What is it about a dogs pedigree that fascinates people so much? Is it because people base their dogs worth on the past accomplishments of their dogs ancestors? Is it because they hope their dog will have a better chance of being good because it is a descendant of titled dogs?
A pedigree IS important to a certain extent. But far more important is the quality of the actual dog in question. If the dog is below average then it makes no difference if the dog is off a Grand Champion or the junkyard dog down the street. In the hands of a knowledgeable breeder a pedigree can be a useful tool to help predict the quality of future breedings. In the hands of the majority of dog owners, a pedigree is essentially useless. It’s merely a piece of paper or a link to an online pedigree database that people use to “show off” their sub-par/unaccomplished dogs. How many people do you see posting their dogs pedigrees for basically no reason? How many people do you see asking, “How’s that dog bred?”, rather than, "Who bred that dog"?, “How good is that dog?”, or “What’s that dogs strengths and weaknesses?” People justify breeding sub-par dogs based on their pedigrees because ‘so and so’ was cold but he produced Grand Champion ‘so and so’. This is the exception, not the rule. This is a low percentage breeding practice.
I urge everyone to worry LESS about pedigrees and MORE about the actual quality of the dogs they are working with. Everyone is a dog breeder these days. They sell pups with pretty and not so pretty pedigrees to people who are buying them because of the names on the pedigrees. They have very little first-hand knowledge of the actual dogs in the pedigrees. They hear Grand Champion ‘So & So’ was this and that, but never saw him or any of his offspring. They read some things online or in a magazine about this dog and now they are an expert. This endless cycle is the reason for the over-population of our breed and so many average to below average dogs.
It takes years and years of working with the same genetic pool to really learn about your dogs and to be able to accurately predict the quality of their offspring. Stop breeding pedigrees and start breeding strengths and weaknesses. If you are going to buy a dog, forget about the pedigrees and worry more about WHO you are buying your dogs from. Bill Reynolds taught me early on “It’s not how the dog is bred. It’s who bred them and why.” We all need to let that sink in…