Breeding advice and help

All topics pertaining to mating and whelping, as well as upcoming / planned litters.
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Emielle
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Breeding advice and help

Post by Emielle » Sat Sep 18, 2010 7:57 pm

I'm only a young'in for now, but around ten years from now I'd love to breed dogs, namely Tamaskans [Is the plural even Tamaskans? I've mostly seen Tamaskan as the plural and singuar. Dx] Thing is, I have no clue what breeding involves and how it's done - other than the common-sense or well-known basics. I plan on becoming a vet though, and have done for eight years now, so that should help quite a bit with things. But basically, I have a few questions.

How did all the breeders on here get into breeding dogs, and where did you get all the advice and help you needed?
How did you choose potential pairings, and weed out ones that weren't best?
Did you set out to get a Tamaskan knowing you would breed from him/her?
What do you need to have or know before breeding from your dog?

I realise some of those may be very silly questions, but bear with me. Hopefully I'll be able to learn and remember all of your tips for the future! Help/advice on other aspects would be great to, since this could be a sort of reference topic for others who might want to breed.

Thanks.
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blufawn
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Re: Breeding advice and help

Post by blufawn » Sat Sep 18, 2010 8:10 pm

The plural is Tamaskan, not Tamaskans.

I can't really answer the how did you get into breeding question as I was born for it or the how do you weed out the worst, being involved with dogs since birth has given me the 'stockmans' eye I guess.

I would suggest you buy the foundation dogs booklet to learn more about why the original foundation dogs were chosen, this may help you when looking for your own.

You could also study the TDR's pictorial standard http://www.tamaskan-dog.com/The%20Stand ... andard.htm

Before you breed I suggest you read up on the birthing process, you could buy the Tamaskan Survival Guide or better still The Book of the Bitch, available from amazon.com
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Sylvaen
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Re: Breeding advice and help

Post by Sylvaen » Wed Dec 01, 2010 3:00 am

blufawn wrote:The plural is Tamaskan, not Tamaskans.
Even though it's incorrect, I do use "Tamaskans" some of the time and Tamaskan Dogs / Tamaskan at other times... it all depends on the context... I guess it's a habit but "2 Tamaskans" does have a nice ring to it. I suppose, in my mind, since the Tamaskan is an Arctic Breed, I tend to pluralize it like the other Arctic Breeds: huskies, malamutes, samoyeds, etc.
Emielle wrote:How did all the breeders on here get into breeding dogs, and where did you get all the advice and help you needed? Did you set out to get a Tamaskan knowing you would breed from him/her?
I wasn't exactly planning to become a breeder right from the start... but I did want a breeding-quality male that COULD be used for breeding at some point in the future - I guess I got involved in the beginning by planning to potentially become a "Stud Dog Owner" - however, once I actually owned the breed, I fell in love completely and knew I also wanted a female, which happened around 8 months after I got my male.

I got lots of great advice from Lynn (Blustag) as well as from the internet - there is a wealth of information that isn't too hard to find and various websites that are devoted to breeding (and doing it properly / successfully). And, if in doubt or desire of other's opinions, it's really easy to post here for advice (we do have a private Breeders Section here on the forum for that very purpose). ;)
Emielle wrote:How did you choose potential pairings, and weed out ones that weren't best?
The best place to start is by examining and comparing pedigrees... since many bloodlines are somewhat closely related, it's possible to look at previous matings (and the resulting offspring) to see if the combination you had in mind would be a good match. For instance, when I was first planning to breed Vixen, I wanted to breed her with Denver (to get pups with longer coats, since Vixen has quite a short coat) - however, Vixen's brother and Denver's sister had been mated in America, which resulted in a litter with many health issues. So I completely scratched that idea.

Once you are familiar with the bloodlines, and which dogs are related (and to what degree) you can begin to look at the COI (Coefficient Of Inbreeding) to see if the litter will be genetically viable - not too closely related. In other words, are you out-crossing, line-breeding, or in-breeding? You have to look at the WHOLE bloodline (at least 4-5 generations, ideally 6-8) to see what other dogs appear in the ancestry and if any of them appear more than once or twice... the best thing to look for is the number of "Common Ancestors" in a particular bloodline.

However, just because the pups are not genetically linked in one or two generations (sharing a common grand-sire for instance) doesn't mean that a particular bloodline hasn't been very closely line-breed for many generations before that... Mating two seemingly-unrelated dogs, which actually have tightly line-breed grandparents / aunts & uncles, etc usually results in a much higher COI over the space of several generations. In other words, they are more closely related (on paper) than you would expect... but for that you really have to take a good look at the pedigrees.

Once you've worked out the COI of various combinations, then you can start looking at other traits: size, height, weight, coat-length, color, ear-size, eye-color, etc to determine what YOU want to produce and what would be the best match for YOUR breeding dog, in order to produce these results. For this you also need to look at the ancestry, to see what other traits are carried and what you could expect from a particular bloodline (not accounting for recessive genes that might pop up by surprise). You're looking for a complementary match - one that offsets the best features of both parents to produce better results in the offspring (which, of course, is the whole point of breeding). So, if one dog has big ears and long fur, you'd want to match it with one that has small ears and short fur, to create pups with medium ears and medium coat. If a dog has a super curly tail, you'd never want to breed it with another dog that has a curly tail, otherwise all the pups will have curly tails. Keep in mind that each individual parent has two alleles of each gene and that one allele is randomly inherited from each parent (factoring in dominant and recessive, which will influence the outcome). In several generations you can "breed out" the bad traits but you have to have a good eye and know what to look for. As Jennie already said, the Foundation Dogs booklet is invaluable to breeders, so you can see what the ancestor dogs looked like, and what traits are carried in particular bloodlines.

This page also has some good "beginner info" about Breeding Myths, which you might find interesting and helpful:
http://www.bulldoginformation.com/breeding-myths.html
Emielle wrote:What do you need to have or know before breeding from your dog?
As Jennie also already said, the Book of the Bitch is a fantastic book that will teach you EVERYTHING you need to know about the whole pregnancy, whelping, birthing, weaning process - from start to finish - with lots of good advice. However, before you actually breed your dog, you MUST do all the required health tests, to make certain that your dog even IS of breeding quality or to make better breeding decisions. For instance, if your dog is a carrier of DM, you don't want to breed it with another carrier! Vital health tests include: Hip Scoring (by an official organization) and DM (degenerative myelopathy - cheek DNA swab).

You also have to get your dog DNA profiled before breeding. ;)
Emielle wrote:I realise some of those may be very silly questions, but bear with me. Hopefully I'll be able to learn and remember all of your tips for the future! Help/advice on other aspects would be great to, since this could be a sort of reference topic for others who might want to breed.
These are great questions and hopefully others will find this topic helpful / useful too.
I'm curious to hear other's opinions / advice on the subject. :)
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SpiritEcho
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Re: Breeding advice and help

Post by SpiritEcho » Wed Dec 01, 2010 11:15 am

hey cheers that just answered one of my questions

but I have another, what software do you recommend (if you do use kennel / breeders software)
Dogs are a gift most people don't deserve ^..^

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Sylvaen
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Re: Breeding advice and help

Post by Sylvaen » Thu Dec 02, 2010 4:26 am

I currently use Premier Pedigree Software by Tenset :)

There's a free trail version of all their products, which I highly recommend:

"Pedigree Assistant for Dogs" & "Breeders Assistant for Dogs":
http://www.tenset.co.uk/downloaddemo.html

They also have a fast COI Calculation software program:
http://www.tenset.co.uk/fspeed/fspeed.html
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Re: Breeding advice and help

Post by SpiritEcho » Thu Dec 02, 2010 4:49 am

Thank you Sylvaen :)

I would like to have everything ready and be well prepared before registering as a breeder.
I have books on genetics, so I can understand the bio-mechanical side a little better, then the easy part getting a Tam, I want to be very careful with this as I don't have good financial fallback so I have to be as precise as possible. I'm not planing on using my dog as an income, but breeding a line for the interest of assisting to establish a new breed and hopefully use them for trialing yes that is what I want.
Dogs are a gift most people don't deserve ^..^

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