Perlino horses and ponies come in a wide range of shades due to the variations in their underlying colour genes.
Welcome to the Perlino Horses And Ponies pages.
I have split cremellos and perlinos into their own sections so that there is more space devoted to each of these very special dilutes.
Like their single cream counterparts, the buckskin, perlinos genetically are black, brown or bay horses. They carry two copies of the cream modifier which dilutes both their skin and hair pigment.
The wide range of colours found in the perlino is a reflection of their underlying base coat colour and the extent to which the cream has diluted the black pigment.
A more detailed explanation can be found in the Colour Genetics Page.
Some perlinos are hard to distinguish from their red based counterparts, the cremello. Others, especially the smoky browns and blacks, can look particularly striking with their smoky coloured manes and tails and dark ivory coats.
Perlinos also often have sooty looking legs where the cream hasn't been able to completely eradicate the black pigment.
Another feature of the perlino is their freckled skin. Whilst cremellos are also often freckled, the perlino generally exhibits this characteristic to a higher degree.
Some perlinos may have a more yellowish cast to their eyes whilst the cremello eye is almost always some shade of blue.
Generally the term perlino is used to describe a black horse carrying agouti and two copies of cream ie a bay or brown.
Smoky perlino is used to refer to black horses with two copies of cream that don't carry agouti ie true black horses.
There are examples of both on the Perlino Coat Colours page.