It's a shame that most of the "Designer dogs" i've seen out there are UGLY!
On a separate note, I agree with Leema. I think mixing two different breeds and calling it a new name (and a silly name at that) is a little silly. I'm a supporter of breeding dogs in hopes to accomplish certain traits from each (after all, thats how selective breeding starts, look at the Dogo Argentino), but "designer dogs" as far as i've noticed are only wanted for their looks.
I dated a guy for six months who had a shar-pei pit bull mix. He always referred to her as a "Sharbull". He would constantly tell me "She's NOT a mix, she's a purebred."
Um, no, darling, she's not. She's a sharpei pit mix. Get over it.
I swear.... some people give a bad name to reputable breeders... :dogdry:
that's so funny! Maybe "Sharbull" would be a nice name or nickname for the dog though
ironically, since my dog is a white german shepherd, I often get people coming up to me to ask if HE is a designer dog! (He's not - the white color gene is inherent in the german shepherd gene pool, it's just a recessive gene)
The names they come up with are ridiculous...I very much agree. When people ask what Zeke is they also try to come up with some dumb breed name. Border heeler, Blue Collie, Australian Collie(actually not a bad name, but no), Heeler Collie...the list goes on. NO, he's half border collie, half blue heeler. That's it, that's all, he's a half-breed. A very lovable half-breed, at that. ^^ By the way |_|_a, your "designer" white GSD is gorgeous. =)
We saw a new one the other day. There was a woman in a local store holding the smallest dog I think I've ever seen. When we asked her what it was, she replied "A Porky". After we looked quizzically back at her, she elaborated, it's a cross between a Miniature Poodle, and a Yorkshire Terrier (Yorkie). So, there you have it, the Porky.
I have a friend with a puggle and she paid top dollar for him, more then I paid for my pure breed boston terriers. It's ridiculus, there such variation from dog to dog with these breeds.
My friend has a hyper, crazy, hard to control little puggle girls while her friend has a lazy 40lbs (4 month old) puggle. They are completely different at least with pure breeds you have a little something to go on with their temperment (although I know each dog is different). I know my berense is going to be lazy and my bostons jumpy, but if I bought a puggle who knows what I would get.
40 lbs at four months???? That's very unusual. Mud's only 31, and she's a 4 year old Border Collie! There's just no reason to pay such high prices for a mutt. A porky....now that's one of the dumbest names I've heard as of yet. Is it a pig or a mutt; who knows? Most of those designer breeders just randomly crossbreed, rather than breeding to produce a certain kind of dog with a certain quality in mind. I'm sorry, but if I had $500-1000+ to spend on a dog, it most certainly would not be a designer dog. It would be one of established breeding, from quality stock, and I would have a good idea of what to expect out of it. If I wanted to buy a mutt, I'd rather adopt one from a shelter. Or even adopt a purebred from a shelter....it's one million times better. This "designer breeding" is basically a string of overpriced puppy mills.
The problem I have with designer dogs is that back yard breeders are crossing first generation and/or limited gene pool (their own) dogs to create these Puggles, Poo-cocks etc. Just because a dog is AKC doesn't mean they are suitable for breeding. So what you get may be a labdoodle that sheds and has the drive of a field lab and needs 6 hours a day running to be happy. Many people aren't prepared for this misrepresentation and give the dog up. There is no predictor with early and first generation cross breeds which traits will be present or recessive and show up later. The worst thing is that hobby breeders do not require spay/neuter contracts so the pet population still explodes but with designer unwanted dog/mutts. I wouldn't buy a purebred from a hobby breeder either for the same reason. No real working knowledge and no purpose other than $$.
Not often do you find a hobby breeder with health certified dogs (OFA hips, elbows, hearts, eyes, thyroid etc) at the proper breeding age specifically breeding for healthy individuals. With many crosses there is no breed standard and no breed purpose, exceptions to hunting and sled dogs etc, there is no way to judge or predict, if unknowledgeable, what certain traits will do to the generations to come. Many crosses I see are concentrated on a look or a quality like hypoallergenic (a myth?), which has nothing to do with health. As with the GSD bred for appearance with not enough regard to his working purpose. Hunting, sledding, flyball dogs all are bred with traits to produce hearty, healthy, working dogs so there is consideration given to longevity and genetic disease. That's where I see the separation of knowledge and standard.
While a cross breed or mutt may be wonderful if we go to a back yard breeder it seems to me we are trading the lives of those pups for the ones in the shelters that are being killed each year. It's the same roll of the dice for unknown genetics, behavior, & health. So rather than lining the pockets of these breeders I would go to a shelter. I do know of some new breeds that have a few responsible breeders that do a vast amount of research and are dedicated to the things I listed so I'm not saying every crossing is bad. My Goldens are crosses of a lot of dogs but the purpose for those crosses was very different than the standards of aesthetic that seem to be very popular today.
And I agree the poor ACD in TX is not the same dog it was generations ago. Temperament and being biddable seem to have suffered with health. I still miss my little ACD.
Indeed "designers" can still become loving family pets. The original idea was well-intentioned, but once people caught on to how profitable it was, they just started buying and breeding like mad. This is where backyard breeders really started hitting the designer market, resulting in most designer dogs being generally unhealthy.
Breeds of today in general are not at all what they used to be. The Pit Bull Terrier was meant to be just that---a terrier. Much smaller than the pitties of today. I overheard a man in Petsmart just the other day who was bragging about his "150 pound Pitty, holding the record for the largest in the world." Pits were not meant to be that large by any means. Fighters found the dog's extreme success in the ring and started breeding for size to get a bigger, stronger dog. Granted, Pits have always been stocky, muscular dogs...but not intended to be so large.
Border Collies, the working type, were initially bred in Scotland and a select few other places solely on how they worked. Originally, some sheepherder had a collie-like dog who he really liked as a working dog, and he bred it to another good working dog, and so it goes. It wasn't until much later that health was incorporated, but even still show quality and working quality BCs aren't always bred with the same values in mind. Health is much, much, much more important these days(with professional breeders), but show breeders aren't looking for a BC who can work sheep or run an agility course at blinding speed. Working breeders who breed solely for work don't guarantee their puppies will win conformation shows. But they'll guarantee that they are healthy and will work livestock great or perform in sports well. Because of the original breeders of the "BC", they vary greatly. It wasn't the looks sheepherders were looking for, it was the work. Border Collies are perhaps the most various of all breeds in terms of just general appearance. They're mostly the same, but there are many individual differences. The Scottish BCs tend to be much more similar and have a few slight differences compared to those of other countries.
Plus, the less picky breeders don't take into account what they're breeding...
Let's say they have an American Lab and an English Lab(do some research, there is a difference), and produce Labradoodles from both. Their personalities will be drastically different, size will differ. But all your English Labbydoodles have been so laid-back and intelligent that you advertise your breedings as producing calmer, easy to care for puppies. Then someone ends up with a Marley from your American Lab/Standard Poodle litters and wants to know what the hell happened.
The idea itself isn't all that "bad," necessarily. But the majority of breeders don't take the right precautions and have the right values in mind. That's the downside.
I am far more okay with designer dogs than I am with breeding dogs that are pedigreed but unhealthy because of it. The GSD has already been mentioned but pugs, boxers, bulldogs, doxies, all have problems. I'd rather see a puggle than a pug, just because I think they are probably genetically predisposed to be healthier. Yes, this is a stereotyped and over generalized view, but it's taken from dogs that I've seen so it's the view I've come up with.
As far as the money that is being charged for the pups that just boils down to economics. A dog is worth what someone will pay for it. No more, no less. If you can get a large sum of money for a labradoodle then that dog, mixed breed that it is, is worth a large sum of money. If you can't get 50 dollars for a pedigreed dog then it isn't worth $50. Even if every quality of the pedigreed dog, including being able to take part in AKC purebreed sports, biddability, life-span, temperament, etc. is better (and I'm certainly not saying that is the case). Value is determined by buyers.
I've seen arguments that go both for and against pedigreed dogs; I've seen people who would say that it should be law that only pedigreed breeding stock from registered breeders should be allowed to produce puppies, and I've seen arguments that no responsible person would ever allow a litter to be born, pedigreed or not, until all of the shelters become no kill shelters and no dog is being euthanized for simple lack of a home. To me those are both far-fetched ideas. If someone wants a designer dog, if they have the money to pay for a designer dog, if they are going to do their best to keep that dog happy and healthy and provide for it's needs then they should get a designer dog.