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Old July 8, 2012, 03:27 PM   #10
Senior Member
Join Date: February 21, 2012
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 763
A rose by any other name would smell just as sweet...
This is quite true of dogs too. What matters is bloodlines, pedigree and breeding practices. The German Wirehair here in America and the Duetch Draathaar (spelling?) in Germany are the same breed and the same dog. If you compare DNA of the two it will be confirmed. The difference, as has been stated, is simply the breeding and the goals of the breeding. Here in America (and in some other countries) sporting dogs, herding dogs and working dogs have developed into two separate lines: the field line and the bench line.

The field lines are bred in an effort to maintain hunting, tracking and working instincts (ie. the reason why the breed was created in the first place). In these lines working dogs tend to be more oriented toward what work they were trained for. They may not be so friendly toward strangers, may even be generally distrusting of strangers and may not be very good with other dogs that they don't recognize as belonging to their group/territory. Sporting dogs are more keyed to the retrieving, tracking and hunting aspect and again may not be so oriented toward other things that the bench crowd wants. Typically these dogs' appearances are exactly the same as the bench line dogs nor are their temperaments and physical capabilities and instinctive abilities the same.

Bench lines are bred to conform to someone's ideals of what the breed should look like (which more often than not has diverged from what the breed originally looked like). In fact many breeds of dogs that have been bred primarily for conformity shows have diverged greatly from their original looks... because their breeding criteria had changed. Mastiffs in Roman times didn't have a ton of excess hair and were not such lean dogs - being more muscular and massive with tighter coats and possessing more stamina than the current incarnation of the mastiff. However someone decided they wanted a more docile and less active big dog and that's what they did through selective breeding. Voila the modern mastiff is born. One mastiff that hasn't undergone that transformation yet is the Tibetan Mastiff but then they're not very popular in modern dog owner circles because they're not "gentle giants" like everyone wants a mastiff to be. Remember though that at one time a mastiff was a big, muscular, drooling and vicious dog that was to its masters and people but wouldn't think twice about laying into a stranger unless their master called them off. Now most mastiffs would suffocate you to death with their drooling licks than bite if you were to walk onto their territory. Talk about a 180 degree turn!

Of course I could talk on and on about differences between bench line and field line sporting dogs but I won't. What I will say is that if your dog is truly bred for what you say its bred for then you've invested in good stock but if memory serves me right the AKC won't allow full registration of your dog anyway because it was from Germany. Maybe the rules have changed but the best you could get is ILP registration which only allows it to participate in competitions etc. but does not grant you registration rights to any of its progeny.

Anyway have fun with your puppy and good luck with your breeding. If your puppy is as good as you say he is you'll need to be very selective about which dog you decide to have him mate with for puppies... you don't want to water down such a great bloodline with bench bred blood. That's the dilemma I'm going to be dealing with eventually too.
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