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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
To those looking to get involved in breeding..what do you look for in a mentor?

Is it:

length of time in the breed?

amount of litters produced?

show titles produced?

working titles produced?

proximity to yourself?

none of the above?

all of the above?
 

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If I was going to get into breeding I would have to say all of the above except amount of litters produced. Someone could pump out a ton of litters and not know sh*t while others who have only produced a few produce outstanding dogs.
 

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kogeki said:
If I was going to get into breeding I would have to say all of the above except amount of litters produced. Someone could pump out a ton of litters and not know sh*t while others who have only produced a few produce outstanding dogs.
I agree, it's not the number of litters, but the number of quality dogs in those litters.
 

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I would be more interested in how much they know about lines, how to pick the right dog/bitch pair.
How much experience they actually have in breeding and whelping..not the number of litters they have had.
I probably whelp 7 or more litters a year. But haven't had a litter of my own in 2 years. I also do a number of AI's each year.
I would want to know if they believe in and do health testing. Depending on the breed I would want them active in working,showing and/or trialing. it would be handy if they were close enough for hands on help..but one of my original mentors lived 1200 km. away
 

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Lisa said:
To those looking to get involved in breeding..what do you look for in a mentor?

Is it:

length of time in the breed?

amount of litters produced?

show titles produced?

working titles produced?

proximity to yourself?

none of the above?

all of the above?
I think the 1st thing that I would do is work and show after I fell like I have been around long enough to know who is producing temp., ability, and structure. I would start to work with them, or if there is a huge distance gap at the very least start to pick their brain. After I have worked/shown for several years. Then mentored with someone that breed who consistantly ( not frequently) Temp. Work.& Stucture, for few more years maybe several more years. My next step would be the right dog, but I think that you should know what to do & how to do it right before you even begin to looking for a dog to breed. I would be most concerned with the dogs they produced, period!! Titles are great but I do not think that they are a panacea. Distance is not really a big factor if the best is in LA then that is who I want to consult with, we have so many lines of communication now I think that you could always talk to someone. I see no reason that you can not work with one breeder that is really good close by and consult with the best far away. Number of litters, tricky, tricky, becuase the more you go around the block the more you learn HOWEVER you just can't do it right if you have too many irons in the fire. I think that I would seriously consider how many litters they have had bc of the puppy peddler aspect or if it was done properly experience. If you work with a guy that has had one litter that produced some great dogs, well, that could be chance. But if you work with the guy that has been doing it for 30 years and had 15(?, pulled that number out of my rear) and he has produced strong dogs consistantly then obivously he is the way to go. Titles sure titles are great but Iwant to know that breeder is producing what I want in a dog. ( :lol: At that point I would know more) Where is he strong? WHere is he week? Is producing great workers with a somewhat crappy temp? :-k Are his dogs all bark and no bite? Do they look good with poor hips? I could go on, this is why Tora is headed to the Vet in the AM!! It makes my head hurt to think about it!! All you breeders out there (the ones that do it right =D> too much for this girl!)
 

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intelligence, compassion and caring. morals and ethics . passion, be it for training or bettering the breed thru breeding.
an understanding and willingness to listen and learn. to address my questions and help me understand the whys and hows and take into consideration, others point of view (nobody knows everything, free exchange of ideas helps everybody learn more )
i have seen alot of damage done by "mentors" who refused to acknowledge that they "didn't know" the answer to a question/problem.

i have had (and still have) some incredible people that have been willing to mentor me and i appreciate each and every one of them for the knowledge they have imparted. i hope to learn new things till the day i die

:)
 

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length of time in the breed? .. ..

Missleeding question do to the fact theres some differnt ways to look at it ..but here gose ...#1 show's comitment to breed and experiance POSSIBLY :!: ?.. but with out spending qualty time with person and there program to find out there goles ethics no way of knowing what there all about /.#2... Could just be in it for the $$ with no goles ethics ?? ..So also the answer would have to be spend qualty time with person to find out what there all about to make that call ..

amount of litters produced?. ..

Also has more than one answer are you talking per year or in the life span of the kennel ??? if per year than that has nothing to do with my desiciton ..if in the life time of the kennel than thats better you can trase back the dogs produced and find out what you need to know..... But if it's just the amount of litters from the breeder than . there's more than one answer....#1 as long as all the litters are from PROVEN , TESTED .HEALTY, BREEDING STOCK ...dosent matter if it's 2-6 litters ayear from 2-6 bitches .... or 1 litter every 3 years from one soild combo ...

show titles produced? .....

This show's me dedication to the breed and a love for SHOW'S to have many differnt show titels ..BUT also dosent prove they have heath tested proven dogs they should have in a breeding program ...BUT'S A GOOD ONE :wink:

or you could mean that the show quality dog's HAVE BEEN PRODUCED BY the breeder in that case this is a better indacation the breeder spends more time placing his dogs with show homes as aposed to pet homes witch i like :wink: ..

working titles produced?

This also show's me dedication to the breed and a love for WORKING THERE DOG'S to have many differnt WORKING titels ..BUT also dosent prove they have heath tested dogs they should have in a breeding program ...BUT'S A GOOD ONE ASWELL :wink:


or you could mean that the WORK quality dog's HAVE BEEN PRODUCED BY the breeder in that case this is a better indacation the breeder spends more time placing his WORK QUALITY dogs with people willing to work the dog to see it's potencel as aposed to pet homes witch is a possiably a waist of a good dog :wink: ..


proximity to yourself?

ALLTHOUGH WOULD BE NICE as i dont like to travil but not a nesseity ! 8)
 

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attitude said:
intelligence, compassion and caring. morals and ethics . passion, be it for training or bettering the breed thru breeding.
an understanding and willingness to listen and learn. to address my questions and help me understand the whys and hows and take into consideration, others point of view (nobody knows everything, free exchange of ideas helps everybody learn more )
i have seen alot of damage done by "mentors" who refused to acknowledge that they "didn't know" the answer to a question/problem.

i have had (and still have) some incredible people that have been willing to mentor me and i appreciate each and every one of them for the knowledge they have imparted. i hope to learn new things till the day i die

:)
I'll go with this answer. Very, very true, no matter what these are:

length of time in the breed?

amount of litters produced?

show titles produced?

working titles produced?

proximity to yourself?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Interesting answers so far.

One thing I definitely agree with is what Thom said about amount of litters. In fact, the "dog people" I respect the most have had very few litters. I know several people who have a decade plus involvement in AB's or working dogs/AB's and have had zero litters . One of my biggest mentors has had 1 litter in 10 years in the breed. A couple other people I respect immensely and have been taught a great deal from have had no litters. These people all have great knowledge of the AB breed and working dogs in general. Many of my questions regarding the breed or working dogs in general are directed to them. You don't have to have experience putting 2 dogs together to know what a good dog is and to know what the good dogs of the past were.

I like a person with very high standards.

I like a person who is not afraid to admit the flaws in their dogs and aren't shy about washing out dogs from breeding programs.

I look for people who are willing to cull when need be.

I look for a person who places the majority of puppies they produce rather than sell them and aren't afraid to keep a whole litter back for themselves for a real good evaluation. That is someone who cares about they are doing! I like a person who is involved in a breed or dogs in general because of the sheer love and passion, not the money or prestige.

I like a person with a REAL appreciation and understanding of what constitues a good dog and of course a good WORKING dog, not necessarily earned a crap load of titles, although that does show commitment level and it does count for something.

I look for people who will be honest with me about MY dogs. A person not afraid to point out a flaw in my dog if I happen to not notice it.

The thing that turns me off the most about some people is when all they do is talk up their dogs and say how great they are, without ever mentioning any faults. Big red flag for me because no dog is perfect! In fact, most dogs out there are NOT breed worthy and have many flaws.

I honestly think there a some people out there who when looking for a breeding mentor, purposely look for breeders who don't have the bar set real high. This way the standard they are shown is low enough that it becomes easily attainable, and they are able to justify their own breeding ways.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
With all the breeders and wannabe breeders on this board you would think there would be many more replies than this.

What's up everyone? Like Alpha and Attitude mentioned, this could be a great topic for discussion but people are shying away. Do people just not know what to look for in a mentor or do none of the breeders on this board even bother looking for one at all? Whats up??
 

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Lisa said:
To those looking to get involved in breeding..what do you look for in a mentor?

Is it:

length of time in the breed?

amount of litters produced?

show titles produced?

working titles produced?

proximity to yourself?

none of the above?

all of the above?

If I was getting into breeding, I would want to spend a long time talking with and learning from a VERY experienced person, or people. But I don't think I would follow one persons advice, I like to talk and learn from alot of different people, and take the information I like from everyone.

The length of time in the breed is very important, it shows commitment to the breed, to make the breed better. The amount of litters doesn't mean a thing, there is alot of people that I would respect and could learn alot from, that have never had a litter. Then there is the big breeders, like Joshuas, Boyds, White Bandits, breeders that have a very high demand, because of the quality of their dogs, there would be ALOT to learn from those breeders as well.

To me, Show titles are important, but not as much as a working title. I actually don't care as much about the title, as the fact the dog has proven its self to be a real dog, with good nerves, great temperment. Alot of crappy dogs can get by with any kinda title. Of course I still like a "pretty" dog, but that just isn't as important as a stable well rounded dog.

To me the PERFECT breeder would be somebody who takes alot of time and care to be absolutely positive that their dogs are breed worthy. They know the faults in their dogs, and aren't afraid to say that their dog just isn't quite good enough to be bred, and will alter and rehome them. I am EXTREMELY picky of dogs I think would be breed worthy, and I think that is how a good reputable breeder should be. Also its way to easy to aquire these dogs. You can call up almost every breeder, even the reputable ones, dazzle them with some bullsh*t and they will sell you a dog. Very few of them actually ask for references, do a home check. I think it is absolutely mandatory, that the person buying the dog has a vet that can give them a reference.
 

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BanterBull said:
attitude said:
intelligence, compassion and caring. morals and ethics . passion, be it for training or bettering the breed thru breeding.
an understanding and willingness to listen and learn. to address my questions and help me understand the whys and hows and take into consideration, others point of view (nobody knows everything, free exchange of ideas helps everybody learn more )
i have seen alot of damage done by "mentors" who refused to acknowledge that they "didn't know" the answer to a question/problem.

i have had (and still have) some incredible people that have been willing to mentor me and i appreciate each and every one of them for the knowledge they have imparted. i hope to learn new things till the day i die

:)
I'll go with this answer. Very, very true, no matter what these are:

length of time in the breed?

amount of litters produced?

show titles produced?

working titles produced?

proximity to yourself?

I would have to say I am with them..ditto..

e
 

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Lisa said:
One of my biggest mentors has had 1 litter in 10 years in the breed. A couple other people I respect immensely and have been taught a great deal from have had no litters. These people all have great knowledge of the AB breed and working dogs in general.

I would not consider them to be breeders then, do you? I thought you were asking what people look for when looking for breeders to mentor them? These people, I would consider to be hardcore enthusiasts who do private breedings based on what they consider to be adequate to them for the intentions of their breeding(s).

I personally think, when it comes to breeding, that you shouldn't look to any one person specifically for knowledge or 'mentoring'. Knowledge is better gained by looking at many, many people's mistakes and progress, and yes I would also include people who don't breed as 'mentor' material if I were to breed. The more people you look to for knowledge, the more views, opinions, input, help, etc you will receive. It could be crap opinions, but the more you hear the more you can compare and sort out for one's self.

Back to the question though on if I were to breed, it will be for myself and other breeders with similar interests. Private breedings. Unlike a lot of people on this forum though, I have nothing against people who breed publicaly as long as they are ethical and compassionate at the same time. If I do a breeding it will be to help further a program of likeminded enthusiasts. People with the same goal and vision, but I would not really publically do the breedings unless I am completely happy with what I would be producing. And no, Franklin definately would not be a mentor of mine lol.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Lisa wrote:
One of my biggest mentors has had 1 litter in 10 years in the breed. A couple other people I respect immensely and have been taught a great deal from have had no litters. These people all have great knowledge of the AB breed and working dogs in general.



Redbull wrote:
I would not consider them to be breeders then, do you?
See, that's my point. People don't have to be "breeders" and have a ton of experience throwing dogs together to be a mentor for someone who may some day want to do a breeding(s) themselves. Even in my intial post, I never said that the mentor had to be an actual breeder who sells dogs to ghe general public.

I look to some of my mentors (I agree there should be more than one!) because of the fact they have owned and worked many dogs, yet bred only a time or 2. When someone can own many dogs, from many different ,great bloodlines but rarely ever choses to breed, thats usually someone with standards. Someone who considers very few dogs to be breed worthy are the type of people I want to learn from. I like to set my bar high.

With the people in my life whom I would consider "mentors" there are some who I look for mentoring on different things...I may look to one person more for a particular issue and someone else I would look to for something else pertaining to the breed. I find that alot of people involved in dogs tend to have their own little "speciality"..something that really interests them and that they find important. People who are passionate about certain issues can be of great help to someone else whose passion may lie in a different aspect of the breed. I think its important that all the people who have good ethics overall pool their knowledge in order to help eachother produce better dogs.

I feel that often times its the people who are breeding the LEAST are the ones with the most to contribute.
 

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Lisa said:
I find that alot of people involved in dogs tend to have their own little "speciality"..something that really interests them and that they find important. People who are passionate about certain issues can be of great help to someone else whose passion may lie in a different aspect of the breed. I think its important that all the people who have good ethics overall pool their knowledge in order to help eachother produce better dogs.

This is the part that I hope anyone looking to breed really understands too, because there is a lot more to breeding than most people think. The more people, experienced breeders or breed specialists you can talk to, the better understanding you will have and the easier it is to make a well educated decision in order to better a breed.
 

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oops, just read through and most people already agree or said what I just posted. :oops:

But for the comment:

Lisa said:
With all the breeders and wannabe breeders on this board you would think there would be many more replies than this.
I thought that this specific forum strongly dislikes breeders in general? I didn't think there were many breeders here at all, or people who aim to breed (there's a few aspiring byb's that I've seen post and frequent but not that many), mainly pet owners and people who only support shelters and rescues? There's a few breeders who come here on occassion but not that many I don't think? This topic would likely do better cross-posted on some other boards that I can think of besides this one.
 

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Wow. Good thread, Lisa.

Hmmm....what do I look for in a mentor?

First is the length of time spent with the breed. Someone who's only been around the breed for 2 years isn't going to truly know enough especailly to teach someone else about it.

Second would be the knowledge, historical & present, they carry with them. They MUST be someone who is well known within the breed & whose dogs are prime examples of what the breed was, is, & should be. They must work there dogs not only to prove the dogs worth in accordance to the breed standard but to also prove himself/herself as a dogman/dogwoman.

Showing is nice, but I don't place much, if any, precedence on them. All shows are is one person's particular preference that day. At a UKC show for APBTs, I saw a judge put up an enourmous 90+lb hippo over a nicely muscled, lean, well put together APBT in the 50lb range. That "win" meant nothing more than the judge was ignorant & stupid. IMO, a great working dog within the breed should show well as form follows function.

Working titles are great as they are proof that the mentor is letting his dogs do the talking. Someone can run their mouth all day long, but if their own dogs can't perform, how do you take them seriously?

IF the person has breed 1 or more litters, I would look at the quality of the pups produced. I would ask his reasonings behind the pairing of the stud & dam & if the pups were old enough to be worked, I would inquire about their achievements. As a good quality breeder with quality dogs will produce a higher percentage of quality pups. Also, this kind of person is usually very strict about breeding guidelines & are open to all kinds of questions & is highgly against/outpoken against bybs.

As for location, I was lucky to meet my mentor at a dog show in LA 10 years ago. I was lucky that he lived only an hour from my hometown, but regardless, I would've met him anywhere. Location shouldn't be a deterrent for learning all you can & getting hands-on experience....especially if you are serious in becoming a QUALITY OWNER with the breed's interest put before your own.

And to me, ALL the requirements must be present in order for me to have this person as a mentor as just having 1 of the mentioned "qualifications" can be misleading (i.e. someone could have 15 years in the breed, yet they are someone who never works his dogs, never shows his dog, & peddles non-standard/poor quality pups out the wazoo. Just b/c they've had the dogs for that length of time, doesn't make them qualified)
 
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