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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 11-25-2012, 08:02 PM
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Wow, I am learning a lot in this thread.
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Old 11-25-2012, 08:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanaRuns View Post
I'd call Gold Rush a commercial kennel, not a puppy mill. True, they have a steady stream of puppies and many dogs and many litters per year. But Ann Johnson is careful about clearances and good lines, shows her dogs, keeps them in a clean environment, doesn't sell to pet stores, and while not in a home environment I understand the dogs get exercise and good care.
Back "in the day" this is how most kennels were run. A lot of dogs strickly in kennels with many people employed by the breeder to take care of them. No one ever called them mills and I don't believe they were.

Lina Basquette's Honey Hollow Kennels is a perfect example. She was a very, very well respected breeder whose dogs are the foundation of a ton of pedigrees. Most if not all, (and she had a lot of dogs), were kept kenneled and were well taken care of. She bred to better the breed, (Danes), which she definitely accomplished. Would I call her a mill? Of course not. But there are those that probably would. This is how it was done before and probably a lot of breeders do it that way today. Is it ideal? No, but I believe the dogs are happy.
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Old 11-25-2012, 08:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Selli-Belle View Post
I believe Hunte does both. They do have their own kennels but they also buy pups from other commercial breeders.
That must be new because they never bred before, they were strictly a broker facility.
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Old 11-25-2012, 08:29 PM
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I'll wade in very carefully here and suggest that there may be another breeder definition, sort of in a grey zone: the "lapsed" hobby breeder. This is the sort of breeder where I got my Toby (unfortunately). Please don't misunderstand me - Toby is my heart, the love of my life, and I'm thrilled to have him, but the fact is that despite best intentions, I didn't do enough research before I got him. His breeder has (had) some CH and CH pointed dogs, used to show/compete and did some (but as it turned out not all) clearances, but didn't keep them current. I would be reluctant to denigrate them to a BYB, but they are, at present, not being responsible hobby breeders. For whatever reason, they've dropped the ball. Am I wrong in thinking they're in a grey zone, a step above a BYB?
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Old 11-25-2012, 08:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Selli-Belle View Post
I believe Hunte does both. They do have their own kennels but they also buy pups from other commercial breeders.

Yes, they do both. They breed and purchase puppies from other breeders who are then at their facility and then sent to various pet stores. As I said, not the ideal situation and certainly not where any of us would want a puppy from, but there have been AKC seminars there and I am told that it is a very nice kennel from some rather discerning people.

Kennels and dog shows in the past were a thing really only the wealthy participated in. Those big kennels were how all the breeds really got started. They were also typically women, although there are some very well known men who were really founding kennels of different breeds, too, which would be the case with goldens, of course.

I know no one likes to think about dogs living in kennels, but they really served their purpose at the time and the people who owned and ran those large kennels were able to advance their breeding programs much faster and always with the best stock, which is not always the case any more.

I know, now you are all thinking I have gone round the bend ......but here are the advantages. Those large kennels did have many people working for them and always had a kennel manager besides the person who actually owned the kennel. Because of the sheer number of dogs that were on the premises and the ability to keep and care for that many dogs, they were able to keep 2, 3 or even 4 puppies from a litter to grow out and see who was actually going to be the best represetative of the breed. Unfortuantely, breeders can't really do that anymore and so we have to rely on our best guess at around 8 weeks old as to which puppy is the best puppy in the litter. Sometimes that puppy is and sometimes it is not. It also allowed for some dogs that were going to need to be culled from a breeding program because they didn't pass a clearance(hips and eyes have been around for a LONG time in our breed), weren't able to conceive, had a breed disqualification or if a number of other things happened. Because they had multiple dogs from the litter, if something happened to one, it didn't wipe their breeding program out and it truly allowed them to concentrate their breeding program around the best of the best.

I have seen all too often with the much smaller hobby breeders that we have now, they keep a girl or boy from a litter and grow them up but if there is a clearance problem, bite issue, or another disqualification to the breed standard, they may not have dogs to breed for years which sets their breeding program back quite a bit. It is hard to build a "line" when you don't have anything to breed.

It is quite the balancing act to be able to keep enough younger dogs so you will have dogs to later show and then breed and still keep your numbers at something that is manageable that one person can handle. But, you have to be able to go on after you have suffered losses and this and the competitiveness of our breed are two big reasons that many people don't stick around as far as being breeders/exhibitors for long.
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Old 11-25-2012, 09:00 PM
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Thanks HVGoldens for this historical perspective on breeding and the practical problems of hobby breeders.
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Old 11-25-2012, 09:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tobysmommy View Post
I'll wade in very carefully here and suggest that there may be another breeder definition, sort of in a grey zone: the "lapsed" hobby breeder. This is the sort of breeder where I got my Toby (unfortunately). Please don't misunderstand me - Toby is my heart, the love of my life, and I'm thrilled to have him, but the fact is that despite best intentions, I didn't do enough research before I got him. His breeder has (had) some CH and CH pointed dogs, used to show/compete and did some (but as it turned out not all) clearances, but didn't keep them current. I would be reluctant to denigrate them to a BYB, but they are, at present, not being responsible hobby breeders. For whatever reason, they've dropped the ball. Am I wrong in thinking they're in a grey zone, a step above a BYB?
Absolutely-this happens!! I call them the "fringe breeders". Many of them used to do things the right way and have stopped for whatever reason and some of them never have really done things the right way. They do clearances, but many times heart clearances are from practioners and if they have a dog that doesn't pass a clearance, it won't stop them from breeding the dog. Eye clearances don't get sent it to be recorded at all but yet they state that they do clearances on their dogs. Which, if you want to get technical, they are doing clearances, just not removing the dogs from a breeding program if they do not clear.

This type of breeder is very hard for the average person who is looking for a puppy to spot. They know how to "talk the talk" and often times have fancy websites depicting them showing their dogs(but most of the time it is matches or UKC or international shows) which in no way can be compared to AKC shows where there is a lot more competition and judging is much more strict, no matter what the venue the person is competing in.

There are actually some people who are actively showing their dogs in AKC events that I feel would fall more into this category than that of a hobby breeder. That term hobby breeder also needs to come with the wherewithall to do what is best for the breed and the dogs specifically and not have anything to do with personal gain.

I do not have any friends who are what I call hobby breeders that haven't taken really hard hits over one thing or another. They raise up a dog and it is lovely and then doesn't pass a clearance or has a bad bite, and they have to do what is right for the breed and remove them from a breeding program. Or they have a beautiful dog who isn't having their needs met by living in a "pack" or hates showing or their mothering skills are not up to par, so they decide in the best interests of the dog, to let them go be an only dog. The times that breeders have lost litters, had girls resorb or boys go sterile and yes, even lose dogs much too young to cancer or have a dog develop PU. But, the hobby breeder stands up and is honest about the issues that they are faced with because their loyalties lie with the breed and they aren't doing this for their egos.
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Old 11-25-2012, 09:52 PM
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I just want to note that I am thrilled to soak up all the wonderful insight and knowledge that people on this forum have to share. I'm learning quite a bit in a number of these more "serious" threads.
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Old 11-26-2012, 08:30 AM
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I want to add that showing your dogs in AKC doesn't make them worthy of breeding, and having a CH or even GRCH before their name also doesn't make them worthy of breeding. It's only one part of the equation.
I have been at shows so many times where the handler/breeder/owner, whatever, was chalking between the dog's toes like crazy to hide the lick stains from ALLERGIES. They breed the dog anyway.
I have been at shows so many times when the handler/breeder/owner, whatever, is standing ringside trying to control a dog aggressive golden, telling people to keep their dogs away because the dog doesn't do well with other dogs. They breed the dog anyway.
Showing a dog in the AKC breed ring is only one part of having dogs worth breeding. There is also health, temperament, biddability, and intelligence which are an integral part of our breed and sadly sometimes seem to fall by the wayside in search of the "CH" that makes the dog "breedable".
By the same token, "clearances" are only part of the equation. We also have DNA tests now that can, and should, be done on breeding stock. What we do with the information after we have it is for the breeders to discuss and decide, but it's out there and we need to use it. Allergies, early cancers, autoimmune diseases, etc. all need to be considered, not just "clearances".
One person who is breeding to Tito has asked for permission to contact his veterinarian and discuss his health. I was impressed with her, to say the least. I feel that it should be done much more often.
Anyway, I'm done ranting.
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CH Rosewood Little Giant, UDX VER RA MHU SH MXP MJP XFP T2BP VCX WCX CCA CGC FFX-OG (born 3-10-2007), also UCH HR UUD UJJ URO1 UHIT a.k.a. "Tito" (the Tito Monster)

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Gibson's Golden Guy, CD, CGC, TDI ( 01-31-1998 - 01-02-2012) a.k.a. "Toby", "HRH"
run free my sweet, sweet loves, I will love you and miss you forever.
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  #20 (permalink)  
Old 11-26-2012, 01:25 PM
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"Showing a dog in the AKC breed ring is only one part of having dogs worth breeding. There is also health, temperament, biddability, and intelligence which are an integral part of our breed and sadly sometimes seem to fall by the wayside in search of the "CH" that makes the dog "breedable"."

For some time I've been wondering as I see all the discussion of the importance of clearances and titles of various sorts who is looking out for maintaining the Golden temperament and how that is assessed before dogs are bred. I like to think that my Zoe is a wonderful example of the Golden temperament, seeming to like and accept all humans and other dogs. She's been exposed to dogs of many sizes and breeds, some pure bred and some rescue mutts . . . the only dog she's ever really had trouble with was a beautiful female Golden about a year older who went after her at the dog park while her owner was telling me how well bred she was . . . sire was a very big name in conformation.

Any comments on how temperament is assessed in determining which dogs will be bred?
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