SABINO is part of the OVERO Paint/Pinto complex, but it is not always expressed as a
spotted "pinto" pattern. Current research indicates there may be
more than one genetic component to the Sabino group of patterns
Here are four mustangs who illustrate the range of Sabino coloring:
L-R: Lacy spotting similar to Frame Overo; Maximum White; Roaned Sabino; "Clyde"-type Sabino markings
Calvin, a Sabino Roan owned by Jessica Young
and Rocky, a sabino Mustang adopted by Sandy Davitt
SABINO is not always easy to identify.
There is now a genetic test that can identify at least one form of it.
To learn more, click here: http://www.vgl.ucdavis.edu/service/horse/coatcolor.html#sabino1
in homozygous form, produces the Maximum Overo White color
which looks similar to Lethal White, but is not associated with any health problems. Therefore, it is a good idea to have breeding stock tested for both
Frame (which does produce Lethal White) and Sabino (which can closely resemble Frame, but produces a
healthy, completely non-lethal white foal)
Though lumped in with other overo patterns for registration purposes, Sabino is different genetically, and is
not connected with Overo Lethal White Syndrome. Current research indicates Sabino is polygenic - that is, controlled by more than one gene. These interact in ways not yet fully understood to create the wide range of sabino expression.
Sabino also commonly occurs in combination with other patterns, especially the other Overo patterns (Frame and Splash).
Sabino has a wide range of variations:
Maximum Sabino is all white
Sabino Roan is evenly roaned and dappled over the body and face
(which can make it difficult to distinguish from a horse in the early
Clydesdale and Shire draft horses are Sabino, although they
are not often thought of as "pinto." The most famous Clydesdales are the
Budweiser Clydes. These have been selected for a uniform look, but
within the breed there is a lot more variation.
Minimal Sabinos (as well as Sabino Roans) also do not look pinto - they may show as little as a white chin and a small but jagged-edged sock or a few belly spots.
Often unrecognized, these minimal sabinos are genetically capable, of producing
more wildly colored offspring. These Minimal Sabinos are a common source of so-called "crop-out" paint/pinto horses from supposedly solid-colored parents,
and from breeds that do not normally produce pintos.
(a horse must have two or more of these to qualify for registry in the Sabino Horse Registry):
|• Wide Face White
• Odd Shaped White on Face
• White Chin Spot
• White Lip Spot
• "Milky" Chin
• Socks or Stockings That Come to a Point
• Lightning Strikes
• Belly Spots or Splashes
• White Spots under Jaw or Throat
• Partial Socks or Stockings
• White Spots on the Legs
Mustang at BLM adoption
• White Hairs on Body Coat
Mustang at Palomino Valley BLM Center
• Roaning Without a True Roan Parent
(The 'roaning' on a sabino is not the same we see with a 'true roan' gene or with the gray gene. The face is roaned along with the body.)
Deanna Morehouse's sabino roans
Lad, a Sabino Roan Clydesdale colt owned by Chessica Dippner
Sir Patrick, a
Roaned Sabino Curly
stallion owned by Jackie Richardson in Iowa
• Roaning on body, especially lower abdomen
Three variations on Sabino - owned by Deanna Morehouse
Sabino Clydesdale and her colt, owned by Chessica Dippner
Bay Roan Sabino Shire
"Ian" owned by William Mills
• Lacey Body Spots
• Markings with Lacey Edges
Mustang at BLM Adoption
Mustang at BLM Adoption
Mustang at BLM Adoption
- photo courtesy of Joleen of 1Rainbowhorses Yahoo Group
• Odd White Patches on the Body
Hoodoo, adopted by Lesley Neuman, has "odd-shaped patches of white" that don't fit neatly into any definite pinto category. He is a breeding stallion, however, and his progeny have all shown strong sabino traits.
• Born WHITE
or almost all white (a few specks) from Colored or Spotted Parents
(may have either dark or blue eyes)
Maximum White Sabinos are NOT Lethal Whites!
The Budweiser Clydesdales,
as well as all other Clydesdales, are is Sabino. So are Shire
Some Sabinos are hard to distinguish from Frame Overo, Splashed White, Rubicano (part of the Roan-Related Complex), and White
More Sabino Pix:
"Lenny" a Shire stallion
Red Dun Sabino mustang
Maximum sabino PMU foal
1/2 Freisian Maximum sabino colt
Deanna Morehouse's Maximum Sabino colt, Preston
Elaine Hickman's rabicano-sabino
Martha Conlin and her Shire horse, "Hank"
"Cheyenne", showing typical sabino lacy spotting on the sides, plus "lipstick" around lips
This foal, owned by Tammi Vogel, is alive today thanks to
information Tammi was able to learn from this website! When the pure white
foal was born, he seemed normal, but local hore folks all warned that it was
only a matter of time until symptoms would start and he would die a painful
death - so she should call the vet out and have the foal put down.
Tammi made the vet appointment but luck was
with her and the vet couldn't come out until much later. During that time,
she researched Lethal White on the Internet and came upon this website,
where she learned of Maximum White Overos - in this case, Maximum Sabino,
judging from the mother's lacy spotting pattern.
I happened to check my email early that
morning and my heart jumped to my throat when I saw the photo and the
diagnosis. DON'T PUT THAT FOAL DOWN! I responded and called her on the
phone. We had a nice conversation and she was very relieved to be able to
give the foal a chance.
later he was still fine, so the vet never needed to come out to do the
Many months later, "Go Check Whitie" (named
for the frequent text message Tammi sent to her family while she was away at
work) is healthy and strong, a completely normal weanling colt!
Maximum sabino purebred Arabian filly (KHROWNED N DANGEROUS) owned by Peggy Nickerson
Both The University of California at Davis and Animal
Genetics, Inc. of Florida can test for the presence of Tobiano, Red, Frame, Creme,
Silver, Sabino1, and Agouti (Bay). The test for Tobiano can determine whether or not
a horse is homozygous of heterozygous (good to know if you are trying to breed for Tobiano).
You can download forms for these tests from their website-- follow
the links from http://www.vgl.ucdavis.edu
OR, from the Animal Genetics website
Pages in the WHITE & SPOTS Section:
l ROAN l RABICANO l OTHER ROAN-LIKE PATTERNS