Dwarfism in border collies?

Discussion in 'The Dog Breeds' started by Laurelin, Feb 7, 2013.

  1. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    Ok this is a weird question, but I'll try anyways.

    I see a lot of dogs that look identical to border collies except they are short in the leg. They are always referred to as 'corgi x bc'. Which is probably totally possible. But I was wondering if anyone knew if dwarfism happens in the breed. I know it can happen in other breeds. And these dogs look 100% border collie except for the legs. I was watching a video of one running agility and it behaved 100% border collie too.

    Although on the other hand, some cardis look awfully BC-like so I could see a cardi x BC looking like a short legged BC too.
     
  2. Julee

    Julee UNSTOPPABLE

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    My friend used to have one, thought to be a corgi x BC, but just looked like a stumpy BC.
     
  3. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    I personally have never ever heard of one. Stumpy-tailed, yes, but not dwarfism.
     
  4. milos_mommy

    milos_mommy Active Member

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    I'm definitely no expert, but I don't see any reason why it COULDN'T happen in Border Collies. I think it's possible in any breed.

    I see dogs labeled as corgi mixes frequently, and think they are actually suffering from dwarfism.
     
  5. Kilter

    Kilter New Member

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    Funny, someone on my facebook asked the same thing.

    I don't think it's that common in the breed, at least haven't seen much said about it, but there are a lot of borders that are short on leg and long in the body, show lines mainly, but it's there. Add to that a really thick heavy coat and I could see where it would look like it.

    It could be the mix if it's a cross, a shorter dog would produce shorter legs so who knows.

    I know my girl's line has small dogs in it, she's much smaller than I'm used to seeing, like a bigger sheltie vs. a border, but bear in mind I've just had mostly boys other than one other girl who wasn't that small. Ticket looks like a moose beside her.

    When it's a dog with unknown background anything is possible too....
     
  6. Emily

    Emily Rollin' with my bitches

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    True, but "short on leg and long in the body" is totally different from true chondrodysplastic dwarfism, which is what corgis, doxies, Bassets, etc all have. It's thought to be an autosomal recessive trait (I believe, it's hard to get a straight answer. But if it were dominant and normal proportions were recessive, I imagine corgis would occasionally throw normal-legged dogs, and they do not). You can select for shorter legs and long body in a non-dwarf, but it's not the same as true dwarfism. You can also take dwarves and then further select for exaggeratedly long bodies and shorter legs on top of the mutation - that's the case with modern corgis, they're bred to maintain extreme dwarfism. Historically, corgis were dwarves but lacked exaggeration.

    I've seen dogs labeled as BC/corgi mixed that looked like dwarf BCs for sure. Looking at the color and coat genetics behind both breeds, it seems a little unlikely that everything would line up just so to produce a long coated, black and white dog. I'd buy that dwarfism exists in BCs, esp because of all the long coated dogs you see. It's true some corgis carry for fluff but it seems unlikely that these BCs just manage to find the corgis that all carry for fluff. The dogs labeled BC/corgi mixes that I've seen have all been coated.

    So, um... yeah. In summary, I'd buy that BCs can produce dwarfism.
     
  7. Emily

    Emily Rollin' with my bitches

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    LOL well corgis are also "suffering" from dwarfism, and being a corgiX can entail "suffering" from dwarfism. I can only speak for my breed, but they're generally hardy and long-lived, and have existed as dwarves for hundreds (likely thousands) years. I don't know that chondrodysplastic dwarves of other breeds "suffer" any more than corgis, really.
     
  8. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    Pretty much what Emily said.

    Dwarfism is a possibility in a lot of breeds. I'd even guess it is a possibility in all breeds and more common in some. I have seen enough dogs who definitely looked more like dwarf BCs than any sort of mix to suspect it occurs in that breed. People don't always talk about stuff like that and in carefully bred lines, the chances of producing it might be lower but that doesn't mean it doesn't happen.

    I have seen in person or in photos dwarf GSDs (they can produce both skeletal and hormonal dwarfism, hormonal is more common but skeletal happens too), Goldens, Labs, Cockers, Bichons, Malamutes, Elkhounds, Beagles and Pit Bulls... just to name a few. These dogs would have been labled Corgi, Doxie or Basset mixes if their backgrounds weren't known. I think it's maybe because people don't associate that body type with dwarfism and dwarfism as something that can happen in breeds not known for the trait.
     
  9. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    that's been what I've really been thinking. I know fluffies happen in corgis sometimes but LH is recessive, right? Wouldn't it be unlikely that that would line up just right? And it's not like this is one or two dogs, I've seen dozens of them that look just like purebred longhaired border collies until you look at their legs.

    I've seen dwarf malamutes, labs, and german shepherds so I knew it happens in other breeds.
     
  10. CharlieDog

    CharlieDog Rude and Not Ginger

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    I think you're probably right about a lot of the "mixes" just being dwarfs.

    I've seen dwarf GSDs, and while they're freaking ADORABLE, I think it carries with it some more severe health issues than true dwarfism.
     
  11. Keechak

    Keechak Aussie Obssessed

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    There are some uncommon occurrences of dwarf Aussies. If it's in Aussies I wouldn't be surprised that it would be in Borders since there is a common ancestor and still some crossing of the two breeds together even today.
     
  12. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    That's interesting that you've seen so many -- like I said I've never seen one. The one "short-legged" BC I've seen really looked mixed with something else.

    I wouldn't doubt that many breeds carry such recessives but that they are so rare they almost never double-up, either because it's in the breed or because some cross (known or not) was made in the past. After all a first gen BC/Corgi is probably not going to be a dwarf.

    I wonder if for some reason the genes are far more prevalent in your area or if someone(s) with those genes is doing a lot of close breedings? Do you know the parentage of any of these dwarf BCs?
     
  13. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    Nope, I don't know anything about them. It's really the frequency that's made me think over anything else.

    I did do some looking online at 'borgis' and there is a breeder (I can't remember where they're located) that is breeding BC x corgis and the 2nd gens that are 3/4th BC and 1/4th corgi look like dwarfed BCs. So that's a possibility. I didn't really think of that instead of a straight up 50/50 cross.
     
  14. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    I did not know dwarfism happens in aussies, that's very interesting!
     
  15. milos_mommy

    milos_mommy Active Member

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    I know this, my post was worded badly...I meant the dogs I see, labeled as Corgi X, are purebreds or mixes of other breeds that aren't bred for dwarfism who happen to have dwarfism.

    I do, however, notice that other breeds, where dwarfism is less common, often have "side effects" or traits associated with dwarfism that breeds like bassets, dachshunds, corgis do not typically have....an exaggerated domed skull, or underbite, spinal or joint problems from this. In most (general) cases, dwarfism does not come without some negative effects...why are breeds specifically bred for dwarfism not often seen with those effects?
     
  16. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    Like I said in my other posts, there are two kinds of dwarfism in GSDs. Skeletal or Achondroplastic, the kind that all corgis have and a hormonal kind - Pituitary dwarfism. Dogs with Pituitary dwarfism rarely live more than a few years and there are other health issues associated with it. They appear normal initially but stop growing as puppies, retaining puppy proportions but not corgi-like proportions. They are usually from 10-30lbs, depending on how long they are able to utilize growth hormones. Their coats are fuzzy initially but many become bald as they age.

    This is a 4 year old with Pituitary Dwarfism:
    [​IMG]

    These three dogs are littermates, two have Pituitary Dwarfism:
    [​IMG]

    An adult with the condition who's losing his hair:

    [​IMG]

    GSDs with Achondroplastic Dwarfism:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  17. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    There are issues associated with dwarfism in the dwarf breeds. I have not noticed skull deformities as being normal with dwarfism in dogs though. usually dwarfism (the skeletal kind) is associated with normal heads and torsos but short limbs. There is a higher risk for joint issues and back problems for dogs with dwarfism, both ones purposely bred for and ones not. Also just how dwarf-y dwarf dogs are can vary in both populations as well. Although, as Emily mentioned modern Corgi breeders tend to try to select for more exaggerated dwarf features. In breeds that aren't generally dwarf dogs, you see quite a range.

    All that said, Corgis are generally healthy and long lived breeds. Ziggy is almost 10 years old and physically more sound than a lot of normally proportioned dogs at his age. It isn't uncommon to hear of Corgis living into their mid or upper teens.

    Some more non-dwarf breed dwarf dogs:

    Bull Terrier
    [​IMG]

    Labs
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Dobe
    [​IMG]

    Beagles
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Toller
    [​IMG]

    Great Pyrs
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Malamutes
    [​IMG]
     
  18. BostonBanker

    BostonBanker Active Member

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    I would like the dwarf Great Pyr, thanks.
     
  19. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    I was thinking the same thing about the Doberman :p
     
  20. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    OMG, me too.
     

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