So you want to breed your dog?

<> The most beautiful dog in the world is the one who looks at you with love. <>

I am glad that you "think" your dog has good genes. But given the many, many dogs who end up in shelters and euthanized, if is very important to think many times before breeding an animal. Above all, you must have some sort of objective evaluation of your dog. Notice my first tagline — each of us knows she or he has the most beautiful dog in the world. Unfortunately, kennel blindness is the most prevalent kind of visual impairment.

So, before you even think of breeding your boy:

What does your breeder think of him as a potential stud whose genes will improve the breed? Was he sold to you as a pet quality dog, or as a show prospect? What are the most prevalent genetically transmitted illnesses the Canaan has? (Yes, even the Kelev Canaani, so recently a pariah dog surviving by luck and strength, has health problems that can be passed on.) How are his hips and elbows? He may be too young to have X-rays certified by the Orthopedic Foundation of America, indicating that he does not have hip or elbow dysplasia, but if you are seriously considering breeding, you might want to have preliminary X-rays done. Eyes? Heart?

How well does he conform to the breed Standard?

What kinds of obedience and performance titles do his parents and collateral ancestors have? Have you started him on formal obedience? (The ideal, after all, is to have a well-balanced dog, meaning one with titles at both ends.) Even though the Israeli Kennel Club has a slightly different requirements for the various obedience titles, if your boy is a recent import, the IKC titles will tell a lot.

Now I assume you do not want to breed your boy to just any bitch who comes along, so you will want to be approached by the owners of quality bitches. The best way to get your boy noticed is to participate in trials and/or conformation shows, so he is known. After all, despite being essentially an old breed, the Canaan is very new here in the States, and each and every breeding will have a major impact on the development of the breed here. Ergo, you want to breed only the best to the best.

Meanwhile, train your dog, enjoy him, socialize him, and if possible join the breed club at both local and national levels. It is amazing the amount of information you can obtain about breed idiosyncrasies from those who are more experienced in the breed.

Hatzlacha rabah!

avrama & baruch
academicfactor at earthlink dot net

<> The most beautiful dog in the world is the one who looks at you with love. <>

5 Feb 2004 | Copyright © 2004 Avrama Gingold. Used with permission.