Dalmatian (Photo by Balmer Rosario on Unsplash)

Spotted dogs are striking and often sought-after pets. These unusually beautiful dogs come from many different breeds that don’t always display these distinctive markings. Instead, for most breeds, spots are from a recessive trait that doesn’t always manifest, much like heterochromatic (different-colored) eyes. The pooches on our list of the top five best spotted dog breeds display dazzling dots that are absolutely eye-catching.

No other species comes in such a huge variety of shapes and sizes as domestic dogs. Not even cats or horses display the same diversity. The largest dogs may be close to 25 times the size of the smallest!

Beyond that, we have dogs with drop ears and prick ears and everything in between. They have tails and no tails, or bob tails, short legs, and long legs. Dogs can sport long noses and short noses – and a huge variety of coat colors, lengths, and textures.

For many dog lovers, a spotted coat is an exquisite and desirable trait. Our sources helped us learn about and rank the best spotted dog breeds. Let us know your favorite dogs with speckled coats in the comments below!

The List: Best Spotted Dogs, According to Canine Experts

1. Dalmatian

Dalmatians are the overwhelming leader in the ranks amongst our sources. Their iconic black spots against a white coat have even earned them Hollywood fame. DogsPlanet.com raves, “Of course they had to be first! Ever since Disney introduced these black and white spotted dogs onto our screens, humans have had a particular love for these pups… They’re not recommended for first-time dog owners as they can be a bit stubborn and need training to keep their energy levels under control.”

black and white dalmatian dog on green grass field
Dalmatian jumping (Photo by Michael Walk on Unsplash)

“Perhaps the most iconic spotted coat in all of dogdom belongs to the Dalmatian, a large breed with a unique personality, famous for protecting fire stations and getting dog-napped by fashionable fictional villains. These intelligent and energetic dogs take to training well and are a great fit for active and dedicated people up to the task,” praises betterpet.

Hepper Blog exclaims, “On a list of spotted dog breeds, it would be a crime to start with anything but the Dalmatian. In centuries past, the Dalmatian accompanied horse drawn carriages belonging to nobles and miscellaneous travelers, guarding the horses and cargo.”

2. Great Dane

This famous breed is one of the largest dogs in the world. The Great Dane can be stunning when they sport a spotted coat. The Happy Puppy Site says, “Great Danes come in lots of colors and patterns, but there’s one very special coat which is exclusive to them, and the closest any other breed comes to a Dalmatian’s perfect spots. And that’s the Harlequin Great Dane.”

Short-coated Great Dane photo by Leonides Ruvalcabar on Unsplash
Spotted Great Dane (Photo by Leonides Ruvalcabar on Unsplash)

Dog Snobs describes, “A horse or a dog? The Great Dane is one of the tallest dog breeds with spots on this list. Their coats come in almost every color and pattern you can imagine. They range from solid-colored coats to creative coats with large patches and spots all over their body and head.”

“What else could make a Great Dane stand out more than he already does? A spotted coat, of course! That’s right, the Great Dane is one of our 15 spotted dog breeds that carries the piebald gene and is common for being born with beautiful spots,” elaborates Your Dog Advisor.

3. Australian Cattle Dog

Australian cattle dogs are exuberant pups. They are very intelligent and possess great reserves of energy. Your Dog Advisor comments, “Also known as the Blue Heeler, the Australian Cattle dog is not only a gorgeous spotted dog breed, it’s also an incredibly intelligent one… This beautiful dog is known for his piebald coat, making him another one of the most recognizable spotted dog breeds on our list.”

Australian cattle dog laying on a beach with its tongue out photo by Daniel Lincoln on Unsplash
Australian cattle dog laying on a beach with its tongue out (Photo by Daniel Lincoln on Unsplash)

Top Dog Tips adds, “Bred as farm dogs in the 1820s, the Australian Cattle dog is recognized as one of the smartest canines by author and expert Stanley Coren. Australian Cattle dogs help herd livestock by biting or nipping at their heels. Hence, the nickname Heeler.”

helloBark! details, “The powerful but muscular Australian Cattle dog also called blue or red heeler or Queensland heeler is associated with the Australian wild dog, the Dingo. This breed is born with a white coat that turns blue-grey or red.”

4. English Springer Spaniel

Spaniel dogs come in many varieties. English Springer Spaniels often display mottled patterns on their wavy coats. Pet Side explains, “Springer by name, and springy by nature, the energetic and totally loveable English Springer Spaniels are characterized by a splodgy coat, which includes smaller speckles across its soft fur as well as muzzle and chest. The speckles and splodges are typically black or brown on white, further enhanced by its feathery coat.”

English Springer Spaniel photo by Rafaëlla Waasdorp on Unsplash
English Springer Spaniel (Photo by Rafaëlla Waasdorp on Unsplash)

“The English Springer Spaniel dog is a sweet-faced, lovable dog of great energy, endurance, and brains. They are happy and friendly dogs that are contented hunting in the fields and fetching in the park. Springer is a gun dog generally used for flushing and retrieving game,” offers helloBark!.

“The English Springer Spaniel is one of the spotted dog breeds that are well-loved by many. They even appeared in 16th-century art countless times, including Charles II as Prince of Wales (1630) and James Stuart, Duke of Richmond and Lenox (1637),” states Top Dog Tips.

5. Bluetick Coonhound

Bluetick Coonhounds are so named for the delicate spots that they often display. This hound dog has droopy features similar to a Basset Hound. 101DogBreeds claims, “The spots could come in shades of black, orange, liver, or brown, while some dogs may also have a ticked or mottled appearance, like the Bluetick Coonhound.”

Bluetick Coonhound photo by bark on Unsplash
Bluetick Coonhound (Photo by bark on Unsplash)

“Known for their unique and recognizable coat, these black and white spotted dogs actually get their name from their dark and speckled fur. They have wonderfully long ears and a coat that can have black, white, and tan little spots,” relates DogsPlanet.com.

“As the name implies, these hounds have grayish-blue coats ticked with white, black, or red markings throughout. The effect is very similar to the Australian cattle dog, breaking up the dog’s profile in shady spots… Be ready for some noise, however, as they love to bawl and bark in true hound fashion,” reviews betterpet.

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Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations.

About Alan Corona

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