|10-16-2013 01:27 PM|
|Liesje||I think both. There is an older couple local to me that breeds GSDs. I don't really like their lines/type, but as far as knowledge of *breeding* goes, they are well known and respected by the local GSD club. Their methods are more "old school" - put the male and female in a yard and let them breed. However that is limited to actual breeding/tying, they aren't left together for weeks on end nor is the female left alone outside or in a kennel or shed to whelp. I think Catu is right that GSDs as a breed don't really thrive that way. Mine live in the house as do most that I know, even people who train at a higher level and breed. So I would have no reason to put a female out in the yard to breed and leave her out there until the puppies were weaned. That would have nothing to do with her health or vitality or whether she were breeding quality. My dogs are my companions and my GSD is a very loyal protector of myself and my property. It would be pointless to keep them outside, how does that help me or allow them to do their jobs? Even a pregnant female can train and work with limitations and doesn't need to be segregated.|
|10-16-2013 12:16 PM|
You think it's a beagle or pack dog thing? I don't know, I think in my area, this method of breeding is more common with the older generation, regardless of the breed. The gentleman that actually convinced me to breed, used a similar method with his GSD's and BC's. The only major difference is, he was more active in the actual labor and birthing part, but not really up to that point.
Maybe it's an area thing.
|10-14-2013 05:12 PM|
As you mentioned, I think it has more to do with being Beagles, that said pack hunting dogs, than with being "back in the day".
I can picture some breeders I know that work with hunting dogs doing what you describe today, but from what I've read and talked to it is harder for me to imagine a breeder from a shepherd/working breed being left to breed with the male for months with little to no human interaction, even in the days of of von Stephanitz.
But I don't belong to a family of breeders nor I've lived long enough myself...
|10-14-2013 04:03 PM|
|Liesje||I agree, if I described some of the things one of my mentors has described, people here would probably choke on their snacks! But yet she has awesome dogs, she knows more about the, uh, mechanics of breeding dogs than I could ever learn because she grew up around it before breeding dogs herself. I think she told me her stud dog has never sired a litter less than 10 puppies so obviously she is doing something right!|
|10-14-2013 02:31 PM|
He did own the males and females he bred; occasionally would breed his males to outside bitches, using the same method. Of course, these were hunting dogs. They weren't overly attached to their owners/handlers, and definitely were not house dogs.
I don't ever recall him losing a bitch during the whelping process, or having any issue that would dictate veterinary assistance.... but I was sheltered from a lot of the non-pleasancies during my early childhood years, so it's possible things happened that I'm not aware of.
My first litter of GSD's, Paw offered a lot of guidance and supervision, and even being 28-29 years old, having a degree in Verterinary Technology, having worked at various kennels, been involved in training, and having worked with dogs my entire life... his knowledge was unbelievable to me, he amazed me.
I firmly believe our older dog people are the most valuable resource we have, in today's modern world.
|10-14-2013 01:00 PM|
|Liesje||I think the advantage of that setup is that it sounds like your Paw owned the male AND the female? I'm all for as little intervention as possible, but at the same time I'm not willing to accept a bitch I don't know into my yard and just leave her out their with my dog for an indefinite period of time. I had one experience with a bitch I didn't know left at my house to be bred and will NEVER do it again unless I already know the bitch and the owners very well. She was extremely uncooperative for breeding without her owners around and was not receptive (that's putting it lightly) to the help I had on hand (a couple who has assisted breeding dozens of GSD litters). On the flip side, we also had a friend come over with her bitch and were able to just turn the dogs loose, let them tell us when her bitch was ready, and get the deed done while we chatted and supervised. If I were breeding dogs that I owned and knew, I'd probably be more hands off (though not quite what you describe since my dogs are already house dogs so I wouldn't turn them out to be bred and whelp).|
|10-14-2013 12:33 PM|
Breeding... back in the day.
My grandfather raised beagles and coonhounds when I was a child.
I remember my grandpa having a smaller "dog lot" next to the bigger ones that housed his pack (one for boys, one for girls), and when he figured it was about time for a bitch to come in, he'd move her and the selected stud to the smaller lot. There, they'd stay together, day and night for about a month, until he was sure she'd come in, they'd bred, and she was expecting. Then he'd take the male out, and leave the bitch in there until she had the pups and they were weaned. There was rarely any vet visits, no special treatment, no temperature taking, no palpating, no monitoring for signs of labor. When he saw she was in labor, he'd check on her periodically to make sure things were progressing, but was a firm believer the dogs did better with little human interferance. And once the pups were weaned, she was added back to the pack.
Being a breeder myself, some 25 years later, I find it very interesting the differences in breeding "back in the day" and breeding today.
Like with most things, the whole process has changed, enhanced, become more complicated with the dog's best interest in mind.
I don't believe my modern day practices are necessarily better than those my grandfather practiced.... just different, taking into account that my dogs aren't "just dogs" to me, like his were to him and most people during his day. We know more today, have better access to things to make sure our dogs stay safe and healthy... and it's more acceptable to be overly cautious, I think.
Oh well, that was my random "back in the day" thought of today. I'm sure Paw is looking down at me from Heaven, rolling his eyes, as I gush and fuss over my girls, but I doubt he's surprised. He always said I was too soft-hearted.