After reading and thinking through the ballot regarding Health Testing to enter the FUTURITY, do you think it would actually make the FUTURITY a better competition? [304 votes total]

yes (89) 29%
no (201) 66%
no opinion (14) 5%

Post Info  Comment
Posted By: Betsy

Posted On: 1 day ago
Views: 32

I test the sire and dam in advance of doing any breeding, so making it a requirement, before puppies can be nominated for the GDCA Futurity is personally irrelevant to me. I think that requiring health testing for the futurity may get more individuals in the habit of doing it....may be hard to convince some at first, but if we want a healthier breed you almost have to make it a requirement. I would rather the GDCA force testing, rather than AKC, Federal Government, or God forbid PETA....

I agree that testing for the most deadly health problems in our breed makes the most sense.
I don't understand why we test for hyperthyroidism as one of the requirements for a CHIC number. In 20 years of breeding danes I have never had a dane diagnosed with hyperthyroidism, although I tested it for it.... Is it a big a problem in our breed? Is it killing our danes? I'm just curious....

Posted By: Jessie

Posted On: 3 days ago
Views: 150
Response to "Old Timer"

I agree with you 100%

Posted By: OLD TIMER-1967

Posted On: 8 days ago
Views: 540

Don't get me wrong, I absolutely believe in testing. But forcing someone to test, just because you can. Why test if GDCA doesn't really care what the results are. And yet I can enter the National???

Posted By: Jessie

Posted On: 8 days ago
Views: 548

I think in both of these polls, we are getting away from the question. The issue is not "To test or not to test". The issue is will REQUIRING testing in order to enter the futurity make those who do not test, now test. Will it change anything to require people to test in order to enter. I think not. I think if people do not care about testing, they won't care about entering the futurity.

Posted By: Colette

Posted On: 8 days ago
Views: 569
Futurity and testing

Health and conformation are two separate things. We show our dogs to judges based on their conformation not their health.
What would be next? WD and WB will win based on their health testing? In that case we don't even have to go to shows anymore just send the judges our health certs.

I do think as breeders it is our responsibility to try to breed the most correct conformation and the healthiest longloved dogs we can.

I try to breed the best dogs conformation and health wise. Then again I could have the healthiest dog in town but if the conformation isn't there then I really don't want that dog in my breeding program either.

Posted By: David Gaffney

Posted On: 8 days ago
Views: 576
health testing for futurity

Hmm. Rhetorical question. Does anyone ever breed their stock before 2 years old? Let's assume you have a fabulous (and fabulously winning) dog younger than 2 that you want to stud out and you think that the pups will be suitable for futurity nomination. What about OFA certification? It is unreliable at best for stock under 2 years old. Does this mean that all upcoming futurity nominations must come from breeding stock older than 2? At an age when it is more likely that they will fail a thyroid test? Oh, that's right, you can still futurity nominate if the dog FAILS either the thyroid test or the (meaningless at under 2) OFA. Seems to me that this idea isn't going to achieve the lofty goals, while admirable, that those who advocate it think it will. Way too much wiggle room and opportunity for rationalization, while driving up the cost of breeding quality stock. Don't get me wrong; I firmly believe that reputable breeders producing quality stock should be doing health checks, if only so that they know where the problems (that they can fix)lie in their own breeding programs. But the reality is that there are dozens to hundreds more breeders out there who will never even think of futurity nominating a litter, so if they don't do health checks already this won't affect them. Consequently, in my opinion, establishing this requirement will do nothing to improve the overall quality of the breed since it's effect will be negligible.

Posted By: Ann Porwoll

Posted On: 8 days ago
Views: 605

The futurity is a show judging the best structure and over all dog on that day. It should also be a show case for the future of danes.

If we are perpetuating illness' by breed poor dogs - it does not give us much of a future to look forward to. Health testing is not a guarantee to fixing health issues but it is a step in the right direction instead of ignoring it.

It also show a breeders responsibility in tring to improve on what they have currently and for the furture.

Posted By: Sarah Black

Posted On: 8 days ago
Views: 611
Health Screen for GDCA futurity

I consider myself a conservative conformation breeder (I Bred First blue champion in TX,First Blue Dane UTD,First BIS/BISS Blue Dog) However My greatest concern has always been for the future health and preservation of the breed. I know that health checks while not perfect are an essential tool that all breeders should seriously consider using as a guideline in their breeding plans. I believe the GDCA is making a small but important step toward a Parent club that is truly pro-actively seeking to insure our breed is given a chance to improve in overall health. While health checks for the parents of futurity puppies may seem to be insignificant or inconvenient to many, every journey begins with a first step. I applaud the GDCA for putting it to the vote. I believe that many members are ready to start the journey. Sadly some will try to hold back the tide of the future as long as possible. I personaly believe this is to the detriment of the breed. Whatever the result of the vote, the line is drawn in the sand and you will know what is most important to the GDCA member by his conviction of his vote.
Sincerely Sarah Black Moonstruck Danes

Posted By: Cathy De La Garza

Posted On: 8 days ago
Views: 626
futurity a better competition

I would hope it would make it easier to select breeding pairs and easier for some of our breeders to "do the right" thing. I find it sad that this kind of pressure had to be placed on our board. The future is right in front of us and with their position they realize we need to continously improve this breed from all directions.
Cathy De La Garza

Posted By: Terry Goldman

Posted On: 8 days ago
Views: 663
Health Screening

Voting yes or no in my opinion is totally insignificant. I believe that the idea would be excellent if dogs rated low on the test were spayed and/or neutered and you know that would never happen. If the tests were used honestly to advance better healthy dogs, than yes, and that would never happen either. I do feel strongly that if we would put all this effort and work towards BLOAT, which I have always believed and studied has been caused by STRESS this would be really moving forward to giving Danes LONGEVITY,STRONGER AND HEALTHY breeding stock. To use the results as a code for entry into the Futurity, would be nice, but than our GDCA Codes are not honored nor valued NOW.

Posted By: Tammy Samples

Posted On: 10 days ago
Views: 881
Health Screening for Futurity

I believe any signs of health screening on dogs breeders are exhibiting in the ring and using as their breeding stock is a step towards a better healthy future in our breed. It shows breeders are doing more then just exhibiting dogs by structure, we are also exhibiting health. No it will probably not stop all health problems but again as I stated it, is a start towards showing all involved we all care towards making this breed be all it can be in health and quality. Pups exhibiting in the futurity coming from health tested stock is a way to say, "Hey, I got this puppy or bred this puppy from health tested parents" and I myself as buyer or breeder, am contributing to the health and welfare of this breed and proud to show it off in both conformation and health.

Posted By: Karen Martin

Posted On: 10 days ago
Views: 887
health screening for futurity

It may not make the futurity a better competition in and of itself. But health screening is the best way to better our breed for the future. The futurity is about improving our breed and showing off what you have accomplished in that area. How can you improve if you are not doing ANY health screens? The futurity is supposed to be the best of the best. It's no guarantee of health, nothing is. But it's better than nothing. It just promostes the breeders who are doing everything they can to improve the breed.

Posted By: Gina M Jaeblon

Posted On: 12 days ago
Views: 1114
Health testing & the futurity

Did everybody really read the ballot?? This gets better & better......It says
How much more contradictory can they get...they require a test to enter the futurity to ''BETTER'' the health of the breed ....but FOLKS if they FAIL...that's OK !
As an screening is so unaccurate ( with the exception of hips) , in order to be serious and sincere about health testing your dogs it would have to be done at least every 3-6 mos with our giant breed. Well ?????

Posted By: craig

Posted On: 12 days ago
Views: 1126
last post

Sure, and then 2 weeks after the Futurity one of the winners parents die of DCM. Why would that make the win more "Coveted"? Just because they passed a test months prior that meant nothing to begin with? The win should be coveted anyway, but to say that it would be more so I don't think so, and to whom exactly? I don't think anyone really cares, at least not if they didn't win.

Posted By: Sandy B

Posted On: 12 days ago
Views: 1147
Futurity Competition

I don't know about better, but it certainly would make it a more meaningful competition. I would surmise it would be an even more coveted victory in addition to the well deserved recognition from his/her peers.

Posted By: Gina M. Jaeblon

Posted On: 13 days ago
Views: 1242
health testing making the futurity better

...if anybody shows up !!!!!!!!!This is supposed to be fun. This is a breeder showing his pride in what he has produced, even if it isnt great. This isnt a test for a life insurance policy. Why do we speak of it as the future generation ; as MANY of those puppies never even see the show ring, and most dont even finish including many of the winners LIGHTEN up GDCA.

Posted By: Susan

Posted On: 13 days ago
Views: 1389

but they sure do load up the Rescues.

Posted By: Sandy

Posted On: Aug 18
Views: 1553
color v health

The difference is the majority of mismarks avoided through following the color code do not need medical attention to live a healthy life. Thyroid and other problems are prevalent in the breed, and the tests do assist in not only predicting what they may produce, but in assisting in the health and good life of the dog tested itself.

Personally I would love, and expect it to be available soon (if not already out there) to be able to do DNA test markers for dogs that carry for dilute. Once that is readily available, the GDCA ~could~ require futurity dogs to either be tested clear of the particular dilutes not wanted or show that the parents do not carry for the wrong dilutes. Until that is available, requiring a 3-4 color clear pedigree does not ensure anything at all, as dogs routinely produce mismarks from dilutes from even 20 generations or more back from the cross color.

I see the only reason to support health testing tied to the futurity entries AS enforcing the GDCA breeder's code of ethics. The code strongly recommends following the color code AND it strongly recommends doing available health testing.

That including health testing will diminish or dilute the Futurity does not make sense to me. There are other parent clubs that have even stronger requirements for many events and activities.

But what is the point of Conformation shows ?

I thought a conformation event was to evaluate dogs against the standard as both examples of the breed and as future breeding stock (that is the reason neutered/spayed animals may not compete). Health tests are designed to ensure the health of the particular animal as well as to let people know what might be brought into a breeding. The code of ethics recommends health testing breeding stock. I don't see the conflict.

Of course there are different views on this topic, and as Carol posted earlier, most agree to disagree. Ultimately breeders and puppy buyers make their own choices in what lines and people they want to deal with and what management tools they prefer to use.

Posted By: craig

Posted On: Aug 18
Views: 1612
poll question

The parent club has "lightened" there stand on mix color breeding, why? To enter the futurity years ago you had to have a 3-4 generation pure color bred dog. That to me is more important than knowing if the puppies parents passed a "thyroid" test. We are unique with our colors, why would we want to ruin something that people have worked 100's of years to keep? I do test my animals, and really don't know anyone that "never" tests for anything (although maybe there are). We ALL want healthy animals, and if mine didn't regularly live to be 8-9++ years old I would maybe test for things I thought were affecting that. But, until we can come up with a way to test for DEADLY diseases (Bloat and DCM) then what is the point on them "making" us test our dogs? I see people everyday breeding dogs that have generation after generation of DCM carriers/deaths in the pedigree, WHY tell me WHY would the breeders and the public breed them???? This is NOT rocket science, those dogs should NEVER be bred! We can breed out DCM we know that, bloat, not sure but when/if we could you bet I'll try! I use those diseases above simply because they are the two BIGGEST killers of our dogs.
I just don't see where this will help the dogs for the most part. If they want our dogs to be "Great Danes" lets start by having them look like Great Danes first (as in color), and try to inforce the "Code of Ethics" we have now, instead of making up new things that don't really matter. Everyone should test there animals for whatever diseases have effected them, I am NOT against the testing of our dogs! Just want them to look like Great Danes in a 100 years, so in my next life I can still have one!! and I don't particularly like fawniquins or blue brindles or worse yet a brindlequin.

Posted By: Sandy

Posted On: Aug 17
Views: 1698
a better competition

It might make it a better competition in that as it's a showcase for the club as well as for breeders it would exemplify the club's continued interest and commitment to trying to breed beautiful AND healthy dogs.

I don't think the many people that have dogs affected by the diseases currently tested for would think they are a non issue. Having a blind, crippled or debilitated dog is not much more fun than a dead dog.

I also do not understand if a breeder is "concerned" enough with the breed to commit to a futurity eligible breeding and plan to show in it, they are not interested in their own dog's welfare to give it basic health care - for example having a vet listen to it's heart.

If the point of the futurity is to look to the future of the breed, or what best represents it, shouldn't it include (as other breed clubs do) the Parent club's stated values? The code of ethics already strongly recommends health testing. With this upcoming vote we will see if the membership still believes that.

Posted By: Craig

Posted On: Aug 17
Views: 1703

When we have tests that actually diagnose deadly diseases at a young age, THEN maybe what you say and what the parent club wants to do will make any sense. Because lets face it eyes, hips and elbows and thyroid problems are not killing our dogs.............the biggest problems today are DCM and bloat, neither of which can be "diagnosed" yet until they happen.....

Wake up people it's not about the health testing.......

Posted By: Randy Weaver

Posted On: Aug 17
Views: 1739

MAking it a better competition, maybe not, maybe so, make the breed a better breed, absolutly.

Posted By: Carol Grossman

Posted On: Aug 17
Views: 1750
Futurity Better Competition

It might not improve the quality of the competition, but it just might mean that the competition is healthier and will live longer.