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Hello All,

As some of you already know, I have recently starting breeding dove tans alongside my dove selfs/satins. I have some questions and I would like any advice about breeding them for exhibition.

Question 1: The standard states that the tan should be as rich as possible. That means to me that a dove tan with the correct top colour should win over a dark dove with a richer belly. Is this actually the case? Will the judges pick that mouse? Or do they prefer a decent belly?

Question 2: In the same vein, the standard states that tan on the outside of the feet is a serious fault. Will the judges pick a less impressive tan with clean feet over a rich tan with orange socks?

Question 3: Should the whisker bed be wholly dove and the tan only under the jaw?

Question 4: How badly will a self outcross (to improve size and type) affect the tanning? Would a mouse with really bright, rich tan but tan creep over the feet and ears be a more suitable mouse to choose for a self outcross than a correct tan?

The answers to these questions and any other advice regarding breeding and exhibiting tans would be greatly appreciated, thank you! :D

Sarah xxx
 

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I will try to answer these questions for you, having enjoyed a fair amount of success with dove and silver tans.
1. The standard also states the top colour should be as near as possible to the self colour, so a good balance between top colour and tan is what the judge wants. A good judge knows you will pay a price in terms of depth of tan in achieving the correct top colour and will allow for this. A strong tan is obviously essential to win best tan though, and judges will vary in what they think is the right balance.
2.Good question. The standard states that wholly tan feet is a greater fault than feet the same colour as top. So yes a mouse with the correct colour on its feet would be considered to be more complete than one with tan feet. Obviously the strength of tan is more important in itself, but tan feet is an obvious fault for the judge to jump on.
3.An easy one, thanks! The demarcation line should be straight along the flanks, chest and jaw.
4.Even easier brill! A self outcross will ruin the tan, so obviously, the stronger tan you use the more of it you should get back.....in theory.
Maybe Sarah C will have something to add to this, being an excellent breeder of cham tans.
Hope this helps.
 

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Just two things to add to Phils.Tan accumulates over generations,showing in all the places you don't want it so eventually a self cross becomes annoyingly essential.When showing enter a light and a dark to get to know what a judge prefers but generally speaking a darker mouse with a deeper tan prevails,rightly or wrongly.
 
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