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Old 01-14-2008, 10:15 PM   #1
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Default Breed Characteristics!

In one of the pit bull threads there were some comments that there are no genes that produce fighting dogs.

This got me thinking about breed characteristics and genetics. (not pits in particular)

Many of the recognized groups of every registry are divided by common characteristics except the miscellaneous, non sporting and toy groups.

In other words, if you bred a border collie to another dog in the herding group you'd still have puppies with herding instincts, sporting dogs would have pups with retrieving abilities, working dogs would maintain their working qualities, hounds their scenting or sighting abilities and terriers their tenacity.

No amount of training in the world would teach border collies to have "the eye", nor heelers to nip at heels while herding, or pointing dogs to point. These traits have to be passed on through the genes of the parents.

There could be some weird combinations of natural abilities passed on by breeding within the various groups. Such as breeding a scent hound to a sight-hound and producing pups that couldn't make up their minds whether to give chase or follow their noses.

These breed characteristic have been bred into each breed since the inception of the breed. They're continually enhanced by carefully breeding the best of the best to fit the required attributes of that breed for the job it was bred to do.

Those characteristics can also be enhanced through selective breeding or diminished through careless breeding.

So genetics absolutely does play a tremendous role in breed characteristics! IMO
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Old 01-14-2008, 10:42 PM   #2
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So genetics absolutely does play a tremendous role in breed characteristics! IMO
I agree with you 100% Applesmom
Great Post
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Old 01-14-2008, 11:01 PM   #3
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I have been trying for months to pass this information on to many making threads that causes problems.

Breeding certain breeds to better the breed cost money, time, knowledge, lines used and dedication to the breed one is bettering?

Not anything new in this thread as we have been round and round on this subject, to just breed the utmost best lines and dogs one can buy to reproduce fine quality litters. No big deal, just invest in the best to get the best!!!

I know how much I spend on my dogs and going to import two more, flights alone cost plenty. So, if anybody wants to better the breed you also have to continuely keep purchasing new updated lines also. You cannot keep breeding the same thing over n over.

Pedigrees are so highly important and how a Breeder crosses one dog to another for Quality litters takes alot of research, studying of lines, know your stock and what they produce or quit............period...!!!
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Old 01-14-2008, 11:43 PM   #4
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Pedigrees are so highly important and how a Breeder crosses one dog to another for Quality litters takes alot of research, studying of lines, know your stock and what they produce or quit............period...!!!
IM glad you put so much work into breeding,Great post.
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Old 01-15-2008, 02:07 AM   #5
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Isn't all of this just common sense...or should be. :P
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Old 01-15-2008, 03:15 AM   #6
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Isn't all of this just common sense...or should be. :P
It should be! That's why it's so important to do research into a breed before choosing one!
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Old 01-15-2008, 03:19 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by applesmom View Post
In one of the pit bull threads there were some comments that there are no genes that produce fighting dogs.

This got me thinking about breed characteristics and genetics. (not pits in particular)

Many of the recognized groups of every registry are divided by common characteristics except the miscellaneous, non sporting and toy groups.

In other words, if you bred a border collie to another dog in the herding group you'd still have puppies with herding instincts, sporting dogs would have pups with retrieving abilities, working dogs would maintain their working qualities, hounds their scenting or sighting abilities and terriers their tenacity.

No amount of training in the world would teach border collies to have "the eye", nor heelers to nip at heels while herding, or pointing dogs to point. These traits have to be passed on through the genes of the parents.

There could be some weird combinations of natural abilities passed on by breeding within the various groups. Such as breeding a scent hound to a sight-hound and producing pups that couldn't make up their minds whether to give chase or follow their noses.

These breed characteristic have been bred into each breed since the inception of the breed. They're continually enhanced by carefully breeding the best of the best to fit the required attributes of that breed for the job it was bred to do.

Those characteristics can also be enhanced through selective breeding or diminished through careless breeding.

So genetics absolutely does play a tremendous role in breed characteristics! IMO
I guess I missed that thread. I need to check around on here because I haven't had so much time to post or even view too many threads. Whoever said that was very incorrect.

All breeds are governed by genetics. Pit Bulls included. As you said they are selectively bred to enhance traits. They have these naturally and then it is up to people to train or guide them in what to do.

In regards to Pit Bulls I would think someone not well versed in them would say that. I've studied the history, the pedigrees, the bloodlines. Some of it is not so nice but its just a fact of the breed, like others who's history is in bloodsport. Its something one must accept even if they don't approve of it.

The main trait sought after and bred into fighting Pit Bulls is "gameness". Gameness is to complete a task despite the adversity, to keep going until it is done or until death. This is why they will fight to the death (if allowed of course) more often they would be picked up to save their life because they don't know when to quit. There are many breeds which show gameness in their task, but in Pit Bulls it was bred way beyond the normal determination and drive. It can be positive, it isn't only good for a fighting, it can be useful in legal competition or even helpful service or life saving jobs. On the other hand all the breeders did was breed out self preservation which is natural to most dogs. Most dogs fight for dominance and things like that and stop when one submits, tries to run away or is injured and down. Pit Bulls keep going, neither submitting. Submitting is natural, to know defeat, but a Pit Bull doesn't know this. So they have bred out the self preservation, which is needed for wild dogs to survive and found in most domesticated dogs. Its as simple as that. It is genetic.

If gameness was not genetic there wouldn't be a purpose to breed for it. It still shows through even though dogs are no longer bred for fighting, it might not be a strong as in fighting dogs but that depth isn't needed for legal things. Genetically speaking though this is why those that prove their gameness were bred and those which quit were not. When dogs were fought they were fought until one quit, the dog which quit would be culled. The dog which didn't would be bred. When the dogs were fighting if they were out of holds they would be taken to their corners and let go to resume fighting. A dog that didn't and just stood there was the loser. If a dog turned it would be taken to its corner to see if it wanted to continue the fight, as a turn is a sign that the dog might not want to fight. If neither dog quit whichever dog was picked up first might be considered the loser in a match but was still bred because the dog didn't quit and showed gameness. Sometimes a loser was considered to have shown more game then the winner. In those cases both would be considered breed quality as neither quit.

There are also cold dogs. A cold dog is a dog who won't fight back. First I should say dog aggression and gameness are two different things. They can certainly be naturally dog aggressive but this doesn't mean they are game. A dog must have a fight drive in order to fight to test the gameness. Some people confuse this as I've heard people who think their dog aggressive Pit is "so game". In reality many old timers though a fight crazy dog was actually going to be a quitter (called a cur). Maybe there is a some truth to that as many dogs are dog aggressive as a bluff and they don't really want to fight. In certain instances they are trying to avoid a confrontation by putting on a show. Pit Bulls are usually dog aggressive without outward signs, no lunging, no barking, no growling, no snarling or at least show these signs very minimally. Normally they just have an intense alert look in their eyes, whine, wag their tail and get excited, some show little excitement and just focus on the other dog and are stiff. This behavior is shown in other breeds like hounds which sometimes whine or protection dogs which whine or scream for the decoy. A dog can be game without being very dog aggressive. They have a fight drive but will also play with other dogs in certain cases. They will fight when its time to and be fine with certain other dogs not wanting to fight every dog they see.
Back to cold dogs, more often then not cold dogs were bred because they were not proven to be curs. They were not proven be game either but since they lacked a fight drive they couldn't be tested so many were used for breeding. Some people would cull cold dogs since the gameness was in question but many bred them to see what they produced.

Other times dogs were not actually cold but just "turn on" late. As in become dog aggressive later. Pit Bulls usually start to gain an interest in fighting as they near adulthood, the age does range usually around a 1-2yrs of age. Some might be early starters when they are just pups. In some cases though dogs might seem cold but if the person waits the dog turns on at 3 or 4yrs. A cold dog would be one that is cold its entire life. Loposay's Buster is an example of this, he was bred and produced several champions, winners and game dogs. Some dogs like CH Honeybunch seemed to be cold as she wouldn't fight at 18 months she had no interest at all. She didn't show a fight drive at that time nor would she fight back when bit. Honeybunch is a well known APBT that is seen in the pedigrees of many dogs today. She wasn't culled but waited on and proved both game and to be the top producing female as far as fighting dogs go.

Since gameness and dog aggression/fight drive are genetic those would be genes that produce a fighting dog. There is also the fact that certain bloodlines carry certain ability as it pertains to fighting. Also parent pass certain abilities to offspring that relate to fighting as well. Some of these things also come into play in legal activity but the fact is that it is still genetic.

This would be things like mouth, some APBTs have a very soft mouth. That dog might not bite very hard, may usually not break the skin of the other dog. If it is game however and doesn't quit it would be bred and some of its offspring will show this trait and in some cases a bloodline that is formed around it would be soft mouth dogs. Others have a harder bite and again this passes on to offspring and into a bloodline. Some of those dogs gameness is questioned if they don't prove it but win because the other dog gets picked up quick so it doesn't get terribly injured or if its quits from being bit hard.

Intelligence is also genetic, this shows in fighting dogs, of course it shows in daily activity how smart they are but it could also show while fighting. Some dogs would just fight, others would think while fighting and figure what they are doing, a lot of people think dogs are not that smart but they really are in many things they do. They make some type of decision.

Some dogs were head dogs, some were chest or stifle dogs, meaning that is the area they liked to bite while fighting. Their offspring also do the same in many cases and sometimes a bloodline is known for this due to genetics.

Wrestling ability was also genetic as some dogs really lacked it and others were great at it.

Many things in dogs are genetics, working with purebred dogs I have really seen personalities, quirks and temperament traits be passed on from one generation to the next or within a bloodline. Genetics is why breeds have certain traits and why bloodlines have specific traits within them. This includes Pit Bulls and other fighting dogs. Although I don't know a lot about the other fighting breeds, I've studied a lot of breeds in general but known as in depth as the APBT.

Last edited by Spicy_VV; 01-15-2008 at 03:21 AM..

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Old 01-15-2008, 03:51 AM   #8
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Well written and informative post Spicy.
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