Our lovely Scribble has asked yet another question. Thank you, Scribble!
I’m assuming Ms. Pup is spayed. How is the breeding program determined for guide dogs at her school?
She’s quite spayed, thank goodness. 🙂 At GDF (although not at every school), cross-breeds are not used as breeding stock, so these dogs are spayed or neutered. Females are, I think spayed after their first heat. Purebreds are evaluated after about a year, with even more exacting standards than guide dogs, if you can believe that. If they are accepted as breeders, they are sent to live with a caretaker until they are needed, and then brought to the school for breeding. Females in heat are always brought to the school, but they aren’t bred more than twice a year. Bitches are retired at about seven, unless there’s a reason to retire them earlier, and studs are retired around ten.
However, GDF has just purchased some really neat freezing technology for preserving dog gametes, so soon we will be able to send and receive breeding stock all over the world. Sending genetic material is much easier than sending a dog. This will help our breeding stock in a lot of ways. See what your donations get us? Frozen pupsicles from England! 🙂
Speaking of which….