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I have seen a lot about different Golden types and also how breeders need to stop breeding the "generic show dog" and how judges need to stop gravitating towards that. I, however, am not entirely sure what that entails. Is this a flashier dog physically? Temperament wise? Could someone help me understand, in regards to Goldens, what is meant by a generic show dog versus a dog bred to breed standard?
 

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Puddles
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Many breeders are inclined to breed for large boned dogs with excessive coats. The quality breeders are breeding a more functional dog that preserves the true standard. Nothing in the standard about a coat that requires hours to maintain or feet & legs that are huge. It's a sporting dog and original design was for this purpose! If you look at a dog bred many decades back you can see which breeders are still breeding dogs that are consistent with the original purpose/standard, function / structure / build & coat.
But flashy seems to sell or just preferred by some breeders and some judges are more inclined to go with flash over function. Structure & temperament should be all golden either way.
I have one of each :) Sips is my heart dog but I would go with the preservation type breeder vs. flash any day of the week. Never again will I get a dog with too much coat and paws like a lion cub. A nice dense, weather resistant coat is the way to go!
This is just my observation and sure the breeders on the GRF can provide better info.
 

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Kate
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Just throwing a bunch of very influential or big name dogs. Please no critiques of the dogs out of respect for their owners and breeders! These weren't/aren't just huge show dogs in this breed, but they were/are also beloved dogs for their owners.

There's a few more that I wanted to add, like Yogi, Beau-D, Stormy, etc... but limited to 10 pictures in a post. :) You can look those dogs up on k9data...

These dogs were ALL bred to breed standard - and many of their kids and descendants - have looks/type that go right back to their famous ancestor.

Set look = that headset, coat, size, bone, topline, tail carriage, and even coloring. Heads, pigment, and winning attitude are things that many breeders struggle to problem solve in what they breed. Once you lose one of the pieces - it's tough to get that back.

If your dog was not bred to breed standard, you are going to have a tough time in the show ring even if a pro handler is talked into handling your dog.


876092


^ Sydney

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^ Presto

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^ Leo

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^ Hobo

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^ James

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^ Blu

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^ Surfurr

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^ Whiskey

876102


^ Blue
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you!

Puddles:

That is my understanding too, but it's still very difficult for me to see. Penalize excess coat, but does this mean the Golden should be a plain dog? Or is it more that flashiness should not come before correctness? What defines too much bone vs the perfect amount? It is all things taken into consideration sort of deal? Sorry, but I really want to understand because it seems to me that all Goldens are flashy, though I believe I have seen some that are "too much"

Kate:

Thank you!! Those are all beautiful dogs and I instantly recognized Presto, as he is Felix's grandsire and I have explored Felix's pedigree pretty extensively! In regards to the question, these are all very correct dogs and not at all what is considered a "generic show dog"? If these are considered excellent examples of the breed, then what do people mean by "generic"?
 

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Maegan
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This is just my opinion, but to me “generic” and “mediocre” kinda mean the same thing here. “Nothing special” also applies. None of the dogs Kate posted are mediocre. I so wish there were more shows going on right now because the best way for you to answer this question is to go to shows, study the dogs and the standard, and decide for yourself. Flash and correctness are not mutually exclusive terms either.

Also keep in mind that not a single show dog in the history of the world has been perfect per breed standard. There are some that have been very, very close, but none that are perfect.

To me, everything about showing goes back to the breed standard - and the many opinions of what it means. Yes, there are breeders that develop kennel blindness, and breeders that rationalize breeding certain types of faults, but there are many that breed for the complete dog. Of the dogs Kate listed/pictured, Yogi is a fantastic example of a complete dog. Check out his backend titles and honorifics. (I’m not saying he’s my favorite or anything, and I have nothing whatsoever against the others.)
 
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Thank you so much!!

Kate:

Hobo is a gorgeous dog and I can totally see the resemblance :eek: Good breeding says a lot...

Maegan:

Thank you! I was sitting here thinking that generic meant flashy or over the top and that we were looking for the "plain workman's dog". I have been trying to understand these discussions but whenever I ask for elaborations on what exactly is meant, the answer is always vague and doesn't help me understand at all what anyone is talking about. I just looked at Yogi (it takes me a bit to find all these dog's on K9Data because I don't know a lot of their registered names 😅) and holy cow all those titles! I may not have shows to attend, but I have several videos from the one show I went to in February and have been looking at those videos trying to see type, and structure, movement, correctness
 

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Maegan
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You may get several different opinions on what “generic show dog” means, but if people are using that phrase to mean “flashy, but incorrect” then I’m not sure they know what the word generic really means. There are absolutely show dogs out there that are overdone (too much bone and coat) and there are also judges that will reward that, but I don’t necessarily consider these dogs to be generic. I just don’t think they are correct. Many breeder judges and sporting dog judges won’t put them up either. It’s the all breed judges that don’t know Goldens really well that put up dogs like that.

On the subject of flash, you can never discount attitude in show dog. You can have the most correct dog in the history of ever and if that dog doesn’t like to show, then they won’t win as much as you’d think. The ones that basically show themselves are the ones that stick in a judge’s mind. Chloe is one example of a dog with attitude that basically shows themselves and judges love her. She holds the breed record for most BISS by a lot. It’s a lot easier for a judge to see all of the good things about a dog if the dog has a “look at me, I’m awesome!” attitude.
 

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A golden doesn't have to be flashy to win, and so much about what makes a golden "flashy" is ATTITUDE. You can take a drop dead gorgeous and correct dog in the ring, and if they don't show well, they just aren't going to look good. There are so many things that go into judging and evaluating dogs that it can be overwhelming. I can't stand judges who say things like, "He has a beautiful shoulder" because they left out the other half of what has to balance the shoulder for correct movement. And just because they have what has been decreed to be a beautiful shoulder doesn't mean they can actually use it when they move. These are sporting dogs; if they can't get down and back without tripping over their own feet or throwing them out of the way, then we have a problem. Same about going around the ring; big open side gait has a place.... in other breeds. When the dog's feet are 4 inches off the ground, it's not correct. It's about finding the GOOD in the dogs, and the balance of all of those things, vs just any dog with gold hair. Where we get in trouble is when people fault judge to the point of pointing to the generic dog just because it doesn't have ___.
 

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Kate
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Other thing to keep in mind is some people abuse or misuse various terms all the time.

For some people, they are literally pulling up pictures of dogs from 100+ years ago and go gaga about these dogs while skimming over the fact that dog shows back then were not a sport like they are now.

Quite honestly - I've not heard conformation dogs referred to as generic.

I have heard of dogs bred for other things and not really conformation being described as a generic retriever by some show folks. I'm not really getting into things like that.
 

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Yes, there is such a thing as a generic show dog.

It bothers me when people pull pictures from even 20 years ago. Not because dog shows have changed, but randomly pulling up picture and "knowing" they were successful show dogs doesn't tell the whole story. There are successful dogs right now that I wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole, but because they win, people will breed to them, never having seen them move, and never having put a finger on them. That, in part, is how we also get generic show dogs. Ask a bitch owner why they did the breeding. It will give you a lot of insight about whether they understand structure, temperament, health, etc and how it all gets wrapped up into one big lottery of puppy genetics.
 

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Kate
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Yes, there is such a thing as a generic show dog.

It bothers me when people pull pictures from even 20 years ago. Not because dog shows have changed, but randomly pulling up picture and "knowing" they were successful show dogs doesn't tell the whole story. There are successful dogs right now that I wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole, but because they win, people will breed to them, never having seen them move, and never having put a finger on them. That, in part, is how we also get generic show dogs. Ask a bitch owner why they did the breeding. It will give you a lot of insight about whether they understand structure, temperament, health, etc and how it all gets wrapped up into one big lottery of puppy genetics.
I think even as active pet owners who aren't breeders... people like myself have heard enough stuff through the grapevine that we would not get a pup from some lines.

Or there's some dogs who I've seen up close in the show ring and was not thrilled about even knowing they have gone on to get HUGE titles (dogs where the handlers really disliked the dogs and felt they had no brains, dogs who I personally think are ugly, etc)...

All the pictures I pulled/posted are dogs who I think were very influential in this breed and they competed in big rings with today's breed standards and level of competition.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Thank you guys!!! The particular group this topic is brought up in is called Canine Construction and Conformation which I enjoy because it offers a lot of insight into conformation that I haven't had before. One of the posts on this particular topics stated, I'm going to quote a piece of one of the posts: "As noted by many, most true breeders no longer look to the show ring to find their stud dogs or next potential bitches. There are so many factors in breeding good sound, healthy dogs that the show ring is no longer a consideration. That is definitely true for many breeds." - Narelle Hammond

These posts are informative, but sometimes too in depth for someone without any experience to quite understand.
 

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That is a very true statement. Some people will always be looking to breed to a top 10 dog, or the most convenient, but a true preservation breeder is always looking for the best dog.
 
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Kate
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Thank you guys!!! The particular group this topic is brought up in is called Canine Construction and Conformation which I enjoy because it offers a lot of insight into conformation that I haven't had before. One of the posts on this particular topics stated, I'm going to quote a piece of one of the posts: "As noted by many, most true breeders no longer look to the show ring to find their stud dogs or next potential bitches. There are so many factors in breeding good sound, healthy dogs that the show ring is no longer a consideration. That is definitely true for many breeds." - Narelle Hammond
That's fine unless it means people are staying home and just using their own stuff. :)
 

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That's fine unless it means people are staying home and just using their own stuff. :)
Yes I agree 😅 I have a lot to learn and on a basic level all of the information makes sense, but when they start getting in depth is when I have a hard time. There are a lot of nuances I still don't quite get
 

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I think you are all referring to style, not type.
Carry on.
 

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Type is based on breed function - for instance, all Goldens who can do the job they were created to do originally can really only do it well if they have correct structure peer the Breed Standard. Everything- EVERYTHING- is for a reason. The stop, it's there so the dog can see over the bird in the water. If it's absent (ski slope stop) the bird is too high in the water.
The shoulder layback and upper arm play into ability to work all day, etc. Every part of the dog is the way it is because we needed it to be that way originally. The Breed Standard has changed very little.
Style otoh is a more fluid thing, and that's what we see changing.

Among my dogs I have a super correct bitch, in almost every way. She gets better as she ages. However, she dislikes showing so finishing her took forever. I could have put her away, bred her in hopes of getting a showier bitch from her, but that OD just calls to me so I did spend the money to get her finished. She was one of that 'win a huge open class and still go reserve' to a showier bitch.
 

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Thank you Robin!

That is what I struggle with understanding, if you have a super correct dog, including temperament, what about the showier dog has it come first? I often hear on my podcast of breeders and handlers talking about the "it" factor. Is that "it" factor the showiness you're referring to?

Is this what people are referring to when they say they say that the show ring is no longer the main factor in looking for their breeding prospects, because it is not always the most correct dog that wins?

And on that same note, if excellent breeders can tell what they want to breed to, how detrimental is it to the breed to be putting the showier dog first over the more correct dog? I have not seen enough shows in person nor have I seen enough Goldens to say that I have seen this in action, but the sentiment seems echo across many breeders (though I sometimes wonder if some echo it because they don't understand why their dogs are not doing well in the ring) and I want to understand it.

Dogs are something I want to be good at understanding and seeing, I understand it takes many years, but I want to be able to look at a dog and really see the quality of that animal and understanding type vs style vs "it" factor I think plays along with that.
 
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