There are many aspects of breeding that breeders have to deal with. One point, which does not concern my own influenceable factors, is to find the "right" stud dog for my bitch, and thus to plan the supposedly ideal mating. It must be said in advance that there is, of course, no such thing as the "right" stud dog. There is only the male or males that represent the ideal degree-measurer for me. For other breeders, other males are more ideal because their priorities are probably partly different from mine. Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)
The first step is to define which points I would like to pay particular attention to in the selection process. There are aspects that go without saying, because they are objectively measurable and irrevocably important health aspects: HD and ED values must be correct as well as inbreeding and ancestry coefficient. These are the values that must definitely match the values of my bitch. But of course that is not everything. So, what else do I look for? Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)
In any case, I look at the pedigrees of the males in question - regardless of the pure numbers or values. Are there lines in there that I find particularly great, or the other way round, are there lines in there that I don't like at all? In this context, I also look to see if there are lines that have already shown conspicuousness in the past, for example, with regard to more or less regularly occurring diseases? Unfortunately, this can only be checked to a limited extent, because not every dog owner reports the death or the cause of death of a dog to the breeding association. However, this also applies to diseases. So there is no reliability in this respect. But as a breeder I can draw conclusions for myself from the available data. Of course, I can also contact the breeding commission responsible for me and ask them to provide me with information - as far as available. I can also ask the Breeding Commission or my breeding officer for advice on my selection. Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)
Of course, the males must also look good to me. In this respect, the male should correspond to my personal ideal image of a male, or he should look like I imagine him to look. He should have as few "faults" as possible, but of course many aspects are subjective. There is no right and no wrong, for example, with the charbonnage. Whether I like it more or less is not an objectively measurable criterion. It is the same with the other factors concerning the breed standard. Small ears or big ears? Would I rather have a male at the upper end of the size scale or a smaller male? Or do I simply move very close to the standard, and so choose the middle? Whatever the case, my personal feeling and my personal taste play a decisive role here. I can see immediately whether I like a male more or less.
Of course, in the whole selection process you also have to deal very strongly and above all with your own bitch. And here one must not only allow one's own subjective view, but must also be prepared to recognise the faults that one's own bitch has - if one can speak of actual faults at all - and to admit them to oneself. Perhaps it is also better to speak in this context not of faults but of weaknesses with regard to the ideal conception of the breed standard. Yes, the term weaknesses is clearly better here. Well, in any case, when choosing a stud dog, I try to balance the possible weaknesses of my bitch with the strengths of the stud dog. For example, if my bitch has a mask that is slightly too open, then I will try to find a male that has a strong mask. The same applies to all other aspects. If the bitch has too little charbonnage, then I will look for a male that possibly has a lot of charbonnage.
Up to this point, however, these have only been aspects that can be compared and combined with each other.
Also important in the decision making process is what kind of line the male dog comes from and what will (or will not) be worked with. For example, am I looking for a male from a sporting or performance breed or do I simply "just" want a male that will be more or less employed as a family dog with a "normal" amount of sport/work.
Unfortunately, the gene pool for our breed or variety is not so huge here in Germany, so it may well be, and the probability is also very high, that I will have to conduct my search beyond the country's borders, and then perhaps find more in other European countries. This in turn possibly ensures that the degree of inbreeding is somewhat reduced. The search abroad is of course much more time-consuming. I have to be prepared to visit exhibitions in France, the Czech Republic or Scandinavia, for example. Somewhat closer for me are the mother country of our breed or the Netherlands.
So - now I have found the male that comes into question for me both from the values and optically. And that's it now? Can I now start planning my litter accordingly? No. Not for a long time yet. But what is still missing?
So, the next step is to contact the stud dog owner. The stud dog owner must also be able to imagine mating his male with my bitch. If he does not like my bitch, or if he pursues completely different goals, then I as a breeder can plan as much as I want, the litter will still not come about. But now the stud dog owner can imagine the litter. Is that it then? No, still not.
If I do not yet know the male personally, I would like to get to know him, of course, because the male must also have a good character. This means that if the male has a character that I can well imagine for the puppies I am breeding, and which also fits well with the character of my bitch, then there is not much standing in the way of this mating. In fact, I am personally a big fan of letting the two dogs get to know each other in advance of the mating to see if male and female like each other and get along. After all, we are still dealing with nature, and there is also sympathy and antipathy among dogs. So this hurdle must also be overcome.
If everything fits now, the litter plan can be submitted to the Breeding Commission for approval. And last but not least, of course, there can be a veto here - for whatever reason. So, that must also fit.
If I now draw a line under the calculation, I have to conclude that it is very time-consuming and not at all easy to find the ideal stud dog for my bitch or mating. In any case, I have to plan a certain amount of time for this process. And even though our first litter is still some time away, to conduct this selection process quite early in the run-up now is certainly not premature. In the meantime I have the male in mind for our first litter that I could imagine using. The future will show whether it will be him or perhaps another male. The search and selection is not limited to one male anyway, but to a selection of several males.
After the mating, I will gladly reveal my criteria and my concrete decision-making basis for the selection of the corresponding stud dog. I think this is only fair, also - and above all - to the prospective puppy buyers.