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So You Think You have a Stud dog...

Should I breed my male?   Welllllllllllll  breeding, unless you want to take the trouble to enter (possibly hundreds) of AKC shows in the hopes of a title, and ESPECIALLY do the health checks (OFA, CERF, CHD - a necessity) you shouldn't breed him - NOT what you wanted to hear, was it? 

Do you have a pedigree on this guy?  I bet he looks very nice.  But, unless you've done all that, the most you could probably get for a stud fee would be a $100 or so which is really not worth your time when you figure you may have to board the bitch for 2 weeks (picking her up at airports if necessary - the bitch customarily goes to the dog), oversee a several breedings (and a new stud dog will take several tries before he gets it "right" and it will take at least 2 people - one to hold each dog so the male doesn't get hurt - he has a tiny bone that can get broken and ruin him forever if you don't) and THEN hope for puppies so you'll get paid. 

No puppies, no fee -- or only 1/2 fee (with the guarantee you'll do this all over again for free or the other $50 if there is less than say 2 or 3 puppies). (oh yes, forgot about the fact you have to get a brucelloisis test on your male, sperm mobility tests, and health check before anyone would consider using him and even before you get any money ...bye bye $100) 

Then, say the bitch owner sells the puppies and the people she sells them to can't keep them (at any age - even old), and she won't take them back, YOU will have to.  Is that worth $100?  Not really. Some of the top studs in the country only get $400 and they only do it because they love the breed and want to see it continue. There are only 1 or 2 that get more money than that - I know of one that got $1000 but he was #1 AKC champion dog in the country for several years and his owner probably spent $100,000 campaigning him at dog shows to get that occasional $1,000 stud fee.  And no one wants to breed to an unproven, non-champion male when they can get a top dog for a little more (and brag about it and sell the puppies for MUCH more). 

It is a serious problem in this breed as everyone is using the same studs and spreading the same genetic problems around so if he IS nice, and clears all the health checks and has a good pedigree, it would be good to breed him to a nice bitch...but you really have to be commited (or maybe commited to an institution !) to want to do this! 

Unless you have someone in mind that is a friend and you want a puppy out of her bitch, and they compliment each other well (she offsets his faults and visa versa), and you know the pedigrees on both and the genetic problems they are likely to throw together (like coat funk, cataracts, epilepsy, polyneuropathy, thyroid, heart problems, liver problems, etc.), and you've shown the dog and gotten some positive feedback (in other words you've won a lot), and most importantly, the bitch owner has deposits for puppies all lined up ahead of time -- don't bother.  It's just not worth it. 

That's why we've never used our dogs at stud to anyone but our own girls.  It's just not worth the aggravation!  If you have a good dog you think has potential, you need to contact an experienced breeder and have him evaluated - his structure, his pedigree and his movement (very important in a stud dog)!  A seasoned breeder will tell you when you're wasting your time - perhaps he doesn't have much "bone" - and is a sort of "old style" Malamute (which I like, but nobody wants these days - they want legs like pillars ;-) - it's good to know before you blow a lot of money on dog shows and advertising.  Then you start showing him - and if everyone encourages you to continue - stop.  Yes, stop.  You are just fodder for the big winners so they can get points. 

On the other hand....if everyone tells you the dog is junk, makes disparaging remarks outside the ring, and tries to trip you IN the ring...maybe you have something there!  They don't want the competition so maybe you SHOULD show and breed him! 

Anyway, probably more info than you wanted ;-p....but I know nobody ever explained all of this when we got started and you need to know how in debt you'll be, showing and breeding dogs.  You certainly don't MAKE any money at it, actually you tend to go to the poorhouse.  (BTW, the lady with the $1,000 stud fee lives in a little bitty house in the inner city - maybe 650 sq. ft house on a city lot ...so you know she is just raking in the cash to put toward her mansion).