Our primary goal is to allways breed with healthy dogs with high qualities. We want our dogs to be sound, both mentally and physically. Our dogs have of course excellent hip-scores. We think that a weimaraner is a nice companion and a good family-dog with a very good general appearence, steady dogs with character and outstanding quality, good-tempered dogs with hunting abilities. That´s why we breed ”high-class” in thought of good exteriour and high prizes on fieldtrial.
”The only thing you can´t do with a weimaraner is nothing…”
”What we do in life, echoes in eternity.”
Our thoughts about breeding
Weimaraner breeding stock is numerous small in Sweden. Nowadays, there are possibilities: borders are practically open, if your dogs has vaccinations agains rabies etc, or, if you like, you can import semen. We are in big need of genetic variation, so all our dogs won´t become too closely related to eachother. That doesn´t mean that all dogs are capable of producing stock! Not all dogs are suitable for breeding because of lack of necessary qualifications.
We think that there are some necessary qualifications for a dog, considering it as capable of producing stock:
Soundness: Hip-X-rayed, of course, and if possibly also an X-ray of the elbows. Of course free from epilepsy, entropion, skin- or stomachediseases/problems and other diseases/malformations.
Temper: A happy and open individual.
Exteriour: The dog must fulfill the qualifications for the breed standard; it´s supposed to look like a weimaraner!
Workingabilities: The dog must have proven it´s abilities in hunting, in a typical weimaraner way.
A bitch/male is not supposed to put at service until it has proven healthy, both in body and mind, with a lot of high prizes both in huntingtests and from shows. The temper is ,of course, a main factor with the thought of how the bitch will nurse her offspring. The litterbrothers and -sisters and the parents are important too. They must also be healthy and not have major faults considering the breed standard. A studdog or broodbitch must very well fit in the breed standard both exteriour and the way they hunt.
That´s why we breed ”high-class” in thought of good exteriour and high prizes on fieldtrial.! To have a written objective and impartial proof that the dogs are the way they are supposed to! You can brag about your dogs, talk about how incredibly capable, beautiful and nice companions they are, but we mean that if you don´t have any paper at all about all these things, all your words are meaningless. Why not proove all these things? As a puppybuyer, this might be your only guarantee that your puppy fulfills the demands of how a weimaraner´s supposed to be. That´s the very least thing you can ask for.
It´s very easy to go ”kennelblind”, meaning you can´t find any faults at all on your own dogs and offspring. You think everythin is great! However, all other breeders dogs have serious faults…
It´s dangerous to go kennelblind. You have to see faults on your own dogs. Why? One really good reason is to find the faults to prevent and avoid them in the future, other planned litters. Otherwise, you can´t succeed. You can´t afford having mediocre stock, your sins will find you out! You can´t blame everything on bad luck, accidents and strange coincidences, for example ”The dog had a minor accident when it was tiny and these things seems to still bother it…”
Age is a factor we value a lot. By here, we mean the parents of the stock, their litterbrothers and -sisters and further back in the pedigree. Are they still alive, or, how old were they? Did they die of natural causes or did they have to put them to sleep? Why? A dog is not supposed to be too old, but everybody hopes a dog can live a sound and healthy life, reaching several years of age with no bigger trouble than normal. This is, however, something that puppybuyers appreciate! They wouldn´t like to buy a dog they only can have for 3-5 years, and then have to put it to sleep for some strange reason or disease, when they buy a puppy, they buy it for a lifetime!
Honesty is important! Both to yourself and to your puppybuyers. You have to be honest to yourself asking for instance: Is this dog really good? Will these puppies be able to fulfill my qualifications to my breedinggoals? We would really like to see what our new ”stars” can perform, an offspring-evaluation. Was this really good? What went wrong, and what do I have to do better next time?
Even if our dogs first of all are familymembers, hunting means a lot. We use our dogs hunting: pheasants, ducks, grouse, tracking roe deer… AND lots of other things: show, obedience, sleighracing… This is somethings we´re not ashamed of, on the contrary, we are happy that our dogs are versatile!
Dual purpose – a phrase very common among dogpeople. Beauty and huntingabilities match each other. These words are combined. Why not? Just the fact that a dog is beautiful, doesn´t mean that it´s stupid or a non-hunting dog and vice verse. A dog that has unquestionably many prizes from huntingtests can´t be unmanageable, it has to be obedient, responsive and trainable. Why lower one´s standards of quality?
Our breedinggoal is NOT to breed just to sell puppies, we think that´s really unserious. We try to keep our broodbitches fresh and not let them have too many litters. If they are supposed to have any litters at all… First of all, our dogs are lovely companions and huntingdogs.
A bitch/male shold not be put in use too early. Let the dog be at least three years old, then you´ll know if it´s a healthy and sound one, as well as its littermates. The bitch also has to be mature enough to take care of her puppies in a proper way. Don´t overuse the bitch with too many litters, you´ll have to have a lot of time to find out how the progeny are and the bitch has to have a lot of time to rest between the litters. This goes for the studs as well: evaluating the progeny! But, this means also that a broodbitch isn´t able to have so many litters in her life. On the other hand, the dogs will not be overused:
A studdog (or a broodbitch) should not produce more than 5% of the puppies in its generation. This means 25% of the number of puppies registrated during a year. That would mean for us weimaranerbreeders in Sweden (2004 registrationnumbers) a total of 24 puppies!
Our opinion of line-breeding or out-crossing, the one does not exclude the other, and no-one of these two breedingtypes are more right than the other.
Line-breeding is a way to protect and take care of good hereditary characteristics, but there are some things you´ll have to be aware of: the stock must be absolutely impeccable, as well as their parents and littermates. It can take you a lot of years to collect all the necessary information about all these dogs and then to do a line-breeding. But, when you have all the facts, you are certain of your plan of action. Shortly, you can say that both good and bad qualities are doubled, a risk you´ll have to take.
Out-crossing is risky business, too. Some times with diffuse pedigrees, unknown dogs, a lot of detectivework until you are satisfied. Out-crossing is necessary when stock is too ”close”, then you have no other alternative. It allways brings you new strains, but you´ll have to be aware that these two connected strains not allways fit together.
We are trying very hard to do as interesting combinations as possible, with the thought of both the male and female. Will this offspring bring something new to the weimaraners of today? Is it good enough, mentally, exteriour and huntingabilities? Is this an individ that I want to bring with me for the next generations in my breedingprogram? Etc… The stock must suit eachother, make a complete picture. All dogs has minor faults. The perfect dog does not excist!!! Our fundamental idea:THE OFFSPRING HAS TO BECOME BETTER THAN THEIR PARENTS. This idea has to be the goal.
Breeding is complicated. It´s about live individuals, all very unique. Many things can go wrong, sometimes you can blame it on ”accident at work”. But, if you are able to really see your dogs with critical and selective eyes, you might be on the right track…