What is your definition of a breeder of "Quality Dogs"?
I would say a person that breeds for good temperament and health using all the information and tests available to them.
I ask the question because on another forum there is an interesting discussion going on about scanning. Although most of the anti-scanners have owned and bred SM affected Cavaliers for well over a decade they still maintain that long time breeding experience is more important than health testing.
Also on the thread is an belittling description of health campaigners like me that believe cavaliers should be scanned before being mated, and that responsible breeders, as 'Guardians Of The Breed' should consider having their older dogs scanned to help the genome research.
"one minded, narrow minded, rabid people who want the health issues dealt with 'their way or no way' and the common denominator is they have have hardly bred anything or if they have, their achievement in producing quality dogs is minimal. "
I suppose it depends on your definition of 'quality', but some breeders of successful show cavaliers actively support research in every way possible and do their best to produce healthy dogs.
This outburst is posted by someone who is on record as rehoming a young SM dog way back in 1996, and who like every other cavalier breeder, has continued to produce badly affected dogs over the last few years.
No shame in that when SM could not be diagnosed, but one cannot say the same now that it is known that scanning and breeding to the SM guidelines will significantly reduce the number of SM affected cavaliers in a litter.
It seems that one poster believes that as she has owned very few asymptomatic affected dogs, SM symptoms are caused by environmental factors that were obviously not present in any of the many different households she has lived in over the years.
It is a shame that does not hold true for some of the dogs she has sold over the last few years.
This chimes in with the often expressed breeder belief that MVD is caused through pet owners over feeding their dogs, or over exercising them, or even not exercising them enough.
From my own point of view I resent the implication that owners of suffering dogs are somehow to blame for their symptoms. The problem is the cavaliers' predisposition to CMSM and MVD, if we tried to breed a healthy dog there would be no symptoms.
These breeders do not entertain the idea that we see the signs of pain because we are not in denial, we do not shut our dogs away out of sight in kennels or dog rooms, we do not dismiss scratching as ear mites, we do not make the excuse that a lame dog crying when touched has arthritis, we question when a dog will not walk happily on a lead and collar and perhaps the most obvious explanation of all........... Pet owners seldom rehome middle age, sick or elderly dogs, they keep and care for them.
It is now becoming more and more obvious that all high volume cavalier breeders have produced many SM affected dogs over the years, so breeder experience has failed the cavalier.
One breeder on the thread is adamant that for welfare grounds she will not risk scanning her 5-6 year old cavaliers under a general anaesthetic even if it would help the SM research.
Interestingly the latest BRS shows that she mated two elderly bitches to whelp just before their eighth birthdays despite the increased risk of needing a C-section to deliver such litters.
For one bitch this was their first litter, not something most concerned breeders would do to a bitch of that age.
Neither of these bitches appear to be eye tested and one presumes from the stated reluctance to MRI older dogs neither of them were scanned? I wonder what the buyers of these 'quality' puppies were told about health testing and just what certificates they saw?
Cavaliers......Faith, The Ginger Tank and Woody.
Japanese Chins.... Dandy, Benny, Bridgette and Hana.
Remembered with love......... Tommy Tuppence and Fonzi