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Discussion Starter #1
I have a question for those who have been in malteses for a long time. I have noticed that, in some of the posts about breeding, a lot of people have said that they do not breed their pups unless they have a show championship on them.

I know absolutely NOTHING about the maltese breed, other than my little Lizzie is the sweetest thing I've ever seen, but I've been in greyhounds for many years and my dad has been in beagles for longer than I've been alive. One thing we both agree on is that you do not have to have a championship on a dog to breed it. One reason we believe this is that there are A LOT of AKC judges who don't know a fig about what a proper greyhound our beagle should look like. Do you guys ever come across anything like this in maltese?

One of the reasons I quit showing greyhounds was because I knew the standard better than the judges and they kept putting up these giagantic greyhounds over the more moderate, correct, ones. I did performance with my greyhounds, and will start again once I graduate. You cannot run an overly large greyhound because he cannot take the turns and will fall every time. A greyhound was meant to course rabbits, if he cannot do that, then he isn't correct.

The problem my dad has is that a lot of judges believe a beagle should be "cute" when they are really a scent hound and should be judged by the set of the ears, the jowls and such instead of a "cute" face.

Since the Maltese is a toy breed, how do you qualify it? I know its probably not by performance, so is it just by what the judge wants or do you guys run into the same problem with judges putting up subpar dogs because they look cute or are big?
 

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I cannot answer your specific question since I don't show. But I understand what you mean. The problem I have with some people here is that they brainwash you in believing that ONLY show breeders are REPUTABLE breeders. Everybody else is a BACKYARD breeder. I am almost sure that some show their dogs only not to be labeled a backyard breeder. If you breed a Maltese without showing, even if you breed to standard, take all the precautions about health, people in this forum will say you are a backyard breeder and recommend not to buy one of your dogs. Stacy, Carina and Mary will be able to answer your question.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I didn't mean to imply anything about show breeders. I just know that in other breeds there are things other than a show judge to qualify a dog for breeding. I was just wondering if there is in the toy dogs also, or if they have to breed to a judge's standard.

If you look at the show german shepard and the working german shepard there is a VAST difference. I've had people from the working group say they wouldn't have a show german shepard because of the way their rear end drops, but show people seem to think this is the thing. I don't know enough about german shepards to make a qualified judgement, but I do know that I had the most fabulous greyhound bitch who was 62lbs, which is perfect if you look at the standard, but who looked like an over sized whippet in the greyhound ring. The judges wouldn't even look at her because of her size, but she could run the pants off of the rabbits and was phenominal on the coursing field.

My real question is: Is there a qualifying standard for maltese other than what a show judge says?
 

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I believe you need some outside opinion on a representative sample of your dogs if you want to have a reputable program.
Showing certainly has politics. It isn't perfect, but its often a good way to see how your dog compares to other dogs as well as seeing a number of other dogs in the breed on a regular basis. If you aren't out and constantly educating yourself, how do you know what is correct? How do you continue to learn about structure and genetics (talking with other breeders, going to seminars).
I have seen plenty of incorrect Labradors work fine in the field. It didn't make them correct. Personally, I would want a bit more than that be it a critique from an FCI show, evaluation by respected handlers/breeders, etc.
 

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The qualifying standard is our WRITTEN standard. Not all judges follow that when judging (ie picking handlers or someone they know, not being well educated on the breed or how to examine it).
Why would you show to judges that judge like that? Are you saying there were NO judges who judged the breed properly? AKC, UKC, and FCI?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I believe you need some outside opinion on a representative sample of your dogs if you want to have a reputable program.
Showing certainly has politics. It isn't perfect, but its often a good way to see how your dog compares to other dogs as well as seeing a number of other dogs in the breed on a regular basis. If you aren't out and constantly educating yourself, how do you know what is correct? How do you continue to learn about structure and genetics (talking with other breeders, going to seminars).
I have seen plenty of incorrect Labradors work fine in the field. It didn't make them correct. Personally, I would want a bit more than that be it a critique from an FCI show, evaluation by respected handlers/breeders, etc.
Of course you would want an outside opinion other than your own. Also, talking with breeders and researching your breed is of TOP importance. Knowing your standard and knowing the defects and what lines tend to carry this defect is imperative if you plan to breed. But you can get these things without going to shows. I made more contacts on the coursing field than in the show ring. One thing I noticed about show breeders, in greyhounds anyway, is that they have someone else show their dogs and the breeders are not usually there.

I'm not knocking showing your dogs. My dad is still an avid shower; I was just wondering if there is some quality of the maltese that may not be brought out in a show that should be looked at before breeding. Not all show champion dogs should be bred. Sometimes they get a championship because there is no other competition or because a certain judge, or judges, think the breed should look that way. Now this may not be in malteses. There may be tons of malteses in the show ring, but I haven't seen very many at all in East Texas.

I'm not trying to start an argument. I'm just trying to learn about the breed and asking questions is the only way I know how.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
The qualifying standard is our WRITTEN standard. Not all judges follow that when judging (ie picking handlers or someone they know, not being well educated on the breed or how to examine it).
Why would you show to judges that judge like that? Are you saying there were NO judges who judged the breed properly? AKC, UKC, and FCI?
I totally agree that the qualifying standard is the written standard. I've never shown in UKC or FCI so I know nothing about them. And, of course, I don't believe that all judges don't know what they are doing. I was just asking if maltese breeders ever have the same problems that other breeders do.
 

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Every breed has a "standard" a blue print that breeder's try to follow or developed. With Maltese they are considered a companion dog. Every breed has a "parent" club that monitors the breed and the standard.
Judges are just that judges. They have to study the breed to get to know it. Not every judge likes the same thing and judge to what they like vs. the standard. Which can suck. The best thing to do is to breed as close to the standard as you can or perceive it to be.
I don’t show and finish every dog I have, especially now, I cannot afford to do so. It is a costly hobby. Going to shows and visiting with other breeders who do is a good way to compare yourself to what is being shown. There are some breeders who never show but keep up on the standard and breed to the standard.
Yes, there are people who say they are showing or buy a dog and show it for awhile and do get it finished to try to eliminate the term “BYB” or broker that is attached to their name. It still doesn’t make them any more reputable than they were before. I think all the breeds have this type of people. I think more so in smaller breeds because they are easier to house than big dogs. People can hide them in their house to get out of being licensed.

At the last All Breed Show I was at, I did see some greyhounds that were within the standard and at first I thought they were over sized Whippets. LOL They were beautiful animals. Going to shows does show people what the true standard is supposed to be for the most part. It is a way to see how your Maltese stand up to the standard and if the judge knows their stuff, it can be a great thing.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Judges are just that judges. They have to study the breed to get to know it. Not every judge likes the same thing and judge to what they like vs. the standard. Which can suck. The best thing to do is to breed as close to the standard as you can or perceive it to be.
I don’t show and finish every dog I have, especially now, I cannot afford to do so. It is a costly hobby. Going to shows and visiting with other breeders who do is a good way to compare yourself to what is being shown. There are some breeders who never show but keep up on the standard and breed to the standard. [QUOTE]

This is what I wanted to know. Thank you for answering my question. This is what my dad does, and he doesn't win all of the time. I love greyhounds, but I've never had a litter and probably never will. Greyhounds, like small breeds, are over bred because of the greyhound racing industry, who, to me, are just like a puppy mill!! There do need to be some greyhound breeders who bred the dogs to the standard they should be bred to, but I'm not one. I admire those who breed for the betterment of any breed, but you are right when you say it is a VERY expensive endeavor if you do it correctly.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
At the last All Breed Show I was at, I did see some greyhounds that were within the standard and at first I thought they were over sized Whippets. LOL They were beautiful animals. Going to shows does show people what the true standard is supposed to be for the most part. It is a way to see how your Maltese stand up to the standard and if the judge knows their stuff, it can be a great thing.
This was my greatest gripe about going to shows with greyhounds! They aren't supposed to be the size of a great dane!:w00t:
 

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Sometimes I find this hard to explain. But since I am a teacher I guess the school analogy comes to me easiest. There is no school for dog breeders. But how does one distinguish themselves as having gained the expertise to call themselves a breeder? The world of dog shows (including showing, but also membership in breed clubs, attending seminars and networking with the most knowledgeable individuals in the breed) is how one learns about what it means to be a breeder.

It seems to me that most breeders who do not show do not have access to this vast network of breeders with this kind of experience and knowledge. They also lack the access to the knowledge of what is behind their pedigrees (health, temperament as well as conformation). Breeders can not breed successfully in isolation. For example, they have to go outside their own lines to find stud service. To find reputable breeders willing to share their established lines with you requires that you have shown the dedication to the breed of participating in the show world. Breeders with the best dogs are unwilling to share their lines with people who have not demonstrated the same level of dedication. If you are not seeking out the ideal (in temperament, health and conformation) then you are unlikely to produce something that serves to better the breed.

I have never bred a litter. I have now shown two dogs to their championship with a third hopefully on her way. I am actively learning about showing and breeding and networking with breeders/mentors who have been doing this for decades. I feel like I am on an apprentice course. I will eventually breed. But before I have done so I will have read multiple books on breeding, I will have attended seminars on genetics, health issues, conformation and more, I will have witnessed birth in toy breed dogs in videos and in person, I will have established contacts who can guide me every step of the way, I will have seen what my stud has produced, I will have studied the pedigrees of my dogs and matched them up for strengths and faults, and I will have personally been involved in this breed (owned/loved/rescued/trained/handled/shown in both conformation and obedience) for 20 years. Still, I will consider myself a novice.

Truly, most breeders I have met who do not show are happy to point to the flaws and the sinners of the show world and condemn. But those who do not show, also seem to lack the qualities I have described. They do not show this single-minded determination to do things the right way.
 

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Great explanation of the show world and how devoted our show friends are. Thanks everyone for your hard work and love of the breed.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Sometimes I find this hard to explain. But since I am a teacher I guess the school analogy comes to me easiest. There is no school for dog breeders. But how does one distinguish themselves as having gained the expertise to call themselves a breeder? The world of dog shows (including showing, but also membership in breed clubs, attending seminars and networking with the most knowledgeable individuals in the breed) is how one learns about what it means to be a breeder.

It seems to me that most breeders who do not show do not have access to this vast network of breeders with this kind of experience and knowledge. They also lack the access to the knowledge of what is behind their pedigrees (health, temperament as well as conformation). Breeders can not breed successfully in isolation. For example, they have to go outside their own lines to find stud service. To find reputable breeders willing to share their established lines with you requires that you have shown the dedication to the breed of participating in the show world. Breeders with the best dogs are unwilling to share their lines with people who have not demonstrated the same level of dedication. If you are not seeking out the ideal (in temperament, health and conformation) then you are unlikely to produce something that serves to better the breed.

I have never bred a litter. I have now shown two dogs to their championship with a third hopefully on her way. I am actively learning about showing and breeding and networking with breeders/mentors who have been doing this for decades. I feel like I am on an apprentice course. I will eventually breed. But before I have done so I will have read multiple books on breeding, I will have attended seminars on genetics, health issues, conformation and more, I will have witnessed birth in toy breed dogs in videos and in person, I will have established contacts who can guide me every step of the way, I will have seen what my stud has produced, I will have studied the pedigrees of my dogs and matched them up for strengths and faults, and I will have personally been involved in this breed (owned/loved/rescued/trained/handled/shown in both conformation and obedience) for 20 years. Still, I will consider myself a novice.

Truly, most breeders I have met who do not show are happy to point to the flaws and the sinners of the show world and condemn. But those who do not show, also seem to lack the qualities I have described. They do not show this single-minded determination to do things the right way.
This I understand. I've always owned and been around breeds who are supposed to perform to a certain standard also, so you know a greyhound is a great greyhound if it is a dual champion. You know a beagle is a great beagle if it is a Field Champion and a show champion, the same goes for most hounds and sporting dogs. I was just wondering how else you qualify a toy dog. But I guess there is no other way of qualifying a toy dog.

I was just curioius. I've been around show dogs all of my life, but never around toy dogs. The only other toy breed I've owned was an Italian Greyhound, who also coursed, so he was a performance dog too. :w00t: I just didn't know what the unspoken "rule" was with other toy breeds. I really never understood the rule with IGs either, though.

I do think that going to shows is a very good thing to do. If you have a dog that you believe meets the standard and you want to breed this dog, then I think you should take it to a show, I've just never thought that was the end of things.

Who are the gurus in maltese? Are there certain kennels who have been doing this so long they are concidered the top kennels? I know there are in greyhounds and beagles. Also, does anyone know if the Maltese Rx is a good magazine? I've learned a lot about greyhounds from just getting to know the people who write the articles for the greyhound magazines.

I guess when I get a breed of dog, I get obsessive. I want to learn everything about them. I've read MANY websites about the history of the maltese and such, but reading articles in a book, other than those mass produced about all dog breeds, or in a magazine that is endorced by the breed club, to me, is one of the best ways to learn about the breed. I may even start going back to dog shows to see who is showing maltese in my area and what their maltese look like.
 

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This I understand. I've always owned and been around breeds who are supposed to perform to a certain standard also, so you know a greyhound is a great greyhound if it is a dual champion. You know a beagle is a great beagle if it is a Field Champion and a show champion, the same goes for most hounds and sporting dogs. I was just wondering how else you qualify a toy dog. But I guess there is no other way of qualifying a toy dog.
This is very true. We do not have the same performance vs. conformation debate you see in working/hunting/sporting breeds. And so we can only find this network of knowledge and expertise among the conformation breeders.

Who are the gurus in maltese? Are there certain kennels who have been doing this so long they are concidered the top kennels? I know there are in greyhounds and beagles. Also, does anyone know if the Maltese Rx is a good magazine? I've learned a lot about greyhounds from just getting to know the people who write the articles for the greyhound magazines.
Of course this can be a controversial question. And not everyone would agree on the answer. I'll be happy to let others chime in with their opinions here rather than step into what could be a bit of a political debate. Suffice to say there are a number of "gurus" in Maltese.

As for the RX, it is just the AMA newletter. It is not a full length magazine as other breeds have. Our breed could certainly use more writers willing to share their knowledge (but many do participate in online forums).

I may even start going back to dog shows to see who is showing maltese in my area and what their maltese look like.
I hope you do this. To me (and I am only a bit biased here ;) ) Maltese are the quintessential show dog. Hard to imagine a more lovely breed to watch in the ring.
 

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I guess when I get a breed of dog, I get obsessive. I want to learn everything about them. I've read MANY websites about the history of the maltese and such, but reading articles in a book, other than those mass produced about all dog breeds, or in a magazine that is endorced by the breed club, to me, is one of the best ways to learn about the breed. I may even start going back to dog shows to see who is showing maltese in my area and what their maltese look like.
You are fortunate to have some wonderful Maltese breeders in Texas.

American Maltese Association
 

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Sometimes I find this hard to explain. But since I am a teacher I guess the school analogy comes to me easiest. There is no school for dog breeders. But how does one distinguish themselves as having gained the expertise to call themselves a breeder? The world of dog shows (including showing, but also membership in breed clubs, attending seminars and networking with the most knowledgeable individuals in the breed) is how one learns about what it means to be a breeder.

It seems to me that most breeders who do not show do not have access to this vast network of breeders with this kind of experience and knowledge. They also lack the access to the knowledge of what is behind their pedigrees (health, temperament as well as conformation). Breeders can not breed successfully in isolation. For example, they have to go outside their own lines to find stud service. To find reputable breeders willing to share their established lines with you requires that you have shown the dedication to the breed of participating in the show world. Breeders with the best dogs are unwilling to share their lines with people who have not demonstrated the same level of dedication. If you are not seeking out the ideal (in temperament, health and conformation) then you are unlikely to produce something that serves to better the breed.

I have never bred a litter. I have now shown two dogs to their championship with a third hopefully on her way. I am actively learning about showing and breeding and networking with breeders/mentors who have been doing this for decades. I feel like I am on an apprentice course. I will eventually breed. But before I have done so I will have read multiple books on breeding, I will have attended seminars on genetics, health issues, conformation and more, I will have witnessed birth in toy breed dogs in videos and in person, I will have established contacts who can guide me every step of the way, I will have seen what my stud has produced, I will have studied the pedigrees of my dogs and matched them up for strengths and faults, and I will have personally been involved in this breed (owned/loved/rescued/trained/handled/shown in both conformation and obedience) for 20 years. Still, I will consider myself a novice.

Truly, most breeders I have met who do not show are happy to point to the flaws and the sinners of the show world and condemn. But those who do not show, also seem to lack the qualities I have described. They do not show this single-minded determination to do things the right way.

Outstanding explanation as well as Jackies. For me, what is SO important, is the Show breeders, those that are truly show breeders or reputable breeders KNOW THEIR HEALTH LINES. From the Mommy all the way down, to the Daddy, all the way down. Additionally the newtwork they have in sharing information, about health and all of it, is invaluable.

I think this is what seperates a byb from a reputable breeder.

Beleive me, the breeders I got Kara and Tina Marie from couldn't be any nicer, couldn't love their babies any more, but I learned, that being nice, and loving their babies, just isn't enough. It took me awhile, but thank goodness for this forum.

Health has to be the primary goal and I do beleive that is a reputable/show breeders primary goal, with of course breeding to standard. In now way, does a reputable breeder want any known health problems in their line, or in who they are breeding.

With all that said, you still have to do your research and do it very carefully.
 

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As someone very involved in performance with Maltese, I do want to point something out...

With a dog of this size, true soundness is essential if you really want to go far in a physically tasking arena. Dogs without that soundness are predisposed to injuries. I will give an example of my 2 current competition dogs.

Soda Pop was purchased from a reputable breeder who was able to fulfill all of my requests from temperament to head structure to front and topline. He is nice enough to be sold on a show contract (though I neutered him). Soda is able to work for great lengths of time with great levels of difficulty. His soundness also allows him to be a skilled jumper. He has an efficient gate which allows him to get placements based on time in rally o.

Roo was purchased from a reputable breeder. I selected an outcross litter in hopes for an oversize dog. Roo is about 10 inches tall and just over 8 lbs. He has a darling face and decent front. His rear is extremely straight. His topline is a little off. He has tremendous drive to work and is an awesome agility dog. However, I am constantly watching him for knee and back injuries because of his structure. He is the first dog that was not show quality which I purchased for performance. Having done this, I see my error and will not compromise on conformation in the future.

While performance Maltese may be relatively rare, for long-term success meeting the standard on structure is essential.
 

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Outstanding explanation as well as Jackies. For me, what is SO important, is the Show breeders, those that are truly show breeders or reputable breeders KNOW THEIR HEALTH LINES. From the Mommy all the way down, to the Daddy, all the way down. Additionally the newtwork they have in sharing information, about health and all of it, is invaluable.

I think this is what seperates a byb from a reputable breeder.

Beleive me, the breeders I got Kara and Tina Marie from couldn't be any nicer, couldn't love their babies any more, but I learned, that being nice, and loving their babies, just isn't enough. It took me awhile, but thank goodness for this forum.

Health has to be the primary goal and I do beleive that is a reputable/show breeders primary goal, with of course breeding to standard. In now way, does a reputable breeder want any known health problems in their line, or in who they are breeding.

With all that said, you still have to do your research and do it very carefully.
Christine, that is such a good point (see bolded portion above). I used to think the same way, too. I've heard so many people (usually newbies) here on SM say that when defending the BYB they got their Malts from ... like it is OK as long as the puppies are treated well.

Most of the puppy-buying public do not know what we know and we are a teeeny minority who understands the reasons for buying from a breeder who shows. The word just hasn't gotten out to the masses or the point truly understood, even by some of our members, unfortunately. And really, most people just don't have the "stomach" to spend a $1,500+ on what they call "just a pet", unfortunately.
 
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