Genetics have been on my mind quite a bit lately. Breeding beautiful, healthy, "poodley" poodles is a daunting task. Every purebred is not without its own set of heritable diseases. Almost everyone knows some dog with allergies, chronic ear infections, bite problems, etc. Particularly, standard poodles have to fight something called "the bottleneck." During the mid-century bottleneck (MCB) there was a good bit of inbreeding. Many successful breeders maintain that line-breeding gives you the best of the best in type and even health in some cases, but, in more recent times, we have been starting to see the ill-effects caused by overuse. You may have heard of "Popular Sire Syndrome." The good doctors at UC Davis are working hard - and now with more breeders than ever before thanks to the backing of the Poodle Club of America funding received this year!- to find the answers to some of the ugly autoimmune disease that we as breeders can neither test for nor predict. I have been asked several times this month what my goals are for my breeding program. My mission has always been to breed for beauty, health, temperament, and intelligence (read trainability). To me, they are equally important to preserve the breed that I love. Currently, there is a new test for poodle breeders. It is complex and a tad bit confusing, but the potential is enormous. It has been included in the 2015 Standard Poodle Database disc. This "Genetic Diversity Test" is not a crystal ball, but the more breeders who get on board and add their dogs to the database, the more we will know. To learn more about the Genetic Diversity Test, please follow this link to Natalie Tessier's website. She has done a fine job of putting this info into layman's terms. Lastly, if you are a breeder, please, please, ORDER the test & test your dogs! If you have intact poodles, ORDER the test! You never know how valuable they might be to the breed.
WHEN we get this worked out, thank the brilliant Dr. Neils Pedersen and pat yourselves on the back for being part of the solution. All intact poodles at Cadeau have had this test done, and we will utilize every available test for improved health and longevity of the Standard Poodle.