I think it's GREAT you've waited until she's two and plan on doing helath testing!
Will you be doing all of the health testing recommended by OESCA, and adhering to OESCA's breeder code of ethics? (are you a member of OESCA?)
I also think it's great that you've come back here to discuss your breeding plans. One of the things people are probably going to be asking about is pedigrees, sire & dam health history and bloodlines, and I'm WAAAAAY over my head with that subject.
I hope we can all have a great discussion on what it takes to be a breeder to give your gorgeous girl the best chance at having a healthy litter! I LOVE puppies!
|Yes I sure will!|
|Hahaha, Sorry! I added a whole bunch to my post after you saw it. whoooops!|
|Ron, i am not a member of oesca yet, but only because i wasn't aware of it until about a few months ago when i started looking into breeding Zoe. I read the oesca code of ethics and think it's an amazing guidline for when i breed her. Here's my real dillema though. The town i live in is so small, and the only OES's that are here are related to her. So i have to go out of the county....I don't know how to do that or where to look for a stud...and I'm wanting this process to move as quickly as possible given i want to breed her during her next heat. |
another dillema...zoe is small. She is only 52 lbs....
she is beautiful, well groomed, healthy, not underweight at all according to her vet....but she's small for an oes. is that going to be a huge issue when it comes to finding someone to breed her with? If so...i'm not sure if i want to spend all the money on testing and certifications if everybody is going to deny her. She's absolutely perfect in every other way. I've compared her to the AKC breed standard and she is exactly what they describe.
so many thoughts. very excited to have people help who actually know what they're talking about!
thanks so much you guys!
michelle and zoe
Welcome! We've actually met and I have had my hands on your puppy and seen her dam.
Bear in mind the woman who bred Zoe is doing so to generate income. She is upfront about it. That said, I doubt she has ever done any medical testing, so you have no idea what you are going to find. She discovered the same difficulty you are facing: without a finished championship, health testing and some genetic gifts, most folks will opt to pass on the breeding. So she bought a stud. I have no idea what he looks like.
She has been at it for at least 5 years now and we don't know what genetic issues may be lurking. Therefore it might be worth it to do the testing on Zoe, even if you decide not to breed. It would be helpful to know what you have.
I was surprised to hear that Zoe is small. Her dam seemed up on leg and certainly not slight. Zoe seemed up on leg to me when I met her in Sept 09 - but its hard to tell with puppies. You never know if they have just had a growth spurt. You mentioned her weight, but not her height. How tall is she?
Temperament and health are paramount and that pretty much makes the case for doing the testing. Conformation seems like it should always be secondary however the poorly constructed dog who is cow hocked, for example, will have joint issues later in life. The only way you really know how well your bitch is conforming to breed standard is to have her judged - that's why we show, as the purpose of AKC shows is to evaluate breeding stock.
As a side note, you do have some nice stud champions within minutes from you in Sonora. One is so nice I have begging for them to breed him. In fact, I've asked to buy him. I adore that dog. But it is a no go - as their dogs are their kids and they wouldn't think of selling one of their children nor make puppies that they wouldn't have in their home. Please bear in mind that Zoe's breeder contacted them to use their stud dog and they declined and I would expect a similar response.
Also, there are some shows coming up, so perhaps we could get together at one of those so you can get a feel for conformation. There are no Old English entered in the Merced show this weekend. There are 3 entered in Sacramento the weekend after that. Vallejo is Easter weekend and just closed, so no idea who is entered. There is a show in Hollister the following weekend. Also there is a Old English Specialty show May 6&7 in Pomona where there is generally a large turn out. It might be helpful to see what's in the show ring. Here is a link to find shows in California:
I'm thrilled that you found this site. There are such terrific resources here. Please take the time and read the threads on breeding and backyard breeders. Good stuff!
Again, welcome and great seeing you here! Please feel free to PM me should you wish more specific info!
If I can ask...Why do you want to breed Zoe?? Are you planning on becoming an OESCA approved breeder? Do you want just one litter? Will you have furever homes for the pups before Zoe is bred? Did Zoe come from an OESCA approved breeder? Can you talk to your breeder about the criteria to follow before a breeding?
I am hoping one of our OESCA breeders on this forum will respond to your questions. I know very little about breeding ~~ I am considered a 'newbie' to this breed..... But here are some things I learned in the 3 years since "Heart' came into my life.
An OESCA approved breeder will not breed the dog until they have their Championship. This will verify that the dog adheres closely to the breed standard. This is what many of the 'male' dog breeders will look at before deciding about a mutual breed.
An OESCA approved breeder will not consider a mutual breeding until they review the health tests on the female. and you should review the tests from the male.
Health testing is extremely important. Although it does not guarentee that there will be no health issues of the future litter, it does give both breeders scientific documention that both mom and dad have good, strong hips, heart, eyes are healthy etc.
Finding a stud is something that may be difficult if you are not willing to send your little girl, possibly by plane to the male for breeding. I know many of the OESCA approved breeders that fly their pups from one of the country to the other, including Canada. And then, a successful breeding may not even take place.
Many stud owners require 1, 2 or 2 of the pups as payment in lieu of or in addition to a stud fee. But you would be responsible for the cost one hundred percent.
If you are a techvet, then you are aware of how expensive to have a litter. Multiple Ultrasounds, prenatal care, possible C-sections, bobbing the tail and dewclaws etc.
From birth to 9 weeks you will be getting NO sleep. You will be washing linens, and washing linens...acclimating the puppies to humans, possible hand feeding. You must chart each puppy, their progress from weight, to socialization, to what place they have in the litter..alpha, timid, shy etc. And much much more.
Again...All this is just impressions of what a OESCA quality breeder has to contend with..not to mention giving their heart to these precious creature only to have to say goodbye to them and send them off with strangers hoping that she made the right decision and THEIR pup will have a happy healthy life...
I am really hoping other forum members will 'chime in' on this.
|Hi Michelle: You are getting some very good infromation here so I won't repeat on it. I hope you will take it as constructive information from people who are passionate about this breed. One thing I would like to add is to make sure your girl has an AKC full registration & not an AKC limited registration. Same would go for the sire. If either 1 or the other is limited, you will not be able to register the litter with AKC & could not get papers for them nor advertise them as AKC Old English Sheepdog puppies. Especially study the pedigrees for health issues not only in the parents but in all 5 generations back.|
another dillema...zoe is small. She is only 52 lbs....
she is beautiful, well groomed, healthy, not underweight at all according to her vet....but she's small for an oes. is that going to be a huge issue when it comes to finding someone to breed her with? michelle and zoe
Wow, some great advice here. I would definitely consider taking Quailtrail up on a "tour" of some shows with OES entries. Most of us spend years studying dogs vis-a-vis the standard, getting our hands on as many dogs as possible, with mentors to help us go over the finer points so we're sure we really know what we're looking at.
Small is somewhat relative and somewhat dictated by where you are. You're in an area where OES tend to be a bit taller than the breed average in the US, while I'm predominantly in an area where OES tend to be on the smaller (heightwise) end up the spectrum. I happen to like smaller OES for working purposes very much, but realize that it's not all about pure poundage.
We frequently get tall (by my standards) dogs into rescue here, but they weigh next to nothing compared to most OES I know because they have no bone, i.e. no substance. Also, their topline is often off, roach backed, usually (the topline is one of the defining characteristics of the breed and very important as I'm sure you realized when you read the standard). There are judges who have been judging the breed for years who don't seem to know how to go over one or evaluate what is correct So if you're interested in learning about the breed standard make sure you have people help you go over that one in detail, but I digress.
Anyway, at a guess, and it would be more helpful if her height at the withers was known, Zoe probably doesn't have a lot of substance. Now, a bitch does not need to be as massive as a dog (male), and there are many very nice more refined bitches. But you have to evaluate the total "package". My rescue dog, probably 23-24" at the withers (so taller than all of my bitches from show lines, but weighing in at about ten pounds less) weighs about the same as your Zoe. Quite honestly, she is more sighthound in type than OES. BUT, her slight build also makes her incredibly athletic. If Zoe is otherwise sound, and I'd x-ray hips to make sure of this, and have someone look over her structure (balance is very important) she might be a good candidate for agility. A big digression, I know, but it struck me as you were describing her so I felt compelled to mention it.
This is my rescue girl, Dazzle:
Small, even though she's tall, obviously works for her
That said, she should never be bred. (She's spayed, so not an issue) In addition to being completely lacking in type, she's also undershot. That's OK. She's found her niche: jumping over things!
If you really want to breed Zoe, why not consider showing her? If she's as exceptional as you say you'll finish her championship, meet people in the breed, and develop contacts that way. She's only two. You have time and you have options. And a great opportunity to get more involved in the breed in the mean time.
|Hi Michelle, welcome to the forum. I having nothing to add, just wanted to say hello. You have received excellent information from highly respected members of not only our forum, but the "OES world". Ask questions away, I'm sure they will be more than happy to enlighten you!|
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