DECISIONS, DECISIONS...THE STUD DOG

Written by: Tracy Ferrick

 


When you own a stud dog, you have a lot of decisions to make.

PICK OF LITTER OR STUD FEE

If you choose a pick of litter instead of charging a stud fee, you have the option of keeping the pick of litter or selling it (if you are just starting out, this is a great way to build quality breeding stock). By adding to your dogs gene pool and evaluating the pup as it grows, you can really see what your stud dog produces. In addition, this gives you the opportunity to have your kennel name on the pick puppy.

* Some breeders become "kennel blind" and lose sight of what they’ve been trying to accomplish.

As far as a stud fee goes, not many people have $1,500-$2,500 for breeding their bitch. Another option is to take half of the fee up front and the other half when the first puppy is sold.

CORRECTING FAULTS

Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of your stud dog. If your dog has faults, breed to a bitch that doesn’t have these same faults. Don’t feel bad about turning down a breeding. Always breed to increase the QUALITY of the breed. Breeding mediocre specimens only produces mediocre specimens.

BREEDING THE STUD DOG

You will have to decide early on whether to breed naturally or to use artificial insemination by a professional licensed by the AKC. By using the AI technique, you can prevent any altercations between the breeding pair and also protect your stud dog from any bacteria the bitch may have that can render your stud dog sterile.

You will need to start "handling’ your future stud dog at a young age so that when he goes in to be collected for an AI or for shipping of the semen, he will perform. Yes, this sounds distasteful, but is necessary. Breeding naturally takes patience and skill and utilizing a breeding rack is best. If you are faint of heart, do not consider breeding.

Your stud dog should have his hips screened if under two years of age and OFA certified if over two years. He should also have had a full blood work panel to assure all is well.

Contact other breeders if you have questions regarding the line the bitch comes from. Learn about the pedigrees that will compliment your dog, and which ones won’t.

UTILIZING A STUD DOG CONTRACT

The owner of a stud dog should use a stud dog contract, even between friends and mentors. If your conditions are spelled out from the beginning, there will be no room for hard feelings later.

I hope this has provided you with something to think about before breeding your dog!

 


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