Friday, October 24, 2008

Breeding ... The Good the Bad and the Fugly

The Australian Shepherd has been gaining status as one of the top sports dogs of our time. This breed is known for its versatility and ability to excel at most dog sports that focus on agility and speed. What many people forget is their need to be busy. These dogs require mental and physical stimulation and, being a herding breed, have a lot of prey drive. Some people aren't ready for the special needs of the Australian Shepherd.

The Good

Good #1
Below is what I would classify as a good breeder. Their dogs are all registered, have won ribbons, are well cared for and they don't breed as many puppies as their bitch (or bitches) can pop out! They breed for conformation.

Good #2
Just so you all don't think I am against breeding for specific traits, here is a breeder that I found that breeds for sports - kinringaussies ... a quote from their site is "Active in flyball, agility, obedience, conformation...breeding versatile dogs for great people!!" You will notice that all their dogs are registered, have also won ribbons, competed in shows and are well cared for.

The Bad
Bad #1
Now ... I only have one question ... Why would you breed Australian Shepherd / Border Collie Cross dogs on purpose? Apparantly this breeder thought it was a good mix! There are so many that are bred by an "oops" that breeding this mix on purpose just doesn't make sense!

Bad #2
Next breeder to avoid would be this one - O'Neill Horse Farms. They have many dogs listed as "Some of our breeding stock" ... does that mean you have more breeding dogs not listed?? As far as I can tell from the website, not one of them is registered and not one has done anything exceptional other than have pretty colours.

I have emailed the people to find out if these dogs are registered and asked to see their pedigree (as is recommended on their site). If I hear back from them and there is some info to support their claims then I will retract my opinion on this one.


Ok - so here's some Fuglies from Maddenstables. Check out the pictures of their breeding stock! Do you think they could have at least brushed their dogs before taking the pictures?? There are a few dogs with mud and shavings all over. There is one bitch (Arrie) that looks like she hasn't been brushed in months - there are clumps of hair falling off!! Not to mention one of their studs (Marshall) that has thinning hair in large spots - almost looks mangey!?

Their Horsetopia ads certainly don't show us some nice quality puppies. It says they have champion bloodlines, but there is no mention of the registration numbers.

The obvious breeder to avoid? That would be this one! First hint? If the breeder can't afford his own website, then something is wrong. Next hint? The puppy is $150 USD. No papers, no docked (bob) tail.


SquirrelGurl said...

Well written.

It's amazing how many people come home with a puppy with little or no research.

I own a sheltie and I once encountered a couple with a 12 week sheltie puppy who asked me what breed my dog was! When I replied that he was a sheltie the wife got a horrified look and said the pet store never said they were long haired! We'll have to shave her.. I will NOT have a long haired dog.

I wanted to take that puppy home with me, I can only hope things turned out ok for her.

And BTW- I am totally on board with your "a tired dog is a happy dog." I believe in that with all my heart. I think so many dog problems would be alleviated if people took the time to exercise their pets.

Barb said...

Aaaahh... the old "champion bloodlines" scam. These breeders will point to a pedigree that has a few Champions or otherwise titled dogs 3 or 4 or 5 generations back - and NOTHING any closer with a title - and call that a "Champion bloodline" or "Champion pedigree".
And unfortunately most people buy that! People are SO uninformed when they set out to buy a puppy - it's really sad.

BrandytheGreat said...

10 Promises to My Dog.
That's a great movie.