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#21 Firchow

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Posted 28 January 2006 - 02:20 PM

Originally posted by IronHorse:
If the dog is registered properly then it is in fact a Border Collie even though it might be concidered a "barbie" by some.

Wrong. A Border Collie is a concept, not a breed.

Here is an interesting article about "Alaskan Huskies" - a breed that exists only in concept. As you're reading it, replace the dogs and the work described with Border Collies and the work they do and perhaps you'll gain a greater understanding of why a registry or a look have nothing to do with the argument.

The article is long, but it is a worthwhile read.

http://www.cabelasid...nyan_husky.html
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#22 Rebecca, Irena Farm

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Posted 28 January 2006 - 02:43 PM

Yes, there are many Border collies who are in fact Border collies (who work to a high standard), who are NOT registered, so you can't use registration as a definition. And of course many dogs are "registered" as Border collies who wouldn't meet the working standard set by those many unregistered dogs.

I'm not saying that THOSE dogs are NOT Border collies, I'm just pointing out that papers aren't the be all end all in a breed defined by performance.

In my mind, not all Border collies have to work, but they should ALL come from breedings that are done with an eye to producing outstanding working dogs.
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#23 Rebecca, Irena Farm

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Posted 28 January 2006 - 03:05 PM

Oh, I'm going to break a personal rule and respond to myself. :rolleyes:

I was thinking about Marty&Abigail's post. It's way cool that the BC Boards is getting so international. It opens our ideas to dog culture in other countries. One thing that I'm aware of in Europe and many other countries - the Border collie basically STARTED in most of those countries as a bench/kennel club breed. However, many FCI affiliated kennel clubs encourage performance standards. So it's not a lost cause :D

Marty&Abigail, here in North America, the breed was strictly a working breed for close to a hundred years. It's only been bred with appearance in mind for about ten years. We don't feel that breeding to make prettier dogs can possibly improve the breed. How could it?

It's like saying, "I want to breed the horse that can run a quarter mile the fastest. But I'm only going to breed the ones with white socks."

Will the horses you breed be the fastest? Not necessarily. And now you've taken from your gene pool all the fast horses that DON'T have white socks. Now you've got a gene pool that is not only NOT the fastest horses possible, but also may include health or temperament problems that only horses with white socks get, or may not have the potential to EVER be as fast as any of the horses in the wider gene pool.

That's why we are very passionate about keeping our working lines strictly bred for working. You just can't can't can't do both "brains and beauty" - the science just doesn't support it.
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#24 juliepoudrier

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Posted 28 January 2006 - 03:20 PM

[quote]Originally posted by IronHorse:
quote:
Barbies are not border collies. If you want something that isn't a border collie, why not get another type of dog (mixed or purebred) that meets your needs?
Kim
[/quote]I don't see how you can make this statement.
If the dog is registered properly then it is in fact a Border Collie even though it might be concidered a "barbie" by some.

I personally would define a "barbie" Border Collie as those that are breed specifically for show/conformation and alot that are breed for profit.
But from responses appearing on this thread the "barbie" concept is abit muddled from individual to individual. [/QB][/QUOTE]IronHorse,
Have you read the breed standard for the KC border collie (aka Barbie collie)? It just kills me that they say the only correct ears are tipped ears, though they can tip forward or to the side (though I understand that a dog with ears tipped to the side will have a harder time earning a CH than those with "Lassie tipped" ears). It's that sort of thing that truly defines a barbie collie. People who have real working border collies don't reject a dog simply because its ears don't meet a preconceived standard. Hell, as long as the dog can hear and take commands at a distance, who cares what the ears look like (beyond personal preference, that is, you can like a look without deciding that *only* dogs with that look are acceptable).

I think Kim's statement is dead on. If you want a dog that looks and acts like a golden retriever, why not get a golden retriever? Oh yeah, they are *golden* not black and white. There are certain characteristics inherent to a good working bred dog--intensity, intelligence, biddability, independence, a great work ethic. That's what makes a real border collie. If you don't want a dog like that but prefer a more docile, less intense sort of creature, then why not choose a breed that has those characteristics? Why take a good working dog and dumb it down into docile pet status?

So I have no confusion on what a barbie collie is. It's a dog bred for conformation from conformation stock. It's a dog whose "looks" are more important than anything else it does, right down to that 10:9 length to height ratio, tipped ears (even if they have to be glued that was as a pup), and eyes that are just so.

A real working border collie is one that really works to a reasonable standard, that standard being the open trial (USBCHA) or serious farm work.

Dogs bred for other activities like agility and flyball are what I consider sport collies.

Dogs bred strictly as pets/companions are likely backyard bred dogs.

As for my dogs, 5 of the 6 work stock or have worked stock and are retired. The 6th dog is working bred, but also inbred severely and has lots of issues. He actually has some very natural stock working talents, but he doesn't see the need for a human to be involved.

Barbie = plastic cookie cutter features created with a structure that has no real basis in reality.

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#25 karrie

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Posted 28 January 2006 - 03:22 PM

I consider Sam a Barbie Collie why cause he is my companion and we don't work /herd anything. Granted the boy does herd mice and my cat. He is considering helping with the laundry but so far he just sniffs. Autumn( 3 yr old dd) is almost completely potty trained so he lost alert of potty accident job. He still tells me when folks come to the door ( he is gonna be ticked when I put the bell up). Currently, is main job is to wear out the kids ( 3, 5, 9). Soon his job will included walk mama and keep my company in the garden and as I work the bit of land. ( still working on dh with ducks or chicks) He is my buddy. His lines ABCA and AKC. I'm still working on his papers sire is ABCA and dam is AKC ( her dam is AKC and ABCA) yet the two just can't get together.Sam in my book is a BARBIE COLLIE black and white, but he has the brains and insticts still of a real Border Collie just not as driven or determined to work (yet - he could still turn on). Maybe I should reclassify him as a Lazy Boy Collie.

#26 IronHorse

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Posted 28 January 2006 - 04:28 PM

Firchow,
No doubt that the Border Collie is a concept, but it is, as well as a conceptual class of dog, a recognized breed of dog that by registry documentation classifies an individual legally as a Border Collie.So my statement
"If the dog is registered properly then it is in fact a Border Collie even though it might be concidered a "barbie" by some." is not WRONG.
I did find the article that you supplied a link to interesting and informative however I fail to see how it clarifies the term "Barbie" as it applies to the Border Collie.

Julie Poudrier,
I believe your post is possibly the best definition so far as to what the term "barbie" is refering to when used on these forums.
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#27 bcnewe2

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Posted 28 January 2006 - 06:11 PM

Rebecca writes

"working bred" Border collies are not just bred to be working machines. What makes them superior partners for the livestock handler also makes them great at lots of other stuff. Border collies are a fragile balance of reactiveness and impulse control, drive and biddability, work ethic and loyalty, intensity and patience, athletic prowess and structural balance. Successful representatives of this ideal are nice to live with (assuming you are ready to meet their need for exercise and mental stimulation) and are capable of just about anything.

I'd like to add that all these things are hard enough for a true working breeder to access and breed for. When you have a Barbie breeder add in some "working lines" to their barbie collies you often get a "pretty" bc who have some of the traits a true working dog might and some not. That can be a pitiful mix. They usually get a pretty dog that can do a bit of everything but nothing really well. I've also seen some that come out with crazy working traits without the traits that will keep the "craziness" in check. It ends up with the public having to warn people away from bc's because they take to much work to own. I had a barbie owner out to my place and she thought my dogs were strange because they were sleeping in the kitchen instead of bouncing off the walls. Both her barbies are always bouncing off the walls (I really think that?s in the training but that?s another story all together)
I consider my working dogs to be a bit like Idiot Savants. The barbies in my mind end up with just the Idiot and not the Savant part.
I would like to think that I'm not insulting barbie owners and I know there are some great barbies out there, I just don't think you can compare the 2 breeds. So if you own and love a barbie collie and aren't breeding it. Good on you!
Hope that makes a bit of since.
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#28 Eileen Stein

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Posted 28 January 2006 - 06:19 PM

<< What defines a "barbie" collie from other BCs? >>

Barbie Collies are dogs bred to Kennel Club appearance standards. To see examples, watch Westminster -- every "Border Collie" there is a Barbie Collie.

<< But isn't it possible to obtain a good working dog out of a "barbie" line? >>

Theoretically, I suppose. But they are very rare. I accept that they might exist, but I have never seen one. Among people who care only about working ability, I've never known one to seek a pup or a stud from Barbie lines.

<< So lets say someone is interested in a Border Collie as a pet/companion dog,,perhaps looking for a dog to play frisbie,fetch or whatever,would you say that they would be more satisfied with a "barbie"? >>

No. Why would they?

<< Ok then Let me ask this question?
How many of you with purebred BCs are actually working them on stock? >>

All of mine do (except the pup, who's too young yet). What's the connection between this question and your Barbie question?

<< If the dog is registered properly then it is in fact a Border Collie even though it might be concidered a "barbie" by some. >>

It's a border collie if you define a border collie as any dog that's registered under that name by a registry.

Glenn Firchow's point is tremendously important. The AKC is trying to change the border collie from a breed in the Alaskan husky sense to a breed in the conformation sense. To see why AKC Border Collies are not true border collies you have to be able to conceptualize a breed as something other than AKC's concept of a breed. Since AKC's concept of what a breed is is pervasive in our society ("What do Border Collies look like?"), the article Glenn linked to is of great help in appreciating the difference.

#29 Howdyjabo

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Posted 28 January 2006 - 06:19 PM

"If the dog is registered properly then it is in fact a Border Collie even though it might be concidered a "barbie" by some." is not WRONG."


The BREED Border Collie should be what was created 100 yrs ago-- and should still be the same in another 200yrs.
Papers won't guarantee that consistancy for any working breed.
Papers are not a certificate of Breedability. They just document lineages-with an oath of truthfulness.

If I had a registered Daushound-- but it looked like a Great Dane-- Do you really think the papers should be given much value????

#30 Kat's Dogs

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Posted 28 January 2006 - 07:29 PM

Dazzle doesn't work stock (she may someday but not any time real soon), but I don't think of her as a Barbie Collie.
Why? Because she is out of great (herding)champions and right out of 2 great herding dogs.

When someone breeds dogs that don't work or are not any good at working (they just take some pictures of the dog with sheep and say they work) I consider full blown Barbie Collies.

Dogs that are are out of good working stock will have to have "good looks". A dog with bad joint problems and that has eye problems couldn't very well work stock could they? So dogs with a good and healthy body type are the best at working, that is why Border Collies at least sort of look alike - but ear sets don't and color don't matter at all. But dogs that are alowed to breed just for looks alone, Barbies.

If someone wants a companion dog "would they be better with a Barbie". Well, why do they want a BC at all? Why not a nice Lab or Golden. Those are still active but better for the calm life style. They shouldn't want a BC if they want a REALLY low key border collie. Those aren't Border Collies at all.

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#31 IronHorse

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Posted 28 January 2006 - 08:22 PM

Eileen,
The question I stated in this thread
<< How many of you with purebred BCs are actually working them on stock?>>
really should of been a seperate post I did go OT with that.
As for what the AKC is promoting in its policy, I am quite aware of and totally disagree with their approach.

As for the policy that the ABCA and the USBCC state well I agree with the words but in reality over the course of this past year I have personally witnessed no less then 4 ABCA registered breeders that DO breed for "looks" and very much breed what others have stated on this thread as "barbies".
I would agree that Glenn Firchow's point is tremendously important but what is the ABCA doing to maintain its own mission statement amongst breeders who are useing the ABCA registry?
What critia and how is it enforced to ensure that ABCA breeders are producing reliable working Border Collies?

This is not meant as an attack against the ABCA nor a defense of what the AKC is doing.
It is simply an inquiry from a person who sees one group calling another groups dogs "barbies" but has witnessed first hand the exact same breeding pratices being nurtured by at least some ABCA breeders.

Certainly you as one of the ABCA directors can address this question.
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#32 Sue R

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Posted 29 January 2006 - 01:04 AM

Anybody with an ABCA-registered bitch and access to an ABCA-registered dog, can be called an ABCA breeder by paying their annual dues and breeding said dogs and registering the pups with the ABCA.

Personal integrity and the desire and knowledge to make breedings for the right reasons are what separate good breeders from irresponsible breeders.

Lots of people pass a test and get a driver's license, but that doesn't guarantee that they are all good drivers. Lots of folks have children, but that doesn't make them good parents.

The working dog world (including USBCHA and ABCA) relies heavily on personal integrity and the true desire of its members to make decisions that maintain and improve the breed, and on minimal (in our society) laws and rules.

Nit-picking rules are common in "the dog fancy", as has been pointed out on another board and in conformation discussions. They are not in the working Border Collie world.
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#33 Eileen Stein

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Posted 29 January 2006 - 04:12 AM

<< Certainly you as one of the ABCA directors can address this question. >>

Well, sure.

The ABCA cannot prevent people who register with us from breeding dogs for the wrong reasons, any more than the AKC can prevent its breeders from breeding dogs who don't conform to their appearance standard. Both things happen often, unfortunately, which is why registration alone is not a guarantee that the dog will live up to the ideals of the registry.

What the ABCA can do, and does, is to hold up working ability as the one and only standard of excellence in our breed, and in association with the USBCHA offer competitions through which dogs' working abilities can be demonstrated and improved, and reward those dogs who best exemplify the working standard with honors and prizes. An incentive program, if you will, for those who breed in accordance with the traditions of the breed, and a way of making it easier for buyers and breeders to identify the best border collies. We also try, through public education, to advocate for the working-bred border collie as the only true border collie, and to discourage breeding for appearance in every way possible. We de-register dogs who are awarded conformation championships in the breed ring.

We fought AKC recognition because we knew that having a competing standard of excellence advocated and flaunted by the largest and most powerful dog organization in the world would make our task much harder. We were right -- it has. The AKC is in a position to shape public perception and public demand more than we are, and breeders who are producing dogs chiefly for money want to cater to that AKC-shaped perception and demand. We can discourage this, but we can't prevent it. Or at least no method of preventing it that I have ever heard, out of years of brainstorming, has ever been feasible as a practical matter or desirable from a population genetics point of view.

#34 muggs

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Posted 29 January 2006 - 04:20 AM

I'll stick my pathetic two cents in here. My grandfather's favorite dog was a border collie that worked both his dairy cows and a couple hundred sheep as well. What made that dog a true border collie, and my understanding of the breed, is that Jack did anything he was asked by my grandfather (handler) and instinctually knew what was asked of him as well. It wasn't so much that he wanted to work livestock (a given), but that he would do anything for his owner/handler. When my grandfather turned the farm over to a son, the dog stayed by my grandfather's side at all times. From the experienced on this board, am I wrong thinking this is that the main difference with the true border collie and just any herding breed?

This attracts me to the breed. Who cares what they look like. Until I found this website though, I had no idea how to find a breeder, but knew to avoid AKC from watching info way back on TV while owning a bc. I believe as I've heard so many times on this board they should only be bred by those who know what they are doing to preserve the amazing characteristics. I believe it's a crap shoot if a dog that was not bred from the proven working parents is a good worker or not, even if they have a good pedigree (just like humans I suppose). Just learning here.
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#35 bobh

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Posted 29 January 2006 - 04:33 AM

JMO, ABCA could do alot more to insure that only the best dogs are breed by not just recomending breeding practices but insisting on it .

for example all dogs that are to be breed must excell in open trials . have full x-rays, eyes tested .No history of genetic DX.
ABca could also have a reporting system so they could see if a certain dog combination has a large number of problems in their litters.
One could still breed their dogs but could not reg, the pups if they did not meet the standards.

What do you think

bobh

#36 bobh

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Posted 29 January 2006 - 04:41 AM

Eileen I did not see your post .
Why cant AbCA insist on seeing health records and alowing only so m,any litters by a bitch in her breeding years. Dna samples and so on .
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#37 Howdyjabo

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Posted 29 January 2006 - 06:02 AM

The answer is not in ABCA setting RULES-- Its too unwieldy for that organisation.

The answer is education of buyers and USBCC seems to be trying to fill that need.

Years ago the average good breeder of Border Collies wasn't too concerned about hips or eyes. Their breeding program kept those issues mostly at bay.
But the BUYERS got educated and insisted on some medical proof- and walla its very common now for most good breeders to get them.

If the BUYERS insist on working integrity- it will be there.

#38 Dixie_Girl

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Posted 29 January 2006 - 06:20 AM

That is the key........the BUYERS insisting on working integrety. When I visited the ranch where I bought Jackson, I insisted on watching the bitch and dog work some sheep. The owners were quite surprised that I asked this, but were quite willing to oblige me. It was in a small pen but it was enough for me to see the parents WERE working dogs. The bitch was imported from Ireland at 2yrs old, but I still had to see her work. Who knows why she was sold here? But it was no guarantee that Jackson would or could work sheep, but it showed it was possible. And the odds were way better than if Jackson came from parents that had a bunch of AKC beauty contest ribbons.
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#39 Eileen Stein

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Posted 29 January 2006 - 07:59 AM

<< JMO, ABCA could do alot more to insure that only the best dogs are breed by not just recomending breeding practices but insisting on it .

for example all dogs that are to be breed must excell in open trials . >>

That would exclude many, many excellent working dogs who earn their keep on farms and ranches but whose owners don't trial them. Don't have the time, don't have the money, don't have the interest. Do we really want to kick them out of our registry? The alternative is what we do now -- register them and also register dogs that excel in open trials and dogs that do not work that well or do not work at all.

The fundamental purpose of a registry is to maintain accurate pedigree records, so that breeders can trace and understand bloodlines and breed better border collies. Registering them all achieves this purpose, while still enabling a buyer, in the exercise of ordinary prudence, to do his own research, ask his own questions, and find a suitable dog. Refusing to register pups from dogs who haven't excelled in open trials would not achieve this purpose -- their pedigree records would cease to be available, at least through us, no matter how good they are.

We cannot and do not claim that every dog we register is a good working dog. What we can and do claim is that we are the registry good working dog breeders register with, because we are dedicated to the working border collie, and therefore your chances of finding a good dog are best with us. That doesn't relieve you of doing your homework.

<< all dogs that are to be breed must . . . have full x-rays, eyes tested .No history of genetic DX >>

<< Why cant AbCA insist on seeing health records >>

Okay, suppose we refused to register dogs who didn't have "full x-rays" (not sure what that means -- elbows as well as hips?) or eye tests. That would mean throwing out the offspring of many good working dogs who have a long history of disease free lines, and who we have no reason to believe are diseased themselves, but whose owners didn't choose to have full x-rays or eye tests. Some breeders choose not to test because they're crappy breeders who don't give a damn, and I would be happy to see them gone. But some breeders choose not to test because they feel they can't afford it, and/or don't really believe there's much of a problem with hip dysplasia and eye diseases precisely because they haven't run into it. And some breeders choose not to test because they don't have much regard for the tests. They may know of a dog whose hips were rated Good by one OFA panel and dysplastic by another (yes, this has happened). Or they may know enough about hip dysplasia to know the limitations in terms of accuracy and effectiveness of hip testing, and conclude that testing their dog with real work is a better way.

There ARE real bases for reservations about the accuracy and effectiveness of hip x-rays to predict good hips in offspring (I can elaborate on these if you like). At present we recommend it because it's the only medical tool we've got, but it's far from perfect. I personally would not want us to exclude dogs from the studbook just because their parents were not x-rayed. I think we would be doing more harm than good. Years ago the ISDS adopted a policy of requiring eye exams, and excluding from registration dogs who were diagnosed with PRA or CEA, or who produced pups that were diagnosed with PRA or CEA. There is now good reason to believe that most of the dogs they excluded for PRA (some of whom were brilliant working dogs) were misdiagnosed, and actually had FMAR (Focal/Multifocal Acquired Retinopathy -- "acquired" meaning that it's not hereditary), and that PRA is actually rare or nonexistent in border collies. Wouldn't it be better if we had those dogs in our studbooks -- to have pedigree records for them? By registering without requiring these tests we maintain pedigree records for all ABC dogs. If your priority as a pet buyer is to minimize your chances of buying a pup with hereditary disease, you can simply require evidence from the breeder that the tests you care about were done and are favorable. When enough people have this as their priority and insist on the tests, breeders are driven to provide them -- we have seen this happening. If OTOH you're dubious about the value of the tests and prefer to go on pure working accomplishments, you can make your purchase accordingly. Either way, the dog will be registered and you can therefore trace its ancestry. (Note: I should say that we do currently exclude dogs with CEA and their progeny from registration, although this is a policy that will likely be modified in the near future, now that we have the DNA test for CEA.)

Moeover, don't overestimate the impact we would have on breeding practices if we refused to register dogs unless they were bred to our liking. Most puppy buyers who don't know enough not to buy from bad breeders don't know anything about the ABCA either. They don't care whether the dog is ABC-registered or not, as long as it's registered. That's why puppy mill registries have been created. Richard Swafford, who was expelled from the ABCA back in 2004 and can no longer register with us, is still selling plenty of dogs over the internet, registering the pups he breeds with an outfit that would register a ham sandwich.

Well, this is getting pretty long, and I have an ailing sheep to go see to, so I'll bring it to a close before getting into populations genetics, the size of the gene pool, genetic bottlenecks, etc. Maybe later.

#40 IronHorse

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Posted 29 January 2006 - 08:29 AM

Originally posted by Eileen Stein:]

The ABCA cannot prevent people who register with us from breeding dogs for the wrong reasons,

Why not?
It would appear to me that if a breeder petitions you to register a litter from ABCA registry or registries recognized by ABCA parents that the ABCA could insist upon documentation of the parent dogs working ability.

I would think that at least as much thought and effort that went into the creation of
The Association?s bylaws as well as the ABCA Disciplinary Rules would also be justified in the creation of regulations pertaining to the breeding of ABCA registered dogs, after all isn't the integrity of working Border Collies the primary goal of the ABCA?

The ABCA exists to register, maintain and verify the pedigrees of Border Collies, to promote and foster in North America the breeding, training and distribution of reliable working Border Collies, and to promote stockdog trials and exhibitions.

Please enlighten me if I am missing such information,but I could not find anything pertaining to regulations regarding the breeding of ABCA registered dogs in my search of the ABCA website.
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