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Thread: First time breeder in need of advise

  1. #1

    Default First time breeder in need of advise

    Hey there,

    I'm new on here as well as been a first time breeder and was after some advise in regards to breeding and what complications there can possibly be in breeding a smaller dog with a larger one.

    I have a English Staffy X that I'd like to breed with a larger young male Argentinian x Dogdebordo (not sure if that's how it's spelt), and have been told that there could be some possible problems in breeding a larger male with my smaller female staffy and what to know if this is (a) true and (b) if there is what could they be?

    The female will be 2 in September and approx 3hands in height, and the male is nearly a year and approx 6hands in height. The female hasnt had pups before and this is her 3rd heat now, and would like to know as well when is the point during her heat that she can get pregnant, and if the young male is also mature enough to be able to do it as well.

    Any and all advise is welcome and appreciated thanks

  2. #2
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    Your bitch could die. That's one of the complications.

    One or more of the puppies could die.

    And if you do manage to have successful puppies - one or more of them could end up in the shelters and pounds - especially when they hit the doggy equivalent of rebellious teens at 7 months old. And given your breed combination - they'd have to be super nice with people, dolls (child test) and maybe cats to be put up for adoption. Most of this kind of mix just gets PTS.

    If you were in Victoria - I would say the other reason not to do it is their breed specific legislation which means that any dog can be removed and PTS based on appearance alone and not behaviour. Can take 2 years to appeal this decision and get the dog back.

    Have you read the sticky threads in here - there's a lot of detail about what can go wrong from the pregnancy to the birthing to the trying to find good homes for the puppies.

    So for your particular mix - if you breed a small female with a large male especially something with a really big head like a DDBx - you're probably looking at a c-section to have the puppies because there is a possibility their skulls will be too big to fit through her birth canal. Naturally this will be traumatic for the bitch and will affect her ability to feed her puppies - since there will be a gigantic healing wound where all the nipples are. So you may be hand feeding. How do you feel about getting up every two hours through the night for a couple of weeks?

    Normally I'd suggest you'd go and talk to the breeder of your dog but since you're not with the ANKC (you have mixed breeds involved here), I'd be guessing the person who bred your dog would not be available or interested in helping. If they are - great.

    But I think you'd be much better off if you're set on this mix - to have a large female and a small male. Do you seriously hate your bitch so much you'd risk killing her for this?

    The other thing I always want breeders to do is tests for basic problems in the breeds, hip problems, PRA (blindness), and any other preventable (by not pairing) genetic diseases that might be in the ancestor breeds.

    This is what a responsible breeder should be doing with their breeding program. It's great you came here and asked some questions. You should also ask your vet a lot of questions - especially about the mis match in size and what a C-section will cost and what can go wrong with that. Most British Bulldogs are born by C-section tho they are supposed to be trying to fix that in the breed so they can go back to natural births but the breed standard still has "head as large as possible" which means C-sections in practice.
    What is a responsible companion animal breeder? - RSPCA Australia knowledgebase

  3. #3
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    If you want to breed you should have very clear goals as to why you want to breed. You need to know all the possible genetic health issues with your chosen breeds and you also need to know that bothe the dogs are well structured and clear of genetic diseases. They may both genetic carriers so genetic testing is always wise before breeding and hip and elbow screening.

    You need to know that the pups will be wanted and you need to raise and socialise the puppies properly for 8 weeks before letting them go to their new homes. you also need to be able to make some assessment of temperament so you make sure they are a good fit for their new homes.

    As Hyacinth points out you need to be aware of all the things that can go wrong during pregnancy and birth and have a healthy budget set aside for if things go wrong. They can and do and can cost thousands of dollars. I had a friend recently who lost the bitch and most of the litter during birth when the uterus ruptured, everything just went majorly wrong even under good vet care.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyacinth View Post
    Your bitch could die. That's one of the complications.

    One or more of the puppies could die.

    And if you do manage to have successful puppies - one or more of them could end up in the shelters and pounds - especially when they hit the doggy equivalent of rebellious teens at 7 months old. And given your breed combination - they'd have to be super nice with people, dolls (child test) and maybe cats to be put up for adoption. Most of this kind of mix just gets PTS.

    If you were in Victoria - I would say the other reason not to do it is their breed specific legislation which means that any dog can be removed and PTS based on appearance alone and not behaviour. Can take 2 years to appeal this decision and get the dog back.

    Have you read the sticky threads in here - there's a lot of detail about what can go wrong from the pregnancy to the birthing to the trying to find good homes for the puppies.

    So for your particular mix - if you breed a small female with a large male especially something with a really big head like a DDBx - you're probably looking at a c-section to have the puppies because there is a possibility their skulls will be too big to fit through her birth canal. Naturally this will be traumatic for the bitch and will affect her ability to feed her puppies - since there will be a gigantic healing wound where all the nipples are. So you may be hand feeding. How do you feel about getting up every two hours through the night for a couple of weeks?

    Normally I'd suggest you'd go and talk to the breeder of your dog but since you're not with the ANKC (you have mixed breeds involved here), I'd be guessing the person who bred your dog would not be available or interested in helping. If they are - great.

    But I think you'd be much better off if you're set on this mix - to have a large female and a small male. Do you seriously hate your bitch so much you'd risk killing her for this?

    The other thing I always want breeders to do is tests for basic problems in the breeds, hip problems, PRA (blindness), and any other preventable (by not pairing) genetic diseases that might be in the ancestor breeds.

    This is what a responsible breeder should be doing with their breeding program. It's great you came here and asked some questions. You should also ask your vet a lot of questions - especially about the mis match in size and what a C-section will cost and what can go wrong with that. Most British Bulldogs are born by C-section tho they are supposed to be trying to fix that in the breed so they can go back to natural births but the breed standard still has "head as large as possible" which means C-sections in practice.
    What is a responsible companion animal breeder? - RSPCA Australia knowledgebase
    I do feel your response in few areas were a bit aggressive and unnecessary to have been put in such a way. But I appreciate your point of view.

    I have taken the time to read the sticky thread regarding breeding and am aware from reading it what can be involved should there be complications in a many areas. I also I no way shape or form hate my dog and am offend that you even suggest such a thing, I love my dog and is why I have sort advise from somewhere like this forum in regards to breeding her.

    I would of course prefer to breed her with a male staffy however have been unable to find a suitable thus far which is why I was looking at this other male but wanted to advise or whether it would be suitable or not to breed her with a larger male. I in no way wish to put her at any unnecessary risk during the pregnancy, birthing or afterwards and certainly do not want to risk killing her as she is a much loved part my life and family.

    I rescued from a couple last year who found her when she was only 5months old so I unfortunately have no contact to the people who breed her originally to know what other breed she is, or anything about her parents in terms of genetics. Thus far though all other vets checks have been good and there are no underlying issues from her side in terms of hips, or eye problems.

    I also don't honestly intend to breed her during this heat as during her pregnancy and after the pups are born I may not be able to have to time needed to care for them properly and Im aware of this and the time and commitment that is required after reading the other thread; but I would like to possibly breed her on her next heat cycle if I can find a suitable male. I posted this thread first before reading the other one as I was sure how long it would take to get a response, and have as I said taken the time to read the entire post in the other thread regarding breeding, the time effort and money that is required in ensuring not only my dog has a safe pregnancy and birthing, but that the puppies are born and raised to be healthy and found good homes as well.

  5. #5
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    Thus far though all other vets checks have been good and there are no underlying issues from her side in terms of hips, or eye problems.
    You need to test both parent dogs for PRA at least but there are others - which means sending off some blood to get tested for DNA markers of some of these problems. If both Parent dogs have the genes for PRA and you pair them - then you get blind puppies. If only one parent has it - then you might be ok. Same sort of thing with hips. A hip score is usually done under general anaesthetic and xrays are taken of the hips. The newest version of this is called "pennhip" and only some vets have the equipment to do this.

    So having your vet check your bitches eyes and hips manually - isn't going to prevent these problems in the puppies. And there may be other things you can check for before you pair them up. Ask your vet about preventing genetic problems in puppies and what tests they consider advisable. If your vet doesn't understand the question - might be best to ask for a referral to a specialist.

    I just don't understand why anyone would want to breed a couple of cross breeds and risk so many problems for their dogs. The ANKC people are looking to make a better dog. You say you love your dog but I don't understand how making her have a litter shows this. My opinion of course, but I am not alone.

    And you got yours from rescue - ie an unwanted dog. So why would people want her puppies? Or if they did want bitsa puppies why wouldn't they go to a rescue organisation and get one of those rather from someone who deliberately made a litter of unwanted puppies. And your friends saying "maybe I'll take one" - is a No I wont but I'm too nice to say No. If they say definitely yes - you can count on about a third of those forgetting they agreed by the time your litter shows up.

    You would be the "archtypal back yard breeder" and a lot of people on forums like these are going to be a bit upset by that. So sorry if my response seemed a little harsh, it's pretty gentle compared to some responses you will get depending where you post.

  6. #6

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    Hi Elaine, and welcome to the forum!

    Good on you for asking advise before you make a decision.

    To answer your questions, Yes there can be complications. More often there is not, but given those breeds I personaly would estimate a one in 4 chance of some intervention needed.

    The bitch could have up to 18 pups of a large, special management dog type, best suited to only very responsible homes.
    You might be lucky to have a smaller litter, but that also increases the chance the pups will be bigger and more difficult to birth.

    The male, at 1 year old, will likely be able to do the job, but is not the dog he will be. Add maybe a couple of inches, bulk him up lots more and give him more desire to assert himself.
    What qualities are you looking to breed that makes you think this pair are the right dogs to do that? ( Serious question, no judgement ) Because its a huge committment for several months. It is costly, even if things don't go wrong, in time and money.

    Mum must be wormed before breeding, and in good physical condition through out. Her appetite will start to increase in the last weeks of pregnancy and keep increasing till the pups are weaned . Food must be high quality to keep up her condition. If not, she will loose condition badly to look like you are starving her and perhaps loose hair. Pups should be started on solids at 3 weeks and they will also need a high quality food, apetites doubling every week till 8 weeks.

    Before sale or after 6 weeks, pups will need to be vaccinated and microchiped. In N.S.W anyway. this will cost about $100. per pup, at least at my vets. That can easily be over $1000. per litter if theres 10 pups. That seems more common in crosses involving big breeds.

    They must be wormes every 2 weeks while little, and the price of that goes up with their weight.

    So, food and medical will be very costly for such big dogs. You will likely want very firm homes lined up before take the plunge and I promise you, if you find 8 now, it will be more like 3 maybe 5 by the time the pups arrive.

    To do it right is very demanding. Pups take a LOT of time as well as money. By the time the pups are 8 weeks old, they will be a full time job. Your responsibility is to make sure each of those lives you bring into the world finds a home that is worthy of them and their unigue needs, and that they will live up to your goals and the goals of their owners.
    You want people to take your pups, so you have to know what they are expected to offer. You want to do it well, so that those who have your pups can take pride in what they have, appreciate it, and look after it accordingly.
    Last edited by Strange fruit; 07-18-2015 at 08:05 PM.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elaine Fieth View Post

    Thus far though all other vets checks have been good and there are no underlying issues from her side in terms of hips, or eye problems.
    I am glad you are taking the trouble to find out more. I do have to say though that your vet can in no way tell from a physical examination if she has is a carrier of PRA (progressive retinol atrophy -terrible eye condition that results in blindness in some of the pups if 2 carriers are bred) or other genetic conditions that are recessive genes. It is only if she is mated to another carrier that the pups will be at risk, hence both parents need to be tested for any recessive genes that both breeds may carry. Hips and elbows need to b x-rayed by a vet that specialises in hip and elbow scans.

    I have seen young dogs euthaniased due to early onset PRA (parents were fine because they were merely carriers of these genes).

    We were going to do a working dog breeding (I run sheep). We had what we thought was a brilliant match, both parents great working dogs. When the genetic tests came back they were found to both be carriers of a genetic border collie eye disease so we had to scrap the mating. I also have a wonderful male working dog but when I had his hips x-rayed they did not score wll so I wouldnt use him either. The only vet that picked up that there may have been a hip problem was a specialist vet and he couldnt confirm without the scans.

    So it is is serious business. I have a family member who is a specialist vet and she tells me that many of the problems that she has to try and fix is due to poor breeding practices, costing thousands of dollars. I myself have a dog with elbow dysplasia from unscreened parents and she cost me near on $6000 and she will never have normal elbows.

    I find it upsetting that people breed without testing or understanding genetics because I have seen and experienced the results. So please do your homework on genetic conditions and be responsible if you decide to breed.

    This is not judgemental either just facts that you need to understand to reduce the risk of potential problems to the pups.

    There is another fact to consider, where I live rescues are simply overflowing with staffy crosses, it breaks my heart.
    Last edited by Kalacreek; 07-18-2015 at 07:46 PM.

  8. #8
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    Hi there,

    While your heart is in the right place - please do not breed your dog!

    There are so many unwanted dogs in shelters and pounds at the moment, more people are breeding dogs than those providing homes for them. Approximately 500 dogs are put down EACH DAY in Australia, there is absolutely nothing wrong with these dogs - they are simply without a home. Please don't add to these numbers even if you find great homes for all your puppies, for each puppy you sell, that's one less being adopted in a shelter and one more being euthanized because there isn't a home or room in a shelter for it. Staffys are one of the most common breeds in shelters.

    Like I said, your heart is in the right place and I have no doubt that you love your dog but we really don't need more dogs added into the 'system'. What is your reason for wanting to breed? The only people who should breed are licensed breeders with pedigree dogs who have spent years searching the best 'doggy match' and are trying to improve the breed.

    If you're looking for that 'satisfying' 'feel good' moment or if your dog is wanting a friend - please desex your beautiful girl, prevent risking any pregnancy/birth complications, and go visit your local shelter - I promise that adopting a dog will be way more satisfying than breeding your girl

    If you still want to breed - still please go and visit your local shelter, look into a lonely, cold, scared, sad, abandoned dogs eyes and if your conscious will still allow you to breed after that - go ahead!

  9. #9
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    "have been told that there could be some possible problems in breeding a larger male with my smaller female staffy and what to know if this is (a) true and (b) if there is what could they be?"

    Seriously, you have a malloser shape skull in both breeds, and yet, you are not aware of how this affects delivering a bitch?!!!

    "Im aware of this and the time and commitment that is required after reading the other thread." Seriously, you know about breeding from reading sodding threads?!!!

    For goodness sakes, (I get very upset reading your posts)
    Last edited by Hyacinth; 07-19-2015 at 08:53 PM. Reason: erm hard to educate someone if we abuse them.

  10. #10
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    Sorry guys, but im spitting my coffee, outraged - on behalf of every sodding staffie cross that currently is sitting in a pound in australia due to bad breeding.

    To the OP. (edit). And felt the 1st response was a little too aggressive perhaps? Lady, were you by me right now with your dog, id take the dog from you, and we'd run, far far away, where you could never reach her again. Aggressive response, to a proposition that is as sensible, as my 3yr old grandchild logic only.
    Last edited by Hyacinth; 07-19-2015 at 08:55 PM. Reason: education pls

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