dog”. It either has two different eye colors or blurred, differently colored spots in the iris;
  • Another, better-known breed for the odd-eyed phenomenon is the Siberian husky. These four-legged friends often have two different colored eyes, which unfortunately also causes many health problems;
  • The Australian Cattle Dog is also one of the candidates with two different colored or at least different colored spots in the eye;
  • Iris heterochromia occurs in the Border Collie especially if they have piebald fur. This is often the case with breeds with this type of coat. The gene mutation also occurs more frequently in white animals.

Which eye is the normal color?

As a rule, the animals always have one blue eye and one of a different color. The latter shows the “normal” eye color of the four-legged friend. The black eye often lacks normal pigmentation due to mutation, heredity, or disease. However, if the visual change in eye color only occurs over time, you should consult a veterinarian.

Which combinations are possible?

As already mentioned, most often there is a combination with blue. Both green, yellow, and brown are within the realm of the possible as a counterpart to the blue eye.

Our Recommendation: Check the Origin of the Odd-eyed Phenomenon

If you want to buy a dog with two different eye colors, you should check with the vet that the animal is healthy. In the worst case, the four-legged friend has a congenital disease or is about to go blind. The meaning of two-tone eyes isn’t necessarily a bad thing, however. If the animal has two different eye colors from birth, it may be a congenital trait such as a genetic defect.

Alice White

Written by Alice White

Alice White, a devoted pet lover and writer, has turned her boundless affection for animals into a fulfilling career. Originally dreaming of wildlife, her limited scientific background led her to specialize in animal literature. Now she happily spends her days researching and writing about various creatures, living her dream.

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