Breeders and Inbreeding - Any way to tell?

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Mile Sullivan:
I personally know two breeders who severely inbreed their dogs and then sell them. They actually will take a female from the litter, breed her with her father until she can't produce any longer, and then repeat the cycle with the next litter. The result: Both breeders have sold dogs who later developed epilepsy, cancer, poor temperament and a whole variety of other problems. This seems to be a wide spread problem here in the northeast. If you ask these breeders about their breeding practices, they will lie right to your face! Please, I'M NOT SAYING ALL BREEDERS DO THIS BUT YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE.

What really gets me is that some (I said SOME not ALL) of these breeders are the same ones who try to force the AKC "limited" registration or produce ridiculous contracts preventing you from breeding your own dogs. I believe this is a way for them to stem competition from new breeders rather than their "holier than thou" attitude of claiming it's to prevent irresponsible breeding. Some of these breeders also keep their dogs confined to small pens. They are in fact miniature puppy mills; the same puppy mills they scream and holler about.
Even more amazing is that these same inbred dogs are AKC registered!

I know another breeder who breeds labs and is very conscientious about it. He told me that inbreeding is such a problem in this area that he had to drive out to the midwest to find dogs he considered to be good quality lineage so he could breed quality puppies. So far, not a singly puppy has had any problems that he knows of. I know this guy quite well and believe he really does breed a high caliber lab. (His litters are not frequent and he has a long waiting list so I'm not going to give out his name in case you wanted to ask)

So, enough rambling. My question is: Is there any way to tell if a puppy has been inbred or overbred? You can't trust the unscrupulous breeders to tell the truth, and you can't rely on the AKC to know, what other options are there? I've found references from other people to be unreliable. I have heard that there is DNA technology for dogs now. Could this be used to tell the quality of a breed?

Something really has to be done about this. Any ideas?

Thanks,
Mike
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Diana:
(snip rant)
[nq:1]So, enough rambling. My question is: Is there any way to tell if a puppy has been inbred or overbred? ... used to tell the quality of a breed? Something really has to be done about this. Any ideas? Thanks, Mike[/nq]
I'm not a breeder but I've not long bought a puppy after a fair bit of research so I figure I'm qualified enough to answer some part of your question.. the answer is really pretty much down to common sense.

If you ask questions about health, health testing, why the pups were bred, how often they are bred etc and the person is honest and open with you ~ and the waiting list is always a good sign, if its genuine. ~ then you might want to move on to the next step and go to meet their dogs.

If the dogs are happy, comfortable with people and the breeders are obviously proud of them, talk to them and the dogs are responsive and obedient to their owners commands without looking obviously over or under keen (breed specific traits aside regarding human attentiveness), you've got a better chance that these dogs enjoy a loving family life.

If you don't find these things apply, then just don't buy ~ simple.

Diana
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Tee:
Mike, inbreeding or line-breeding in dogs is not only normal but acceptable. When people think of inbreeding they think of human/human where defects are likely to happen. That's not the case with dogs. Many breeders line breed to either try and double up on specific traits they can't find available elsewhere or to keep specific traits out that would come in from outside lines. A breeder who sells on limited registration does so to prevent buyers from breeding the puppies unless they intend to show them and prove that they are worthy (in terms of conformation) to be bred.

They're keeping their pups from going to homes where they'll be little more than money-makers, overbred, and under-loved. IMO any breeder who sells on limited registration or s/n contracts should be given a large pat on the back for doing something to help decrease the number of unwanted pets in the world.

Tara
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Mary Healey:
[nq:1]So, enough rambling. My question is: Is there any way to tell if a puppy has been inbred or overbred?[/nq]
Look at a 3-generation pedigree.
[nq:1]...I have heard that there is DNA technology for dogs now. Could this be used to tell the quality of a breed?[/nq]
No.

Mary H. and the Ames National Zoo: Regis, Sam-I-Am, Noah (1992-2001), Ranger, Duke,
felines, and finches
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Kathleen:
[nq:1]I personally know two breeders who severely inbreed their dogs and then sell them. They actually will take a female ... this be used to tell the quality of a breed? Something really has to be done about this. Any ideas?[/nq]As an earlier poster pointed out, "in-breeding", or rather, line breeding is a pretty common, widely accepted practice. It's also the only way to weed out undesirable recessive genes. Reputable breeders make no bones about it - it's not a secret. If this is something that bothers you, you should be looking at the parents' pedigrees. If the same names keep popping up on both sides of the family, the pups are line-bred. If the breeder doesn't have the parents' pedigrees available or refuses to show them to you, that's a major red flag.

Obviously this won't protect you from the occasional fruitcake who is unscrupulous enough to fudge the dogs' documentation, but checking references and reputations should be enough to smoke out these characters. As to your complaint about line-breeding breeders with restrictive contracts, aren't you sort of contradicting yourself? If genetics behind these dogs is so faulty, why would you even consider breeding one of them?
Kathleen Hansen
Z-Control Skid Boots
Leg armor for gonzo dogs!
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Christy:
[nq:1]I personally know two breeders who severely inbreed their dogs and then sell them. They actually will take a female from the litter, breed her with her father until she can't produce any longer, and then repeat the cycle with the next litter.[/nq]
Those sound like really lousy breeders.
The result: Both breeders have
[nq:1]sold dogs who later developed epilepsy, cancer, poor temperament and a whole variety of other problems. This seems to be ... will lie right to your face! Please, I'M NOT SAYING ALL BREEDERS DO THIS BUT YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE.[/nq]
I'd say very few breeders do this, and no responsible breeders would consider breeding a dog nonstop until they can't produce any more, or breeding dogs chock-full of health problems. Unfortunately, irresponsible breeders are the vast majority.
[nq:1]What really gets me is that some (I said SOME not ALL) of these breeders are the same ones who try to force the AKC "limited" registration or produce ridiculous contracts preventing you from breeding your own dogs.[/nq]
Huh. I find both those things to be the height of responsibility, and I would not consider buying a puppy from a breeder who did not do this with their pet dogs. Why in the world would a responsible breeder who worked hard for years, researching lines, doing health testings, showing/working their dogs, etc. with the goal of breeding only the best, allow their non-breeding -quaality dogs to be bred by some yokel for a cash crop? That is what is ridiculous!
I believe this is a way for them to stem
[nq:1]competition from new breeders[/nq]
What is this competition thing I hear about? There aren't enough responsible breeders to fill the demands of the puppy market (because, of course, responsible breeders don't breed to fill demands!) and I highly doubt that a responsible breeder with well-bred puppies would have a problem placing their puppies because some Joe Schmoe with two backyard dogs has litter after litter of poorly bred pups. Educated people would rather wait for the well bred dog than buy a BYB puppy just because it is there for the taking.

rather than their "holier than thou"
[nq:1]attitude of claiming it's to prevent irresponsible breeding. Some of these breeders also keep their dogs confined to small pens. They are in fact miniature puppy mills; the same puppy mills they scream and holler about.[/nq]
Lots of breeders keep their dogs confined. If you have multiple intact dogs and bitches and don't have a way to confine your dogs, you will have serious problems! The difference is that puppy mill dogs don't ever get out - no human contact, no training and socializing, no life at all. Sure, there are probably some breeders who claim to be responsible who raise their dogs that way, but the truly responsible ones do not.
[nq:1]Even more amazing is that these same inbred dogs are AKC registered![/nq]
Why is that amazing? Registration is nothing more than a certificate of parentage, and if the parents are registered and the litter is registered, it isn't amazing to register a puppy. The AKC cannot police breeders who linebreed or inbreed - those are breeding decisions that the breeder is responsible for, and if a puppy buyer doesn't like it, they vote with their feet.
[nq:1]I know another breeder who breeds labs and is very conscientious about it. He told me that inbreeding is such ... has a long waiting list so I'm not going to give out his name in case you wanted to ask)[/nq]
It sounds like you don't know what inbreeding and linebreeding are, and you are in an area rife with puppy mills and backyard breeders. You might want to do some research on what a responsible breeder is, so you will be able to recognize one when you see it (hint - no one who breeds just to produce puppies will fit that description, including your lab breeder friend.)
[nq:1]So, enough rambling. My question is: Is there any way to tell if a puppy has been inbred or overbred? You can't trust the unscrupulous breeders to tell the truth,[/nq]
Don't patronize the unscrupulous breeders and you'll be fine.

and you can't rely on the AKC to know,
[nq:1]what other options are there? I've found references from other people to be unreliable. I have heard that there is DNA technology for dogs now. Could this be used to tell the quality of a breed?[/nq]
I don't think you comprehend what quality is when referring to dogs. Just having parents that are unrelated does not equal quality. Neither does having parents who are related, for that matter.
And no, there is no way to DNA test for inbreeding. You're going to have to
1) learn what inbreeding and linebreeding are and how they are used to settype in breeds; 2) accept that most responsible breeders practice some level of inbreeding/linebreeding and determine what you're comfortable with and c) find a breeder you can trust who is responsible (even if they sell you a puppy that you have to spay/neuter so you can't make your own l'il puppy mill!)
Christy
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Tirya:
A little OT, and I'll admit that my breeding knowledge is from animals other than dogs, but is father/daughter breeding accepted as common practice in the dog world? Or do responsible line/inbreeders try to only come as close as grandfather/granddaughter?
Just curious,
Tirya

TDC Inca Jeeper
A dirty Jeep is a happy Jeep.
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Andrea:
[nq:1]I personally know two breeders who severely inbreed their dogs and then sell them. They actually will take a female from the litter, breed her with her father[/nq]
Not /necessarily/ a horrible thing to do, mind you, provided it is done by someone with the knowledge of the line, their dogs, proper health testing, etc. It may also vary from breed to breed in terms of its acceptibility. Linebreeding, (a step out from what is commonly called inbreeding in dogs eg father/daughter, brother/sister, etc) is very common and often preferred.
[nq:1]until she can't produce any longer,[/nq]
Ugh.
and then
[nq:1]repeat the cycle with the next litter.[/nq]
Ugh, ugh, ugh.
[nq:1]What really gets me is that some (I said SOME not ALL) of these breeders are the same ones who try to force the AKC "limited" registration or produce ridiculous contracts preventing you from breeding your own dogs.[/nq]
This is a GOOD thing. Sorry, no sympathy from me. I would be suspect of any breeder who didn't. Any non-show pup from me goes out this way. Heck, my show pups go out with a contract and a co-ownership.

I believe this is a way for them to stem
[nq:1]competition from new breeders rather than their "holier than thou" attitude of claiming it's to prevent irresponsible breeding.[/nq]
Well, your welcome to your opinion. You might be right in some cases. Your characterization of responsible breeders doesn't work in your favor here. The reason doesn't matter, because less dogs is a good thing. There is no need for the average pet owner to breed a dog, ~especially~ if it's from the folks described above, assuming you've done so accurately. You can't have it both ways here. If you think there's a problem with their breeding practices, why would you want to breed the offsping? This is a GOOD thing.

If you are interested in becoming involved with purebred dogs, you intend to show/work your dogs and health screen, most breeders are more than happy to work with you. But you have to be willing to show your dedication and sincerity. Joe Blow pet owner has neither the desire to dedicate the time to learn what is needed to breed dogs well, nor is he usually equiped with it at the outset. Such a person should not be breeding dogs. Period.
[nq:1]Even more amazing is that these same inbred dogs are AKC registered![/nq]
Why is that amazing? If they are purebred, and correctly registered, then why should the registry not accept them?
I know this guy
[nq:1]quite well and believe he really does breed a high caliber lab. (His litters are not frequent and he has a long waiting list so I'm not going to give out his name in case you wanted to ask)[/nq]
That's just stupid. You should /promote/ good breeders.

My question is: Is there any way to tell if a
[nq:1]puppy has been inbred[/nq]
The pedigree.
[nq:1]or overbred?[/nq]
Get a sire or dam report from the AKC. Assuming you mean bred many times by "overbred".
[nq:1]Could this be used to tell the quality of a breed?[/nq]
Short answer: No.

-Andrea Stone
Saorsa Basenjis
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