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Old 06-22-2009, 08:27 PM   #1 (permalink)
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why health test?

Dogs were more healthy in general years ago,health testing was not a common practice years ago,dogs were selected for performance and a proper structure that allows the dog to function i.e[form follows function],the apbt was known as the bullet proof dog as it was not as susceptible to illness as other breeds and it could take massive punishment and still live through it.
Today dogs are generally less healthy due to breeding for everything under the sun except there original purpose,dogs are selected for freakish aesthetic and gross mutations,as well dogs are more commonly health tested and i can see why,since dogs are bred for the wrong reasons it's more important to test for the mutations and illnesses that are related to these issues.
But when selecting for working type properly is health testing really that important,and if you believe yes then why were dogs healthier when it wasn't done,some breeds known as land races are bred due to the survival of the fittest law of nature that is more accurate than health testing in a lab,so in concluding why health test when you select for form and function?
debate.
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Old 06-22-2009, 09:50 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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This is a great debate! I do feel the dogs of the past were healthier because if they had health issues they did not enter the gene pool. Today many breeders identify the faults in the dogs and breed to other dogs that can make up for that fault. In the past they just were not allowed to breed. By doing this we have created the need to health test. Now I think today you see it with show lines, some of the gamebred lines have kept the same breeding practices of the past.

Now the problem gamebred dogs have is many are being bred just off a pedigree instead of looking at the dog as a whole. The issue with that is the same as the show lines, you get undesired traits passed on. Like flat lizard feet for an example.

I think in todays world the way many dogs are bred that health testing is a good idea. I have a few dogs that have hips that are not good on X-rays but you would never know because I keep them in great shape. If I was breeding those dogs based just on performance I would never know they had a problem. Now that I have had hips done I would not want to breed those dogs. So I think it is important today because the dogs of the past are just that, the past. I miss the good old days, lol
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Old 06-22-2009, 10:03 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Where dog really healthier in the past, or do we now have better technology that allows us to identify more problems?
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Old 06-22-2009, 10:15 PM   #4 (permalink)
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What if the dog with hip issues that do not even show was a better working specimen?
If it's a minor fault i personally would select the dog that was of better working type despite minor flaws[that is if i had a kennel,which i dont and never will].When selecting for performance from healthy individuals in my opinion health testing is of little importance and major issues would be evident early on,these dogs would be obvious culls.
I do see people being flamed for not health testing or being called back yard breeders,but what if these people are producing better working stock than the breeder who does health test,do you sacrifice temperament[a sharp working drive ]for perfect hips?
In a perfect world you'd select for the overall dog,i know,but if you want to breed this dog[apbt] to it's original standard or as close to possible to it's original job[and yes dogs are still being fought,game testing still goes on]whats more important perfect hips or sharp working temperament?
I mean some people will select a dog with perfect ofa score and a mild demeanor over a hard nosed bulldog with a coat that is a minor fault or a slight under bite or a dog that is just a bit to tall,i personally would take the working dog with a slight flaw than the show dog with a am staff temperament[stereotyping,some staffs are as hard nosed as many game dogs,some].Anyways a slight flaw gives the dog character,some legendary dogs of this breed were quite ugly in the eyes of the confirmation crowd,take plumbers alligator,a large dog,even the plumbers didn't have much faith that a dog so big,so ugly could be a winner,dog turned out to be a legend,also a dog many people caught up in breeding dogs purely to standard may of culled.
good posting by the way performance kennels!
I short,i can't find anything wrong with health testing,but I'm not gonna cry if a dog is not and is from performance bred stock,good dogs are were you find them health tested or not,I would guess that the majority of the well known working dogs of this breed were not out of health tested stock.
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Old 06-22-2009, 10:19 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by smokey_joe View Post
Where dog really healthier in the past, or do we now have better technology that allows us to identify more problems?
Dogs are less healthy now due to breeding for the wrong reasons,in other words breeding for other things rather than form and function,the American bully is a perfect example as well as the am staff and its tight gene pool and the ukc pitterstaff,but of course even greater examples exist in other breeds.
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Old 06-22-2009, 10:33 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Well, the gene pool for humans is getting tighter also... there are alot more people out there without common sense and severe health issues that are still breeding... what's our cop out? We should health test too!
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Old 06-22-2009, 10:34 PM   #7 (permalink)
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With that last statement, I think since our common sense is getting lower so is our standard of dogs and what exactly to breed for is getting just as substandard as the people we choose to associate with.
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Old 06-22-2009, 10:43 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
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What if the dog with hip issues that do not even show was a better working specimen?
If it's a minor fault i personally would select the dog that was of better working type despite minor flaws[that is if i had a kennel,which i dont and never will].When selecting for performance from healthy individuals in my opinion health testing is of little importance and major issues would be evident early on,these dogs would be obvious culls.
.
This is where the show lines went bad IMO. I do not consider hips a minor fault but a major fault. After a while those bad hips will haunt you you down the road.
I agree with looking at the overall dog which is why some great performance dogs may not be the best looking.

You have to think of several generations down the line. I do health test like hearts and hips because I think it is important.
I would NEVER breed a great performance dog if the temperament was not sound. Why try to make excuses for a bad temperament? what is wrong with some people! lol
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Old 06-22-2009, 10:49 PM   #9 (permalink)
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This is where the show lines went bad IMO. I do not consider hips a minor fault but a major fault. After a while those bad hips will haunt you you down the road.
I agree with looking at the overall dog which is why some great performance dogs may not be the best looking.

You have to think of several generations down the line. I do health test like hearts and hips because I think it is important.
I would NEVER breed a great performance dog if the temperament was not sound. Why try to make excuses for a bad temperament? what is wrong with some people! lol
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Old 06-22-2009, 10:55 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I would NEVER breed a great performance dog if the temperament was not sound. Why try to make excuses for a bad temperament? what is wrong with some people! lol
I agree,
unless of course that dogs only use was for killing other dogs,then nothing much would matter besides it doing its job,if it had a nasty temperment so be it,or was of nervous type and scared of a leaf[which ive heard of happening in many game dogs] but fight crazy in the presence of other dogs,but thats a topic for another thread,or perhaps another forum.
The reason i posted such a comment is are breed was created for fighting,and i believe a few killers went into the gene pool with bad temperments based souly on fighting ability with no regard for temperment other than it be fight crazy and or game.
"see dog aggresion towards handler thread."
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Old 06-23-2009, 12:15 PM   #11 (permalink)
 
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All in all doesn't matter about the past because we now "need" to health test in many aspects or consider yourself helping destroy the breed is my take on it. You can walk around thinking your dog is totally healthy all you want because there are no visible signs but as we all know by the time there are signs it's usually to late to do anything about it.... Better safe then sorry. Yes dogs of the past were healthier that's not doing nothing for us now since we are having so many health issues and need to test so we can better the breed with selective breeding.

I also agree dogs with bad hips is a serious fault but there would be no way for anyone to know that dog has bad hips unless the owner is honest... Everything depends on one's ethics in the end.
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Old 06-23-2009, 12:25 PM   #12 (permalink)
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i think its ironic that more show people do health testing and never do any thing physically demanding with there dogs.... but the majority of WP people never get there dogs hips checked... interesting
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Old 06-23-2009, 12:48 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I think that today yes we need to health test because people of today can not think past the end of their noses sometimes. I have heard so many times I have a dog and I want to breed her. WHY????? What has your dog proven other than it goes into heat.

People of yesterday were more sensible and not in it for the MONEY. They wanted a good descently breed sound dog.

I don't plan on ever breeding dogs but I would certainly health test and prove my stock before I even thought about having a litter of pups.



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Old 06-23-2009, 01:56 PM   #14 (permalink)
 
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i think its ironic that more show people do health testing and never do any thing physically demanding with there dogs.... but the majority of WP people never get there dogs hips checked... interesting
I have thought that for years! I will do hips and then once a year the dogs go in for a physical. I have a great vet that manipulates the joints to make sure everything still feels good. If there are any concerns we do x-rays. I want a structurally sound dog but because I put so much stress on my dogs body I want to make sure they stay that way. Too many people work the dogs the wrong way for wait till a knee blows before they find out they have a problem.
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Old 06-23-2009, 05:08 PM   #15 (permalink)
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All in all doesn't matter about the past because we now "need" to health test in many aspects or consider yourself helping destroy the breed is my take on it.
It cant hurt thats for sure,but it becomes less of a issue when selection is based on working type and temperament,I'm not gonna pass up the dog that is extremely sharp in the temperament category and proportioned for work just because the breeder didn't health test and settle for a dog that was health tested and,bred to standard but has a lesser working drive,and when i talk about hip's not being perfect I'm not talking about a horrible ofa score I'm talking about a dog who's hips are good or average as compared to excellent,what good is a dog with excellent hips if it doesn't have the heart or drive to use them?
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You can walk around thinking your dog is totally healthy all you want because there are no visible signs but as we all know by the time there are signs it's usually to late to do anything about it.....
But hopefully by this time the dog will have had a decent career as a working dog,even healthy dogs are hurt during rigorous activity's,i in know way am advocating working a gimp with a sharp mind but advocating working the dog with the sharpest temperament to get the job done,and if forum follows function this dog should be healthy based only on selection for working type[healthy] and temperament based on breeding for the same traits from sire and dam ,in other words if the sire and dam are healthy sound working stock so should the progeny be,correct?
This was the basis of selection by the dog men of the past,and dogs were generally healthier,seems like it was a working formula,and if done correctly health testing would just be a security measure,but less important than breeding for dogs bred for aesthetic over function or confirmation.
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Better safe then sorry..
of course.I'm not advocating not health testing,I'm just saying when breeding correctly it becomes of less importance,by all means health test if your selecting for less the function and proper working form.
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I also agree dogs with bad hips is a serious fault but there would be no way for anyone to know that dog has bad hips unless the owner is honest... Everything depends on one's ethics in the end.
Theres a diffrence between bad hips and hips that aren't perfect,with this breed if the hips are less than perfect but far from bad you'd never know and the dog would never show signs of it since they have high pain thresholds and are generally well muscled dogs
Good posting by the way,I'm not arguing but playing devils advocate and offering a alternative point of view,as of this time i have two pit bulls,neither were health tested and one i can tell is healthy as a ox just by evaluating his temperament and athletic ability[a unhealthy dog could not do what he does],
as for the pup,it's to early to tell but by health testing a puppy I'm not too sure that issues that wouldn't be clear even to a vet early on wouldn't crop up later which would make bi/yearly vet visits important until a proper evaluation could be done,further more issues such as weak cruciate ligaments wouldn't be clear until they were torn so some issues wouldn't be spotted with health testing.
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