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11,428 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Heterosis or hybrid vigour is the opposite of inbreeding depression. Inbreeding
depression often occurs naturally when out breeding animals or plants are inbred. This
can be recognised by loss of overall fitness, lowering or loss of fertility and reduced
In the past there have been some very famous hybrid bull & terriers such as the famous
badger field trials dogs Kilwilkie lad (Stafford male) * (English bull terrier bitch), and the
famous pit dog Stormer (English bull terrier bitch * “pit bull terrier” dog). No doubt an
important reason for the success of the former in badger trials and the latter in the pit was
due to their hybrid vigour. Hybrid vigour leads to dogs that are nearly always stronger
and more athletic than the parents (humans are no exception to this rule). It is often
thought that crosses between different breeds such as an English bull terrier and a
Staffordshire bull terrier is required for hybrid vigour. However dogs of the same breed
but of very different bloodlines i.e. American pit bull terriers crossed with other
American pit bull terriers; can also express varying degrees of hybrid vigour. In the
shadowy world of dog fighting and **** fighting these dogs are known as battle crosses.
A battle cross is a cross of different lines, or in extreme cases even different breeds for
use in battle (here meaning the pit or badger trials). Hybrids are not themselves used to
produce offspring, as hybrid vigour is greatly reduced in the offspring of hybrid dogs.
Therefore a battle cross is the offspring of two successful highly inbred dogs but from
very diverging lines or different breeds.
Lurchers are a good example of hybrid dogs. “Lurcher” is the name given for any dog
crossed with a greyhound. Lurchers are generally used for the hunting of hares (although
bull-lurchers are also used for the hunting of foxes and deer). A greyhound although fast
is a very inbred animal, that is extremely suited to one thing only, (racing on a well
conditioned race track.). This can result in very weak bones (very unsuitable for the
bumpy surface or quick turning that would be required for hare coursing on an English
field). For Lurchers that are hybrids (stronger and more hardy) this is not a problem;
therefore the use of lurchers rather than greyhounds for hare coursing. Lurchers are the
perfect example of hybrid working dogs.
But why don’t hybrids always result in an improvement? The answer is simple; hybrid
vigour only results in improvement of the offspring as compared to the parents. So don’t
expect to take two low performing parents and get offspring that are superior to the best
game or working dogs already out there. (Note it is also important to keep in mind that out
crossing even within a specific breed leads to far more genetic scatter and variation, resulting in a
line that is not “tight”. This will result in a lot of “undesirable” garbage. Within that “garbage”

11,428 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
however there will always be some rare diamonds, better even than the best of the best*best
Hybrids (such as Stormer) are often criticised by “ dog men” for not producing (and
rightly so), this because it is only the hybrid itself that has the hybrid vigour. So if you
have a successful hybrid the best option for producing, is to continue making crosses
from the parents of the successful hybrid, but NOT the hybrid itself.
(Champion Stormer a “ battle cross” on the left. An English bull terrier * pit bull terrier cross. Most
famous for defeating Ricky B’ s champion Psycho. This contest was very famous at the time for the most
amount of money ever waged on an English or Irish dogfight.
How can we tell if two lines have good genetic distances between them? If you have a
lot of money then genetic testing is the answer. Different methods of DNA analysis can
now score the level of genetic distance between two lines. Allowing you to make a cross
within a breed and achieve hybrid vigour, however this method is expensive. The other
way is to examine the pedigree of the two lines; trying to find as many differences as
possible. Lines of dogs of the same breed but have been separated in different countries
for a long period of time, will usually show a degree hybrid vigour.
Main points to remember when exploiting hybrid vigour or heterosis.
· Achieved by crossing unrelated inbred lines or breeds
· The more distantly related the lines, the greater the hybrid vigor in the crosses
(beware as also the greater scatter).
· The greater degree of dominance at loci affecting a trait, the more hybrid vigor
· Traits exhibiting the most hybrid vigor are the lowly heritable traits (gameness?)

Author’s bio.
The author Doug Link has a post graduate degree in biotechnology from a UK university,
worked as an agricultural breed and species improvement specialist. He also breeds both
English bull terriers and Taiwan/Shammo roosters on a small scale. This article and its
modified form have been published in “ the game dog” magazine and “Earth Dog
Running Dog” Magazine. He can be contacted indirectly through web site link above.

15 wins 3 losses
461 Posts
Thanks for sharing Sadie :)

I remember coming across this article when I first joined the site when I was googling some info on gameness to help me understand it more. But I enjoyed re-reading it again.

K9 Pshrynk & Conciliare~
6,363 Posts
Good stuff.... As usual. Our slang use of term has put new words and changed and given other words extra meanings, this is such a term. World English Dictionary hybrid (ˈhaɪbrɪd) although the hybrid term is highly debated among scientists and bio researchers, a true canine hybrid would be dog and jackal males would be sterile and only the females can produce much like the F1,F2 bengals of Asian Leopard cat X Siamese or Egytian Maui.. OR Ligers a Lion sire Tiger dam, Tion Tiger sire Lion dam the offspring are sterile except females... why? Ligers and Tions are much more intelligent stronger but they are controlled by nature because if it takes place in the wild then the females would only breed back to tigers or be in a pride of lions inwhich tiger or lion gets washed out usefully in a very inbred evironment. I wonder if WAY back when there was the inbred pit bulldog, the dog that the mastiff and terrier both came from, would produce a sterile dog if bred out as he is describing.. ifso then trully the pit bulldog would have been its OWN breed of canidid. seperate from the gene pool like the jackal. Wolves X dogs ARE not hybrids, they can breed openly male and female with any other canine. Foxes and dogs would be a mutant.. LOL but a true hybrid.. the hybrid term is as loose as the hinges on a brothels door..

600 Posts
They are all tools that are a part of a bigger tool set, concentrate too much on one and you will lose the benifits of the other , using too much at once and none will shine through. And thats why i buy dogs and dont breed them!
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