Winner of Westminster Show 2013

Winner of Westminster Show 2013

Posted in Shows | Leave a comment

Primary Lens Luxation/ Animal Health Trust

AHTlogoPrimary Lens Luxation (PLL) is a well-recognised, painful and blinding inherited eye condition that affects many breeds of dog, particularly terrier and terrier-type breeds including (but not restricted to) Miniature bull terriers, Tibetan terriers, Jack and Parson Russell terriers, Lancashire Heelers and Chinese Crested dogs, also the Australian Cattle Dog, Jagd Terrier, Patterdale Terrier, Rat Terrier, Sealyham Terrier, Tenterfield Terrier, Toy Fox Terrier, Volpino Italiano, Welsh Terrier, Wire-haired Fox Terrier and Yorkshire Terrier.

In affected dogs the zonular fibres which support the lens breakdown or disintegrate, causing the lens to fall into the wrong position within the eye. If the lens falls into the anterior chamber of the eye glaucoma and loss of vision can quickly result.

Scientists at the AHT have identified a mutation that is associated with the development of PLL in several breeds of dog. The DNA test we are now offering examines the DNA from each dog being tested for the presence or absence of this precise mutation. It is thus a ‘mutation-based test’ and not a ‘linkage-based test’

Breeders will be sent results identifying their dog as belonging to one of three categories:
CLEAR: these dogs have two normal copies of DNA. Our research has demonstrated clear dogs will not develop PLL as a result of the mutation we are testing for, although we cannot exclude the possibility they might develop PLL due to other causes, such as trauma or the effects of other, unidentified mutations.

CARRIER: these dogs have one copy of the mutation and one normal copy of DNA. Our research has demonstrated that carriers have a very low risk of developing PLL. The majority of carriers do not develop PLL during their lives but a small percentage do. We currently estimate that between 2% – 20% of carriers will develop the condition, although we believe the true percentage is nearer to 2% than 20%. We do not currently know why some carriers develop the condition whereas the majority do not, and we advise that all carriers have their eyes examined by a veterinary ophthalmologist every 6- 12 months, from the age of 2, throughout their entire lives.

GENETICALLY AFFECTED: these dogs have two copies of the mutation and will almost certainly develop PLL during their lifetime. We advise that all genetically affected dogs have their eyes examined by a veterinary ophthalmologist every 6 months, from the age of 18 months, so the clinical signs of PLL are detected as early as possible.

Breeding Advice
Our research has also demonstrated that the frequency of the PLL mutation is extremely high in the PLL-affected breeds that we have studied in depth. This means that allowing only CLEAR dogs to breed could have a devastating effect on breed diversity and substantially increase the likelihood of new inherited diseases emerging. Therefore, we strongly advise breeders to consider all their dogs for breeding, regardless of their PLL genotype. GENETICALLY AFFECTED and CARRIER dogs can be bred with, but should only be bred to DNA tested, CLEAR dogs. All puppies from any litter that has at least one CARRIER parent should be DNA tested, so that the CARRIERS can be identified and followed clinically throughout their lives. This practise should be followed for at least one or two generations, to allow the PLL mutation to be slowly eliminated from the population without severely reducing the genetic diversity of breeds at risk.

Frequently Asked Questions. If you have any questions about the PLL test please see if you can find an answer in our list of FAQ’s on our website PLL Genetics

Samples submitted should be cheek swabs ( a non-invasive sampling method). Sampling kits are obtainable from the Animal Health Trust webshop AHT DNA Testing. Further information can be obtained by emailing e-mail

Share this with:

Posted in Health | Leave a comment

Perfect Teeth for Perfect Showdogs

Beautiful and healthy

Presenting valuable show dogs at national or international Kennel Club meetings or Dog Shows is a full-time job: not only must the four-legged candidates be healthy, in top-shape and perfect form – also cosmetical aspects play an important role to win the Show and be a CHAMPION!

No Dog Show allows unhealthy dogs to be presented in the ring, and every effort must be taken to avoid any possible hazard of spreading infectious diseases between the show dogs. Effective control mechanisms, mostly under the supervision of veterinarians, are established at least in the larger and more important shows, to sort out dogs with diseases, fever or non-tolerable behaviour.
But who looks into the mouth?

Very often the judges inspect the oral cavity very meticulously, because a healthy, clean and correctly developed dentition and skull is a paramount part of the general appearance and status of any candidate. Skull, alveolar bones and dentition have to match the breed “Standard” of every registered breed. Missing or discoloured teeth, covered with slimy unhygienic masses or unpleasant odour from the mouth would not be a favourable precondition for a successful presentation.

Malinois 7 Ja  no plaque
© Roger Sjølstad UP: This 7-year old Malinois shows signs of use and wear (abrasions) but his teeth are clean, gums and periodontium are in excellent condition.

Gebiss schmutzig

© Roger Sjølstad DOWN:An “average mouth”: no signs of severe gingivitis or periodontitis are present, but unattractive discolorations and biofilms (plaque) are obvious; not good enough for a CHAMPION.

An unhealthy and unattractive dentition is in most cases caused by periodontal disease, which is the most common of all diseases in mammals. More than 80 % of all adult individuals – may that be cats, dogs or humans – suffer from it. The prevention of periodontal disease is a life-long struggle which includes home-care, appropriate nutrition and – if unavoidable – professional veterinary treatment.
As always – prevention is better than cure

Only approximately 10 % of pet dogs receive daily oral hygiene, this means that many dogs suffer from a very poor condition in their mouth, continuous active infection, associated with permanent pain, finally loss of function due to lost teeth and or even organ infection.

As a precondition for successful work with breeding dogs and show dogs, owners of these animals have a by far higher motivation (and education) and take good care of the overall health and dental condition of their precious dogs. Regular tooth brushing, appropriate nutrition, systematical controls and health checks at the veterinarians are of paramount importance. For every showdog, daily tooth-brushing with special toothbrushes and tooth-pastes is highly recommended. Never use human tooth-pastes, they are not only badly accepted by dogs, but also contain ingredients, which can damage the gums. If discolorations are detected, tartar-build up or halitosis is present, the veterinarian should be contacted.
Bad teeth – bad ranking

Not too long before important shows, the dog should be seen by a vet and – if necessary – get a complete dental check and prophylaxis , which means a thorough cleaning and removal of all soft biofilms (Plaque) and hard mineralised debris on the dental surfaces (Tartar, calculus). The teeth should be polished after cleaning to avoid rough dental surfaces after the procedures, which would allow new plaque to recolonise again very quickly, making repeated procedures necessary year after year. Dental plaque is highly pathogenic and the primary cause of both gingivitis and periodontitis or even tooth loss. In addition these aggressive plaque bacteria can enter the blood stream and be spread across the whole body, which may cause septicaemia and organ disease.

The accumulation of dental plaque on the dental surfaces is the primary cause of Gingivitis and Periodontitis, thus the key for success in preventing such periodontal conditions is control of the plaque -> no plaque – no gingivitis/periodontitis!

The benefit of professional periodontal therapy is short-lived unless followed by effective home care. Regular tooth brushing is the best method to achieve that, but both owners and dogs are not always able to handle this, also oral medications can help to reduce plaque.

The role of nutrition

Foods which encourage plaque build-up should be avoided. This includes snacks between meals, high carbohydrate foods such as table scraps, sweets and others unnatural food for dogs. Feeding specially formulated nutrition (specific dental diets, diets with an included dental benefit across the range, dental chewing sticks) is an additional effective way to reduce the amount of plaque in the oral cavity.

I recommend:

Regular professional check-ups and cleanings at your vet, once or twice a year
Daily tooth brushing and chewing toys
Feeding a diet that reduces plaque and tartar build-up Peter Fahrenkrug
Dentist, Veterinarian and expert in Veterinary Dentistry

Dr. Dr. Fahrenkrug is one of the internationally leading experts in canine dentistry.

This educational article has been brought to you by EUKANUBA

Posted in Health | Leave a comment

We Are Not Judging Statues

by Lisa Dubé Forman/The CANINE CHRONICLE ·

In my brief five years of judging, I cannot count how many times I have communicated to exhibitors that I am not judging a statue. I offer this as relaxing encouragement to them while they attempt to correct their dog’s stance as it is being examined. However, many handlers persist, sometimes in vain, to replace dog’s feet in positions that the dog has already decided were uncomfortable. Immediately after a correction, many dogs will then go on to move their other feet. At this point, it is my policy to recommend to the exhibitor not to bother fidgeting with the dog, as I politely tell the handler I can feel everything I need to feel, regardless if the dog has moved its leg or shifted its weight. Simply, I am judging a live animal and not a statue. Some exhibitors will listen, others persist perhaps because they perceive the dog’s movement as an affront to their handling skills. For clarity, references to handler is meant to be all-embracing, for any person showing a dog.

Here on this point, I offer a suggestion to exhibitors. I typically walk my dogs into their show stack. I usually do not fidget with their feet unless they are in an exaggerated stance such as “posting.” This allows the dog to feel comfortable with the process of examination, especially the Sighthound breeds who can be more averse to a stranger’s approach and hands-on exam. Moreover, walking the dog into a stance is much more relaxing as the dog usually will land and stand over their ground in a comfortable position. Remember, the sole purpose for dog shows is not a contest as to which dog can stand still the longest, in some cases in an excessively exaggerated posture. The purpose of a dog show is to select and adjudicate over the best of the stock to perpetuate the breed. I will quickly digress here to expound on my remark about exaggerated postures. One such profile example is frequently seen in Afghan Hounds, with many of the dog’s rear feet stacked well behind the seat bones of the hindquarters. If you dropped a plumb line from the Ischial Tuberosity (rear seat bones), it is supposed to touch the front of the toes of the rear feet, however, due to exaggeration in stance or construction, that plumb line, in some cases, is far forward of the rear feet. Commonly, when stacked in such a manner and before the dog can move, he must first bring the rear legs back up under his pelvis, with some returning to a normal stance before stepping off. Other dogs, while standing naturally or even four square, are able to lead off immediately with their front leg. If such exaggerated stances were correct for the structure of that breed, then that dog would have no need to bring its rear up and under him first before he could lead off on a front leg.

Not all exhibitors are skilled and simply fussing. My biggest point of disagreement while observing some exhibitors is the clumsy effort to correct a stack by reaching over the back, grabbing the loin and pulling the dog’s hindquarters towards themselves. This action does not achieve a relaxed stance in which the judge can reflect upon and appreciate a lovely silhouette. Instead, this grappling produces a dog who was just dragged into position and who now is flexed and tense. Never mind it is very uncomfortable for observers – effectively making us cringe – and usually the handler does not stop there. After they drag the back end of the dog over to a side profile, they begin wrestling feet into place. This struggle is no more graceful than the first as the exhibitor pushes and pulls, then drags feet backwards and forward. Sometimes it is comical as the judge gives up or is impatient and approaches the dog while the exhibitor is still wrestling with the feet, head bent down with their buttocks up in the air. A solution for inexperienced exhibitors is taking five minutes every day to work with the dog by teaching it to walk forward into a stack. The stack does not have to be perfect because, again, we are not judging sculpture. Teach or train the dog on its show lead — not a walking lead so they can differentiate when they are working — and train the dog to walk slowly forward as they place their front legs straight up and down with elbows directly under their shoulder blades, their hocks perpendicular to the ground. When showing, if one leg is back somewhat, don’t fret, leave it. If the dog’s stance is still unacceptable to you, correct it after the judge has completed their exam and not while the judge is examining the dog. After the judge is finished, quickly readjust or if it is a body shift then slowly walk the dog forward one or more steps to the desirable stance. Every judge should allow the exhibitor the few extra seconds, if the handler chooses to do so, to walk the dog forward a step to correct a bad stack. This is courteous to do so since it is the exhibitors hard-earned money paying the judge for the evaluation, not visa versa. Likewise, walking into a stack is a bonus for bona-fide judges, those not looking at their wristwatch, as most dogs tend to relax and settle into themselves quickly. No matter the handler’s choice, just please stop wrestling.

Conformation purebred dog events have been transformed into a showing and grooming contest. Today we observe many firmly established handling habits. Exhibitors will place huge emphasis on a dog’s stack while on the table or ramp. If the dog moves, the exhibitor constantly makes corrections, as if the judge will not be able to feel the placement, angulation and length of the bones and muscling, or quality of coat if a foot is out of place. Moreover, exhibitors need to remember that judging does not take place on these elevated platforms, only examinations. Dogs are only judged on the ground. If the opposite were true then each of these dogs would be exhibited on a table or ramp in the ring always. Perhaps this habit has manifested itself so widely because exhibitors follow the lead of many professional handlers who have perfected the ability to emphasize perfect, statuesque stacks. Consider an exhibitors reaction the instant a dog moves their head to look around while stacked in the lineup. Many have a death grip on the muzzle. A reminder to everyone in our sport, dogs should not receive extra consideration for being able to stand still the longest.

Other established and trying habits include handlers overemphasizing certain breeds abundance of thin, loose skin, wrinkles or folds. Short-coated breeds are “what you see is what you get.” Still, we have exhibitors over-accentuating by grasping and pulling the skin up and forward. The judge is not blind and can clearly see and feel the skin’s looseness, along with scapula placement, without the aid of the handler. As an extra factor, I have heard disapproving comments by spectators. Although we seasoned fanciers understand this does not hurt the dog, no amount of reassurance can change some people’s minds. Taking into account the purebred dog controversy in place today, we can do away with such unnecessary elaboration. Another annoying and dispensable habit during examination are handler’s stretching dog’s neck, pulling upwards, almost lifting the dog’s front off the ground and then flipping the ears over both eyes — all in a grandstanding effort to feature the neck on a smooth or short-coated breed. Speaking plainly, a judge is quite capable of discerning a proper neck without all this dramatizing, especially since most are approved to judge heavy-coated and long-coated breeds. If the judge requires or encourages such elaboration on a neck then they should reevaluate their role in our sport.

Dog shows were not meant to be a contest of animal or people showmanship. Our shows were not created or designed to determine who is the more flamboyant handler, for instance the handler standing out nearly four feet in front of the dog waving a piece of bait in their free hand. Some handlers claim that the dog who is posed looking very much like a sculptured bronze is, indeed, in a natural stance. Occasionally, this may be true and usually can be determined by directing the handler to move the dog around to the center of the ring and having them stop without touching the dog. Few times will the dog land as they were previously stacked. Many times, the dog will land and stand much more naturally, which a true breed expert will appreciate moreso than an over-dramatized stance. In truth, show dogs increasingly now are trained to stop and self-stack in dramatic poses without interference by the handler. Yet, what I would find most telling is if we were to see the same dog running and playing in the yard or field they most likely stop and stand in an entirely different manner contrary to dog show pageantry.

Aficionado judges appreciate the dog without the glamour and fanfare. An enhancement to this and what I consider exciting is to find a truly well-made dog who feels good under your hand who may not be the showiest entry in the ring but who epitomizes the breed standard. To be able to “find” a great dog in the show ring is the ultimate reward. My usual response is to quietly laugh when I read judges interviews or hear their commentary on dogs they have awarded. I am sure you all are familiar with, “The dog gave it their all,”; “The dog asked for it and could not be denied,”; “The dog showed beautifully,” ; “The dog was so on,” ; “The dog has attitude.” Conversely, “The dog did not perform that well,”; “The dog could have been more on.”

Taking into account these critiques, it is no wonder almost all exhibitors fret constantly about a misplaced foot, constantly adjusting and readjusting legs, death grips on the muzzles, stretching out necks, pulling the skin over the dog’s face and so on. These dispiriting comments all highlight the non-essentials of our sport. Why place more value on the dog flying around the ring at the end of their lead, many at incorrect speeds? Why do judges value the dog in an aggrandized, statuesque stance moreso than its competitor(s) who may fidget but who stands over their ground in a comfortable, confident manner sans embellishment? Doesn’t breed type and symmetry trounce being overdone and flamboyant? We should all worry about the general direction in which our sport has developed. It is deeply concerning and saddening for many veterans. Over the years, our sport has been steered towards glorifying and worshipping the most highly trained and unflinching statues. This is a show with live animals, not a statue exhibition. Though I would not nor am I suggesting a dog should be penalized for being perfectly trained and very stylishly shown, at the same time a judge should not bestow additional merit on this dog over its competitors based upon this ability to attract, in many cases, undue attention. However, we are very much aware of this or similar preferences by some judges through their critiques. Absent from reviews are conclusions on a specimen’s structural integrity, the virtues of that dog’s priceless breed type expounding on the near flawless shape, describing the breed’s topline and underline, discussing the prosternum, its fill and relative station and length of ribbing. Going into detail about the dog’s diameter and length of bone, the breed standard’s ideal length, strength and breadth of loin or the opposite, well-coupled with strong breadth of loin, or remarks on the symmetry of the dog’s conforming length and placement of scapula/humerus in relation to the femur/tibia, or any mention of superior muscling. On occasion, we do hear vague comments about headpieces as they are first discernible and easiest to describe. All the same, the comments provide little insight such as, “What a lovely head.” We do not read instructive remarks about proper length of planes with degree of desired stop, eye set and shape, width or shape of skull and muzzle.

Overall, in place of educational particulars, we are provided nebulous, frivolous comments. This may be due in part to judges’ inexperience with formulating and expressing their opinions, remarks and reactions to the dogs. Many quality judges with a keen eye instinctively know a good or great dog when they see one and have trouble conveying why, then there are other judges who skate by with a quick but insubstantial remark about, “how spot on” a dog was in the ring. What is the value of saying this? How does that have anything to do with the breed standard for which the dog is judged? It is no wonder that our sport is filled with uninstructed, naïve exhibitors and breeders. If they hear or read a judge’s explanations about the winning dogs and all they are offered are the aforementioned, meaningless comments, then it should come as no surprise that our sport has devalued. These comments undermine the importance of, the genuine purpose of our sport, why and how it began. It does not have to be this way. We judges can effect change, have a marked influence on breeder and exhibitor priorities which, in turn, will return focus on breeds’ standards of excellence. As I am very fond of repeating, we need to get back to the basics.

Posted in Judging | Leave a comment




Standard Colors

    Black ticked
    called “BLUE”
    called “RED”

Non-Standard Colors


As more research is conducted in the field of (color) genetics, more information gathered and more of the
‘unknowns’ are ‘known’ — this website will be updated to reflect that information.


chromosome: The nuclear structure which houses (contains) the genetic information. Chromosomes exist in

pairs and therefore there are always two copies of a given gene.

gene: a unit of inheritance

locus (-ci): the position of a gene on a chromosome. Every gene has a specific locus

genotype: the genetic make-up of an individual

phenotype: that part of the physical appearance of an organism which depends on gene action

homozygous: the condition when both alleles of a gene pair are identical

heterozygous: the condition when both alleles of a gene pair are different

dominant: term describing a gene which can produce a phenotype when present only once; also the

phenotype which results

recessive: term describing a gene which must be present twice to produce a phenotype; also refers to the

phenotype which results

wild: the “normal” phenotype

mutant: the non-normal phenotype; is a relative term (relative to the population from which the organism


color genes: genes that affect the pigment color of hairs

pattern genes: genes that affect the distribution of a particular color.

Different terms are sometimes used for the same genetic colors, depending on breed and sometimes country too.
In Dobermans, the dilute brown, is called Isabella. In Border Collies, the dilute brown, is called Lilac. In Kelpies, the
dilute brown, is called Fawn. A dog that is genetically ‘recessive red’ (“e/e”) is known as yellow in some breeds and
red in others. Brown is called chocolate by many and is also referred to as red. In the ACD breed, the ticked-
black/tan is known as blue and the ticked-sable is called red. This is confusing at times.


Melanin is the substance that gives a dog’s hair its color. There are two distinct types of melanin in the dog —
eumelanin and phaeomelanin.

Eumelanin is, in the absence of other modifying genes, black or dark brown.

Phaeomelanin is, in its unmodified form, a yellowish color.

Melanin is produced by cells called melanocytes. These are found in the skin, hair bulbs (from which the hairs grow)
and other places. Melanocytes within the hair follicles cause melanin to be added to the hair as it grows. However,
melanin is not added at a constant ‘rate’. At the very tip of the hair, eumelanin production is usually most intense,
resulting in the darker tip.

A protein called the Agouti protein has a major effect on the amount of melanin injected into the growing hair. The
Agouti protein causes a banding effect on the hair: it causes a fairly sudden change from the production of
eumelanin (black/brown pigment) to phaeomelanin (red/yellow pigment). An example of this coloration would be like
the color of a wild rabbit. The term ‘Agouti’ actually refers to a South American rodent that exemplifies this type of

The Extension Locus – E

This refers to the extension of eumelanin over the dog’s body. The dominant form, “E”, is normal extension. The
recessive form, “e”, is non-extension. When a dog is homozygous for non-extension (e/e), its coat will be entirely
red/yellow (phaeomelanin based). All dogs that have a brown (chocolate) coat will have at least one “E” allele,
because of the production of eumelanin.

The way to tell the difference between an Agouti red/yellow and an Extension (e/e) red/yellow dog — is the Agouti
red/yellow almost always have some black/brown hair in the coat (usually around the ears and tail) and the
Extension (e/e) dog won’t. Another way is the Agouti red/yellow must have at least one (“A^y”) allele and can carry at
most one other agouti allele, the Extension (e/e) can carry any two Agouti alleles (not necessarily “A^y”).


The dominant form of black: completely dominates all formation of phaeomelanin pigment. In the past, dominant
black had been placed at the head of the Agouti series (symbol “A^s”). Now, it has been proven to be part of a
separate series, the “K” series, and not at the Agouti locus at all.

Dominant black (K) is epistatic to whatever is found at the Agouti locus (simply means that it causes the Agouti allele
to act differently from what it normally would), however; “e/e” is dominant to “K” at the E locus.

When “K” is in the dominant form, “K/K” or “K/k”, there would be no expression from the A Locus and the color is
dependant on what is at the E Locus.

When “K” is in the homozygous recessive form “k/k”, the coat color will depend on what is located on the “E” and “A”

Dominant “K” codes for both dominant black and brindle in decreasing order of dominance:

K — dominant black (does not allow the A Locus alleles to be expressed)
k^br — brindle (expressed when A Locus alleles are expressed)
k — normal (allows the A Locus alleles to be expressed)

A dog that is:

K/K or K/k — dominant black; dominant black carrying recessive black
k^br/k^br — brindled
k^br/k — brindled, carrying recessive black
k/k — ‘normal’ (recessive black)

Brindling is ‘stripes’ of eumelanin-based (can be modified by the genes at the B and D Locus, so the color could be
black, blue, chocolate or fawn) hairs in areas that are otherwise phaeomelanin based. In order to produce the
brindle color, at least one parent MUST be a brindle. Brindle is dominant to its absence, so only one copy is
needed. If a person has a brindle colored pup for sale and there are no brindle colors anywhere in the pedigree,
then the sire that is reported on the registration papers — genetically can not be the (true) sire. There is an
exception to this if the dog is “e/e”, he can be a carrier of brindle.

It is thought that the three loci E, K and A act together as follows:

If the dog is “e/e” at the E locus, and at the K locus, it is “K”, “k^br” or “k”, its coat will be entirely red/yellow
(phaeomelanin based);

If the dog is E/E or E/e at the E locus, and at the K locus, it is “K/K” or “K/k”, its coat will be entirely dominant black
(eumelanin based) [**NOTE: the phenotypic color will depend on what is at the B, D, C and M Locus];

If the dog is E/E or E/e at the E locus, and at the K locus, it is “k^br/k^br” or “k^br/k” it will be brindled with the color of
the phaeomelanin part of the brindling affected by the Agouti alleles present;

If the dog is E/E or E/e at the E locus, and at the K locus, it is “k/k” the distribution of eumelanin and phaeomelanin
will be determined solely by the Agouti alleles present.

The Agouti Locus – A

Simply, this is how the pigment is distributed on the dog’s body and hair shaft.

The Agouti locus controls the formation of the Agouti protein, that in turn is one of the mechanisms that controls
the replacement of eumelanin with phaeomelanin in the growing hair. The alleles of the Agouti locus can affect not
just whether or not the eumelanin — phaeomelanin shift occurs, but also where on the dog’s body this happens.

Two promoters are generally associated with the “wild type” version of the agouti gene.

Cycling Promoter
Ventral Promoter

The Cycling Promoter produces a banded hair with a black tip and yellow middle over the entire body. If only the
action of this promoter is disrupted, the hair color on the dog’s back will be black and its belly and inside of the legs
will be yellow. This produces the black and tan color.

The Ventral Promoter dictates that there will be only yellow color in the hair on the belly. The animal will have black
banded hair on the dorsal (back) side and paler yellow hair on the ventral (belly) side. If only the action of this
promoter is disrupted, the hair color on the dog will be banded over its entire body. This is said to be solid agouti

If something inactivates the agouti protein, or if both promoters are disrupted, the animal will appear to be solid

If a mutation occurs at one of these Promoters, this can cause the yellow to be expressed over most of the body.

NOTE: In part of a series on Dog Coat Color Genetics by Sheila Schmutz, she states that recent studies
show that the agouti signal peptide (ASIP) competes with melanocyte stimulating hormone (MSH), which produces
eumelanin pigments, to bind on the melanocortin receptor and must sometimes win. Both the E allele and Em allele
are responsive to agouti or melanocortin binding in dogs. However dogs that are ee have a mutation in MC1R and
produce only phaeomelanin. The dog’s agouti genotype doesn’t affect its coat color, which will be some shade of
cream, yellow or red.

To further complicate things, agouti has 2 separate and somewhat distant promoters. Roughly, one seems to
control ventral or belly color and the other dorsal or back color. The simplest way to “see” this is on a black and
tan dog……the back is black from eumelanin pigment being made and the belly is tan or red from phaeomelanin
pigment being made.

The agouti gene has been mapped in the dog and DNA studies to determine which patterns are under the control
of this gene in the dog are in progress. This gene undoubtedly has several alleles, but how many is still an open
question. Some have been identified using DNA studies and tests for agouti phenotypes in some breeds may
become available soon. Although several books attempt to state the dominance hierarchy of the agouti alleles,
since no breed has all the alleles, it is not possible to know this for sure. Most books suggest that it is aw > ay > at
> a. Breeding data and DNA data from our collaborative study with Dr. Greg Barsh’s group at Stanford supports
this. However the data confirm pairwise dominance/recessive relationships in different families…….not the entire
hierarchy in one family.

Decreasing in order of dominance: (**sable may be dominant over wolf in some breeders)

“a^w”, ‘wolf’ color – This is like “a^y” but the tan is replaced with a pale gray/cream color and the hairs usually

have several bands of light and dark color, not just the black tip of sable. Example would be Keeshond, Siberian
and Norwegian Elkhound.

“a^y”, ‘sable’ – also known as ‘dominant yellow’ or ‘golden sable’. This results in an essentially red/yellow

phenotype, but the hair tips are black (eumelanin). The extent of the eumelanin tip varies considerably from lighter
sables (where just the ear tips are black, called “Clear Sables”) to darker sables (where much of the body is dark,
called “Shaded Sables”).

“a^s”, ‘saddle’ – Eumelanin is restricted to the back and side regions, somewhat like the black/tan (“a^t”) allele


“a^t”, ‘tan points’ – This is primarily a solid colored dog with tan (phaeomelanin) “points” above the eyes,

muzzle, chest, stomach and lower legs. The hue can range from a pale biscuit to a rich ginger to a golden copper
in color. Commonly seen in many breeds like hounds, Dobermans, Rottweilers and Kelpies. In breeds that have
the Irish spotting, along with tan points, this is known as “tri” colored (Australian Shepherds and Border Collies).

“a” – last of the Agouti series is recessive black. When a dog is homozygous for recessive black (a/a), there will

be no red/yellow (phaeomelanin) in its coat (unless “e/e” is present, which is epistatic to the Agouti series).
Examples of breeds that show to be recessive black are German Shepherd and Shetland Sheepdog.

BLACK or BROWN (CHOCOLATE) – B GENE LOCUS: (pigment color)

This gene, when in the homozygous recessive form, has a lightening effect on eumelanin (black-based colors)
only. It has no effect on phaeomelanin (red-based colors).

B/B or B/b – black
b/b – brown

It is believed that the Brown Locus codes for an enzyme, tyrosinase-related protein 1 (TYRP1), which catalyzes the
final step in eumelanin production, changing the final intermediate brown pigment (dihydroxyindole) to black
pigment. SO, ALL dogs start as BROWN and after the final step — this directs the color to be black.

When brown (b/b) is expressed, it means that the final step in eumelanin production has not been completed and
the pigment remains brown. The brown color is not a genetic defect.

When the alleles are in the homozygous or heterozygous dominant form of B/B or B/b, the color and pigment
(nose, eye rims and lips) remains (or directs the color to be) black.

When the alleles are in the homozygous recessive form (b/b), the color and pigment will be brown. This just means
that the final step in eumelanin production of changing brown to black did not occur. Phaemelanin (yellow/red
[e/e]) is not affected. BUT, in the e/e colored dog, if the dog is also b/b; they will be either red or yellow and will
have brown pigment (nose, eye rims and lips). The pigment granules produced by “bb” are smaller, rounder in
shape, and appear lighter than pigment granules in “B” dogs. The iris of the eye is also lightened.


(dilution of pigment)
Not found (has been bred out) in the ACD or ASTCD breed.
This gene has an effect on both eumelanin and phaeomelanin.

D/D or D/d – it allows for full color (black or chocolate).
d/d – homozygous recessive form dilutes black (eumelanin) to blue, red to cream, and chocolate to a dull flat
color (some call it milk chocolate color).


The effects of these 2 genes, when combined, form a range of 4 eumelanistic (‘black-based’) colors:

The color of the pup/dog (Eumelanistic Color):
B/B D/D or B/b D/d will be black in color

B/B d/d or B/b d/d will be blue in color

b/b D/D or b/b D/d will be brown/Chocolate (called red in Kelpies)

b/b d/d will be flat or dull diluted brown/chocolate (called fawn in Kelpies).


The “S” series alleles appear to be incompletely dominant. In dogs it is thought there are four alleles that deal with
white spotting:

“S” – ‘solid/self color’. Most dogs that are homozygous for “S/S” have no white hair at all, or possible a tiny

amount, like a white tail tip.

“s^i” – ‘irish spotting’. This involves white spotting on most parts of the coat, but not crossing the back beyond

the withers. This color pattern is evident on the Border Collie, Australian Shepherd and other breeds that have the
white collar. New research has proven that the white undersides of the Border Collie is dictated by a different

“s^p” – ‘piebald’. The white is more extensive than irish spotting, and often crosses the back. It is sometimes

confused with the merle pattern. This coloration usually has large colored spots on the body. The white covers
approximately 50% of the body.

“s^w” – ‘extreme white piebald’. A dog that is homozygous for “s^w” will be almost entirely white, like some Bull

Terriers. The Australian Cattle Dog, the coloration that is called “Blue”, and “Red” by the ACD and ASTCD
breeders/owners, is really the extreme piebald pattern that is also affected by the ticking gene; giving
the coloration a blue appearance. This allelic pair is also responsible for the “color headed” white dogs. Often
times, along with a colored head, there will also be a colored spot near the tail (called the caudle spot).


A dominant mutation that causes the presence of color (flecks of color) in areas that have been made white by the
effect of alleles in the white spotting (S) series.

T/T – ticked (incompletely dominant to non-ticked). This gene is what gives the ACD and ASTCD their
unique coloration.
t/t – non-ticked


(development of pigment)
The intensity of melanin production in the coat hairs is affected by this gene. The dominant form, “C”, is termed ‘full

At this locus, almost all dogs are “C/C”, or full color.

The lower series alleles, in order of decreasing dominance:

“c^ch” – Chinchilla — It is an incomplete dominant gene. Chinchilla lightens most or all of the red/yellow

(phaeomelanin) with little or no effect on black/brown (eumelanin). It turns black/tan to black/silver. In dogs, this
gene lightens yellow, tan or reddish phaeomelanin to cream. Since there is little effect on the dark eumelanin,
phaeomelanin is effected more strongly than eumelanin and brown. Dilute eumelanin (blue) is effected more
strongly than dark (black) eumelanin. When chinchilla is present, it dilutes brown to milk chocolate, blue to silver
and red to a butter cream color.

NOTE: Newer research indicates a chinchilla-like mutation occurs in dogs, although, tyrosinase activity hasn’t
been shown to be connected. Therefore, some other factor may be involved and the dog chinchilla allele may not
belong in this series. Also, there may be more than one form of the chinchilla gene.

“c^e” – is ‘extreme dilution’. It causes tan to become almost white. It is thought that the white labrador might be

“c^e” with another, lower, “C” series allele. The “c^e” allele may be responsible for producing white hair, while
allowing full expression of dark nose and eye pigment. West Highland Terriers are thought to be e/e c^e/c^e.

“c^b” – or blue-eyed albino. This is an entirely white coat with a very small amount of residual pigment in the

eyes, giving pale blue eyes. It is also called platinum or silver. This allelic pair could be responsible for the white
coated, pink skinned, blue-eyed Doberman’s.

“c^c” – true pink-eyed albino. Has not been seen in dogs.


This is a dominant mutant gene that causes the dog to gray with age. The pigmented hairs are progressively
replaced with unpigmented hairs.


(ACD and ASTCD do not have the merle pattern)

The only way a merle colored pup can be produced is if at least one parent is merle. Some breeders are of the
understanding that the merle gene is a recessive gene and is carried from generation to generation. This is not
correct. The merle gene is not carried, meaning — the dog is either a merle or is not a merle. There are no
exceptions to this law of genetics (for now, at least, until further research is conducted).

If someone tells you that they have a litter of merled colored pups and there are no merles for many generations in
their bloodlines — then these merled pups were not sired by the sire the owner thinks there were. In fact, he
should look for the hole in the fence!

The merle gene is an incomplete dominant or a gene with intermediate expression and is another dilution gene.
Instead of diluting the whole coat it causes a patchy dilution, with a black coat becoming gray patched with black.
Brown becomes dilute brown patched with chocolate, sienna, brick, and various diluted brown colors. While sable
merles can be distinguished from sables, this is sometimes very difficult because the merle coloration looks like —
to just slightly different from — the sable color. The merling is clearly visible at birth, but may fade to little more than
mottling of the ear tips as an adult. Merling on the tan points of a merle black and tan is not immediately obvious,
either, though it does show if the mask factor is present. Eyes of a merle dog are sometimes blue or marbled
(brown and blue segments in the eye).

A “m/m” (homozygous recessive) dog is normal color (no merling). A “M/m” (heterozygous) dog is a merle. A
“M/M” (homozygous dominant) dog, known as a double merle (from a merle to merle mating), has much more
white than is normal for the breed and may have hearing loss, vision problems including small or missing eyes, and
possible infertility. The health effects seem worse if a gene for white markings is also present. In Border Collies and
Australian Shepherds, all of which normally have fairly extensive white markings, the “M/M” white has a strong
probability of being deaf or blind. A “M/M”, double merle, to “mm”, non-merle black in color breeding, is the only
one that will produce 100% merles.

Cryptic or phantom (as it’s sometimes called) merles are dogs which carry a merle gene but are phenotypically
(look like) tri, bi or self colored. These dogs will have some small area of merling somewhere, usually a tiny patch of
merle pattern on their ear, tail, top of head, etc. Keep in mind the tiny patch can be only one hair and it can be
located anywhere on the body. Cryptic merles are very rare. AGAIN, a cryptic or visible merle can only be produced
when one or both parents are merles.


(“-” is either the dominant or recessive allele)

B/- D/- E/- K/- = black

b/b D/- E/- K/- = brown (chocolate)

B/- d/d E/- K/- = blue

b/b d/d E/- K/- = fawn


at^at B/- D/- E/- k/k = black with tan points

at^at b/b D/- E/- k/k = chocolate with tan points

at^at B/- d/d E/- k/k = blue with dilute tan points

at^at b/b d/d E/- k/k = fawn with dilute tan points


B/B d/d e/e = dilute red to pale cream with gray nose (dog is genetically a
dilute black, but will be a cream color)

B/b d/d e/e = dilute red to pale cream with gray nose (dog is genetically a dilute
black, but will be a cream color)

b/b d/d e/e = dilute red to pale cream with rosey-brown nose (dog is genetically
dilute brown, but will be cream color)

b/b D/d e/e = dilute red to pale cream with brown nose (dog is genetically
brown, but will be cream color)

b/b D/D e/e = dilute red to pale cream with brown nose (dog is genetically
brown, but will be cream color)

B/B D/D e/e = dilute red to pale cream with black nose (dog is genetically black,
but will be cream color)

B/b D/d e/e = dilute red to pale cream with black nose (dog is genetically black,
but will be cream color)


Dogs are either black or red —- other alleles act upon each other to create different colors or different shades of
colors. It is theorized that all breeds of dogs have all of the alleles for different colors. Some dogs are been
selectively bred over the many years to be dominant for a certain color or colors. A few examples would be the
Golden Retriever, Irish Setter, Weimaraner, Lab etc…

When you are looking at coat color, it is best to look at the entire picture. The entire picture being all the alleles that
encode for color. We will look at each individual allele and then, later, put them together for the complete coat color.

Keeping in mind that each puppy receives a copy of each allele from their parents.

The first listed allele is expressed, the second one is hidden or carried. If one parent is brown (b/b) – the “b”
allele is the ONLY one that can be copied and inherited by the puppy. So, the puppy will receive a copy of the “b”
allele from that parent. If the other parent is B/B – the only allele that the puppy can receive is “B”. All of the offspring
are B/b, or black and carrying brown.

If one parent is B/b – the puppy can receive either “B” or “b”. If the other parent is also B/b – the puppy can receive
either “B” or “b” (from that parent). The offspring will be: B/B – black; B/b – black and carrying brown; or b/b – brown.

Genes that are carried can remain hidden for many generations. Some are under the impression that the hidden
genes can be bred out in three generations, this is always not the case.

Pigment distribution patterns are controlled by the A and E Loci.

Color that is modified by diluting colors are controlled by the B, C, D, G and M Loci.

The placement of white areas on the coat are controlled by the S and T Loci.

K Locus: controls the expression of the A Locus and brindle

K/K or K/k – does not allow the expression of the A Locus (the alleles are still present, just not allowed to the
expressed) or brindle (all ticked/black ASTCD’s and ACD’s are either K/K or K/k)

k^br – encodes for brindle (in order for brindle to be expressed, the dog MUST be able to express the alleles
from the A Locus) (ASTCD’s nor ACD’s carry the gene for brindle)

k/k – allows expression of the A Locus alleles (all red [sable] ASTCD’s and red [sable] ACD’s)

E extension: controls the extent of black (eumelanin) or yellow (phaeomelanin) across the coat.

E/E or E/e – black coat (keep in mind we are only talking about one allele, when other alleles are added, the
color could change)

e/e – red or yellow coat (this is a mutation and does not allow black to be expressed. It is epistatic (means
causes other alleles to act differently from what they normally would) to all other alleles, but can be modified by
the C Locus to be lighter

*NOTE: Red (e/e) has been found in the ASTCD and ACD

A Locus: Controls the amount of black and yellow color placement on individual hairs.

a^y – Sable: red shaft with black tips (genotype of the red ASTCD and red ACD)

a^w – Wolf: banded coloration; eumelanin and phaeomelanin compete with each and this causes the banding
of color – light, dark, light, dark (not found in the ASTCD nor the ACD)

a^s – Saddle: no one is sure if this is a separate allele from tan points, or just an exaggerated pattern (can be
a carried allele, although not regularly found in the ASTCD, has been seen in the ACD)

a^t – Tan points: eumelanin covering most of the dorsal (back) surface with phaemelanin on the legs, throat,
chest, above the eyes, cheeks and underneath the tail (genotype of the ACD and found in some ASTCD;
can be a carried allele)

a^a – recessive black: Only a few breeds are recessive black, usually found in herding breeds (Australian
Shepherd, German Shepherd) and the Schipperke (studies are now being conducted concerning the
inheritance and location of this gene)

*** NOTE: there are two promoters that are associated with the A Locus. The cycling promoter produces a banded
hair with a black tip and yellow middle over the entire body. The other is the ventral promoter that directs there be
only yellow color in the hair on the belly. These work together and the animal will have black banded hair on the
dorsal surface and paler yellow hair on the ventral (stomach) surface.

B Locus: Controls ONLY eumelanin (black) to either a modification of or full color. Also controls skin pigment (eye
rims, lips and nose leather) and iris color.

It is believed that the Brown Locus codes for an enzyme, tyrosinase-related protein 1 (TYRP1), which catalyzes the
final step in eumelanin production, changing the final intermediate brown pigment (dihydroxyindole) to black pigment.
SO, ALL dogs start as BROWN and after the final step — this directs the color to be black.

When brown (b/b) is expressed, it means that the final step in eumelanin production has not been completed and the
pigment remains brown. The brown color is not a genetic defect.

When the alleles are in the homozygous or heterozygous dominant form of B/B or B/b, the color and pigment (nose,
eye rims and lips) remains (or directs the color to be) black.

When the alleles are in the homozygous recessive form (b/b), the color and pigment will be brown. This just means
that the final step in eumelanin production of changing brown to black did not occur. Phaemelanin (yellow/red [e/e])
is not affected. BUT, in the e/e colored dog, if the dog is also b/b; they will be either red or yellow and will have brown
pigment (nose, eye rims and lips). The pigment granules produced by “bb” are smaller, rounder in shape, and
appear lighter than pigment granules in “B” dogs. The iris of the eye is also lightened.

B/B or B/b – is full color, does not change skin pigment or iris color

b/b – the last step in the production of eumelanin is missing, therefore; the color is brown (not red). This allelic
pair does change skin pigment and iris color (no matter what other alleles are present). (This coloration has
been found in the ASTCD and the ACD).

***NOTE: there are actually 3 different alleles that encode for the brown color, since they all do the same thing, only
one is mentioned.D Locus: Controls BOTH eumelanin and phaeomelanin to either full color or dilution. Also control
skin pigment (eye rims, lips, and nose leather) and iris color.

D/D or D/d – controls full color (black or red) (ASTCD’s and ACD’s are thought to be homozygous for this
allele [D/D])

D/D or D/d – no dilution, codes for full color

d/d – dilutes any other alleles present (example: dilutes e/e to pale yellow; dilutes b/b to a flat silvery-brown dull
color; dilutes sable to yellow), also dilutes skin pigment of the eye rims, lips and nose leather to gray and
lightens the iris color.

C Locus: Controls full color or dilutes the color

C/C – full color, no dilution (keep in mind the b/b and d/d will dilute the alleles regardless)

c^ch – chinchilla gene: is incompletely dominant and is a flat color. Is said to not greatly affect black and has
little effect on solid black dogs. It affects lighter hues more so than darker, therefore; it lightens yellow, tan and
red hues to cream, brown becomes milk chocolate or a lighter brown and blue becomes silver.

c^e – extreme dilution of color. Dilutes red and yellow color to a silvery color approaching white. West Highland
Terriers are thought to be “e/e c^e/c^e”.

c^b – blue-eye albino. Very rare. May be responsible for the blue-eyed, pink skinned, white Doberman.

c^c – true albino. Pink eyes. Not seen (yet) in dogs.

S Locus: Controls white areas on the body

S/S – Self colored, no white areas are expressed. Sometimes a very minimal amount of white can be found, like
a white tip on the tail, white toes, white star on chest – these white areas are also thought to be caused by
another allele.

s^i – Irish spotting: white collar, white on legs, white on tail. White does not cross between the withers
(shoulders) and tail.

s^p – Piebald: white covers 50% of the body and will cross between the withers and tail. There are well defined
colored spots on the body (like some Jack Russell’s). (ASTCD’s and ACD’s that have body spots are

s^w – extreme piebald: white body with colored heads and usually a spot near the tail. Some dogs may have
color only around the eyes or ears (or both). Breeding extreme white dogs may result in all white offspring. (All
ASTCD’s and ACD’s are the extreme piebald coloration, along with being ticked [the ticking gene]).

T Locus: Control small spotting on the body

T/T – ticking: can only occur in areas of white color. The T and S Locus compliment each other; in other words – white
areas must be present in order for the ticking to be expressed. The color of the tick (small spotting) is the color that
the coat would have been, if the white spotting gene was not present. (All ASTCD’s and ACD’s have this gene).

T/T or T/t – ticked or roan
t/t – non-ticked

G Locus: Graying gene

G/G or G/g – animal grays with age, like a human
g/g – does not gray

M Locus: Controls the dilution of a dogs coat in a patchy pattern (incomplete dominance). Both normal color and
diluted colors occur, because the M alleles are incomplete dominant.

M/M – double merle; occurs when merle is bred to merle

M/m – merle; occurs when merle is bred to non-merle

m/m – non-merle (ALL ASTCD’s and ACD’s are non-merle)

Posted in Breeding | 1 Comment

One year old CeCe herding

See Gwen’s young ACD herding big cattle. She has matured into a wonderful working cattle dog, terrific positive and happy temperament and eager to learn and please

Posted in Breeding | Leave a comment

Results of World Winner 2012

World Dog Show Salzburg

Judge: Herr Svend Lovenkjaer (DK)

Males – Puppy class
Windwarrior´s Storm Warning VV1
Lestat vom Teufelsjoch VV2

Males- Junior class
Sawdust´s In All It´s Glory V1, JUNIOR WORLD WINNER, BOB
(dam: Kalegoorlie Blue Cidabro) :-)))

Ivanhoe Red Tattoo Outback Maverick V2
Persian Pearl Dingo V3
Avery´s Va Bene von der Sturmhöhe V4
Spader´s Checker V
Banana Bender Life Is Like A Chocolates Box V
Cattlepark´s Simply Smokin SG
In The Mood Red Tattoo Outback Maverick SG
Cattle Catchers Born To Heel SG
Wild Desert Dingo´s Living Legend SG
Banana Bender Conte Di Cavour SG
Kyron vom Teufelsjoch SG
Jethro Tull vom Teufelsjoch SG
Nohel of Drover´s Run Horser Ranch SG

Males -Intermediate class
Alligator Between The Rivers V1, CACA
Banana Bender Se Quel Guerriero Io Fossi G

Males – Open class
Bentley´s Blue Crackerjack V1, CACA
(dam: Vet Ch. Clever Girl Cidabro, our great friend lives with us)

Dedalo V2, res.CACA
Bavarian Heartbreakers Anican V3
Banana Bender The Governor V4
Big Tasty of the Seven Hills Country V
Makapuupoint V
Estorillo vom Teufelsjoch G
Banana Bender Mercury Blues G
Jumpin Joker´s Guillian G
Muffin Man Del Whimper Delle G.J. nicht anwesend

Males – Champion class
Heelersridge Emublu King V1, CACA, CACIB – WORLD WINNER
(King is 3rd time WORL WINNER, sire of our Q and U-litters Cidabro)

Queblue Aussie Icon V2, res.CACA, res.CACIB
Flintstone Turrella Red Tattoo Outback Maverick V3
Hyatho des Poenjaap V4
Banana Bender Doctor Who V
Imboss of Drover´s Run Horse Ranch V
Espion Du Val de Roquepertuse SG
Va Bene Neverland King SG
Agent I-Point Wild Mosquitos SG
Heelersridge Working Class Man SG
Link of the Seven Hills Country SG

Males- Veteran class
Cattlepark´s Mouldtail V1, WORLD VETERAN WINNER
Wallaby Ned Kelly V2
Oakhill Valley Chaos SG3
Tallawong Snow Drift SG4

Females- Puppy class
Ocean Blue of Drover´s Run Horse Ranch VV1

Females- Junior class
A Ballad Of Lucy Jordan von der Sturmhöhe V1, JUNIOR WORLD WINNER
Goldikova Du Mont De La Nonnenhardt V2
Gena Mini Aussie V3
Banana Bender Sventola Il Tricolore V4
Impressive Blue Tattoo Outback Maverick V
Zamok Svyztogo Angela Yulya Luna V
Narwee Cinderella´s Ranch V
Nevada Of Drover´s Run Horse Ranch V
Drywoods Liberty Of Horseman Buddies SG
Cattlepark´s Smoky Blue Pearl SG
Ice N Snow Blue Tattoo Outback Maverick SG
Kaja vom Teufelsjoch SG
Pleistozaen Cariama Cristata SG
Banana Bender From Greenbow Alabama —

Females – Intermediate class
Adina Between The Rivers V1, CACA
Indygo Rainbow Of Rum Jungle SG2
GC Freemantle Doctor Electric Blue Jeans G

Females – Open class
Karkoolka Cinderella´s Ranch V1, CACA, CACIB, WORLD WINNER, BOS
Kurpas Rejoice V2, res.CACA, res.CACIB
Jai des Poenjaap V3
Va Bene No Angel V4
Banana Bender Senorita Rosarita SG
Landmaster So Glad Youre Mine SG

Females – Champion class
Buzzard Francesca Romana V1, CACA
Clearidge Red Min Fire V2, res.CACA
Deli Banana Bender V3
McCoy´s Endless Sky Of Blossom V4
MISS AUSSIE CIDABRO V …….. our Lupina is real Winner for me :-))))
Turrella Red Mae West V
Danbar´s River of Dreams V
Electra vom Teufelsjoch V
Bruni Kazari Toyo-Ken —-

Female – Veteran class
Gina SG

Posted in Shows | 1 Comment

Results at Crufts 2012

Posted in goofy | 2 Comments

Aging in Dogs – A Complete Overview

Dr Wim Van Kerkhoven – copyright

Factors influencing Life Expectancy
Apart from breed, several factors influence life expectancy:

Diet – The oldest dog on record was Bluey, an Australian Cattle Dog, who died at 29 in 1939. In the 2000s, at least two dogs were still living at 27 years old, but one was fed a purely vegetarian diet (border collie, died at 27) and one fed primarily on kangaroo and emu meat (bull terrier cross, died at 27).
Spaying and neutering – Neutering reduces or eliminates the risk of some causes of early death, for example pyometra in females, and testicular cancer in males, as well as indirect causes of early death such as accident and euthanasia (intact dogs roam and tend to be more aggressive), but there might increase the risk of death from other conditions (neutering in cited paper only showed an increased the risk for prostate cancer but has not been repeated in subsequent papers] in males, and neutered males might have a higher rate for urinary tract cancers such as transitional cell carcinoma and prostatic adenocarcinoma.

What things should you expect as your dog ages?

Slowing down


Arthritis, particularly large breeds. Arthritis can occur in any joint, most commonly the legs, neck and back (spine)
Graying around the face, muzzle starting at middle age (5-6 years)
Reduced hearing (deafness).
Cloudy or “bluish” eyes – The medical term for this is lenticular sclerosis. Vision does not appear to be affected. This is NOT the same as cataracts. Cataracts are white and opaque and vision can be affected.
Muscle atrophy – Mild loss of muscle mass, especially the hind legs. Some muscle atrophy, notably on the head and the belly muscles, can signify diseases such as masticatory myositis and Cushing’s disease
Decreased activity, more sleeping, and reduced energy (in part due to reduced lung function)
Weight gain (calorie needs can be 30–40% lower in older dogs)
Weakening of immune system leading to infections
Skin changes (thickening or darkening of skin, dryness leading to reduced elasticity, loss or whitening of hair)
Change in feet and nails (thicker and more brittle nails makes trimming harder)
Loss of teeth
Gastrointestinal upset (stomach lining, diseases of the pancreas, constipation)
Urinary issues (incontinence in both genders, and prostatitis/straining to urinate in males)
Mammary cysts and tumors in females
Heart murmurs

Senility ? Don’t forget, senior dogs get Alzheimers too !
Some dog owners may report that their dog wake up in the middle of the night and start howling. Others may report their very well house-trained dog gets up and has accidents around the house or wakes up to drink and then shortly after urinates on the carpet. Just as it may happen in humans, dogs ted to approach their golden years by losing parts of their cognitive function. Some may lose some, some may lose more. Many refer to these cases affectionately as ‘doggy Alzheimer’s’ while medically, this condition is abbreviated as CDS standing for Cognitive Dysfunction Syndrome.
Key CDS symptoms

When you can’t teach new tricks anymore to an old dog… Senior dogs may forget some simple commands they have known all their lives.
The blank stare … Dogs affected by CDS may stare for no apparent reason a wall or any other object, some may even chase imaginary objects or bark while nothing is there.
The big maze … Some dogs will get up in the middle of the night and wander around bumping into furniture as they look for their way out. Some may get easily distressed and panic as they try to find the way back to bed. Some dogs will howl or get stuck in a corner without finding their way out.
Night owls … sometimes the dog may have difficulty recognizing the difference between night and day and forget all about the routines. These are the dogs that will wake up at night and start having accidents around the house or start drinking or eating in the middle of the night. Afterward, they will sleep during the day and have no more accidents.
Inside and outside debate …some dogs may even forget why they are sent outside.
Who are you ? … Some dogs may even forget who their owner is and may growl or act unusually timid. At other times they may have moments of seeming to remember.

What can you do?

Take you dog out more often
Pet your dog and show affection more often
Do not move furniture around to prevent confusion
Keep up with a daily routine and stick with it
Have your dog wear doggie diapers during the night
Place baby gates to seclude dangerous areas such as stairs
Supervise your pet when outdoors

Elderly Dog Feeding Considerations
Older dogs are undergoing many different physiological changes. To keep up with these changes, it is recommended that a diet that is suited for older dogs be fed. Remember to keep up with the exercise and keep the weight under control.

Foods to Avoid
The most common geriatric canine complaint is arthritis; red meat and dairy products can aggravate the painful inflammation associated with this disorder, so eliminate these foods from your dog’s diet if he suffers from arthritis.
Many older dogs will need a well-balanced diet that is lower in calories, but still has adequate protein and fat, and is higher in fiber. For some older dogs, we can continue to feed their regular food, but in a smaller quantity. Specially formulated senior diets are lower in calories and help to create a feeling of fullness. Lower fat usually translates to lower calories; so many senior diets have lower fat levels than adult maintenance or growth diets. Older dogs are more prone to develop constipation, so senior diets are often higher in fiber at around 3 to 5%. If your dog has significantly decreased kidney function, then a diet that is lower in phosphorus will lower the workload for the kidneys.

Supplements for older dogs – useful?
Aging dogs have special nutritional needs, and some of those can be supplied in the form of supplements. Feeding a daily supplement containing glucosamine and chondroitin, may help support joints. If your dog is not eating a complete balanced diet, then a vitamin/mineral supplement is recommended to prevent any deficiencies. Some owners like to feed extra antioxidants. As mentioned earlier, a prebiotic product may help to reduce the incidence of constipation.
In general, supplements are more than useful for older dogs. Older dogs have a decreased absorption of nutrients in the intestines and need to be supplemented but make sure that those nutrients can be well absorbed because the intestinal cells don’t absorb at the same level as in a 3 year old dog. Viyo Elite is a low calorie product and is complete in formulation. Viyo Elite guarantees due to his liquid formulation a good and fast absorption of all nutrients. It is a low calorie product containing all essential vitamins, minerals, amino acids and fatty acids, prebiotics as MOS,FOS and inulin and supports the joint health through glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate.

Dr Wim Van Kerkhoven – copyright

Posted in Health | 2 Comments

Breeder/Zuechter CAN


Agassiz Reg’d Kennels

Ch. (Alt) Agassiz’s Dingo Ringo, CD, HIC, CGN, WD, RN-CL

Posted in Shows | Leave a comment

Official Video of Australian Cattle Dogs at Westminster Show, 2012

Australian Cattle Dogs at Westminster Show 2012

Posted in Videos | Leave a comment

Reku/GOOFY’s Weg ins neue Leben


Datum Name Betrag
10.01.2012 Doris Duewel 100 €
11.01.2012 Monika Ziemann 30 €
12.01.2012 Heike Lindner 20 €
17.01.2012 Alexander + Karin Saenger 50€
19.01.2012 Alexandra Busch 10€
19.01.2012 Michael Gottschalk 20€
19.01.2012 Petra & Michael Gerhards 30€
20.01.2012 Andreas Espenner 50€
23.01.2012 Nicole Lichtsteiner 50€
23.01.2012 Marion Sent 10€
23.01.2012 Ingo Laudenbach 10€
24.01.2012 Holger Nill 20€
25.01.2012 Isabel Reis 25€
25.01.2012 anonym 50€

Allen Spendern den allerherzlichsten Dank fuer 475 Euros! Reku ist wohlbehalten in Polen angekommen. Diese kurzfristige Rettungsaktion war nur moeglich, weil zahlreiche Menschen aus Deutschland, Estonia, Polen und Finnland schnell und unbuerokratisch zusammenarbeiteten. Lest dazu REKU’s Geschichte im neuen blog:

    Help to save his life

Hurra, es ist geschafft, REKU kommt zum Zuechter seines Vaters nach Polen. Ich werde die Reisekosten von Estland nach Polen aus Eueren Spenden finanzieren. DANKE an Euch alle, die Ihr Euch so ins Zeug gelegt habt!

KENNEL INGLISILM (not activ anymore)

Sex :Male
Health: PRA A or B
Color :Red speckled
Call Name:REKU
Description:Spoiled by owner in bad way (by stick). Think that he has to protect his owner in agressive way. Available only till the end of this week.
If you want more details, please email or call Mari Joamets My contact: +375065299, or skype mari.joamets
I don’t have this dog, but I am in contact with the owner.

Komi, 11-1-2012So fing alles an:”Looking for new home! Australian Cattledog, male, 4,5 y, red / uut kodu otsib 4,5 aastane punane isane austraalia karjakoer. Uut kodu otsib perenaise poolt untsu keeratu 4,5 aastane isane punane austraallane Reku. Link EKLi registrisse (, INGLISILM GOOFY KULDREBANE. Taust. Mammi müüs maja maha lepinguga, et saab surmani sees elada. Maj…”Pedigree:INGLISILM GOOFY KULDREBANE ( DIESEL DIAMANTINA – WORRIGAL TWIST’N SHOUT


Sex :Male

Health: PRA A or B

Color :Red speckled

Call Name:REKU

Description:Spoiled by owner in bad way (by stick). Think that he has to protect his owner in agressive way. Available only till the end of this week.

call Mari Joamets My contact: +375065299, or skype mari.joamets

I don’t have this dog, but I am in contact with the owner.

Was dann passierte war eine Lawine der Empoerung und des Mitleid.

Deutsche Tierfreunde wollten diesen gesunden, 4 jaehrigen Australian Cattle Dog mit FCI Papieren vor dem Tod durch seinen Besitzer retten.Das musste im Eiltempo passieren, denn der Besitzer wollte ihm nur eine Gnadenfrist bis Ende der Woche geben. Wie sollte REKU von Tallin nach Deutschland kommen? Wieviel kostet ein ausgewachsener Ruede per Flug? Geschaetzte 600€? Es musste gesammelt werden. Wenn jeder etwas dazu gibt, schaffen wir es. Bis dato konnte ich nicht einmal die verreiste Carmen Baumgartner von “ACD in Not” fragen, ob sie eine Pflegestelle fuer ihn hat. Egal, Hauptsache erst einmal weg von diesem Besitzer und nach Deutschland, wo man ihn nicht einschlaefern wuerde. Ich spreche Carmen unser Problem aufs Band, Keine Antwort. Was ich nicht wusste, der Akku ihres Telefons war leer. Dann plötzlich die erloesende Nachricht, er wird ein neues Zuhause in Poznan bei Monika Milewska finden. Sie hat eine kleine, bekannte Zucht von Australian Cattle Dogs mit dem Namen “Diamantina Force (FCI)”.

Was immer wir im deutschen Fernsehen ueber polnische Massenproduktion bedauernswerter Welpen mit gefaelschten Impfpaessen sehen, es gibt auch polnische Zuechter, die nicht nur im traditionsreichen Związek Kynologiczny w Polsce mit FCI Papieren zuechten, sondern ihre Hunde und Wuerfe mit Liebe und Fuersorge betreuen. Ich habe selbst einen Cardigan Corgi aus polnischer Zucht, der nicht nur hervorragend gezuechtet wurde, sondern keine bessere Betreuung in seinen ersten Lebensmonaten haben konnte als durch seine polnische Zuechterin. Sie hat mir einen lieben, vertrauensvollen Welpen gegeben.

Komi, 12-1-2012
Mari Jouamets schreibt:
Hi Doris!I’m really greatful that I found You and Monika. When I put this announcement, I was sure that I can’t help him within  such a short time, but I decided to try. What happened is a real miracle to me. We now decided with Monika to transport him by car. Monika hasn’t decided yet, if she will  come to Estonia, will I drive to her to Poznan or  will we meet in the middle, in Kaunas (Kowno). Now when Reku has a new home I’ve got one more week for him that Monika could arrange all her things what she needs to take good care for Reku at start. When he will come  to his new home, it’s the most important time for him in many ways. When Reku will start to leave Estonia, I promise, I will take pictures and will write all about it for you and all the German supporters. You know, Reku’s life is the second dog’s life which  I’ve really saved. First time it was a  brutal  case of abuse. It was the very first time that such a case of abuse was published in Estonia. After this case Estonian people  started to realize that dogs are living creatures and they deserve attention like  humans. They started to realize, that  it’s not OK to keep them on short  chain,  it’s not OK to beat them and  it’s not OK to feed them with water and bred and so on. The involved dog whom  I’m talking about is my labrador retriever Lill. She had a lot of not-treated fractures (both first legs, breastbone and pelvis), she was  asozial (she was over one year old and she  didn’t even  knew her name), she didn’t communicate with people at all, she was afraid of everything. Her leg looked like this: (this is her). She lived in a dark garage and were fed by water and bones. Now she is a very friendly and happy dog with quite a good health. When  her breeder found her in such a bad condition, she gave this dog to me for 2 weeks to see how she behaves. After 2 weeks she decided to put her asleep because of her health problems and asozial behavior. I asked this dog for  myself. The breeder thought that she will not live longer as about 4-5 years, but in april she will be 7 🙂 Yes, she has some problems with her health, but she is fine in general. Today she looks like: or As you can see, after hard medical surgery ( her leg is fine. Thank You a lot and I keep You informed about everything what is going on about Reku/Goofy! Best, Mari

Monika wrote:

Good afternoon Doris, this site is great! Thanks! Of course, will be new photos on FB, I have over 300 people with ACDs in my friends on FB, so if I will put new photos, then a lot people will see it and you of course can copy this on Reku/Goofy page. I also want to change his name from Reku on Goofy and I hope he very fast will forget about his earlier life. He will have very good friends – my girls and me and dogs of my friends and my friends. I go with my dogs to place for dogs and there they can play with other dogs :-)About this money: maybe bettter would be to sent money to Mari? She also did very good job and she also will help in trasport of Goofy 🙂 We plan to meet in around half road, probably it will be next weekend (21-22.01.), for Mari and her husband weekend is also better than middle of week.

I also plan to take with us my red female, because I have her short time yet and better will be if she will go with me there. My Bluebird will be with Jarek’s wife on this travel’s time and my afghan Raszida at other my friends and she will be there few weeks, because I will need more time for Goofy in these first days/weeks. Raszida very likes these my friends, because they also have afghan, so will not be problem :-)And Doris: I don’t do it for popularity of my kennel, I do it for Goofy, he is most important in this all :-)All the best for you,

Meri wrote from Tallin:
Today I went to see Goofy. I would say that he is more wild than aggressive. Barked a few times from a distance, do not try to attack. He is also a bit fat, should lose a few pounds I think 🙂
Today, it also appears that the owner has lost his pedigree. This means that the exportpedigree formalization takes a little more time than we expected, as the first step is to restore Estonia’s pedigrees. Missing pedigree does not distruct his transporting.
I also enclose a couple of today’s image

Heute nacht kam endlich die Erleichterung. GOOFY ist auf halben Weg nach Poznan in Polen und hat seine neue Besitzerin getroffen. Dies ist ihre mail mit Foto:

GOOFY  meets  his new owner  Monika
Monika Diamantina Force 22 January 00:11

Good evening Dear Doris,
we already have Reku/Goofy and I want to tell you, that he is VERY FRIENDLY! 🙂
He is very, very fat, but he will get good diet and he will have a lot walks, so I think he will look very good soon 🙂
In moment I will put few photos and later also Mari and Jarek will put, because they have better cameras than me and there was already dark, so my photos are not good.
Now we are again at Jarek’s friends on the night, Goofy is also very nice and polite 🙂
Thanks for all and good night,

GOOFYs lange Reise beginnt am 21.Januar in der Hauptstadt Estlands Tallin, fuehrt durch Lettland, dann durch Litauen und fast ganz durch Polen bis nach Poznan, dem ehemaligen Posen nahe der deutschen Grenze.Das sind kalkulierte 1291 km mit einer hochgerechneten Reisezeit von 17 1/2 Stunde ohne Pausen fuer GOOFY und seine jeweiligen Begleiter.Monika kommt aus Polen die halbe Strecke Mari entgegen. Beide nehmen eine anstrengende Fahrt auf sich, um GOOFY ein besseres zukuenftiges Leben bieten zu koennen.
Leider sind zu wenig Spenden eingegangen, um Sprit, Verpflegung und Uebernachtung bezahlen zu koennen.Siehe Spendenliste oben. Ich werde trotzdem 200 Euros ueberweisen als Hilfe fuer Monika und ihren Fahrer aus Polen und Mari aus Estland.
Ende gut, alles gut. Nach fast 1300 km Fahrt, ab Freiag, 23. Januar nachts von Tallin in Estland ueber einen naechtlich Stop in Litauen bis nach Poznan in Polen, erreichte REKU am Montag, dem 26.01. mit Monika seine neue Heimat. Die Spendenaktion erbrachte dann doch noch 470€, womit die Fartkosten gedeckt werden konnten. Niemand freut sich darueber mehr als ich. Ganz herzlichen Dank allen Spendern fuer ihr Mitgefuehl und ihre materielle Hilfe!
Hier zwei Fotos von REKU in seiner neuen Heimat. Er scheint ein polyglottes Naturtalent zu sein, denn er verstand auf Anhieb polnisch….

REKU settling down after all

REKU with his grandma in Poland

REKU is finally a good looking, well muscled Australian Cattle Dog and obviously happy with Monika in Poznan.Last news of REKU: He has been BAER tested and is bilateral hearing!  

  • breeder:Lorraine Norris & Charlie Gerster
  • 2728 Elm Tree Road, Lindsay, ON Canada K9V 4R1 (705) 374-3989
  • e-mail
  • Dalaussie Kennels

    BISS AM/CAN Champion

  • Breeder:LESLIE OLSON
  • Phone Number: 403 223 1271
  • e-mail

  • Zuechter: Joyce & Rebecca Redden
  • email


    Veliraf Aged to Perfection

  • Zuechter:Nicole Heath
  • email
    • Share this:
    Posted in Breeder/Zuechter NL | Leave a comment

    Breeder/Zuechter AUT




  • Zuechter: Andy & Karin Kirchner
  • homepage
  • email
  • KING’S of the DAWN

    Valley of the Wind Ain’t that Love

  • Zuechter: Andreas Kettl
  • Kings of the Dawn
  • Tel.: 0043-676 843 072 319

    Byron the Lord vom Teufelsjoch

  • Zuechter: Ilse Sadleder
  • v. Teufelsjoch
  • email or Mobil: +43/676/39 83 290
    tel: +43/7612/73 0 82

    Corra Blue from Walkers of the Wind

  • Zuechter: Viktoria Kastner
  • homepage:Pleistozaen
  • email
  • Posted in Breeding | Leave a comment

    Breeder/Zuechter I


    Multi Ch Dinky Di Dakeedoo
    Zuechter:Paolo Coletta and Simona Capelli
  • homepage
  • email
  • tel.: Casa +39 33 16 50 10 24

    Ch Armani Kazary Toyo Ken
    breeder:Jerry Lanzoni
  • homepage
  • email
  • Tel. 347-3449812
  • Posted in Breeding | Leave a comment

    Dentition in Puppies & Adults

    Puppies have 28 baby teeth. 14 teeth are in the upper jaw and 14 teeth in the lower jaw. They do not have any molars or premolar 1.
    When the puppy is about three to four weeks old, the milk teeth start to drop out because the permanent teeth are growing more and more upwards.

    Side view of a puppy dentition

    When do milk teeth leave?

    Incisors 4-6 weeks
    Canine 5-6 weeks
    Premolars 6 weeks

    When do permanent teeth grow?

    Incisors 3-5 months
    Canine 4-6 months
    Premolars 4-5 months
    Molars 5-7 months

    Dentition in an Adult Dog

    The Australian Cattle Dog has a scissor bite with four different types of teeth; each has its certain duty.Altogether he has 42 teeth.

    Incisors– are used for cutting food, chewing,picking up objects and grooming himself or friends; these are the 6 front teeth in the upper and again 6 teeth in the lower jaw.Canines – used for holding and tearing prey/food. There are two upper and two lower canines.

    Premolars – used for cutting, holding, carrying and breaking food into small pieces; these teeth are situated between the canines and molars; puppies do not have P1 teeth, only P2, P3, P4; adults have 8 premolars on the top and 8 on the bottom, 4 on each side of the upper and lower jaws

    – used for grinding food into small pieces The molars are situated behind the premolars and are the last teeth in the back of the jaw; puppies do not have molars; Adults have four molars in the upper jaw, two on each side and 6 molars in the lower jaw, three on each side.

    Posted in Canine dentition | Leave a comment