It is one of the biggest worries of dog lovers when they come to choose a new puppy. Is this puppy from a healthy bloodline, that isn't inbred or from bad stock?

In fact it is one of the reasons Euro Puppy was founded. To ensure many of the brilliant breeders we knew, often hard to find and with low profiles, could be promoted and have their puppies chosen by dog lovers.

It is sadly often the case that bigger breeding operations, sometimes of dubious quality, and the ones that are easiest found by unsuspecting customers.

The concerns when it comes to inbreeding causing genetic health issues in purebred dog breeds has been growing in recent years. It is certainly true that you have to take care when choosing the right puppy from the best, most professional breeder.

This is not too say that all breeds suffer from high levels of inbreeding, in fact many breeds have very little, and only very distant inbreeding used.

However there are hundreds of dog breeds out there, with so much chose to offer dog lovers. But inbreeding of dogs is quite a significant problem in some areas.

dalmatian puppy

Why does Inbreeding happen?

Two main reasons.

  1. Irresponsible breeding
  2. Limited blood stock, meaning more closer related dogs have to be bred together to ensure the purity of the bloodline.

We are going to look at the second point. Are we want to focus on the Dalmatian, as it is a perfect example of what has been happening in past years.

Sometimes in the quest for getting the "Perfect Dog", breeders try and wipe out variations within breeds. They do this through mating dogs with the perfect look and nature of the breed, and this can be taken to the extreme in the name of perfection.

A perfect example of a breed like the Dalmatian can be limited, and see breeders bring together a sire and dam that are closely related, and this leads to a progressively smaller gene pool to choose from.

While this can have the effect of ensuring the desired look of the breed, such as the perfect spot design on their coat, it also means that the pups that are born are more likely to have "defective" genes that manifest themselves as congenital conditions. That is why several thoroughbreds are not always very healthy, depending on what bloodlines you fine.

I myself have lost a beloved dog - A German Shepherd named Candy - to a congenital defect when she was in the prime of her life at the age of three.

doberman dog

Almost one third of all Dalmatians suffer from hearing disability due to congenital birth defects. This is a significant problem, as one third is a huge percentage. It is something that is very difficult to remedy, as for a breed like the Dalmatian, the gene pool is not massive. But this fact should make people more sensitive to the issues that arise from Inbreeding and the detrimental effects it has on the health of the dog.

Choosing your Dalmatian Puppy

Naturally what you read above leads to a higher incidence of deaths and lowers the average life expectancy of some pure breed dogs. It's very sad, and will require more responsible and concerned breeders to step in and find ways to avoid inbreeding as much as possible.  Thankfully this is now happening with some breeders.

If your dog has a few inconsistencies from the breed standard, you shouldn't be concerned as this can be an advantage (unless you plan to show him/her in a professional competition). Inconsistencies mean that your dog is probably more healthy than one that is "really pure", and surely that is a small price to pay?

However if you are careful and choose a dog from a good breeder, such as those on Euro Puppy you will greatly reduce the chance of any significant inbreeding in the bloodlines, and give you a better chance of having a healthier dog.