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How did they cope in days gone by ?

Discussion in 'Dog Breeding' started by shazalhasa, Jul 25, 2009.


  1. shazalhasa

    shazalhasa PetForums VIP

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    Just wondered if anyone could enlighten me regarding the conception and whelping in days gone by... you know, before humans started taking over everything.
    I had a lab that whelped two litters of pups back in the 70's. Now I was young but not so young that I can't remember it all. There was no human intervention when she was mating with the dog, they were in the garden and left to get on with what was natural. When it was time for her to have her puppies she didn't have any fancy whelping box, she had her bed on the floor in the kitchen and we all watched from the living room via the serving hatch. All 13 pups came out with no problem and all were healthy and survived. For the first week we were not allowed to touch them for fear she might reject them with them then having our scent on them.

    It's all so different now, we are told that we 'have' to hold them when they conceive as they don't know what they are doing and could hurt each other. We are told that we 'have' to assist with the whelping as the bitch doesn't know what to do now that they are so far removed from wild dogs... being domesticated and all that.

    To do some investigating I've been watching vids on youtube of puppies being whelped and found to my surprise two that really stood out from the rest. The first was a maltese terrier that had whelped one puppy by herself and the second was coming feet first (the feet were poking out), the bitch grabbed that pup by her teeth and pulled her out safely and the pup was fine. There didn't seem to be any human intervention at all apart from the video that was being taken... incidentally she wasn't in a whelping box either.
    The other video that stood out was a chihuahua that had been taken over by it's human, first pup was breach, the human pulled it out and the pup died, the second pup again breach was again pulled out by the human, seemed to take forever and again the pup died. There were only two in this little dogs litter and both died :(
     
    DKDREAM and marion..d like this.
  2. Nicky09

    Nicky09 PetForums VIP

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    I'm not a breeder but I'd say that as little intervention as possible is probably a good idea unless something is going wrong and you have to step in. I don't understand the holding the dogs during mating from what I've seen with maybe a few exceptions bulldogs etc they can manage great on their own.
     
  3. davehyde

    davehyde Banned

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    interesting that some dogs cant manage on their own.

    that means to me that the breed has been so changed by selective breeding that is not capable of sustaining itself.

    interesting concept when i assume it is the show people who have influenced this trait.

    so the very idea of producing a dog that is incapable of breeding without help is an abnormality and gross arrogance on the part of the breeders / standards.

    no way is a dog like that entitled to even be called a breed anymore it's disgusting.

    form and function????? what a laugh!!!!!!!
     
  4. sallyanne

    sallyanne Guest

    Do you breed ?

    My dogs have always been held after they tie to prevent damage occurring to both dogs.
    My bitches have always been left to whelp on their own but with us close by incase intervention is needed.
    We had to help our bitch several times our first pup was breach and would have died had O/H not got it out,one pup out of the litter was stillborn,then we ended up at the vets as one was completely stuck by it's shoulders in the birth canal.
    Had we left her to get on with it,she and all the pups would have died.
     
  5. Acacia86

    Acacia86 PetForums VIP

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    Everything has changed over the years.

    We are constantly learning and understanding new aspects of animal management/care/breeding etc.

    People hold their dogs in the 'tie' beacsue their bitches (and studs) mean a lot to them and don't want them injured! I know if i bred dogs i would do everything in my power to prevent any injury of any kind. Imagine going back over to the dogs that were left to mate alone to find the bitch in a state due to serious injuries??? Doesn't bear thinking about.

    Or what if i fight broke out and there was serious injuries to either or both dog?? Who would be responsible for that??

    Where the whelping is concerned, bithes can whelp perfectly fine all by themselves. Owners watch because god forbid anything does happen they can help in a split second and get on the phone to the vet. Leaving a bitch to whelp all alone isn't done these days, there are too many risks. Imagine coming back to find mum and pups dead??? Again it just doesn't bear thinking about.

    Dogs did breed and whelp successfully back then, but if you really go deep into it, you'll find many many more injuries and deaths relating to mating/whelping if the dog is left alone to do both parts.

    I can honestly say that if bred dogs, it wouldn't matter if my dogs could mate alone or whelp alone i wouldn't let them, simply because i would want to prevent preventable injuries etc.


    Things have changed a lot since back then, you can hold puppies, in fact it can be good for them to have early handling. Humans are a lot more caring about animals welfare in this day and age. I am not pointing this statement at you at all, i am simply generlising.

    You must believe in all the change though? Because you didn't leave you dogs to mate alone.
     
    #5 Acacia86, Jul 25, 2009
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2009
  6. shazalhasa

    shazalhasa PetForums VIP

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    Interesting that nearly 60 people have viewed this topic but only 4 have commented.

    I can see your point Dave and I think the same as Nicky, the less intervention the better.

    I will say this, I have recently mated my bitch with one of my dogs and yes I was there to hold them once penetration had taken place but if it hadn't happened then no way would I have got involved in the way some... no... many do. If my dogs can't do what nature and instinct tells them too then I feel that they shouldn't be bred.
    When it comes time for the litter to be born, again I will be there beside her watching, I have no intention of taking over as soon as she starts. It's her job not mine. If there is any difficulty that means intervention is required then I will do only what is needed. I really hope that she will be a good mother to her pups and do all that is necessary to look after them. If not then I won't be breeding her again.

    I don't believe in all of the changes, I think a lot of it is really OTT and I certainly won't be allowing anyone to handle the pups until they are at least a few days old and even then it won't be more than a stroke.
     
  7. cassie01

    cassie01 PetForums VIP

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    I personally think you should leave them too it, they still have the instincts to do it themselves, its just that some people have had problems so now people are too sared to let them get on with it. breeding for looks hasnt helped either not only has it caused behaviour and health issues but some bad mothers have been bred from over and over again and so passing down bad mother genes.

    Humans living in tribes etc have babies all the while without having to go to a hospital and have loads of check ups. women there go off have their babies then carry the baby and go back to working. no fuss at all. we in western society are just too paranoid.
     
  8. davehyde

    davehyde Banned

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    what i meant was, if some breeds like the bulldog mentioned cannot physicaly do the act in my opinion they are so adulterated through selective breeding they are no longer a 'proper' dog.

    if for instance they need to be put on box or cant mount the mitch because of sme breed specific problem. surely any 'proper' dog would be able to mount a bitch in the 'wild' and get on with it.

    i dont mean being their to help through any problems, that is sensible. just the fact that some find it impossible to do because say for instance they have bred to have stumpy legs or something.
     
  9. Ridgielover

    Ridgielover PetForums Senior

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    In answer to the original question - "How did they cope in days gone by?" - I would suspect that more puppies and bitches died during birth.

    I also don't agree that dogs should be overly assisted to mate. I believe that dogs that don't have the natural instinct or ability to procreate shouldn't be artificially bred from.

    However, there's no way that I would leave my dog or bitch to mate unsupervised. Once they have tied, I like to make sure that they don't try to pull apart, I don't want either my stud dogs or my bitches hurt unnecessarily. I also want to be there when my bitches give birth, to supervise that things go well. If necessary, I will tie off a cord, break a bag or call the vet.
     
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