Dori Anderson, an AKC Breeder of Merit and preservation breeder of Outbackred Australian Terriers, lives in Hartford, Wisconsin. Established in 1983, Outbackred produces show quality Aussies with a focus on temperament, conformation, and structural soundness for future generations. They have produced many AKC Champions.
AKC: How did you get started in breeding dogs?
Dori: We didn’t really choose Aussies; our neighbor Renee chose for us. She introduced us to a tiny little shelter dog who changed our lives. “Miss Scruffie” was an immediate love of our family. Soon we were at our very first dog show at the Wisconsin State Fair Park.
A few years later Mrs. Jennie Worthing introduced herself to us, and she became our trusted mentor. Jennie did some research and discovered who Miss Scruffie, an Australian Terrier, came from originally. Mrs. Worthing also found our Heirloom’s Jinnie O’Outbackred, and Outbackred Australian Terriers began its story. Finally, we found our first show dog, CH Crestwoods Joey Outbackred. He became our foundation stud.
The respect that we have for Mrs. Worthing and her successes as a long-time breeder, owner, and exhibitor of the Aussie made us realize that keeping the line pure, with only occasional carefully planned breedings of outside genetics, improves your chances of obtaining truly quality dogs in your own program. The original breeders from Australia understood that to keep and maintain type and consistency you must always visit the past to preserve in the future. Mrs. Worthing guided our choices in breeding and taught us how to find that perfect “pick” puppy. She reminded us many times that “you cannot keep them all,” and, if a puppy just has too many faults, find the little one a loving home to fill with happiness for many years to come.
AKC: What is the most Important thing to know about Australian Terriers?
Dori: First and foremost, the Australian Terrier is a working terrier that adapts exceptionally well to being a companion. They are not sedentary by nature but will share their couch or chair with you. The Aussie is a rare breed. Their AKC standard must be met to be in our breeding program. Good health is critical to producing great conformation to the standard.
AKC: How has AKC Marketplace helped you find puppy buyers?
Dori: As an AKC Breeder of Merit, I find the Marketplace a superior source of information and education matched by none. The AKC breed standard is available, as well as a great bio on the Australian Terrier. We recommend to our future puppy owners that they check it out at their early convenience, just in case they haven’t had an opportunity. The buyers who are referred by Marketplace are well informed and looking for healthy, well-bred puppies. We highly recommend being a part of the Marketplace.
AKC: What is your favorite question to ask of potential puppy buyers?
Dori: Do you have a fenced or partially fenced yard? Terriers are of the opinion that what they see is theirs and the farther they go, the more they see, and they are after all, territorial terriers!
AKC: What are the main qualities in potential owners?
Dori: We send a family bio questionnaire to all potential buyers. We request information on what type of dwelling, fenced yard, how many in family, any allergies, any other pets, and what species or breed. If dogs, are they spayed/neutered and other issues of interest. We have a health guarantee of several years, if and when the suggested protocols for shots and spay/neuter are followed. And as with all contracts or agreements, we have found that if someone does not wish to complete and return the questionnaire, they are not truly interested in procuring one of OUR little dogs.
AKC: What is the best advice you would give to novice breeders?
Dori: Find the line of dogs you really like and the breeder who will be willing to mentor you – not just send you a dog to show, which may or may not be to the standard. We want the best for our dogs and for future breeders. Be willing to study those pedigrees, find photos of those dogs, listen to your mentor and be willing to question if you don’t agree with their advice. Be willing to become an Heirloom Preservation Breeder. We learned from the best before Preservation Breeding was a “thing.” Don’t just use the buzz word, actually live the life of a true Australian Terrier breeder and preservationist.
AKC: Do your dogs participate in AKC sports?
Dori: We do participate in AKC sports. Number one for us is conformation. We feel the dogs should be judged by qualified AKC Judges to help certify our choices for the future.
Obedience and Rally are great for the companion or the retired show dogs. Dropping on command or returning on command is critical training should your dog decide to leave his yard. Sit, Stay, Come! Good stuff!
We have a couple involved with Barn Hunt. This requires training, and some of them are masters while others think the treats are great.
There are a couple in agility. This sport requires excellent conformation. If those front and rear angles are not to standard, you will find your dog having leg issues. Also, an Australian Terrier can do the course, have a whole do-over, and still beat the time of most of the other competitors. It’s fun to watch and cheer!
Another sport that is particularly entertaining is Coursing and Fast CAT. Those dogs can run when they have that prey drive! Just make sure they take a break between runs.
AKC: What do I like best about breeding dogs?
Dori: That with divine aid and guidance, we have been blessed with some of the best Australian Terriers out there. We have done our due diligence and continue with the Preservation Program. That we have the opportunity to provide the best Aussies to our friends worldwide, and that through them we have amazing friends for life around the globe. Then there is the puppy world. We make a first pick at three days, three weeks, and then three months. Then they sit for a while, and we reconfirm our choices either by examination/evaluation by friends and mentors or in the AKC show ring. Always be a mentor and always pay it forward. It’s not always all about the pretty ribbons; it is about capturing and maintaining the best example of the breed standard as set by AKC.
AKC: Do you have a favorite breeding story?
Dori: Every breeding that results in puppies is a favorite. However, the oddest one took place after we were away at a show and had a live-in helper taking care of the dogs for three days. Three weeks later, I noticed my favorite girl was looking really thin. So, I upped her food calorie intake, and she started to gain her weight back. I thought it was my marvelous food program, and she started to blossom. Later, my husband, Alan, picked her up and said, “She’s pregnant.” I responded, “No she’s not; SHE IS IN LABOR!” Well, she had three lovely little puppies, and we were very pleased. The dog sitter said she didn’t know it would take, so didn’t say anything…