Advice from the Breeder: Considerations
By Mary M. Rodgers
True breeders represent a small
portion of the dog world. Some say true breeders are
born not made.
The author, Mary M.
Rodgers, receives the 2003 American Kennel
Club Breeder of the Year Award.
So many things must be experienced over and over rather
than by simply reading a book, although there are
wonderful books and publications from which to glean
important information. Once you realize how important
the consideration of the #8220;whole dog#8221; is,
perhaps you could join the ranks of the successful
The biggest hurdle and hardest thing to learn about
breeding is being able to recognize #8220;type#8221;
and #8220;style#8221; and to keep and breed from
those dogs that possess that #8220;type#8221; and
#8220;style#8221; that most closely match the breed#8217;s
standard. If you don#8217;t, you will never have
that wonderful specimen that stands apart from the
others, that #8220;Great One!#8221; Type is defined
as the dog that is in perfect balance and most closely
resembles its breed standard in disposition and appearance.
Style is very close to type. While a little hard to
define, style is a grace and assurance that sets one
dog apart from another. Never breed to the top winner
for the sake of selling the puppies unless it is the
right dog for you and has the #8220;type#8221; and
#8220;style#8221; that you want in your bloodline.
Obtaining and breeding
from the best bitch possible is
extremely important. Type, virtues, and a strong pedigree
full of good dogs will put you way ahead very fast.
If your bitch doesn#8217;t have those fundamentals,
then just don#8217;t breed her. Trying to upgrade
is not something that is done in breeding dogs.
A portrait of top-winning
Dobermans from Rodgers' kennel.
Consider these other points before planning a breeding:
Don#8217;t breed faults together. Don#8217;t fixate
on one or two virtues while forgetting it is the whole
dog that matters. By the same token, don#8217;t cast
out a dog that has an obvious fault as long as it
has many virtues. There is no perfect animal. When
choosing a potential stud dog, you must judge him
by his best progeny and realize that every breeding
doesn#8217;t click and not all of the offspring will
be super. Finally, do you have enough time to care
for a young litter and the facilities to keep baby
puppies until they are placed in the proper situations
for them? You must be prepared for anything to happen.
A dose of luck will help too!
Mary M. Rodgers was named AKC
Breeder of the Year at the 2003 AKC/Eukanuba National
Championship. Her Marienburg kennel has produced more
than 100 champion Doberman Pinschers, including the
number-one dog of 2002 and a two-year number-one winner
who alone sired more than 85 American champions.
Article may not be reprinted without permission.
|| Ronald N. Rella, director,
Theresa Shea, editor | Email: AKCbreeder@akc.org
| Joanne Beacon, designer
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© The American Kennel Club 2005