I'll blog, I'll blog...today I am feeling like a fiesty Fido. That so many wonderful oodley kids are in rescue is so sad to me. And, I know it is sad to those breeders who do all of the health and temperament testing possible to provide a puppy with the absolute best opportunity to become a happy, life long, loved, family companion.
But, what about those who do not...those who cross, say, Poodles with Boxers, or German Shepherd dogs with Beagles and call them Germbeagles, Why? I just don't get it. I see adverts all over the web for these unusual mixes and I know I will, as a rescuer, see them again in animal control and other rescue sites down the road. I will see them on euthanasia lists from local kill shelters. So, why? If a Poodle and a Labrador make a super cross, or a Poodle and a Golden Retriever...what makes us think that such a cross among such more "opposite" types and kinds of dogs will be 'good'?
I just don't get why back yard breeders, or puppy millers, or neighbors even, think more is better. It isn't. What is the purpose of crossing Lassie and Rin Tin Tin...why can't they just be friends?
When I look at the extensive health and temperament testing 'good' breeders do on their parent dogs, assuring that the lineages, Breed or Mixed Breed, will be outstanding at high Veterinarian cost before insemination and after, and then a pup of some indiscriminate cross, just for fun and some pocket change, I get steamed.
Thousands of dogs a week, thousands of Just for Fun crosses are being euthanized each week in South Florida because the economy and the potential owners cannot afford the illness, injury, emotional, or psycic issues that come with owning a dog who has come with massive genetic propensity for issues with temperament or health. Are too big, too small. I'm wishing the Breeders with a conscience would take their mark in the sites of their rifles and find a way to stop colleagues who are off their nutspace in the development of an oodle anything or breed cross of anything. Crossing a St. Bernard and a Chi dog is not only not a good idea, it is often a danger to the mommy dog. We generally do not see such mixes among the members of the AKC, or the CKC or the UKC. So who is doing this, and why? Have we become such a demanding society for unusual mixed breeds that anything goes? Is it we who are flakey?
Here we save dogs that come to our attention. Here we care that the end time is coming near. Here we care about the temperament of an oodley dog, but our question must be...who is out there making unreliable guesses about the outcome of a match between two dogs who, inherently have specific genaological parentage to: herd, hunt, do therapy work, act as a service dog, but who also has joint disease, eye issues, potential for Cushings or vonWildebrands?
Who will become actively engaged to put the 'breeders' of these untested, poorly matched parent dogs through the expensive and thorough, painful (sometimes) vetting and testing of these potential pups.. eyes, temperament, displaysia, joint disease, propensity for Addisons, Cushings, vonWildebrands. Who demands that the parent dogs be tested prior to breeding? Our dogs are not quantifiable by the numbers in the litter or their cuteness as pups, rather by what is known in the genetic markers and the physical and emotional well being of the parents to the pups from the litter. Imagine if you will you wanted a hunting dog, you found a herding dog cross that "looked" like and was billed as a retriever. Is this going to work for you? Probably not. What are the chances then this dog will end up in a shleter one day Highly possible I say, and how in the world will this ever be stopped. I just feel so much for the oodle dog that isn't, and I really don't know what to do. Where does change start? Is there an answer. Today, this moment, I just don't know. I suspect we need a national dialogue between breeders and rescuers to get to the bottom of this problem.
Dr. Judith LaVorgna