We love the striking beauty of a pup with blue or multi-colored eyes, and while it’s a rare trait, several breeds have them. Read more below about why some dogs have blue eyes, and our favorite breeds of blue-eye beauties.
Sometimes, looking into the soulful eyes of a pup feels identical to those of a human.
These sweet creatures can’t speak with us, try as they might, and communicate so much to us through their eyes, instead.
No matter the color of a dog’s eyes, they’re beautiful; but there is something extra-striking about coming across a rare blue-eyes breed or one with multi-colored irises.
While blue eyes are the rarest color we see in a dog’s eye, some breeds and conditions make the blue-eyes canine variation happen more frequently.
Read below about what gives dogs their baby blues and which breeds are more likely to have them than others.
How do dogs get blue eyes?
Some dogs with blue-eyes possess rare genes, while others have harmless conditions or pigmentation differences that cause the light eye color.
A few reasons why a pup may have light eyes:
- The merle gene gives a dog a swirled coat pattern and affects a dog’s eyes and skin color.
- Dogs that are predominantly white may lack pigment around their eye area, causing lighter eye color variations.
- Certain breeds have a dominant light-eyes gene, while others that are mostly dark-eyes have a recessive blue-eyes gene, causing blue eyes to pop up rarely.
- Albinism in dogs causes a lack of pigment throughout the body, and unlike other albino animals with pink eyes, an albino canine often has blue or amber ones, instead.
9 Blue-Eyes Dog Breeds
Though Weimaraners often have the most beautiful amber eyes, plenty of these pups have blue-eyes that nicely offset their icy silver and gray coats, which earn them the fitting nickname, “gray ghost.” This sporting dog originates from 1800s Germany as a hunting companion and is naturally energetic, and needs plenty of daily runs and exercise to stay happy and emotionally healthy.
They’re very gentle, making the perfect canine match for any family with small children. A Weim is highly-intelligent, to your detriment at times, so be sure to train this doggo well.
A short-coated Weimaraner requires very little grooming with occasional brushing and bathing.
#2 Siberian Husky
When you think of blue-eyes dog breeds, Huskies are usually the ones that immediately spring to mind. Husky eyes are piercing and intimidating, especially when paired with their wolf-like features. You’ll most often see a white Husky with blue eyes, though it’s not uncommon to find particular pups with one blue eye, one brown eye, too.
This ancient breed dates back over 3,000 years as nomadic sled dogs in Northeast Asia, and this modern breed still has plenty of energy to run off every day. A Siberian Husky is best-suited for a family that has a very active lifestyle.
Huskies also tend to be very independent and highly-intelligent, so ample training is a must.
Mixed breeds with Husky genes also tend to have light-colored eyes, like the Australian Husky or Siberian Shepherd.
#3 Australian Shepherd
These sweet, merle-coated pups usually have the associated ice-blue eyes or two differently colored eyes.
Much like other Shepherd breeds, the Australian Shepherd is a herding dog that is whip-smart and loves to be put to work - give your Aussie some agility drills to train and watch them excel!
Adopt this dog if you can offer it a very active lifestyle with plenty to do. Keeping them well-trained and tired is a good recipe for a happy Aussie!
#4 Border Collie
Border Collies come in plenty of colors and coats, and the merle-coated Collies most often possess the dog eye colors you’d expect - bright, light blue!
Another working dog full of boundless energy and wit, these pups love to mind the farm for their owners, excelling most when they feel needed.
Border Collie pups tend to get along very well with children, offering gentle and protective guidance, and become very tightly-bonded with their owners.
#5 Great Dane
Looking for an immense, blue-eyes beauty? The Great Dane possesses both, with their gentle giant status. Beware when choosing a Great Dane puppy to adopt; though they almost always have blue eyes when they’re young, they tend to change color to brown as Danes mature.
Both the harlequin and merle-coated Great Danes make two dogs with blue eyes that keep them throughout their lifetime as they age.
Though the Great Dane is a big dog that may look intimidating, they’re lovely with everyone they meet, including children, and they adapt reasonably well to living in small spaces.
#6 Pit Bull
The Pit Bull breed produces dogs with blue eyes a little less often, though, like Great Danes, almost all of their puppies possess blue eyes when they’re young.
These pups aren’t as fierce as their reputation makes them out to be - they’re adorable pets and love to nanny their family’s children with plenty of love to offer. Poorly trained dogs behave poorly, but a well-trained Pit Bull is a canine companion you can count on.
All of the bully breeds fall under the Pit Bull umbrella, including the American Pit Bull Terrier and the American Staffordshire Terrier.
#7 Cardigan Welsh Corgi
These stout little doggos are known for their massive smiles, which are sometimes accompanied by bright blue eyes, one blue eye and one brown, or a speckled mixture in both eyes.
Despite their small stature, the Cardigan Welsh Corgi makes for an active pet, typical of herding breeds. Corgis’ smarts make them very trainable, and while you’ll hear them give alarm barks when strangers arrive, they’re generally pretty friendly around them.
Corgis do well in families with small children, too, and though they’re a little height-challenged, they’re pleased to navigate homes of any size with help from some simple tools, like this ramp.
#8 Shetland Sheepdog
Shelties are brilliant herding dogs coming from the Scottish highlands. The Shetland Sheepdog born with blue eyes often has a merle coat, much like many other breeds on this list.
This breed is one of the smaller ones with blue eyes, and like other herders, they are highly intelligent and very obedient - they love to please their owners by following directions to a T!
Shelties don’t do as well in homes with other small animals, which they may attempt to herd and chase whenever possible. Their coats are a little higher-maintenance, requiring brushing once or twice each week to avoid matting and tangles.
#9 German Shepherd
The German Shepherd often possesses deep-brown eyes; there are rare cases that one has the genes for blue or lightly-colored eyes.
This dog makes one of the best canine companions for an experienced owner willing to train them well - this is why we often see these pups in essential service roles within the police force. Though they’re intelligent and energetic, they need an outlet for their energy to stay happy and well-adjusted.
German Shepherds are big, and their coats hold a load of fur that requires regular brushing, especially around the change of seasons.
Final Notes: Does Eye Color Matter?
When it comes to picking out a pup with specific eye color, it’s more preference than anything. While most owners want to choose a puppy that they find visually pleasing, it’s, of course, what’s on the inside that counts - adopt your dog for personality and fit, over any superficial reasons.Does your dog train its big blue eyes on you all day long? Read more in our article, ‘Why Does My Dog Stare At Me.’