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  #71  
Old 01-04-2013, 06:14 PM
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Laurelin Laurelin is offline
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Originally Posted by TahlzK View Post
I don't understand, why don't people want to health test their Koolies?
I'm imagining the same reason many papillon people don't. Right or wrong there's a lot of 'old school' breeders out there that don't see the need for all the new fancy stuff. They don't understand genetics in many cases or don't see the need. Unfortunately in toys there's the case of 'well they don't work and HD is no problem so...' and in working dogs 'well the dogs worked for years so they must be sound'... It just takes time to change the norm. Some breeds are further along with the change than others.
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  #72  
Old 01-04-2013, 06:29 PM
SaraB SaraB is offline
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Originally Posted by Laurelin View Post
2. One of my big gripes with koolie breeders I've seen is that there's a lot that don't seem to do much with their dogs sports-wise but then go on to say their dogs can do sports well. What kind of proving/titling are you planning? I know titling is not everything but it's nice to see some proof of ability.

Zinga will be titled extensively in agility, disc and rally. I am also looking into herding, I'm a complete newbie when it comes to that area, however there are several organizations that include koolies, AHBA is one of them. Any dog I breed will have lessons at the very least in herding and will be herding tested. Zinga has already been herding instinct tested and passed and she will go back into lessons in a couple months when it warms up.

3. How important is stock work going to be in your breeding program? Or are you going to be focusing more on disc and agility?

I will admit right now, I'm not a huge fan of herding, the chaos of it drives me a bit crazy, however, since this is the breed I chose and want to preserve the herding instinct, I will suck it up and do herding. Or I will pay someone to train my dog. I will of course focus on disc and agility because as Zinga has already proven to me, this breed excels at those sports.
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Originally Posted by Shai View Post
Just wanted to say I'm glad you guys made this thread explaining your thought process. I was a bit taken aback when Zip was chose at birth and it's good to see you're planning to "get him for him" so to speak and breeding decisions will be made later depending on how everyone turns out.
He is coming her first and foremost to be my husband's dog. Classic left a huge hole in our house (physically and emotionally) and it's wearing on us both.

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Originally Posted by SpringerLover View Post
My question that I've never asked is... how do you plan to establish a breeding program?
To be honest, breeding program is a bit of an over-zealous term. I couldn't think of a better word though. Right now I have two hypothetical generations planned: (and again, big disclaimer, this is hypothetical, obviously contingent on health testing, temp and working ability) Zinga to Zip, Didgie to Zip, hopefully a solid female is produced and that girl can be bred to Traveler.

One other thing I think a lot of people don't realize is that there are people importing these dogs. It's just a matter of finding them, staying connected, and pursuing the options. I have spoken to several people who are thinking of importing in the next couple of years and who knows where our options will be then. Importation of semen is a viable option as well, as long as there's some health testing going on.


The pairing of Zing or Didgie and Zip is going to produce at least a puppy for each, right? And this is a long-lived breed... where will ALL THE DOGS GO?!
How many dogs are you thinking?? LOL To be honest, I have a full waiting list for a Zinga puppy already. Most of these people are disc people who have seen Zinga work and are excited about the breed and trust that I can handle this the correct way.

But, more seriously... how many are usually in a litter and do you plan on keeping bitches on co-owns with people so you keep your actual numbers down or...? And what's going to keep the breed from becoming just a pet if there's not going to be a definition of work in the US?
Linds already answered this, co-own dogs that could benefit the lines in the future and speuter agreement on pet quality. The definition of work throws me off a bit, not really sure what you mean. Herding is work and that's pretty clearly defined. Will we be selling to sheep farmers? Who knows. I know I will be incredibly picky about homes for my puppies as whoever gets these puppies will become the spokesperson for this breed in their relative communities. It's a difficult job, trust me.

I'm not interrogating, or at least meaning to... just these are questions that have been running through my mind since the start of this Koolie importing stuffs.
I don't mean to be snarky here, but I've always known you have questions. We get together pretty regularly, why have these not been brought up before?
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  #73  
Old 01-04-2013, 06:30 PM
SaraB SaraB is offline
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Originally Posted by JessLough View Post
I guess I've been thinking this, but more of... won't all your breeding dogs be... related? LOL
Yes, they will be. Even the pairing of Zip and Zinga/Didgie (no that's not some crazy doggy threesome ) will be line-bred in a sense. We will have to pay close attention to breeding coefficients and I will be relying heavily on experienced breeders as well as my usual go-to veterinarians about this. This is also another reason why health testing is so important to me.

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Originally Posted by Kilter View Post
And yes, if you have limited breeding dogs you will breed into a corner eventually, so you'd have to decide if you want to have tight lines or excuse the lack of clearances on stud dogs from down under. But that happens in almost any breed, as breeders tend to keep girls and breed to nearby stud dogs, or the one that's winning who happens to be the son of another dog that's winning and so on.
I'm hoping for more importation of dogs in the future as well as some breeders to start health testing. It might be a hope and a prayer, but that's all we really have going for us right now. In the mean time, I have two generations planned and lets be honest, what breeder has more than that figured out at any point in time? Something could come up that makes me want to scrap the lines all together, I don't know what the future will hold.

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Originally Posted by Laurelin View Post
What it means to me (though this may be wrong but it is a question I have) is if the breed has been developed as a working ranch dog pretty much solely, how are you going to make sure to keep the breed what it is once you start breeding for something different (sports)? I am not one to think sports breeding is bad for the record.

And I do appreciate the openness of both of you.
Ok that makes sense. Like I've written some where above, Zing is going back into herding lessons (she had to grow up a bit, her trainer said) and Zip will be at the very least instinct tested but will push for more than that. I don't know a whole lot about herding, it's an area where many of the trainers around me excel, so I will be relying on their input as well. I'm still hoping I can find that person who I can pay to do herding with my dogs, but alas, I think I might just have to suck it up.
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  #74  
Old 01-04-2013, 06:30 PM
SaraB SaraB is offline
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Originally Posted by AdrianneIsabel View Post
Yup, same thing I asked before... is there going to be a governing body (KC) established with a standard and code of ethics to adhere to prior to breeding?
Yes!! I hope so!! I would love to start an actual kennel club here in the states once there is more of a population. A code of ethics will be part of that. Prior to breeding? Who knows. I would love to have on started by then, but it really is reliant on the popularity of the breed.

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Originally Posted by Lyzelle View Post
This is what I took it as, as well. How do you plan to keep the temperament and structure of this herding/ranching breed when most homes you would cater to in the USA are not herding/ranching homes. Or, are you hoping that C/Koolies are very versatile dogs that are perfectly capable of doing a variety of sports without much change in structure/temperament. Or if something does have to be changed, what your goals are in your breeding program. That sorta thing, I suppose.

And if there will be any Breed Club, or is there one in the US already? Would you seek out AKC recognition or no?
I think I answered the first one somewhere above. The breed is very versatile, but again, herding will be an important aspect of this. Even though I like agility more.

I hope we don't seek out AKC recognition to be honest. It's not something I want to be a part of.

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Originally Posted by Laurelin View Post
Have you thought about or found a mentor over here that maybe ranches with a breed that works in a similar fashion? (I'm not even really sure if there is one)
I work with a herding instructor that is local to me, but even she "borrows" the sheep and the ranch that we use. It's just not a feasible option here. One day, I hope to own acreage where we can keep a decent head of sheep. That'll be in the future though.

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Originally Posted by Dizzy View Post
You have to hope other people will follow your lead or this will fizzle out quite quickly. And as others have already asked, who decides on what standard you achieve? Ranching ability is different to sporting? Etc etc. Which I guess is why breed clubs and standards come in.

Why do you want to breed? Who for? Where do you see it going?

I like koolies. My oh wanted one till I told them there are none in the UK (based on trav pics!), but having seen new breeds go tits up in the UK I know how hard this is to be fair. It's a lifetimes work, a few breedings by 3 health tested dogs is a drop in the ocean. There needs to be almost a business plan in place!!

Are there other people on board?
I agree, we have to hope for others to import or others to start health testing. Otherwise, if it fizzles out, it won't be for a while and one of us would be ready to import again.

The standard would be decided by the breed club and it's members. Which is a huge reason why I want to wait until there is a healthy population of these dogs here before starting one. I want unbiased decisions, I want a board to decide things with members voting.

As far as a business plan, you are looking at it. This is an adventure, we don't know where it's going to go. All I know is that this breed is awesome, it fits a niche and I want to be able to share them with the people who adore them.

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Originally Posted by SpringerLover View Post
That is how I meant it. I don't have an issue with breeding for sports either, per say... and I also don't have an issue with breeding for pets. I was just curious what the ultimate goal would be, and what the dog would be classified as if they're no longer used as a herding dog?
Again, I answered this a few times above. They will see herding, not as much as if they lived on a sheep ranch, but I can only do what I can.
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  #75  
Old 01-04-2013, 06:31 PM
SaraB SaraB is offline
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Originally Posted by crazedACD View Post
What is your 'mission statement' so to speak with the breed? Are you just seeing where it goes or are you trying to shape the breed in the U.S.? I am interested in the answers on keeping the herding instinct in the breed.

This isn't meant to be a volatile statement, but I'll admit I am a little surprised that there is no intention to heavily trial/title the foundation dogs. I wouldn't be very concerned if this was a popular breed, but what you do here (if the breeding program takes off) will probably set the tone for the breed in this continent.

I took a look at the Koolie Club of Australia...I know you have said there are no breeders that current health test, but I did see some that have been approved by the Veterinary Genetic Assurance in Aus. Two Koolie breeders seem to at least be doing DNA profiling for purity and genetic disease. I like that as I'm concerned there is at least some breeders that are creating herding mixes and passing them off as Koolies (particularly the big breeder in the US). Are there any plans to have profiling like that done?

I'm not so much interested in Koolies, but Kelpies have run kind of parallel to them (they have more presence in the states as ranch dogs) so I do take interest in these threads.
I don't think we are trying to "shape" the breed in America per say, just trying to get more of these dogs here. As far as not heavily titling, that's all I do. LOL I'm a professional trainer at a competitive agility school, I wouldn't have a job anymore if I didn't actively trial my dogs. Zinga has already started her disc career (did awesome in her first comp!) and is well on her way with her agility foundations. I have recently looked into getting a HCT title by the AHBA, and will likely have to travel to do that. Any dog I breed will have titles of one sort or another on them. Never a question about that.

The Australian Koolie Club does recommend DNA profiling, however, I am not impressed by the gene pool in which was chosen to create that DNA profile. I trust the breeders I got my dogs from, and that's all I am currently planning on doing. As far as I know there aren't any genetic disease tests available for koolies, however if there was one developed for Ataxia, I would be all over it. Koolies and kelpies are close relatives and that is a huge genetic health concern with kelpies.
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  #76  
Old 01-04-2013, 06:33 PM
SaraB SaraB is offline
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Originally Posted by TahlzK View Post
I don't understand, why don't people want to health test their Koolies?
The opinion is that koolies are free of genetic diseases and that if they are capable of working until they are old that they can't be anything but healthy. There are several flaws with that logic in my opinion, including that no breed can be free of genetic diseases and that most dogs are bred between the ages of 2-6 when they haven't had a life time to prove their health.
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  #77  
Old 01-04-2013, 06:53 PM
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Laurelin Laurelin is offline
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Thanks Sara for all that. Makes a lot of sense and I am very eager to see what happens in the future. Know anyone with koolies in my area? I'd love to meet some.
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  #78  
Old 01-04-2013, 06:59 PM
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Zip is such a cutie <3 I can't wait to see how well he fits in with the merley crew. Is your husband super excited?

Merlin says that if Zinga or Didgie need some new merle australian bloodlines.. he is available
haha THINK OF HOW FLUFFEH THEY WOULD BE!
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  #79  
Old 01-04-2013, 07:18 PM
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I would suggest that you two start something, anything as far as a code of ethics and a club of some sort goes, before someone else does who doesn't think testing is needed or assumes they can breed border collies to heelers and call them 'rare koolies' and making a mess. Just a suggestion. Plus having something online that defines what they are and has solid info will help others learn and get in touch.
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  #80  
Old 01-04-2013, 07:21 PM
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Cali Mae Cali Mae is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laurelin View Post
I'm imagining the same reason many papillon people don't. Right or wrong there's a lot of 'old school' breeders out there that don't see the need for all the new fancy stuff. They don't understand genetics in many cases or don't see the need. Unfortunately in toys there's the case of 'well they don't work and HD is no problem so...' and in working dogs 'well the dogs worked for years so they must be sound'... It just takes time to change the norm. Some breeds are further along with the change than others.
Cali's breeder, unfortunately, didn't regularly health test. Although both Cali's parents were CERF clear. Although I wasn't too happy with Cali having luxating patellas, the vet said that even if both parents received ratings of excellent, there's no guarantee.. just a lesser chance.
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