POPULARITY AND BREEDING

AKC Gazette

June 2007

AMELIA AVERIL

POPULARITY AND BREEDING

 

According to AKC registration statistics, the Bulldog now ranks number 12 in popularity. In 2006 there were 8,967 Bulldog litters registered. It represents an increase of 487 more litters than in 2005.

When a breed reaches this level in the statistics, or is one of the largest entries in a dog show, it takes 44 bitches and 39 dogs to make a 5-point major (as in the case here in New Jersey), it is time for us all to reflect on what is happening. Overpopulation of any breed has always meant problems for that breed. Maybe it is time to stop promoting our beloved breed so heavily, and to work on a new goal of encouraging only very selective breeding and the protection of our breed. Indiscriminate breeding should be discouraged at all costs.

Ideally, bitches should be bred when the breeder is looking for something to show for himself. Not every bitch one breeds should be bred. Certainly no dog or bitch with major faults should be bred. And those fortunate enough to own a show bitch should wait until she finished her title before breeding her.

Remember, many puppy buyers are simply looking to buy a family pet and to have no interest in showing or breeding. Sometimes, after a new buyer listens to the breeder talk about show quality and pet quality and sees show pictures, the breeder has unwittingly encouraged another person down the road to breeder-exhibitor without fully explaining the work and dedication required.

It’s easy for infectious enthusiasm for breeding to rub off on a purchaser – even when the new owner does not have the means or is not prepared for the task. For new owners have adequate facilities to raise and care for a litter. In Bulldogs the costs are high, starting with a stud fee, C-section, and the cost of raising the litter to at least 8 weeks of age. People should be made aware of what raising a Bulldog litter entails. It takes a lot of work, time, effort, and money to see it through.

National Specialty. On November 20/23, the Bulldog Club of America held its 2006 national specialty in Orlando, Florida, at the Rosen Plaza Hotel. It was clear to all who attended that a lot of effort was put into making this show successful. Intersex was judged by Mrs. Jean Hetherington. Congratulations to Best of Breed Ch. MyToys Mighty Colors of the Wind and Best of Opposite Ch. Cherokee Legend Pretty Boy.

Amelia Averil, 8 Willow Brook Rd., Hillsdale, NJ 07612.