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    Types of  Canine Breeding

     

    In order to be a “good” breeder, one must learn about what are the different kinds of breeding practices in use.

     

    In- breeding

     

    This is a method where closely related dogs are used for breeding ---brother is mated with sister, or parent mates with an offspring, or a half-brother or half-sister.

     

    It is however widely believed that in breeding results in “bad genes” becoming pre-dominant. But this does not always mean that it will certainly cause diseases.

     

    In breeding is popular as it ensures the maintenance of a “wanted” characteristics or traits in purebred dogs. Purebred dogs are those that emerge unchanged and share a very small gene pool—which in fact gives the breed its specific characteristics. So, in this the breeder who is well-informed and knowledgeable can choose which traits he wants to bring to the fore in his dogs and mate “pairs” such that he can achieve the desired goals.

     

    This method of breeding also makes it possible to identify undesirable gene pools within a line and thus “bad” genes can be eliminated from the breeding program. However, in breeding over successive generations reduces considerably the fitness levels of the breed as well as fertility problems—termed as In-breeding depression.

     

    A breeder must always be wary of in-breeding dogs with known genetic disorders, unsuitable temperaments, or structural faults. In fact, frequent in breeding of even healthy/strong and superior animals leads to a subsequent weakening of the breed. 

     

    Line-breeding

     

    In this care is taken to breed animals that share common ancestors but are not immediately related. The mating pair may therefore share a great-grandparent but will not be brother/sister or first cousins.

     

    It is most essential for the breeder to study thoroughly basic genetics as well as all about dominant and recessive genes. They must be able to map out in detail the outcome of the “breeding,” using their knowledge of which attributes are dominant and which ones are recessive. An in depth knowledge of genetic health issues as well as the mode of inheritance of diseases is essential.

     

    This method enables a breeder to “set” desirable characteristics without breeding closely related dogs. In this the dogs do have common ancestors but with a variable –there are genes from others lines too. Although in this method the time taken to achieve the goals is considerably longer, the breeder lowers greatly the weakening of the “breed.”

     

    According to experts in breeding as well as genetics—line breeding is a safe way to breed dogs for many generations without harmful/disastrous effects –one must however ensure that the dogs have few hidden genetic disorders.

     

    Out-crossing

     

    This method of breeding mates dogs that are not related in any way – there are no common ancestors for the first 4-5 generations. In this, no pedigree or ancestors will be common for at least 4/5 generations.

     

    This according to research has the benefit that you are maintaining the greatest genetic diversity---the downside being that the breeder has no “say” whatsoever in the “traits” or “physical appearance.”

     

    Since the dogs come from widely divergent lines, the method reduces the chances of the offspring showing up genetic disorders.

     

    It is important to know that out-crossing is the method most often used by breeders who do not have a breeding program in place or are just random/ novice breeders. Although even experienced breeders do use this method occasionally to bring in a “specific or needed” attribute into their “line”.

     

    Bare Essentials

     

    In order to become knowledgeable breeders, we must obtain a complete understanding of the dogs we plan to breed.

     

    We need to:

     

    • First and foremost study the breed in great detail and gain an in depth knowledge of the breed standard established for the breed, the variations, conformation points, as well as faults.

     

    • Have a good understanding of the genetics of the breed.

     

    • Know all about heritable diseases as well as undesirable genes.

     

    • Learn how to construct as well as maintain a pedigree chart—this will help at least three earlier generations and their salient features. This will also reveal any patterns in breeding of the dogs—common ancestors and so on. A pedigree indicates bloodline—a record of ancestors who have contributed to the genetic pool and so to the traits, temperament, as well as characteristics.

     

    • Most important is a consideration of “physical” traits—this is the key to building better animals. 

     

     

     

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