Thursday, May 28, 2009

Breed question

Well, dewclaws are done. Only glued one pup to another and one vet tech to a pup. Doc uses surgical glue to hold the wound shut and well if we are assembly line doing the puppies, ie, I pick one up, hand to tech, Doc does the dewclaws, tech hands pup back to me while I hand her another, sometimes the glue isn't dry when I stick them back in the crate. This started off as a joke when doing the one and only collie puppies, we had one leg glued to a siblings head. Anyway, all went well, they all checked out fine and Shoobug had a snit that we were doing things to her puppies.

First off, I always take momma dogs with me. Left one at home(it's only 5 mins to Doc's) and when we got home 20 mins later-had attempted to destroy a door. 2nd, Doc can then look mom over to make sure she's doing okay. But we made it there and back without issue. Too funny, once I got the pups back in the whelping box/pool, she had to count and make sure there were still 6.

Now here's the question I have for breeders out there---what's the deal with pigment? As noted by our national specialty judge this year, Jon Kimes, we are really having issues with pigment. He had a few that were not dark black, but had a dilute quality to them. Granted I understand the ee / clear reds or what ever you chose to call them, but what about pigmenting as babies?

Many people, cardigan and pemmie alike, have litters right now. I am a firm believer in watching puppies as they grow to see how they mature. That goes for pigment. I've been noticing a lot of puppies that at 3-4 weeks are just starting to pigment, have speckled or even weak coloring-not strong black. Here's the question-is this something that we as breeders should be noting and adding to our list of things to evaulate for? Personally, I think that the answer is yes. Strong dark pigment is a part of our standard. If we don't make note of those pups that pigment late or have weak coloring and use that as another evaluation marker, then I think we are setting ourselves up for an issue generations down the road. Our breed does not call for chocolate or dark brown, it's black. I do believe that's the same for pemmies. Year's ago, a lab breeder friend of mine said that because people didn't make note of this issues and bred without care of pigment, blacks and yellow labs were ending up with chocolate noses and even pink ones. Took a long time to fix it and eliminated some nice dogs that otherwise should have stayed in the breeding pool.

I have never had an issue with puppies not having pigmented noses and eye rims by 3 weeks. Heck Marg's last litter had boys that were starting to pigment the day they were born(Alec claims that's because Marg cooked them too long:0) But seriously, 3 of the 6 current pups are already starting to color in. I have no doubt that by the time eyes and ears are open in another week and half, they will be well on their way to full pigmentation. One thing I pride myself on.

I will note here, I am talking about the reds, brindles and b/w cardigans. Blues are a whole 'nother ball game. Eddie for example, yes dear Edweirdo, came to us with a beautiful butterfly nose. I loved it, but now at 2 1/2, his nose is completely filled in with only white on the inside of his nostrils and you have to really look to see it. BUT--his pigment is true black-not diluted at all. So what's your opinion on this???

On an Eddie note, I swear Joann, you need to help me clone him. I have a huge waiting list for Eddie babies, including two of the techs at the office. For all his weirdo traits, his pain in the ass quirks, he really is a doll. Disregard his hair, which per 4 well known breeders is not fluff but glamour coat---dna test is in the mail to get proof on paper, that boy is so well built it's scary. Now the poor boy gets told he drives the slow bus and his dad sits in the front seat, but he actually is smart, just chooses not to use it most times. Anyway, got a couple of years to wait on his first babies, just enough time for him to win the hearts of a few more people.

Well, the week is almost over, dryer will be fixed tomorrow and I guess I get to spend the weekend doing laundry--yippee!

Later gators.....

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