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Old 10-12-2009, 02:33 PM
NajaNivea NajaNivea is offline
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: state of confusion
Posts: 3,652
rhubarbarin, I think you've got me wrong. I am not in here arguing about "inbreeding" at all. You have not seen me arguing from that platform because it is not a belief I hold.

Hopefully my response post will clear up my position. I did actually come across that article, poking around for good "downface" photos, and agree with most of it. She's wrong about bull terriers though, or rather the point she makes misses the mark slightly. There are, of course, more moderate BTs being bred today, and the best breeders are breeding more moderate BTs, as I just said. This kind of severely exaggerated downface did not exist in the 1700's, if for no other reason than because James Hinks didn't start breeding them until the 1850s.

Secondly, HR Garner's work on variable number tandem repeats shows a steep change in the genes which direct the "downface" trait over the last half of the last century.

Rapid and sustained evolution of breeds. Purebred bull terrier skulls from 1931 (Top), 1950 (Middle), and 1976 (Bottom). Despite the lack of genetic diversity caused by population structure and history, these breeds are able to continually create new and more extreme morphological variations at a rapid and sustained pace. Analysis of the Runx-2 repeats in the 1931 bull terrier reveals a more intermediate allele (Q19A14) than is present in the modern bull terrier (Q19A13).
Finally, she does prove my point just fine on the "English" type bulldog front. Look at all the depictions of early bulldogs--it's not the snout length I'm "complaining" about, it's the relative size of skull-to-pelvis, the problem that makes modern dogs unable to birth naturally. Her use of a Polish top-winning bulldog to prove her point is a bit disingenuous. European dogs are, in general, far less extreme in type than American-bred dogs, and she surely knows that.

If you'd like to step aside from believing that I'm arguing in favor of the "Pedigree Dogs" special propaganda, maybe you'll take a minute to consider that in the early 1800's, no one was routinely AI/C-sectioning bulldogs of any type. I guarantee you that, because companion animal medicine as a practice, and certainly routine elective surgery, was not something practiced or invested in until the later half of the last century. If you want to try and argue that French bulldogs were routinely delivered by c-section 150 years ago, be my guest.

If you don't think there are recent, widespread morphological changes which necessitate this sort of routine surgical intervention... maybe you think they just do it now for the fun of it?

Last edited by NajaNivea; 10-12-2009 at 02:35 PM.