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steveoifer

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Reply with quote  #1 

I'm starting this thread with a specific thought behind it.

Although I want this thread to cover ALL aspects related to the tail e.g. carriage, length, thickness, hair length, diseases etc. There has been an overlooked issue which has troubled me for quite some time.

Namely, "happy tail" and it's consequences in the ring!

If a fantastic dog cannot be shown and win because of "happy tail", I personally feel that it's a crime!

A judge can easily see if a dog which has lost an inch off it's tail, would still have made it to the hock or not. It's not rocket science.

I've seen too many dogs have their show careers cut short and never get a well deserved CH title, all because of this NON GENETIC related condition.

The standard needs to state, that a dog with this condition should NOT be seen as defective, or undesirable, providing all other factors are considered worthy.

What say you?


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For the betterment of the breed

"Above all, a uniform type should be aimed at by breeders and uniformity of type can only exist in a proportionate ratio in the purity and distinctiveness in any breed"!.........M. Moore
"If breeds did not adhere to a specific shape, form, and colour range, or if breeders disregarded this blueprint, the breed would degenerate to the point that it would hardly resemble the breed at all. Selective breeding does not just create breeds- it preserves them as well." Breeding purebred dogs inherently means accepting limitations on your freedom to just breed anything...Catherine McMillan
" A reinforced consolidation of the American and British standards could be the basis for restoring our breed to the gladiatorial glory of its ancient past, in capability if not in usage".....Norman Howard Carp-Gordon
"I can live with doubt, or not knowing, rather than to have answers that might be wrong"...Richard Feynman
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Monica

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Reply with quote  #2 

Steve is it a fact that a dog with a docked tail cannot be shown, i.e., the dog would be dismissed?

 

Or is it an unwritten fact that a dog with a docked tail can be shown, will not be dismissed but as unwritten "law" will never or most likely never be put up with a docked tail?

 

I personally think its ashame either way.  A happy tail is a happy dog - think of the temperments that are being turned away..... for starters! 


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steveoifer

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Reply with quote  #3 

A docked tail should not be allowed to enter the ring because we can't know for sure if the tail would have made the correct length, or how it would have been carried. A "happy tail" which has lost an inch is another matter. One can usually see by the contour or outline of the tail that it would have made it to the hock.


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For the betterment of the breed

"Above all, a uniform type should be aimed at by breeders and uniformity of type can only exist in a proportionate ratio in the purity and distinctiveness in any breed"!.........M. Moore
"If breeds did not adhere to a specific shape, form, and colour range, or if breeders disregarded this blueprint, the breed would degenerate to the point that it would hardly resemble the breed at all. Selective breeding does not just create breeds- it preserves them as well." Breeding purebred dogs inherently means accepting limitations on your freedom to just breed anything...Catherine McMillan
" A reinforced consolidation of the American and British standards could be the basis for restoring our breed to the gladiatorial glory of its ancient past, in capability if not in usage".....Norman Howard Carp-Gordon
"I can live with doubt, or not knowing, rather than to have answers that might be wrong"...Richard Feynman
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Monica

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Reply with quote  #4 

Correct please if I have misunderstood the cause of happy tail in my earlier travels, but iis it from excessive banging which causes an infection that does not heal properly and potentially makes it way to the bone.  Okay and I just went out to try and search for Happy Tail on the web and did not find it quickly so I am going with what I have been told Happy Tail is and also what I have been told it is caused by, which I listed above.

 

We limit tail banging around here (kidding...) but we do have a lot of it and it seems the point that makes contact with something solid is about 8-10" up the tail - its thicker and has more power there and hits the hardest - OUCH!

 

So, can't happy tail strike up high on the tail vs. down lower or does it typically set in on the lower part of the tail? 

 

How many inches tail would you say would have to be lost in order to not be able to determine what the length of the tail probably was before the infected section was removed?

 


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steveoifer

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Reply with quote  #5 

Usually the tip gets affected. I'm sure there are exceptions, but I haven't seen many that have lost more than an inch or two. They can break a tail and a crook can form at times, but when it starts to bleed and if bone appears it's about an inch or so that they'll lose.

 

Dogs kept in chain link environments develop this condition as the tail will whack the links and begin bleeding. Sharp edges like corners of walls etc. can create problems as well. There's a reason why Rotts don't have their "birth tails"!

 

I think a Rott would get disqualified if it entered the ring WITH a tail!...LOL

 

Don't you just love the rationalizations for all of the cosmetic fancies?


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For the betterment of the breed

"Above all, a uniform type should be aimed at by breeders and uniformity of type can only exist in a proportionate ratio in the purity and distinctiveness in any breed"!.........M. Moore
"If breeds did not adhere to a specific shape, form, and colour range, or if breeders disregarded this blueprint, the breed would degenerate to the point that it would hardly resemble the breed at all. Selective breeding does not just create breeds- it preserves them as well." Breeding purebred dogs inherently means accepting limitations on your freedom to just breed anything...Catherine McMillan
" A reinforced consolidation of the American and British standards could be the basis for restoring our breed to the gladiatorial glory of its ancient past, in capability if not in usage".....Norman Howard Carp-Gordon
"I can live with doubt, or not knowing, rather than to have answers that might be wrong"...Richard Feynman
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giselle

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Reply with quote  #6 

I was wondering how important people felt tail length was?  Do you consider it a cosmetic fault such as white toenails and light eyes or do you feel is a more important?  Is it easy to breed out ?  My girl has a short tail and as far as I can tell, it didn't hurt her much -- and nobody has really pointed it out to me in their evaluations of her BUT it is VERY SHORT. I'm not sure where it's from as I don't think her mom or dad has a short tail and her siblings that I have seen seem to have normal tail lengths as well.  Do short tailed dogs seem to produce short tailed dogs?

 

Here's a picture of her at 16 months. I am at work and can't seem to find a more recent picture that shows it quite like this one. 

 

 

As an aside,a friend had told me that one of the award of merit winners at the nationals had a tail that was docked quite a bit because of happy tail...so they can and do show!    So, how big an issue is this ??


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steveoifer

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Reply with quote  #7 

It's hereditary, cosmetic and depending on the length, is not that vital.

 

Poor aesthetics are what prevents dogs from winning at times.


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For the betterment of the breed

"Above all, a uniform type should be aimed at by breeders and uniformity of type can only exist in a proportionate ratio in the purity and distinctiveness in any breed"!.........M. Moore
"If breeds did not adhere to a specific shape, form, and colour range, or if breeders disregarded this blueprint, the breed would degenerate to the point that it would hardly resemble the breed at all. Selective breeding does not just create breeds- it preserves them as well." Breeding purebred dogs inherently means accepting limitations on your freedom to just breed anything...Catherine McMillan
" A reinforced consolidation of the American and British standards could be the basis for restoring our breed to the gladiatorial glory of its ancient past, in capability if not in usage".....Norman Howard Carp-Gordon
"I can live with doubt, or not knowing, rather than to have answers that might be wrong"...Richard Feynman
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goldleaf

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Reply with quote  #8 
One of my girls has a short tail, but all of her puppies tails were long. It's something you don't want to double up on if you breed though, just like any other cosmetic fault such as white toenails or light eyes.

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Monica

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Reply with quote  #9 

I think dogs with docked tails should be shown.  Because there is a section on tail length written in the standard the dog will probably have to have other really nice qualities to win over a dog with a "proper tail."  But it would be an absolute shame if a dog with a docked tail and wonderful type, etc., were passed over just because of the docked tail.  

 

Clearly in Giselle's case her girl has nice type and is doing well, despite the fact that she has a shorter tail. 

 

Slightly off topic but I think showing dogs and breeding dogs can be separate....Do all dogs that get shown, get bred?  Dogs are shown at an early age, some reach their championships before they are even old enough to be fully tested.  Being a Champion and enjoying showing your dogs doesn't always equal breeding that dog.  Some might enjoy the sport and how sad that the sport would be cut short because of an injury....

 

Therefore, I think docked tails shoud be allowed and maybe even a certified picture of that dog before the tail was docked should be allowed for the judging process to give that dog an equal advantage. 

 

 


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Reply with quote  #10 

We just recently had our first experience with "Happy Tail."  Our Sinatra got it from just wagging his tail 24/7 and must have wagged it into a wall or piece of furniture.  Boy did that thing bleed.  Yikes!  We got it taken care of w/ vet wrap with the vet, and it healed up.  I cannot imagine any judge thinking less of a dog for a tail injury, but I'm sure it happens.  I have owned quite a variation of tail lengths from correct to gay tail to low tailset.  My least favorite is probably too low of tailset, but again, it's not a huge deal. 

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TamK

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Reply with quote  #11 
Moonshine did quite well as a special with his tail docked. Jann do you have a picture of Moonshine or can you get one from Bob? I would love to see one.

Quote:
A docked tail should not be allowed to enter the ring because we can't know for sure if the tail would have made the correct length, or how it would have been carried.




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Tami
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goldleaf

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Reply with quote  #12 
Here's a picture of Moonshine.


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nancyw

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Reply with quote  #13 

Guess what folks, Ivana had  happy tail and had surgery on her tail!!  It was still the correct  length after the surgery.  If you look close at the end you can see that surgery had been done.

 

Nancy


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Nicci

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Reply with quote  #14 

To fault Ivana for her tail..... now that would have been a true shame!


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Nicci
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steveoifer

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Reply with quote  #15 

How short was Moonshine's tail after the docking?

I don't believe a Rott like tail docking would be presentable, but I could be wrong!

 

Years ago, "any" trauma related shortening of the tail would have ended a mastiff's show career!


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For the betterment of the breed

"Above all, a uniform type should be aimed at by breeders and uniformity of type can only exist in a proportionate ratio in the purity and distinctiveness in any breed"!.........M. Moore
"If breeds did not adhere to a specific shape, form, and colour range, or if breeders disregarded this blueprint, the breed would degenerate to the point that it would hardly resemble the breed at all. Selective breeding does not just create breeds- it preserves them as well." Breeding purebred dogs inherently means accepting limitations on your freedom to just breed anything...Catherine McMillan
" A reinforced consolidation of the American and British standards could be the basis for restoring our breed to the gladiatorial glory of its ancient past, in capability if not in usage".....Norman Howard Carp-Gordon
"I can live with doubt, or not knowing, rather than to have answers that might be wrong"...Richard Feynman
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TamK

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Reply with quote  #16 
Never knew that about Ivana, but then she is so breathtaking her who would look at her tail? I did follow her around the ring once, but my heart was beating so fast I had to concentrate on remaining upright. That's when she took BOB at the Portland specialty and Mira took BOW, BBE and a AOM. ( like how I got that brag in?)
Moonshine's tail if I remember right is docked right below where you see in the picture. It was not just the tip.


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Tami
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nancyw

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Reply with quote  #17 

And you should brag!!  That was great!

 

Nancy


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steveoifer

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Reply with quote  #18 

From a prior thread under "Mastiff Standard" which was deleted.

 

steveoifer

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Edit | Delete
Old post 8/26/06 at 11:57 AM  

"There should be a reasonable, but not exaggerated, tuck-up."


"Tail: set on moderately high and reaching to the hocks or a little below. Wide at the root, tapering to the end, hanging straight in repose, forming a slight curve, but never over the back when the dog is in motion."

 

 

**Note the above wording from the AKC standard.

 

Look at the picture of Bredwardine's Beau Ideal in the historical thread and notice her "tuck-up", then look at the motion pictures of the Westminster show ( on the Westminster thread ) and view tail carriage.

 

Opinions are welcome!

 



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LazarusMastiffs

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Old post 8/26/06 at 05:37 PM  

Hi Steve.  I cannot view the video from this computer, but I am assuming that you saw some incorrect carriage of the tails in that video.  That does not surprise me.  That seems to be on area we have, as a breed, overlooked in more recent years.  That was certainly evident at Bucks County this year.  Tons of it to be honest.  I was not the only person there to notice it either.  I too have 2 dogs that carry it wrong.  It is a fault, but how severe it is is subjective.  I don't like it and try to avoid it, but I am working on other issues at the moment.  If I can correct them all at the same time it would be nice, but I have to prioritize.  The dogs I have with improper tail sets have too much to off not to breed.  So, I will breed them and know that it might pop up.  Eventually I will try to eliminate it though.  Chris


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goldleaf

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Old post Today at 07:08 AM  

This is Vegas - could you tell me how you view her tuck up and her tail set?
Thank you.

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Jann Lanz
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Old post Today at 07:14 AM  

Here's another one of Vegas

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Jann Lanz
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steveoifer

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Edit | Delete
Old post Today at 07:44 AM  

The tuck-up seems "reasonable" to my eye and as dogs mature, the tuck-up will come down even more.

 

Tail carriage " over the back " can be subject to interpretation. Does it imply curled over the back, or carried higher than a horizontal plane above the topline?

 

The standard needs to tighten up it's meanings on several fronts!


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For the betterment of the breed


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For the betterment of the breed

"Above all, a uniform type should be aimed at by breeders and uniformity of type can only exist in a proportionate ratio in the purity and distinctiveness in any breed"!.........M. Moore
"If breeds did not adhere to a specific shape, form, and colour range, or if breeders disregarded this blueprint, the breed would degenerate to the point that it would hardly resemble the breed at all. Selective breeding does not just create breeds- it preserves them as well." Breeding purebred dogs inherently means accepting limitations on your freedom to just breed anything...Catherine McMillan
" A reinforced consolidation of the American and British standards could be the basis for restoring our breed to the gladiatorial glory of its ancient past, in capability if not in usage".....Norman Howard Carp-Gordon
"I can live with doubt, or not knowing, rather than to have answers that might be wrong"...Richard Feynman
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steveoifer

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Reply with quote  #19 

Tamara,

 

I could perhaps be made to see things differently, about docking and showing!


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For the betterment of the breed

"Above all, a uniform type should be aimed at by breeders and uniformity of type can only exist in a proportionate ratio in the purity and distinctiveness in any breed"!.........M. Moore
"If breeds did not adhere to a specific shape, form, and colour range, or if breeders disregarded this blueprint, the breed would degenerate to the point that it would hardly resemble the breed at all. Selective breeding does not just create breeds- it preserves them as well." Breeding purebred dogs inherently means accepting limitations on your freedom to just breed anything...Catherine McMillan
" A reinforced consolidation of the American and British standards could be the basis for restoring our breed to the gladiatorial glory of its ancient past, in capability if not in usage".....Norman Howard Carp-Gordon
"I can live with doubt, or not knowing, rather than to have answers that might be wrong"...Richard Feynman
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steveoifer

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Reply with quote  #20 

Ch. Thunderhill's Abbess 30 years ago

 

With Happy Tail, which ended her career!



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For the betterment of the breed

"Above all, a uniform type should be aimed at by breeders and uniformity of type can only exist in a proportionate ratio in the purity and distinctiveness in any breed"!.........M. Moore
"If breeds did not adhere to a specific shape, form, and colour range, or if breeders disregarded this blueprint, the breed would degenerate to the point that it would hardly resemble the breed at all. Selective breeding does not just create breeds- it preserves them as well." Breeding purebred dogs inherently means accepting limitations on your freedom to just breed anything...Catherine McMillan
" A reinforced consolidation of the American and British standards could be the basis for restoring our breed to the gladiatorial glory of its ancient past, in capability if not in usage".....Norman Howard Carp-Gordon
"I can live with doubt, or not knowing, rather than to have answers that might be wrong"...Richard Feynman
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steveoifer

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Reply with quote  #21 

Some solutions to prevent "happy tail"...............

 

Carpet ALL sharp edged walls.

 

Chain link, should have a smooth perimeter bordering tail height areas.

 

Eliminate or protect any object in rooms, which could have negative consequences, if a tail were to smack into it.

 

Remember, in nature, there aren't many sharp objects. A house built for humans is not always mastiff friendly!

 


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For the betterment of the breed

"Above all, a uniform type should be aimed at by breeders and uniformity of type can only exist in a proportionate ratio in the purity and distinctiveness in any breed"!.........M. Moore
"If breeds did not adhere to a specific shape, form, and colour range, or if breeders disregarded this blueprint, the breed would degenerate to the point that it would hardly resemble the breed at all. Selective breeding does not just create breeds- it preserves them as well." Breeding purebred dogs inherently means accepting limitations on your freedom to just breed anything...Catherine McMillan
" A reinforced consolidation of the American and British standards could be the basis for restoring our breed to the gladiatorial glory of its ancient past, in capability if not in usage".....Norman Howard Carp-Gordon
"I can live with doubt, or not knowing, rather than to have answers that might be wrong"...Richard Feynman
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madchemist

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Reply with quote  #22 

Tail Carriage

Is this correct?

 

I dont have a picture so youll have to visualize.  When the dog is trotting/running the half of the tail that is closest to the body (base) is stuck out behind the dog at an angle slightly lower than parrelel. The lower half/bottom half is curled into a small radiused curve and the tip of the tail touchs about at the base of the dog's tail.  A horizontal teardop if you will.

 

The tail tapers from the base to the tip, hangs straight in repose, and hangs to the hocks.

 

Is this an acceptable tail carriage?

 

Thanks


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steveoifer

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Reply with quote  #23 

"Tail: set on moderately high and reaching to the hocks or a little below. Wide at the root, tapering to the end, hanging straight in repose, forming a slight curve, but never over the back when the dog is in motion."


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For the betterment of the breed

"Above all, a uniform type should be aimed at by breeders and uniformity of type can only exist in a proportionate ratio in the purity and distinctiveness in any breed"!.........M. Moore
"If breeds did not adhere to a specific shape, form, and colour range, or if breeders disregarded this blueprint, the breed would degenerate to the point that it would hardly resemble the breed at all. Selective breeding does not just create breeds- it preserves them as well." Breeding purebred dogs inherently means accepting limitations on your freedom to just breed anything...Catherine McMillan
" A reinforced consolidation of the American and British standards could be the basis for restoring our breed to the gladiatorial glory of its ancient past, in capability if not in usage".....Norman Howard Carp-Gordon
"I can live with doubt, or not knowing, rather than to have answers that might be wrong"...Richard Feynman
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madchemist

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Reply with quote  #24 

Maybe my world class drawing will help.



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Clinton Shuey
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steveoifer

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Reply with quote  #25 

I'm not schooled in hieroglyphics!


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For the betterment of the breed

"Above all, a uniform type should be aimed at by breeders and uniformity of type can only exist in a proportionate ratio in the purity and distinctiveness in any breed"!.........M. Moore
"If breeds did not adhere to a specific shape, form, and colour range, or if breeders disregarded this blueprint, the breed would degenerate to the point that it would hardly resemble the breed at all. Selective breeding does not just create breeds- it preserves them as well." Breeding purebred dogs inherently means accepting limitations on your freedom to just breed anything...Catherine McMillan
" A reinforced consolidation of the American and British standards could be the basis for restoring our breed to the gladiatorial glory of its ancient past, in capability if not in usage".....Norman Howard Carp-Gordon
"I can live with doubt, or not knowing, rather than to have answers that might be wrong"...Richard Feynman
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