Isabella Vs Lilac French Bulldog Guide (Before you Buy)

Recently, Lilac and Isabella Frenchie have been receiving a lot of attention, particularly on social media spaces, leaving many perplexed. Are Isabella and Lilacs related? If not, what is the distinction? Genes? Are they healthy? If these are some of your concerns, you’ve come to the correct place. Stay tuned. 

Isabella is a creamy, light-brown color with a hint of lavender, while Lilac is a pale, silver-gray, or greyish-purple color. These French Bulldog variations are considered rare and command a high price.  

It’s important to note that while coat color does not affect a dog’s health or temperament, some experts believe that these coat colors may predispose the dog to a condition called “color dilution alopecia“, which causes thinning of hair due to lack of pigmentation.

However, it’s essential to keep in mind that Frenchies of all coat colors can make great pets. It’s their personality and characteristics that make them special.

Both colors are caused by specific genetic mutations passed down from the parents that dilute the skin and coat color. More on that below, Scroll On. 

Isabella VS Lilac: In a nutshell

The physical qualities of a dog including coat color and texture are determined by genes. The existence and expression of two melanin pigments, eumelanin, and pheomelanin, dictate coat color in dogs (and many other mammals, including humans and bats).

Eumelanin is black by default, but when its structure is altered, it can appear brown. Pheomelanin is the pigment responsible for the red and yellow coat colors. The intensity of these pigments can be altered by dilution genes, resulting in lighter colors.

The Isabella and Lilac coat colors are a result of gene combinations that modify and dilute eumelanin pigments. The Isabella hue is due to the dilution of brown/chocolate eumelanin pigment to a creamy, light brown, similar to adding creamer to hot chocolate. Meanwhile, the dilution of the cocoa or coco eumelanin pigment to greyish-purple/silver-gray causes Lilac.

Coco French Bulldogs appear to be a deeper and darker shade of brown than Brown or Chocolate Frenchies. As a result, Isabella French Bulldogs are paler than Lilac Frenchies.

Isabella French Bulldog

The Isabella French Bulldog is a rare coat color variation characterized by a pale cream-brown coat. Newborns have a bluish-gray coloration that gradually lightens as they mature.

  • Coat color: Light creamy brown. Some may have white markings on their chest, neck, feet, underbelly, and tail tips. On Frenchies with a red or yellow coat, brown does not dilute the hair color but modifies the skin, nails, and eye color.
  • Eye color: Can range from light amber to light blue. May exhibit a red glow under certain light conditions.
  • Nose color: Light brown or pale pink nose
  • Skin: Pinkish. Can be seen on the nose leather and paw pads and skin surrounding the mouth (lips), eye rims, paw pads, and light-colored claws

Isabella French Bulldog DNA

Isabella French Bulldogs have a unique coat color determined by specific genes. This coloration is due to a combination of a browning gene (mutant TYRP1) and dilution genes (mutant MLPH) at the B and D loci respectively. The first set of browning genes (b/b) turns the default black pigments brown, which is then diluted to a pale brown color (isabella) by a pair of dilution genes (d/d) for a “bb/dd” genotype.

In its mutated form, the TYRP1 gene pair causes the pigment-producing cells to produce a modified eumelanin pigment that appears brown instead of black. The MLPH gene pair leads to the dilution of eumelanin pigment resulting in black being diluted to blue-gray, ash-colored, or slate color while brown is diluted to pale brown (isabella). This is because eumelanin is produced in lower concentrations. These genetic mutations only affect the skin and coat pigmentation and not other physical or personality traits.

To have an Isabella French Bulldog, both parents must be carriers of the genes or be Isabella Frenchies themselves.

Isabella Frenchie Price

Despite being rare and highly sought after, Isabella French Bulldogs are actually quite easy to buy. A quick search of the name, “Isabella French Bulldog for sale” and you will be inundated with pages of breeders.

Prices for Isabella French Bulldogs are usually higher than those of standard Frenchie colors. The cost, however, can vary widely ranging from $2500 to $8000 or more. The average price is around $3500 with some breeders charging as much as $15,000. Some breeders may charge more for males than females

The cost of breeding French Bulldogs is also very high, so breeders may charge a high price for puppies. Breeding French Bulldogs can be difficult due to their large heads and small hips. Many breeders use artificial insemination to keep the dogs safe during breeding.

Although it is now common to ship dogs (even internationally), there are ethical and health concerns with this practice. I would not recommend it. Make an effort to visit the breeder and observe their breeding practices. In what condition is the dam and/or sire? Do the pups look healthy and are the premises clean? It is important to consider the standards and adoption policies before purchase.

Color variation

  • Isabella Merle French Bulldog: Isabella Merle French Bulldogs are a variation of the Isabella French Bulldogs characterized by a unique Merle marble coat pattern- irregular light and dark-colored patches. These patches are randomly distributed on the coat, giving the dog a unique and striking appearance.
  • Isabella Tan French Bulldog: The Isabella Tan Frenchie is characterized by a light brown coat coloration with tan markings above the eyes, on the sides of the muzzle, and neck, as two patches on the chest, feet, and underbelly
  • Platinum Isabella French Bulldog: This is an Isabella Frenchie with a cream coat

Coat patterns with any black pigmentation are also affected by dilution The average cost of an Isabella Tan French Bulldog is around $3,990.

Are Isabella French Bulldogs rare?

Isabella French Bulldogs are considered to be a rare coat color variation among French Bulldogs. This is due to the specific genetic mutations required for the dog to have this coloration. Both parents must be carriers of these specific genes or themselves be Isabella French Bulldogs.

Is the Isabella Frenchie Recognized by AKC?

Isabella French Bulldogs are not recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) and are not eligible to participate in AKC-sanctioned conformation events. The AKC’s standard for French Bulldogs does not include the Isabella color variation.

What is a Lilac French Bulldog?

Lilac French Bulldogs possess a unique coloration with a pale greyish-brown coat with a hint of purple. Their shades range from clear to deep purple lilac. Puppies are born with a soft blue coat that gradually lightens to silver-gray coloration with a touch of purple hue.

  • Coat color: Pale greyish-purple. On Frenchies with a red or yellow coat, brown does not dilute the hair color but modifies the skin, nails, and eye color.
  • Eye color: Can range from light amber to light blue. May exhibit a red glow under certain light conditions.
  • Nose color: Light brown or pale pink nose
  • Skin color: Reddish pink skin visible on the nose leather and paw pads and skin surrounding the mouth (lips), eye rims, paw pads, and light-colored claws

Lilac Frenchie DNA (genes)

The Lilac Frenchie color is caused by the presence of two copies of the cocoa and dilution genes, resulting in a specific genotype “coco/dd”. This means that both the cocoa and dilution genes must be present. The cocoa gene changes the black pigment to a dark brown, while the dilution gene lowers the concentration of the brown cocoa pigments to a muted brown or gray-purple color, known as lilac.

Cocoa pigmentation is caused by the presence of two copies of the recessive mutant HPS3 allele, denoted as co/co, which leads to the production of immature eumelanin pigments. The cocoa gene results in a deep, dark brown color as the production of black eumelanin is only partially blocked. Lilac Frenchies can be produced when both parents are carriers of the gene or are lilacs themselves. If a lilac dam is bred with this dog, the resulting litter will be 100% lilac.

Lilac French Bulldog price

A Lilac French Bulldog is a premium pup that costs anywhere from $2500 to $10000 depending on the breeder, location, demand, and so on. This high cost is due to its rarity and breeding complications. Thus cheap puppies are almost impossible to come.  Find a reputable breeder that cares about the pup’s well-being and breeding conditions.

Color variations

  • Lilac Merle: This is a Merle Frenchie whose black eumelanin pigment has been diluted to lilac.
  • Lilac Tri Frenchie: This is a Lilac tan Frenchie with white markings on the neck, chest, underbelly, and feet.
  • Lilac fawn French Bulldog: They have a chocolate brown body that appears diluted with lilac shades around their eyes, face, and ears.
  • Lilac tan French Bulldog (Double Lilac): The base color is lilac with tan points above the eyes, the sides of the muzzle, chest, feet, and underbelly.
  • Lilac Sable: This is a Sable Frenchies whose black hairs have been diluted to lilac.
  • Platinum lilac French Bulldog: This is a lilac Frenchie with a cream coat. The cream coat is due to the presence of the pheomelanin melanin pigment. On this dog, the pale purple lilac coloration is only visible on the nose, paws, and skin surrounding the mouth (lips) and eyes (rims).

Lilac vs Blue French Bulldog

Lilac and blue French Bulldogs are both considered to be rare color variations. The main difference between the two is the specific genetic combination that produces their coat color. A Lilac French Bulldog is a result of a double dilution of the black coat color gene. This results in a light grayish-purple color. Meanwhile, a Blue French Bulldog is a result of dilution of the black coat color, resulting in a blue-gray or steel-blue coat color. This color is often described as “slate” or “ash-colored.”

Do lilac Frenchie eyes glow red?

French Bulldogs, like all dogs, have a special layer of tissue called the tapetum lucidum at the back of the eye, which reflects light and improves night vision. But in all Lilac dogs, the pigmentation on this layer is diluted causing the eyes to appear to glow red when illuminated by a light source in low-light conditions.

However, some dogs, including those with dilute coat colors like chocolate, blue, and merle may have little to no tapetal pigment and therefore exhibit a red reflex. This means that a red eye glow does not necessarily indicate that a dog is a lilac French Bulldog, as it can also occur in other coat colors. To see this effect, the puppy should be at least 5 weeks old, and this is more prominent in older puppies.

How rare is a lilac French Bulldog?

Lilac French Bulldogs are considered to be a rare color variation of the French Bulldog variation. The rarity of this color is due to the specific genetic combination required to produce the lilac color which makes them relatively uncommon compared to other colors. They are not recognized by American Kennel Club (AKC) and are not eligible for AKC-sanctioned conformation events.

Are Lilacs & Isabellas healthy?

The Lilac and Isabella French Bulldog variations are caused by genetic dilution that can predispose them to color dilution alopecia (CDA). CDA results in hair loss, dry skin, and itching. However, it’s important to note that only a small percentage of Lilac and Isabella French Bulldogs are affected by CDA, and the condition can be managed with proper care.

It is important to research and purchase from a reputable breeder to ensure a healthy puppy, as some breeders may not have properly bred their dogs and may not have checked the genetic health of the parents.

To Wrap Up

Lilac and Isabella French Bulldogs are often seen as luxury pets and are among the most expensive companion dogs.

However, it’s important to be cautious when buying one of these dogs, as breeders trying to create these coat colors may be breeding unhealthy puppies with genetic issues. It’s important to check the parents’ health records and to physically visit the breed to ensure the dog is in sound health. Caring for a dog is a lifetime investment. Be sure you are adequately prepared. 

Did you find this guide helpful? Share your thoughts and feedback in the comment section below. 

There you go, WOOF!

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