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post #176 of 201 (permalink) Old 04-25-2018, 07:00 PM
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Originally Posted by rtewell View Post
Dobebug I liked and enjoyed reading you reply, and I am really glad that you have had good luck with a show conformation breeders,
You know what rtewell? I'm now wondering if we are talking about different registries here?

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My Dobes of the 70's and that I breed and owned had much better structure, and confirmation than the Doberman of today and had life of 13 to 16 year of age. With that being said breeding today is much different,
This is the point at which I got to wondering if we were trying to compare apples and walnuts? I have to ask--in what manner do you think breeding today is much different than breeding in the '70's?

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I researched each and every Dobe that I own and breed, I crossed map every dog back a full 10 generation back.
So you were able to get information for every dog you were breeding and breeding to for 10 generations behind them? Man, even when I first started out which was pretty close to the beginning of the breed in North America it was very difficult to do that and it's questionable exactly how valuable that kind of information is going back that far. I know a couple of Phd geneticists who say that beyond 5 or at most 6 generations (with the exception of factors that have genetic markers and can be tested for) most of the information doesn't really tell you with accuracy a whole lot. And I guess I'm not sure what "crossed map" means. Could you explain that one for me?

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When I go to shows today the Doberman just don't have the confirmation and structure that the Doberman from 10 to 15 years ago.
Could you be more specific about this? what exactly are you seeing that you think is worse in terms of conformation/structure than Dobes 10 to 15 years ago? Heads?, fronts?, angulation?, balance?, movement? length?, feet?--that sort of thing?

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You also do not see the Doberman winning in major shows like they did 10 to 15 years ago. I just see better structure and confirmation within the Working Class verse the Conformation show class of the Doberman today.
This is where I really wondered--I show in AKC and Canadian KC conformation and used to occasionally show in Mexican KC conformation. AKC definitely doesn't have a "Working Class" but I think UDC does. And talking about "major shows"? Like what--Westminster? Chicago?, Santa Barbara? Pasadena--is that what you mean? There was a time, and I was showing at the very end of it when the "benched" shows were sort of regarded as "major" shows but there aren't even really many benched shows today. Westminster and I think maybe Chicago has a benched show still but the last of the benched shows in the Pacific Northwest was Portland, Oregon and by the time they finally gave up that benched show the entries were tiny. Benching is sort of a thing of the past.

And just in general if you mean Dobermans going Best in Show? Dobermans still go BIS in respectable numbers and there really are very few breeds that have ALWAYS gone BIS in large numbers.

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Testing today has advanced, but Just in the time that I have started my search for a new baby, high ranking show breeders that I have been to are doing not paying attention to DNA testing, but they will tell you when you caught this, Oh well yes both the Sire and the Bitch are both carrier we have never had a problem and keep on breeding, When I go to show I see owner and breeder using Black shoe polish and covering up white on the chest of the Dobermans,
Even today there aren't all that many traits that can be tested for genetically in any given breed. So exactly what traits are these high ranking show breeders not paying attention to? vWD? Because there are factors for which there are no tests I think that sometimes we see breeders breeding pairs that might result in affected puppies--but sometimes there are factors that be more important--longevity being one.

As for the black shoe polish--I think most of them have graduated to either dye or to black waterproof marker to cover up those white strips on the chest--but there isn't a DNA test for spotting in a Dobe and I've been watching them do that since the first show I went to in 1958.

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Working Class breeder are doing DNA and Genetic test on there Dobes, I don't get a lot of my information from word of mouth or off the internet I follow the medical information from Top Vet Medical Facilities and teaching facilities in the USA. I just had, last week had a well know show breed could not even tell me what went to the development of Doberman, I am not say all show breeder are like this, and I have ran across others that are very knowledgeable, but I have walked away from there litters because I just did not like the Sire and Bitch, and most Show Breeder do not have both on site, witch is a big red flag me. It took me 5 years to find my last Dobe and I am not apposed to looking at Show Breeder because you just never know what I will find, I am just looking for the best Doberman for me, just because of my love for the breed, and I just don't want to live life without a Doberman in my life. .
I think you'd find that the show line breeders also do testing. DNA and genetic testing are the same thing--and there really STILL are not all that many things that have genetic tests.

I see nothing wrong with walking away from anyone's litter if you don't like the sire and dam but I would actually much prefer that a bitch owner didn't have both sire and dam on site--I want the bitches bred to the very best match and mostly you don't find them in the same back yard. Over the years most of my dogs have come from show breeders who may have bitches in a breeding program and a male who is standing at stud but is not the one they used on the dam of the litter my puppy came from. My old guy is out of an Oregon bitch and a New Jersey sire. One of my dogs in the past was from a California male and a South Carolina bitch. His predecessor was out of a Washington State bitch and a California male. When I see as many BYB's who have a stable of bitches all being bred to the same male and they are bragging about it because potential owners can come and see both parents "ON SITE"--that's a big red flag to me.

Anyway I got to wondering if you were talking about a "working" registry--I always sort of think of the UDC as a working registry and they do have Working Classes.

Good luck in your search for your next dog...
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post #177 of 201 (permalink) Old 04-28-2018, 06:06 PM
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Since it didn't appear that rtewell was going to answer any of my questions about what was so wrong with Dobermans today that was so much better 10 or 15 years ago I looked back through the archives to see if they might shed light.

For a very enlightening view of what rtewell is talking about and what seems to be wrong with todays Dobes, take a look at a thread started by rtewell, Newly Cropped Ears, started 9/7/2008. This thread turned out to not be entirely about ears and crops and posting and rtewell's view of the Doberman today is greatly influenced by the fact the preferred size for (him/her?) is 31 to 32 inches and the problem stems from the AKC's shrinking of required size over the years. There was also a comment (in 2008) that Dobermans 10-15 years ago were vastly superior to what was around then.

The entire thread got quite interesting and it made no difference what information was given in rebuttal to rtewell's view of size (and longevity) and since nothing seems to have changed much in rtewell's mind in the last nearly 10 years I'll stop trying to clarify anything--seems it would only be beating the proverbial dead horse.
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post #178 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-01-2018, 10:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dobebug View Post
Since it didn't appear that rtewell was going to answer any of my questions about what was so wrong with Dobermans today that was so much better 10 or 15 years ago I looked back through the archives to see if they might shed light.

For a very enlightening view of what rtewell is talking about and what seems to be wrong with todays Dobes, take a look at a thread started by rtewell, Newly Cropped Ears, started 9/7/2008. This thread turned out to not be entirely about ears and crops and posting and rtewell's view of the Doberman today is greatly influenced by the fact the preferred size for (him/her?) is 31 to 32 inches and the problem stems from the AKC's shrinking of required size over the years. There was also a comment (in 2008) that Dobermans 10-15 years ago were vastly superior to what was around then.

The entire thread got quite interesting and it made no difference what information was given in rebuttal to rtewell's view of size (and longevity) and since nothing seems to have changed much in rtewell's mind in the last nearly 10 years I'll stop trying to clarify anything--seems it would only be beating the proverbial dead horse.
We can try to fix stupid Bug, but unfortunately it seems to squeeze through the logic that gets thrown at it. Those of us who prefer a standard Doberman will never be able to satisfy those people who will always think that bigger = better..... sigh.
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post #179 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-01-2018, 11:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Fitzmar Dobermans View Post
We can try to fix stupid Bug, but unfortunately it seems to squeeze through the logic that gets thrown at it. Those of us who prefer a standard Doberman will never be able to satisfy those people who will always think that bigger = better..... sigh.
Oh man--ain't that just the truth! Ditto for that .....sigh.
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post #180 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-02-2018, 07:12 PM
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The conformation standard as far as size and general appearance is just fine and I would have to vehemently disagree with making the breed larger or taller. Do we want more cardio problems? That's how we get more cardio problems.

However, I think temperament is too weak in far too many modern NA Dobes and few seem to care. When breeders indiscriminately linebreed, because they don't understand how to apply it and think they're going to get a winning ghetto clone of a popular sire, well, even in severely inbred humans, temperament & sanity are usually the first noticeable things to go.

Anxious Dobes are just not correct. Breeders are failing their dogs and themselves when they desensitize & train to evaluations like the WAC, and take it multiple times until their dogs pass. They are failing their dogs and the breed (and scamming buyers) when they claim to have "working bloodlines" based on a sire who only a WAC, TT, ATT and the tracking & obedience phases of IPO. What does passing ALL the temperament evals in the world mean if the dog has weak nerves or whatever other mental issues and can't pass protection phase of the most basic level?

I'm sure I'm in a minority here, but I'm of the opinion that, if the ferocious 70s & 80s Dobes were on the hard side of stable temperament, they had a chance in IPO and doing the work that matches their reputation. I realize that there are a host of reasons that Dobes are seldom seen in real protection jobs anymore, but there's definitely a problem when DVG clubs either don't accept Dobes for training in their programs, or laugh them off the field because they've seen so many failures. The illusion of Dobermans as fierce protectors persists for the general public, but those who are serious about protection sports or training policing dogs have all but abandoned the breed. It's a major thing when someone titles a Dobe to an IPO1 degree in the USA, a Dobe achieving IPO3 is a once-in-a-blue-moon event.

It's really sad that Dobes have lost so much respect in working circles.
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post #181 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-29-2018, 10:51 PM
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I've just read this thread, and I find it fascinating.

I agree that responsible breeding is important, as is education of the public into how to buy a doberman from a responsible breeder.

The one irritating problem I've always noted with the horse breeds as well is that, if responsible breeders breed fewer and fewer dogs, then it leaves only the irresponsible breeders to fill the gaps. This will cause issues with breeds dying out, and/or deterioration of the quality of the breed, which as we've already noted, we don't want because BSL is terrible, and dobermans with poor temperaments are poor ambassadors for the breed.

I don't know how to solve it without good breeders being able to breed more. Which tends to disqualify them as breeders (and now my head hurts).

So, is there a way to encourage good breeders to breed more, or encouraging new breeders to breed, thereby both preserving the breed *and* allowing for a better "supply" of dobermans for the buying public?

If breeders have to sell at a loss, this will not work, so we have to find a way to keep it both ethical and at least break-even-able. I don't see another way for the breed to survive well.

Please note, I have zero interest in breeding, not because I don't love the breed, but rather because I've been a part of the birthing of goats & horses and it's just not for me. So I'm not saying this to defend any bad breeding practices, but rather to open a discussion about how we can change things for the better.
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post #182 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-30-2018, 06:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dobebug View Post
As for the black shoe polish--I think most of them have graduated to either dye or to black waterproof marker to cover up those white strips on the chest--but there isn't a DNA test for spotting in a Dobe and I've been watching them do that since the first show I went to in 1958.
There is now, it's the S Locus (White spotting, piebald or parti) testing/gene. And it is far more prevalent in our breed than people would like to admit. I know of a stud dog who has tested homozygous for it, who is by an Am/Can GCH sire from sensationally famous US and South American lines and a Can Ch dam out of very well known North and South American lines.
But I can't think of any reputable breeders that have actually started testing for it. I don't think they should, either, as the last thing this breed needs is yet more reasons to create a genetic bottleneck. Also, personally I think this should be struck from the standard as a fault, how do white hairs impede the original function of the doberman? I don't think it's linked to deafness or blindness in our breed, and thanks to DNA testing we now know it's not a sign of cross-breeding or 'impurity' (let's call a spade a spade), nor is it related to albinism. I suspect if we did test we'd realize it is extremely widespread and if that's the case, maybe it's just part of our breed, why penalize it? (I can understand it not being preferred, but for it to be a disqualifying fault... people already cover it up all the time anyway, this would just cut out the pretenses).

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Originally Posted by kaloric View Post
The conformation standard as far as size and general appearance is just fine and I would have to vehemently disagree with making the breed larger or taller. Do we want more cardio problems? That's how we get more cardio problems.

However, I think temperament is too weak in far too many modern NA Dobes and few seem to care. When breeders indiscriminately linebreed, because they don't understand how to apply it and think they're going to get a winning ghetto clone of a popular sire, well, even in severely inbred humans, temperament & sanity are usually the first noticeable things to go.

Anxious Dobes are just not correct. Breeders are failing their dogs and themselves when they desensitize & train to evaluations like the WAC, and take it multiple times until their dogs pass. They are failing their dogs and the breed (and scamming buyers) when they claim to have "working bloodlines" based on a sire who only a WAC, TT, ATT and the tracking & obedience phases of IPO. What does passing ALL the temperament evals in the world mean if the dog has weak nerves or whatever other mental issues and can't pass protection phase of the most basic level?

I'm sure I'm in a minority here, but I'm of the opinion that, if the ferocious 70s & 80s Dobes were on the hard side of stable temperament, they had a chance in IPO and doing the work that matches their reputation. I realize that there are a host of reasons that Dobes are seldom seen in real protection jobs anymore, but there's definitely a problem when DVG clubs either don't accept Dobes for training in their programs, or laugh them off the field because they've seen so many failures. The illusion of Dobermans as fierce protectors persists for the general public, but those who are serious about protection sports or training policing dogs have all but abandoned the breed. It's a major thing when someone titles a Dobe to an IPO1 degree in the USA, a Dobe achieving IPO3 is a once-in-a-blue-moon event.

It's really sad that Dobes have lost so much respect in working circles.
I whole heartedly agree. Especially the first part... during my time at the Ring Club, we were discussing the increasing trend in European show dobes being oversized... males advertised as 120lb and this from winning kennels... Trainer looked at me in shock, laughed and said that's not a dobermann, and it sure as hell ain't a working dog. He also said it's one of the reasons you see less and less GSDs in Ring as they're getting bigger too and there's a point at which a 120lb dog hurtling over a 2m palisade is going to seriously injure or strain itself... also won't have the ability and stamina to endure a RingIII test from start to finish.

I saw a comment on facebook the other day in one of the many doberman groups, from a self-professed show breeder actually saying she didn't want, nor was interested in a proper working temperament (we are talking about temperament here, not Drive) and I just about keeled over. She basically just admitted she doesn't like Dobermans... just dogs that look like them and that made me unbelievably sad. I almost asked her if she had any idea what a proper Dobe temperament was like (I'm thinking she had to have some misconceptions about what that entails. Aloof does not mean aggressive, suspicious doesn't mean unfriendly, alert and active doesn't mean anxious, and so on...)
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post #183 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-31-2018, 12:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Artemis View Post
But I can't think of any reputable breeders that have actually started testing for it. I don't think they should, either, as the last thing this breed needs is yet more reasons to create a genetic bottleneck. Also, personally I think this should be struck from the standard as a fault, how do white hairs impede the original function of the doberman? I don't think it's linked to deafness or blindness in our breed, and thanks to DNA testing we now know it's not a sign of cross-breeding or 'impurity' (let's call a spade a spade), nor is it related to albinism. I suspect if we did test we'd realize it is extremely widespread and if that's the case, maybe it's just part of our breed, why penalize it? (I can understand it not being preferred, but for it to be a disqualifying fault... people already cover it up all the time anyway, this would just cut out the pretenses).
I'm intrigued by your line of thought, I can't say I really questioned the white disqualifiers or gave them any thought. Excessive white markings definitely get excessive attention (and not just in Dobermans). The AQHA gets all over that, too, complete with imaginary lines that, if a white marking crosses, the horse can't be bred or is even disqualified from being registered. I'm pretty sure that has a lot to do with keeping color breeders from getting a foothold because the AQHA wants to focus on performance rather than flash, but also because they want to maintain a strong breed brand identity which consists of specific solid colors.

I'm guessing the rationale against the white markings in Dobes is also mostly to do with breed brand integrity, same as fuels the obsession with cropped ears and docked tails. Is it really that important?

Quote:
I saw a comment on facebook the other day in one of the many doberman groups, from a self-professed show breeder actually saying she didn't want, nor was interested in a proper working temperament (we are talking about temperament here, not Drive) and I just about keeled over. She basically just admitted she doesn't like Dobermans... just dogs that look like them and that made me unbelievably sad. I almost asked her if she had any idea what a proper Dobe temperament was like (I'm thinking she had to have some misconceptions about what that entails. Aloof does not mean aggressive, suspicious doesn't mean unfriendly, alert and active doesn't mean anxious, and so on...)
I suspect that a lot of show breeders don't understand and don't really care about evaluating temperament. As long as the dog doesn't piss itself from anxiety in the show ring or bite the judge, putting effort into concerning themselves about temperament does not further their goals.

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Originally Posted by oberonandbella View Post
The one irritating problem I've always noted with the horse breeds as well is that, if responsible breeders breed fewer and fewer dogs, then it leaves only the irresponsible breeders to fill the gaps. This will cause issues with breeds dying out, and/or deterioration of the quality of the breed, which as we've already noted, we don't want because BSL is terrible, and dobermans with poor temperaments are poor ambassadors for the breed.

I don't know how to solve it without good breeders being able to breed more. Which tends to disqualify them as breeders (and now my head hurts).

So, is there a way to encourage good breeders to breed more, or encouraging new breeders to breed, thereby both preserving the breed *and* allowing for a better "supply" of dobermans for the buying public?
I trimmed your quote down a bit here, but it's an excellent inquiry.

So, there are a few things going on in this area that I've noticed.

First, the more effort put into developing & finishing a dog with titles takes a lot of resources, not the least of which is time, and a lot of folks don't consider breeding until they reach the goal. That loss of time can utterly ruin a bitch's chances of producing a litter, even if she is good quality.

Second, breeders who breed "too often" are usually savaged by other breeders and communities in the dog fancy, such as this forum, because scarcity seems to be viewed as some measure of quality. Artificial scarcity just means if the average person wants to get a Dobe, they'll either be ignored outright or stuck on waiting lists for years for a "quality" Dobe, or they can just go patronize the lower-end breeders.

Third, up-and-coming breeders get savaged by other breeders and communities unless they play a particular game by apprenticing for a respected show breeder. Maybe that's a good idea for some who do need the guidance, but it isn't necessary, and being nasty towards those folks means that, if they even stay with the breed, they won't make the mistake of asking for guidance again.

Fourth, popular sires are already influential enough, and most of the "good breeders" you're referring to don't stray far from the extremely popular bloodlines.

Fifth, there's a strong stigma attached to losing complete control over one's prized bloodline, such that breeders are savaged by other breeders if they allow their bloodline to travel outside of the clique.

Sixth, more breedings by fewer breeders, whether they're "BYBs" or "Reputables", aren't going to help the situation. Fewer, thoughtful breedings across a much larger population is what will ultimately improve health, temperament, and longevity. To hear your typical "Reputable" breeder talk, only one or two percent of dogs are worthy of being bred. The funny thing about eugenics is that it takes something that sounds good in theory, but whenever it's implemented strictly, it ALWAYS results in an unmitigated disaster due to the genetic bottleneck because the proponents always take it way too far. It doesn't matter if this principle is applied within the aristocracy, some concept of a "master race", or animals, sustained genetic bottlenecks invariably achieve the opposite of the intended effect.

Further food for thought: The typical "BYB" is probably actually helping aimless diversity in the breed moreso than "Reputable" breeders. I say "aimless", because genetic diversity alone isn't inherent quality, but it can be a measure of genetic resilience with a dramatically reduced chance of painting oneself into a corner of disease and misery.
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post #184 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-31-2018, 01:52 AM
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Quote:
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I'm intrigued by your line of thought, I can't say I really questioned the white disqualifiers or gave them any thought. Excessive white markings definitely get excessive attention (and not just in Dobermans). The AQHA gets all over that, too, complete with imaginary lines that, if a white marking crosses, the horse can't be bred or is even disqualified from being registered. I'm pretty sure that has a lot to do with keeping color breeders from getting a foothold because the AQHA wants to focus on performance rather than flash, but also because they want to maintain a strong breed brand identity which consists of specific solid colors.

I'm guessing the rationale against the white markings in Dobes is also mostly to do with breed brand integrity, same as fuels the obsession with cropped ears and docked tails. Is it really that important?
I guess my line of thinking is multifold: firstly, before our understanding of modern genetics, it was thought, be it in horses, or dogs that piebalds or overly visible white markings were a sign of impurity in many breeds. In fact if I recall correctly the word piebald itself used to mean mongrel. This is also a problem faced by the English Mastiff, and I think the (English) Kennel Club refuses to register piebalds for this reason even though Piebalds can be born from solid coloured parents. There was an English breeder trying to change this a few years back. (And since you referenced AQHA I'm sure you'll remember that this was also one of the reasons Cremellos weren't allowed to be registered/shown at breed shows until colour genetics became a thing that was understood and we realized Cremellos were double dilutes, not some sort of expansive white). So, now we know that white in the case of S Locus in our dogs has nothing to do with a marred pedigree. The animal is purebred, we know this, this gets rid of the first objection.

The second... show breeders (of any breed) spend their time beating their drum and telling to whoever wants to listen that conformation is important because conformation determines a dog's original function, and that form should follow function. However what we are seeing with many breeds are now 'beautiful' dogs who can't do what they were supposed to have been bred for. The Doberman Pinscher in his North and South American form has mostly escaped thus far the indignity of physically being incapable of doing its job (but I know one French working line breeder who will happily tell you what she thinks of modern Euro Showlines and their functionality...) but meanwhile we've watered down temperament and drive which isn't that much better. And still certain show ring trends and fashions that may be straying from the standard can be seen this side of the pond with some of the more worrying continental trends seeming to worm their way here. But that's another matter entirely. If the goal of showing is to prove an animal to be breed worthy and therefore functional why does an arbitrary trait, which is confirmed to have existed in the breed, and been covered up since the 50s (which means plenty of dogs with this trait have been pinned, won and finished...) continue to be stigmatized when it has no bearing on the dog's function. One can argue, I suppose that docked/undocked or cropped/undocked might have an impact on the functionality (but even so I'm not sure 'brand integrity' applies... someone just finished an uncropped undocked dobe as a canadian champion recently)... but colour? We also now know for sure the S Locus has nothing to do with Albinism, so it's not like it has a negative impact on health, unless someone runs a study about Dobes with 'disallowed white' and finding they're more frail or less healthy than dobes without it's odd to just straight up disqualify it.

I just find it strange when I've had multiple people, including Dobe and non-Dobe dog fanciers tell me I should just dye my bitch's white/cover it up and show her because she's "gorgeously structured". It used to disturb me and I'd say "I don't feel comfortable cheating" to which they'd respond "is it cheating if everyone does it?" or "it's not cheating it's just part of grooming the dog for the show" so I guess my last line of thinking is... if everyone does it and pretends it doesn't exist, wouldn't it just be better to acknowledge it is there in our breed and people have bred dogs with white, shown dogs with white (hiding it), continued to breed dogs that have produced white, while pretending it isn't there. It would simply remove the dishonesty about it. Even with "legal" white, we already treat it as not being preferred, and all things equal a dog without white will be placed ahead of a dog with one... I don't see why that couldn't extend to all white markings, instead of creating an imaginary cut off to what's disqualifying vs what's acceptable. You're still giving preference to the aesthetic of the unmarred red or black and tan, without ruling otherwise soundly structured dogs from being breed-worthy material.

I do understand part of this breed's standard goes beyond function, aesthetics and beauty have always been part of it. But I don't think it serves the breed to rule out otherwise healthy, quality, well-bred individuals from the gene pool because they might have too much white. We can't really afford it, if we want to save what precious little genetic diversity we have.

*readjusts tinhat*
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post #185 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-31-2018, 02:35 AM
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On the note of genetic diversity, breeding more/breeding less... the cardigan breeder (Joanna Kimball I believe?) who ran ruffly speaking made an interesting post on the matter.
I think it was this one. "A Football Field of Dogs"
(ha and in fact re-reading it now she touches upon white and markings for her breed)
Here was a followup as well.
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post #186 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-31-2018, 09:01 AM
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First, the more effort put into developing & finishing a dog with titles takes a lot of resources, not the least of which is time, and a lot of folks don't consider breeding until they reach the goal. That loss of time can utterly ruin a bitch's chances of producing a litter, even if she is good quality.
This is an example of where I feel like we may or may not be missing a boat. In the horse world, dams aren't necessarily "required" to be titled (and I use that in quotes because I know there's no literal requirement) to be considered worthy of breeding. There are inspections, which I think is a wise way to do it - it's not the whole way to a performance record. I'd assume the WAE/WAC would be a good measure for Dobermans (or any other dog, modified for the breed of course).

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Second, breeders who breed "too often" are usually savaged by other breeders and communities in the dog fancy, such as this forum, because scarcity seems to be viewed as some measure of quality. Artificial scarcity just means if the average person wants to get a Dobe, they'll either be ignored outright or stuck on waiting lists for years for a "quality" Dobe, or they can just go patronize the lower-end breeders.
Definitely an issue. I've seen this more than once. Keep in mind, rescue isn't always an option if someone doesn't have experience with dobermans or a tall fence. Many rescues will not allow you to have a doberman until you've had a doberman. I found this to be problematic when looking for my first. They may have reduced the stringency in recent years.

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Third, up-and-coming breeders get savaged by other breeders and communities unless they play a particular game by apprenticing for a respected show breeder. Maybe that's a good idea for some who do need the guidance, but it isn't necessary, and being nasty towards those folks means that, if they even stay with the breed, they won't make the mistake of asking for guidance again.
This is upsetting and will end up killing the breed.

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Fourth, popular sires are already influential enough, and most of the "good breeders" you're referring to don't stray far from the extremely popular bloodlines.

Fifth, there's a strong stigma attached to losing complete control over one's prized bloodline, such that breeders are savaged by other breeders if they allow their bloodline to travel outside of the clique.

Sixth, more breedings by fewer breeders, whether they're "BYBs" or "Reputables", aren't going to help the situation. Fewer, thoughtful breedings across a much larger population is what will ultimately improve health, temperament, and longevity. To hear your typical "Reputable" breeder talk, only one or two percent of dogs are worthy of being bred. The funny thing about eugenics is that it takes something that sounds good in theory, but whenever it's implemented strictly, it ALWAYS results in an unmitigated disaster due to the genetic bottleneck because the proponents always take it way too far. It doesn't matter if this principle is applied within the aristocracy, some concept of a "master race", or animals, sustained genetic bottlenecks invariably achieve the opposite of the intended effect.

Further food for thought: The typical "BYB" is probably actually helping aimless diversity in the breed moreso than "Reputable" breeders. I say "aimless", because genetic diversity alone isn't inherent quality, but it can be a measure of genetic resilience with a dramatically reduced chance of painting oneself into a corner of disease and misery.
This, and the two articles that Artemis linked, make total sense.

Ok, so if BYB actually provide a service (if aimless), perhaps then the aim should be to help the BYB learn about the dogs themselves, and what constitutes a quality animal. So, instead of condemning them, as we are wont to do, perhaps we should provide more educational resources. I'm just trying to come up with solutions. I think it's irrational for us to say that the BYB doesn't care about their dogs. The general BYB just isn't well educated enough to know what to breed and what not to breed. Millers are a different problem, generally related to care.

Very thought-provoking in general.
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post #187 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-31-2018, 09:15 AM
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The other thing we do in the horse world (and this just occurred to me) is that we do not generally speaking deselect a horse because of a single fault. Have a mare with a long back? Breed to a shorter backed animal. Have a mare with an ugly head? Breed to pretty heads etc. etc. This article is an example of the guidance that people are given: https://thehorse.com/132564/breeding...ecting-a-sire/

Obviously, it's a different world, and a horse is going to have one foal and not 5+ per breeding, but it sure is curious.

And then many of the equine breeds allow outside blood in, from the quarter horses allowing TB blood in, to the warmblood inspections which are purely about type.

We treat dogs very differently, and I'm not entirely sure why.
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We treat dogs very differently, and I'm not entirely sure why.
Because they're different species, and because of tradition with registries, clubs, breeds, etc.

In the horse world, are there very specific standards laid out for each type of horse like we have in the dog world?

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post #189 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-31-2018, 10:21 AM
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Because they're different species, and because of tradition with registries, clubs, breeds, etc.

In the horse world, are there very specific standards laid out for each type of horse like we have in the dog world?
Quite specific, yes. And generally speaking, those do not end up well, humans tend to do a very poor job of ensuring function as well as form. Take a look at the AQHA or Arabian Halter horses to understand what is happening there (they aren't the only examples, but two pretty egregious ones). The AQHA halter horse is the primary reason that HYPP entered the breed and was so difficult to extinguish that halter breeders will still breed N/H for the double-muscling that can come with it. Most halter horses are never ridden, and aren't designed to be.

They are completely different than the HUS horses, which are IMO, AQHA in name only. Long history behind that. But breeders don't generally cross Halter horses and HUS horses, any more than you would cross a Doberman to a Beagle. They are, for all intents and purposes, completely separate breeds with completely separate bloodlines and types.

Other breeds have completely closed studbooks, like Thoroughbreds, which also have the requirement of live cover. And their genetic diversity and conformational issues are problematic as well.

I don't agree that they have very different traditions & clubs, the purposes are quite similar. Most of my equine friends are quite involved in the dog world as well. The idea is the same. Conformation, "type", ability, and long term soundness are quite important. I mean, I suppose temperament and rideability are a bit more important in the horse world since a 1200lb animal can literally kill you if it decides it doesn't want to play anymore, but I'd argue that is important in dogs as well.

Keep in mind, I'm not arguing for an open studbook. Please don't get me wrong. I am concerned about the lack of genetic diversity in the breed, and increasingly anxious about the future of the breed as a whole.
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post #190 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-31-2018, 01:47 PM
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I do understand part of this breed's standard goes beyond function, aesthetics and beauty have always been part of it. But I don't think it serves the breed to rule out otherwise healthy, quality, well-bred individuals from the gene pool because they might have too much white. We can't really afford it, if we want to save what precious little genetic diversity we have.

*readjusts tinhat*
That was a great read, thanks for condensing the historical info you've gathered. It really does make historical sense as to why white markings were considered faults, but you're spot-on that we no longer need to use phenotypes to guess at genotypes, and if folks dipping into mixed breeding was the justification for the disqualifications, then the justification for such harsh treatment of white markings can be attenuated into just being a standard fault like a missing premolar, maybe after a genetic test if there's concern.
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post #191 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-31-2018, 02:27 PM
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On the note of genetic diversity, breeding more/breeding less... the cardigan breeder (Joanna Kimball I believe?) who ran ruffly speaking made an interesting post on the matter.
I think it was this one. "A Football Field of Dogs"
(ha and in fact re-reading it now she touches upon white and markings for her breed)
Here was a followup as well.
I've seen folks linking a few of those Ruffly Speaking articles, I really should read them all. She explains the concepts very well and her rationale is a breath of fresh air. It also helps that she isn't speaking from the sidelines like I've been doing, that she's in the thick of things as a breeder who has a grasp of population biology and genetics, which precious few seem to understand in that depth.
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post #192 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-31-2018, 02:46 PM
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I thought it funny that an issue was made that most show breeders don't have sire and dame on sight. I also have German Shepherds from Germany. Guess what most working line Shepherd breeders also don't have both sire and dame on site. If you are truly trying to breed to better your breed what are the chances that the best possible mating is always on your property for every dame you have? As well as making comments about bottle necks in the breeding. Guess what you can't have it both ways.
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post #193 of 201 (permalink) Old 05-31-2018, 05:22 PM
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This is an example of where I feel like we may or may not be missing a boat. In the horse world, dams aren't necessarily "required" to be titled (and I use that in quotes because I know there's no literal requirement) to be considered worthy of breeding. There are inspections, which I think is a wise way to do it - it's not the whole way to a performance record. I'd assume the WAE/WAC would be a good measure for Dobermans (or any other dog, modified for the breed of course).
The WAE/WAC/ATT/TT/etc. are basically useless the way folks treat them, training to the specific challenges or taking them over and over again until their animals barely skate through a passing score. The problem with these things is that they're far from rigorous and a lot of breeders aren't using them to identify potential faults in their stock, but more as a "look at me, I'm REPUTABLE" test that they may feel an obligation to pass to prove their stock is worthy.

I disagree with the perceived need for titling outright. The goal of breeders should be to understand what the structure of their animals should be, have the ability to objectively evaluate their stock, and check their pride & solicit an objective opinion if they're not certain about their ability to do both of those things competently. Going before judges at a couple of conformation shows should be plenty adequate, even in the realm of certified, 3rd-party opinions that an animal conforms to the standard. When folks continue with a competitive attitude, it suddenly becomes extremely subjective as to which animals (who conform to the standard) are the best at conforming to the standard, and that's where the really stupid things start happening.

Working titles are pretty much a pass/fail, as they should be.

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Ok, so if BYB actually provide a service (if aimless), perhaps then the aim should be to help the BYB learn about the dogs themselves, and what constitutes a quality animal. So, instead of condemning them, as we are wont to do, perhaps we should provide more educational resources. I'm just trying to come up with solutions. I think it's irrational for us to say that the BYB doesn't care about their dogs. The general BYB just isn't well educated enough to know what to breed and what not to breed. Millers are a different problem, generally related to care.

Very thought-provoking in general.
As I said in the latest longevity thread, I really don't like pejorative or complimentary labels which are inherently loaded with value judgements such as "BYB" or "Reputable". They're too subjective, conjure mental images, and don't really describe what is right or wrong with what a breeder is doing.

Don't get me wrong, though, if we're talking about casual breeders or those looking to make a quick buck, there can be a whole lot they're doing wrong, which has potential to lead to heartache. Most do pretty well by the breed when they have a good head on their shoulders, aren't looking for a quick buck, and treat their animals as members of the family. Maybe they don't know about health testing, but a little education probably would help them at least identify the most important things to test for, when in the animal's lifecycle the tests are most meaningful, and what to do with the information the tests provide.

Those who put in a lot of effort to title and do health testing are definitely taking the endeavor more seriously, but simply calling everyone in that group "reputable" doesn't really help matters, when they're the source of the most damaging breeding practices of incestuous pairings (producing animals with elevated COI) and overuse of popular sires (PSS) that just choke the life out of the gene pool. Of course they should go crazy with health testing, because even if one particular breeder doesn't go crazy with the linebreeding, the lines they're using usually have history of it.

This is the main difference I've had difficulty adjusting to between the equestrian community and the dog fancy. It's my perception that most horse breeders have more of a self-reliant competence when it comes to matters relating to livestock care & animal husbandry.

The barrier to entry is much higher to get involved in the equestrian community, which probably weeds-out many of the folks who are only looking for a quick buck because nothing involving horses is particularly easy to profit from. It also helps that it's often a part of that (semi-) rural agriculture lifestyle. There's peer support and education from childhood through organizations like 4-H, Granges, Co-ops, County Fair participation, even just osmosis by browsing the Nasco catalog or wandering through the local farm & ranch store and chatting with knowledgeable folks there.

There's probably just not as much need for 3rd-party validation through titling, they're generally supportive of each other, and there generally just isn't widespread misuse of risky breeding practices, with the exception of halter showing and racing segments, and color breeds. It's just generally not as much of a frustrating minefield of maladies.
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post #194 of 201 (permalink) Old 06-01-2018, 05:44 PM
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I think also one major difference between dogs and horses is that most people searching for a dog, are looking for a specific breed as a companion first and foremost, and THEN they'll look at what they can do with said dog. Of course some people will also want to show confo (but you can show confo with almost any breed so generally speaking you start out by picking a breed) unless they're already experienced with being involved in an activity like agility, working sports, hunting etc. where the main concern will be finding a suitable individual so breed consideration might be secondary (but even then people generally select a breed in their mind that they'd like for said activity).

Meanwhile most people looking to buy a horse are looking at a horse for a specific purpose, and so breed consideration plummets to the bottom of the list for most people, unless they've got a prejudice towards certain breed especially with regards to x activity. Most horses for sale on the market aren't currently being sold by their original breeder, and you do not need to have a papered or registered horse to show, so there's less interest in whether such and such horse is X breed or purebred. I'd say the people who love specific horse breeds and would only own a horse of that breed, or want to show on breed circuits are in the minority or either looking at highly specialised breeds like gaited breeds. Halter/in-hand (i.e. 'conformation') showing is a niche segment, because work/functionality is the primary concern with horses. Very few people will acquire a horse they can't ride or drive. The opposite is true in dogs where show titles are the gold standard and working lines have for most breeds become a niche segment. And I've seen people say that obedience titles, agility titles, hunt trial titles, herding titles etc. don't make a dog breed-worthy they're seen as a bonus, which is odd to me because if a dog can title in all those things and remain sound... aren't they proving their functionality? If confo is meant to prove functionality why does it trump actual performance titles in determining whether a dog should or shouldn't breed?

Another thing is in part because they live longer and in part because they're put to work, horses change hands a lot more frequently than dogs. Some people might include buy-back clauses/first refusal in their sales contracts but generally speaking it's fairly rare that a breeder will expect you to return the horse back to them, or demand you let them vet so they could choose the horse's next home. There's a bit more of a "you own him, he's your problem now" mentality in horses.
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post #195 of 201 (permalink) Old 06-02-2018, 04:44 PM
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I think also one major difference between dogs and horses is that most people searching for a dog, are looking for a specific breed as a companion first and foremost, and THEN they'll look at what they can do with said dog. Of course some people will also want to show confo (but you can show confo with almost any breed so generally speaking you start out by picking a breed) unless they're already experienced with being involved in an activity like agility, working sports, hunting etc. where the main concern will be finding a suitable individual so breed consideration might be secondary (but even then people generally select a breed in their mind that they'd like for said activity).


Meanwhile most people looking to buy a horse are looking at a horse for a specific purpose, and so breed consideration plummets to the bottom of the list for most people, unless they've got a prejudice towards certain breed especially with regards to x activity. Most horses for sale on the market aren't currently being sold by their original breeder, and you do not need to have a papered or registered horse to show, so there's less interest in whether such and such horse is X breed or purebred. I'd say the people who love specific horse breeds and would only own a horse of that breed, or want to show on breed circuits are in the minority or either looking at highly specialised breeds like gaited breeds. Halter/in-hand (i.e. 'conformation') showing is a niche segment, because work/functionality is the primary concern with horses.
I'd debate this. Yes, for many sport horse disciplines, but quarter horse people are quarter horse people. Paint people are paint people. TWH people are TWH people. Morgan people are Morgan people. There's a very real contingent of breed people. Not as much of a niche as you'd expect. And the number of QH people is HUGE. Over 250k active human memberships in 2017. They are probably the most analogous as they typically participate solely in breed shows. Those members registered 2.5 million Quarter Horses. Of those, approximately 1/8th are halter only, which is over 300k horses bred ONLY for halter. These horses are never ridden (nor, truthfully, should they ever be).

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Another thing is in part because they live longer and in part because they're put to work, horses change hands a lot more frequently than dogs. Some people might include buy-back clauses/first refusal in their sales contracts but generally speaking it's fairly rare that a breeder will expect you to return the horse back to them, or demand you let them vet so they could choose the horse's next home. There's a bit more of a "you own him, he's your problem now" mentality in horses.
Horses do change hands a bit more than dogs, but I think it's because of the view of them as "livestock" rather than the living longer bit. The higher end horse breeders do vet homes, but you're right, they are a bit more available.

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The barrier to entry is much higher to get involved in the equestrian community, which probably weeds-out many of the folks who are only looking for a quick buck because nothing involving horses is particularly easy to profit from. It also helps that it's often a part of that (semi-) rural agriculture lifestyle. There's peer support and education from childhood through organizations like 4-H, Granges, Co-ops, County Fair participation, even just osmosis by browsing the Nasco catalog or wandering through the local farm & ranch store and chatting with knowledgeable folks there.
Sadly, it's not as high as you would believe. Thousands and thousands of horses go to slaughter each year, mainly from breeders that breed crappy stock. I know people who breed on less than an acre of land with a $50 horse that they got at auction. They somehow end up with reasonably healthy foals, which is crazy.

To me though, these do not indicate enough reasons that the breeding is "different". Our emotions seem to be what make it different, not really the mechanics. Raising an animal for a conformational & temperament standard is very similar.

I'm sorry that the WAC isn't doing it's job. That seems like a really nice way of figuring it out, like the warmblood inspections. And I totally get the dislike of "titles" like BYB. It's a funny pickle that we find ourselves in for sure.
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post #196 of 201 (permalink) Old 06-03-2018, 01:04 AM
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I thought it funny that an issue was made that most show breeders don't have sire and dame on sight. I also have German Shepherds from Germany. Guess what most working line Shepherd breeders also don't have both sire and dame on site. If you are truly trying to breed to better your breed what are the chances that the best possible mating is always on your property for every dame you have? As well as making comments about bottle necks in the breeding. Guess what you can't have it both ways.
I'm having a little difficulty parsing what you're saying. I can't say I've heard of anyone making a fuss that show breeders don't have sire & dam on site. If anything, it's the opposite, because "oh, if both parents are on site, you're dealing with a BYB!" is one of the BYB Red Flag line items.

It is absolutely a cause to dig deeper into breeding practices if both parents are onsite. Some low-end breeders choose pairings based solely on convenience and price, and they may have closely related animals of opposite genders and can avoid having to pay a stud fee if they keep pairings in-house. That's obviously not a solid argument in favor of a particular pairing since it doesn't consider quality.

If the parents are onsite, but they're nearest common ancestor goes back a number of generations, I can't say I have a huge amount of concern. In fact, my primary concern would be that, since the breeder has locked-in the pairing, they're more likely to stick with it even if there are warning signs. When a breeder shops for outside bloodlines, it's certainly much easier to try different pairings for different results, but it's far from unusual for a breeder to repeat a pairing which works.

"Best possible pairing" is highly subjective, but I get what you're saying there-- if one limits one's choices by breeding in-house, there is a strong chance that there are better choices out there.
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post #197 of 201 (permalink) Old 06-03-2018, 01:15 PM
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Originally Posted by rtewell View Post
Dobebug I liked and enjoyed reading you reply, and I am really glad that you have had good luck with a show conformation breeders, My Dobes of the 70's and that I breed and owned had much better structure, and confirmation than the Doberman of today and had life of 13 to 16 year of age. With that being said breeding today is much different, I researched each and every Dobe that I own and breed, I crossed map every dog back a full 10 generation back. When I go to shows today the Doberman just don't have the confirmation and structure that the Doberman from 10 to 15 years ago. You also do not see the Doberman winning in major shows like they did 10 to 15 years ago. I just see better structure and confirmation within the Working Class verse the Conformation show class of the Doberman today. Testing today has advanced, but Just in the time that I have started my search for a new baby, high ranking show breeders that I have been to are doing not paying attention to DNA testing, but they will tell you when you caught this, Oh well yes both the Sire and the Bitch are both carrier we have never had a problem and keep on breeding, When I go to show I see owner and breeder using Black shoe polish and covering up white on the chest of the Dobermans, Working Class breeder are doing DNA and Genetic test on there Dobes, I don't get a lot of my information from word of mouth or off the internet I follow the medical information from Top Vet Medical Facilities and teaching facilities in the USA. I just had, last week had a well know show breed could not even tell me what went to the development of Doberman, I am not say all show breeder are like this, and I have ran across others that are very knowledgeable, but I have walked away from there litters because I just did not like the Sire and Bitch, and most Show Breeder do not have both on site, witch is a big red flag me. It took me 5 years to find my last Dobe and I am not apposed to looking at Show Breeder because you just never know what I will find, I am just looking for the best Doberman for me, just because of my love for the breed, and I just don't want to live life without a Doberman in my life. .
My statements were made off from this and dobebugs reply to this individual
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post #198 of 201 (permalink) Old 06-03-2018, 07:44 PM
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Originally Posted by oberonandbella View Post
I'd debate this. Yes, for many sport horse disciplines, but quarter horse people are quarter horse people. Paint people are paint people. TWH people are TWH people. Morgan people are Morgan people. There's a very real contingent of breed people. Not as much of a niche as you'd expect. And the number of QH people is HUGE. Over 250k active human memberships in 2017. They are probably the most analogous as they typically participate solely in breed shows. Those members registered 2.5 million Quarter Horses. Of those, approximately 1/8th are halter only, which is over 300k horses bred ONLY for halter. These horses are never ridden (nor, truthfully, should they ever be).
I did specify in my post "unless they're looking at a specialised breed like a gaited breed". And I did say that breed people are the minority, not that they're a tiny minority. I know one (1) person who shows AQHA and she is an AQHA breeder. Quarter Horses are pretty common where I'm from (TBs, QHs/APHA, Appendixes, WBs and to a lesser extent, Canadians and grade horses are the most common breed here), but I've only ever actually met one of them that showed exclusively in AQHA. I think there's a tiny bit more in other regions of the province where the AQHA circuit is more widespread, but even amongst the horse people I know stateside and Ontario, 'breed people' are and tend to remain the minority, in terms of sheer numbers. I do not think registration numbers can paint an accurate picture because you don't necessarily need membership at every level if you're just an ordinary equestrian showing at the local level.

I'm an Arabian aficionado through and through, but I know if I ever got one I would probably not show at breed shows, and in fact if I ever got into the life situation and financial situation to own a horse I know the chances of me actually owning an Arabian would be next to nil, by virtue of my geographical location. I'd probably end up with an OTTB or grade thoroughbred.
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post #199 of 201 (permalink) Old 06-04-2018, 04:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Artemis View Post

I'm an Arabian aficionado through and through, but I know if I ever got one I would probably not show at breed shows, and in fact if I ever got into the life situation and financial situation to own a horse I know the chances of me actually owning an Arabian would be next to nil, by virtue of my geographical location. I'd probably end up with an OTTB or grade thoroughbred.
Me too! Love my Arabs and I have a half Friesian who thinks she's an Arabian! If you find yourself with an Arabian, I suggest you try a breed show. I love being around so many Arabians and like minded people. The QH people around me can be kinda snooty, not all but there are always some around. I'm hoping to get my gelding ready for the Native Costume class and sidesaddle class next spring!
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post #200 of 201 (permalink) Old 06-11-2018, 08:57 AM
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I did say that breed people are the minority, not that they're a tiny minority. I know one (1) person who shows AQHA and she is an AQHA breeder.
I suspect this might be a national difference. I’m in the US, and we have a ton of solely AQHA show folks.

I like Arabs too (not to hijack too much). I own a QH, a saddlebred and an Arab My chosen discipline is dressage, but I enjoy the “non traditional” breeds. My saddlebred is a super talented dressage horse but very typey from a saddlebred perspective.

Anyway - I can see your perspective - different equine areas are very...different.
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