Every breeder is obliged to the breed as the sum of brood animals of today renders the basis for a good development in the future.As a breeder I am an important part,who takes part in keeping up and solidating the soundness of the breed in all its standard features.
For this both the stud owner aswell as the dam owner assume responsibility.Even if the studowner is not part of the breed regulations as a breeder, still his ACD has to meet the same health requirements like the bitch. He feels the same responsibility towards the breed like the owner of a future litter. If he feels, the bitch is not the right breeding partner for his male in the sense of health, temperament or conformation, he will deny the mating.
Which possibilities has a breeder? There is the choice between inbreeding, linebreeding or outcross.Inbreeding never should be practised by beginners.It can be both a blessing or a curse for your breeding. On the one side wanted features can get stronger in the genetic of a dog, but it can also be responsible for some undesirable developent in the breed, which is passed on nearly for ever recessively.
Inbreeding does not produce defects
A widely spread wrong idea about inbreeding is, that it makes defects. Inbreeding does not develop any kind of defects but only makes obvious what is in this particular line. By doubling the genes, the item will show while an individual gene is hiding it. Only if you make permanent inbreeding over a longer time, the puppies might loose their vitality.
Dangerous way of breeding
The quickest way to find out what the future breeding animals bear in their genetic, is an incest mating, f.ex. father to daughter or mother to son mating.As far as I know the ACD Clubs or Kennel Clubs forbids this method. Breeders from anglosaxian countries aswell as others therefore practise successfully linebreeding. It is a bit longer way to bring faults to light, but a possibility which is practised by many successful and experienced breeders.
The aspects in detail
Breeding partners with several common ancestors:
The breeder collected all available health information, also those which do not belong (so far) to the breeding order. We take as an example the spondylosis, a very painful illness of the spine. There is no doubt, that it is inherited. Only the exact inheritance ist not known yet.Here the breeder has to rely on what he noticed by himself on shows or other occasions or what he heard from experienced breeders/owners. The same is to think twice about the elbow dysplasie, which requires careful attention. Every single step means a controlled dropping on the front, which might be very painful if the dog has a severe ED and will lead to a change for the worse.A hip displasia, called HD, might be caused by different reasons. First the disposition, but one reason is the too little worming of puppies with the attack of growing worms,too rich puppy food, overweight or climbing stairs up and down several times per day.
Looking for a suitable and healthy mating partner, means studying his pedigree, if his bad hip results are either an individual event or is it going through all generations. That is a good reason to forget a mating with this stud.
Every breeder must have a comprehensive knowledge of both partnes of his planned litter. To this belongs also deafness (BAER test), also of siblings/other relatives/cryptorchism, NCL (Neural Ceroid Lipofuscinosis), PRA, Cataract (HC) status and more seldom eye illnesses.
A careful breeder lets his brood bitch or stud not only vet investigated for the presribed health test but also takes all other aspects into his consideration.Regarding the health of the future puppies there are no concessions possible!
Never want too much at once
If these investigations meet your expectations, you look for conformity in type
and size. Basically it means, that you never look for the contrary. A too low bitch, who is mated by a too big male, will have some big offspring and some too small ones and perhaps one ot two pups of a middle size.If the famili type can be recognized, you can start to look for improvement of smaller faults. Never try to eliminate more than one or two faults at the same time. It does not work. One by one is the device.
Let’s think, you want to achieve a longer upperarm with far behind reaching shoulderblade in your line and not always find random specimen in the whelping box.You look for a stud with a well strengthened upper arm angulation and who has proven his inheritance power in thiss respect.It is selfunderstood that he is correct in all other aspects.When the litter is born you look for the best front angulationed puppy and when that girl or boy is adult go back to a stud or dam from your own line.You see good results in breeding need patience and time.The chance to improve your offspring lies in the common ancestors.By this mating the genes for this disposition are doubled. Remember, at the same time also unwanted items are doubled, which have to be bred out.
Carefulness and the ability to self criticism are needed when you decide for a mating partner.
Similarity in type and easy to recognize
Typical Turrella male
If the litter of two far related ancestors (f.ex. grandsire to granddaughter) meets your expectations. it is recommendable to go back in the next generation to your own line.Thus the wanted characteristic will be anchored in your line.You choose again a far distance relativ from either father- or mother line.
Typical Pavesi male
Because you do want into a too narrow genepool and to widen it again, it is recommendable after some generations to make a total outcross.But that means also again, that beside wanted characteristics some new unwanted characteristics are crossed in the own line.
Typical Landmaster male It is absolutely necessary to go back to the own linebred This guarantees the family type aswell as the new characteristics.Time by time the linebred ACD get more and more similar to each other.
Some experienced breeders can already say beforehand, which kind of puppies will be born.Nevertheless a sufficient genepool must always be watched. That belongs also to the responsibility of a breeder.
Outcross – a game with questionmarks
2. Still there is the way of breeding, the outcross. Two not related ACDs are mated. The result is full of surprises. It can neither be foreseen in temperament, nor in health or in confirmation.The breeder who chooses this method of breeding really needs help from above or much luck.
A breed like the Cattle Dog, which has been bred exclusively for its herding qualities and the endurance and health, shows nowadays in the ring many different types.The required similarity in type must still be achieved by skilful breeding.So far we recognize in the showring too many too high ACD with coarse, heavy bones, who are not agile enough for herding, next to long-legged, specimen of nobility or low-legged ACD with too light bones, lacking power to control the bull. Heads are tending from too short stops til too long forefaces,from upright ears til too long ones and too sidewards, nearly hanging ears, spoiling the expression.
The two Welsh Corgi breeds, the Pembroke and the Cardigan, are good examples for the value of conformity in type.The Pems became quickly the darlings of English people because of being favoured by the English crown princess. They were often bred and shown, while their herding abilities were ignored. Today they are of stunning similarity,The Cardi was bred for a long time as farmers’ herding dogs.Shows did not really play a role.Comparing these two breeds today, after they have been bred for centuries according to their standard, the interested visitor in dog shows sees still different types in the Cardi ring.They still did not achieve the similarity of the Pems after so many years of breeding for the showring.
The Australian Cattle Dog stays, bred by outcross matings,still unalike in confirmation.The often stressed health of the ACD goes back to early Australian farmers and his use as herding dog.They needed a dog of excellent endurance and health. If he did not meet these expectations and could not work properly, he was shot. Thus only the best herding dogs were used for breeding.The successfull result is the modern Australian Cattle Dog of the ANKC and his offspring all over the world.
The conservation of the achievements and at the same time to strengthen a good balance in conformation, is judges’ and breeders’ task today and in the future.