A Word from the Breed Founder*
This letter to owners of ISSR Shiloh Shepherds was mailed out in the summer of 2000. It has been on our website since that time and is reprinted here for historical purposes only.
Our Genetic Task Force (as of January 2011) consists of:
Dear Shiloh Owner,
First and foremost I would like to congratulate you on being part of this special group of people that have chosen one (or more) of these wonderful dogs with whom to share your home!
As most of you know, I have dedicated my life toward the development of the perfect breed! Yet you must also know that in reality, there is no such thing as a perfect dog! The best that any breeder can do is to strive diligently toward a long term goal that will hopefully enable him/her to eliminate some undesirable traits, while locking in those that will improve the overall quality of their lines. In order to attain optimum results, many facets must be considered in the overall picture. Breeding just for type (show quality) can lead to many problems in other areas, such as hips & health! Too much focus on working attributes can lead to many variations of type, as can often be seen in working dogs versus show dogs. There must be a balance, with priorities placed on HEALTH, above all else! If we produce dogs that are exceptionally beautiful, but mentally unstable & prone to becoming fear biters, we have done this breed a great injustice! If our super intelligent working dogs even though extremely faulty as per the Standard are prone to SAS, the entire breed could self-destruct!
Due to the extreme popularity explosion that these dogs experienced upon entering the rare breed world, many opportunists set up mini puppy mills in order to mass-produce enough puppies to meet market demand. This led to several political (club) wars created and fueled by those that were only interested in making money on this new breed without any concern for the future welfare of the entire gene pool. Since none of these people had any experience as long-term breeders, nor much understanding in regard to genetics and the consequences of extreme inbreeding, much damage has already been done! At this point we need to know exactly where the worst problems are concentrated so that we can work out a plan that will help us to prevent this breed from actually becoming extinct.
The ISSR has NEVER been able to tell anyone what he or she can or cannot breed, unless there are specific breed warnings on the individual dogs themselves! Please help us to locate the dogs that have produced problems so that warnings can be placed on them, preventing them from further polluting our gene pool! Your reports will be held in strictest of confidence. We are not concerned with politics or breeder bashing! We are only concerned with identifying the genetic problems that have been produced, and tracking the individuals (dogs) that have been passing them on, so that their progeny can be monitored for the welfare of future generations! Please help us to accomplish these goals by filling out the enclosed questionnaire now! The short amount of time you dedicate today will certainly benefit the entire breed for many generations to come!!
Full results compiled from this survey will be available on our web site at www.ShilohShepherdS.org, if you have specific questions please feel free to contact any of the members of our genetic task force, listed below:
a. Pat Urso
b. Pam DymondWeed
c. Mynde Bunker
d. Karen Ursel
e. Lyn Segee
If your membership in the SSDCA is close to expiring, we encourage you both to renew and to encourage others to join. Our Newsletters are loaded with helpful information that you dont want to miss out on! We also have two e-mail groups that you can join if you would like to talk to me, or any of the other Shiloh owner members! Karen has dedicated much of her spare time to making our web site one of the most comprehensive breed sites available, please be sure to visit us often!
I will be anxiously waiting to hear the results from this survey. Please note that we need a minimum of 665 reports in order for Dr. Padgett to meaningfully evaluate our data. Yes, yours is very important, so please fill it out today! We have invited Dr. Padgett to present us with the results, and provide us with a detailed seminar that will help us chart a better future for this breed. Consider yourself invited! For more details, or to join our e-mail groups please contact Trillhill@aol.com.
(reprinted from the March-July 2000 Newsletter)
ISSR, Inc. Reports:
Health Survey (2000) and Ongoing Genetic Task Force Database:
Litter Evaluation Program Manual (updated 2010!)
other articles of interest:
The ISSR at work, for the betterment of the Shiloh Shepherd™ Breed, since 1991.