Thursday, March 22, 2012

Just kick me please!

So ran across a "breeder’s" website the other day, needless to say though I shouldn’t be shocked, I still continue to be about people claiming to be responsible breeders producing health and genetically perfect dogs.

So let me back track some. This particular breed is in the middle of an upheaval. I tend to follow the antics of other breed clubs and this one has been brewing for some time. Decades in fact.

You all know what a mini aussie is? Right? Okay, without getting into it deep, many years ago a person decided to take it upon themselves to miniaturize a breed that was specifically breed for a particular size and structure to do a specific job. Currently you will find mini and toy aussies. When the breed club of those dogs decided it wanted to join the AKC, all heck broke loose and I totally agree with the parent club of the Australian Shepherd. When you talk to a true blue aussie person, one mention of mini or toy will get you booted out of the building. To say it’s sore subject is an understatement.

Currently, after a couple of years of wrangling, the aussie parent club has agreed to allow the mini to join the ranks of AKC dogs…but….with a few rules. First the standards are pretty much the exact same and will stay that way, though there will be disqualifications in the minis for too small(not allowing the toys) and too tall. An audit of the AKC records show that in fact there are a lot of the “regular” aussies registered that are actually minis and for a time the books will be open for those dogs to move to the mini registry. They will also two separate breeds. No varieties like collies, beagles or dachies. There will be no breeding between the two. And the greatest change….the name. Aussie club would not allow the use of mini aussie to be used, really emphasizing the discord between the two groups. The new name for the mini aussie is Miniature American Shepherd.

Back to the website I stumbled across. I’ve actually stumbled across it a while ago and been following it in attempt to see if they follow the trend or how the site matures as the owner does. It doesn’t

So first off, dogs are NSDR registered. Did you know that all my dogs can be NSDR registered, it’s pretty simple, cheap and hey, it’s a registry, puppies have papers, that makes them good, right? Totally nothing against NSDR, but when I can’t get a list of accepted breeds, standards, events, the site hasn’t been updated in what, years and one of the questions on the application is tail length? Anyway they still don’t have the link updated with the correct name for the mini. For what it’s worth, you also have no way to access pedigree information or stats—another thing that makes me wonder how worthwhile and trustworth a registry like that can be.

Next red flag, all my dogs are healthy and free of genetic issues such as having good hips. No record of OFA, CERF, etc—their vet says their healthy. Please don’t be fooled people—a local farm vet has no clue on how to evaluate hip structure or that just because the dog doesn’t run into the wall, they must have good eye site. This is actually a breed with huge health issues—PRA, hips, elbows, other eye disorders, dentation issues. Oh and MDR1-the breeder talks about it on their website, but no mention of their dogs results, just you might want to test your puppy and avoid thiese drugs-which is actually the best thing to do instead of testing. Come on? Seriously, push the health of a puppy on the new owners and giving them little if no information on the parents of the dogs other than our vet says they are good dogs.

Want more? Are they following the breed news and is there any where on their website about the AKC letting the breed in, how dogs are registered and the name change? Nope. To me that’s a huge no-no. You always follow what’s going on in your breed, know the current health topics, what dogs are now being allowed to do(lure coursing for instance). Especially when such a giant change is occurring that will in fact change the course of your breeds future.

Hum, what else? Granted I know things happen-bitch starts whelping early when you aren’t there(some can be predictable, some bitches just aren’t reading the rules on whelping). But to me not watching and waiting with your bitch as she whelps? Finding them in the morning outside having whelped in some distant spot. Granted I know that some LGD’s whelp their litters in the barns, sheep pens etc as this is where the dog will live and grow up, but not someone proclaiming to be selling the perfect pets and wonderful companions to Joe Blow.

My last key here I think not only applies to this website and breeder, but many others, is what is missing. Some of the things I’ve run across are that a dog is a great family dog, loves to show and placed lots—missing information-dog only is around his own family, gets dragged to shows and is so scared it doesn’t function, just there and places at the bottom of its class. Dog is healthy—now, missing information-no CERF, no hip exrays yet dog has relatives with eye issues or dog itself has had back and other health issues. I can go on and on. What is it that I preach—full disclosure? Mine right now—Dove had a shoulder injury as a pup-went to the vet, xrays, chiro etc. Soft tissue and it was due to either her climbing the gate to the horse pasture or one of the horses clipping her after she fell in. We can definitely determine, it’s not an issue she will pass on to her pups—well, the gate climbing maybe.

I shouldn’t be shocked, this happens all the time – that is people thinking they are great breeders, promoting their pups and selling them to whoever, because the general public can be so naïve. I’ve said it before, we are a society of instant gratification. We want it now and people have a way of saying things to make it happen now. Frustrating on my part as I don’t feel it’s right. I have to keep telling myself that I need to just watch and learn what not to do.

Off the soap box and out in the sun enjoying an early Iowa spring!

Later gators...

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