A Golden retriever who was born with a rare genetic mutation has captured the hearts of hundreds of thousands of people thanks to a distinctive black mark on his face.
Enzo Viola has a pigmented somatic cell mutation which doesn’t cause him any health problems but is the reason why he has a beautiful, black patch of fur on his face.
“Golden retrievers are born with a base black coat, with a ‘modifier gene’ that turns them golden. Almost every dog has this modifier. Enzo has a little stumble in his DNA that erased it on that one part of his face,” owner Ella Castro said.
Enzo Viola was adopted by the Castro family from Texas who decided to adopt the English cream golden retriever not just for his unusual black fur patch but his wonderful personality.
“We got to meet Enzo and his brothers and we instantly fell in love with Enzo not just because of his marking but because he was the sweetest and most playful puppy,” Ella’s daughter Clarissa said.
“He’s special – and who doesn’t like to look at dogs. The mutation doesn’t affect any part of him except for his looks.”
The adorable hound has his own Instagram page which has almost 190,000 followers.
His energy and wonderful personality shines through in the videos posted of the playful pooch.
In one video which has been viewed more than 20,000 times, three-year-old Enzo spins around in an effort to catch a ball while another shows him playing with his favorite toy: a stuffed dinosaur.
Enzo, whose full name is Lorenzo deMedici Splotch Viola, has so much energy his owners have to take him for a walk twice a day, showing just how much this pampered pooch is truly loved.
“We spend a lot of time playing fetch with him in the back yard or playing with one of his toys inside,” Clarissa added.
“There’s so much to enjoy spending time with him, one of my favorite things is that he often falls asleep while tugging on a toy, he’ll just slowly lay down and rest with the toy in his mouth.”
Enzo, who is big for his age and breed, is a very friendly dog insisting all who meet him to stop what they’re doing immediately and interact.
“He loves to greet joggers and bikers and other dogs, and definitely seems to take personal offense any time anyone is too busy to say hello,” the owner added.
How could you possibly ignore this adorable hound, he brings so much joy to everyone who is lucky enough to meet him.
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