Friday, August 23, 2013

Why Did They Breed To That Dog?

Have you ever wondered why someone decided to do a breeding?  Have you ever said to yourself, “Now why would they do that?" when you heard about a breeding that seemed totally unsuitable.  Did you ever want to ask, "What were you thinking?" when the two dogs seemed like a poor match?  By the same token, have you ever heard a breeding announced and thought, "Wow, what a great idea!  Can't wait to see what they get."  How DID they arrive at that decision?

There are many ways to select a stud dog including (but not limited to) –
  • Using your own male because he’s handy and it won't cost anything
  • Using your own male because he’s right for your bitch
  • Using the male you purchased because he (or his pedigree) seemed right for your breeding program
  • Using your own male because you purchased (or leased) this bitch to breed to him
  • Accidental breeding – one of your own males made the decision for you
  • Using a local dog because it’s cheaper than traveling or shipping or using chilled/frozen semen
  • Using a local dog because he’s right for your bitch
  • Breeding back into the bitch’s pedigree, using one of her male relatives, presumably lining up on quality dogs
  • Breeding back into her pedigree because you want to advertise a linebred litter, even though you know nothing about the line or what it produces
  • Using a dog suggested by the bitch’s breeder
  • Using a dog whose owner has been pimping for him and making nice comments about your bitch
  • Using a dog because "someone" told you he did nice ____s
  • Using a dog because his owner will do it for a puppy, saving you a stud fee
  • Using a top winning dog because you think it will help you sell puppies
  • Using a close relative of a top winning dog because it may help sell puppies
  • Using a close relative of a top winning dog because he’s a good producer
  • Using a dog because you really like what he produces
  • Using a dog because yo really like HIM and hope he can produce well
  • Using frozen semen from a dog of the past because it will help you sell puppies
  • Using a dog because it just “feels” right (don’t discount this one)
  • Using a dog because you want to add “pedigree pieces”
  • Using a dog because the litter will have a great looking pedigree
  • Using a dog because he’s from a bloodline that is very good in areas you want to improve
  • Using a dog because he “matches” up with your bitch, being extremely good where she may be faulty, and if he has some minor holes those are areas where your bitch is good
  • Using a dog because everyone else is using him
  • Using a dog because you want to do something "different"
  • Using a dog because you can't think of anyone else
These are just a few of the ways a stud dog  might be selected, but not necessarily things the bitch owner will admit to (or even be conscious of).  It IS fun to sit on the sidelines and see what develops, like watching an experiment.  Did the combination work as well as the breeder hoped, or was the litter as bad as you expected? (Those are not mutually exclusive!)  Maybe the breeder lucked out and got some nice pups or maybe it was a bust.  I've always figured that as long as a breeding produces healthy pups with good dispositions, and the breeder was objective about the pups, then it was a good litter and the breeder may have learned something.

I'm currently following the progress of several breedings that SEEMED as if they should work really well.  I'm not sure which of the above possibilities were used in the decision making, but it will be interesting to see the results.  I can sit back on the sidelines, with no work and no expense and watch the results.   I never get tired of that.  It's just the Breeder in me, I guess.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Summer Fun and Puppy Plans

All is well.  My apologies for the lack of blog posts, but since most of you are Facebook friends as well, you already know that everything is fine.

The dogs have had a great summer, with Max enjoying his swimming adventures in the Mississippi

River and Argus and Fern enjoying Sunday trips to the Dog Park, where they run with other dogs and splash in the pond.  Only Max actually swims - he thinks nothing of taking off across the river in pursuit of a stick - or as in the picture above, a floating log which he was determined to retrieve and bring back to shore.  Fern prefers splashing in the shallows, just like Argus does.

Not sure how I thought I was going to raise two youngsters that are only six months apart in age, since I live in the city and do NOT have a lot of yard.  It's surely a lot of work, but they are turning out well - and I'm staying fit with all the walking!  Both pups are high energy and enthusiastic, but very smart and willing.  Or at least Max is willing.  Fern is a bit of a hard head about some things, but is turning out to be an excellent housedog and companion.  Max is endlessly entertaining, and I don't regret for a moment that I kept him too.

Fern is off to a good start on her Championship with a major and a Group placing in just a few outings, but Max has had only one show weekend so far, and will miss the next one we had planned for him.  No hurry I guess, as it's a lot of work to show two dogs and I should concentrate on Fern anyway.  A weekend of UKC shows in September will give me a chance to put some work into Max, and perhaps he can go along to the Kansas Specialties.  Because I will be showing both Fern and Max in Bred By Exhibitor Class anyway, Max really doesn't have to be shown as a pup.

Current news involves Puppies!  We're planning a litter!  No, I don't plan to keep one, but do hope to co-own one locally.  We're doing a breeding for pedigree, combining an Argus daughter with a dog who has a very Paisley pedigree.  I'm trying to pick up some old pieces of the Paisley line, and the dog I will be breeding two is "very Paisley".  Although he does not carry a Paisley name, I co-bred him, and suggested the breeding to the friend who co-owns his dam, a Coral daughter. 

The mama-to-be came in season just this week, NOT very good timing on her part, but it is what it is.  She'll have to ride along with us next week when we go to the Amana shows, and the dog she will be bred to will meet us there as his owner is showing too.  At least that's the plan right now.  We'll see how this goes.  I don't like traveling with bitches in season, and it means that Max has to stay home.  Not enough room to carry four dogs, and not fair to a 9-month boy to have to travel with a bitch in season!