Most reputable breeders are breeding for themselves in hopes of improving their line of dogs with each generation. Sometimes you will get lucky and have a litter with all puppies being outstanding examples of the breed, but truly that is the exception. Most breeders are happy to have one fine dog that stands up well to the standard that the breed club writes for the breed. It is the blueprint for which you go forward with. Temperaments and health are equally as important, as we do not live with all of the dogs that we produce and it is not fair to the puppy buyer to have to live with difficult or unhealthy dogs.
The puppies hit the 8 week mark, which is the critical time for evaluation. Whilst I had hoped for another wonderful girl from this repeat breeding.......it was not to be this time. Here are the four puppies profile pictures...........can you tell me which one stands out to you?
Standing with the puppies is my youngest daughter, Hannah. Hannah has been raised with the dogs as she and my oldest Cavalier are only months apart in age. She is a fantastic little dog handler and just adores all of the dogs. You may ask.............."how did you get the puppies to stand so still?" Peanut-butter.......LOL.
With one of the puppies though, you will notice that she is nibbling on a piece of ham instead.........she loved the peanut-butter so much so that I was afraid she was going to choke on it..!
The puppy that I call Big Boy (I need to come up a real name now) will stay, at least for a while. I will run him on to see if he continues to hold his body together as he grows for the show ring. Breeders are much harder on the boys at evaluation time, than the girls because you can not improve on them. With a girl, you can try to find a boy that will overcome a fault or two, when breeding for nice puppies........but the boys don't have that luxury.......they need to be really nice to go forward in a breeding program.
Whist all of these puppies have great temperaments and will make lovely companions, only one meets the standard close enough to go forward into a breeding program. The other puppies all have wonderful homes waiting for them.
Now Back To Knitting
(Too many hobbies my dh keeps telling me......too many hobbies)
With my morning coffee, while I read my favorite blogs, I have been slowly working on this Morehouse Merino Scarf. As it was moving along, I wasn't sure that I liked the striping effect. Morehouse recommends using 2 skeins at a time, alternating every 2 rows, which I decided to do after the second narrow green stripe showed up. I still wasn't sure that I liked it and was going to rip it out and work on a lace scarf instead, but something held me back.....................
If you could feel just how soft and extra cushiony (is that a word) you would understand my hesitation. The stitch in this pattern gives the fabric a WONDERFUL handle. I decided that given it is Paprika and I plan on wearing that paprika sweater and the paprika vest planned for my hand-spun yarn, a lot, that the softness of this fabric outweighed any of my questions about the striping.
Spring IS coming.............did you see the grass that little puppy is standing on?