Shiba Rage

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This was a response to issues in one of my Shiba Inu Facebook groups, where queries about testing or purposeful breeding are often met with accusations of superciliousness.

I, for one, am sick and tired of how “breeding this dog is not in the best interest of the breed” is equated with “All cream Shibas should be shot while simultaneously kicking a homeless war veteran while screaming NUKE THE UNBORN BABY WHALES FOR JESUS AND MUHAMMAD.”

Look, we like cream Shibas. We don’t advocate breeding them because the cream dilutes the strong red and black and sesame that is one of the distinguishing features of the Shiba.  That doesn’t make them bad and it doesn’t mean that breeders stab pale puppies to death while invoking Cthulhu.

Likewise, saying that not testing for *known genetic health issues in the breed* makes someone a crappy breeder is because it… does. You have the tools to make a real difference to the breed and dogs in general and you don’t do your utmost to ensure your pups have strong joints and eyes?  You are what every responsible breeder, rescuer, and owner learns to hate, because you knowingly create animals without doing your best to keep them healthy and pain free.

Anyone who has a knee injury, stand up. Does it hurt?  Now imagine that happening all the time because you have no other choice of locomotion and you have no way of telling someone to get you to a goddamn doctor.  Welcome to luxating patella.  It’s genetic and it’s painful and it gets worse over time unless you shell out for a surgery that can cost several thousand dollars, depending on whether one or both joints are affected, severity, health of the dog, etc. etc.  And the happy companion you were supposed to have to walk and play with can’t go on any kind of long walk and spends a lot of time not doing much because it hurts. 

People who give a shit about their dogs don’t want to produce this. They fight actively not to produce it.  Anyone who doesn’t is doing their puppies and their puppies’ owners a huge disservice.  That’s why we say ‘responsible’ breeder. Responsible. Response. There is no apathy in serious dog breeding; there is active research and evaluation, not wilful ignorance and a casual assumption that Nature can take care of everything. (Nature sucks, by the way. Examine the physics of the human knee sometime)

Yes, it can happen to dogs from tested clear parents, but the thing is, it happens LESS and, gradually, through a dedicated breeding program, it can systematically be eliminated to the point where affected animals show up extremely rarely. That doesn’t mean you can stop testing, though… oh, no. You keep testing, you keep checking because you don’t want a random gene dance to bring the nasty back into what you’re breeding.

And then, of course, you’re online and someone blather on about how there’s no point to genetic testing ‘because it can happen even if dogs are healthy and tested’.  It’s like you spend your life trying to eliminate drunk driving, only to have a bunch of people tell you that there’s no point to prosecuting or restricting drunk drivers ‘because drunk drivers are going to happen anyway’.

And then you ask a few pointed questions about whether someone with adorablesweetcuteomg puppies has thought about this and we’re back to Shiba jihad again.

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3 Comments

  1. Also.. A well bred Shiba, or any dog, is a thing of beauty. The way the move is especially important, and it takes years of study and mentoring to learn it. Then you breed toward it.
    Not having this knowledge and breeding anyway.. Why? Good breeders are happy to have serious students. You just have to be patienr and committed.

  2. Case in point: the guy who has the brother to my shiba, who came from a couples home that mate their non-AKC shiba’s. My shiba had his first experience of a luxating patella by 6 months. He has a minor (fortunately) heart murmer. He has an acreptid (sp?) testicle. And, he has skin allergies. The guy with his brother, who interestingly enough is a PASTOR (!!!), decided to buy a female and breed at home too. When I first learned of this back when it was still an idea of his, I expressed my concern due to the apparent genetic issues. He stated, “my boy doesn’t have any of those issues.” He carried forward to getting his female and now breeds them, not sure how frequently. I’m in these facebook groups (though didn’t see this argument), and I also do online rescue/crossposting for shelter animals. I scream all the time about the massive population of ignorant, irresponsible, useless humans who have no respect for what an animal goes through. They never stop to recognize, “what does this poor animal experience”. They don’t give a shit because they don’t have the capacity to think of anyone besides their own selfish concerns, or their own laziness. And, as we know, millions of animals (perhaps billions worldwide) suffer in small ways, and in big ways! I am certainly NOT one for government controlling people, BUT, in the case of animal protection – we NEED extremely strict laws about breeding and spaying/neutering!! And, anyone caught breeding irresponsibly should pay huge fines and lose the ability to own animals. The better people always end up having to pay for the effing retards out there, but if it could avoid adding more animals to this miserable world and suffering being homeless, euthanized, having medical issues, or going through pain, neglect, etc., then it needs to be!

    Being on facebook for the purpose of helping animals really makes life a challenge. Seeing just how many suffer, and just how many worthless POS humans there are leaves anger in our hearts to fester and grow, more every day. This is no way to live, yet we don’t have a choice! We must help every animal we can. Maybe, just maybe, a day will come where all humans finally wake up and realize how to be loving, peaceful, and harmonious with all of nature and other living things! Doubtful, unless the world comes to and end, or humans are just eradicated from the planet (truly what we deserve)!

    I own a shiba and I look out for homeless/rehomed shiba’s everywhere. I went to a shelter over a week ago to try and save one before someone else adopted him. Unfortunately, someone was adopting as I got there. It is NOT a good match, and the concern for that dog is with me everyday. I do not want this breed exploited, used, ending up with idiots who will not bother respecting them for what/who they are, or who will care for them properly. Yet, it is happening more and more everyday and there isn’t a damn thing I can do about it.

    Thank you for posting this issue. If only we could get those home/backyard breeders to read it! <3

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