Rearing Puppies Gods Way

Posted on 08/02/2009

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Here is a great post about natural, God approved dog breeding and rearing.

When we do things in an artificial way, the way of man, we make dogs weaker, sicker and mutated.

This article is a warning to all those who love dogs that can do their historic jobs that help us survive on a hostile planet.

Ami Moore

Chicago Dog Coach.

www.chicagodogcoach.com

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Husbandry and Hypocrisy, or When Fanciers Attack

Toumlilt (Lily), one our Azawakh, raised outside.

If you are one of our small number of readers that actually reads the dog related posts, you will know that I am adamantly against legislation that specifies engineering based standards for keeping dogs. I don’t think how big the kennel is, what the dog eats, whether it’s tethered or kenneled, indoors or outdoors, how many dogs there are in a home, has a damned thing to do with whether the animal is well-cared for or happy. I much prefer performance based regulations: is the dog of good weight for the breed, health issues taken care of or under treatment, has access to food, water and shelter? That is what I mean by performance based. Dog husbandry, the practice of caring for dogs, is so extremely variable, that regulations specifying things like food fed and how often or kennel size do nothing but make criminals out of law-abiding citizens. Caring for twenty Chihuahuas is an entirely different thing than caring for twenty Great Danes. Certainly there are people who have the time, money and skill to care for many dogs, and those that are unable to take care of even one. New laws will do nothing against people who would have broken the old ones.

Azawakh pups bred by Daoud Abdullah Abdullah, Idiyat-es-Sahel

I know many people who keep more than the ‘usual’ (what the hell does that mean, anyways? Usual for what?) number of dogs. All of the dogs are well-cared for, well fed, active and happy. None of us does much of anything in the same manner. Vaccine schedules, food, pens or paddocks, crates, separating out bitches in heat, we all do things differently. The vast majority of people who keep dogs do so in a way that works for them, for their home and lifestyle, for their breed and their particular dogs. It is highly counterproductive to attempt to put such variable practices into law, and this is why dog people (I am not a member of the fancy, I think it sounds stupid and frankly elitist), put up such a hue and cry when such laws are proposed.

Azawakh pups bred by Daoud Abdullah Abdullah, Idiyat-es-Sahel

There is still a large contingent of people out there that think their way is the only way. All dogs in the house, never outside unsupervised, all spayed or neutered, bathed once a week, yadda, yadda, yadda. Many of these people are well-meaning but simply ignorant that there are other ways not their own. Many are junior animal rights fanatics, who truly do think their way is the only way, that dogs are little people in fur coats and must be treated a certain way. Most of these people are not dog people. Dog people, true dog people who care passionately for the welfare of dogs, tend to be pretty tolerant of differences. I frequent several message boards, getting the lay of the land, or testing the waters, if you prefer. I encounter a lot of people who are surprisingly open minded, perfectly willing to accept that someone else may care differently for their dogs than they do. Usually this takes the form of “Well, I wouldn’t do it that way myself, but it obviously works for you, and your dogs are healthy and happy, so carry on.”

Our Zebu lying in a tire


That’s why it is so incredibly disappointing for me to find out that an acquaintance of mine, Vladimir Beregovoy, has actually been the target of a campaign of intimidation by the so-called fancy. This occurred on a mailing list that I am on. I saw a conspiracy among several people to bring pressure to bear on this man, to get his dogs taken away from him, seemingly through any means necessary, by members of the fancy. Don’t think I’m exaggerating. I read the messages myself, and I’m being pretty restrained in my analysis. I was, to put it bluntly, gobsmacked.

So what caused this brouhaha? Did he beat his dogs, starve them, make them live without shelter in the snow?

Timur and Adel, sire and dam of the pups in question


Nope. He allowed his healthy Saluki bitch to whelp in her wooden dog house. Horrors! Worse, she removed the blanket so the pups were on bare wood. Could it be possible that the bitch knows best? After all, the weather is warm, there’s no danger of the pups getting chilled. They are sheltered from the sun and rain, and their mother is there to clean them, feed them and keep them warm if they need it. But no! A truly responsible breeder would make her keep the blanket. Screw her instincts. She should be locked in the house in a sterile whelping box with a heat lamp and blankets! That’s the way it’s done! Get that man’s dogs away from him before he can do more damage!
The control issues and desire to dictate behavior behind the entire incident would have kept a whole college of psychologists busy for a year.


The offending picture of the litter in question

I’ll tell you what I thought when I first saw this picture: Damn! That is a really big litter! Then I tried to count the pups. It honestly never occurred to me to get up in arms about there being no blanket. Maybe that’s because I live in a hot climate and my dogs, including bitches with pups, frequently eschew their blankets in favor of dirt or bare floors. Maybe it’s because I’ve been the target of people who think I don’t take proper care of my dogs, since we don’t have air-conditioning and I allow them to go outside into the yard whenever they like (OMG, my poor dogs, baking in the heat, possibly getting into trouble on their own!) Maybe it’s because I’ve seen a dozen pictures almost exactly like it on the hunting forum I frequent. Maybe it’s because the dam and pups were obviously healthy and comfortable, and who am I to tell them they’re wrong?

Airedale pups bred by Don Turnipseed, High Country Airedales

It was commented that these dogs and pups are the ‘poster children’ for anti-breeding groups like PeTA and HSUS, that keeping dogs in such a way is detrimental to the rights of the fancy.

Bullshit.

Do these pups look like poster children for a bad standard of care?


What is detrimental to the fancy is to take a case that perfectly illustrates performance based standards, and have a shit fit about a blanket or lack thereof. Such a response plays right into the hands of those people who think breeding and keeping dogs should be controlled by rules and regulations, measurements and thermometers and disinfectants. Anyone who fails to see the hypocrisy in decrying the conditions under which an obviously healthy litter is being kept, and in the next breath, whining and moaning about how overreaching kennel regulations will be the death of dog breeding, needs to have an MRI. Because they’ve got some synapses that aren’t firing. Calling this situation abuse or neglect, cruel or uncaring, when it is clearly none of those things, cheapens the terms as they apply to real cruelty or neglect. There was an Animal Control conference in New Mexico this year, that listed ‘breeding’ as a form of abuse. Is that the reality you want to live in? Where anything someone doesn’t approve of, regardless of it’s affect in reality, becomes cruelty or abuse? I see the same thing with the word ‘puppy mill’, which is used so often by members of the fancy to describe an individual they don’t like or approve of that it has no meaning.

High Country pups are raised in family groups and are not handled until they are on their feet.
They have gone on to earn obedience and hunting titles, and become guide and therapy dogs.


It’s not about where the pups are raised. It’s about how the pups are raised, about health, about temperament. It’s about the final result. And you can’t regulate that, nor should you try. Unfortunately, you also cannot regulate common sense. The proof, as they say, is in the pudding, or in this case, the pups. Fat, healthy, clean pups. Normal, healthy, temperamentally stable pups. A textbook case in the application of performance based standards. I used to be fairly rigid in my thinking about dogs, until I actually got to talking to people instead of just judging them from a distance. My interest in dog legislation and the effect such laws would have on my own breeding program has also broadened my horizons because I’ve seen how the animal rights fanatics use the public’s ignorance of animal husbandry to manipulate public opinion. And yes, to get those horrible laws passed that would be death to the fancy.

That is one of the reasons I write these dog articles. Most of our readers are non-dog people. I’m hoping to broaden their horizons. However, I must confess I had another motive with this post. There seems to be a kind of mob mentality among certain cliques within the fancy. Individuals seem to egg each other on, and it becomes a twisted badge of honor to engage in more and more extreme behaviors, usually targeting another person who is not a clique member, and has done something the perpetrators deem ‘wrong.’ As a dog person, these people embarrass me. They make me feel the same way I feel when some sub-standard breeder gets busted. They make all of us look bad. It seems the best way to combat this behavior is to out it, throw it out into the real world outside the fancy and let the light of day shine on it. Like killing a vampire.

I feel it necessary to note that I will be getting one of these pups. I am both thrilled and honored to have one. I have not a single reservation about receiving a pup that has been raised outside. Several of my dogs were raised outside and they are all fine companions and house dogs. I find it highly ironic that so many sighthound breeders brag on how primitive and instinctual their dogs are, how they’ve not been ruined by modern breeding, but when it comes to a dog actually acting in an instinctive manner, and being successful at it, and being allowed to do it, shock and horror reigns. It’s a pity that we can’t be like the dogs, getting on about our own business instead of getting up in everybody else’s. Where do these people, to use their own term, get off on assuming that just because a dog lives outside, it is unloved or uncared for? How do these people decide that this bitch and her pups are neglected? Who decides whether the dogs are happy or content? My own dogs would be surprised to know that they need blankets, beds and toys, as they lie, by their own choice, in a hole in the dirt, gnawing on a stick.

Posted in: Dog Breeders