Collie that won Westminster is son of double merle

Discussion in 'Dog News and Articles' started by lizzybeth727, Feb 16, 2012.

  1. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

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    My vet doesn't use the mismate shot EVER. If we do a medical abortion it's similar to treating pyo medically. I can't remember exactly what the differences are, but I know last time we did it the bitch was hospitalized for a week and it a ROUGH on her.


    That's YOUR choice, not the choice of everyone else. I would totally take being deaf blind over death ANY day. I know a lot of people that are deaf, blind, or BOTH. And they get along just fine. A dog should be able to get along ever better than a human, considering their main sense is SMELL. Smell to a dog is like sight to a human.

    It's sad how someone can be so intolerable of defects.
     
  2. Fran101

    Fran101 Resident fainting goat

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    I have heard both sides and every excuse in the book but frankly, I think it's inexcusable and extremely selfish to knowingly do a merle x merle breeding.

    even if only one pup is born deaf, or only two born blind out of the whole litter.. you would KNOWINGLY take that risk and deal with euthanizing or finding homes (and proper homes for deaf/blind dogs aren't exactly a dime a dozen) for deaf/blind pups in the name of..what?.. titles?

    Any breeder that isn't at it's root breeding for the HEALTH and perseverance of their breed (including creating healthy pups to further the breed) needs to really re-examine their priorities.
     
  3. Kat09Tails

    Kat09Tails *Now with Snark*

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    Personally I'm of the opinion there isn't really a good reason to produce a 1/4 chance that a puppy really should be euthanized within a litter. If someone produced dogs where one out of four would be born with crippling HD, a fatal heart defect, or a serious case of epilepsy people would be howling. Why would a blind/deaf collie ever be acceptable within a breed bred for herding? After all the well being of every dog within a pedigree should matter. Vanity - is the only reason to produce such an animal on purpose - and foolishness would be the only reason to retain one as breeding stock.

    The UK kennel club will no longer register puppies that result from a sheltie merle merle crossing and I believe it is the right thing to do. It was the result of a request from the breed specialty club.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2012
  4. Romy

    Romy Taxiderpy

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    I think that even if someone is heartless and views dogs as expendable livestock, and is okay with greatly increasing the possibility of having to cull puppies, it's still a very stupid decision.

    With all the expense of health tests, titling, working, dog food, vet bills, physical toll of pregnancy on a bitch, etc. why on earth would anybody want to risk their best prospect out of the litter being born with a lifelong sensory impairment, which could very easily prevent them from being able to work or be proven in whatever capacity they use their dogs?

    It makes no sense to me.

    And from an emotional standpoint, it just makes me sad that people do it intentionally when so many of them aren't willing to buck up and be responsible for the dogs they bring into the world.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2012
  5. Spiritwind

    Spiritwind New Member

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    I honestly don't know if I would be willing to spay my bitch because of something like this. Though, I don't know what I would really do if I was in this situation, since I've never had to deal with this. Especially if it wasn't even my fault (like it happened while the dog was with the handler -- which is what did happen). Just because two dogs may have bred (accidentally) doesn't guarantee puppies, especially if you didn't actually witness the breeding and I THINK I'd probably have a real hard time taking that bitch in to be spayed right away before anyone could even verify she was pregnant.

    I personally love merles, especially the blues.. thouh I have one blue and one sable merle.
     
  6. Lilavati

    Lilavati Arbitrary and Capricious

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    I haven't read the whole thread, but I keep thinking there's a very simple solution to deliberate merle X merle breedings, if only the AKC or the breed club would do it . . . any offspring of such a mating has a pet registration. Period. It's pups can't be registered.

    Although there might still be accidental merle X merle breedings, it would put an end to people doing it on purpose.

    Of course, that would require that the AKC do something . . .


    As for spaying a bitch after such a breeding . . . I don't see a reason why one should be obliged to abort the whole litter, killing healthy puppies as well and lose the brood bitch. As much as I think the puppies from such a breeding should be only registrable as pets . . . I'll probably be flamed for this, but I think I'd just put down any double merles shortly after birth rather than kill the whole litter. It would be just as a merciful as an abort and saves the rest of the litter and the bitch's breeding capacity.
     
  7. OutlineACDs

    OutlineACDs Crazy Dog!

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    Excellent post, Romy.

    I personally don't advocate the breeding of merle to merle, but I know it's done.

    Knew of a sheltie breeeder who had a double dilute (merlexmerle) stud for quite a while.

    I knew an aussie breeder who did merle x merle breeding on a semi-regular basis. She claimed to be able to be able to do extensive pedigree research and do breedings that didn't result in double dilutes. Now, did she have them PTS at birth and that was a bunch of bull? I don't know. I do know I've seen a few perfectly healthy, correct dogs come out of her merle x merle breedings. She wasn't the only aussie person doing this, as supposedly her and about 3 others were doing this pedigree research and breeding dogs.

    The big "scary" danger to collie/sheltie people is the controversy with color-headed whites. The argument is that you can't tell the difference between a color-headed white and a healthy double dilute. So a novice breeder could breed a sable or tri color-headed white to a merle a have a whole litter of double dilutes. The issue here being that the dog they thought was a color headed white is really a dilute. IMO that person shouldn't be breeding anyway because all it takes is a little pedigree research to see that its obviously not a color headed white.

    The sable-merle is also a result of "duh" why didn't you know more about your dog?! As (I think) Romy said perviously sable merle is obvious at birth. It doesn't take a genious to see that if a sable dog has ANY blue in it's eyes it's a sable merle. Also, I'd just assume any sable puppy out of a merle x sable breeding carries the merle gene.

    There were a lot of false statments in those articles and a lot of hype. Doesn't make breeding to get double dilutes right, but the offspring of a double dilute should be healthy as long as the health clearances are done. I know the dogs can't be CERF'ed, but the genetic tests can be done and hips/elbows etc.
     
  8. OutlineACDs

    OutlineACDs Crazy Dog!

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    It is not AKC's job to police anyone. They are a registry. As a puppy buyer you hold the power. If you don't support it, don't buy from that breeder. Asking the AKC to get involved is like having the government getting involved in our rights to birth control (which they're trying to do). It's none of their business how/why/when we breed our dogs.

    Always, always support breeders who you believe in and who have the ethics and principles that you can agree on.
     
  9. OutlineACDs

    OutlineACDs Crazy Dog!

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    I'm always playing the devil's advocate on these things it seems. :p

    The more chance there is of stubbing your toe, the more chance you have of stepping into success. ~Author Unknown

    Everyone takes risks in breeding. You risk losing your bitch, you risk having a health problem crop up, you risk losing your entire litter, you risk producing puppies with horrible temperaments. It's all a risk and some people are only comfortable in taking small risks.

    No one on this board would be discussing this double dilute dog had his offspring not been a top winning dog who has done well at a huge, televised show.

    The breeder took a big risk and bred to a non-CERF'ed non-shown dog and got something worthwhile. Why knock this dog because of his father?

    Why not breed to a non-tested farm dog because he compliments your bitch well and has working ability?

    It's all about the risks you're willing to take.

    (again, just playing devil's advocate)
     
  10. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    Good post Romy.

    Do you realize that corgis are all "deformed"?

    "The genetic mutation that gives the Cardigan its very short legs is called achondroplasia. That’s a word that basically means “weird cartilage.†The growth plates and other cartilaginous structures in this breed are thin and brittle and age quickly, shutting down prematurely. That’s why the bones of the legs do not grow long, and why they are generally at least a little twisted.

    Another universal effect of achondroplasia is a hip socket that is wide and shallow and rather square-shaped instead of deep and egg-shaped. The heads of the femurs are similarly broad and short and square.

    What this means in real life is that ALL Cardigans have some degree of what we’d call hip dysplasia. Their hips just don’t fit as deeply and closely as in the long-legged breeds. And many – probably a third or more – will have hips that are so loose that they will fail OFA certification.

    The very, very good news is that in Cardigans there’s very little correlation between those looser hips and pain and disability. As an orthopedic surgeon once said to me, “They’ve got bizarre hips but they seem to get along perfectly well on those bizarre hips.†So your puppy will almost certainly have no issues even if his or her hips are looser than average for the breed.
    ...

    The issue of spines is a similar one. Dwarfed dogs have cartilage that ages more quickly and becomes brittle and can crack or herniate. Thankfully the rate of disc injuries (often called “going down in the back†or just “going down†in these breeds) is a lot lower in this breed than in, say, Dachshunds, but it can and does happen as they approach middle age. Plenty of people never have a Cardigan go down, through decades of ownership, but it would be wrong of me to imply that it could never happen."

    http://blacksheepcardigans.com/why-we-do-not-guarantee-perfection-in-hips-and-spine/
     
  11. Dekka

    Dekka Just try me..

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    This always irritates me. They are obviously much much more than just a registry. Heck their mission statement makes it very clear they see themselves as much more than a registry.

    is very interesting, no? Not only in the 'more than just a registry' way but also in light of the acceptance of breeding practices that have an exceedingly high chance (almost a certainty) of producing puppies with serious health issues.

    Heck their little slogan "We are more than champion dogs, we are the dog's champion" Heck by allowing merle/merle crossings (easily avoidable) to be registered they are hardly being 'the dog's champion' now are they?
     
  12. OutlineACDs

    OutlineACDs Crazy Dog!

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    Yeah, yeah, I get that. They promote the health and well-being of dogs by the research and education that they do, not by regulating who can breed what to what and when, how etc. They reward breeders who do health testing on their dogs etc. AKC isn't perfect, but as long as they let me do what I feel is necessary with my dogs then I'll register with them.

    So, its not ok for two fully health tested merles to be bred but its ok for Jim and Bob down the street to breed their untested dogs? What if Jim and Bob don't know that both of their dogs have a thyroid problem? Still ok? I mean really.

    You can bash AKC all you want, and thats fine. I bash them too on occasion. They do a lot of things that seem silly to me. As long as I retain my rights to breed and raise and sell my dogs the way I feel is right, I'm ok by that.
     
  13. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    FWIW There were some influential workingAussies that resulted from merle x merle breedings.

    If AKC banned merle x merle breeding, they'd have to remove Catahoulas from their FSS program. This article is interesting regarding merle in them: http://www.donabney.com/issue_merle.php

    There are breeds where there is a high risk of hip dysplasia in every puppy. According to OFA, 66% of Pug xrays submitted were graded dysplastic and none were excellent. Nearly all Cavaliers have a genetic heart defect. These problems didn't occur due to "vanity" either. Generally such issues occur due to a limited gene pool or accidentally, unknowingly being "cemented" in early in the foundation of the breed prior to knowledge of such things.

    FWIW I'm not saying I think it's a great idea to breed merle to merle in Collies or Shelties or breeds at a high risk for blind/deaf double merles. But this sort of thing has been done throughout the history of the breed and the only reason it's being discussed now by people who have no involvement or interest in the breed is due to an article written by someone who seems to think breeding any merle or any Collie for that matter is questionable ethics.
     
  14. ~Jessie~

    ~Jessie~ Chihuahua Power!

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    :hail: :hail: :hail:

    Exactly! A dog's strongest sense is the sense of smell. Not to mention, dogs don't DWELL on things like that. A blind/deaf dog isn't going to sit around moping over not being able to use those senses- their other senses just get stronger to compensate.

    I think the intentional breeding of merle x merle is horrible.
     
  15. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    One thing that I want to point out about the horribly disabled deaf and/or blind puppies is that they don't know life any different. They arn't getting made fun of by the other puppies, they arn't talking around the water cooler realizing that they are lacking in a major sense. So until we can sit down and talk with a sensory disabled dog about how if effects their life, how about we stop assuming how awful it is for them? I have fostered deaf and vision impaired great danes that resulted from merle x merle or merle x harl or harl x harl breedings and let me tell you, those dogs are the happiest dogs ever. So, aborting a litter and risking the bitches life because there is a 1:4 chance of the puppies being deaf and/or blind is a little excessive. It is up to each breeder then to make the decision about culling the majorily impaired dogs (deaf and blind), but there are plenty of happy, well adjusted deaf and vision impaired dogs out there. I'm sure their owners would be appalled to hear about their poor SOB of a dog and how terrible of a life it's leading.

    This is not me advocated merle x merle or any other genetic form that results in impaired dogs. I just wanted to point out that it's a bit harsh to say what a poor life they are leading.
     
  16. OutlineACDs

    OutlineACDs Crazy Dog!

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    In my breed deafness runs rampant. There is nothing we can do except BAER test puppies at 8 weeks and hope for the best. There is extensive research being done trying to find the deafness gene to help prevent this problem in future litters. As of right now though, breeding two full hearing dogs doesn't always produce a litter of full hearing puppies.

    I have owned two unilaterally deaf ACD's and you couldn't even tell. Dogs aren't people and they don't sit around and feel sorry for themselves if they can't see or hear.
     
  17. ~Jessie~

    ~Jessie~ Chihuahua Power!

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    Even if you're talking about blind/deaf people- who is to say that they're unhappy, especially if they've never known any different? Hellen Keller has done more than most of us will ever do in our entire LIFETIMES.

    Dogs that are born blind/deaf have no idea that they're missing anything. The ones that I've seen and heard about are happy, well adjusted dogs. If I happened across a blind/deaf dog in my breed, I wouldn't hesitate to give it a home.

    Do you think that you'd be happier being dead if you had no sense of smell? Of course not- you'd use your other senses and be perfectly fine.
     
  18. Lilavati

    Lilavati Arbitrary and Capricious

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    This.

    And its not like the government regulating our birth control, because the AKC is a private organization. If the AKC banned double merle breedings, you would still be perfectly free to make such breedings . . . you just couldn't register them with the AKC or show the offspring at AKC events. The AKC also claims that it is there to advocate for purebred dogs. Fine, then advocate for them, instead of permitting, even encouraging, practices that feed the AR crowd, ruin breeds (although merleXmerle is not one of those), and result in unhealthy animals. Or don't. They are a private organization, free to do as they please. And I am free to critique them for being hypocrites and doing the dog fancy no favors.


    Aleron, if a breed doesn't have a problem with merlexmerle breeding, then there's no reason to ban it. The thing about the Catahoula's is fascinating. But saying people are only interested now because of that article is bunk. One of my "breeds" is the Cardigan Corgi, another breed with the merle trait, and one were great effort has been made to discourage merlexmerle breeding and prevent double merles. People have been interested, and concerned about this issue for a long time, at least in other breeds.
     
  19. Beanie

    Beanie Clicker Cult Coordinator

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    The AKC is also a business... trying to make money. And they are not making a lot of money right now. Anybody wonder WHY exactly they opened up this Canine Pals thing to have people start registering their mixed breeds? Surely $$$$$ had nothing to do with it.

    It's a nice fantasy to believe they are really advocating for the health of purebreds but realistically that's not how it works. They would be broke if they started saying "okay, YOU can't register, and YOU can't register, YOU can't either." That's why they haven't done it to this point and likely never will.
     
  20. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    I know in shelties people have been talking about merle x merle way before Chris's articles. That said I have talked to him a few times years ago and talked to BC people about him. He really seems to agree with no one about dog breeding- the working 'sheeple' (he calls them) or the show crowd. I do think he brings up some good points though sometimes, even if he is a bit sensationalist in his articles.

    I would personally like to see further research done on breeds like collies and shelties versus koolies and catahoulas. I looked into koolies probably almost 5 years ago and noticed the vast amounts of merle x merle breedings and breeders stating they would never cross to a solid colored dog and it shocked me. But they swear up and down they have no issues like they do in shelties. In shelties merle x merle is just not a good idea due to the deformities. Anyways, I'd like to see how and why there seems to be a difference between breeds.

    I think the ethics of doing a scientific study of these things is a little iffy but I think doing some completely documented merle x merle crosses where we know people aren't behind the scenes euthanizing deformed pups could only benefit dogs as a whole.
     

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