What your breeder said
Here's the skinny...
The sire of your dog is Rusty, he is OFA Good. Mom is Fudge
Bear, is OFA Good, preliminary,
This is dangerous. A 12-month prelim can still become dysplastic by 24 months--that's why the OFA won't certify hips before 24 months. If it was a 23-month prelim or something, that's relatively safe, but a young prelim is not acceptable.
but has been retired from breeding
since I started with the second generation - F1B. She's now hunting
in north Idaho, Rusty is still siring wonderful healthy dogs.
I have researched and know the pedigrees of all my breeding
stock, and there have been no incidences of genetic abnormalities and
when BOTH parents of a dog have been tested negative for some of
these, it will not occur in their subsequent litters.
Totally, totally, TOTALLY false! Any breeder who says that there is no evidence of genetic abnormalities in their stock either has no clue what's in their pedigrees or is blowing smoke. That sentence right there is one that my breed club quotes in the "how to tell that you're dealing with a bad breeder" literature. There is NO SUCH thing as a perfectly healthy pedigree--that's laughable. I kill myself to breed healthy dogs, have tapped into several of the healthiest pedigrees in the country and around the world, and in the extended pedigree (cousins, second cousins, etc.) there's Addison's, mitral valve prolapse, bloat, cancer, megaesophagus, epilepsy, cataracts, autoimmune hypothyroidism...I could go on. And, furthermore, I know the name, registered name, and owner's name of every single dog that died young of any of those diseases. ALL dogs are prone to genetic disorders; saying that there's no history of it in a pedigree is just simply impossible.
Also, the statement that cleared parents clear the kids is totally false--she says it herself below. Almost all genetic diseases in dogs are recessive, not dominant. That means you can have generation after generation clear and still end up with an entire litter of sick puppies. All of the poodle problems--adrenal problems, epilepsy, dysplasia--and the lab problems--dysplasia, heart problems, diabetes, etc.--are recessive. You cannot clear them in a pedigree by breeding two healthy dogs. If we could, breeding would be a much easier and less heartbreaking task.
I am confident in the health of my breeding dogs, am into my
When her fourth GENERATION is into its fourth year, then she can say something about the health of her breeding dogs. A stud dog isn't declared to be a healthy producer until his youngest kids are at least six--unless she bred really young, her OLDEST puppies will now be two.
and have had one hip dysplasia - but that in itself, is
quite good. Do some research on the internet and you will see that
parents can be 'excellent' and produce dysplastic dogs and dysplastic
parents can produce excellent pups. The percentages are only slightly
in favor of excellent/good parents - it can be very frustrating.
Slightly in favor is not true. Dysplasia is a very difficult disease to deal with because it's "100% genetics and then 100% management"--breeding is extremely important, but so is raising the puppies, exercise, injuries, and so on. But it is incontrovertible that breeding dogs with tighter hips produces dogs with tighter hips, and that breeding dogs with looser hips increases the chance that you'll get looser hips.
I've been breeding AKC breeds since I was in Jr High School,
and I'm now 63 - my mother bred and showed Kerry Blue terriers and
Poodles during my childhood. I've have had lifetime experience and
have forgotten more than most people know and was whelping litters
and showing amateur for my mother at a very young age.
I've produced Cairn Terriers and Jack Russells that are AKC
champions, and guess what, I've never joined 'The Cairn Club' or any
dog breed clubs!
And she's bragging about that? And it's not the "Cairn Club," it's the Cairn Terrier Club of America. There's a reason you join the breed clubs--it's to give back. The breed clubs organize rescue, sponsor the shows, give health clinics, award scholarships, subsidize health research grants, and determine the standard, judge's education, breeder referrals, and all of the other good work that a national breed's public face is responsible for. Membership SHOULD be highly sought-after, because if you're not a member you're just a complainer. Involved breeders become a part of the process.
Of course I breed to make money - any breeder that is doing a
good job, is promoting what they are doing, constantly upgrading and
seeking higher goals for their dogs, doesn't do it for 'fun.' It's
very expensive! My vets treat me very well, they need me!
I never go to an outside male, I buy what I want because I
can afford to, and I am very proud of what I'm doing and the results
that I've had.
OH MY LORD. I can't even do this. I can't even believe what she just said. I think you need to know that to a responsible breeder, the above paragraph is absolute heresy. It more than confirms everything that I worried about in every mixed-breed breeder I have ever heard about or read about. I'm literally shaking.
OK, I went away for a while. I want to make it very clear WHY the above made me so mad.
1) Good breeders do what they are doing to improve and preserve their chosen breed. It is never, NEVER, N E V E R to make money. You cannot do this right and make money! I'm happy to show you my tax returns, and I have the backing of oh, about a thousand other breeders, that good breeders do not make a profit that makes any difference. We MAY clear a grand on the year, but next year we'll lose ten. Let's look at all of my costs that a Labradoodle breeder does not have:
a) Cost to show a dog for one weekend: $300. Plus gas, meals, hotel: $500.
Now multiply that by at least ten weekends a year--many breeders do twenty to forty, but I can only afford ten. So $3000-5000 for the year.
b) Heart ultrasounds for all of my breeding-age dogs: $1200. Plus food, gas, to get to a cardiac specialist.
c) Penn Hip exams x3: $980. Plus food, gas.
d) Thyroid exams x3: $300.
d) Travel to stud dog, 10 hours, 5 nights hotel: $700
e) Stud fee: $1000
f) AI fee because first breeding did not take: $1500
That's a typical outgo for ONE breeding. My costs are over $10,000 for the year NOT including food, normal vet bills, whelping supplies, etc. Let's say that we have a big healthy litter, 11 puppies. Two were kept, not sold. Half of the sale price of the puppies went to the bitch's owner, half to me. Puppies were sold for $1100 each; that means that I cleared a grand total of $4900 against my 10k outgo.
Let's say I one more litter expected for the year. I don't have to re-do the health testing, so I MAY have a chance of breaking even for the year if I have over five live puppies. But now let's add food: $1500/yr including supplements, etc. for four Danes. Normal vet bills: Another $1000. It typically costs me about 2k to get a litter from birth to sale, so knock that off as well. I'm never, ever going to make money at this, especially since the costs remain constant but I only breed every other or every third year.
Now take away ALL of that 10K expense. No showing, minimal health testing, no travel, no handler's fees, no club dues, no AI, no stud fees. Now jack the sale price to $1600 or $2000 each. Now you're talking--yup, you can make quite a good living if you keep six or seven females around and breed them every year.
2) OK, now on the buying stud dogs instead of traveling to them: The point has been made in this thread that purebred breeders are inbreeding. Many do linebreed, but we virtually never repeat a breeding. We use each of the precious breedings of our girls (typically a maximum of three breedings in her lifetime, and many are only bred once) to a different stud dog precisely because we want to keep the gene pool as diversified as possible. And we work very, very hard to find the stud dogs that most closely match what we are striving for in terms of temperament, health, conformation, and longevity. We do not do a breeding unless we are confident that the resulting puppies have a good chance of being better examples of the breed than their parents are.
Breeders-for-profit use the same stud dog on multiple bitches, even related bitches, for repeated litters. They produce more puppies with less genetic diversity, and they breed purely for convenience or for the pet market, not to improve the breed. But they don't care, because there's no breed to improve! Any time you cross any Lab and any poodle, zowie! A $2000 labradoodle! You can make 'em like magic, no need to worry about your bloodline or what exactly you're doing by breeding Big Gus to six different bitches--cause if they all end up unhealthy, you can just start all over! I can't do that. I create the world I live in, and if I breed stupidly I'm stuck with my own dumb choices.
If you ask that kind of breeder why Little Jo Jo was bred to Annie, the response is "I knew the puppies would be so cute!' or "I was looking to get some dark chocolate ones" or "I just liked the last litter so much!" If you ask a good breeder why a particular dog was bred to a girl, she'll say "Jo Jo is just an incredibly sound, good-moving dog, and he's so moderate and balanced. He's got a head on his shoulders and his pedigree shows just the spring of rib and width that I need for this girl. I love her head and her neck length is perfect, but she needs more upper-arm layback and Jo Jo's dad is known for producing that. I also wanted to lock in the excellent bite and full dentition on both sides of the pedigree. And I'm thrilled with both dogs' temperaments and longevity."
Look, I know how to breed dogs. Shannon does too, and has lots more experience than I do. Don't you think we'd LIKE to make $2000 on each puppy? Don't you think we'd LOVE to make a profit doing what we're passionate about? She has the advantage of being a trainer, but I subsidise my breeding with my normal job, not the other way around. Trust me when I say that it would be child's play for me to set up an incredibly profitable labradoodle business--so why don't I? They're so cute; they sell like hotcakes, they appear to be decent dogs with decent temperaments. So why don't I, and why doesn't Shannon? The fact that our consciences are so incredibly offended by the way these dogs are bred should, I hope, be telling. For us this is an ETHICAL issue.