Role of Inbreeding in Selective Breeding.

By Abhai Kaul.

To clearly define selective breeding: choosing parents with particular characteristics to breed together and produce offspring with more desirable characteristics.

it should be safe to assume all populations of purebred dogs come from inbreeding. It’s is a part in the process of selective breeding where you’re attempting to concentrate the traits that one admires from the smattering of genes from dogs that pre existed before the German shepherd before the breed’s ancestors were selected for certain traits that make the GSD what it is, and you still see some of those traits coming down. (Whites, long coats to name a couple). This is what is done to establish a population of animals with predictable, inheritable characteristics.

Line breeding involves breeding together more distant relatives that are a few generations apart. This way a sensible breeder can try to incorporate the traits he’s looking for in a subset of the population without having the perceived risk of bringing problems to the surface that might be lurking beneath the surface in the shape of deleterious genes that would be detrimental to the whole exercise.

Humans have selectively bred Agro crops and animals for thousands of years to create desirable traits in them: whether it’s corn, broccoli or your dairy cows. Dogs are no different. So this isn’t a new revolutionary idea where our ancestors have created the Afghan hound, the Neapolitan mastiff, the Tibetan spaniel and more recently the German shepherd dog in this manner.

To personalize this, when I sought Ucon out as stud dog, it wasn’t just because Ucon was a working line outcross. My aim is to selectively breed physically and mentally resilient German shepherd dogs that follow a certain familial type.

Ucon happened to come from a family of dogs that were not only high performing dogs but also physically resilient, agile dogs, that have had great longevity and activity in their senior years. Furthermore, they’re dogs with high pack drives and stable nature around people, other dogs and children. These traits I very much wanted to maintain in my dogs and didn’t want to bring in a dog that would negate those great qualities that I had nurtured in my program for so many years.

This otherwise discreet trait is one we certainly notice when it’s absent.

I was asked by multiple people, “oh, did you go to Ucon because he had ‘drive’?”

This is a catch all blanket statement people like to associate with one side and dissociate with the other. Jade comes from a family of very drivey dogs. I’d venture to say her mother motte had one of the best grips of any German shepherd I met irrespective of bloodlines. She was also a very mentally stable female who could walk into any situation self assured.

Jade’s father also had excellent hunt drive and ball drive and loved bitework. She, like her siblings, inherited these traits from her parents in spades, and in my opinion, had a forehand and proportions that I felt comfortable breeding with Ucon.

You can read about my thoughts on the genealogy here:

The resulting puppies had some outlying traits since their whelping box days. They had excellent activity and fed very readily. Only in a few days, the puppies could get up and stumble walk across the whelping box. By their second week, they had already started climbing out of the whelping box. These pups had excellent musculature and very tight ligaments and could move effortlessly.

Someone saw Tabasco when she was 9 months old and joked if she had Pit-bull blood in her due to her agility, muscle tone and muscular built.

She and her siblings have been very quick learners and intuitive dogs. It’s almost like they can read your mind. One of them is a service dog. She has been an excellent tracker and has pronounced hunting drives and ball drive. More importantly, she has been a great companion dog, and easy to have around other dogs and at home.

To breed her, I wanted to make sure the male was an outstanding representation of what I was always looking for in a male: a striking dog with a stable temperament and an outgoing demeanor. After much deliberation, I chose Kayos von Nummer-Eins for the above reasons. They produced a very even litter with pups that had outstanding anatomical characteristics but were also mentally very well appointed dogs. They were easy to train, were full of drive and most importantly easy to live with. There’s one dog that’s started training just a few months back with a first time dog owner and he already has his BH and is excelling in bitework. He’s also a local celebrity in his neighborhood and poses for pictures with people often.

As I continue to breed dogs like Tabasco, I prioritize maintaining a balance of desirable physical attributes and mental stability. The success of these breeding efforts is evident in the performance, temperament, and companionship qualities of the offspring.

In conclusion, the role of inbreeding in selective breeding is crucial in developing and maintaining the desirable traits of purebred dogs. Through careful selection and informed breeding decisions, we can concentrate favorable characteristics while managing potential genetic risks. My experience with Ucon or Lupin and the resulting puppies and the generations thereafter highlights the importance of thoughtful breeding practices to achieve a balance of physical attributes, mental stability, and overall resilience. By continuing to prioritize these qualities, we can ensure the future generations of German Shepherds remain exceptional companions and working dogs, embodying the best of the breed.

Selective breeding is not a revolutionary concept but rather a time-honored practice that, when executed with knowledge and care, yields remarkable results. The Mile

Markers in my breeding program are a testament to the meticulous selection and dedication to preserving and enhancing our breed.

Tabasco expression
Tabasco von Nummer-Eins
Ucon vom Patiala (Tabasco’s sire)
Tabasco’s dam: Jade v Nummer-Eins
Kayos and Tabasco v Nummer-Eins
Kayos and Tabasco son

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