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Fatal Flaws in Working Dogs

Discussion in 'Breeder Discussion' started by NGK, May 1, 2012.

  1. NGK

    NGK Top Dog

    Since ive been told im off track for pointing out flaws in dogs on several threads that I consider contribute to their inability to work, bite or perform (to the best of their ability) I figured I might as well start a new discussion on the subject.

    The 2 threads that were contested were 1st, the Garner dog with the crooked jaw (which I consider a cull) and 2nd, the straight stifled dog in the mid section thread (which I contribute to its lack of tone in the mid section).

    Are their any flaws like the ones above that (as a breeder) you would consider breeding to if the dog showed other good qualities or would you remove the dog from the breeding program? Also, would you consider useing the dog in a sporting contest with said flaws or do you think the risk to your dog and your wallet would be too great?

    I'm sure were in for a shit show here but what the hell, voice your opinions!!!

    NGK
     
  2. KBK

    KBK Big Dog

    Don't have the answers but I can see how a straight / overangulated stifle or cow hocked dog would be less effective in a sporting field due to not having the same drive from the rear as a properly constructed dog.

    Saying that, I'm pretty certain there have been good dogs with the above structural faults that overcame there faults due to being strong in other areas.

    Question is, do you breed to the deep game or hard biting cow hocked dog or look for something else? For me I think there are probably enough good dogs to choose from to save you adding structural weakness to your program
     
  3. Tigerlines

    Tigerlines Banned

    NKG, IMO the issue with the stifle is caused by the loin not the other way round.....cow hocks are not fault.
     
  4. sadieblues

    sadieblues Premium Member Premium Member

    I would like to here benthere and icepicks opinion on this good thread NGK
     
  5. KBK

    KBK Big Dog

    Cow hocks are a fault, not the worst, but still a fault. A dog that's cow hocked will have to use up more energy than an identical straight hocked dog over the same distance therefore having an effect on endurance / muscle fatigue. It might not be a huge difference but a difference nonetheless
     
  6. sadieblues

    sadieblues Premium Member Premium Member

    NGK when you said you breed for structurely sound dogs what faults would you consider breeding? I ask because every dog has faults some minor and some major but what things would be on the top of your list to remove from the gene pools. Also do you health test Ofa and penhipp? I plan on doing it just for peace of mind I wanted to do cardiac as well as hips and elbows. I know not many working breeders health test so I figured I would ask lol.
     
  7. NGK

    NGK Top Dog

    Im of the opinion that the stifle is just one of the links in the chain that contribute to drive train strength in the dog. If you have a stifle that is overly straight the dog when faced with fatigue will buckle when pushed as the muscles responsible for driving the dog forward will no longer be able to maintain the position of the leg and therefore the leg will straighten and fall back against resistance. That being said, during a heavy workload when faced with fatigue the same dog will begin to rely on front end strength to compensate for the weakness in its hind end which will eliminate the abdomens work by a percentage.

    I wrestled in high school, im sure you all have seen an olympic wrestling stance, legs bent, leaning forward with a slight crunch to the abs to increase power. This very stance will increase the strength of your Core (midsection) every time you assume said stance. Imagine standing with straight legs and trying to avoid being taken down with only your core strength, you would not be able to utilize your core strength without bending your legs and leaning slighly forward (crunching your abs).

    I see it the same in a dog with straight legs, their ability to strengthen their core is reduced and their ability to utilize their core strength is limited more and more with fatigue.

    I have owned dogs with these flaws in the past and have noticed a big difference in their endurance and ability to work, im not saying that I couldn't put them into shape i am only saying that it was more difficult and the work had to be varied. With that being said i did notice a big difference in thier performance and endurance and found that they had less gas in their tank in the long run. As a breeder I chose not to breed to those dogs because I was able to obtain better results with dogs who had a well bent working hind end as well as saved alot of time keeping them.

    NGK
     
  8. NGK

    NGK Top Dog

    I would breed to a blind dog if he was a perfect physical specimin and game. When we first started breeding to the line we now call our own we had some flaws pop up here and there that we have since eliminated, one being straight stifle/cow hocked. I explained why in the above post so no need to elaborate unless ive missed something and am asked to explain furthar. Any other flaw that would cause the dog to not perform at the highest working level would also be eliminated as well as congenial birth defects both physical and internal. I also consider man biting a flaw and have removed it from the genepool with success so far but thats one of those things that can arrise and has to be taken care of immediatly with no exceptions.

    We did test the dogs for many things when we started to see problems and on the recomendation of the vets removed some dogs from the brood program due to unseen faults, one being a heart murmor which was caused by over muscling of the heart. This was a fault that most would not have caught as its not something you can see and if developed later in life when the old dog isnt working could easily slip through the cracks.

    NGK
     
  9. benthere

    benthere CH Dog Staff Member

    OK Sadie here goes:
    The only truly fatal flaws in a dog are in their heart & mind. Everything else can be overcome if the dog has enough will and a few tools. I have seen straight stifled dogs out dance and maneuver dogs with perfect angulation. Dogs with crooked bites sometimes bite harder than dogs with perfect bites. Some of the strongest dogs I have known were grossly cowhocked-but you sure as hell couldn't push 'em backwards When the dog drives forward they straighten out and act like springs. In my world "Pretty is as Pretty does". I have seen a lot of physically perfect dogs that weren't worth a nickel cause their minds weren't right. In my opinion the front end of the dog is more important than the back end.
     
  10. Icepick

    Icepick Banned

    Well said benthere and I put little stock in under bites, overbites, or how the stifle looks. If you want to see a dog with a terrible looking stifle look at ONLINE PEDIGREES :: [1509] :: RATLIFF'S CHEWY (MALOY'S IRON DAISY)
    Her back end looked like a damn seals, but she was pretty damn good. The only thing that does concern me in structure is some dogs have tooth picks for front legs, but I would look to breed to improve that structural flaw if the dog showed good where it mattered.
     
  11. sadieblues

    sadieblues Premium Member Premium Member

    Thank you Benthere that's what I was looking for what are some faults in the front end of a dog that could seriously impact their ability or strength?
     
  12. NGK

    NGK Top Dog

    Im glad you said "outdance" rather than overpower in relation to a straight stifled dog as this shows that the dog was aware of its own flaw and found a way to outsmart the other dog and work around its weakness. The same dog trying to overpower and push the other around would surely change the outcome. I can forgive a cowhocked dog (stifles pointing outward) if they are functional and have owned good dogs with this trait in the past, I don't really consider it a structural fault as its more of a show fault IMO.

    NGK
     
  13. benthere

    benthere CH Dog Staff Member

    Sadie,
    The worst faults a dog can have in the front end are being fine &/or narrow. I believe it was Garner who once said "the dog with the bigger neck will win-bet on it". Ideally a dog should have a thick, wide, heavily muscled front end with a thick, strong neck-designed to take & give punishment. Awhile back there was a post on the history page with pictures of Banjo. I wanted to make a post contrasting his front end with that of Gr Ch Matthew from the pictures of him on this board because that is what is really wrong with the show dogs these days - Their front ends are too narrow & fine. I tried to find the pictures but couldn't.
     
  14. mat.jpg 1211mat3rd.jpg good body not so head.jpg

    Here's some pics for you Ben of my fine boned show dog. Steal Hearts's G/C XVIII Matthew
     
  15. benthere

    benthere CH Dog Staff Member

    If you could find the pictures of Banjo, you might understand what I was trying to say. Matthew is a very good looking dog, but does not have ideal pit dog conformation IMO. No insult intended and I applaud what you have accomplished with the dog. I just think the judges are going in the wrong direction.
     
  16. Tigerlines

    Tigerlines Banned

    bull dog.......
     
  17. sadieblues

    sadieblues Premium Member Premium Member


    Thank you benthere for answering my questions they have been very helpful. I know what you mean about being narrow in the front I have a buck female that is really narrow her nickname is narrow butt lol. And then I have my male who I feel has a very strong structure and very solid in the front end his pasterns are not very great but other than that I believe he's pretty strong. What do you think?

    My male-

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    And then here is the female bless her heart she will be 1 in June but she is sooo narrow LOL and rangy I can't imagine that changing much as I am sure it's just genetic

    [​IMG]

    Also notice how her feet slightly toe outward? I don't suppose that could hinder performance could it?
     
  18. Icepick

    Icepick Banned

    My guess is that she may run a bit funny lol, and she will put on some mass in the next 12 months.
     
  19. sadieblues

    sadieblues Premium Member Premium Member

    LOL Ice pick she's so goofy looking she probably does it and I don't even know it ... I like her though I don't really get into all the showing at least not yet so I don't know if the judges would snub her or not probably lol.

    Benthere-
    I don't know what you think about him but he to me seems to have a very strong conformation and he could probably take some serious punishment. I am not an expert on this so I am going to let you tell me he's not huge he's about 48 lbs but he is built like a tank lol must be those yellow dogs in his ped lol I would be interested in your feedback ...

    [​IMG]
     
  20. benthere

    benthere CH Dog Staff Member

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