This is Blaze, the Labrador Retriever. He was born 10 years ago in Finland. His coat was black originally. He used to look just like any other Labrador, but something has changed.
This dog breed is quite loved by owners all over the world. He was born with a black coat but after a few years white spots started to appear on him. His owner, Santeri Frilander, said that at the beginning they thought the spots emerged because Blaze was starting to get old. But then he got even more spots. So that theory went down the drain.
The spots started appearing on his head first, then some new ones emerged on his back and his legs. Around this time the owners started to worry for their furry friend. But it turned out there is no need for that. The spots are the consequences of a rare condition called vitiligo.
It mostly affects people, but sometimes it can appear in dogs as well. When a person has vitiligo, their skin starts to lose its natural color, when it affects dogs, the color of their coat changes. Nobody knows yet what causes this disease so there is no cure for it.
Santeri, the owner says, that Blaze’s life has not changed a lot because of this condition. The condition doesn’t cause other symptoms. Blaze is still a happy and healthy dog. In fact, because of his extraordinary look, people tend to admire him. So, this is great for Blaze because he loves to be the center of attention.
There is a famous Facebook group called Dogspotting Society. Santeri posted a photo of him there and the number of Blaze’s fans seems to be growing ever since then.
Blaze is no longer a young dog but his condition made people give him interesting nicknames like ’The Old Man’ and ’The Funny Old Man.’
Blaze’s favorite things to do are walking in the woods and swimming in the lake nearby.