Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Central Virginia
This question might confuse people without a definition of "genetic obedience." I think it might more commonly be described as "biddability."
I think of it as the difference between my GSDs and my Jack Russell Terriers... My terrier truly doesn't get the concept of obeying just because I asked for something. What's more, there is virtually no obedience in drive without extensive training to reinforce and create it.
So, I think it comes down to those elements that make a dog a "herding" dog (or a sporting dog, for some breeds). In order for a dog to be a herding dog, it has to have enough drive and interest to work livestock, but enough sense of teamwork to work with the shepherd/handler, enough self-control to delay (perpetually) the kill portion of the prey/herding behavior. And then it has to have the smarts to understand the fairly complex behaviors being requested by the leader of the hunt/shepherd.
So, what I think of as biddability or genetic obedience is part pack-drive, part human awareness and desire to have an engaged relationship with a human, part intelligence, part ability to "cap" or harness drive and think in drive, part sensitivity to the handler combined with the desire to be "right" or to please. So, I believe, it is a complex interaction of drives, temperament, socialization/experience, personality, intelligence, and environmental awareness.
Perhaps because it is not just a simple thing (not just a single drive like "prey drive") and because there is a good element of learning/experience in its manifestation (a dog can have all the traits for genetic obedience, but if he isn't raised in a situation to form a relationship with a handler, it will never manifest), I don't think it's as simple to look for bloodlines or even dogs that regularly pass "genetic obedience" down.
In a way, it's easier to name individual dogs that have this trait than those that will pass it on to their progeny. One thing to bear in mind is that a dog who is *too* biddable actually is handicapped in schutzhund or all protection training. (And schutzhund is relevant because success in that sport vastly dominates what working-line GSDs have been commonly bred and are most commonly found.)
So, the dogs that had good biddability had to also have great strengths elsewhere--high drives, calm nerves, good physical hardness, etc.--so it doesn't always stand out as their most outstanding feature when one is looking at the dog in a pedigree or in person.
But, here are a few names of dogs that I think contribute toward biddability in their progeny:
Ilya Schwarzenzwinger (behind a lot of Wolfendobel and Fasanerie and some Maineiche dogs, as well as some Schiffshlache)
Haus Knufken (*old* herding lines)
old Kirschental (also old herding lines)
It seems from descriptions of Aly Vordsteinerwald progeny that he might put some of this in there--probably largely from Askia v Froschgraben and his motherline?
I might guess that you get this somewhat from Harro progeny (see Askia) or from Afra Stoppenburger Land (mother of Fado Karthago and other great dogs).
A common element behind a lot of the dogs I can think of is Mutz vd Peltzierfarm--but you have to look back past the 5th or 6th generation.
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