|Posted by bwanasrhodesianridgebacks on September 29, 2011 at 6:25 PM|
It's that time once again when we begin to rally our support network and try to create puppies! We breed so far less often than most Breeders. Our last pups are nearly 2 years old and in fact will be almost exactly 2 when this litter will be born. We breed to continue our line, when we want a new puppy for ourselves and only when we know for a fact that we have some of the best breeding stock available. Heath Checked and Tested, Titles on one end or both.
Some breedings cause us a bit more concern. The girls are now 5 years old, Zion is 4. While we will stand a Stud for breeding well into his later years we will only allow our girls to breed into their 6th year. There is much controversy over that thinking as many of the larger kennels are comfortable breeding a bitch up to her 9th year. We simply don't agree. 6 to the 7th year is enough. After that they are eligible to compete in Veterans . We believe the risks to the Mom do not out weigh the possible positives so we are coming into the wire for the date when both Dreamer and Caine will be spayed. I would never 'flip a ridge" at the possibility of the problems that happen with older girls kept intact. ( cancers, pyeometria and much more).
Caine is exactly one week into finding her first spots of blood. Since our girls are fanatically clean there is always the possibility that she is further along than we know. Same with Dreamer who is only 3 days into her spotting. We have opted to use heavy Vet care for trying our litters. Yes I said Litters. It is a first for our kennel to breed 2 girls with in 10 days +/- of each other. Caine will be bred via surgical implant and Dreamer via Artificial Insemination. Zion will stand at stud to contribute his most important part of making babies. We began testing Cain on Progesterone this past Tuesday, she was already higher in numbers than expected so chance are really good she had been in a "silent heat" for several days. From her first test on Tuesday to her second now moved up to Wednesday she doubled her numbers! Putting her squarely at the breeding line.
Zion had been tested earlier this month. Normally we would not have the expense of testing the male's count, however last year Zi ( pronounced Zigh) and our nearly 12 year old male, Kota, got into a rumble where Zi, while trying to avoid a fight with Kota, the old man, was rolled over and had his "manly parts" tap danced on. Kota no longer tolerates intact males but that is a story for another time. Back to Z, He was only producing about 15% of the count he should have been, rendering his breeding attempt useless. This time we took him in to see Dr Langston who collected him and sent off the sample for evaluation. He hit it out of the ball park ! Well over 75% with zero atypical's. ( insert applause here :0} ) Great recovery ! Knowing Zi already has a gorgeous litter on the ground and knowing how much his puppies are loved we knew we wanted to take him to both the girls. It minimizes surprises down the road. Zion lays in his crate crooning softly to his girls hoping one of them will convince us to allow them a play date outside. Many people only breed via natural cover. If this were a year ago I would be going that route as well however as I mentioned time is an issue with the girls now so we want to maximize our chances.
Dreamer was Zi's mate on our last litter , the "Oops" litter. We had wanted a breeding between them however had planned to hold off . Because of school programs we hired a sitter to let dogs go in and out while we were at schools and work. Great plan except our Dog sitter had a migraine one day and instead of calling in sent her teen aged color blind son to let dogs in and out. The instructions to not let the girl with the RED collar out with either male fell on deaf ears thus an unexpected breeding! Our first in 28 years in the breed! sigh..... We are now planing an A.I on Dreamer. We will establish her progesterone levels and following them closely then, when she is ready we will collect Zion and inseminate.
If you have never helped in breeding dogs naturally you know it is not as simple as just turning both in the yard and hoping they want what you want. We have seen a male who was torn from stem to stern by a reluctant bitch, because the humans turned them out to do what comes naturally. It resulted in a prolonged recovery and his having to be nuetered. It was frankly amazing he was not put to sleep the injury was so terrible. Dogs can fight, freak out and much more when it comes to breedings, so supervision is required. However even that does not come easily. An ardent male happy to do his "job" is tunnel visioned into one outcome. The male is often more enthusiastic than accurate. The female may or may not be willing to co operate and panic. Getting involved often leaves the helpers covered in bruises. With planing, We can avoid the hassle of holding an eager male and a possibly unhappy female in place.
How does that commercial go...the tests and treatment for the surgical implantation will run about $550.00, the AI nearly $600.00 since you repeat it 3 times ! ( When dedicated to having a wonderful litter you don't spare the help or vet care. ) Seeing the faces of a family who are now complete with the fur child they have longed for ? Priceless
Thank God how ever we have a wonderful Vet who gives us a small break on the fees! Since they will do the exams and then after care, all pup care from dew claws to go home exams , health certs and shots they make a nice living off of Ethical Breeders. BYBs and Millers do not have this kind of overhead. But then they don't have our kind of puppies.