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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I had enough. I just couldn't take it any longer. I'm a patient guy. I was polite. I tried to explain. But the condescending tones were taking a toll on me. The answer came to me. I just blurted it out. The reaction blew me away.

Did I find the answer?

As a disclaimer: I have nothing against dog shows, show dog breeders, tuxedos, signs on cars that say "Caution: Show Dogs" (when there are people in every other car on the highway), or the elimination of working ability that comes as the result of breeding to a physical standard beyond everything else. Some of my best friends breed show dogs. :rolleyes: As long as we still have freedoms, breeders are free to make their choices. It is a good thing.

But it was really getting old. Sassy, DNDs Sassy Marie Little White Foot (per my daughter's wishes) is a field dog. At almost 5 months of age, she doesn't look like what I'm told are "normal" Goldens. She's lighter. She's redder. She doesn't have buckets of fur flowing around her. Yes dammit, she has a white foot. There. I said it! ;-)

Sassy is very well travelled. We've traversed the state of Pennsylvania several times. She's been to shooting preserves, skeet ranges, lacrosse games, little league games, parks, rivers, lakes, the bank lobby, Home Depot and even Goodwill to make a donation. In every single one of those places, she makes friends. She's met many people that are into dogs and hunting. She loves people. But those people (even the hunting types) have been saying things that have caused my daughter to offer an explanation.

What things?

Is your dog part Golden?
She can't be pure Golden, she has a white foot!
Is that an Irish Setter?
What? Did someone mix and Irish Setter with a Golden?
Have you given her a haircut? She doesn't have the same coat as my Golden!
She is soo much smaller than my Golden. He weighs 110lbs. They can't be the same breed.
She looks NOTHING like my Golden. My Golden comes from championship lines. Are you sure she has papers?

But, there have been nice things too.

Your dog sits calmly to be petted? Ah, I wish my golden did that.
Look at how expressive she is! She make eye contact and asks to be petted!
Your dog is really well behaved. She's smart. My Golden isn't like that at all.

But, this morning. It came to me. The answer just came to me. I blurted it out without thinking.

You see, Sassy's micro chip stopped working. She needed to be re-chipped. I was surprised how busy the vet was for a early Saturday morning. There were lots of people who asked lots of questions that have been asked before.

The answer:

Sassy is from field lines. She is a working dog. This is what a working dog is supposed to look like. She's lighter so she can run. She has stamina needed in the field. She has less fur which is more functional. She's reddish Golden because she is a Golden retriever, not a Cream-colored retriever. She has a white foot because it is a vestige of the original Golden Retriever foundation stock. Goldens were hunting dogs at one time and had white feet. She has bred for functionality, intelligence and hunting/retieving ability instead of size, furriness and the ability to catch a show judge's eye. This is what a true Golden retriever is supposed to be.

The response:

I love this dog. Where can I get one? I'd much rather have a dog that looks and acts like this than MY Golden.


Ah, I feel better now. Thanks for listening.
 

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<sigh>
As my disclaimer, I have nothing against field goldens. I have one, who just turned 15. She's a good dog. A lot of my friends have field goldens.

Not all show dogs lack working ability. The fact that their conformation is correct, according to the parent club (GRCA, AKC has nothing to do with it) doesn't automatically remove their brain. Just like not all field goldens are hyper or neurotic dogs. A well bred dog is a well bred dog, regardless of which lines it comes from.

My dog is from show lines. He is a working dog. This is what a working golden retriever is supposed to look like. He's only weighs 65 pounds, which is plenty light to run. He has the stamina needed in the field. He has a correct coat with plenty of undercoat, which keeps him warm and dry (those "pants" and the tail are for insulation on cold ground when hunting all day, not for looks). He is a "lusterous shade of gold" because he is a golden retriever. He has a strong, thick, well muscled neck so he can retrieve large birds. He has a broad skull and well defined stop so that he can see around the birds when they are in his mouth. He has larger, well rounded feet so he doesn't sink into the mud like a deer, and he spreads the toes when swimming for power. He has broad ribs to hold big lungs for swimming and running. He has well laid back shoulders, plenty of forechest and a well angled rear so that he can run for long periods of time without fatigue because his structure allows him to move with minimum effort. He has been bred for functionality, intelligence, temperament and health instead of non-stop energy that can be aimless and out of control. This is what a true golden retriever is supposed to be.


I feel better now, too.
 

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**SIGN**

My dog's better than your dog.
Isn't that a song somewhere.:razz::rolleyes:
Overdone thread Brian.
Everyone has their own opinions.
White vs. nonwhite.
Show vs. Field
To each his/her own.

Sue
 

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BTW Brian, my dog probably looks totally different from yours, and I have had a lot of the same comments that you have! My favorite is when people ask me what he's mixed with, since they have a PAPERED golden retriever that looks nothing like him. I tell them he's a breed champion, they look at me like I'm speaking a foreign language, so I say, "you know, like Westminster Dog Show???".
Field goldens are awesome dogs. Show goldens are awesome dogs. Aw heck, goldens are awesome dogs :)
 

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Whenever I get asked the same questions about my little red dog with a white foot and stripe down his chest; I look down at him (he looks back at me only in the way he can), I then look up at the person asking the questions and say "We both like each other a lot" and leave it there. That's enough for me. That's enough for Major.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
LOL.

This was all in fun guys.

Man!

Understand that my comment was a counter to the looks of disgust and tones of condescension . There we were going weeks and weeks of not trying to offend anyone. I went PC on the whole thing. I wish we had a nickel for every time someone say, "She can't be pure Golden with that white paw!"

Heck, even our vet was questioning Sassy's hertiage.

But, after all the walkin' on egg shells and dancing around as not to offend the breeding of someone's dog (which I know is a MAJOR thing to avoid), my guard was down and I just let my answer go. But...do you understand the point of my lil' novel?

All that build up for the "punchline"? (Which wasn't really a punch line but a revelation.)

Sometimes text doesn't convey everything that one's voice would. That's a pity.

The point of all that wasn't "my dog is better than your dog" or anything close to that. The point was that after all my internal frustration of having to deal with condescending attitude that their dog was more pure and somehow more "Golden" because of the way it looked, when I finally had the gonads to say something, the person to whom I was speaking wanted a Golden like Sassy.

What? No one gets the humor in that? There we were being offended by the "What is that?" attitude of others followed by the "Your breeder is pull'n one over on you! She's NOT AKC!"

But in reality, it was our our problem in the way we reacted. Those asking just didn't realize that there were different kinds of Goldens! Most people just don't follow dogs that much. They think they are like models of cars.

That's why I feel better.

Sue, I don't feel it is over done. Every time we take the dog somewhere we deal with what I've described. Plus I added a disclaimer that agrees with your post. Your dog can be better than ours. It probably is. It's ok. I don't mind at all.

H4D...you Rock!
 

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Pretty is as Pretty does, and that is what the average pet person is seeing with both CH Tito and very nicely bred field girl Sassy. Just keep educating them in a polite succint way. It is human nature for most people to want status quo as perceived by the masses, they want to feel like they fit in. They are not as comfortable with thinking outside the box.

I am fortunate to know both Sassy and Tito in different ways.

I have trained with, or watched run at hunt tests or trials many of the dogs on both sides of Sassy's pedigree. Sassy has the potential to be one great little golden in field, obedience, agility or whatever she wants to be. As soon as all of the neighbors can really see what she is capable of, you will only have admiration and all of this pettiness will disappear. Now, our whole neighborhood tells us how beautiful our dogs are, the little red hairless comments have disappeared. Anyway, by the time Sassy is 3 or 4 she will have more red coat and probably fit right into the standard for a Golden Retriever female.

I have also had the pleasure of meeting Tito and watching him run a Senior Test. He did an awesome job, loved what he was doing and stepped on both of his marks in the land series. I know that he finished his breed championship very easilly, but Barb is correct he does not look like your typical American pet Golden, or many other breed Champions. He is a dark Golden, not red but very dark. If it was not for all the coat you might think he was field, he moves very well. Once you get up close you see that he does carry more bone, like a breed Golden.

I am sure that there are a lot of very nice pet Goldens, that with a little bit of training would look much prettier too.

Colleen
 

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<blushing> thanks!
 

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Ah the age old argument over breed vs field. Back in the early '60s we had a golden about which everyone asked "Is that an Irish Setter?" Mind you, we lived in WI at the time where goldens were fairly well known, but he was a gorgeous dark red. He actually ended up being shown in the breed ring by our friend Del Glodowski (only old folks will remember him as a handler/judge) and we field trained with the folks at Random Lake. He made the Derby List, won the Peter of Woodend Trophy, and was QAA in 3 trials. He also had 4 or so Reserve Winners from the puppy class in shows. Unfortunately we were stupid and retired him at age 3 when we returned to California--we didn't really have the monies to run him in anything, but people still asked us what he was and if he was "papered"...sigh. He ended up as our hunting dog and he thought that was okay, too.
Time has moved on, but there's still that argument or whatever you want to call it about the show vs field golden--don't think it will ever end, so let's just be happy with the kind we have and let the other folk do the same. I'm trying really hard to do that this week because when I had one of my goldens in the vet's office the other day, a lady walked in just in front of me with a breed type boy. When her dog lunged for mine she said, "Oh my dog doesn't want to hurt him, he just wants his retrieve thingy". Ah, my golden was a female and that retrieve thingy is called a bumper.
Way it goes.
Suzanne B
Suzanne
 

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If you folks think you got it rough I've had two different people ask me if my Little Red Dog is a Chesapeake. I'm currently in therapy.
 

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Yeah well, I once had someone ask me if FC/AFC Molly was 'pure bred."

I thought it was funny because I was thinking the same thing about her Lab.. Short, stubby little legs, no neck or back, chubby...
And where the heck was that nice, long nose...:p
 

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Ive had people question my BLF's pedigree as well, she's long and lean, not like their neighbours fat short lab, then I bust out into the whole multiple NAFTCH ancestors speel and they give me the vague look and "Oh,.....". Oh well.
 

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Brian you took my post wrong.
I understand you completely.
I've bought,trained,trialed, ran Hunt tests and bred "Field " Goldens for many yrs.
I attended every Golden Specialty Field event up until 2000 when kids activities became more important.
Am tired of the constant reminder how wonderful some Goldens are.
Was this a thread of brags?
Thus my comment.
"My dog is better than your dog".
YAWN
 

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If you folks think you got it rough I've had two different people ask me if my Little Red Dog is a Chesapeake. I'm currently in therapy.
I can do you one better, Becky, my little female is often mistaken for a Toller.....and she had no white on her. But....if she could perform like Annie, I would not mind a bit :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
Brian After all this, I'd really like to hear what people ask you about your Avatar dog! You must really get questions about him...

Jen
Yes. You are correct. I get lots of questions.

Indy is a handsome fellow. His parents were both born in Germany. He is registered with the VDD, not the AKC.

When someone asks about Indy and I am not rushed, I explain that Indy is a Drahthaar which is a dog from Germany similar to the AKC German Wirehaired Pointer.

If they ask a follow-up, I explain the differences between the VDD and the AKC.

* Within the VDD, dogs must meet certain qualifications, physical and working, to be certified for breeding.

* Everything is controlled within the VDD. Every kennel must be registered. There are rules about the age and number of litters dam can produce.

* Breed wardens visit kennels to tattoo the pups' ears and to stamp the pups' pedigrees with the same mark. This is used for verification/identification later during Hunt Tests.

* The dog's name tells you the kennel and the litter number. Indy vom Wiredhaus is from the I-litter (the 8th litter) from the VDD kennel named Wiredhaus. All his littermates names begin with "I". Easy!

* The VDD wants hunting dogs and does not want someone to develop a line to do nothing more than pass hunt tests. This being the case, each test can be taken a maximum of twice. There is a spring puppy (natural ability) and a fall breed test (very similar to a NAVHDA test). Dogs are scored against a breed standard. The scores are recorded and can be referenced forever. There is a extremely tough utility test too. It involves brood tracking and extreme levels of training.

* For those wishing to have their dogs certified for breeding, there is a process to evaluate coat and confirmation. Think dog show minus the tuxedos. The rating is recored on the dog's pedigree and sent to Germany to be part of the dog's permanent record.

* It is cool knowing the pointing, tracking, cooperation, nose, duck search and retrieving scores of all litter-mates tested from generation to generation. Yes, dogs are evaluated on cooperation. It is great thing. Breed books are available from the VDD which lists in detail, the test scores by kennel by litter. Incredible.

* This whole process elevates the whole breed. Breeders can make sound decisions based on analyzing all the data and by watching the dogs in person.
* The AKC is a breed registry.

* There are good breeders and not-so-good-breeders. Both can register puppies. Kennels don't have to be registered unless they produce a certain number of liters.

* People assume AKC registration means quality and value.

* There is no structure to identify kennels or litters. Everyone names their own dogs and frequently asks total strangers for their help on the internet. You can't track physical rating or test scores by kennel or litter. Most of the time you don't have a clue if pups are from the same litter because the names are so different.

* Often hunting lines and show lines within the same breed are so different that the dogs look like different breeds.

* No one has a clue what "pet quality" means.

* For a novice, navigating through this and finding a quality dog can be a challenge.


If I am rushed or the person doesn't really seem to care, I just say that Indy is a German Wiredhaired Pointer and nod knowingly when they tell me they know someone with a German Shorthaired Pointer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Brian you took my post wrong.
I understand you completely.
I've bought,trained,trialed, ran Hunt tests and bred "Field " Goldens for many yrs.
I attended every Golden Specialty Field event up until 2000 when kids activities became more important.
Am tired of the constant reminder how wonderful some Goldens are.
Was this a thread of brags?
Thus my comment.
"My dog is better than your dog".
YAWN
Ah, now I understand. I'll check with you first next time. Sorry for boring you.
 
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