Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Ogle of the Day

Have a look at this. It's plagued me for a long time... "Old-Fashioned German Shepherds". Meaning an overweight, oversized, and generally unattractive (imo) version of a GSD. Something I certainly wouldn't breed, regardless of OFA scores. You see, I'm a person who believes that when you breed dogs, you should focus on the standard, rather than trends, eye appeal, or whatever other reason there may be for breeding poor quality dogs. Is it just me, or do these guys look like oversize, plush teddy bears? I'll give them kudos, as "Zack" is very cute. On the side of their page, it links more "oversize GSD breeders". OVERsized. Too big, wide load. Good thing you have OFA testing going on, because I have a feeling most of these guys' hips are going to cave in by the time they reach 6. While they aren't breeding the "roach-backed" GSD variety we so often see, it's still disheartening to see people trying to blow the GSD out of proportion and way off from the breed standard. And gluing puppies ears sounds kind of cruel to me. I know many people do it (we had a lady in our Schutzhund class glue her pups ears), but I just can't imagine how annoying it would be to have your ears glued together. I am a natural dog owner - let them stay as they sit! If your dog's ears aren't perky, then maybe it's time for better breeding practices (omg, yes, prick and non-prick ears are hereditary, who knew?) and maybe NOT letting your oversize drop-eared GSD breed so you can glue more drop-eared puppies.

I just don't get it - it's like breeding shortwide pits, IMO. I think "Old-Fashioned" GSDs are too bulky, and that takes away a lot of their utility and athleticism. The GSD loves to work, and the added weight just may hinder that ability. Maybe I'm a little stiff with my notions on breeding, but (with the exception of the brachycephalic breeds) the standard is there not only for looks, but with the dog's health in mind.

I'm not calling these people out as bad breeders or anything (most I have seen do OFA testing), but I don't support breeding outside the standard. If I had it my way, 3/4 of the canine population would be spayed and neutered... but I don't. :P

Have a great Wednesday!


PixieCorpse said...

What the heck? Why are they called "old-fashioned"? The early 20th century GSDs tended to weigh sixty-odd pounds, didn't they?

These are monster dogs with heads like Newfies or something. There's nothing old school about them.

LegendsLiveOn said...

THAT is what an Old-Fashioned German Shepherd should look like, if at all. That is the original, founding German Shepherd Dog sire. These guys look like bears. There's a big difference there.

megan colleen said...

They look like a cross between a karelian bear dog and a Caucasian Ovcharka dog. Not like working german shepherd. These GSDs seem to prescribe to the "I'm not fat. I'm FLUFFY!" movement.

I was thinking of the squat and wide pitbulls as I looked at their pictures too. Just ew.

I know my pooch is a pit mix but he looks a lot more like "old fashioned" pitbulls from the early 1900s than some of the dogs from OutKast's Kennel Pit Fall which seem to breed more for the color blue than anything else.

pipsophiepip said...

I'll admit I'd kind of like to hug one of those fluffy tanks, but I'd hate to see what kind of medical issues crop up from breeding for size, good hips or not.

Also, I don't know if you've seen this yet or not, but I thought you might be interested after your post a while ago about Cesar Milan. The American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior has issued a statement on Dominance Theory in animal training. Here's a link; it's good reading:

L said...

Do you think that the AKC standards actually are preserving the working, useful conformation of these breeds? The topic of open vs closed registries has come up many times on the dog and horse blogs that I read, like Mutt Puppies on Trial, Fugly Horse, and Terrierman, and it's always an interesting post.

GoLightly said...

That's a tough word, "useful". Some dogs were bred, solely for our use. Like feet-warmers:)
Food. To look more human. Eww.
With no thought to "function" or health of the dog. To it's use, only.
Retrievers. Herders. The purest of those breeds look the most like a "functional" dog. To me anywho.

That looks like an old style shepherd dog. Some have started calling them "English Shepherds" I think? The fluffy was handy in the wet and cold. Slick coats are for warmer places. Yeah, nice mutt:) German, English, who cares? They used to be Alsatians, ya know:)
Thanks DGF:)
Let me go read the link re: Cesar.
Missed that!
That its headed by the AVSAB will make me look at it with sharpened eyes. Don't forget that vets lose $ when the dog behaves, too. Vets have a hard enough time making sure the pets are ok.
Don't throw the baby out with the bath water:)

GoLightly said...

Yup, sorry the article is so close to bunkness. So sad. The AVSAB whatever, is for behaviour prevention, and behaviour modification. "Removing the reinforcement for undesirable behaviour". Try spouting THAT off to the regular dog owner.
They pass out from boredom, and they don't have the timing anyway. Tell me HOW you can remove the reinforcement a dog feels/smells/smears eating a piece of good/stinky/dead stuff? You cannot. Dogs will be dogs. People who are dumb will train them badly.
Don't you see?
Cesar must be helping owners, with no $$ outlay. Or are the shelters just full of happy, well-trained, well-adjusted dogs? Don't blame the behaviour of shelter dogs on Cesar. They have enough problems to deal with.
Keep it simple, is Cesar's way. Less $$ for Doggie ProZac, and Doggy Profe$$ional training, and behavioural con$ulting. Big Pharm HATES that. Barking Dog? Separation Anxiety? Please. Drugs_R-Us, should be down at the bottom, too.
That sounds very like the article Jean Donaldson did, with her top 10 myths about Dog Behaviour. Biggest bag-o-crap I ever heard.. Just plain silly stiff, trying to baffle me with bullCrap.

(I had to LOL, looking at the references, baby/bathwater is IN there!)
Thanks DGF

muttpuppiesontrial said...

Breed for standards, or breed for quality?

Two quite different questions. :) The AKC quite literally gets away with murder through their breed standards. Just take a look at their pug standard. "The wrinkles are large and deep. [Hello, cherry eye and demodex.] The muzzle is short, blunt, square. [Breathing difficulty.] The tail is curled as tightly as possible over the hip. The double curl is perfection. [Spine deformities.]" It's not just the brachycephalic breeds, either - I could name the Rhodesian Ridgeback, for one. Then there's the disaster known as the Neapolitan mastiff - and whose idea was the Komondor?

As for these guys, well .. at least their dogs can stand upright. But my inbreeding sense is tingling. (I have the lamest superpower ever.) A healthy GSD is such a good-looking dog; how bizarre and pointless that they'd try to bulk it up like that.

LegendsLiveOn said...

The English Shepherd is quite a different breed - I think oversize GSD's are being passed off as "King Shepherds".

I do not think the AKC is preserving the working quality of breeds, but superficially, they are obsessed. So much of what they have molded breeds into today have detrimental and disastrous results.