Ross Bash Posted January 21, 2012 Report Share Posted January 21, 2012 Hello to all -- First, let me say how much I enjoy and benefit from all I've learned reading posts on BC Boards since I became a member a few months ago ("newbie" is a bit of an understatement in my case). I think the context of my question is important, so I hope you'll take the time to read and consider this (long) summary: We (my wife and I) have two young Border Collies. The older one (named Uri, a male, 17 months old) is ABCA -- which we did purposefully as I recall the breeder giving us the choice of having his papers sent into either ABCA or AKC. We chose ABCA because we support the ABCA's efforts to maintain and preserve the working ability of Border Collies (Donald McCaig's "Dog Wars" was very influential in our thinking). His training to date has been more limited than I'd like by reason of lack of ready access both to sheep and to an instructor (instruction as much if not more for me than for him). The closest trainers I've found are 100 and 150 miles away and both are with the AHBA; that said, I've been pretty happy with the instruction we've gotten (Uri has shown good ability; I'm lower and slower on the learning curve compared to him) and we're close to solving the lack of ready access to sheep provided time and weather cooperate for me to get all the fence in and a shelter of sorts up. My interest is grounded both in love of the breed and an enjoyment and appreciation of working with livestock; trialing, even as a potential, is way down my priorities list, except as an adjunct to developing and having a good working dog and ready opportunities for him to do the kind of work for which he's bred. Shortly after we got Uri, we "inherited" a female Border Collie pup (named Maya, now 11 months) after our daughter's in-laws who had bought her found they couldn't care for her adequately and were simply going to take her to the pound. We've adopted a lot of dogs over the years (rescued dogs, shelter dogs, abandoned dogs, etc.), so (naturally) Maya came to live with us and fits right in (notwithstanding her toothing stage that cost me only half a pair of shoes, several socks, one wallet -- still useable though -- and a few "love marks" on some furniture; she learns readily though and really wants to please, and we've always treated this kind of thing as teachable moments with pups). Maya's papers from the breeder (never sent in) are with AKC and it's some sort of special AKC registration that requires her to be neutered before being registered. I'm assuming (not being familiar with AKC rules) that this is a "price" thing; that is, the in-laws who bought her from the breeder paid a lower price for her because of the restriction and would have had to pay more to the breeder without the restriction. I gather from the breeder's website that she is exclusively AKC and breeds for shows (i.e., appearance and conformation). Given that I did not deal with the breeder or make any agreement about neutering the pup, I've not had her neutered (yet) nor have I sent in her papers to AKC with the special registration (so I guess she's in a form of AKC dog "limbo"). Given that ABCA's rules for qualifying a dog not out of ABCA parents for registration are stringent, I recognize that the odds of qualifying Maya are slim, but I wanted to see what kind of interest in sheep and herding potential she had before neutering her (given its finality as much for dogs as for people!). She's now been exposed twice to sheep and had opportunity to work in a very controlled way, and she shows potential and a lot of interest (watching other dogs actually working before her probably helped). Another trainer there at the time also told me that AKC has an open registration policy so I could also register Uri (the older male) with AKC, so both pups could be AKC registered if I can persuade Maya's breeder to lift the restriction about neutering (which, again, I suspect is just a matter of price; if not, then the question is pretty much moot). You may have gathered by now that we have an interest in possibly breeding Uri and Maya at some point (we successfully got through Maya's first heat without any "domestic blessing!"), but we're not set on it by any measure -- we're in a holding pattern -- bottom line is whether their pups would have the potential of being good working dogs and meet the health standards for the breed (eyes, hips, etc.). If it shouldn't or doesn't happen, then so be it -- we just want to make the right decision, at the right time, for the right reasons. So here are my questions for your advice and insight: (1) How realistic is it for a Border Collie to be ABCA registered through ABCA's qualifying process? (2) If it is possible (realistically), what should I do to allow Maya a fair chance at it (e.g., send her to an experienced trainer so she will be prepared to take her best shot at the required trials)? (3) Should I even consider AKC registration for Uri (assuming that Maya can be AKC registered without the restriction; otherwise it becomes a moot question)? Related ??: Does that have any adverse effect on his standing with ABCA? Does it work against (or somehow show disloyalty to) ABCA's efforts to protect the breed (keeping in mind that I've never even been to a dog show; the likelihood of my ever having or using a dog for show purposes is the equivalent of my growing three heads or six thumbs...)? Are AKC registered dogs frowned on or shunned by ABCA folks (or even allowed to compete in ABCA trials should we ever want to give it a try)? (4) More general question: Given that AHBA folks seem to have a stronger connection to AKC, am I doing a disservice to Uri and Maya by taking advantage of the AHBA clinics (and the instructor I've been using) since that seems to be what's available (primarily if not exclusively) within any reasonable distance? If I've missed any question(s) that I should be asking, please don't hesitate to throw it into the mix. Thanks. Ross Bash Why Timid Familes Shouldn\'t Have Border ColliesDoc2.doc Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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