Sable dog breeds are plentiful, which should come as no surprise given how popular (not to mention beautiful) this type of coat is. Whether you’re into cuddly lapdogs or mega-sized mastiffs, you’ll likely find the dog for you rocking the coat pattern.
Come meet some sable cuties with us below!
What Is a Sable Color Dog Coat?
The sable coat pattern is stunning, as the hair shaft is lighter at the base and darkens to the tip, giving it an ombre effect.
The sable gene is dominant, meaning that only one sable gene is needed in a dog to carry out the coloring.
There are three variations of sable: clear sable, tipped sable, and shaded sable.
- Clear sables are dogs with a full-body red coat showing the hair color change throughout the body.
- Tipped sables show the color variation typically on the head, back, and tail.
- Shaded sables have more brown and black hairs on the head and back.
15 Great Sable Color Dog Breeds
While many dogs feature this striking pattern, here are a few sable standouts to ogle over:
1. German Shepherd Dog
German shepherds come in several shades, but the sable variation is one of the most well-known.
This large working dog is a fantastic all-around family companion, and his intelligence is difficult to match, making him an excellent dog breed candidate for agility and obedience. He’s also a much-loved service dog thanks to his desire to please.
While the breed is a doggy superstar, he has the upkeep of one, too. With high energy and quick wit, he needs a great deal of exercise and mental stimulation to keep happy and out of trouble. If he’s not properly exercised, he can be prone to separation anxiety and destructive behavior.
If you’re interested in the breed, be sure that you’re ready to handle his exercise and attention requirements.
2. Shetland Sheepdog
The sable Sheltie is the most recognizable form of the breed, though he also comes in many two-tone combinations and merle coloring as well.
His long coat is handsome as can be, but it requires a good amount of brushing to keep his heavy shedding at bay. He will mat around the ears, elbows, and tail, too, so pay close attention to these areas.
The Sheltie is beloved on the agility circuit thanks to his high energy and eagerness to please. Regular exercise is needed to burn off his zoomies, though his versatility makes him a candidate for a number of fun doggo sports, including obedience, herding, tracking, and more.
3. English Bulldog
The English bulldog dons several patterns, including sable.
He’s a couch potato owner’s dream with his laidback nature, and a daily walk will satisfy this meatball’s needs. You might want to encourage him to move and groove a little more if you notice him porking up, however, as the breed gains weight easily.
As a flat-faced pooch, special care needs to be taken to keep him cool in the summer to prevent overheating. You also need to prepare yourself for stinky times since the bulldog is one of the gassiest dog breeds out there!
Another smoosh-snozzed sable pooch is the pug.
Clownish and cute, the pug is a natural-born entertainer and fits in well with most families. He’s a friendly little guy with a heart of gold, though his feelings do get hurt easily, so keep training positive.
He is a playful pup with spring in his step, but his exercise needs can be met with a daily walk and indoor play. Like the bulldog, he does require extra care during the summer to avoid overheating, and he is prone to packing on the pounds if exercise isn’t a priority.
A regal doggo with legs for days, the borzoi is surprisingly light-footed for his size with a hidden need for speed. He moves gracefully and shares many similarities with cats, including a stubborn streak that can make training difficult.
But while he may push your buttons, it’s important to maintain a positive tone, as the borzoi is a sensitive soul. That said, he is very sweet and gentle with his loved ones. As a sighthound, he’s wired to chase, so he’s not the best companion for small dogs or cats.
The breed excels at lure-coursing and agility thanks to his incredible speed. He is high energy and needs daily exercise, though he should always be kept leashed or in an enclosed space since he has a high prey drive and can’t resist chasing critters like rabbits.
6. Belgian Tervuren
A courageous pup with boundless energy, the Belgian Tervuren is a favorite dog breed among runners and outdoor enthusiasts.
This Energizer Bunny needs daily exercise and mental stimulation to stay happy, and he appreciates having a job to do, making him an excellent herder and agility competitor. He’s an affectionate dog with a need to please, but he needs a strong yet firm leader to keep his focus.
His beautiful coat is what people notice about him most and with good reason. He comes in a rainbow of colors, too, adding to his appeal.
He requires brushing two to three times a week to strip dead hair, though his twice-yearly heavy shedding season will require additional grooming to keep the fur from flying.
7. English Mastiff
This colossal canine has many fanciers, as he’s one of the largest dog breeds.
But while he’s large and in charge, he doesn’t require as much exercise as you’d think, with a daily walk and play satisfying his needs. He is prone to gaining weight, so he should be encouraged to take a stroll if he’s packing on pounds. Extra weight is especially hard on his joints.
The English mastiff is happy-go-lucky, though you should enroll him in obedience classes as soon as possible due to his size. He grows rapidly, so you want to get him under control before it gets tricky.
His short coat is easy to care for, but you should be okay with a bit of slobber if you’re interested in this breed since he drools heavily.
An elegant pooch with long, feathered ears, the saluki is a head-turner.
This handsome sighthound requires only occasional brushing and rare bathing, as he’s relatively immune to the “dog smell” some humans speak of. He’s a gentle pup with a delicate spirit, though his independent streak can be a challenge.
As you can guess from his figure, he’s a runner, and he requires daily exercise to burn off energy. This should take place on a lead or a well-secured area since the saluki’s high-prey drive leads to chasing behavior and selective hearing.
Healthy outlets for your Saluki include lure coursing, agility, and flyball.
9. English Shepherd
As a breed with farm dog roots, the English Shepherd has a strong work ethic. He loves a challenge and excels at brainteasers and obedience.
He’s also incredibly agile, which makes him an excellent jogging companion. Daily exercise and mental stimulation is a must to avoid destructive behavior, however.
His beautiful coat comes in many colors, though prospective owners should be ready to tackle occasional brushing to maintain it. A reward for all your hard work is a quality dog, as the English Shepherd is loyal and always looking to please.
The collie is a friendly pupper who is relatively easy to train. He’s eager to show you what a good dog he can be, though he needs daily exercise to stay out of trouble.
He’s a jack of all trades that excels at nearly every job you give him, including herding, agility, lure coursing, and more.
This silver screen favorite appears in more than just the sable shade seen on Lassie — he comes in a rainbow of colors and patterns, as well as rough and smooth coat varieties. Rough coat pups require more frequent brushing than their smooth counterparts, though all need regular care to keep up with shedding.
Everyone’s favorite wiener dog is quite the chameleon, coming in three coat varieties and many eye-catching colors and patterns.
He’s a spunky four-footer with a big personality, which can sometimes lead to legendary bouts of stubbornness. Early training is a must to wrangle his independence, though reward-based training can make things easier.
He has a high energy level for such a little dog, and daily walks are a must to challenge him. He needs to be exercised on a leash, however, as his high prey drive can lead to trouble if he’s free to roam.
Note that special care is required to protect your dachshund’s back, as his long, low build is susceptible to injury.
12. Belgian Malinois
The Belgian Malinois is a top-notch working dog that is employed worldwide as a police dog, tracker, and more.
His energy and devotion are hard to match, leading to countless accolades for bravery and a job well done. He’s not a dog for the novice owner, as he isn’t happy waiting around the house for the action to come to him. He needs a job to do and will act out if he’s left to his own devices.
The Malinois is incredibly intelligent and easy to train. While he’s a bright pup, he does need early training to curb his naughty habits, such as a reservation with strangers and chasing instinct.
If you put in the hard work to match his demands, you’ll be rewarded with an obedient companion with lifelong loyalty.
13. French Bulldog
A goofy cutie with a playful streak, the Frenchie is a favorite among small dog fanciers.
While he’s happy to entertain his pawrents with his silly antics, a walk a day satisfies his exercise needs thanks to his calm nature. This makes him an excellent dog breed for apartment living since his needs are met easily.
Just note that, as a flat-faced pooch, you do need to be careful during the summer months to ensure he doesn’t overheat.
The Frenchie’s short coat doesn’t shed much, and he comes in many colors and patterns. You do need to pay close attention to his face folds, however, as they need to be kept clean and dry to avoid skin irritation.
This friendly little guy is agreeable with almost anyone, but he does benefit from early socialization to avoid bratty behavior.
The smallest breed is also one of the most diverse in coat colors and patterns, with sable a much-loved look among fans.
Both the long and short Chihuahua coat variations are easy to care for, though you’ll need to brush the fluffier guys more often. All Chihuahuas need regular dental upkeep, however, since the breed is prone to tooth loss and decay.
A well-rounded and socialized Chihuahua is confident and friendly, though babying can lead to aggression and anxiety. He should be exposed to new people and experiences from an early age to curb any fear aggression.
He’s a beloved lapdog with unrivaled snuggling abilities, though he’s happy to play and entertain, too. A walk a day will meet his needs, but you should adjust his diet and exercise program if you notice him gaining weight.
15. English Cocker Spaniel
A peppy pup with an elegant appearance, the English cocker has remained one of the most popular breeds worldwide for decades.
His long coat comes in many shades and patterns, though all require a regular grooming regimen. This includes daily brushing to prevent mats. Since it’s a lifelong process, you need to start brushing your cocker from an early age so he can grow comfortable with grooming.
The cocker is a sporting breed at heart, so it shouldn’t be much of a surprise that he has a decent amount of energy and spunk. A daily walk and play session can satisfy his exercise needs, though he still makes an excellent hunting dog for flushing game.
Sensational Sable Dog Names
Have a sweet sable that needs a good name? Check out some of our favorite sable dog name ideas below!
Do you have a sable cutie at home? Is he one of the breeds listed above or another? Drop a comment and let us know about your sable sweetheart!