I have mentioned before I had an English Bulldog named Roscoe. I was obsessed with two ideas, Finding a dog. And finding a dog I could afford. English Bulldogs are not known for their budget-friendly price tag.
In 1986 when I was shopping around for one I could afford, I came across an ad in a newspaper for English Bulldogs half the price of the ones I had been looking at. These dogs were out of state in Mississippi.
My wife, my two-year-old daughter, and I all loaded up one Sunday morning. Our quest for the day was to bring Roscoe home!
Two years later I lost Roscoe. And it was later determined a contributing factor to his death was more than likely the fact he was inbred.
Looking back, I wish I had done my homework. But, it was 1986. No computer. No internet. The only way you could really research a dog back then was to buy a magazine and order catalogs and brochures on your dogs. And you trusted all the information you found.
Today I am going to write from experience. And hopefully, I can give you a heads up on inbred dogs simply because I have been there.
I will offer you both my personal opinions and advice as well as the latest information on the internet. I hope it’s a good read.
My first clue in finding my short and squatty sidekick should have been the price. At the time English Bulldogs were going anywhere from $900 to $1500. A lot back in 1986. Still pricey today. But when I found a breeder within one day drive with $400 dogs, I should have avoided them like the plague.
Buying a dog is like buying anything else. You get exactly what you pay for. And if the price sounds too good to be true, there is usually a reason.
I was young and hadn’t gotten all of the facts before I made my decision. Also, I wasn’t angry about losing the money, and I was angry at the breeder and how he misrepresented his pups. Buyer beware!
Reputable breeder and get references
The breeder I choose seemed to come out of nowhere. And at the time the AKC was the most widely recognized dog breed association.
My guy lived in a two-bit shack out in the Mississippi woods and I can’t even remember the registration association the dogs were registered under. Needless to say, it was not the AKC!
I should have gotten more information on the breeder and the association. And I also should have demanded references! It’s just good business to ask somebody to back up what they claim.
I’m not blaming the whole issue on the lack of any internet, but it sure would have helped!
Most at risk
Inbred dogs are far more likely to develop health problems. As was my dog. The health problems they can have are nothing easy to correct.
Inbred dogs are at risk of developing:
- Heart Disease
- Liver Disease
- Kidney Diseased
- Diminished Lung Capacity
None of these are easy on you or the dog. People spend these absurd amounts of money for a ‘purebred’ dog and when they are just puppies, they seem just fine. Puppies will be puppies, and all are extremely cute.
These medical issues usually don’t begin to reveal themselves until the pup reaches adulthood. Just enough time for an enormous bond to be made.
Sometimes inbred dogs will try to be passed off as simply the ‘runt’ of the litter and therefore they are cheaper. Be very aware of any outward appearing abnormalities. They may have one eye which seems to droop lower than the other, or two different ears.
Some inbred pups are born with dysplasia. A disorder involving them having ‘bad’ hips. These dogs will seem as if their front and back legs have been switched around. The wider, stockier hips and legs will be on the rear of the animal causing him to walk awkwardly.
Inbred dogs often have an odd-shaped head or tail. Some are even born without tails. These are two good indicators of an inbred animal.
An inbred female will have a smaller litter. She will also have a higher puppy mortality rate. Inbred pups have the deck stacked against them from day one.
Besides having a small litter, and inbred females will become less fertile the more she is inbred. If she is constantly inbred over and over, she probably won’t live past the second or third litter. And if she does, one of the before mentioned diseases is not close at hand, they are probably already present in the puppies.
Puppies are playful
We all know how it is with a new puppy. Your thoughts change from, oh, how cute, to I’m going to kill the dog! Of course, you would never actually kill a puppy but to say they are playful is an understatement.
Inbred puppies on other hand, tend to be under-weight and lethargic. They just don’t seem to have the spunk of a normal puppy. Some even look as if they are worried. They may even appear to look as if they are sad.
Ask your breeder for proof
While you are asking your breeder for references, ask them to provide you with a copy of the dog’s pedigree. If they won’t give you the pedigree, tell them you want definitive proof there are no chances of you purchasing an inbred puppy.
Offer to take your business elsewhere if they don’t. You might just find out real quick there is something wrong with the litter.
I find it absolutely stomach-turning a breeder, reputable or not, would allow inbred dogs in their kennel to begin with. Just do what I couldn’t do.
Research and get to work on the internet. And don’t settle for a particular breed because you found one for cheap!