Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Evaluating "show potential"

Have you ever wondered how breeders determine what puppies to keep and what ones should be placed in families?

How do they figure out who is going to love the glamour of the show ring, who is a therapy dog, and who wants to live with kids?

A major reason that reputable breeders do not let people pick their own puppies is so that they can evaluate, and choose the best homes possible.

Responsible breeders are completely devoted to their breeding programs and their puppies’ well beings long before they are even conceived. Breedings are planned carefully. Not all puppies are destined to be champion show dogs, and more importantly not all puppies want to be!

In every breed there are certain characteristics, and a set breed standard that cannot be overlooked for any reason. In the CKCS those characteristics are;

Temperament and health are characteristics that every puppy in a litter should have.

Structure and type are a little more difficult, and can vary a great deal from one another. In this stage, evaluation of a litter can get interesting.

Opinion and help from other breeders is welcomed and encouraged.

Sometimes this evaluation takes place in the form of a great social get together. We ooo and ahh over the cuteness of the new babies, have a few drinks, and get down to business of trying to determine who has the best structure and type.

Many breeders use and refer to Pat Hastings Puppy Puzzle which evaluates puppies at 8 weeks old.

Conformation dogs are judged entirely on temperament, structure, and type.

Without superior examples of all characteristics a dog has no chance in the show ring.

Have you ever wanted to venture into the show ring?

Maybe you are a breeder and already love to show, how did you go about getting your first show potential puppy?

Is everyone watching/enjoying Westminster?

2 comments:

  1. That is a very interesting and great post! Thanks! Lots of love, Holly and mom

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  2. This is really good information. I love the skeletal picture that you have up, and the picture of the puppy below it looks like it matches perfectly with what the structure is supposed to be. I like that you make the evaluation a social thing, because I think that as many eyes as possible should be looking at the puppies. What one person might miss, another one could catch!

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