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Pedigrees - NZ/AU Show Lines in ABCA?


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#41 Katelynn & Gang

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Posted 21 September 2006 - 04:44 PM

Originally posted by Columbia MO:
How does "engaging in conformation" cut out herding genetics? I finished Savvy's conformation championship at 16 months old after about five weekends of showing. His entire conformation career consisted of a total of about 20 minutes of standing or gaiting around a ring and maybe an hour of training. At the same time, he has spent hundreds of hours working stock. I'm not quite sure how the 80 min. he spent "engaging in conformation" somehow ruined his ability to herd sheep.

I am positive showing him in conformation is not taking away any working ability he has.

What I am positive of is that ?Your dog has good tail carriage, mine has great ear carriage, lets breed Champion puppies!? is what will. You are not guilty of it, your dogs are altered. But just think of how many people are because the conformation ring is open to this breed? Yes, I am sure temperament is in there when breeding show dogs but just as you said, your dog is from a line of at least four generations that have never in their lives seen livestock. Not testing what you are breeding (testing a Border Collie for breeding is done by working it on livestock) is a set up for disaster.

What makes a Border Collie a Border Collie? Its ability to work! If you aren?t testing it, no matter what its pedigree says, is it a ?Border Collie? worth breeding? Or is it a Border Collie at all? I may be from royal blood in the United Kingdom but that doesn?t make me royalty, no matter what my family tree says.

Originally posted by Columbia MO:
The CL gene is HIGHLY unlikely to have been a mutation that just suddenly popped up in the past 20 years. This gene is virtually certain to have been in the BC gene pool since before the breed even had a name.

The gene was only discovered because the original gene pool from the conformation lines in Australia began with a limited number of ISDS dogs. Therefore, each pair of dogs that were bred were likely to have at least one of the same ancestors in the pedigree. All it would take is one "bad ancestor" from the ISDS to introduce CL.

The "conformation progenitor" dog that introduced CL to Aussie/NZ lines is almost certain to have working littermates that stayed behind in the UK and introduced the CL gene into working lines of the ABCA and ISDS.

We all know that to get a ?certain? look, heavy inbreeding is involved, even more so to lock that look in and keep it. With inbreeding comes serious mutations that wouldn?t be there otherwise. It is very possible that CL is a mutation that came with inbreeding these dogs in AU and NZ for conformation. Unless these dogs from this severe (as you said, it was a limited amount of ISDS dogs that were used) inbreeding were introduced back into the ABCA or ISDS, it is possible that is only exists in these AU and NZ show lines that are testing as carries.

Katelynn
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#42 Maralynn

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Posted 21 September 2006 - 05:58 PM

How does "engaging in conformation" cut out herding genetics?

I wasn't refering to you specificaly. Rather, the idea that just because a dog is found to have good structure by way of the conformation ring that the ABCA de-registers it. It's the conformation mindset, that the breed has to look a certain way, that they want to stay away from (look what it has done to many other working breeds). To that end, they have put in place that rule.

As for conformation cutting out herding genetics, I recently saw a purebred BC who probably weighed 25# and looked closer to a terrier in build, then what BCs commonly look like. But she could work! Breeding toward the ideal AKC look would disgreguard her ability to work, and say she was not breed worthy, simply because she doesn't meet appearance standards . Not because she's not sound in body or temperment.

That's what I was trying to get at
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#43 Smokjbc

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 04:08 AM

quote:
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I like the ROM program and plan to ROM my rescue dog when he is old enough and would have eventually tried to ROM Savvy if not for his championship. >>>

Is your rescue dog intact? I'm just curious because my understanding of the ABCA ROM program is that it is to bring in dogs, who for whatever reason are not registered or eligible for registry, who would contribute superior working ability to working dog genetics. I am assuming a rescued dog would be neutered, but you know what they say about assumptions . I just don't see the point in trying to ROM a neutered dog, and I am surprised if the ROM committee would spend the time to do so.

#44 Denise Wall

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 04:58 AM

I would like to address a few things being discussed in this thread.

First, the mutation that causes CL is like a zillion similar mutations in animals, humans included. These mutations are almost always recessive, meaning two genes are needed for the individual to have the disease. If an individual inherits only one copy of the mutated gene, they are a carrier but not affected. The long held theory is that we are all carrying at least two to four deleterious mutations. Most of the time, no affected individuals result because two copies of a particular mutated gene don't find each other in the same individual. Inbreeding, such as is common in show breeding, changes those odds drastically. Hence, a rare mutation like CL shows up as affected individuals in the showdog community and not, or more rarely, in the working community.

The mutation that produces CL in the individuals who are unfortunate enough to have two of these genes could have arisen as a spontaneous mutation in an individual exported to Australia, meaning the mutation began in that individual, or it could have been a rare mutation already present in the border collie population in the UK, but with affected individuals not found there because of the low inbreeding coefficients in that population. No matter which, my point is it doesn't really matter whether or not the UK sheepdog population "originally" provided the mutation. There are many mutations like that out there, probably even other different mutations that can cause CL. It is the practices of the showdog community that caused this particular mutation to produce affected dogs and become different from the many, many other similar rare mutations spread throughout the breed.

If we were to have tests for all the deleterious mutations like we now have a test for CL, at least a few carriers would be likely be found for many of them in the border collie population. At what point do we decide our dogs need to be tested for any particular mutation? For me, it would depend on the degree of inbreeding I was doing and the lines I was using. Simply avoiding inbreeding markedly improves your odds of not having some weirdo mutation produce affected individuals as has happened with the CL mutation.

In the future, as more of these mutations are found and tests developed, people will need to become more sophisticated in their understanding of the numbers of these mutations and the odds of their dogs having them. Right now, people over-react to ones they know about, not realizing they are only seeing the tip of the iceberg.

At this point, with the stats we've seen, I, personally, see no reason to test the general working border collie population for CL. Maybe if you somehow had breeding from the known carriers, but not in general. I'm sure there are a few with the mutation out there, just as there are a few or more with other worse mutations. Just because we know about this one doesn't make it more important than the ones we don't know about. The best general defense is reasonable breeding strategies.


Second, I was on the ABCA Board of Directors when we voted to de-register conformation champions and not allow ROM. For the record, when we first discussed it, I was very opposed to not allowing ROM eligibility for these de-registered dogs. Thinking, if the dog can work to the ROM standard, it shouldn't matter if it's a conformation champion. After studying this situation extensively and reflecting on the consequences more, I changed my mind. There were several lines of reasoning involved for my turn around but for this discussion only one is pertinent. This rule is not really about the individual and whether this particular dog can work. It's about the breeding path that has been chosen for this dog. (Not your dog MO since it is neutered but in general.) Obviously, if one is pursuing a conformation championship with a dog, the breeding path for this dog will almost certainly not be selecting exclusively to a work standard.

You can say all you want that BYBs and puppy mills don't test their dogs. I hate this too, believe me. But show breeding tends to select *against* working traits. BYB and PMs, while maybe not as actively selecting *for* working traits, are not selecting *against* them in a focused way.

And as for a working test for ABCA registration, it's not practical.

Like someone else asked, MO, why are you interested in registering with ABCA anyway?

Denise

#45 Columbia MO

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 05:04 AM

Originally posted by Smokjbc:
Is your rescue dog intact? I just don't see the point in trying to ROM a neutered dog, and I am surprised if the ROM committee would spend the time to do so.

Yes, he is still intact. He is just 16 months old, and I believe the ideal age to neuter a performance dog is 18 months, whether he will be bred or not.

This dog was bought from a puppy mill auction house after a bunch of BCs were taken from a Missouri breeder that was breeding ABCA-registered dogs. My dog's parents were both ABCA-registered and had been bought by the puppy miller from working farms.

After getting the dog, I obtained his 6 generation pedigree and have spoken with the owners of all four grandparents to learn about his genetic heritage. My herding instructor bred/owned/handled his great-grandfather, who was #1 on cattle in the MSSDA rankings, and other dogs in his pedigree were successful Open dogs.

My dog looks and acts identically to my instructor's dog in every way and is an amazing stockdog on both sheep and cattle. Kathy Knox met him at a clinic at 8 mos. old and loved him. Here is a photo of him stylin':
Posted Image

Not that his "looks" mean anything, heaven forbid (!), but this will give you some idea of his nice eye. He is currently in training for Nursery trials next spring.

To pass the ROM, he has to pass OFA and CERF tests, in addition to the working test. At his age, I have no idea if I would ever breed him, but I would like to keep the option open by registering him through the ROM program.

Columbia, MO

#46 cgt

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 05:08 AM

Hi Denise!

Thank you for that lucid explanation.

I have questions. Some of these I may have asked before in one form or another. Either the answers did not satisfy me, or I am having senior moments - I just can't recall. In any case, the questions are certainly a little naive and expose my ignorance. That's ok. They are also maybe a little inflammatory, I don't know.
But I hope so.

Unless I am going to breed my dogs, why should I register (with ABCA or anyone else)? All I can think of is when my neutered dog wins the Nationals people will want to know his pedigree. Is that the idea? Or what? And if there is no compelling reason, why do we have to be ABCA members to run in the Nationals? (Hmmm... does our dog in fact have to be ABCA registered to run in the Nationals?) Is it because ABCA gives money to sponsor them?

People always seem to act as if registration has Intrinsic Goodness.
I don't get it.
Maybe it's just obvious to people with common sense, which excludes me, I'm afraid.

(Sorry for this thread digression. It's pretty much
inevitable here on the internet. So what the heck.)

charlie

#47 Firchow

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 05:50 AM

Hi Charlie.

As you probably know I'm not Denise, But I'll take a stab at your questions and I'm sure if my facts or logic are incorrect will be gently corrected:

"Unless I am going to breed my dogs, why should I register (with ABCA or anyone else)?"
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The only reason I've ever come up with is that there are certain prize monies contributed directly by the ABCA (aside from the grant to the USBCHA) at the NF that would be unavailable to an unregistered dog. So if my Kim would ever happen to place in those monies (work with me here and use your imagination...), we'd not get the check because she's unregistered.

**********************************
".....why do we have to be ABCA members to run in the Nationals? Is it because they give money to sponsor them?"
---------------------------
I think that's the reason, but there may be more to it.


Glenn "terminal velocity theorist" Firchow
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#48 Katelynn & Gang

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 05:51 AM

Isn't your "rescue" dog from the dogs that they auctioned off from "Awesome Border Collies?"
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#49 cgt

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 05:56 AM

Howdy, Glenn Who Is Not Denise.

So, in a nutshell, the keyword is "extortion"?

Yikes!
I'm going to get it now.

Still, providing entertainment to you, Glenn, is the least I can do after the high calibre entertainment you provided me at Woodbury's. (Clever, eh?)

charlie

#50 Pipedream Farm

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 05:59 AM

Glenn, shouldn't you be: "terminal velocity practitioner" or "terminal velocity experimentalist" instead of "terminal velocity theorist"?

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#51 cgt

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 06:00 AM

Hey Mark!
Why are you fooling around on the internet and not, like, on the road by now?

#52 Pipedream Farm

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 06:01 AM

Charlie,

It's more like the lottery; you have to pay in order to win the prize.

Mark
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#53 Firchow

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 06:15 AM

Originally posted by Pipedream Farm:
Glenn, shouldn't you be: "terminal velocity practitioner" or "terminal velocity experimentalist" instead of "terminal velocity theorist"?

No, it was theory. I argued to the esteemed Professor Torre that terminal velocity with regard to the Earth's gravity is actually a matter of constant deceleration given that as air pressure increases, so does drag, resulting in T.V. constantly changing.

This question came about as a result of the Professor asking some arcane question about ballistics.

Ultimately, he threw up his arms and agreed with me but that may have been solely because I had the beer.

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#54 Columbia MO

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 06:15 AM

Originally posted by Denise Wall:
Inbreeding, such as is common in show breeding, changes those odds drastically. Hence, a rare mutation like CL shows up as affected individuals in the showdog community and not, or more rarely, in the working community.

Denise,

Thanks for your great post, and I especially appreciated that you explained your thought processes for keeping conformation ch. out of the ROM process. (I disagree, but I see your point of view).

The only part I disagree with is the quote above. I'm not sure about the early development of the conformation BCs in Australia/NZ. However, in the current lines, I see a lot more inbreeding going on in ISDS/ABCA working dogs than in conformation dogs.

As an example, the MOST used AKC Border Collie stud dog of all time is my dog's sire, Borderfame Choc Chill. The BCSA website was down a few minutes ago so I can't check for sure, but I believe he has sired about 10-12 litters, representing about 50-70 puppies. This is a massive amount for an AKC BC, and as I mentioned, he holds the record. It is much more common for a conformation champion dog to have a lifetime 3-5 litters, if in fact he is used at all.

At the same time, the ISDS used to list their "most used sires" on their site (I can't track down that list at the moment either--they've moved it). As I recall, there were several well known Internationals winners that produced over 100 litters and over 500 puppies each. This is how dogs like Wiston Cap and Wisp end up in pretty much every BC pedigree... even the AKC conformation dogs.

Show dogs may be inbred to standardize the looks. However, competition stockdogs are equally inbred (or heavily line bred) on big international winners. They may not be all alike in external appearance, but their "alikeness" is in their working abilities.

Furthermore, the majority of BCs bred throughout history are from farmers who are likely to inbreed dogs simply because they are using a small breeding population located within 10 miles of where they live and are likely to be breeding to a close relative of their own dog.

I do not believe that any perceived difference in the two lines of dogs is due to the degree of inbreeding. Both populations are inbred, as are any purebred dogs.

I feel it was simply the luck of the draw that Aus/NZ-lines conformation BCs ended up with the CL gene being expressed first. (I'm not convinced the gene is absent in working populations).

And regarding epilepsy, that was similarly the luck of the draw (or maybe inbreeding on an international winner?) that it wound up mainly in the working BC population. Epilepsy is almost never mentioned on these BC Boards, but 16% of all BCs in the USA have been diagnosed with it--BCs are the #1 breed in the country for epilepsy. And note that working lines dogs here outnumber conformation-lines dogs by over 100:1.

And there is a whole line of BCs living near me that have hypoglycemic seizures at cattle trials anytime they get excited or get kicked. The owner gives them some corn syrup and they're "as good as new." Nobody but me seems to see this as any kind of issue. These dogs are routinely bred from and the puppies are purchased by stockdog trial people in this area.

Anyway, I just wanted to voice my opinion that I am totally for 100% outcrossing or VERY light linebreeding in any line of BCs. I would personally like to see all stud dogs on earth limited to producing 10 litters per lifetime. However, I do not think that genetic problems like CL are uniquely caused by breeding for conformation, but are found in any lines that are routinely inbred or heavily linebred.

Columbia, MO

#55 cgt

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 06:17 AM

Originally posted by Firchow:

Ultimately, he threw up his arms and agreed with me but that may have been solely because I had the beer.

Glenn: You had the beer AND the guns.

#56 Denise Wall

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 06:26 AM

Charlie,

Breeding aside, depending on one's goals, I don't know why people would register any dog with any registry.

My guess about the ABCA membership requirement for the finals would be that is is like many other competitions venues I have been involved with -- certain memberships are required to participate. ABCA does shoulder the bulk of the expenses for the finals, I think.

Denise (a mere shadow of her former self)
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#57 cgt

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 06:28 AM

Thank you Denise.

What's the problem with your shadow?

#58 Pipedream Farm

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 06:34 AM

[quote]Originally posted by Firchow:
quote:
Originally posted by Pipedream Farm:
Glenn, shouldn't you be: "terminal velocity practitioner" or "terminal velocity experimentalist" instead of "terminal velocity theorist"?[/quote]No, it was theory. I argued to the esteemed Professor Torre that terminal velocity with regard to the Earth's gravity is actually a matter of constant deceleration given that as air pressure increases, so does drag, resulting in T.V. constantly changing.

This question came about as a result of the Professor asking some arcane question about ballistics.

Ultimately, he threw up his arms and agreed with me but that may have been solely because I had the beer.

Glenn[/QUOTE]Since velocity is a vector and in ballistics the vector is always changing due to gravity, of course you'll have deceleration. But I doubt it would be a constant; I'd expect deceleration to be constantly changing.

Mark
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#59 cgt

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 06:41 AM

Ok, ok.

The nerd-factor is starting to rise dramatically.

Unless someone can come up with some beer, I'm out of here.

#60 Denise Wall

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Posted 22 September 2006 - 06:44 AM

I'm not sure about the early development of the conformation BCs in Australia/NZ. However, in the current lines, I see a lot more inbreeding going on in ISDS/ABCA working dogs than in conformation dogs.

As an example, the MOST used AKC Border Collie stud dog of all time is my dog's sire, Borderfame Choc Chill. The BCSA website was down a few minutes ago so I can't check for sure, but I believe he has sired about 10-12 litters, representing about 50-70 puppies. This is a massive amount for an AKC BC, and as I mentioned, he holds the record. It is much more common for a conformation champion dog to have a lifetime 3-5 litters, if in fact he is used at all.

At the same time, the ISDS used to list their "most used sires" on their site (I can't track down that list at the moment either--they've moved it). As I recall, there were several well known Internationals winners that produced over 100 litters and over 500 puppies each. This is how dogs like Wiston Cap and Wisp end up in pretty much every BC pedigree... even the AKC conformation dogs.

You are comparing the number of litters for a small gene pool, the show border collies, to the number of litters for an exponentially larger gene pool, the working border collie. You cannot extrapolate meaningful information without correcting for the total number of dogs in each group.

That ISDS dogs are not heavily inbred is not my personal opinion. Since the beginning of the breed being registered with ISDS, there is a documented over all COI of ~ 7.8. Someone actually entered in the entire ISDS studbook and calculated it. It's the lowest known COI for any purebred breed of dog.

Your impressions seem to come mostly from your own personal experience and observations. I think if you had all of the information on both sectors, the show dog population vs the working dog population, you would come to drastically different conclusions regarding which group is the most inbred.

I would love to know where you're getting those figures for epilepsy. I've been working on epilepsy in the border collie for a decade and the information you're relating is totally foreign to me.

It's a known problem in border collies, as it is in many breeds and breed mixes. We on the ABCA Health and Genetics Committee are working on this problem as the highest priority.

Denise
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