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Thread: dog breeding, line breeding is in breeding - article

  1. #11

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    I just think we're starting to paying some pretty heavy prices for chasing purity and perfection. I think you can achieve specialisation without resorting to inbreeding practices and achieve a compromise between excelling at particular tasks and retaining some genetic diversity.

    You see it in all examples where inbreeding has been adopted. Just the other day a family friend was complaining about bananas. He said these ones (Cavendish) taste like crap. He mentioned that there had been a banana species previously that had been much tastier. Well, given that bananas are my favourite herb/berry/fruit thing I was intrigued. We lost almost all of the previous species, the Gros Michel to the Panama fungus. Well now the fungus is back and unfortunately, although the Cavendish (the current species) were resistant to the first strain, they don't believe they will be resistant to this 2nd strain. And of course, all Cavendish bananas are genetically identical, we bred a 'superior' product which can not reproduce or survive on its own but that met all of our criteria. And now there's a chance we'll have to start again, with a new species.

    I'm not saying that you don't have the potential to get exciting and/or good results from inbreeding. But this article does a good job of articulating the cost of such practices and I just think there needs to be more consideration of that. It could be done perfectly if we had a perfect understanding and perfect control over the dog genome and the way genes mutate and interact with each other but we don't and when we remove all of the natural safeguards in place through sexual reproduction (rather than asexual) through inbreeding practices, well I think there's a definite case for considering whether the benefits are always worth it. And honestly, having met a lot of breeders (particularly within some breeds), I don't believe they're always the best people for the job. I am really excited at the prospect of people from different backgrounds (not just people who want to show dogs) and particularly those with more in-depth knowledge around science, wanting to get involved in breeding better dogs.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    Rural Western Australia
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    Quote Originally Posted by 99bottles View Post
    You see it in all examples where inbreeding has been adopted. Just the other day a family friend was complaining about bananas. He said these ones (Cavendish) taste like crap. He mentioned that there had been a banana species previously that had been much tastier. Well, given that bananas are my favourite herb/berry/fruit thing I was intrigued. We lost almost all of the previous species, the Gros Michel to the Panama fungus. Well now the fungus is back and unfortunately, although the Cavendish (the current species) were resistant to the first strain, they don't believe they will be resistant to this 2nd strain. And of course, all Cavendish bananas are genetically identical, we bred a 'superior' product which can not reproduce or survive on its own but that met all of our criteria. And now there's a chance we'll have to start again, with a new species.

    .
    It is very common for new strains of a disease to arise. With cereal breeding they are constantly screening genetic lines for resistance as these strains arise. Breeders can usually react pretty quickly to it. There is a wide range of cereal varieties the trick is getting yield, quality and a spectrum of diseases resistances in together. This is not easy as we are chasing production as well as disease resistance which is where backcrossing and linebreeding becomes important to get a wide range of desirable caracteristics into one variety. I think techniques all have their place.

    I think the trick is to really understand the role that each plays. In working dogs it is about getting a number of desirable traits across into each dog. It is easier to do and less random with closer breeding. Doesnt mean you cant use say use a splash of kelpie into a working BC but you would probably need to consolidate the desired trait with a spot of line breeding.

    I guess what I am saying is don't discount the use of close breeding to enhance lines of dogs because it can be used most effectively especially where combinations of desired characteristics are required. Continued outcrossing can make this a very difficult task and can sometimes take you back a few steps.

    As I said you might find the chapter on the use of inbreeding and line breeding in working sheepdogs quite interesting. It gives another perspective that shouldnt be over looked. The dogs that come out of this particular breeder are top notch working dogs and he has clearly put considerable effort in to understanding from both a scientific and practical experience point of view as a passionate believer of breeding outstanding working sheepdogs.
    Last edited by Kalacreek; 07-02-2014 at 04:43 PM.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
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    Geelong, Vic
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    The problem is you cannot compare plants and animals. Plants naturally reproduce asexually (cuttings, off shoots etc) and through Apomixis (production of an unfertalised 'seed' or 'bulb' with no combination from another plant)

    Bananas are not grown from seed they are propagated from shoots at the base of the tree, hence being clones of the mother plant. They also don't need to be fertilised to produce fruit. Bananas also genetically have 3 sets of chromosomes, not 2 so hence not requiring the production of seed (diploid plants are like us, 2 sets of chromosomes and hence when they separate they're only half cells - our egg and sperm carry half the chromosomes of the original cells - and have to produce seed sexually, so need pollen)

    The genome of domesticated animals contains many alleles (different copies of genes) some good, some bad. If we do not decrease the variation within a gene pool (ie a breed) to a certain extent, then there is no consistency and variation is too high. You cannot make a breed without inbreeding or line breeding. Too much inbreeding limits genetic variation, and that in turn can produce individuals with two copies of a lot of recessive genes... some good some bad. When you inbreed/line breed you outcross to a complimentary line to increase the variation but to keep the quality of what you want to produce.
    http://i24.photobucket.com/albums/c11/Mali_nut/K9LOGO.jpg

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