Ethics as defined as a major branch of philosophy, encompassing right conduct and good living..In dealings with morality...distinguishing between that which is good and that which is evil...between right and wrong human reactions. In a world that seems to become more fast paced each and every day, we loose a sense of accomplishment by virtue. A persons financial gains, or social standing tend to narrow the focus on how we need to relate to the world and how one should achieve goals.
It is much easier to take the elevator instead of the stairs..
You can see this in everyday life and it holds true in much of the dog world. People searching for ways to gain accomplishment with as little effort as possible. and in striving for this gain be it social status or financial we are totally distracted from our values..if indeed we still have any. In the world of dogs we are all striving for the same gain. Success that is reflected in our breeding programs , show results, and to some financial status. We as breeders and showman of our chosen breed have taken a silent vale to protect and enhance the life of our four legged friends.
To me I chose to take that oath with my beloved Chinese crested dogs, now almost 15 years
ago. I am here here...today...despite all the unethical practices I have encountered I am on the other end of this pen and paper asking a question to all of those out there reading this...
What happens when people who have chosen to love and cherish this breed...now choose to abandon responsibility? What happens when one puts his or her own needs and vain goals ahead of the best interest of the breed?
Lets explore some examples...When I first started my research into the life of AKC events..it became my knowledge that dog shows were developed to determine
the best of the breeding stock... that these prime examples were the best of the best. They held true to the standard..and there for should be breed to benefit the breed..
Is this a truth? or is it something we tell ourselves but we now know is a dim light in the dark? Does the crested represented in the ring really stand for quality? breeding? or does it stand as a social marker? a place saver...
Now I am not throwing rocks at each and every person reading this as I know many exhibitors that are trying their best to hold true to the breed and better it..
To each of you a humble thank you...but to those who are becoming agitated with this article I ask you to reason with yourself and ask why am I becoming angry? I am only bringing some well known truths to light...just because the show in reality has nothing to do with quality doesn't mean it doesn't have influence. The show dogs that are being handled do have influence on breeding and on perception.
PERCEPTION - the process, act or faculty of perceiving...recognition and interpretation based on memory. The photographic evidence appears before you...truth as far as one perceives it to be. The dog is publicized and stands as an example of the breed.. its
"win" photo becomes the breed standard, and breeders try to breed to its truth...if it won it must be of quality or is it? Ever heard of three dimensional? where is the other two sides..suddenly a memory a snap shot win becomes the gospel and all strive to abide by it..setting a side the other dimensions... In the photo...it looks appealing, perfect...but in reality....it walked hackney....its movement choppy....crossing over in the front.. it's tail so tight you can't pull it down with out a spring loaded reaction..it's hair ironed strait to hide the poodle coat...its body shaved down to appear hairless, and behind all that in the depths of it....PRA affected...luxating lenses, bad patella's...need I go on...
Now some for these faults people can live with some are worse than others..this is for you to decide...It is a question of your ethics..what's most important to you..
NO DOG IS PERFECT! all have faults and we weigh which ones are more acceptable and each person decides differently.. but we must strive to make these faults disappear.. not just accept them..This is what some choose to breed...a perfect one dimensional photograph... Any one can take a picture only a few can create a work of art...
What now has happened to the values and ethics needed to function productively in the dog world and at what cost have we sat them aside for our own foolish gains.. and to whom are these gains truly acknowledged? What percentage of people actively show dogs? a small percentage compared to the over all population... You have managed to gain social standing and power within a small controlled group of people..you are now on top... 4 in the top 10 your name is all over the magazines and everyone sees you out in the front row...
At what cost? have you truly helped this breed? or have you selfishly used them to gain glory and fill a need for self worth?
Let's weigh the truth...
The hand to your right holds your accomplishments...you have succeed in producing many top
winners...people admire your dogs from all countries..they are wanting your lines...they are sending you financial gains..When people think of a Crested they think of your Kennel...that one dimensional photo we talked about..
The left hand... your dogs are producing PRA and luxating lenses...their patella are shot...and they are in pain from genetic problems...by the age of 5 many are completely blind and worse yet many are being put down... but hey you won your on top...this month your a winner...
Unfortunately this is what is happening with such a drive to succeed at any cost, we tend to push aside our values if the results will benefit our goals. WE as DOG PEOPLE true protectors of our breed can not afford to put success and greed over what is best..
Our country is seeing in my opinion a moral decline...a personal plea to all that own this wonderful breed or any breed...search your conscience do not deviate from the standard to suit your personal whim...do not lax in genetic testing for a beautiful dog with such known health issues does no good to the over all development of our breed. Next time you enter the ring take a moment to reflect on this beautiful breed. Is this an ethical representation? Will it do the breed justice? Can it add to the gene pool in a positive way?
A message to all whom judge... You have a most important job... in your hands lay the ability to choose representation of the breed in front of you.. We all know it is almost impossible to get a dog that fits the standard perfectly, but they should be getting better all the time...When you choose a dog to receive AKC points you are saying to the "dog world"
its breeders and it's followers... "direct your breeding program this way..take note of this dog"...please make sure it is one worthy of such an honor the honor of adding to the goal of perfection, not to personal taste or to favor..
Ethics we must have them in all aspects of the show/breeding world..Our judges must live by them abiding by the standard not by favor of handlers or friends or by trend... Our breeders must search it out in their breeding programs through health screening and honest evaluation of their stock...they must also show the willingness to speak honestly to newbies...they must posses the ability to be truthful in their business dealings backing their lines with contracts and guarantees...not empty words...and spoiled tongues that speak harsh betraying words...words of untruth all for the purpose of climbing a social ladder..Be warned though all that goes up must come down...like a yo-yo effect... you may climb that
ladder and all may see you at the top...but if you spill forth lies and deception none will remember your a "WINNER" your kennel name will begin its decline as people will see the results of your deception and begin the hard task of eliminating your bloodline due to your own greed...your greed to be known has become a heart-wrenching journey for those striving to improve the breed...for this reason WE MUST NOT BACKSLIDE.
Again no matter how pretty,flashy,typey an unsound dogs an unsound dog...what's worse than an unsound dog an unsound dog full of health defects.. and who wants a pretty but crippled dog?We need to take a 3D picture...lets paint the ideal crested with our standard... We as breeders need to be concerned with these growing issues...Among these issues and all in some way dealing with ethics lies the long controversial debate of hair...in my opinion we are not only loosing the hairless gene to a infested gene pool but losing structure and
soundness..one not in relation to the other....but we are loosing the ability to move freely..there seems to be a lack in reach and drive...some of this responsibly lies on the breeders other on the judges who overlook the graceful movement of a less flashy
dog to replace it with a flashy dog of type that's out at the elbow and has a bad rear...All of this will never compensate for soundness...it doesn't take long to ruin a breed when breeding in bad qualities. I have heard it can take 6 generations to breed out such a structural flaw...so why breed it in?
Back to the subject of hair recently in the show ring I have heard people confessing that their hairless was indeed a puff shaved down...one such dog was even given the rightful name as "Puffy" but Puffy gave the appearance of being hairless...shaved down and naired..the judges themselves pondering the thought of interviewing his hairdresser... an ethic question??? I have respect for those admitting to such acts..but if you try to deceive the judges and the by standers by with holding the truth then you should question your ethics...There is nothing in our standard that says one can not shave a puff as a hairless..there for judges should judge according to the best structure in that ring...not according to hair or no hair for that matter...One quality does not define this breed...but many quality's....
I would like to say that I am not against those breeding some flash into their lines..I love the look of nice furnishings but I personally will never breed for flash unless the flash comes with the whole package ....great structure and that beautiful poetic reach and drive....the same as for the THL..I love the fact of the hairless dog...But I will never breed for one trait....the trait of just no body hair...and disregard structure....
It is also my opinion that health and structure need to be addressed as major issues....my concern is with what I am seeing in the breed.. breeders are setting aside all ethics both in the ring and out of the ring...stepping on people with lies and deceit ... to accomplish their own goals with no regard to those they harm...most of all the breed they claim they love..
These are all issues of responsible breeders and ethics...you cant have a responsible breeder without one holding true to ethics nor can you have a good judge if they don't apply ethics when judging...
Ethics...truly a great question to ask. What is wrong with admiring a dog bred to standard..with no known health concerns.. Successful breeding is that of every
generation coming out better than the last..setting goals with your bitches and your stud dogs and working toward them ..
Promoting a non-standard dog will leave your mark for future breeders to contemplate, do you want your kennel name to be remembered as a help or a hindrance? Do you want to be responsible "ethical" breeder or spiral in your own denial.
Remember any one can take a picture...it takes an artist to create a masterpiece...
Any breeder can breed a flashy dog...Any breeder can breed for the THL....not every breeder can create a sound healthy dog that conforms to the standard.
In closing I would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who have made the effort to better this wonderful breed...though my article is harsh in pointing out the ethical problems this breed is undergoing...not all breeders have an ethic problem..it is just frustrating to see a decline in morality....and with such a decline a cause and effect...meaning the breed suffers...Here not to long ago I read an article in the chronicle talking about dog show sportsmanship...and newbies... it's truth still rings loud and clear...why would any new owner want to show if they are greeted with harsh words and inferior dogs winning....if judges put up favors or pick type not standard? it is by far too expensive a hobby to take
up when they could go shopping instead...
It is much easier to take the elevator instead of the stairs..
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