[ SHOWGSD-L ] Re: Response to ignorance

  • From: "Oak&Carrie Smith" <osmith@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <showgsd-l@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 21 Nov 2009 09:49:45 -0700

> We found a dog that had the rear angles and the right shoulder could  work
> longer and do what the breed was bred to do.  > And, yes, they are 
> ignorant. I just tell them to think of a runner at the
> starting gate, and where their legs are just before they take off running.
>
> Evan  Ginsburg
> Asgard German Shepherds

I think this is a very interesting discussion. Ever since we have been in 
the breed this has been the standard answer. And yet when pictures of early 
GSDs ( early 1900's through 1940's) are examined there is less angulation in 
the rear, and the early Shepherds were much closer to working for a living 
herding than our current dogs are. I think Jackie Short made a good point 
when she questioned where this has been tested. In other words how has this 
hypothosis ("We found a dog that had the rear angles and the right shoulder 
could  work  longer and do what the breed was bred to do") been proved?

 I don't have a lot to work with but my own experience has been mixed. My CH 
Oak Ridge Lunar Shadow (Josh) is not heavily angulated in the rear,(though 
more so than earlier GSD's) very good shoulder in the front. He would not 
have finished in the specialty ring. He is the only dog I currently have 
that I have a picture of doing a "flying trot". He does this easily and 
effortlessly. The picture of him doing the "flying trot" was taken at the 
specialties down in southern Arizona several years ago with me on the lead 
trotting next to him, not very fast I might add, all four feet distinctly 
off of the gound at the trot. He can go for miles this way. My other CH 
male, Joelle's Leonardo Windward, (Leo) has greater rear angulation, a 
decent front, won in both specialties and all breeds, is much more eye 
catching when he moves. He can cover amazing amounts of ground in a single 
stride. He also appears effortless when he moves. However Leo cannot cover 
the miles that Josh does. He can go faster for shorter distances, ("I just 
tell them to think of a runner at the starting gate, and where their legs 
are just before they take off running.") is MUCH prettier to watch (hence he 
won in the specialties) but on a road workout will quit long, and I mean 
long, before the first male is even close to quitting. These are both good 
dogs, both deservedly champions, both with strengths and weaknesses.

These are only two dogs, though Josh's sister and his mother both move 
longer and with less effort than my more angulated dogs, so is not a 
conclusive piece of evidence but it does make me question how much 
additional rear angulation is a help and how much is too much and for show?

Carrie & Oak Smith
Oak Ridge German Shepherds
Dedicated to the German Shepherd Dog
Signers: GSDCA Breeder's Code of Ethics
www.oakridgegsd.blogspot.com 

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