THE STUD DOG
LAST week, we dealt with brood bitch. Of course, the other main actor in the breeding drama is the male dog, the bull. Within the context of focused and controlled breeding exercises, this animal is also referred to as the stud dog.
The male partner must be sought out with some serious objectives in mind. Both the breeders (stud dog and brood bitch owners) must know whether the chosen stud dog has an affable temperament or whether he is a fierce, vicious dog which might not only be rough on the female, with which he is to be mated, but also might pass on the vicious streak to the offspring he has sired. Also, you do not wish a mangy, diseased male dog mating with a healthy brood bitch. His size is also important, in that you do not want a heavy male injuring a delicate female.
The important thing is to understand that it is imperative to choose the stud dog well in advance of the actual mating. If a stud dog has made a career of provably producing strong and vibrant puppies, especially if his mating prowess was over a long period and with several bitches, then it stands to reason that he will sire a successful litter with the brood bitch being presented for mating.
Some breeders here in Guyana offer a stud service. If you have an outstanding bitch from that bloodline, you may give serious thought to using a stud from that same strain to reinforce the best qualities in the offspring. Remember to take note of the earlier discourse on Inbreeding and Linebreeding (“PET CARE” – 23 May 2021).
N.B. It is the responsibility of the owner of the bitch to come to a clear understanding with the owner of the stud dog concerning the breeding terms. Usually. a stud fee is paid at the time of the mating, or the stud’s owner may agree to take the “pick of the litter”, which is one puppy (or more) of his own choosing, according to the size of the litter. The age of the puppy (or puppies) being allocated to the owner of the stud dog should be agreed upon in advance of the mating. If the bitch does not conceive, the stud’s owner may offer a return service at no extra charge. However, this is not obligatory in any way. Terms and conditions vary with the circumstances and policies of the owners. Once they are formally agreed and documented, there will be no misunderstandings at a later date.
A potential stud should be kept in top physical condition with regular exercise, routine health check-ups and a sound diet. Excessive weight is a severe handicap to a stud dog. As indicated above, he could be too heavy to mount a bitch. On the other hand, a poorly kept run-down, emaciated dog is unsatisfactory.
Stud dogs of larger breeds should be x-rayed for bone and joint disorders (see “PET CARE” 30th May, 2021). Dogs with hip/elbow dysplasia should not be offered as a stud.
Before your dog is used as a stud for the first time, check to be sure he has no problems that interfere with successful mating. Some male dogs have a long flexible forepart to the penis. If it bends backward, it could make intromission (penetration) difficult, even impossible. If this is the case, then he should not be used as a stud dog.
Red, pimple-like bumps or growths on the penis should receive veterinary attention. Lacerations and erosions tend to bleed when the dog has an erection. During intercourse, blood, if mixed with semen, reduces the motility of the sperm, and reduces the possibility of conception.
Other abnormalities are, inter alia, stricture of the foreskin; an infection beneath the sheath; abnormal or undescended testicles; and a discharge from the penis. More about these conditions, when we discuss Diseases of the Male Genital Tract. If one of these physical defects and ailments/ diseases is present, the dog should be examined and treated by a veterinarian before mating. In fact, there should be great discussion as to whether this dog (stud) should be used at all.
Please support the vaccination, spay and neutering campaigns/programs carried out by Humane Societies, the objective of which is to reduce cruelty to and suffering of animals, especially the “stray’ dogs which abound along highways and by-ways, predominantly of coastal Guyana.