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Old 10-14-2009, 04:38 PM
NajaNivea NajaNivea is offline
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: state of confusion
Posts: 3,652
Originally Posted by rhubarbarin View Post
All I am saying is that dog breeds that have trouble mating and birthing naturally (those with wide heads) have always had these problems.
Yes. And the ones that had these problems were either previously unable to reproduce, or died in labor, thereby being unable to pass along this trait to subsequent offspring. There was a self-limiting endpoint to the relative size of skull-to-pelvis. Selecting for exaggeration of this trait would result in dead bitches and no puppies.

I don't assume that because surgical interventions have become normal for both, the majority are life-saving. And unlike the majority of women who get a trial of labor (which is carefully monitored and cut short on any suspicion of fetal distress), breeds with a high c-section rate are having elective c-sections performed.

See this.

Because nearly 100% of French Bulldog bitches are sectioned, we now have no idea which ones would be capable of natural birth, and no evidence that those which would be if they were allowed are decreasing in number.
Again... I'm having a difficult time understanding.
Prior to elective c-section: balanced skull-to-pelvis size ratio = surviving bitch, many generations of offspring. Exaggerated trait = dead bitch, no puppies.
Now: exaggerated trait = no problem reproducing, many generations of offspring.
What selective pressure stops this trait from continuing to increase with every generation of surviving pups, seeing as how at least some number of Frenchie breeders are actively selecting for these traits, or at the very least, nothing is preventing these dogs from being born and continuing on to breed?

Also, from your link:
As you may already know, the vast majority of French Bulldogs -- and most other Bully breeds -- deliver their puppies by C Section.
(bolding mine)
That's nonsense. The only "bully breeds" that deliver by C-section are the ones that have been bred with physical traits that prevent natural labor and delivery... the varieties we're discussing now. Pit type and working bulldogs do not need to deliver by C-section because their puppies' skulls do not have problems fitting through their pelvises.

I am not saying all Frenchies fit this profile, but most certainly a significantly larger percentage do today than did 150 years ago. That the top-shelf breeders are not necessarily selecting for extreme typiness doesn't mean it's not happening. It is true in every breed that some select for balanced, physically capable dogs, while others only breed for type. It is impossible for the increased reproducibility and survivability of offspring carrying a previously fatal trait to not affect subsequent generations.